Month: January 2020

Is a Tankless Water Heater Worth the Investment?

Mother washing baby in sink

Storage water heaters may be the norm, but they are far from your only option. In fact, you may be considering installing a tankless water heater. You’ve heard the upgrade will result in energy savings, but is a tankless water heater really the right choice for you? Here are the top benefits and things to know before going tankless.

Tankless Water Heaters Save Energy

This is where tankless water heaters shine. They only heat water when you call for it, eliminating the standby heat loss associated with storing hot water 24/7. Powerful electric or gas-powered heating elements come to life when you turn on the hot water faucet. Only then does the tankless water heater use energy.

If your household consumes 40 gallons of hot water or less per day, this enhanced operation can increase efficiency by 24% to 34%. Even if your family uses closer to 80 gallons of hot water daily, you can still enjoy 8% to 14% energy savings.

Tankless Water Heaters Provide Endless Hot Water

With a storage water heater, you have to wait at least 10 minutes between each shower for the hot water supply to replenish. Showering immediately after running the dishwasher is also out because this activity uses up a lot of hot water and drains the tank significantly. It’s also impossible to take long, hot showers if your tank is undersized.

In contrast, tankless water heaters require no wait time between hot water activities. Heating water on-demand means you have an endless supply of it. Your entire family can take showers back to back and never run out of hot water.

Just be aware that tankless water heaters have a lower flow rate. Compared to the 7.5 to 9.5 gallons per minute that storage tanks can pump out, tankless units average flow rates between 2.5 and 5 gallons per minute. This reduces the ability to perform hot water activities simultaneously.

Fortunately, it’s easy to counter this disadvantage. Simply avoid showering while the dishwasher is running, or install smaller point-of-use tankless units in the kitchen and bathrooms. Another advantage of doing this is that the water heats up almost instantly, limiting water waste at the tap.

Tankless Water Heaters Boast a Long Life Span

Storage water heaters only last about a decade. Once you hit the 10-year mark, it’s time to start considering your replacement options. However, tankless systems often come with a 12-year warranty and easily last 20 years or longer.

This impressive life span—combined with the energy savings you enjoy year over year—helps you recuperate the higher upfront cost required to purchase and install a tankless water heater. If you’re unsure about your return on investment, your plumber can help you crunch the numbers before you make your final decision.

Tankless Water Heaters Have a Small Footprint

Traditional water heaters are usually 5 feet tall and 2 feet in diameter. They take up precious storage space, especially if you live in a small condo or townhouse. On the other hand, tankless units typically measure about 20 inches wide by 28 inches tall by 10 inches deep. This means, instead of taking up 15.7 square feet the way a storage tank does, a tankless hot water heater only takes up 3.2 square feet. Plus, the unit mounts to the wall, getting it up and out of the way.

Ready to Replace Your Water Heater? Contact Us Today!

After learning more about tankless water heaters, you may be interested in installing one in your home.

To request tankless water heater installation in the MD, DC, VA, PA, or DE area, please call Len The Plumber at 800-950-4619. We offer same day visits and emergency services for no extra charge!

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5 Reasons Your Water Smells Bad


Most homeowners don’t think much about their water until they notice something out of the ordinary. While it can be easy to dismiss unusual odors, it’s important to remember that bad-smelling water is a telltale sign that there’s a problem in your water supply. Strange odors don’t usually go away on their own, and left untended, you might even grow accustomed to the smell and not realize that it’s getting worse. It’s best not to take chances when your tap water smells bad.

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Why Is My Water Heater Making That Noise?

Rubber ducky floating in a bath tub

You may not realize it, but your water heater is one of the hardest-working appliances in your home. After all, it must keep water hot and ready to use 24/7. It’s easy to forget this because your water heater works silently in the basement, garage, or utility closet.

If you’ve noticed your water heater popping or making other strange sounds lately, you might be concerned—and rightly so! Here are some common water heater noises and what they might mean.

