Month: September 2019

What Are the Black Specks in My Water?

If you have black specks in your home’s water, something’s not right—and identifying the source of the problem is essential to fixing it and restoring your home’s supply of clean water.

Here’s a look at the most common sources of black specks from tap water and how to get rid of them.

What Are the Black Specks in My Water?

Top 3 Sources of Black Specks in Water

  1. Pipe corrosion: Old pipes can begin to corrode after many years of use. When they do, small, irregular pieces of pipe can break off and wind up in your water. Corroded pipes usually end up sending black specks through cold water taps, and these black specks are most apparent when your home’s water has been turned back on by the water company after a shut-off.
  2. Pieces of corroded water heater: If you see black specks when you turn on your hot water in the tub, shower, or sink, your water heater is likely corroding, or the water lines to and from the water heater are corroded. It’s not uncommon for black specks to remain on the sides of sinks, tubs, and showers after the hot water has been turned off.
  3. Pieces of broken parts: Are the black specks in your water small and rubbery? These could be disintegrated pieces of a rubber gasket, washer, or flexible supply hose. Rubber can begin to break down after years of use or because of disinfectants used in the city’s water supply.

How Do I Get Rid of Black Specks in My Water?

While black specks in your water can be alarming, the good news is that there’s a lot that can be done to get rid of them—and prevent them from coming back!

Depending on the source of your water’s black specks, cleaning up your water could involve:

To get first-class solutions to restoring your home’s water and maintaining your plumbing system, contact Len The Plumber. Our expert plumbers are ready to help!

Call 800-950-4619 or contact us online for plumbing service in Maryland, Northern Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Washington, D.C.

We proudly offer 24-hour emergency service at no extra charge, as well as flexible financing options and the highest-quality service.

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Ways You Can Create a Plumbing Problems

emergency-plumbing-situationThink of this as a list of things we, as professional plumbers, don’t want you to do with your plumbing. We offer emergency plumbing in Glendale, AZ to deal with the disasters that can happen because of poor treatment of fixtures and other parts of the plumbing. It’s an important part of our job to be available whenever people need them. But we also want our customers to have few problems in the first place. We offer preventive services to help maintain plumbing so emergencies are rare, but there are steps you can take to even further lower opportunities for your plumbing to go wrong.

Or perhaps we should say “there are steps you shouldn’t take.” Below are a few of these steps that can cause minor to major plumbing issues.

Going “do-it-yourself” for repairs or installations

This is the biggest cause of unnecessary plumbing disasters, and we see it all the time. Amateur futzing with the pipes with only a Youtube video for a guide often causes leaks, clogs, and broken appliances. Only allow licensed plumbers to handle repairs and installations: they have the training, tools, and experience to get the job done right at a fraction of the time. (Unfortunately, the previous owner of your house may have done some amateur fixes that are ticking time bombs. Professional maintenance can help detect these.)

Not looking for the water shut-off valve ahead of time

You and every adult in your household need to know the location of the water shut-off valve and how to work it. It’s located next to the water meter, usually down in a concrete pit near the sidewalk at the front of the house. Knowing where this valve is can save you from massive water damage in case of an unstoppable leak in your house. You’ll still need to call plumbers for help, but at least you won’t have to pay for expensive water damage remediation.

Throwing trash into the garbage disposal

We wish garbage disposals were called anything else. All plumbers do. The name makes it easy for people to think that actual garbage can go down into the disposal: paper, plastic, cigarettes, bits of wood, packing material, etc. But only chewable food waste should go into the disposal. This means that fruit pits, unpopped popcorn kernels, and meat bones are also not allowed. You’ll bring your garbage disposal’s life to a fast end if you feed it garbage.

Using liquid drain cleaner to clear clogs

Plumbers would have these chemical drain cleaners banned if they could. Not only are these “cleaners” only partially effective, leaving plenty of debris lining the pipe walls, they contribute to damaging drainpipes. Often, the acidic chemicals remain down in the p-trap of the draining, eating away at the metal and plastic. These chemicals aren’t good for you or anyone else in your household, either.

