plumbing blogs for champion

water leak plumberIt is one of the worst nightmares of any homeowner. You wake up in the morning or come home from a relaxing vacation to discover that your pipes have burst. A burst pipe is a serious matter, and what you do next could make a big difference in the amount of damage you ultimately suffer.

As with any household emergency, the faster you react the better off you will be. If the pipe just burst, you may be able to prevent flooding and the resulting water damage. Turn off the main water supply as soon as you discover the burst pipe, and do not turn the water back on until you are sure the problem has been rectified.

You will next need to drain the system of water to avoid flooding from the burst pipe. Turn the cold water taps on the whole way on every sink in your home to drain the accumulated water. Flush the toilets several times to remove that water from the system.

After the water has been drained from the system, the next step is to turn off your heating system and electronics. Once that has been done you should go around and collect any standing water that has already accumulated. Water damage can become severe very fast, so the faster you clean it up the better.

Once the accumulated water has been collected and discarded, it is time to locate and repair the leak. If you are confident in your ability to detect the leak and fix it properly, you can do the work yourself. If not, it is best to call in a professional plumber.

Plumbers have many years of experience in finding and repairing leaks, and they may be able to detect leaks you would have missed or even find potential problems. If your pipes have sprung one leak, there could be additional weak spots you are not aware of. Having the entire system checked by a professional is a good preventative measure, even if you are certain you can fix the original leak on your own.

Only turn the water back on after you are sure the leak has been addressed and there is no additional damage to the plumbing system. Having a pipe burst can be a disconcerting and frightening experience, but the sooner you deal with the better. If you act promptly, you can avoid long term water damage and the destruction of the contents inside your home.

———————

======================================

water shut off valveWhen a plumbing emergency happens, do you know how to shut off the water to your home? Waiting until an emergency arises is not a good time to determine the location of your water shut-off valve.

Regardless of the individual catastrophe which sends water shooting across the room, through the walls, and into the lower level ceilings, the ability to stop the water in your house is an imperative safeguard against the amplification of certain problems. While this knowledge will not prevent pipes from bursting or drains from clogging, it will allow you to best control the situation should it occur.

The average homeowner files an insurance claim every nine years, making it less of a question of whether you will someday need to know how to shut off the water in your home, and more of a matter of how soon it will happen to you.

What is a water shut-off valve?

The water shut-off valve is typically placed close to the point of entrance of water into your house, apartment, or office building. It s purpose is to cease the flow of water. There are line shut-off valves located throughout your home: washing machine, sinks, external faucets, dishwashers, and toilets. These valves stop individual lines of water when maintenance is required. Your main shut-off controls the flow of all water into your home or office.

Why the knowledge of your shut-off valve location is important

Every second counts once a pipe bursts. The typical house can experience an average of 16 gallons of flood water flowing each minute, so you have little time to spare. Cascading water moves quickly and can damage even that which is out of sight, including floor joists and foundations. Although stopping the water will not reverse what damage has already been done, the ability to stop the situation from escalating can save you thousands of dollars and weeks of additional repairs.

Spread the word

Once you find your water shut-off valve, let everyone in the house know where it is, and show them how to operate it. If your shut-off valve is in an unusual area, do not stop with those who reside with you; share this location with house guests, baby sitters, and anyone that may be watching your home while you are away. Explain the dangers involved with flood waters and develop a plan that begins with stopping the water.

After you have shut off your water valve, now you can start salvaging affected possessions, cleaning up what you can, and contacting a plumber or water damage professional, and documenting as much as you can for insurance purposes.

————-

================

water-heater-tipsIf you are looking to upgrade your hot water heater, you have lots of options. Today’s models include high-efficiency styles such as those run by solar energy or a hybrid heat pump. Standard gas and electric water heaters are sold by numerous manufacturers, giving you a wide variety of choices. You can even get one fueled by liquid propane. Finding the right type and size of water heater is important not only for your budget but also for the level of comfort you experience when using your hot water.

Deciding Which Tank Size to Purchase

The standard water heater is available in different sizes, ranging from 10 to 20-gallon capacities. The size that you should install depends on two factors – the size of your family and the amount of space you have available for the heater. Larger families might prefer to purchase a larger tank size to accommodate a higher demand for hot water, while smaller families can probably get by using the 10-gallon size.

Things to Consider When Purchasing Storage Tank Water Heaters

One of the most popular styles of water heaters, the storage tank, is designed to deliver hot water on demand. While its storage capacity is the first feature that you will consider, it is important to find out what the recovery rate for it is. The recovery rate refers to the number of gallons of water that the tank can heat in a single hour. If you intend to use a lot of hot water, then you need a tank offering a high recovery rate.

If energy costs are a consideration, which they typically are for most families, choosing a water heater that offers high efficiency and lower than average heating costs over the course of a year is your best option. You can find all of this information out by looking at the EnergyGuide label attached to the model that you are looking to buy.

If you are purchasing a secondary storage tank, a smaller size might be sufficient for your needs. For example, if you want a source of hot water for exterior buildings, such as garages and workshops, a utility water heater ranging in size from 2.5 to 10 gallons should be more than sufficient.

Maintenance Tips for Your Water Heater

Whether you have an electric or a gas water heater, performing an annual maintenance checkup on it can extend its lifespan considerably. Typically, a conventional water heater is designed to last as long as ten years. However, you do need to maintain your water heater properly in order for it to last that long. If you prefer not to do the work yourself, you can call a San Antonio plumber to arrange for an annual checkup.

Basically, you want to give the tank a mini-flush. To do so, you should start by turning down the temperature setting so that it at least 115 degrees but less than 120 degrees.

Next, you should check the T & P valve (temperature and pressure) to ensure that it is working properly. Lift the lever part of the way, release the lever, and watch to see if it snaps back in place quickly. As it does so, you should hear water going into the drain tube. If you don’t hear his gurgling noise, your T & P valve needs to be replaced.

Finally, you are going to remove the sediment buildup from the bottom of the tank to help improve the efficiency of your water heater. Place a bucket beneath the valve that allows you to drain some of the water from the tank. Open the valve and allow a few gallons of water to flow into the bucket. Close the valve and empty the bucket.

