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Month: August 2019

Drain Cleaning: Prevention Is Better Than Cure

Drain cleaning. It’s one of those household chores that many of us forget about until a problem emerges. By then,of course,it’s too late to think about what we should have done to keep our drains clear.

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That old cliché tells us that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In the case of drain cleaning,that is largely true. Many clogs are preventable. And the good news is,you can clean your drains without using harsh chemicals.

Green Drain Cleaning

The website care2.com has plenty of green living tips. For drain cleaning,they suggest avoiding commercial cleaners,many of which contain lye or acid. These materials may burn through a clog,but they can also harm human health,the wastewater stream and PVC pipes. For cleaning and unclogging your drain,here are some eco-friendly alternatives,sourced from my own green cleaning practices and care2.com:

o Baking soda – Will we ever stop finding uses for baking soda? As a cleaner it is truly all-purpose. For clogs that have not yet caused water to back up into your sink,care2.com recommends pouring 1 cup of baking soda down your drain,followed by 3 cups of boiling water. You can repeat these steps a few times until the drain is clear.
o Washing Soda – If water is not draining,you can pour 1 cup of washing soda over the drain and let it sit for a while. When the clog loosens,use the baking soda method. A few words of caution: do not use washing soda if you have recently used a commercial acid cleaner – they can react badly. And don’t overuse washing soda if you have PVC pipes – the soda can damage the plastic.
o Baking soda and vinegar – Combine these two in your drain to get a fizzy reaction (a method that is also very entertaining for young children). These two natural cleaners may loosen the clog,but they are also great for regular drain cleaning.
o Enzyme cleaners – These bacteria-based cleaners eat and break down organic matter,which is what your clog is made of. You can use enzyme cleaners monthly to reduce the buildup of drain clogging guck.
o Washing soda for hair clogs – To prevent hair clogs,try to reduce the amount of hair that gets into your drains to start with,using a small screen over your drain. You can also use washing soda monthly to keep hair clogs at bay.

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When The Drain Won’t Clear

If you have a stubborn clog and none of the standard drain cleaning techniques have worked,you may have no choice but to call a plumber. If clogs are a regular occurrence,a plumber may need to inspect your drains to see if there is a bigger problem. If so,they will conduct a thorough examination and suggest the best course of action.

Before you get service,talk to your plumber to ensure they use the latest inspection technologies,which will allow them to find the problem quickly. And ask whether they can help you with any repairs and renovations required to address the overall cause of the clogging problem.

Drain cleaning is something you should not overlook. Practice some preventive maintenance and,in case you can’t resolve the problem yourself,keep the number of a reputable plumber handy.

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Common Tips To Repair Hot Water Heater

Hot water heater repair is important to maintaining the functionality and condition of your heater. While it’s always best to call a professional if you’re truly lost,there are many simple fixes you can perform yourself to save some time and money. Here are some common tips to help you solve some problems that may pop up throughout the years.

Not Enough Heat

A common complain that often goes largely ignored due to fear of hot water heater repair,is water taking too long to heat up or an insufficient amount of water coming out of the faucet. There can be several reasons for this including bad installation,damaged parts,or a tank that is not large enough to accommodate the home’s needs. The first thing you’ll want to check is that the pilot light is on and functioning properly. If it isn’t,you’ll have to relight it and check to see if it solved the problem. Additionally,you should check the dip tube in the cold water pipe to ensure it is not damaged. Old or malfunctioning heating elements should be replaced if found. If none of these procedures repair the hot water heater,you may need to consider upgrading to a tank with a higher capacity.

Strange Noises

Many people first become aware that their hot water heater needs repair when they begin to hear strange sounds. These can range from thumping to high-pitched whistling. Commonly,these are the result of parts of the tank that are rusty or need to be cleaned. If not maintained properly,sediments and dirt can build up on the equipment and not only cause those alarming sounds,but can affect the performance of your heater.

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Leaking

If you discover the tank is leaking,you might need to perform some hot water heater repair. Damage to the tank,usually caused by rust,is the most detrimental. If you notice any holes in the bottom of the tank and can trace the water leak to that point,you’ll likely have to replace the entire heater. However,sometimes the tank might simply be overheating,by reducing the temperature you can stop the leak.

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No Heat

Similar to low hot water supplies,the first thing you’ll want to check if your water heater is only giving out cold is the pilot light. Check the electricity supply as well to ensure everything is running smoothly. If neither of these easy fixes work,a more complicated hot water heater repair,such as replacing the thermostat or a heating element,might be necessary. In this case,it is best to call in a professional to handle the issue.

Whenever performing a hot water heater repair,ensure that you follow all necessary safety steps,as the job can be dangerous. Always shut off the power and water as well as put out the flame to pilot setting before attempting any repair. If you’re uncertain or find serious damage to your water heater,contact a professional.

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