The Trusted Plumber provides residential plumbing system services in Glendale and the surrounding areas. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today. Call for emergency plumbing assistance.

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Storm Drain Cleaning

Storm drain cleaning

Storm drains give rainwater a place to go so it doesn’t flood your property. With all of the rain the South Florida area gets, these drains play an important role in protecting your property from flooding and serious water damage. Since debris can build up in them, especially after storms, you might need storm drain cleaning done from time to time.

Reasons for Storm Drain Cleaning

In order for your storm drains to do their job, they need to be kept clear of debris. Otherwise, clogs can occur and prevent water from draining. Storm drains normally direct rainwater to nearby creeks and other bodies of water. When this water can’t move through your storm drain system, it backs up onto your property. If this water floods and reaches your house, you could end up with water or moisture damage that affects your foundation and other parts of your home’s exterior. If severe flooding occurs, it might even reach your home’s interior.

The grate of your storm drain normally helps prevent debris from getting in. Damage to the grate can make it easier for leaves, small twigs and larger pieces of debris to get into the pipes. If this damage isn’t repaired, debris accumulates inside your storm drain and blocks rainwater from flowing through. Keep in mind that during severe or frequent storms, your storm drain is exposed to more debris overall, which increases the risk of having it become clogged. When your storm drains are free of debris, rainwater can move through the grate and pipes to other sources of water and away from your home.

Benefits of Storm Drain Cleaning

When you have your storm drains cleaned, you can reduce your risk of having clogs occur. You don’t have to wait for signs of a blockage to appear, such as flooding, to have this done. If you haven’t had your storm drains cleaned in awhile or if you’ve had a lot of storms and rain in your area recently, you should consider scheduling a cleaning.

Professional plumbers at A to Z Statewide Plumbing can come to your property to clear your storm drains. Our experienced technicians have the right tools and skills to ensure that your storm drains are free of debris, so that your property is safe from flooding.

If you need to schedule storm drain cleaning on your South Florida property, please contact A to Z Statewide Plumbing today. Our company uses state-of-the-art equipment for clearing drains and making any needed repairs to your storm drain system, such as fixing damaged grates or covers. We’re available 24 hours a day for emergency plumbing services in the South Florida area, including Hollywood, Miami and Fort Lauderdale.

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Homeowners’ Go-To Guide on Sewer Pipes

Homeowners’ Go-To Guide on Sewer Pipes Do you know what type of sewer piping your home has? If you’re like most homeowners, you only think about your sewer pipes when something goes wrong—like when you have a sewage backup or drain problem.

Knowing what type of sewer pipe you have, however, can help you:

Here’s a look at the various types of sewer pipes that are typically used in homes. Whenever you need help diagnosing and repairing issues with your drain and sewer system, don’t hesitate to contact Len The Plumber.

We offer 2-hour response times for all drain and sewer emergencies, and we never charge extra fees for after-hours emergency service.

Orangeburg Sewer Pipes

Orangeburg piping, also referred to as bituminous fiber piping, is made of wood pulp sealed with coal tar. It was widely used during World War II due to its cheap cost and the shortage of cast iron. Orangeburg sewer pipes continued to be widely used up until the 1970s.

Originally, Orangeburg piping was intended for dry use in electrical and telecommunications applications—not for water and sewage uses. Consequently, Orangeburg sewer pipes are not as durable as other types of sewer pipes, and they are far more susceptible to:

  • Bellying
  • Tree root infiltration
  • General deterioration
  • And other problems

Cast Iron Sewer Pipes

Far more durable than Orangeburg piping, cast iron sewer pipes were widely used in homes built before the 1960s. These types of sewer pipes were typically installed with vertical drain systems, and they tend to last about 30 years.

Despite their durability, cast iron sewer pipes are prone to corrosion and rust, as well as waste buildup due to their uneven interiors. That means that, as cast iron piping ages, it can be far more susceptible to:

  • Clogs
  • Cracking
  • Holes
  • Collapses

Clay Sewer Pipes

Clay sewer pipes are another type of piping used before and during the World War II era. These pipes, made of a clay-shale blend, can last for 30 or more years. They are environmentally friendly and inert, making them resistant to chemicals and acids.