————-
Tips on Choosing the Best Water Heater

water-heater-tipsIf you are looking to upgrade your hot water heater, you have lots of options. Today’s models include high-efficiency styles such as those run by solar energy or a hybrid heat pump. Standard gas and electric water heaters are sold by numerous manufacturers, giving you a wide variety of choices. You can even get one fueled by liquid propane. Finding the right type and size of water heater is important not only for your budget but also for the level of comfort you experience when using your hot water.

Deciding Which Tank Size to Purchase

The standard water heater is available in different sizes, ranging from 10 to 20-gallon capacities. The size that you should install depends on two factors – the size of your family and the amount of space you have available for the heater. Larger families might prefer to purchase a larger tank size to accommodate a higher demand for hot water, while smaller families can probably get by using the 10-gallon size.

Things to Consider When Purchasing Storage Tank Water Heaters

One of the most popular styles of water heaters, the storage tank, is designed to deliver hot water on demand. While its storage capacity is the first feature that you will consider, it is important to find out what the recovery rate for it is. The recovery rate refers to the number of gallons of water that the tank can heat in a single hour. If you intend to use a lot of hot water, then you need a tank offering a high recovery rate.

If energy costs are a consideration, which they typically are for most families, choosing a water heater that offers high efficiency and lower than average heating costs over the course of a year is your best option. You can find all of this information out by looking at the EnergyGuide label attached to the model that you are looking to buy.

If you are purchasing a secondary storage tank, a smaller size might be sufficient for your needs. For example, if you want a source of hot water for exterior buildings, such as garages and workshops, a utility water heater ranging in size from 2.5 to 10 gallons should be more than sufficient.

Maintenance Tips for Your Water Heater

Whether you have an electric or a gas water heater, performing an annual maintenance checkup on it can extend its lifespan considerably. Typically, a conventional water heater is designed to last as long as ten years. However, you do need to maintain your water heater properly in order for it to last that long. If you prefer not to do the work yourself, you can call a San Antonio plumber to arrange for an annual checkup.

Basically, you want to give the tank a mini-flush. To do so, you should start by turning down the temperature setting so that it at least 115 degrees but less than 120 degrees.

Next, you should check the T & P valve (temperature and pressure) to ensure that it is working properly. Lift the lever part of the way, release the lever, and watch to see if it snaps back in place quickly. As it does so, you should hear water going into the drain tube. If you don’t hear his gurgling noise, your T & P valve needs to be replaced.

Finally, you are going to remove the sediment buildup from the bottom of the tank to help improve the efficiency of your water heater. Place a bucket beneath the valve that allows you to drain some of the water from the tank. Open the valve and allow a few gallons of water to flow into the bucket. Close the valve and empty the bucket.
=========================

professional-plumberIt’s always a good idea to select your plumber before you actually need one, so that you can make an informed decision about your choice. Otherwise, you might find yourself choosing a plumber in a rush, which often doesn’t lead to quality repairs and affordable prices. Don’t wait until your toilet is clogged or your pipes are leaking. Instead, use these tips to assist you in figuring out which professional is the right person for your plumbing needs before anything happens.

Get a Recommendation

The first place to start your search is to ask family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers who they use for their plumbing maintenance, repairs, and upgrades. You might discover that several people recommend the same plumber or plumbing company, giving you a good option.

Ask a Professional

If you have an established relationship with a building or contracting company, you should call and ask for the contact information for the plumber used by them. If you purchased your home recently, you can contact your real estate agent and ask for a recommendation.

Request the License Number

In order to determine whether or not the plumber has the proper credentials and training, ask for the individual’s license number. If he cannot provide one, it’s best to continue your task of choosing a plumber by looking for a professional who does have a license. In the event that you need to file a claim with your insurer, you will be required to provide the plumber’s license. Choosing a plumber with a license gives you a convenient way to locate him if you need to request additional service based upon the terms of the warranty.

Ask if the Plumber/Plumbing Company Is Insured

Typically, licensed plumbers are insured. You should verify that the plumber does have insurance, just in case you need to put in a claim.

Ask About Service Warranties

If the plumber provides a customer-service guarantee, it’s a clear sign that he does quality work. If he doesn’t offer a service warranty, then it’s more than likely he won’t return to remedy a problem that he created. A plumber who is confidant in his own skills is going to provide a guarantee for his services, giving you an excellent reason to consider him for the task of keeping your plumbing in good condition.

Consider Pricing

As with many service industries, you’ll discover a wide variety in pricing. Some plumbers charge a flat fee that includes everything from parts to labor, while others charge an hourly rate or service-call fee on top of the cost of materials and parts. While it is normal for some jobs to require an open-ended quote due to the unknowns existing with the job, this shouldn’t be the case for each type of plumbing repair. If you want to find a plumber with affordable prices, you need to ask a lot of questions, including whether or not there are any additional fees.

Choosing an Established Plumber

Due to the intricate nature of plumbing, finding an experienced professional who has been in the trade for a number of years gives you access to skilled work. Look for a plumber who operates out of a business office rather than out of his home. You don’t want someone who simply does plumbing as a side business, but rather, you should look for a professional who is committed to providing quality plumbing service.

———-
Choosing a Plumber Who Is Qualified for the Job

It’s always a good idea to select your plumber before you actually need one, so that you can make an informed decision about your choice. Otherwise, you might find yourself choosing a plumber in a rush, which often doesn’t lead to quality repairs and affordable prices. Don’t wait until your toilet is clogged or your pipes are leaking. Instead, use these tips to assist you in figuring out which professional is the right person for your plumbing needs before anything happens.

Get a Recommendation

The first place to start your search is to ask family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers who they use for their plumbing maintenance, repairs, and upgrades. You might discover that several people recommend the same plumber or plumbing company, giving you a good option.

Ask a Professional

If you have an established relationship with a building or contracting company, you should call and ask for the contact information for the plumber used by them. If you purchased your home recently, you can contact your real estate agent and ask for a recommendation.

Request the License Number

In order to determine whether or not the plumber has the proper credentials and training, ask for the individual’s license number. If he cannot provide one, it’s best to continue your task of choosing a plumber by looking for a professional who does have a license. In the event that you need to file a claim with your insurer, you will be required to provide the plumber’s license. Choosing a plumber with a license gives you a convenient way to locate him if you need to request additional service based upon the terms of the warranty.

