Be Prepared for Winter Plumbing Problems
Plumbing problems can occur at any time, but during the winter months you’re more apt to experience ice cold showers, leakage, freezing pipes and flooding. One of the most severe problems that occurs this time of year is frozen or burst pipes
, often with devastating results, e.g. flooding inside your home. Be prepared for the emergencies with these helpful tips.
Below are some tips to help reduce the chances of frozen or burst pipes:
- Insulate your plumbing pipes against freezing.
- Keep the doors inside your home open. This helps heat circulate through your entire home.
- If temperatures are expected to drop overnight, let the warm water drip, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall. Even a trickle of hot and cold water can prevent your pipes from freezing.
- Open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to uninsulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
- If you’re going out of town during the cold winter months, before you leave set the thermostat in your home no lower than 55F (12C) and ask a friend or neighbor to check your house daily to make sure it’s warm enough to prevent freezing.
Here are some tips for dealing with plumbing emergencies:
- If you have a frozen pipe, turn off the main water supply by using the stop valve. This valve is usually located under the kitchen sink or in your basement at the water meter. Make sure to protect everything around the frozen pipe to avoid damage if it bursts. In this situation you need to thaw the pipe. First, open the tap nearest the part of the pipe you think is frozen. You’ll want to get water to flow through once it’s melted. Using a hair dryer, carefully thaw the ice in the pipe starting at the end closest to the tap. DO NOT use a heat gun or blowtorch.
- FACT: When water freezes in a pipe it expands and can exert pressure over 2,000 pounds per square inch, enough pressure to rupture most any pipe filled with water, providing no place for the ice to expand.
- A burst pipe can definitely be classified as an emergency, having the potential to cause serious damage to your home’s structure and electrical wiring. Keep the emergency number of a trusted plumber handy. When an emergency occurs you don’t have time to start searching for a plumber. (HINT: Check ahead of time about pricing, some plumbers may charge high hourly rates for emergency services.)
- When dealing with a burst pipe, turn off the water supply at the main valve. This may be located under the kitchen sink or in your basement at the water meter. Next, drain the system by turning on all your cold taps and flushing your toilets. Get a plumber out to your house as soon as possible to fix the damage.
- Remember plumbing problems can happen at any time but by being prepared you can prevent further damage to your home and save yourself an even bigger headache.
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As a homeowner, you know how important it is to keep the drains clean and free of debris.
However, drain cleaning is not always as easy to do as one might think. And, liquid drain cleaners have proven to be very ineffective.
Over the years, substances we pour down the drain eventually stick to the sides, and the drain becomes smaller.
Grease and oil should never be poured into a drain. They are the main culprits of drain clogs. Outside drains can also become clogged by tree roots.
As strange as this might sound, it’s not a rare occurrence. Tree roots can grow into the outside sewer pipes.
A professional plumber can best determine the cause and best solution of a drain clog…whether inside or outside.
If tree roots are causing the blockage, an electric snake unit will be needed to clear the roots and restore drainage to your home. Cleaning out the pipes with a snake may need to be performed on an annual basis, depending on what type of use your drains receive.
Inside, professional plumbers clean all types of drains including toilets, tub and shower drains, and floor drains. They have the tools and supplies needed to quickly, safely and effectively unclog the drains.
So if you have a stubborn clog that will not drain, you are probably best served to contact an experienced, local plumber
One of the most frustrating things about a leaking toilet is that it’s very difficult to find the source of the leak.
It could be condensation problems, a loose toilet, a rotting donut or a pipe leaking somewhere.
It might be something simple or it could be something that requires special tools to fix.
If not repaired, leaking toilets can cause major damage.
Watch for water on the bathroom floor. If you have an upstairs bathroom and the toilet is leaking, you might see some signs in a lower ceiling.
The best course of action is to call a professional plumber at the first sign of a leaking toilet. Sometimes a leaking toilet is the result of a loose toilet. The solution isn’t just tightening the toilet. In most cases, a new donut is needed.
If the floor is rotten, new flooring around the toilet will be needed before the donut is replaced.
Leaky Bathroom Faucet?
Here's How to Repair a Bathroom Faucet!
leaky bathroom faucet is more than just a nuisance. Even if the leak is only a single drop of water every second can result in the loss of 50 gallons of water per week. The cost of that water makes it much cheaper and environmentally responsible to fix the leak as soon as possible.
There are various reasons for a leak in a bathroom faucet. In compression faucets, the washers may wear out and in the other washerless types of faucets the O-ring or stem may become defective. The repair for any type of faucet relies on replacing the faulty part.
Worn Out Washers
Compression type faucets rely on the compression of a rubber washer to keep the water from passing the turnoff and exiting the spot. Replacing the washer is relatively easy but requires a little strength and the proper tools.
To Replace a Washer:
- Using the valves underneath the sink, turn off the water to the faucet.
- Close the drain and place a cloth in the sink. (This is simply to catch any parts that you may drop.)
- Using a screwdriver, pry out the decorative cap on the top of the faucet handle and undo the screw underneath.
- Then, using a wrench, gently unscrew the packing nut that holds the stem in place.