Despite their advantages, however, clay pipes are brittle and porous, making them susceptible to:

  • Leaking
  • Tree root infiltration
  • Crumbling over time
  • Cracking and snapping, especially under extreme pressure

Concrete Sewer Pipes

Concrete has been used both as an encasement for clay piping and as a piping material itself. Concrete sewer pipes are extremely durable and have an average service life of about 30 years. Along with plastics, concrete is considered a new-generation material for sewer pipes.

While concrete sewer pipes are not immune to damage or aging that can trigger the need for repair or replacement, this type of sewer piping is currently popular because of its affordability, strength, and longevity.

PVC & ABS Sewer Pipes

PVC (polyvinyl chloride) and ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) are also among the new-generation piping that’s been widely used in homes built since the 1970s. As one of the most durable and long-lasting pipes, PVC and ABS piping is:

  • Rust-proof: PVC and ABS piping won’t corrode over time.
  • Cost-effective: Plastic sewer piping is extremely affordable.
  • Smooth: The even, smooth interiors and exteriors of these pipes make them resistant to root intrusion.
  • Versatile: PVC and ABS piping can be used alone or with cast iron or clay piping.

While this type of sewer piping is not heat-tolerant—and it can be susceptible to cracking if the walls are thinner, it’s still one of the most popular options for sewer line pipes.

Types of Sewer Piping: The Bottom Line

When it comes to sewer line pipes, the bottom line is that:

  • If your home was built before the 1970s and it has Orangeburg, cast iron, or clay sewer pipes, your piping has likely reached the end of its life span, and you should consider sewer pipe replacement before your sewer line breaks.
  • If you do experience a sewer line failure and you need to replace your sewer piping, PVC and ABS are likely your best options for a new sewer line.
  • Len The Plumber is the team you can rely on for all of your sewer line needs!

Call 800-950-4619 for emergency sewer line service and a 2-hour response time. We never charge extra for after-hours service, and we always provide FREE estimates for sewer line service.

You can also contact us online for non-emergency sewer line service.

With Len The Plumber, you can always expect:

  • Upfront pricing
  • First-class service
  • Top-quality solutions from experts who truly care about restoring your plumbing and sewer system!

Len The Plumber has been offering exceptional plumbing services throughout Maryland, Northern Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Washington, D.C. for more than two decades. That’s just one reason why we’re a top-rated local plumbing company!

We invite you to experience our excellence for yourself, and we look forward to helping you with any of your plumbing needs!

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The Benefits of Water Softener System Installation

clean drop of water

Hard water—water that contains high levels of mineral salts like iron, magnesium, and calcium—is a fairly common problem in homes across the United States. The hardness or softness of a home’s water depends greatly on the quality of its source and the mineral levels naturally found in that area. When the balance tips toward an excess of minerals, the most common solution is water treatment with a water softener.

What Does a Water Softener Actually Do?

As its name implies, a water softener is a home appliance that conditions the water coming into the home and reduces its hardness. Drawing from a supply of salt (sodium chloride or potassium chloride), the softener allows sodium or potassium ions to replace the hard mineral ions present in the water. The newly softened water can then be pumped for use throughout the house, while the hard minerals and other wastewater are drained out.

To keep your water softener functioning properly for as long as possible, make sure it is installed by an experienced, licensed plumber and that you take care of maintenance at regular intervals. You’ll also need to make sure you keep the salt supply sufficiently filled. If your water begins to seem hard again after installing a softener system, the salt level may be low or the unit may need servicing.

It should be noted that there are some salt-free water conditioners on the market that soften water in ways that don’t involve ion exchange. These are far less common and won’t be discussed here.

The Many Benefits of Softened Water

Conditioning the water you use throughout your home can have a wide variety of benefits, saving you money and improving your experience. Below are just a few common examples of the kinds of positive changes properly softened water can bring to your home and life.