Ask if the Plumber/Plumbing Company Is Insured

Typically, licensed plumbers are insured. You should verify that the plumber does have insurance, just in case you need to put in a claim.

Ask About Service Warranties

If the plumber provides a customer-service guarantee, it’s a clear sign that he does quality work. If he doesn’t offer a service warranty, then it’s more than likely he won’t return to remedy a problem that he created. A plumber who is confidant in his own skills is going to provide a guarantee for his services, giving you an excellent reason to consider him for the task of keeping your plumbing in good condition.

Consider Pricing

As with many service industries, you’ll discover a wide variety in pricing. Some plumbers charge a flat fee that includes everything from parts to labor, while others charge an hourly rate or service-call fee on top of the cost of materials and parts. While it is normal for some jobs to require an open-ended quote due to the unknowns existing with the job, this shouldn’t be the case for each type of plumbing repair. If you want to find a plumber with affordable prices, you need to ask a lot of questions, including whether or not there are any additional fees.

Choosing an Established Plumber

Due to the intricate nature of plumbing, finding an experienced professional who has been in the trade for a number of years gives you access to skilled work. Look for a plumber who operates out of a business office rather than out of his home. You don’t want someone who simply does plumbing as a side business, but rather, you should look for a professional who is committed to providing quality plumbing service.

=========================================

Water Filtration SystemWhether or not you install a water filtration system in your home depends upon the existing quality of your drinking water. While public water is treated to remove most impurities, it is still possible for contaminants to find their way into the water. Typically, the condition of your water lines influences the quality of your drinking water. Over time, impurities and contaminants can find their way into your water, lowering its quality and influencing its taste and smell.

Drinking purified water is the best option for anyone. Its lack of impurities makes this type of water safer and healthier to drink. However, if your water isn’t purified, you might be placing yourself and your family at risk of becoming exposed to harmful pollutants that might make you ill.

Whether or not you draw your water from a private or public source, you might benefit from having a water filtration system installed. Two of the most commonly installed filtration systems include the fiber filtration system and the carbon filtration system.

What Is a Fiber Filtration System?

If your water contains particles, such as minerals or sediment, installing a fiber filtration system is probably your best option. This type of filtration system is designed with spun cellulose or rayon, which is used to trap the bits of sediment contained in your water. The fibers are tightly wrapped into a cylinder-like shape so that the particles are trapped and removed from the water.

Fiber filters are sold in different styles. The primary difference between them is the type of filter that is attached to the device. Each filter features a woven mesh with openings. The tighter that the weave on the mesh is, the smaller the size of the particles can be. When a looser weave is involved, the only particles that can be trapped are those of a larger size. If you need help choosing the correct type of fiber filtration device for your needs, an experienced plumber can assist you with your decision.

What Is a Carbon Filtration System?

One of the best options you have when your water has a foul odor or taste to it is to look into a carbon filtration system. The foulness could be due to the presence of organic compounds that have dissolved into your water supply. If this is the case, a carbon filtration device can be used to remove the organic material.

This type of filtration system is designed to remove most of the organic impurities from the water using a unique carbon filter. Your water is channeled through the filtration device, where the impurities are captured, removing them from the water.

Several types of carbon filters are available, but each one requires replacement eventually. How quickly you need to replace your carbon filter depends on how much water you use on a daily basis as well as on the amount of organic material that is present in your water supply.

A licensed plumber can assist you in selecting your carbon filtration system, using the information that you provide about your water supply and usage. Your options include granular, powder-in-pad, and powder-in-block versions.

————

Should You Install a Water Filtration System?

Water Filtration SystemWhether or not you install a water filtration system in your home depends upon the existing quality of your drinking water. While public water is treated to remove most impurities, it is still possible for contaminants to find their way into the water. Typically, the condition of your water lines influences the quality of your drinking water. Over time, impurities and contaminants can find their way into your water, lowering its quality and influencing its taste and smell.

Drinking purified water is the best option for anyone. Its lack of impurities makes this type of water safer and healthier to drink. However, if your water isn’t purified, you might be placing yourself and your family at risk of becoming exposed to harmful pollutants that might make you ill.

Whether or not you draw your water from a private or public source, you might benefit from having a water filtration system installed. Two of the most commonly installed filtration systems include the fiber filtration system and the carbon filtration system.

What Is a Fiber Filtration System?

If your water contains particles, such as minerals or sediment, installing a fiber filtration system is probably your best option. This type of filtration system is designed with spun cellulose or rayon, which is used to trap the bits of sediment contained in your water. The fibers are tightly wrapped into a cylinder-like shape so that the particles are trapped and removed from the water.

Fiber filters are sold in different styles. The primary difference between them is the type of filter that is attached to the device. Each filter features a woven mesh with openings. The tighter that the weave on the mesh is, the smaller the size of the particles can be. When a looser weave is involved, the only particles that can be trapped are those of a larger size. If you need help choosing the correct type of fiber filtration device for your needs, an experienced plumber can assist you with your decision.

What Is a Carbon Filtration System?

One of the best options you have when your water has a foul odor or taste to it is to look into a carbon filtration system. The foulness could be due to the presence of organic compounds that have dissolved into your water supply. If this is the case, a carbon filtration device can be used to remove the organic material.

This type of filtration system is designed to remove most of the organic impurities from the water using a unique carbon filter. Your water is channeled through the filtration device, where the impurities are captured, removing them from the water.

Several types of carbon filters are available, but each one requires replacement eventually. How quickly you need to replace your carbon filter depends on how much water you use on a daily basis as well as on the amount of organic material that is present in your water supply.

A licensed plumber can assist you in selecting your carbon filtration system, using the information that you provide about your water supply and usage. Your options include granular, powder-in-pad, and powder-in-block versions.

=========================

clogged-drainOne of the most common plumbing problems experienced by homeowners is the clogged drain. Whether it occurs in the kitchen sink or in one of your bathroom fixtures, this type of problem can disrupt your life in a major way until you get it fixed. If the kitchen or bathroom sink doesn’t drain, then you can’t continue using it as you normally would.

