Posts Tagged ‘plumbing tips’

Efficient Toronto Plumbers Are a Must

January 22nd, 2013

When you end up with a problem relating to your plumbing system that requires a drain to be cleaned, potable water to be installed, a sewer be repaired, or installation of a plumbing fixture you need to call a trained professional – a plumber in Toronto. One of the most common tasks that plumbers perform is diagnosis and repairs of plumbing systems. Hiring a plumber should always involve some careful consideration for the contractor you are hiring. It’s important that your plumbing system be maintained properly to prevent costly service calls in the future. Make sure that the plumber you hire is experienced in their area of work; they should understand drain cleaning procedures such as drain snaking, hydro-jetting, and CCTV drain inspection. Any professional, licensed Toronto plumber will be able to provide service for your drain or plumbing needs.

 

An efficient, professional plumber will always take the most appropriate steps to provide an economical, long-lasting solution to your plumbing issues. In areas that provide rebates for plumbing work, your plumber should do their best to provide all the necessary documentation to the municipality so you can claim your rebate. This is particularly the case for instance in the City of Toronto where there is up to $3,200 available for the installation of flood prevention devices such as a sump pump or backwater valve.  With the stormy summer weather these devices can help to save your basement from flooding causing tens of thousands in preventable water damage.

When you encounter problems such as a collapsed sewer, or blocked drain pipe that you just can’t figure out on your own it’s time to call up a professional. A professional, licensed plumber will come out to your property and conduct a full investigation into the problem by way of a camera they insert into the problematic pipe. This camera will relay a high-definition video feed of the interior of your pipes, lit up with multiple LED lights on the end of the cable all of your problems will be revealed. This technique is called CCTV drain inspection and it will help to find problems in your sewer lines, drain lines, and any other pipe that can be easily accessed. This technology saves time in diagnosing the problem as there is no need to excavate and in most cases we can precisely repair the problem area.

Here are a few tips to keep you from calling your local Toronto plumbing contractor:

  • Always use a drain snake to attempt to clean your drain before resorting to chemicals which may cause corrosive damage.
  • Suspect your drain may be clogged? Pour baking soda and vinegar down it; this will help to break up some clogs and is a safe alternative to harsh chemicals.
  • Avoid pouring grease and oil down your drain; it may look like it goes down no problem but these substances build up on the interior of your drain system further down the line and attract other foreign debris.

With a little care you can manage to save a call to your plumber and prolong the life of your plumbing system.

 

Plumbing Tips and Tricks for Homeowners

September 21st, 2012

One aspect of owning a home is to know how the plumbing system works in the house. You need to be able to quickly deal with blockages in drains, waste pipes and air vents. The drainage system in any house is designed to pull waste away from toilets, bathtubs, showers, sinks and other devices that are connected to the water supply, such as washing machines and dishwashers. To keep your home’s plumbing system up-to-date, it’s imperative that you frequently check to see if there are any blockages. You should deal with them in a timely manner.

Preventing Blockages in the First Place

A fundamental rule of home plumbing is that you should avoid putting solid items in the sinks as much as possible. Not all liquids are suitable for sinks as well, especially oil and fat. Many people flush hair after brushing or shaving down the sink, but this can build up very quickly in the piping. When hair builds up, it also bonds with any liquids that do not mix well with water such as oil, fat or body fluids and causes clumps that clog up the pipes. It’s best to throw hair into a garbage can instead of flushing it down the sink.

Likewise, when using a toilet, make sure that you only put toilet paper into it as that is usually the only paper thin enough to go down well. Tissue paper, paper towels, sanitary pads, diapers and contraceptive devices should never be flushed down the toilet. Moreover, if you are flushing old food into the toilet when cleaning pots or pans, make sure that it is free of bones or other large solids that can block up the pipes.

Winter Tips & Tricks for Home Plumbing

Another important aspect of preventing blockages in your plumbing comes into play in parts of the world where the temperature drops below freezing in the winter. Ideally, water should be used regularly (at least several times a day) in winter homes, so that it does not have a chance to freeze up in the pipes. If you are going away from home in the winter, leave a tiny trickle of hot water coming out of the taps so the pipes do not freeze. Ice in pipes can cause serious damage when it expands. This can be very expensive (not to mention that you won’t be able to use your water at all until repaired).

Dealing with Minor Blockages at Home

If you only have a minor blockage in one of your sinks at home, then they are usually easy to deal with using a commercial drain cleaner. Toilets can be unblocked easily with a plunger. Before you try a chemical cleaner on your sinks, it also pays to give it a shot with a plunger first and see if you can get anything blocking the pipes out by force.

If you are having difficulty with unblocking pipes at home, then you might want to call in a professional plumber.

Dos and Don’ts of DIY Drain Cleaning

September 18th, 2012

If you have indoor plumbing as many modern homes do, you will eventually be plagued with stopped-up drains.  In the best of circumstances, it is a minor annoyance; in the worst of circumstances—say, during a family gathering or house party—it can be catastrophic.

However, there is no need to panic.  There are plenty of do-it–yourself remedies you can try before calling a plumber.  But, be aware that the methods and tools needed vary according to which drains are affected.

Using a Plunger to Unclog Drains

It is always better to use environmentally friendly solutions when possible.  One tool no home should be without is a basic plunger.  Used since the late 1800s, a plunger is the first line of defense for any drain blockage.  This simple device is effective on any drain and can often solve the problem in a matter of seconds.

A plunger works by creating suction in the offending drain.  The procedure is the same for any drain in the home.  Make sure there is enough water – in the toilet bowl, sink or tub – to fill the plunger cup.  After ensuring a tight seal, vigorously work the plunger in an up-and-down motion for approximately 15 seconds, releasing it sharply from the drain on the last stroke.

When done properly, you will feel water moving in the drain.  This movement will either push or pull the clog out of the pipe, allowing the water to flow freely through the trap.  Several attempts may be necessary to clear the line.

What if the Drain is Still Clogged?

When dealing with a toilet that will not unclog, it is possible that an object such as a washcloth or a child’s toy may be stuck in the trap.  In this situation, you will need a commode auger to clear the obstruction.  Augers are tools designed to fit into toilet bowls and grasp the object, allowing it to be removed.

For sinks and tubs, a mixture of vinegar and baking soda poured directly into the drain will cause a chemical reaction that should usually clear the pipe.  After letting the mixture work for several minutes, flush the drain with a large container of boiling water.  This will remove hair, soap scum and even grease build-up, which are often the primary causes of sluggish draining.

Can Chemical Drain Cleaners Be Safely Used?

If the eco-friendly measures are unsuccessful, the clog may require a stronger, chemical drain-clearing agent.  At this point, it is worthwhile to call a professional plumber as most commercial products contain lye or hydrochloric acid and can be dangerous.  Using the wrong product—or the wrong amount—can seriously damage your septic system.  Safety should always be priority, and the cost of a new sewer system will greatly outweigh the cost of a plumber.  In this situation, be smart and contact your local plumber for help.