Reduces Mineral Buildup

close up of faucet

Over time, water that has significant traces of hard minerals will begin to deposit those minerals on your appliances, sinks, dishes, and glassware, leaving unsightly stains, spots, and crusty-looking buildup. A water softener removes these excess minerals, reducing the risk of developing ugly, potentially destructive things like limescale and toilet bowl rings.

Lengthens the Lifespan of Household Products and Appliances

When mineral deposits build up in your pipes and the internal workings of your home appliances, serious blockages or pressure changes can occur that reduce their effectiveness, increase the risk of breakage, and simply wear them out faster than normal. In severe cases, you could be facing a major leak and/or serious plumbing damage.

You’ll also likely go through products like conditioner, lotion, dish detergent, paper towels, and household cleaners more quickly than normal, simply because you’ll need to use them more often to deal with the repercussions of hard water.

It’s Better for Your Skin and Hair

Hard water can dry out your skin and hair, as well as make it difficult for you to lather products or rinse without leaving a thin layer of soap. The sodium (or potassium) ions in soft water, on the other hand, can have a moisturizing effect on the skin and help to balance the pH level of your hair, leaving it feeling smoother and healthier.

white woman doing her daily skincare routine

It Can Make Your Water Heater More Efficient

By removing the hard minerals that cause buildup, a softening system keeps your water heater functioning its best. According to Good Housekeeping (UK), as little as 1.6mm of scale buildup inside a water heater can reduce its heating efficiency by as much as 12%. Better efficiency means you get the hot water you need when you need it without having to use extra gas or electricity to produce it.

How to Tell if You Need a Water Softener

Even though hard water is extremely common, it’s not always easy to spot. In fact, many homeowners unknowingly use hard water daily for years before they even begin to suspect it as a cause of problems. If you’re not sure whether your water needs to be conditioned, the following are some common red flags to watch for.

Fixtures and Appliances Have Developed Unsightly Lime Scale or Staining

If you’re starting to see crusty white deposits around your faucet or unusual stains in your bathtub, they may indicate that your water is too hard and is starting to leave minerals behind on various surfaces. These deposits can be quite a pain to scrub away and will only get worse with time if you leave them unattended. Installing a softener can help you prevent further scaling and stains.

Your Skin and Hair Are Struggling

If you’ve developed dry skin or are having issues with an existing skin condition, it could be a sign that hard water is taking a toll on your dermal health. Likewise, dry, brittle hair and a flaky, itchy scalp could also be caused by the use of hard water with excess mineral content.

Take note of any flare-ups or changes. If you notice that there is an improvement when you take a bath or shower in a place with softened water (at a friend’s house or in a hotel, for example), there’s a good chance a softener could be the answer to your problems at home.

Your Water Tastes Metallic or “Dirty”

If the unfiltered water from your tap tastes like it’s been sitting in an old pipe for days, you might be tasting the iron or other hard minerals in your water supply. Check different faucets throughout your house and compare your water’s taste to the water in a building with a softener. If you taste something dirty or metallic throughout your home but not in places with a softener, the culprit could be hard water.

Laundry Is Stiff, Faded, and Not Always Clean

Hard water can be harsh on fabrics, sapping them of their color faster than normal and leaving them feeling stiff and scratchy after laundering. In some cases, you may even find a powdery residue or signs of detergent scum left on your clothing from the water’s poor rinsing ability. If you’re using a laundry softener product and going through it faster than usual, you might be compensating for hard water.

Your Utility Bills Are Climbing for No Clear Reason

If your water, electricity, or natural gas costs seem to be rising without any obvious cause, it’s possible that things like reduced appliance function, longer showers, multiple washes, and poor water heater efficiency could be regularly eating up energy and costing you big. Dig into your energy usage habits and consider whether hard water might be causing such inefficiencies.

Soften Your Water with a Professionally Installed System from MET Plumbing & Air Conditioning

If you suspect that your home is plagued with hard water, it may be time to consider installing a water softening system. Throughout the Houston, TX area, homeowners have trusted the local plumbers at MET Plumbing & Air Conditioning for professional water softener installation, softener maintenance, faucet repair, plumbing inspection, and a wide range of other general plumbing needs.

