4 Ways To Ensure Your Family Has A Properly Working Plumbing System This Winter

36778918_sThere are many things that homeowners can do during the fall to ensure that they home is ready for the winter weather.

The summer weather presents its own set of wear and tear risks for your home – but, the winter is especially harsh on the various systems used to make your house run.

While your heating system gets used a lot during the winter weather – your plumbing system is the one that is most at-risk from the cold weather.

Your plumbing system is both at-risk for reduced energy-efficiency and for plumbing disasters.

Much of your home’s plumbing system is buried in the ground outside of your home. This exposure to the outside temperatures and elements can make your plumbing system especially vulnerable to reduced energy efficiency.

In fact, if you do a study of your power bills, you will likely find that your plumbing system is the least energy-efficient during the winter months.

Thankfully, there are some things that you can do to ensure that your plumbing system retains as much energy-efficiency as possible:

  • Wrap your water heater with an insulated blanket to buffer against the cold temperatures.
  • Make sure to have your septic or sewer system professional inspected and have any small issues repaired or addressed before they escalate to major problems.
  • Wrap heat tape or pipe sleeves around any exposed plumbing that is installed in an outside facing wall
  • Add hose bib covers on all of the outside hose spigots that are around your home

Use these tips to ensure that your home is protected from the cold temperatures and that the energy efficiency of your plumbing system is intact. Keep an eye on your monthly power and water bills and adjust your efficiency plan as necessary.

Is Your Septic System Ready For The Fall?

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The summer season is a time for family vacations and fun in the sun. However, with August almost over, it is that time of year when most households slow down with the summer activities and switch to school year activities.

 

This is also the time of year when the linens, clothing, and outdoor items for summer are washed, boxed up, and stored away until next year.

 

As you are going through your end of summer activities to get your home ready for fall, don’t forget to be mindful of your plumbing system.

 

While your plumbing system takes a fair amount of use during the summer months – the fall season is when the heavy rains hit and it is important to make sure that all parts of your system are working properly.

 

Like most complex systems – your plumbing pipes, fixtures, and fittings all have to work together to protect your home from flooding during the fall weather.

 

Here are just a few tips for you to follow during these end of summer weeks to keep your plumbing system in top condition:

 

  • Your septic system should be inspected once per year and the tank should be pumped at least once every three years – if not more frequently. During an inspection, your drain field pipes will be checked for tree roots.
  • It’s easy to forget about these areas of your home if you don’t go into them. So, make sure to carve out some time to purposely check the other bathrooms in your home. Guest bathrooms are not a place where you probably visit very often, unless you are preparing to have guests. But, leaks can happen in there the same as the other rooms in your home.  
  • When it is cold outside, having hot water inside is important part of staying healthy and combating the weather. Make sure that your water heater is well-maintained so that you are getting hot water during the cold weather season.

 

Keep your home protected from damage this fall by checking these end of summer plumbing checks off of your list. This is the perfect time to do it while the weather is transitioning from hot to cold.

 

Get Your Plumbing In Top Condition Before Your Summer Guests Arrive!

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The summer season is officially here! School is out for vacation, there are more RVs on the road, and the sun is shining.

 

This is the time of year when most families reserve their time together doing things like taking vacations, road trips to their favorite river or lake spot, and getting together with out-of-town guests.

 

Having a plumbing problem in your home while you are entertaining guests could be very embarrassing. Not to mention putting a big damper on your visit.

 

Thankfully, we have some advice for how to get your plumbing system in top working order before your guests arrive:

 

  • Make sure that your water heater has been serviced recently. It is important to have your water heater professionally checked at least every couple of years. If your water heater is more than eight years old, you should have it inspected every year. Having a water heater stop making hot water or having the tank burst while you have guests would be disastrous.
  • With all of the extra people using the bathroom facilities, you want to make sure that the plumbing system is up to the task. Think about having drain screen installed on all of the sinks, showers, and tubs. This is something that you can do yourself and will only take a minute. The screens can be purchased at your local hardware store and they simply lay over the top of the drains.
  • Grab a flashlight and look under all of your sinks to make sure there aren’t any leaks. The plumbing drains and hoses in the cabinets under your sinks can easily start leaking over time and the leak can get really out of hand if you don’t find it right away.

 

As your friends and family start calling to confirm their visits, make sure to take a few hours before they arrive to ensure that your plumbing system is ready. These visits only happen once a year so it is good to make sure they go off without a hitch!

Is Your Guest Bathroom Ready For Visitors?

18735751_sAre you looking forward to entertaining guests in the coming weeks? The fall is a favorite time of year to have friends and family over for delicious meals. The foods that are associated with fall are some of the best all year.

Baking is a favorite activity in the fall because of all of the specialty apples that are in season. And, casseroles or crockpot soups and stews are made easy and filling with root vegetables, beans, and rich meats.