In some cases, a clog leads to slow drainage of the water, while in other instances, the clog prevents the water from draining at all. With either problem, the need to have the clog removed is an immediate one. Not only do clogged drains lead to the accumulation of standing water, but they can also create unpleasant odors.

While the obvious choice is to call in a qualified plumber to unclog the drain, most people prefer to attempt it on their own, at least initially. Here is a look at some of the strategies that you can use to clear your drain on your own before calling in the services of a trained and skillful plumber.

Hot Water Flushes Break Up Sticky Residue

If the clog recently appeared, it is possible that you might be able to flush it through simply by running the hot-water tap for several minutes. This strategy works best when the clog is due to a buildup of soap or grease.

Plunging the Drain Creates a Vacuum That Sucks the Clog Out

The idea behind the use of a plunger is to force water to push the clog clear of the drain and through the pipes. In order for this strategy to work, you need to have a secure grip on the plunger as you pump it up and down on top of the drain. You should be able to feel the plunger creating a vacuum-like pressure. If all goes well, the clog will break loose completely.

Natural Drain Cleaners Work to Loosen Hardened Debris

In some cases, a clogged drain can be cleared with a natural solution that involves the use of baking soda and white vinegar. Measure approximately one cup of baking soda and pour it into the drain. Follow that up with a single cup of white vinegar. You’ll need to let this sit for an hour or so to allow this mix to work on the clog. When you are ready, flush the drain with lots of hot water. If you have metal pipes, you can use boiling water from a tea kettle. Otherwise, run the tap for the hot water.

A Plumber’s Snake Uncorks the Clog

Although this tool is called a plumber’s snake, anyone can purchase one to use in clearing a clogged drain. You’ll find one at a hardware or home-improvement store. You run the snake through the drain and pipe in an attempt to dislodge the clog. You should exercise caution though so as not to damage pipe. If you hear the scraping sound of metal on metal, you might want to use a different strategy to clear the clog.

Chemical Cleaners

If you are going to use a chemical cleaner in an attempt to clear a clogged drain, you’ll need to protect your eyes and skin. The harshness of the chemicals can irritate your eyes and/or skin if they splash you. Always follow the directions on the cleaner and make sure that the product you select is safe for the type of pipes that you have.

Periodic Cleanings

If your drains clog regularly, you might want to incorporate monthly (or weekly) cleanings to assist you in keeping your drains flowing freely. You can probably use the natural-cleaning strategy to handle this task successfully.

Call in a Professional Plumber

If none of the above solutions works for your situation, your best bet is to call in a professional plumber who has the experience to do the job quickly and efficiently. While he might use some of the same strategies that are listed here, he has the knowledge needed to unclog a drain without damaging your plumbing system.

—————-

What Can You Do to Fix a Clogged Drain in Your Bathtub, Shower, Utility Tub, or Sink?

clogged-drainOne of the most common plumbing problems experienced by homeowners is the clogged drain. Whether it occurs in the kitchen sink or in one of your bathroom fixtures, this type of problem can disrupt your life in a major way until you get it fixed. If the kitchen or bathroom sink doesn’t drain, then you can’t continue using it as you normally would.

In some cases, a clog leads to slow drainage of the water, while in other instances, the clog prevents the water from draining at all. With either problem, the need to have the clog removed is an immediate one. Not only do clogged drains lead to the accumulation of standing water, but they can also create unpleasant odors.

While the obvious choice is to call in a qualified plumber to unclog the drain, most people prefer to attempt it on their own, at least initially. Here is a look at some of the strategies that you can use to clear your drain on your own before calling in the services of a trained and skillful plumber.

Hot Water Flushes Break Up Sticky Residue

If the clog recently appeared, it is possible that you might be able to flush it through simply by running the hot-water tap for several minutes. This strategy works best when the clog is due to a buildup of soap or grease.

Plunging the Drain Creates a Vacuum That Sucks the Clog Out

The idea behind the use of a plunger is to force water to push the clog clear of the drain and through the pipes. In order for this strategy to work, you need to have a secure grip on the plunger as you pump it up and down on top of the drain. You should be able to feel the plunger creating a vacuum-like pressure. If all goes well, the clog will break loose completely.

Natural Drain Cleaners Work to Loosen Hardened Debris

In some cases, a clogged drain can be cleared with a natural solution that involves the use of baking soda and white vinegar. Measure approximately one cup of baking soda and pour it into the drain. Follow that up with a single cup of white vinegar. You’ll need to let this sit for an hour or so to allow this mix to work on the clog. When you are ready, flush the drain with lots of hot water. If you have metal pipes, you can use boiling water from a tea kettle. Otherwise, run the tap for the hot water.

A Plumber’s Snake Uncorks the Clog

Although this tool is called a plumber’s snake, anyone can purchase one to use in clearing a clogged drain. You’ll find one at a hardware or home-improvement store. You run the snake through the drain and pipe in an attempt to dislodge the clog. You should exercise caution though so as not to damage pipe. If you hear the scraping sound of metal on metal, you might want to use a different strategy to clear the clog.

Chemical Cleaners

If you are going to use a chemical cleaner in an attempt to clear a clogged drain, you’ll need to protect your eyes and skin. The harshness of the chemicals can irritate your eyes and/or skin if they splash you. Always follow the directions on the cleaner and make sure that the product you select is safe for the type of pipes that you have.

Periodic Cleanings

If your drains clog regularly, you might want to incorporate monthly (or weekly) cleanings to assist you in keeping your drains flowing freely. You can probably use the natural-cleaning strategy to handle this task successfully.

Call in a Professional Plumber

If none of the above solutions works for your situation, your best bet is to call in a professional plumber who has the experience to do the job quickly and efficiently. While he might use some of the same strategies that are listed here, he has the knowledge needed to unclog a drain without damaging your plumbing system.

============================

Should You Choose a Traditional Storage Tank or a Tankless Hot Water Heater?

tankless-water-heaterIf your hot water heater is on the fritz, you have more options today than ever before when selecting your next model. Advancements in technology have produced energy-efficient models and a variety of sizes, making your selection as easy as possible. Here is a look at the advantages and disadvantages of owning a traditional storage style and a tankless option.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Installing a Traditional Storage Tank?