We strive to be your top choice for commercial and residential plumbing, with service available 24 hours a day. Even when you’re on a tight budget, we make it easy to get affordable service with promotional discounts, coupons, and convenient financing options.

To learn more about our plumbing services or inquire about water softener installation for your home or business, call us at (281) 994-6698 to schedule an appointment today.



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Why Does My Hot Water Never Last Long Enough?

It’s easy to take your water heater for granted. You turn on the tap or shower handle to the left, and expect hot water to pour out – at least, after a few seconds. But what happens if it never gets beyond merely tepid? Or, at the other extreme, if you’re almost scalded? On such an occasion, that tall cylinder in the corner of your utility room or other out-of-the-way spot asserts its importance in your household.

Our master plumbers at Adams and Son Plumbing have great respect for water heaters. That’s why we want you to be aware of yours, and recognize what the most common issues mean in terms of repair. 

While we offer the following symptoms and troubleshooting guide, we emphasize that making DIY repairs is not for everyone. As we always caution, watching YouTube videos is no guarantee your attempt will succeed – especially when dealing with an electrical appliance, not to mention an electrical appliance that’s in contact with water. Gas water heaters pose their own dangers, as natural gas can explode. Caution needs to be exercised to make sure the gas is shut off and only turned on when the pilot is lit.

Stopping those freezing showers

While no plumbing problem should be ignored, many people choose to live with a dripping faucet – at least until the drip becomes a steady stream, or jiggling the handle to find the sweet spot that stops it no longer works. However, cold running water all the time quickly (or immediately) becomes unacceptable. Finding and fixing the cause has a sense of urgency.

Be it an electric or a natural gas model, a hot water heater has basic components, and operates in a straightforward manner. Both types have an insulated storage tank jacket made of steel to reduce heat loss. Insulation is also provided between the storage tank and the jacket. The water in an electric water heater is heated by upper and lower heating elements; a gas water heater has a gas burner underneath the tank.

A faulty heating element is the most frequent culprit in water heater problems. Other common issues include improper settings, poor tank maintenance and high water pressure.

Writing for The Spruce, architect and builder Bob Formisano offers this troubleshooting guide, which we’ve summed up here. The full article includes detailed DIY steps for those who feel confident in their ability to safely take on such repairs.

No hot water – A water heater that produces no hot water may not be getting power, or it may have a tripped limit switch or one or more failed heating elements. First, check the water heater’s circuit breaker in the service panel to make sure it hasn’t tripped. If the breaker has tripped, switch it off, then switch it back on again. If the heater’s breaker did not trip (it is still on), try to reset the high-temperature limit on the heater.

Inadequate hot water – If your water heater is producing hot water, but not enough of it, your unit could be too small to meet the household’s hot water demand. Make sure the demand does not exceed the capacity of the water heater. The water heater should have 75 percent of its capacity as hot water. For example, a 40-gallon water heater is properly sized for a demand of 30 gallons. If the demand is too great for the heater capacity, try to limit the length of showers (and/or install a low-flow showerhead) and spread out dish-washing and laundry to different times of the day.

If your unit is not undersized, or it suddenly produces less hot water than it used to, one or both of its heating elements may have failed. A constant supply of lukewarm water during a shower is indicative of a defective upper heating element. Hot water that runs out quickly during a shower is indicative of a defective lower heating element.

Water temperature too hot – Water temperature that’s too high can be almost as frustrating as tepid or cold water – and can be dangerous to young children and the frail elderly. If you’re experiencing this problem, it’s possible that one or both of your water heater’s thermostats is set too high. Both thermostats should be set at the same temperature, which should be between 115 F and 125 F.

Leaks – Leaks from water heater tanks can be due to loose heating elements or to tank corrosion. Inspect the elements for looseness and, if necessary, tighten them with an element wrench. A corroded tank cannot be repaired and must be replaced. Turn off the power and water supply to the water heater, then drain the tank completely. Leaking water can cause significant damage, so it is important to repair the leak as soon as possible.

