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Critical Plumbing Emergency Tips


It’s easy to panic in an emergency. In our frantic urgency, we can make things worse, or take too long to take simple steps that mitigate the damage. In a plumbing emergency, that time could mean the difference between a minor mess and a flooded bathroom. 

Knowing what steps you should take can make your reaction time much faster and help you avoid missteps. Familiarize yourself with these tips, and the next time you have a plumbing emergency, you’ll be better prepared to do what’s necessary.

Know How to Shut the Water Off

It’s generally pretty easy to locate the water shut-off to various fixtures. But in the panic of an emergency, your haste can make this harder. Before any emergency occurs, go through your home and check where the shut-off valves are. If something breaks or leaks, you’ll be able to stop water from flowing to that particular section of your plumbing.

You should also know where your main water shut-off is. If you have a leak or break in a section of plumbing you can’t shut off individually, you can cut off the water supply to your whole home. This will be located where the water enters your house, generally in the basement on the side of your house facing the street, or facing your well if you don’t have municipal water.

Know How to Handle Frozen Pipes

When winter temperatures get severe, frozen pipes are a common plumbing emergency. If this happens to you, the first thing to know is not to try to defrost the pipe yourself with a space heater or hair dryer. This can cause such rapid expansion that it triggers a sudden rupture. Instead, call for an emergency plumber in Pine Brook, NJ.

To avoid having this happen at all, your best bet is to never lower your home’s heat below 55 degrees, even when you’re going to be away and don’t need your home to be warm.

Don’t Hesitate—Get Help

If you’re not sure whether something should be considered an emergency, err on the side of caution. Get professional plumbing help as quickly as you can. Blocked drains throughout your house can quickly turn into flooding sewage if you don’t take it seriously. A trickling leak can pour gallons of water into your subfloor in a matter of hours. 

Another time to get emergency plumbing help is when the problem is an emergency to you personally. A child’s lost tooth or grandma’s engagement ring being lost down the sink may not flood your home, but if it matters deeply to you, it matters to us, too. Stop using that drain, cover it so nobody else unknowingly uses it, and call for help.

Rely on Qualified Professionals

It’s all too easy for something to go seriously wrong when people attempt DIY plumbing, and that can result in serious emergencies and water damage. Avoid this by having a plumber you trust and relying on them for quick, effective, and safe solutions to your plumbing problems.

Contact MarGo Plumbing Heating Cooling Inc. today with any questions about your plumbing!

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Everything You Need to Know About Municipal Drainage Systems

municipal drainage system

Municipal drainage systems may not always be in the spotlight, but they play a pivotal role in our daily lives. These intricate networks of pipes, channels, and infrastructure are responsible for managing rainwater, wastewater, and storm runoff in our cities and communities

Understanding municipal drainage systems is essential for anyone who cares about urban planning and environmental sustainability or for those who simply want to know more about the unseen infrastructure that keeps our cities functioning smoothly. Read More

Are there any eco-friendly plumbing options available?

In an era where environmental consciousness is becoming increasingly important, it’s essential to consider eco-friendly options in all aspects of life, including plumbing. The field of plumbing has seen significant eco-friendly advancements, aimed not only at conserving water but also at reducing energy consumption and minimizing waste. This resource will explore various sustainable plumbing options that can help us to build a greener and more sustainable world.

Exploring Eco-Friendly Plumbing Solutions for a Sustainable Future

Low-Flow Fixtures

Low-flow fixtures are designed to reduce the amount of water that flows through them, thereby conserving water and energy. These fixtures, which include faucets, showerheads, and toilets, use advanced technology to provide the same level of performance while using significantly less water. For example, a conventional showerhead may use up to 5.5 gallons of water per minute, while a low-flow model uses no more than 2.5 gallons per minute – a reduction of more than 50%. Similarly, low-flow toilets use only 1.28 gallons per flush compared to the traditional models that use 3.5 to 7 gallons per flush. By choosing to install low-flow fixtures in your home, you can significantly reduce your water usage, thereby reducing your environmental footprint and saving money on your utility bills.

Dual Flush Toilets

Dual flush toilets are another eco-friendly plumbing option. This toilet model comes with two flushing options: a half flush for liquid waste and a full flush for solid waste. The half flush uses significantly less water than the full flush, making it an ideal choice for conserving water. For instance, while a conventional toilet uses approximately 1.6 gallons of water per flush, the half flush in a dual-flush toilet uses only about 0.8 gallons. This system gives the user control over their water usage and can lead to substantial water savings over time. Not only does this help to conserve our planet’s most vital resource, but it also results in lower utility bills, making dual flush toilets a win-win for both the environment and the consumer.