Water Heater Popping Sounds

Do you hear loud popping, cracking, clanking, or other similar noises coming from your water heater? Mineral buildup is the most likely cause. This is the result of hard water depositing calcium and magnesium carbonate over the years.

A popping water heater could be warning you that a thick layer of sediment is building up on the bottom of the tank, blocking heat transfer and lowering water heater efficiency in the process. Ignoring this problem could increase your water heating costs and shorten the life span of the appliance, leading to premature failure.

Fortunately, a plumber can fix this problem by performing water heater maintenance. We recommend this once a year to help your hard-working appliance operate efficiently and reliably for many years.

Water Heater Hissing Sounds

Electric water heaters are prone to making this sound. It’s another sign of mineral deposits, as the heating electrodes may hiss when they heat up if they’re covered with sediment.

Water Heater Banging or Booming Sounds

If you hear banging or booming at startup, turn off your water heater and call a plumber right away for an emergency repair. These sounds could mean that the gas or oil is reigniting when the burner starts, a dangerous situation that increases the chance of explosions.

Sometimes, banging or booming sounds simply mean your water heater is experiencing higher-than-normal thermal expansion. When this is the case, the noise usually occurs when the appliance has to reheat a large quantity of water, such as after the tank has been depleted or turned back on after you get home from vacation. When in doubt, call a plumber to take a look. It may be necessary to add an expansion tank to make the noise go away.

Water Heater Screeching or Whistling Sounds

These strange noises may be unnerving, but the cause is usually harmless and easy to fix. First, check for a partly closed control valve at the water heater inlet. Then, consider the size of the exhaust flue. It might be causing a resonant frequency, creating an unpleasant noise when you turn up the temperature on a tankless water heater. A plumber can resize the exhaust system if necessary to eliminate the sound.

Water Heater Clicking, Ticking, or Tapping Sounds

In most cases, these noises are considered normal. They are the result of thermal expansion as the water heater operates. The sounds most likely come from the heat trap installed in the hot water supply piping downstream from the water heater itself.

If the noises are bothersome, you may want a plumber to check the routing of your hot water piping. If hot water must pass through too-small openings, excessive clicking, ticking, or tapping may occur. Expanding the opening may help.

Schedule Water Heater Repair

Whether your water heater is making a popping noise or some other sound, Len The Plumber can set things right. Plumber is in our name, and it’s all we do! Our fully trained, licensed, and certified professionals can fix any water heater problem, so call us with complete confidence in our abilities. If it turns out the appliance has reached the end of its life span, we can suggest a suitable water heater replacement.

To schedule water heater repair in the MD, DC, VA, PA, or DE area, please call us at 800-950-4619. We offer same day visits and emergency services at no extra cost!

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3 Common Furnace Problems that Raise Your Bill

Furnaces are some of the most affordable and efficient heating systems we have available. A furnace can be installed and run for an entire year at half the cost of some other heating systems, depending on the climate and the model. This means your furnace should be well-maintained, professionally installed, and quickly repaired whenever a problem arises.

All that being said, sometimes there are problems with a furnace that can ultimately make them cost more than they’re worth. Hopefully, if you weren’t aware of these few furnace issues, we’d like to take some time to ensure your furnace is running as affordably and efficiently as possible. Remember, if you think your furnace is consuming more fuel than you believe it should, or if it’s just costing more money than what it used to for comfortable heating in your home, call our team for furnace service in Clifton, NJ.

Keep Your Bills Low

When we mention your heating bill, we’re talking about the amount of money you pay each month for fuel or energy that your heater uses to run. A poorly running furnace, or a furnace that isn’t correctly installed will end up costing more even in monthly heating costs than your average well-maintained furnace. Let’s take a look at why.

The Wrong Fuel Source

We typically service two types of furnaces, gas and electric. The major difference between these two systems is the price of fuel or energy that your system will need to run. Natural gas tends to be cheaper but requires gas piping in order for you to appreciate the affordable comfort. Electric furnaces just require electricity, which is convenient but can end up costing more in running costs than a gas furnace. So, if you’ve got an electric furnace, you might see a more expensive heating bill. Call a professional if you think it’s time to switch the type of furnace you have, or at least explore some other efficient options like radiant heating.