Discolored water and bad odor – If rust-colored water starts coming out of the tap, there could be corrosion inside your water heater tank or in the pipes. A rotten egg odor indicates the growth of bacteria in the tank. You may need to replace the anode rod inside the tank.

Noises coming from the tank – Are there noises coming from your water heater? Does it sound like a low rumbling or popping noise? Or maybe it’s a high pitched whine? The noise you’re hearing may be the sound of boiling water. Excessive buildup of sediment in the bottom of the tank can cause the bottom of the tank to overheat, boiling the water. The first solution to try is draining the tank to get rid of the sediment. If that doesn’t help, you may need to replace the tank.

What to look for with your water heater

Home repair expert Don Vandervort provides additional water heater diagnostic tips and instructions specific to electric models for HomeTips. Again, visit the article for complete instructions and precautions – such as shutting off power before performing work, and never work if there’s standing water pooled on the floor near the appliance.

Points to assess include the following:

  • Check to see if electricity is being delivered to the appliance.
  • Check the high-temperature cutoff in the water heater.
  • Check for water inside the compartment. A leak here means that your water heater may need to be replaced. 

When it’s time to call in the experts

Even for those who know their way around a water heater – such as hardcore home rehabbers – acknowledging your limitations is wise. And for those who don’t want to venture near their water heater, we hope we’ve given you a 101 education that will make you a better informed consumer when you do call a professional plumber for repair or replacement.

Adams and Son Plumbing is a family-owned business with over 50 years in plumbing service. A state-certified plumbing contractor, we have over three generations of master plumbing experience. Contact us to learn more and schedule a service appointment.






The post Why Does My Hot Water Never Last Long Enough? appeared first on Adams and Son Plumbing Services.

How to Estimate the Cost of Pipe Bursting in Sacramento


Having a damaged or broken pipe in your sewer system is one of the worst things that you can encounter. These unfortunate events tend to happen at the most inopportune moments and can cause financial hardship.

It is good to have an idea of which plumbing service you would call in a pinch, what services they offer, and how much repairs will cost.

When estimating the cost of pipe repair or replacement in your sewage system, you should write out a simple cost-benefit analysis. Your analysis should detail the pros and cons of various professional plumbing services, technologies, and methodologies.

For example, a professional plumbing service provider who uses trenchless technology to repair and replace pipes could cost you less than another provider who uses conventional methods for the same projects.

How can you estimate what the cost of pipe bursting in Sacramento will be for your sewage system? By creating a total cost-benefit analysis between the trenchless technology and conventional processes for pipe replacement, you can better understand the costs of pipe bursting. This will also help you decide which process is better for your needs and budget.

Your cost-benefit analysis should include things like:

  • The desired lifespan of the replacement pipe.
  • The duration of repairs or replacement.
  • The amount of labor involved.
  • The amount of disruption to your neighbors and landscaping anticipated.

These are just a few things to evaluate when estimating the cost of pipe bursting in Sacramento, but there are many more factors that can affect its value, like its multi-purpose functionality and versatility. Pipe bursting can replace any kind of damaged pipe, including:

  • PVC and other plastics
  • Clay
  • Cast Iron
  • Orangeburg pipes
  • Copper

The Estimated Costs of Pipe Bursting Vs. Traditional Pipe Replacement

The costs of pipe bursting and traditional pipe replacement can vary pretty drastically.

Pipe Bursting

Since pipe bursting is a trenchless technology, it doesn’t require digging, but instead requires a specialized trenchless process. Pipe bursting can actually enhance a pipe’s performance and seamlessly increase cleanliness and water flow. You won’t have to waste money on a hotel during repairs or professional landscapers, as only two small holes are dug during the bursting process – contained entry and exit points.

Traditional Pipe Replacement

With traditional pipe replacement, you could be waiting days for your property’s pipelines to be replaced. This, in turn, would require you to leave your home and temporarily take up residence in a hotel – which is an unnecessary additional expense.