All of this eating means extra wear and tear on your kitchen plumbing system though. And, if you’re like most people, your kitchen plumbing was mostly ignored over the summer months in favor of spending time outdoors in the warm weather.

But, if you’re going to have guests coming, who are expecting delicious meals and will be spending a couple of nights with you, it is important to get your plumbing system in top working order. Here are some tips:

  • Look in the cabinets under all of the sinks in your home and make sure there isn’t any pooling water. If you store things under the sink in your kitchen, pull everything out so that you can check all of the corners and sides of the cabinet.
  • Not all materials that make up clogs are vulnerable to the chemicals in the cleaning product. Instead, the product sits for a long time in your pipe and eats away at the pipe material, causing a weakening in your plumbing.
  • If you leave a toilet cleaning disc in the tank, the water in the tank will become highly corrosive to the gaskets and cause it to crumble and breakdown. The end result is a toilet that doesn’t function properly. If you have a bathroom in your home that you don’t use very often, leaving a toilet cleaning disc in the tank is especially detrimental as the toilet doesn’t get flushed very often and the water in the tank is constantly bathing the toilet components in chemicals.

To ensure that your guests have a wonderful visit, and you don’t have the unexpected stress and expense of a plumbing failure, make sure to follow these tips for getting your plumbing system in top working order.

4 Maintenance Tips For Your Kitchen Plumbing

39337284_sThe fall season is a favorite time of year for many people. Not only are there some terrific holidays to celebrate this time of year, but the food and seasonal ingredients are warm and comforting.

During the fall season many people move their cooking from outdoors on the grill to indoors in the oven, stove, and crockpot. While this is great for mealtime, it is hard on your kitchen during meal preparation and clean-up.

Here are some ways that you can keep your plumbing system protected from fall season cooking and cleaning:

  • Pour a boiling pot of water down your garbage disposal drain at least one time per week. First, plug the sink with a plug that has a chain on it. Then boil a large pot of water on the stove. Pour the boiling water into the sink, and then pull the drain. The heat and pressure of the water will “wash” the inside of the garbage disposal walls.
  • When you are peeling potatoes and other seasonal ingredients, put a plastic bag on the countertop and peel the foods into it. Then, gather up the side of the plastic bag and throw the peels into the garbage can. This prevents these peels from being put into the garbage disposal, where they will cause problems for the blade and could cause a serious clog.
  • After you have cooked meat, pour the grease, oil, and drippings into an empty tin can. Then, throw the entire can into the garbage can. If you pour the grease into the kitchen drain, it will solidify in the drain when it cools and begin collecting anything that comes down the drain behind it. This will soon lead to a serious clog in your kitchen drain.
  • When you are loading the dishwasher, make sure to thoroughly rinse the dishes and get all of the food particles from them. Putting large amounts of food into the dishwasher can cause the filter to clog, leading to the dishwasher filling with dirty water.

Mealtime during the fall is comforting and warming after a cold day out of your home. But, cleanup and preparation need some thoughtful processes to make sure that your kitchen plumbing is protected. Make sure to follow these tips and keep your kitchen working great!

 

Will You Be Without Hot Water This Fall?

36778918_sYour water heater is an important piece of your plumbing system – especially when the temperature outside starts to get cooler. Now that we are in the fall season, it is reminder that the winter temperatures are not far away, and a winter day without hot water could be very difficult.

While it might seem that your water heater wears down from simple wear and tear, in actuality the cold weather is much more damaging to the system. In fact, when the temperatures begin to drop outside your water heater has to work even harder than any other time of year.

Luckily, there are a couple of things that you can do to protect your water heater from breaking down during the cold weather:

  • Purchase an insulated blanket and wrap it around your water heater. This extra layer of protection helps to keep the heat inside of the tank and the cold outside. When the temperatures drop in the room where your water heater tank is installed, the water inside of the tank is subject to that temperature. This makes the water heater have to work harder to keep the water hot. But, with an insulated blanket, the water is kept hot.
  • Have the pressure valve on your water heater checked. Because the water inside of your water heater tank is hot, it releases steam and creates condensation. This causes pressure to build inside of the tank, and that pressure must be released or the tank will burst. The pressure valve measures the amount of pressure in the tank and releases enough to protect it from damage. Making sure this valve is working properly is very important to the overall safety and integrity of the tank.
  • Have your hot water heater tank inspected by a professional. Before we go into the most difficult season for your hot water heater, have the unit inspected by a professional to make sure that it is working properly and there aren’t any areas that could be hazardous.

Keeping your water heater in top working condition could make the difference between a good winter and a very inconvenient and cold one. The winter temperatures are very damaging to your water heater. Make sure to follow these tips and get your water heater protected.

Plumbing Projects Do’s And Don’ts

34463361_s (1)Safety during home improvement projects is the priority. Whether you are a professional or, a confident homeowner, keeping yourself safe and the project on target are key to a successful outcome.

Your plumbing system is a fragile configuration and must be approached with thoughtfulness and care. This includes having a complete safety protocol that is followed consistently.