- Next, unscrew the stem.
- On the bottom of the stem, you will probably see a torn or otherwise damaged rubber washer. It must be replaced with a washer identical in size and width.
- Replace the parts in reverse order and the leak should be fixed. Be sure to only gently tighten the parts as excessive tension is not necessary and could break something else.
Replacing the Flapper
Replacing the flapper is generally an easy fix and may be replaced when you experience a leaky toilet. Like in part one, be sure that the incoming water supply to the toilet tank is turned off. Remove the tank lid and as stated in part one and put it in a safe place. Hold down the tank lever and let the water exit the tank. At this point, you may wish to use a pair of disposable gloves to protect your hands. Generally, the flapper will have a film covering it from being exposed to the chlorine in the water. The film will stain your hands as well as your clothing!
Next, remove the chain from the tank lever and remove the flapper. There are a variety of types and styles of flappers available. You’ll need to take your existing flapper with your to your local hardware, plumbing supply, or home improvement center. In most cases, they should be able to provide either an exact, or an adequate replacement.
When you get back home, simply connect the flapper back into place and connect the chain and you are done!
Replacing the Fill Valve:
The replacement of the toilet’s fill valve is generally an easy task. The first step in the process is to secure the incoming water to the toilet tank. Once this is done, remove the tank lid, and put it in a safe place. Tank lids vary by manufacture and can prove to be costly when they are broken! Now, hold the tank lever down and open the flapper letting as much water exit the tank as possible.
Once the toilet tank has drained, remove the excess water with a sponge or shop-vac until the tank is dry. Next, remove the supply line from the fill valve. After the supply line is removed, remove the shank nut from the fill valve. Now you should be able to remove the fill valve from the tank.
There are a variety of different fill valves available. As a rule of thumb, take the fill valve you are replacing with you to your local hardware or home improvement center. An assistant should be able to provide you with an adequate replacement.
We also offer plumbing heating and drain cleaning services in Burlington County, willingboro, burlington, fort, dix bordentown, vincetown, wrightown, columbus, cookstown florance, pemberton, brownsmills, roebling. and many more service area's give us a call 609-815-5144 for all your Burlington County plumbing needs.
Nearly every house encounters plumbing related difficulties every now and then. Whether it’s a sluggish water flow and drainage, blocked toilets, slab leak, clogged sink pipes or water heater problems. Aside from these, there are plenty of different water system emergencies which could occur. Plumbing engineers are also necessary whenever you decide to sell your house or perhaps make renovations.Plumbing problems with respect to boilers, gas furnaces, heat pumps and hot water heaters also need to be addressed with utmost accuracy and only the right plumbing contractors can solve them. Problems occur in all these equipment due to the passage of pipes and hence it may need urgent repairing. It is best for the experts to repair the sodden valves, leaking pipes, damaged pipes, stationary pipes and even gas leaks. You should not fix any of these problems on your own as this may lead to grave errors.To fix your plumbing problems, you must try to select a professional plumbing company that can rectify or fix the fault immaculately. However, this activity may not be that easy due to the profusion of plumbers in the locality. You should try to involve the best plumbers
that offer 24 hour plumbing service.There are many plumbing companies that specialize in only a specific set of plumbing issues; like one may do just plumbing repairs while other may handle only drains and sewer issues. So, ensure that the plumbing service you hire provides the plumbing solution you need. If you need a plumber for an industrial unit, then industrial plumbers is what you need, else you can hire commercial plumbers.Some licensed plumbers offer extremely detailed expertise with respect to boiler installation and blocked toilet. Many plumbing companies also offer specific services as per your needs like HVAC fixing or repair, fixing of air conditioners, and heaters along with the centralized fixing of air conditioners and heaters as well.Plumbing problems such as minor or major plumbing repairs could be done successfully if you select a suitable plumber or any plumbing contractor. You can very easily seek valuable information from the yellow pages and local newspaper advertisements about suitable plumbing service. Alternatively, you can also acquire useful lead from your family members or friends who may have hired the services in the past. They will be able to guide in a better way.There are several plumbers around; ensure that you hire a suitable one that offers professional and timely service. Getting the plumbing emergency fixed on time is very important, so hire the services of an expert to avoid any hassles and save time.Once you find the plumbing company, you must ask then to evaluate the plumbing job and give you an estimate beforehand to avoid problems later on.
- The prime concern when planning a kitchen remodel is to set a price range. You may have an idea of what you want the finished project to look like but it could be possible to manage this and not let prices run away with you. You could end up with a stylish remodeled kitchen and proper kitchen plumbing, and grab a few good deals to keep you within your budget.
Ways to Save Money on Kitchen Plumbing Remodeling
It is often possible to recycle appliances and have your new kitchen cabinets remodeled around them. The savings made this way could run be substantial. Remember though that when older appliances are disturbed, it can trigger kitchen plumbing problems. If you prefer to buy new, look for ones that are economical to run to save on electricity bills.
Keep sinks, washing machines etc. located as close to their original kitchen plumbing as possible. This saves on costs. Faucets can get expensive so note that chrome ones are usually less costly. Go for faucets that have easily replaceable parts inside, which will prove more cost effective in the long run.