Conventional plumbing repair and replacement processes also require an extensive amount of digging. Depending on which professional plumbing service you have hired, you may end up with a more expensive bill if they charge by the hour while excavating your lawn. Then, you would also have to consider the expense of hiring a professional landscaping service to put your lawn back together.

Who Performs Pipe Bursting in Sacramento?

Express Sewer & Drain are leaders of trenchless technology and are experienced professionals in the industry. If you are having plumbing or sewage problems and want to know how trenchless technology can help repair or replace your pipes, contact an experienced professional in Sacramento today.

Pipe Bursting Special Sacramento

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What to Do With a Sudden Pipe Leak

Pipe leaks can occur in the middle of the night or on a holiday, right when you least expect them to. While you’re panicking calling plumbers in Wayne, NJ, there are a few steps you can follow to stop the leaking and at least save some money on wasted water and property damage. So, take a deep breath and calm down, we’ll give you some reliable tips to address the problem at hand while you wait for your trusted service professional to take it from there.

From pipe clamps to pipe wraps, there are some solid solutions to pipe leaks that—while they won’t last for too long—will ultimately keep your pipes from leaking until your plumber can address them. Remember before you keep reading, that the best solution to plumbing leaks is to prevent them from occurring in the first place, with a quality plumbing maintenance plan.

Now that we’ve covered that, let’s address that leaky pipe!

Leaky Pipe Solutions

There are many different types of temporary solutions to a leaky pipe, but they heavily depend on the shape, size, and material of the pipe that you’re trying to help. Remember, these solutions are just that—temporary. Don’t believe for a second that these fixes will last longer than what a plumber can provide. You will have leaks again soon if you don’t have them addressed by a professional.

  • Pipe Clamps. These sturdy clamps are a handy tool to have when your pipe has sprung a leak. They’re used in submarines and on aircraft carriers, so you know they can at least save you money on wasted water for the time being.
  • Resins or Compounds. Usually in the form of a resin or a type of putty, that can be formed as a patch for a leak. They’re strong and provide a temporary alleviation from leaks.
  • Pipe Wraps. Another simple solution, they can wrap around a pipe to stop or at least slow a leak temporarily.
  • Rubber Pipe Connectors. If you’ve got a rubber pipe connector laying around, it can serve as a pretty good leak stopper for a little while.
  • Turn Off Your Water. It might not help if your leak is in a sewage line, but it’s still worth a try.

These are a few great temporary solutions that can help keep your leak at bay until the plumber gets in. Each of these items runs at a pretty affordable price in your local hardware store, so they’ll be pretty easy to procure in case you need them on the double.

How Long Will These Work?

Not very long. Pipe clamps, resins, and even pipe wraps will only stall the leaking or stop it for a short while. Often times pipes need to be replaced or repaired by a professional plumber in order for the leak to be permanently stopped. If you don’t contact your local plumber, your pipes will keep leaking until none of these quick fixes work anymore. Pipe problems can be caused by materials like cast iron that corrode after long periods of time, so experiencing leaks might be a sign that your pipe system needs to be replaced.

Don’t let your pipes keep leaking, fix your plumbing system today by contacting MarGo Plumbing Heating Cooling Inc.

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Is It Time to Let Go of Your Water Heater?

water-heater-issueCould you imagine what your life would be like without your water heater? Certainly, you’d no longer want to take those 15 minute long showers! You see, your water heater plays an important role in your comfort, so of course, you don’t want to take it for granted!

Unfortunately, there will come a day when you need to replace your old, worn-out water heater with a brand new system. Don’t be too sad though, a brand new water heater will do wonders for your comfort and your budget. Below, we have listed some of the telltale signs that your system needs to be replaced. All you’ve got to do is keep reading! (And of course, remember to contact our team for expert water heater installation!)

Is It Time for a Replacement?