Here are some do’s and don’ts for you to add to your list when designing a safety plan for your home plumbing project:

  • If you plumbing projects involves moving or installing plumbing, make sure that you are aware of all plumbing codes and laws. Any kind of addition or construction that you do to your home must pass code and inspection. Knowing what these are is important to ensuring that your plumbing project does not fail an inspection, which could cause you a significant amount of money.
  • Always wear safety gear. Any home improvement project has its own dangers. By not taking these dangers seriously, and protecting yourself, you could be seriously injured. Proper protective equipment includes; safety goggles, gloves, boots, and a mask. This equipment should be worn at all times when working on your plumbing system.
  • Keep your work area clean and tidy. When you are working with your plumbing system, sometimes it is necessary to use power tools. This means creating a situation where electricity and water interact. It is very important in these situations to keep the work area clean and free of any obstructions that could lead to a serious injury.
  • When you are researching your project, make sure to identify the tools you will need for the job and have all of them handy. There are some specialty tools required when working on your plumbing system and they are not ones that people always have in their toolbox. Make sure that you know which tools you will need, and that you are using the tools as they were intended.

Keeping yourself safe during a home improvement project is one of the best ways to keep the project on time and on target. When an unexpected injury occurs, the project could be derailed for quite some time and that might leave you without working plumbing while you are injured.

What does a tankless water heater do?

Benefits of Having a Tankless Water Heater

 

Broomall Tankless Water HeaterTankless water heaters are becoming increasingly common in the American household and are already a staple in many other countries, and it’s not hard to see why. These water heaters warm up water right when you need it. This method allows for many perks.

The most immediate perk is one you get experience every day, a perfectly warm shower. You will never have to worry about the warm water running out on you again. Tankless water heaters use a heat exchanger to instantly provide you with hot water. This eliminates the hassle of juggling shower times to optimize warm showers. Also tankless water heaters will only get as hot as you set it. You don’t have to worry about accidentally hurting yourself with scalding hot water.

Another benefit of having a tankless water heater is that it will save you money. It eliminates the need of a tank of water that has to be constantly heated and constantly wasting energy. Heat will constantly flow out of the traditional water heater which leads to money flowing out of your wallet. A tankless water heater prevents this inefficiency shaving up to 20% of your energy bills. This adds up to hundreds a year. Even better, these units last up to ten years longer than their traditional counterparts saving you even more money in the long run.

Furthermore, a tankless water heater is amazingly convenient. Due to its small size, a system can be installed in almost any place in your house or even outside. It’s small enough to be placed in a cabinet on a wall or hidden neatly in a closet. Installation outside is simple and all that is required is an anti-freeze kit. Also most units are conveniently remote controlled so you can comfortably adjust the setting from afar. This also ends any worries of having a cracked tank flooding your house.

Are you looking to install a new tankless water heater in your Broomall home?  Call John McCuen Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning at (610) 325-9395 and get started today!

How can I make sure I’m hiring the right plumber?

Questions You Should Ask A Plumber Before Hiring One

 

Broomall PlumberWhen the need for a Broomall plumber arises, few stop to think about the quality and reputation of the plumber they are calling. For most, it is whoever answers the phone and can get there the quickest. That is why it is important to have a plumber of choice that a family knows they can depend on. By doing a bit of research before a plumbing situation occurs, it is easy to find a plumber that not only can do the job well, but has a great reputation. All too often people get ahold of plumber that doesn’t do the best work or overcharges. Here are some tips and things to ask your next plumber before you hire them.

How Long Have You Been In Business? While this may seem like a traditional question, the length of time that a business has been in place is important. It speaks volumes about their service, reputation and prices. A company that services the community with fair pricing and great service work, will be around for a long time. Not all new companies are bad, everyone has to start somewhere. However, stick with someone who has history.

Are Your Plumbers All Certified or Properly Trained? There are many people who can work on plumbing, and some well. However, belonging to a plumbers and pipe fitters union or having some other sort of certification is important. This means these technicians are well trained and can service most plumbing issues. Ask what certifications they require for their employees. In an emergency, you want a technician who knows what they are doing.

How Much Do You Charge Per Hour? Most plumbers charge an hourly rate. If called in after hours, the rate usually goes up significantly. Find out the rates up front.

What Is The Turn Around Time? During a plumbing crisis, you want a company who responds quickly. When you have water gushing through your home, a couple hour wait may be too long. Some companies offer 30 minute guarantees or so. Find out their response time.

What Kind of Equipment Do You Use? Technology is constantly changing, and the plumbing field is no different. Find out what kind of apparatuses they use. Things like the camera that can go into drain lines, can save you a ton of money in diagnosing and fixing the problem. These plumbers don’t have to guess, they can zero in on the exact problem.

Are you looking for a home plumber in Broomall or surrounding area? Call John McCuen Plumbing Heating Air Conditioning Inc. at (610) 325-9395 and get started today!