The traditional style of hot water heater features a large tank that can hold up to 100 gallons of water, depending on the size that you purchase. In order to install this style, your home needs to have sufficient space for its placement. Therefore, if you have a small home, you might not be able to purchase a larger capacity, reducing your access to hot water on demand. As a result, you might need to wait an hour or more to obtain hot water once the tank has been drained completely through use. If you have a large family, this can lead to squabbles as the individuals at the end of the shower line discover that there’s no more hot water to use.

With a storage tank, hot water is accessible within minutes of turning on a faucet or appliance. Typically, it takes longer to access hot water when your water lines are not insulated. However, the amount of time that most people have to wait to obtain hot water with a traditional storage tank is usually less than 30 seconds.

This style of hot water heater is available in several sizes, enabling consumers to choose the model that is suitable for their hot-water demands. It is possible to purchase a small tank that is less than 20 gallons as well as larger tanks up to 70 or more gallons. Popularly purchased sizes include both 40 and 50 gallon tanks, which are ideal choices for families. If your current water heater isn’t providing a sufficient supply of hot water, you should select a larger size when you decide to replace it.

Consumers can purchase a gas, oil, or electric version, giving them the flexibility to select a model that matches their available power supply. A licensed plumber has the skills to install each type.

Traditional styles of hot water tanks are generally less expensive than tankless versions, providing affordable options for individuals with tight budgets. They are also easy to vent and install, saving the consumer even more money.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Installing a Tankless Hot Water Heater?

Designed to heat water on demand rather than continuously, a tankless hot water heater offers financial savings that result from lower utility bills. Tankless models deliver a high level of energy efficiency, reducing the amount of power that is wasted on a daily basis. Once you turn on the hot-water tap, you receive heated water immediately, eliminating the one-to-two minute wait that often occurs with a storage-tank system. As you can see, tankless models also cut back on the amount of water that is wasted each day.

Tankless versions take up less space than the traditional storage tank, so this type of heater is the ideal choice for smaller homes. It offers a streamlined appearance while providing the same high quality of heated water that you would get with a bulkier storage tank.

Also known as the “demand water heater,” this style provides enough hot water for everyone to take a shower, wash the dishes, or do the laundry without running out of hot water. There’s no need to worry about being last in line to take a shower anymore, because you will always have a sufficient supply of heated water to use.

This style is available in electric and gas models, offering customers the flexibility they need to match up a hot water tank with their home’s existing utility setup. You simply choose the model that fits your home’s gas or electric energy source.

Homeowners can also choose tankless heaters offering different heating capacities. Even though you never run out of hot water, it is possible to experience a decrease in the temperature of the water if you are running several appliances (washing machine and dishwasher) along with the shower or bathtub. When you select a tankless model with a higher capacity rating, this risk is minimized.

Since tankless versions take up so little space, you always have the option to install two of them if your hot water demands are high. For example, you can install one unit that is setup to deliver hot water to your showers, tubs, and sinks and a second unit that is installed to provide heated water to the dishwasher and washing machine.

Tankless models are electronically controlled, so they are easy to use. Once your plumber sets up your heater, you can sit back and enjoy using it.

Should You Install a Traditional Storage Tank or a Tankless Hot Water Heater?

Unless you have professional training in plumbing services, you should hire a licensed plumber to install your hot water heater for you to ensure that the job is done properly. After all, you can expect your heater to last for several years as long as it is installed correctly.
================================

=======================================

Never Ignore a Slow Leak

water-leakLeaky faucets are one of the most common plumbing problems homeowners must fix. Champion Plumbing puts leaky faucet repairs in the category of home maintenance because they are generally easy fixes and cost-efficient as well. Plumbing repairs are highly recommended to protect homes from structural damage. Water from leaky faucets can cause enormous damage and, depending on its mineral content, will discolor sinks, tubs, showers, and more.

Is a Professional Necessary?

Small leaks can easily be fixed by the homeowner. However, homeowners experiencing larger leaks or who are unfamiliar with fixing faucets should contact a plumber right away. In case of large leaks, or water leakage in a wall, the main waterline to the house may need to be shut off until the problem is remedied.

Moisture Buildup

Uncontrolled moisture in the home can be hazardous. A continuous source of water can lead to water accumulation on or inside a wall or under flooring, which can result in severe damage and a buildup of fungus or toxic mold too dangerous to inhale. We highly recommends calling a plumber immediately if any signs of water damage or leakage are spotted. These signs may include water spots on ceilings, in walls, and leaking from light fixtures. A continuous musty odor may also mean a hidden plumbing leak.

Energy Bills

We know a small leak often leads to a larger leak. If ignored, a constant drip may grow into a stream of water. The slow, yet constant use of water means a higher water bill, because it can add up to gallons of water each day. Depending on the speed and consistency of a leaky faucet, homeowners may pay an additional $20 or more than necessary each year in their water bills.

Water Damage

A slow leak can damage and discolor sinks, tubs, and other areas designed to collect it. Specifically, the chemicals and minerals in the water can lead to brown or green discoloration. In some cases, the water may ruin the sink basin and cause it to deteriorate. Not all leaks come from the faucet, either. San Antonio Plumber recommends checking other places, too, such as the faucet base or pipe joints.
========================================

rusted-plumbing
When It’s Time For New Plumbing

rusted-plumbingWhether you live in an old one or a new home, keeping up with plumbing is critical. People with older homes often consider the benefits of upgrading plumbing systems, but there are times when newer homes need a plumbing remake too. While all homeowners want their systems to last, building materials have varying life spans – there always comes a time when updating and replacing plumbing pipes is inevitable.

We encourage homeowners to know their pipes. The type of plumbing material used in a house will determine its life expectancy. For new homebuyers, an inspector’s report should list the type of material used. For established homeowners who have been in their home for a while and may no longer have access to an inspection report, a professional plumber can offer insight regarding the type and condition of the pipes in the home.

The length of time the pipes last may vary. Some pipes may last longer than a century, but hard water may cause them to fail sooner. The best advice for homeowners is to have pipes maintained to maximize their lifespan. It is often in the best interest of the homeowner to have a professional plumber inspect the house’s plumbing if it is older than 50 years.