Outdated Technology

Furnaces typically run anywhere from 10-15 years before they’re seriously outdated. When we say outdated, we don’t just mean more prone to breaking down—we also mean that it will run less efficiently. Don’t be surprised if your 20-year-old furnace still works, but costs twice as much to run each month than a replacement system would. If your furnace is getting up there in age and you suspect that this could be related to your heightened heating bills, give a professional a call today.

Neglected Maintenance

Furnaces require routine maintenance every year. This service is valuable because it allows for a trained service technician to inspect your system, fix any minor issues, and tell you when there is an upcoming repair. Without this service, you’ll be gambling with the life and efficiency of your system, and your heating bills might increase as a result.

Regardless of what you think the problem is, a professional HVAC technician will always be able to pinpoint the problem with your high heating bills and provide a solution.

Contact the team at MarGo Plumbing Heating Cooling Inc. for your tailored home solution to any heating problems.

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A Few Ways to Save Water

plumbing-showerhead-running-waterSo, you want to do your part in conserving water? Great! You’ve certainly come to the right place. Our team is your go-to for all things plumbing, and we’ve got plenty of knowledge to share!

There are many reasons why homeowners wish to conserve water — perhaps they’re thinking about the environment? Or maybe, they’re concerned about their high water bills? Either way, we can help because saving water is a lot easier than you might think!

There are a number of ways that you can cut back on your water usage, and below, we have outlined some of them for you. All you have to do is keep reading to find out more (and, of course, remember to schedule your plumbing installation services in Orlando with our team!)

Here’s What You Can Do

There are plenty of ways to conserve water, including:

Schedule leak detection

If you find that you are paying more and more for water, it might just be that you’ve got a leak. Since it’s difficult to know for certain that you have a leak until there’s water all over your floors, you’ll need to call a professional plumber for leak detection. The sooner this is done the better as it makes gallons of difference.

Upgrade to a low-flow toilet

The toilet uses more water than any other fixture inside your home. In fact, it can account for 40% of indoor water use! Therefore, installing a low-flow toilet is a great way to save water. Rather than using 3 gallons of water per flush, like a normal toilet would, a low-flow toilet only uses 1.28 gallons per flush.

Install low-flow fixtures

Why not go crazy with installing low-flow plumbing fixtures in your house? Not only can you install low-flow toilets, but you can also add low-flow showerheads and faucets to your plumbing system.

Only run the dishwasher with full loads

You might have heard that a dishwasher uses less water than washing dishes and utensils by hand. This is true, and the newest models of dishwashers are even more efficient at water use. However, you’ll end up wasting money if you run only small or half loads at a time. Let the dishes fill up the dishwasher racks before running a load.

Shorter showers

Yes, you’ve heard this one before. But it bears repeating because people often let the idea go because—well, long showers are the best! But, each minute you can cut off your shower time will save 2 ½ gallons. If it helps, set a timer!

Ask a Professional for Help!

Of course, if you are interested in installing any low-flow plumbing fixtures in your home, or if you are looking for even MORE ways to save, then do not hesitate to contact a professional plumber for help! Trust us, any reputable plumbing company will be happy to help you save water and save money! So, what are you waiting for? Get on the phone and contact a pro today! You won’t regret it.

To learn more about water conservation and how you can do your part, contact the team at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. A trusted plumbing company in Central Florida. 

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Factors Affecting the Cost of Replacing a Water Heater

Hot Water Heater Maintenance To live comfortably at home during the winter, you’ll need your water heater. But, it’s susceptible to wear. Once that happens, you’ll end up with a faulty unit that doesn’t produce warm water. Calling for a heating furnace repair in Pittsburgh, PA, is the best thing to do, but sometimes it has to be replaced.

