Before Calling for Emergency Plumbing on Your Flooded Toilet

Your toilet is used daily. There is just no way around it unless you decided to go on vacation. You need your toilet to flush properly and without fail. Unfortunately, clogs happen, usually at the most inconvenient times, and worse of all when the toilet starts overflowing all over the place.

Once your toilet does start overflowing there isn’t much you can do in the way of preventing it, you just got to go with the flow. (Get it? Flow… ). Be sure you are prepared for the worst by following these emergency plumbing tips.

Stop it at the source

If your toilet starts overflowing, the immediate action that must be taken is to stop the flow of water coming from the toilet. In most bathrooms the best place to find this is the toilet’s main shutoff valve. You can most likely see the water line from your toilet to the bathroom wall, along with a handle somewhere along the line. If you don’t see it, it could be that your valve is behind a wall or below the floor tiles. If that’s the case you’ll want to talk to a plumber about modifications to gain access. Other than shutting the main water valve to your house off, the toilet valve is the only way to fully stop the flooding.

Because your valve most likely isn’t turned very often, it may be very sticky or rusted making it harder to turn. It’s a good idea to turn the valve every few weeks to ensure its easily accessible when the unthinkable does happen.

… And if that doesn’t work

If your toilet is overflowing and you can’t get the shutoff valve to turn, the next stop should be the inside of the toilet tank. Go ahead and remove the lid on top of the toilet, then check the flapper. If the flapper is open, reach in and close it manually. This should stop the flow of water.

If the flapper is not open, or if it won’t stay closed manually, find the float ball. This is the component that floats on the surface of the water and stops the tank from filling at a certain level. If you lift the float ball to the top of the tank, the water will shut off.

Seven Things You Don’t Know About Bathroom Plumbing, But Should

When it comes to the plumbing in your home, it is important to be as “in the know” as you can possibly be so as to avoid major issues. This is perhaps the most important when it comes to your bathroom plumbing. Your bathroom happens to be one of the few rooms that you use only on occasion but serves as ground zero (aside from your kitchen) for prospective plumbing disasters. There is just so much that can go wrong, and given the nature of what your bathroom is used for, this can be a horrifying experience to go through.

As with most things, being as proactive as possible can help you head off most issues in your bathroom plumbing. Unfortunately, many homeowners just don’t have the wherewithal to get this knowledge under their belt.

Here are a few things you should know about your bathroom plumbing but probably don’t:

1. Shutting Off the Water – You must understand one fact – your bathroom will have an issue at some point, and because that issue deals with water, you need to act fast to make sure extensive damage doesn’t occur. In an emergency, it is important to know where your main water shut-off valve is and how to operate it.

2. Find Your Clean-Out Plugs – Back-ups will happen, so it’s good to know where your clean-out plugs are so that you can attend to clogs in a very direct way so as to remedy the problem. When you’re having your home built, or when you’re taking the time to walk through your prospective new home’s inspection, find out where the clean-outs will be.

3. Shut-Off Valves for Your Fixtures – Plumbing fixtures have shut off valves, which is the first line of defense when trying to shut-off water before tackling the main water shut-for valve. Quick thinking at the source can help avoid disasters.

4. Fix Your Faucet Drip – It may seem like just a few drops here & there, but over time, the amount of water wasted through a drippy faucet adds up & costs you serious money. Making this small repair can be one of the best cost-effective moves you can make.

5. Be Aware of Water Temperature – Be sure to regulate the hot water in your home, especially when it comes to your bath & shower time. Depending on the temperature, you could cause skin burns in seconds. It’s also important to notice the temperature of your water in general because if your sink, shower, or tub is having a tough time regulating temperature, it may be time for a repair or replacement of hardware.

6. Don’t ‘Trust’ Your Plumbing – Make it a priority to have a plumber inspect your home’s plumbing systems once a year. They will be able to let you know if you’re facing any particular issues in both the short-term & long-term. Plus, it helps to have a dependable plumber on your side in case you have any plumbing emergencies.

7. The Little Things – As a final note, but no less important, it is key to notice small changes in your bathroom. Whether it’s an ‘off’ smell, rust near a drain, or hairline cracks in porcelain fixtures, anything that is not normal may mean that something needs to be addressed as soon as possible before it can get bad.

Knowledge is power, and taking the time to get to know your bathroom plumbing is the most proactive stance you can take as a responsible homeowner.

Three Ways To Find An Emergency Plumber Near Me

No one can completely prepare for all the inconveniences that can occur during homeownership. We expect the electricity to work, our appliances to work, water to flow from the tap, and that same water to drain shortly after. When our plumbing system fails to work, it can quickly lead to disasters that are expensive and time consuming to fix. But, regardless of how hard we try to keep things in working order, sooner or later things will go wrong. Here are three ways to find an “emergency plumber near me.”

1. Prepare with a list or directory

When you own a home, live in a home, or rent out a home, you have to be prepared for any issues that may pop up. It is beneficial to plan ahead by creating a list of services that may be required for all different types of maintenance or repairs. Creating a list for electrical services, heating ventilation and cooling services, appliances, and especially plumbing services, will allow you to quickly contact and set up an appointment once an unforeseen incident occurs. For ease of use you could organize the list by service, by name, or even by other factors such as pricing and locality.

2. Use local resources

Just about every city has their own newspaper or local magazine that gets put out weekly, biweekly, or monthly. A weekly newspaper is a great way to stay up to date on any new services that may be available to you locally. Not only will you be supporting a local company, but you should even be able to get some feedback from neighbors and friends. With local companies, you can ensure that a job will be well done and that a strong reputation is at stake. Also, if there do happen to be any issues, you can head back and speak with a manager in person to have your issue taken care of.

