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Archive | Plumbing Tips

Quick Tips on Hot Water Heaters

Quick Tips on Toilets

Quick Tips on Clogs

Some day your hot water heater will start acting up. it may stop producing hot water or start emitting a foul smell. You will need to fix it, and fast. To avoid this emergency you should perform consistent maintenance on your water heater.

If you have a gas water heater, you should periodically check the pilot light. The flame should be blue with a yellow tip. If it is yellow, this may mean you need a safety adjustment and you should contact us at 503.519.6644.

While you are under your water heater checking the pilot light, make sure there is not an excessive buildup of soot. This can cause a clogged flue, which in turn can lead to carbon monoxide leaking into your home. Thus, cleaning any soot is of vital importance!

Sediment buildup at the bottom of your tank can cause a multitude of problems, such as causing your heater to make loud noises or hindering performance. You can avoid this by draining the water from the tank once every three months.

Regularly check your sacrificial anode rod, a device used to attract corrosion and protect the inside of the water heater tank. Usually it is attached to the top of the tank by a hex head screw. If the steel wire in the rod’s core is exposed or the diameter of the entire rod is less than half the original ¾ inch diameter, it needs to be replaced. Note that it is common for calcium carbonate to cover the rod. This does not mean the rod is corroded and can usually be easily removed with a towel. However, if it starts to harden the rod will no longer be able to do its job and it will need to be replaced. Check for hardened calcium carbonate by bending the rod. If it flakes, you need a replacement rod.

Have your hot water heater inspected by a contractor at a minimum once every two years. He or she can diagnose potential problems and enact easy, quick repairs, which will save you from a complete water heater replacement down the road.

The average person spends about three years of their life using a toilet. This makes it one of the most important and useful appliances in a home. Prolong its life with these useful tips.

The toilet uses the most water out of any household appliance. Toilet leaks only add to the water consumption and, thus, should be checked for consistently. Note they are not always noticeable. To see if there is an internal leak, put food coloring in the tank and check the toilet bowl later. If the bowl water is colored, there is a leak from the tank. This may mean you need to replace the tank ball or flapper. This test should be performed at least once a year.

A slow flushing toilet should never be ignored because it can cause overflows and backups. The usual causes are partial clogs, sediment buildup, or malfunctions with equipment in the tank. Conduct periodic checks on your toilet to diagnose the problem.

Household cleaners are oftentimes detrimental to the proper functioning of a toilet. This is especially true for drop-in cleaner tabs. When they are almost dissolved, the tank flushes the debris into the toilet bowl and it often gets stuck in the port holes, which are vital to the flushing mechanism. This debris is very hard to clean and you can be left waiting months for it to completely dissolve without the help of a professional.

Never flush sanitary items down the toilet. An eco-friendly alternative to flushing these clog-causing products is to dispose of them in bio-degradable bags, such as the ones produced by Golden Group International.

Clogs are one of the most common homeowner problems. They are not only an annoyance, but can also lead to overflows and water damage. Keep your drains clog-free by implementing these easy preventative practices.

Never flush sanitary napkins, baby wipes, or very thick toilet paper down the toilet. These can expand or get caught on corroding pipes and cause clogs. Instead, dispose of them in bio-degradable bags, such as the ones produced by Golden Group International. This not only prevents clogs but also is an eco-friendly way to dispose of soiled sanitary products.

Do not use liquid cleaning supplies meant to clear clogs. These cleaners can damage pipes. Rather, try using a plumbing snake or plunger.

Utilize strainers to catch hair in showers and tubs.

Never put fat, grease, or cooking oils down the drain. These fats solidify in cold pipes and cause clogs. To dispose, put it in a Tupperware and leave it on your counter until it solidifies. Then dispose of it in a compost bin for garbage collection.