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters, also known as on-demand water heaters, are an eco-friendly plumbing option that can significantly reduce energy consumption. Unlike traditional water heaters that continuously heat and store water in a tank, tankless water heaters heat water only as it’s needed, which eliminates the energy waste associated with maintaining a tank of hot water.

When a hot water tap is turned on, cold water travels through a pipe into the unit, where a gas burner or an electric element heats the water. As a result, tankless water heaters deliver a constant supply of hot water, and there’s no need to wait for a storage tank to fill up with enough hot water.

According to, for homes that use 41 gallons or less of hot water daily, tankless water heaters can be 24%–34% more energy efficient than conventional storage tank water heaters. They can be 8%–14% more energy efficient for homes that use a lot of hot water — around 86 gallons per day.

Furthermore, tankless water heaters have a longer lifespan, typically lasting more than 20 years, compared to traditional water heaters, which usually last 10 to 15 years. This means fewer units ending up in landfills and a lower environmental impact over time. By choosing a tankless water heater, you can not only save energy and reduce your utility bills, but also contribute to a more sustainable planet.

PEX Piping

PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) piping is a relatively new entrant in the plumbing industry, quickly gaining popularity due to its eco-friendly and efficient qualities. Unlike traditional piping materials such as copper or PVC, PEX piping is flexible and requires fewer connectors and fittings, which leads to easier installation and less potential for leaks. This reduction in potential water loss not only conserves water but also saves on repair costs. Moreover, PEX pipes have a high resistance to scale and chlorine, ensuring a long lifespan and reducing the need for replacement. These pipes also have superior insulation properties, minimizing heat loss when used in hot water applications, leading to energy savings. Considering these benefits, PEX piping is an excellent choice for those looking to incorporate eco-friendly plumbing solutions in their homes or businesses.

Rainwater Harvesting Systems

Rainwater harvesting is a sustainable practice that involves capturing and storing rainwater for reuse, instead of allowing it to run off. These systems can be simple, such as barrels placed under downspouts, or more complex, involving pumps and filtration systems. Rainwater harvesting systems are highly beneficial for multiple reasons. Firstly, they reduce the reliance on municipal water supplies, thereby conserving a significant amount of water. Secondly, the harvested rainwater can be used for various purposes such as irrigation, flushing toilets, washing clothes, or even drinking if properly treated. Additionally, these systems can help to manage stormwater runoff, decreasing the risk of floods and soil erosion. Implementing a rainwater harvesting system can significantly contribute to water conservation, leading to lower water bills, and promoting a more sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle.

By taking advantage of these eco-friendly plumbing options, homeowners and businesses can help ensure a more sustainable future. By reducing water consumption and energy use, we can protect our natural resources while also cutting costs. With careful consideration and the right materials, plumbing systems can become much greener. 


What are the signs of a plumbing emergency?

Recognizing the signs of a plumbing emergency can be crucial in preventing minor problems from escalating into major disasters. Unattended plumbing issues not only lead to extensive property damage but also pose significant health risks, emphasizing the importance of an immediate response. This article will guide you through the key indicators of a plumbing emergency, aiding in quick identification and prompt action.

Recognizing the Signs of a Plumbing Emergency

Sudden Drop in Water Pressure

A sudden drop in water pressure is often the first indication of a plumbing emergency. You may notice this when you turn on your sink, shower, or other water fixtures and the flow of water is significantly less than usual. It could be localized, affecting only one area of your home, or widespread, signaling a bigger issue within your entire plumbing system. This could be due to a leak, a burst pipe, or even a problem with the local water supply. Regularly monitoring your water pressure, particularly if it seems to be decreasing over time, will help you identify potential problems early on. It’s always a good idea to call in professionals for a thorough examination when you experience a substantial drop in water pressure.

No Water Supply

Experiencing no water supply at all is a clear sign of a potential plumbing emergency. If you turn on your faucets and no water comes out, it could mean there’s a major issue with your home’s plumbing system that needs immediate attention. This could be due to a serious blockage in your pipes, a main water line break, or even a problem with the water supply from your local water company. It’s essential to check with your neighbors to see if they’re experiencing the same issue. If they aren’t, the problem is likely localized to your home. During winter, no water supply could also indicate frozen pipes, which is a serious issue that can lead to burst pipes if not addressed promptly. Whenever you encounter situations where there’s no water supply, it’s advisable to seek professional help at the earliest to prevent potential damage.