When this happens, you might be tempted to cut costs by buying a generic unit from the store and installing it yourself, but this can lead to serious problems. If not done right, it can leak carbon monoxide. This isn’t just a nuisance because it causes serious health problems when inhaled.

To avoid this, consider hiring a professional for installation. Here are some factors that help you calculate the cost:

Water Heater Type

The replacement you’ll buy affects the cost. Think whether you’re getting a tank or tankless model. The latter has a smaller build that lets you save space. But, it comes at a higher price.

You’ll also have to choose if you want an electric, gas, or solar-powered unit. This usually depends on what you used previously. You can always have it changed, but this will increase the cost of replacement.

Unit Size

You’ll want a unit that caters to all bathrooms. If you have more than a couple, then you’ll have to be ready to buy a larger model.

Most appliances in your kitchen, bathroom, and laundry area use hot water. If you’re planning to have all of them connected to the heater, this will cost you more as well.

Location of the Unit

Water Heater The space where the heater will be placed increases the cost of installation since it affects the labor needed from a heating repair company. Usually, those in accessible areas will incur a smaller fee than those that have to be brought into tight spaces. Similarly, the price will go up if you want the unit somewhere far from the main waterlines, like a barn or shed.

Where you place it changes how a unit should be positioned. A gas-powered heater in the garage must be raised at least 18 inches, which means you’ll need a higher base. This shows that as the number of processes increase, so does the cost.

Cost of Permit

Normally, replacing a residential heater requires a permit from the local government. The cost will depend on the on-site inspection and any changes or upgrades needed for your water and electrical lines.

When you ask for an estimate, check if it includes the permit. If it does, you don’t have to think about it anymore because the papers will be managed by the service provider.

Disposal of the Old Heater

Disposing of your old unit may not be included in the estimate, so you have to look for someone who can haul out the appliance. You can contact a service provider of junk disposal to get it for you. This will add extra expenses.

Having a functional water heater at home is crucial. When you’re planning to have one installed, do your research first. It’s a hefty investment, after all. This way, you’ll be aware of how much you have to spend and whether it fits your budget. Call Stahl Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning to learn more. They’re professionals who do heating and furnace repair from Pittsburgh, PA.

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A to Z Statewide Plumbing Earns 2019 Angie’s List Super Service Award

Angie's List 2019 Winner

West Park, FL, January 22, 2020 – A to Z Statewide Plumbing is proud to announce that it has earned the home service industry’s coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award (SSA). This award honors service professionals who have maintained exceptional service ratings and reviews on Angie’s List in 2019.

“Service pros that receive our Angie’s List Super Service Award represent the best in our network, who are consistently making great customer service their mission,” said Angie’s List Founder Angie Hicks. “These pros have provided exceptional service to our members and absolutely deserve recognition for the exemplary customer service they exhibited in the past year.”

Angie’s List Super Service Award 2019 winners have met strict eligibility requirements, which include maintaining an “A” rating in overall grade, recent grade and review period grade. The SSA winners must be in good standing with Angie’s List and undergo additional screening.

“The staff at A to Z Statewide Plumbing is committed to excellence in customer service, stated Office Manager – Aaron Atkins.” He went on to mention, “To be considered for the Angie’s List Super Service Award 2019 is an honor in itself, but to have remained a continual recipient over the course of the past several years just goes to show how dedicated our staff is in providing our customers with a truly exceptional experience. We hope that our efforts meet or exceed the expectations of our Angie’s List clientele and that once the service call is completed, we have found ourselves with a customer for life.”

A to Z Statewide Plumbing has been listed on Angie’s List since 2007. This is the sixth year (2009, 2011, 2016, 2017, 2018) A to Z Statewide Plumbing has received this honor.

Service company ratings are updated continually on Angie’s List as new, verified consumer reviews are submitted. Companies are graded on an A through F scale in multiple fields ranging from price to professionalism to punctuality.