Like we mentioned above, there are a number of signs that suggest it’s time to say goodbye to your water heater. These signs include:

  1. The Age of the System: How long has the water heater been in your house? Most systems can last from 15 to 20 years. If a water heater is older than 20 years, it’s usually better to put in a new system, even if the current water heater is working adequately. A decline due to age is going to start soon, and it’s best to get ahead of it with a new water heater.
  2. Loss of Hot Water Volume: Are you no longer getting the amount of hot water in your household that you’d expect? Have you and your family members been fighting each morning to be the first to take a shower? These are warnings of a water heater that’s in decline and should be swapped out for a new one.
  3. Rising Heating Bills: Hot water accounts for most of the heating energy used in your home. If the hot water heater starts to work inefficiently due to its age, then it’s a good idea to have it replaced.
  4. Corrosion: You shouldn’t see corrosion on your water heater until it’s extremely old. If it does appear, it usually can’t be repaired and you must get a new water heater.
  5. Reddish Discoloration in the Water: If you turn on taps and see a reddish tint to the hot water, it means the inside of the tank is rusting out.
  6. Too Many Repairs: If you’re getting into the habit of calling for repairs for the water heater more than twice a year, that’s too often. Rather than continuing to throw money at a water heater that’s on its last legs, arrange for a new installation.

Call in a Professional

When the time comes to replace your water heater, you want to make absolutely certain that you’ve hired a professional plumber for the job — otherwise, you could be left with a whole slew of other issues. Trust us, when it comes to your comfort, you don’t want to take any risks!

Schedule your water heater services with the team at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. today! 

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Tips to Unfreeze Your AC Unit

Using a FanWith average summer temperatures in the mid-to-high 80s, Pittsburgh doesn’t often experience searing hot temperatures. Even so, if you live in Pittsburgh, you enjoy turning on the AC after a long day. Have you ever turned on the AC and felt nothing but warm air? It’s disappointing! If your AC unit pushes warm air, it could mean the unit is frozen. Yes, even though it’s summer, it happens. Today, we’re talking about how to unfreeze a frozen AC unit.

First Things First

If your AC unit blows warm air, first make sure you have the thermostat on the correct setting. It’s not uncommon for people to forget to move the thermostat from heat to cool. Really! If you’ve determined that isn’t the issue, look at the outside of the unit. If you see ice or frost on the coils or on the back of a window unit, it’s frozen. Time to turn off the AC. Even if it’s cooling slightly despite the ice you see forming, turn it off. Be aware that you may or may not be able to see evidence of ice. If the system is frozen, you can’t unfreeze it if it’s running. If you’re not comfortable working on your AC unit yourself, call for local furnace repair.

If Air Flow Is Restricted

One reason an AC unit freezes is because the evaporator gets too cold. This happens if there isn’t enough warm, unconditioned air moving over the evaporator coils. Several situations can cause restricted air flow. A clogged or dirty filter is the first thing you should check. A filter check and replacement is an easy fix. Always turn the thermostat from cool to off, then turn on the fan. Leave the fan running for about 3-4 hours. The reason you use the fan setting is to allow warm unconditioned air inside your home to blow on the frozen coils. This speeds up the thawing process. Finally, check the air filter. If it’s dirty, replace it. Since you’re checking for restricted air flow, go ahead and make sure your return vents aren’t blocked. Sometimes furniture, drapes, and even boxes block the vents.

ThermostatFreezing Caused by Low Refrigerant

Over time, low refrigerant in your AC unit can cause ice buildup on the evaporator coils. If you have low refrigerant levels, you have a refrigerant leak. The most obvious sign of a refrigerant leak is a hissing noise coming from the refrigerant lines. Warm air coming through the vents is another sign. Finally, if your electric bills are going way up, it could indicate a refrigerant leak. You can unfreeze the unit on your own and the instructions are the same as those listed above. But if you think you have a refrigerant leak, call for electric furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA.

If you’ve tried these steps and you can’t resolve the problem, let Stahl Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning help. Call today and we’ll come out and troubleshoot your AC unit, furnace, and much more.


The post Tips to Unfreeze Your AC Unit appeared first on Stahl Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning.

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