3. Use technology

Currently, there are plenty of online resources to help you find the services you need. Many websites have popped up in recent years for the sole purpose of connecting local and national business with the exact type of customer who may need and require their services. Not only do these websites act as a directory to different parts of the country, they also contain helpful information in the form of reviews and word of mouth testimonials. Many smart phone apps can also search for this same information as well. The information you need is right at your finger tips.

Use these three tips the next time you are in need of a dire repair service. Be prepared and you will be ready for anything.

Make Simple Repairs to Your Copper Plumbing

Copper is one of the most popular materials used to create pipelines for homes and businesses. This is due to the metals excellent ability to conduct heat and electricity. It is also very long lasting due to its strength and it being relatively corrosion-resistant. It became the standard choice of builders everywhere starting around the 1960s.

Of course, as with all materials, copper pipes will break down and need replaced over time. On average, pipelines made from this material is expected to last between twenty-five and forty years. This means that many older homes are now experiencing the need to complete repairs on their pipelines. The main reason for your pipeline to need reparations is because of tiny, often unseen pinholes.

Pinholes begin to develop on the pipeline over time. This can be caused by a variety of things, such as the acidity of your water or just the age of the material. Unfortunately, you will find that it is often hard to find these pinholes as they may develop in an area that is not visible. Many homeowners do not realize that their pipeline has these holes until they see water damage or mold.

One of the biggest reasons you may see a breakdown of your copper pipes is if there are chloramines in your water system. This is a combination of chlorine and ammonia which is used to disinfect bacterial contaminants in your drinking water. Due to EPA standards, chloramines are found in water throughout the United States. These chloramines will corrode the inside of the pipeline over time and cause pinholes to develop, leading to leaks.

Another area that may need improvement in your home is the water pressure. It is recommended that you have a maximum pressure of sixty pounds; however, the plumbing code allows a pressure of eighty pounds. This added pressure leads to more force and velocity which causes erosion. This is something you may want to consider fixing after completing your pipeline repairs, so that your water pressure does not cause rapid erosion in the future.

A final reason you may see a breakdown of your pipeline is if you water heater is old. This is because steel particles will collect inside of hot water pipes, which will cause the interior to deteriorate. This corrosion will later cause pinhole leaks. This is another area you may want to consider repairing when having work completed on your pipeline.

In the past, repairing copper pipelines could be extremely expensive and time consuming. Luckily, more and more plumbing companies area advancing their technology to make reparations much more quickly and easily. One way is through the use of an epoxy lining. These methods are almost completely trenchless, meaning there will be no digging of your yard or home.

These trenchless methods allow for work to be done on your pipeline while it remains in place. Pinholes on your original pipes will be renewed and it will put an end to these inconvenient leaks. Since the methods are non-invasive, it also makes the process as a whole much more affordable. Also, it will not interfere with your daily life, which is especially good for those who own businesses.

As mentioned, copper pipes are an excellent material to use on both homes and businesses. Overall, they are highly durable, resistant to bacteria, fire, and earthquakes, and can fit in much smaller places than other materials. Unfortunately, this material will still deteriorate overtime causing small pinhole leaks which can lead to severe water damage. When you are hiring a plumber to repair your pipeline, ask about using trenchless methods to help lower your costs and time.

Converting Over To Unvented Hot Water

What does converting over to unvented hot water mean?

Basically, it means that both your hot and cold water supplies will work on the incoming water mains pressure.

So why would you convert over to unvented hot and cold water?

There are a few reasons why you would convert over, but I will explain the main reason first.

You have a shower, that when using, is very slow and just about gets you wet when showering, it’s annoying, you want to feel clean and refreshed after your shower.

You may be in the shower and someone opens a hot tap somewhere else, your shower then goes cold, even stops until the tap is closed.

Another good reason for converting over is freeing up space in the loft.

You will no longer need the cold water storage tank, normally located in the loft, sometimes it’s on the roof, even in a cupboard, by removing the tank it frees up valuable space, that we all need these days.

Something else that most people don’t even think about when converting over, is it’s more hygienic, Let me explain.

With a cold water storage take, it’s not completely sealed, so birds, vermin and more can get into the tank.

Once they enter your tank, your water could become contaminated, you could be bathing, even brushing your teeth in contaminated water.

Many years ago a customer of mine, asked if I would attend his property, he had small brown hairy bits coming out of his bathroom basin tap, and would I come and take a look.

Once at the property, I went into the loft to check the cold water storage tank, to my amazement, there were 5 or 6 dead squirrels in the tank.

They had been in there for some time as they were starting to break apart, this explained why my customer was complaining of brown bits coming out of the tap.

So you can see why converting over to unvented hot and cold water is so much more hygienic.

All unvented hot water cylinders are directly fed from the incoming mains water supply and have no openings for any form of vermin to enter, it’s completely sealed.

So what are the pros and cons of converting over to unvented?

High pressure at all water outlets for both hot and cold supplies, including the shower.

Freeing up valuable space by removing the cold water storage tank.

For me though, the most important of all is, being more hygienic.

Before you have any work carried out, the incoming water mains needs to be checked, to ensure you have enough pressure to supply both the hot and cold outlets.

The pipework needs to be of the correct size to supply the outlets, you may have a very good pressure but if the pipework is too small, it will work but not as good as it could.

All unvented hot water cylinders must be maintained, this usually involves an annual service.

It’s a good idea to ask the company that carries out the annual service on your gas boiler to carry out a service on the unvented cylinder at the same time.

All companies and engineers who work on unvented systems need to be registered by law, just like anyone working with gas.