For over two decades Angie’s List has been a trusted name for connecting consumers to top-rated service professionals. Angie’s List provides unique tools and support designed to improve the local service experience for both consumers and service professionals.


In business since 1981, A to Z Statewide Plumbing knows A to Z about plumbing and is dedicated to providing their customers with quality service at competitive prices. Our highly trained technicians will service all of your plumbing and septic system needs backed by our unparalleled guarantee.

A to Z Statewide Plumbing provides service to residences, high-rise condominiums, restaurants, and institutional buildings – from simply replacing a faucet washer to re-piping an entire building’s water supply system. Our skilled plumbers are mobilized in fully-equipped service vehicles to ensure convenience and reduce wasted time.

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How Little Leaks Can Lead to Big Repair Costs

A leaky faucet is a common nuisance. Easily repaired by those with remedial DIY skills, it’s considered a minor issue. However, not all plumbing leaks that start out small are so obvious – or quick to fix! Those that go undetected eventually escalate to cause big problems. Our master plumbers at Adams and Son Plumbing have seen it all during our more than 60 years in business, so we offer the following danger signs to look for and consequences you can expect if they’re ignored. In this case, ignorance is definitely not bliss!

Mold living in your walls

If you’re a fan of cable TV shows about rehabbing or flipping homes, you’ve seen vacant properties with extensive mold damage. This is the result of an ongoing pipe leak behind a wall or under the foundation slab. The water leak dampens the drywall, eventually seeping throughout, causing wet spots that are evidenced by water stains. If the leak isn’t repaired, mold and mildew grow and spread throughout the affected area.

Not only is this unsightly, but mold is a serious health hazard – especially for the elderly and those with respiratory issues. The presence of black mold (the most dangerous) requires not only the services of a mold remediation company, but also the removal of large wall sections. Mold remediation can cost from about $500 to $3,000, while replacing 100 square feet of drywall can cost at least $400.

One of the responsibilities of home ownership is to be aware of your home’s environment. A musty odor is the first indication of a behind-the-wall water leak. Don’t make the mistake of trying to cover the odor with an air freshener. Try to determine the room in which the odor is strongest, then call a plumber to locate and repair the leak. Yes, you will have to call a home repair professional to repair the drywall and/or tile that needs to be removed in order to access the pipe. But attending to it sooner rather than later will prevent further damage and additional expense.

The high cost of water damage repair

We now present what we hope is compelling evidence of what happens when a leak goes undetected and the resulting water damage unaddressed. The good people at Reliable Restoration of Norcross, GA, have also seen it all, and describe it in an informative article that we summarize here. We encourage you to read it in its entirety.

The main points are as follow:

Water damage lowers the value of your home – When it comes time to sell your home, visible water damage will be listed in the home inspection report, adversely affecting the selling price and raising a red flag to potential buyers, who will most likely continue their house hunt.

Dripping water can lead to holes in your concrete – Even a small leak can wear through concrete, eventually causing major damage to your home’s foundation.

Water damage can ruin your electrical system – Water and electricity don’t mix. A water leak that makes its way to your home’s electrical system can cause shorts, damage circuits and create a fire hazard.

Break down of carpet – A water leak can saturate your home’s subflooring, carpet pad and carpeting, causing them to break down. Replacing the carpet and carpet pad is expensive enough, but if the subflooring is also affected (as it probably would be), you’ll incur additional repair costs.

Water weakens wooden floors and walls – Wood readily absorbs water, resulting in warping and buckling. According to Angie’s List, hardwood floors cost between $12 and $30 per square foot to replace, after the affected area has been cleaned and the leak repaired.

Water damage can ruin your drywall – With even minimal exposure to water, drywall can quickly turn brittle, swell and facilitate the growth of mold and mildew – the hazards of which were described earlier.

In addition, leaks in your plumbing system can damage plumbing fixtures – such as sinks, faucets and showerheads. Depending on the brand and material you choose, replacing these fixtures can cost you anywhere on average from $100 to $500.