So what are some popular materials, and how long do they last? In the home, supply pipes are usually made of:

Brass – Life span typically lasts anywhere from 80 to 100 years.
Copper – Life span between 70 to 80 years.
Galvanized steel – Life span between 80 to 100 years.
Our plumbers have plenty of experience with locating warning signs of possible pipe failure. Signs that it is time to replace plumbing due to age and corrosion include:

Discolored tubing
Stains
Flaking
Dimpling
Even without signs of corrosion or pipe failure, there are certain plumbing materials that should immediately be replaced no matter the situation. Any home with lead or polybutylene pipes should have the plumbing replaced immediately. Lead pipes are a health hazard, and polybutylene pipes break easily.

=============================
Water Main Inspection

water-main-repairThe importance of a water main inspection is often overlooked, and San Antonio plumbers are well aware of the costly consequences this negligence may have on a home. It is important to have a water main inspection to identify the current condition of a water main. This is because breakage of a water main could lead to significant flooding as well as cross-contamination of a safe water source. The fragile ecosystem in which we live is also at risk when a water main fails. Additionally, by knowing the state of a water main, costly and complex water main replacements can be avoided.

Problems Found in Water Mains

A dangerous, yet thankfully rare, problem found in water mains is lead contamination of drinking water. This is normally found in older houses which still utilize the water main installed when the home was constructed, and prior to the knowledge that lead is detrimental to health. If lead is found in the tap water or inside the water main itself, it is imperative to find alternative drinking water while the water main is replaced.

One of the most common water main problems is that of leaks within the main itself. These leaks often go unnoticed and lead to extremely high water bills. A leak left undetected can severely damage the infrastructure of a home over time. Further, one leak within a water main often leads to several others which can be devastating. If this happens, an entirely new, and costly, water main installation is often the only solution.

What Can be Done?

By knowing the state of a home’s water main, a San Antonio plumber can create an individualized plan which addresses all aspects of the existing water main, thus saving the homeowner both time and money. An old water main will receive any repairs and updates needed to keep it in top working condition. If a new water main is required, a trusted San Antonio plumber will work with the homeowner every step of the way while ensuring proper and professional installation with minimal interference. Schedule a water main inspection today for a healthy home tomorrow.
=====================
The Benefits of Septic Tank Cleaning

septic-tank-cleaningIn the hectic schedule of everyday life, it can be easy to forget about one of the most important parts of the house: the septic tank. However, the importance of cleaning a septic tank should never be ignored. Plumbing maintenance is an essential aspect of caring for a home, and could mean the difference between scheduling a cleaning every couple of years or being forced to do an entire overhaul on the wastewater disposal system. Here are a few benefits of keeping a clean septic tank to ensure proper function for years to come:

Extended Life of the Septic Tank

Septic tanks work to remove the solid waste from water disposed down the drains of a house, like the toilet or sinks, while the liquid waste goes through further treatment or is distributed into the soil absorption area. The solid waste has two options: floating to the top as a layer or sinking to the bottom as sludge. A San Antonio Plumber would state that by removing the solids from the wastewater routinely, you protect the soil absorption area from becoming clogged. Clogging leads to a failing septic system, which can result in wastewater backing up into the yard or the home.

Increased Overall Effectiveness

Not only will the septic system last longer with routine cleaning, its general ability to perform will improve as well. Having the septic tank pumped, and then avoiding use of the septic system, allows the tank and absorption area to dry out. The entire plumbing system benefits from the rest and any partially decomposed waste will fully break down in the absence of water. Over time, the removal of solid waste from the liquid waste becomes less effective and more solids end up in the soil absorption area, leading to a system failure. To prevent this, be sure to schedule septic tank cleanings with a San Antonio plumber and allow time for the system to rest without any use, like during a family vacation or business trip. Fortunately, with an expert plumber, costly repairs can be easily avoided with a simple maintenance appointment every three years or so.
===============================
An updated and beautiful bathroom will increase the value of a home immediately. Whether a homeowner is looking for a new bathroom design to enjoy right away, or the home is to be placed on the market, a new, beautifully crafted bathroom answers the call for luxury. From a few small changes to a complete bathroom overhaul, a San Antonio plumber can help complete the project.

A Skilled Plumber Can Make all the Difference

A homeowner often visualizes how a brand new bathroom should look, but may have difficulty deciding on the correct or most aesthetically pleasing layout. Further, a homeowner may have purchased a beautiful new sink or luxurious bathtub, but is unsure of the proper way to go about installing these new pieces. That is when a San Antonio plumber can help!

Qualified plumbers understand the craftsmanship required to install a new bathroom beautifully without overlooking any detail. A San Antonio plumber will work inside of a budget and time frame ensuring optimal results and preventing the hassle of approaching such a project alone.

A plumber can customize a new bathroom layout that speaks to both the elements of practicality and design. Additionally, a San Antonio plumber will craft a new plumbing and piping system, if needed, that will allow the bathroom to function with ease. Finally, a plumbing professional will install any brand-new appliances with the care and craftsmanship that each deserves.

Enlist the Help of a San Antonio Plumber Today

Trying to tackle a home repair project alone, such as the installation of a new bathroom, can often lead to costly mistakes and repairs. These can be easily avoided with the cost-effective approach of contacting an experienced plumber. Let professional plumbers use their many skills to assist in the beautification of a new bathroom.

San Antonio plumbers have the knowledge, skills, and abilities that will make all the difference. Don’t embark on a new bathroom journey alone and confused. Our plumbers will work with you every step of the way to ensure that your previously envisioned dream bathroom can soon become a reality.
=====================
Why You Need a Water Softener

water-softenerHard water is a result of having too much calcium, magnesium, or other minerals present thanks to groundwater dissolving them from the surrounding soil and water. It is a natural enough occurrence, though they can be very problematic. But, what does that mean for homeowners? In the long run it can mean costly repairs and, in a more immediate way, it means an unpleasant experience with water in your home. Hard water is one of the most common complaints of people who use groundwater in their homes and, thankfully, it’s very easy to get rid of.