Overflowing Toilet

An overflowing toilet is a distinct and immediately noticeable sign of a plumbing emergency. It typically results from a severe blockage in the toilet or the main sewer line. The most common cause is flushing inappropriate items, such as sanitary products, diapers, or too much toilet paper. When the toilet overflow occurs, it can quickly lead to a messy, unsanitary situation that poses a risk to both your property and health. In cases where plunging doesn’t rectify the situation, or if the toilet overflows frequently, it’s a clear signal that professional intervention is necessary. A licensed plumber can accurately identify the cause of the problem and propose an effective solution. Do not ignore an overflowing toilet, as it often indicates more serious issues with your sewer system that require immediate attention.

Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes constitute a serious plumbing emergency, particularly in regions with harsh winter conditions. The issue arises when water present within the pipes freezes and expands, leading to considerable pressure build-up. This pressure can cause the pipes to crack or burst, leading to significant water leakage once the ice thaws. Signs of frozen pipes include frost on the pipe’s surface, no water supply or limited water flow, and strange smells emanating from the faucet or drain. If you suspect your pipes have frozen, it’s imperative to act swiftly to minimize damage. Don’t attempt to thaw the pipes yourself, as this could lead to a burst pipe. Instead, turn off the main water supply and contact a professional plumber immediately. They can assess the situation, safely thaw the pipes, repair any damage, and provide advice to prevent future pipe freezing. Remember, preventing pipes from freezing is much easier and less costly than dealing with the aftermath of a burst pipe.

Sewage Backup

A sewage backup is another serious sign of a plumbing emergency that demands immediate attention. This issue is typically characterized by the unpleasant smell of sewage wafting from drains, toilets, or other plumbing fixtures, or by the appearance of sewage waste in bathtubs, sinks, or showers. The underlying causes for a sewage backup could range from simple clogs to more severe blockages in the main sewer line, or even a full collapse of the sewer line itself. This situation is extremely hazardous as it can lead to substantial property damage and poses severe health risks due to the presence of harmful bacteria and pathogens in sewage waste. If you notice any signs of a sewage backup, immediately halt the use of all water fixtures and appliances, and call a professional plumber. They can perform a thorough inspection, identify the root cause, and execute the necessary repairs to restore the normal functioning of your sewer system. Remember, quick and decisive action can prevent the issue from escalating and safeguard your property and health.

Unusual Noise

Unusual noise coming from your plumbing system is a sign that should not be ignored. These sounds can take various forms – you might hear banging, gurgling, or whistling noises. Banging, also known as ‘water hammer,’ usually occurs when the water flow is suddenly stopped, causing the pipes to shake. Gurgling sounds coming from your drains or toilets could indicate a blocked drain or malfunctioning drain vent. Whistling sounds may be a sign of a faulty valve or pipe obstruction. While these noises can be easily dismissed as harmless, they often indicate underlying issues within your plumbing system that can escalate if they remain unattended. Therefore, if you start hearing unusual sounds from your plumbing, it’s recommended that you seek professional help immediately. A qualified plumber can diagnose the cause and implement the necessary fixes, ensuring your plumbing system functions optimally and preventing potential damage.

Persistent Dripping

Persistent dripping from faucets or showerheads is a common sign of a plumbing issue that many homeowners tend to overlook. While a slow drip might not seem like an immediate emergency, a leaking faucet can waste substantial amounts of water over time, leading to inflated water bills. More crucially, consistent dripping could be indicative of a bigger underlying issue, such as a broken seal, corroded valve seat, or even high water pressure, which can cause damage to your plumbing system if left unchecked. The incessant sound of water dripping can also be quite bothersome, particularly during quieter hours. If you’re unable to rectify the dripping through basic repairs like tightening the faucet or replacing the washer, it’s advisable to call in a professional plumber. They can help identify the root cause of the persistent drip and provide an effective solution, preventing further wastage and potential damage to your plumbing system.

Foul Smells

Foul smells emanating from your plumbing system can be a significant sign of a plumbing emergency. These unpleasant odors, often reminiscent of rotten eggs, typically indicate either a blockage or a problem with your sewer system. A common cause is a dry p-trap, which is designed to keep sewer gases from entering your home. When it dries out, you may notice a rotten egg smell. This can happen if a sink, shower, or toilet hasn’t been used in a while. Blocked pipes can also emit foul odors due to the accumulation of food particles, grease, or other waste items. More seriously, if you notice a sewage smell, it could be due to a breach in the sewer line or a backup in the sewer system, both of which require immediate professional attention. Never ignore persistent foul smells in your home, as they can indicate serious plumbing issues that could lead to health hazards or structural damage if left unresolved. Contact a licensed plumber who can quickly diagnose the source of the odor and rectify the issue.