When choosing fixtures and fittings, go for neutral colors as they will remain modern and therefore last longer. This should also make decorating around much easier.
Consider the Flooring
Have a good look around when deciding on floor covering. Take note of the prices of different types. Laminate flooring looks modern and stylish and costs much less than solid wood.
If the current floor covering is in good condition, it can be cleaned and re used. If it is removable, look underneath, there could be tiles or a wooden floor that could be retreated and brought to life again.
What’s in a Cupboard?
Think carefully about what cupboards you need. You could easily add more at a later date or if the current ones are good, maybe you could just have new doors fitted. Keep to a basic design and still keep within your budget.
- Whether you’re dealing with a plumbing crisis or have a large plumbing bathroom remodel project planned, employing a plumber can be daunting. Here are some ideas to assist you in finding the right plumber.
Can I Manage by Myself?
If the plumbing bathroom remodel job that you are tackling with is too big, and it probably is, then don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your relatives or friends may recommend you an adequate plumber. If no one can recommend you one, perform a quick Google search and see if any of those listed in there meet your plumbing bathroom remodel requirements.
Find the Right Kind of Plumber
You will find there are plumbers who actually have specialized themselves in performing such activities. Some advertise for general household plumbing repairs, others specialize in remodeling bathrooms. Be certain that you get the right one to fit your requirements.
Don’t be Afraid to Ask Questions
Ask the plumber how long he has been qualified, if removal of waste materials is built into the price quoted and if he does the cleaning of the debris after the job is finished.
Do Check References
Ask for numbers of previous clients who can testify to your plumber’s standard of work. If your chosen plumber is unwilling to give references it may be a good idea to move on in your search for a reputable plumber. If you are unhappy with a specific plumber, keep searching, you are sure to find someone.
Check the Pricing
Some plumbers will charge an hourly rate, while most will use a flat rate system. In general, the flat rate system will save you time and money. But there are some times when the job will require an hourly rate. Ask each plumber how they charge.
In an emergency, don’t let the pressure affect you and prompt you to pay any price with no preamble. Ask for a fixed price quote and get more than one quote so that you can compare expenses.
The Best Way to Pay
If you are only paying for a simple repair, pay when the work has been completed. For a bigger job such as a plumbing bathroom remodel, pay a small deposit ahead of the job commencing, and maybe a second small payment midpoint of the work. When the work has been completed to your satisfaction, ask to see documents proving that all suppliers etc. have been paid; only when you have seen these should you proceed with making the final payment.
Make sure that the power is turned off – this is a prime safety measure. The water supply to the tank should then be stopped and then a hose should be attached to the drain valve. Drain the tank as this will clear out any residue that has built up in the tank. Before you proceed any further, turn on a hot tap elsewhere in the house to avoid a vacuum build-up. Use a hose to flush the tank through. When the water is running clean, remove the hose and turn the water back on. Let the cylinder fill up, then turn on the electricity. In the instructions for your tank you will find out just how to test the pressure relief valve. Look at the elements and see if there is a build-up of lime scale. Removal of this or replacing the elements will improve the performance of the tank. The anode rods should also be inspected for corrosion as they could also need replacing. Gas Water Heater Maintenance
When inspecting the burner, keep anything combustible out of the way. Check the pilot light and ensure that it is burning properly. This should be a routine matter and your instruction manual should tell you what the flame should look like. To drain the tank, follow the same instructions given for an electric heater. First ensure that there is no pilot light on and then follow the previous instructions for draining. Ventilation and connections should be inspected every couple of months in case of leaks but refer to your manual as each model has its own particular tips. Water Heater Maintenance for Tankless Versions
Keep a check on the inline filter to the heater. Turn the heater off, shut off the feed line valve and follow the instructions in your manual that state how to remove the inline filter. Your instruction manual will give specific instructions for your model. If it shows any signs of dirt or fragments it should be cleaned. This type of water heater can also be flushed through regularly. Drain the water and flush through to remove all traces of sediments. This should be done regularly by a licensed plumber
certified in tankless water heaters to maintain the unit’s efficiency. Solar Water Heater Maintenance
The solar panels should be inspected regularly. They should be in the sun all day. If trees grow in front of them, cut them back or move the panels to keep them functioning efficiently. Ensure that they are clean and free of leaves etc. The wiring and plumbing need to be inspected regularly; your handbook will tell you how everything should look. If you are in doubt you are advised to call an electrician or plumber. Once again, you can drain and flush the tank as explained in the above-mentioned instructions. Flush Kits for Sediments
These kits are there to help you manage the build-ups that occur in the bottom of the tank. The kits include a curved dip tube, a ball-valve assembly with cap and pipe thread seal tape. They are much more efficient than the hose method. By using this equipment you will be able to stir the dirt in the bottom of the tank to prevent settling. The valve has a larger opening which allows the dirt to pass through more easily. By carrying out these procedures regularly you will make your system run more efficiently and ensure running costs are kept to a minimum.
Time for spring time plumbing repairs, or add a hose connection, drain expansion tanks on hot water boilers, faucet and toilet repairs.