When hard water is allowed to continue in a plumbing system, all kinds of problems arise as a result. The minerals will build up in the pipes, causing clogging and decreased effectiveness of the plumbing. On a more personal level, it keeps soap from properly lathering and leaves an undesirable scum in the tub and on the skin, making your skin feel dry and itchy. With hard water, yellow stains commonly appear on plumbing fixtures and spots refuse to wipe away on dishes. This no longer has to be the case if the proper actions are taken. While this may seem like a minor inconvenience, they should not be ignored. The San Antonio plumber suggests the installation of a water softener to combat these issues.

A water softener works by adding more sodium to the water to replace the ions of the other minerals. In this way, the minerals are negated and the water does not leave build up in the pipes or on the skin. It also has the ability to improve the taste of the water, as well as extend the life of any appliances that use the water. Laundry will become brighter and dishes will appear to be cleaner, without the gray film that can become problematic with hard water.

When a plumber comes to install a new water softener, he will shut off the water, drain the pipes, and choose an appropriate location to place the fixture. While the installation may seem complicated, an experienced San Antonio plumber will be very capable of handling the situation.
===============================
Traditional Water Heaters

water-heaterImagine standing in the shower, hot water flowing from the shower head, but it suddenly goes cold. The water heater has stopped working.

There are several options to consider if the time has come to replace the water heater, a San Antonio plumber indicates. Among the most common is a traditional tank water heater.

How they work

A traditional water heater has a storage tank which will store anywhere from 30 to 80 gallons of water. These units most often use natural gas, but can also be electric or use liquid propane. The units keep the water in the tank heated, which means they are always running. As water is used for those hot showers or washing the dishes, the tank refills and the water heater must work to reheat the water. This can mean the supply of hot water will run out.

Because of this, choosing the right size tank is an important decision. A 30-gallon water heater can easily support the needs of one to two people. A family of four would want a 40-gallon unit. Heaters with 50-gallon tanks will keep water warm for three to five people.

Safety issues

Unfortunately, malfunctions with water heaters can cause extensive damage to a home. There have been cases where water heaters have essentially become missiles and shot through the roof of homes.

A San Antonio plumber will make sure this doesn’t happen during installation of the water heater. A few of the problems to watch out for include:

Pressure build-up. Each water heater has a pressure-release valve. In the event the pressure inside the tank gets too high, it will release the water in the tank to prevent further damage. If this valve becomes damaged, the pressure inside the unit can cause it to explode.

Overflow. Each unit will have an overflow valve. This ensures the tank does not overfill, which could damage the heating elements.

A San Antonio plumber will be able to provide any other information needed about a traditional water heater. They also will professionally install and service the water heater and ensure it keeps those showers from going from hot to cold
====================
tankless-water-heater
Should You Choose a Traditional Storage Tank or a Tankless Hot Water Heater?

tankless-water-heaterIf your hot water heater is on the fritz, you have more options today than ever before when selecting your next model. Advancements in technology have produced energy-efficient models and a variety of sizes, making your selection as easy as possible. Here is a look at the advantages and disadvantages of owning a traditional storage style and a tankless option.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Installing a Traditional Storage Tank?

The traditional style of hot water heater features a large tank that can hold up to 100 gallons of water, depending on the size that you purchase. In order to install this style, your home needs to have sufficient space for its placement. Therefore, if you have a small home, you might not be able to purchase a larger capacity, reducing your access to hot water on demand. As a result, you might need to wait an hour or more to obtain hot water once the tank has been drained completely through use. If you have a large family, this can lead to squabbles as the individuals at the end of the shower line discover that there’s no more hot water to use.

With a storage tank, hot water is accessible within minutes of turning on a faucet or appliance. Typically, it takes longer to access hot water when your water lines are not insulated. However, the amount of time that most people have to wait to obtain hot water with a traditional storage tank is usually less than 30 seconds.

This style of hot water heater is available in several sizes, enabling consumers to choose the model that is suitable for their hot-water demands. It is possible to purchase a small tank that is less than 20 gallons as well as larger tanks up to 70 or more gallons. Popularly purchased sizes include both 40 and 50 gallon tanks, which are ideal choices for families. If your current water heater isn’t providing a sufficient supply of hot water, you should select a larger size when you decide to replace it.

Consumers can purchase a gas, oil, or electric version, giving them the flexibility to select a model that matches their available power supply. A licensed plumber has the skills to install each type.

Traditional styles of hot water tanks are generally less expensive than tankless versions, providing affordable options for individuals with tight budgets. They are also easy to vent and install, saving the consumer even more money.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Installing a Tankless Hot Water Heater?

Designed to heat water on demand rather than continuously, a tankless hot water heater offers financial savings that result from lower utility bills. Tankless models deliver a high level of energy efficiency, reducing the amount of power that is wasted on a daily basis. Once you turn on the hot-water tap, you receive heated water immediately, eliminating the one-to-two minute wait that often occurs with a storage-tank system. As you can see, tankless models also cut back on the amount of water that is wasted each day.

Tankless versions take up less space than the traditional storage tank, so this type of heater is the ideal choice for smaller homes. It offers a streamlined appearance while providing the same high quality of heated water that you would get with a bulkier storage tank.

Also known as the “demand water heater,” this style provides enough hot water for everyone to take a shower, wash the dishes, or do the laundry without running out of hot water. There’s no need to worry about being last in line to take a shower anymore, because you will always have a sufficient supply of heated water to use.

This style is available in electric and gas models, offering customers the flexibility they need to match up a hot water tank with their home’s existing utility setup. You simply choose the model that fits your home’s gas or electric energy source.

Homeowners can also choose tankless heaters offering different heating capacities. Even though you never run out of hot water, it is possible to experience a decrease in the temperature of the water if you are running several appliances (washing machine and dishwasher) along with the shower or bathtub. When you select a tankless model with a higher capacity rating, this risk is minimized.

Since tankless versions take up so little space, you always have the option to install two of them if your hot water demands are high. For example, you can install one unit that is setup to deliver hot water to your showers, tubs, and sinks and a second unit that is installed to provide heated water to the dishwasher and washing machine.

Tankless models are electronically controlled, so they are easy to use. Once your plumber sets up your heater, you can sit back and enjoy using it.

Should You Install a Traditional Storage Tank or a Tankless Hot Water Heater?