Rising Water Bills

An unexpected or significant increase in your water bills is a clear indication of a potential plumbing emergency. This could be a result of leaks in the plumbing system that are unnoticeable to the naked eye, running toilets, or dripping faucets. Small leaks can rapidly evolve into major issues if not addressed promptly, leading to extensive water wastage and causing your bills to skyrocket. Furthermore, increased water usage may also be attributed to faulty appliances or changes in water usage habits, but if these factors are ruled out and your water bill remains unusually high, a plumbing issue is often the culprit. When faced with a sudden surge in your water bill, it’s advisable to contact a professional plumber. They can perform a comprehensive inspection of your system, identify any leaks or malfunctions, and undertake the necessary repairs. Remember, early detection of these issues can prevent further escalation, saving you both water and money in the long run.

Mold and Damp Patches

Mold and damp patches on your walls, ceilings, or floors can be indicative of a serious plumbing problem. These signs are often a result of hidden leaks in your plumbing system that maintain a constant source of moisture, providing an ideal environment for mold growth and creating damp patches. This issue is particularly prevalent in damp, dark, and poorly ventilated areas like basements and behind cabinets. Mold can pose significant health risks, including allergies, respiratory issues, and in extreme cases, severe lung infections. The physical damage to your property can also be extensive, affecting the structural integrity of your home and leading to costly repairs. Damp patches might cause discoloration, peeling wallpaper, or warping of walls and flooring. If you observe the presence of mold or damp patches in your home, immediate action is required. A professional plumber can help identify the source of the leak, fix the problem, and prevent the issue from reoccurring. It’s also recommended to get a mold remediation specialist involved to ensure all mold is safely removed and your home returns to a safe living condition.

In summary, the signs of a plumbing emergency can manifest in a variety of ways, ranging from unusual sounds and persistent dripping to foul smells, rising water bills, and even the presence of mold and damp patches. While these symptoms can sometimes be innocuous, they often indicate underlying issues that can rapidly escalate into major problems if not addressed promptly. Thus, it’s crucial to stay vigilant and proactive in monitoring your plumbing system and seeking professional assistance at the first sign of trouble. A qualified plumber can diagnose the issue, implement the necessary repairs, and provide advice on preventing future issues, ensuring your plumbing system functions optimally and maintaining the structural integrity and safety of your home.


Why Your Outdoor AC Unit Isn’t Draining Properly


Air conditioners create condensation. Just like droplets drawn from hot humid air onto the surface of an ice-cold glass, condensation forms from moisture in the air against the ice-cold evaporator coils of your AC unit. The drainage system that allows this moisture to be safely collected rather than causing puddles and water damage is a very important part of your air conditioner. It’s a huge bother when your AC unit’s drainage system isn’t working properly! Let’s get to the bottom of your drainage problem.

How Your Air Conditioner Drains Moisture

Since it’s the evaporator coils, part of the indoor unit, which cause condensation to form, this is where we’ll begin our tour of the drainage system. The water drips from the evaporator coils, landing in the condensate pan below. This pan has a drain that leads to a drainage line, usually made of white PVC or of copper. Some AC units, especially those that have the indoor unit in the basement, have a condensate pump which helps to push the water through that drainage line. Others simply use gravity to allow the water to drain. The end of the drainage line is near the outdoor unit of the air conditioner, and water drips out there. If there simply isn’t a drop of water coming out of it even when your AC unit is running, there’s a problem somewhere in that drainage system.

Causes of Drainage Problems

  • Disconnection: If something has come undone, and your drain line is disconnected from the condensate pan or at any other point, water will stop dripping out the end of the drain line outdoors. This doesn’t mean there’s no water. It means it’s dripping out somewhere else! You need repairs before you end up with water damage.
  • Clogs: The drain in the bottom of the condensate pan, or some other point within the drain line, may have become clogged. This clog could be made of dust and pet hair from inside your home, or it could be that mold or algae have started to grow in all that moisture! You’ll need a professional to clean it out.
  • Corrosion: The weakest point in this system is where the drain line meets the condensate pan. If this connection becomes rusty, leakage can occur at that point. A little new hardware can generally resolve this problem, but you must address it promptly, because a leak—especially of red, rusty water—is no joke.
  • Pump Failure: If your air conditioner does have a condensate pump, and this mechanism fails, it will be unable to push the moisture out the drain line. Again, the water has got to go somewhere, and it could be ending up somewhere that you really don’t want it to be!