Repair for less, or pay more later

As we covered in our blog post – “How to Locate Plumbing Leaks” – being proactive and observant is essential in addressing plumbing issues before they get out of hand. Keep your eyes open for the following:

  • Leaks around toilets, sinks, tubs, showerheads and faucets.
  • Damp areas of carpeting.
  • Water stains on walls or ceilings.
  • A rattling sound from your kitchen faucet – as well as discolored water from the tap.


If you notice a decrease in water pressure, call your water utility to ask if there is an issue affecting your service. If not, you could have a leak. Check your water bill for a sudden increase, even though your water use hasn’t changed. And pay attention to musty odors.

Ultimately, there is no such thing as a “little” plumbing leak. Adams and Son Plumbing is dedicated to serving Central Florida homes and businesses with the highest level of quality and experience. We are family-owned and operated, and all of our plumbers are state-certified master plumbers. Contact us to get – and keep – your home’s plumbing in top repair.


The post How Little Leaks Can Lead to Big Repair Costs appeared first on Adams and Son Plumbing Services.

8 Telltale Signs You Could Have a Broken Sewer Line

broken sewer pipe_269846909

The old saying “out of sight, out of mind” isn’t very good advice when it comes to your household plumbing. After all, hidden leaks not only have the potential to run up your water bill and cause significant property damage; they can also lead to dangerous health problems when left unrepaired. For all these reasons, it’s good to identify and repair leaks as quickly as possible, especially when it comes to sewer pipes. Read More

What Can Build Up in Your Drains When You Aren’t Looking

drain-cleaning-diagramWe don’t mean to imply you need to stare into the drains in your house as often as you can spare the time. We mean that while you go about your daily routines of cooking, showering, bathing, and cleaning, imagining the drains are just fine, they may be picking up debris that will create slow or clogged drains in the future.

Below is a list of the most common build-up that forms in drains without you knowing about it—until something goes wrong.

Soap Scum

A strange term: if it’s soap, how can it be scummy? The truth is that it’s neither soap nor scum. It’s a mineral layer that occurs because of the reaction between soap and minerals in the water. The problem is worse in hard water, but it can be trouble in any household. Soap scum often builds up in shower and bathroom sink drains, which have a large volume of soap flowing down them. Soap scum is obstinate and hard to remove, making it one of the more difficult forces causing drain clogging. It also causes acidic reactions when it comes into contact with chemical drain cleaners, potentially damaging the drainpipe material. This is one of several reasons we recommend never using chemical drain cleaners.


No, not mist along the ground. FOG is an acronym for fats, oils, grease. These cooking materials and cooking byproducts are liquid when hot, but turn solid as they cool. Because people often poor FOG down kitchen drains and garbage disposals, a thick layer builds up that’s tough to remove. Not only can FOG stop-up a drain, it creates unpleasant odors and can lead to drain flies.


The great enemy of the bathtub or shower drain! Hair clumps are thick and easily catch other items in the drains, building up into a snarl that will take a professional plumber to remove. The best way to avoid trouble with hair in drains is to put drain covers or drain strainers over shower and bathroom sink drains. You’ll have to routinely clean them out, but you’ll save yourself plenty of trouble in the future.

Moist towelettes

Never flush towelettes down the toilet. No matter if the word “flushable” is on the packaging. Fewer items can clog up the plumbing faster—including the sewer line itself—than wipes sticking together and turning into an emulsified mass.

The Trusted Plumber: The Contractor to Call for Drain Cleaning

If you’ve got trouble with one or more of the above blocking your drains, call us for professional drain cleaning methods.

Why are we “The Trusted Plumber”? Because we stand behind our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Because we offer up-front pricing so customers won’t be caught with unpleasant surprises. Because we’re members of both the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association and Quality Service Contractors. You only have to schedule service with us to see why so many homeowners trust us for drain cleaning in Glendale, AZ and many other plumbing services.

The Trusted Plumber serves Glendale, AZ, and the surrounding areas. Schedule drain cleaning with our professionals.

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