Avoiding the Problem in the Future

The best way to reduce the risk of this sort of issue befalling you in the future is to make sure you get annual AC maintenance every year. One of the key tasks the technician will perform is cleaning and inspecting the drainage system. Any problems can be caught early, and mold is much less likely to grow in a freshly-cleaned condensate pan. 

If you have a problem with your AC drainage, or you have any other questions about your outdoor AC unit in Cedar Grove, NJ, don’t hesitate to reach out.

Contact MarGo Plumbing Heating Cooling Inc. today for more information about your air conditioner’s drainage system!

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7 Common HVAC Myths You Should Stop Believing

HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems are essential components of modern homes and buildings. They play a critical role in maintaining a comfortable indoor environment, especially during extreme weather conditions. However, there are several myths about HVAC systems that have been perpetuated over the years, leading to confusion and misinformation. In this blog, we will debunk 7 common HVAC myths that you should stop believing.

1. Myth: Closing vents in unused rooms saves energy

Many people believe that closing vents in unused rooms can save energy and reduce utility bills. However, this is a myth. Closing vents can actually increase energy consumption and put a strain on your HVAC system. When you close vents in a room, the air pressure in the ductwork increases, causing the air to leak out of the ducts. In turn, this can reduce the efficiency of the system. Instead of closing vents, consider installing a zoning system that can direct air to specific rooms.

2. Myth: All air vents are created equal

Many people believe that all air filters are the same and that they do not need to spend more money on high-quality filters. However, this is not true. High-quality air filters can improve indoor air quality and reduce the risk of respiratory problems. Cheaper air filters may not capture all pollutants, leading to poor indoor air quality and health problems. HEPA filters do the best to protect you against common air pollutants. HEPA stands for High Efficiency Particulate Air and is a type of air filter designed to capture and remove small particles from the air, such as dust, pollen, and mold spores, with a high level of efficiency.

3. Myth: You can save energy by turning off your HVAC system when you leave the house

Some homeowners believe that turning off their HVAC system when they leave the house can save energy and reduce utility bills. However, this is not the case. Turning off your HVAC system can cause your home or building to become too hot or too cold, leading to discomfort and wasted energy when the system has to work harder to bring the temperature back to a comfortable level. Instead of turning off your HVAC system, consider installing a programmable thermostat that can adjust the temperature automatically.

4. Myth: Closing doors and windows improves energy efficiency

Some people believe that closing doors and windows can improve energy efficiency and reduce utility bills. However, this is a myth. Closing doors and windows can actually increase energy consumption and strain on your HVAC system. It is important to ensure proper ventilation to maintain good indoor air quality and reduce the risk of respiratory problems.

5. Myth: The bigger the HVAC system, the better

Many homeowners believe that a bigger HVAC system is better because it can cool or heat a room faster. However, this is not true. An oversized HVAC system can be inefficient and wasteful, leading to higher energy bills and shorter lifespan of the system. It is important to choose an HVAC system that is the right size for your home or building to ensure maximum efficiency and comfort.

6. Myth: Annual maintenance isn’t really necessary

Some people believe that HVAC systems do not need annual maintenance because “if it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” However, this is a myth. Annual maintenance is essential to keep your HVAC system running smoothly and efficiently. Regular maintenance can help identify and fix minor issues before they turn into major problems, saving you money on repairs and improving the lifespan of your system.

7. Myth: HVAC systems don’t need to be replaced until they break down

Many homeowners believe that HVAC systems do not need to be replaced until they break down completely. However, this is not true. HVAC systems have a lifespan, and replacing them before they break down can save you money on repairs and energy bills. It is important to replace your HVAC system when it is no longer efficient or cost-effective to repair.

Don’t Fall For These HVAC Myths. Cool Touch Is Here For All Your HVAC Needs In the Phoenix and Prescott Valley Metropolitan Areas

There are several myths about HVAC systems that can lead to confusion and misinformation. By understanding the facts, you can make informed decisions about your HVAC system, save energy, and improve indoor air quality. If you have any questions or concerns about your HVAC system, contact a qualified HVAC professional at Cool Touch for advice. Contact us today by visiting us online here.

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Your Water Heater Maintenance Checklist

water heater maintenance checklist

Your water heater is an essential appliance that often goes unnoticed until a problem arises. To ensure that your water heater operates efficiently, reliably, and safely, regular maintenance is key. In this article, we’ll walk you through a detailed checklist of tasks and tips that will help you extend the lifespan of your water heater, improve its energy efficiency, and minimize the chances of unexpected breakdowns. Read More