Unless you have professional training in plumbing services, you should hire a licensed plumber to install your hot water heater for you to ensure that the job is done properly. After all, you can expect your heater to last for several years as long as it is installed correctly.
======================
Septic Tank Cleaning and Why It Is Important

conventional-septic-tankHomes that aren’t hooked up to a public sewage system often have a septic tank and drain fields to handle their wastewater. This type of setup is also referred to as an individual wastewater treatment system. All of your wastewater from the kitchen, bathroom, and laundry flows into this system and is eventually returned to the environment through the drain fields. It is the septic tank’s job to clean this wastewater before introducing it back into the ground.

What Is a Septic Tank?

A standard septic tank is made from precast concrete, heavy-duty plastic, or metal. It is designed to hold all of the wastewater exiting a home, providing a storage place for solid wastes to accumulate until they are broken down and processed out of the system. Older versions consist of a single compartment, whereas newer models typically have two or three compartments. The tanks are available in different capacities, ranging from 1,000 to 1,500 gallons.

How Does a Septic Tank Work?

Knowing how a septic tank works is critical to understanding the importance of having it cleaned regularly. An inlet is located on one side of the tank. This is where all of the waste from your home enters the system. The bacteria inside the tank help to break down the solid waste.

Three layers are created during this process. The top layer of organic solids floats to the top of the tank and is called “scum.” The inorganic solids, which are referred to as “sludge” drop to the bottom of the tank. In between these two layers is a liquid known as the “effluent,” which is actually treated wastewater that is ready for expulsion into the environment. The effluent is transferred through an outlet that directs it through a draining system on its way to designated area known as the drain fields.

Three Important Reasons to Clean Out the Septic Tank

No matter which size or style of septic tank you have it is important to have it cleaned regularly to ensure that it is working properly. Unless you take care of your system, eventually it is going to fail. Here are three important reasons to arrange for septic tank cleaning.

Good Health: An improperly maintained septic tank leads to significant health risks created when inadequately treated wastewater draines into your yard, well, and surface water. A severely neglected tank might even cause backwash to flow into your home, introducing bacteria into it.

Financial Savings: Maintaining your septic tank through regular cleanings is less expensive than replacing it. When your tank is properly cleaned, the service technician can examine the tank for signs of structural damage, including cracks, leaks, and issues created over the years by the settling of the tank.

Property Value: If you decide to sell your property, an inspection of your septic tank could reveal problems that indicate the system hasn’t been maintained properly for years. As a result, you could lose a potential sale. You might be asked to reduce your asking price or be required to replace the system.

The Overall Picture

If you fail to clean out your tank regularly, the layers of sludge and scum begin to take over, thickening and growing in volume until little room is left for the effluent to exist and do its job. As a result, solid excrement enters the draining system each time that water enters your septic tank. If solids are permitted to overrun your drain fields in this manner, they can lead to clogs or a breakdown of the field’s ability to process wastewater properly. Solid wastes should never exit the tank in this manner. They are supposed to remain stored there until such time as you have the tank cleaned by a professional septic cleaning company.

Since most tanks are designed to hold only three years’ worth of waste, it is recommended that you have you arrange for septic tank cleaning after three years of use. If you use your home for large gatherings on a regular basis, frequently use the garbage disposal, or suspect a problem, it is recommended that you have your septic tank cleaned more frequently.

Champion Plumbing

If your septic tank needs cleaning or maintenance, give Champion Plumbing a call today to receive $30 off your next septic tank cleaning or inspection. Just mention this blog or see our San Antonio plumbing coupons.

=======================================
Water-Saving Tips That Save You Money

leaking-faucetFinding ways to save water is a task that pays for itself. One of the best places to get advice on water conservation in the home is to ask your San Antonio plumber. He has the expertise and knowledge needed to quickly assess the condition of your existing plumbing fixtures as well as the ability to diagnose specific areas that need improvement to reduce their use of water. If you want to save money on water bills, ask your San Antonio plumber to assist you in making your home more water efficient. In the meantime, here are a few water-saving tips to get you started.

Update Your Toilet

Switching over to a low-flow or dual-flush toilet is a great way to reduce your water usage. Today’s models are much better than the original styles and can save you as much as 40% of the water used to flush toilets.

Check for Silent Leaks in the Toilet

If you discover a silent leak, having it repaired can cut down your water usage considerably. Add a couple of drops of food coloring to the toilet tank and wait a few moments to see if the color leaks to the bowl. If it does, you should call a San Antonio plumber to repair the leak for you.

Replace Your Faucets

If you are still using faucets from ten or more years ago, it’s time to replace them. Today’s styles are designed with aerators that minimize your water usage while maintaining quality water pressure.

Switch out Your Showerhead

Newer showerheads are more energy-efficient than older ones. They are designed to deliver excellent water pressure while reducing water flow.

Install a Cut-Off Valve for the Shower

A cut-off valve makes it easy to turn off the water in between soaping up and rinsing off while showering.

Maintain Your Plumbing Equipment

It’s always a good idea to bring in a qualified San Antonio Plumber to give your plumbing a thorough annual review. A single leak can waste countless gallons of water, while increasing your water bills unnecessarily.

Switch Your Fine-Mist Sprinkler for a Large-Drop Model

Sprinkles that produce a fine mist are subject to higher levels of evaporation than ones using large droplets. Replace the one that you have with a model that delivers larger drops of water at a low angle to minimize the evaporation that occurs, particularly on hot days.

Check for Leaks throughout the Home

Hidden leaks can exist anywhere in your home. Checking for them is important not only to reduce your usage of water but also to prevent damage to your foundation, walls, ceilings, and possessions. Once a year, you should check for leaks using the following test. First, turn off all of your water-using devices and appliances. Make sure that the faucets are turned off tightly. Next, read your water meter and write down what you see. Wait about twenty to thirty minutes and go out and take a new reading. If the reading has changed, then you probably have a hidden leak that should be repaired by a plumber.
=====================
How to Choose a Good Plumber

hire-the-right-plumberFinding a good plumber is possible as long as you have the time to search for someone with a reputation for being dependable. You need to find somebody who has experience in this industry and who uses quality equipment and parts. Here are a few tips that can help you to make the perfect choice.

Choose a Professional

If you want quality work performed, your best option is to go with a professional plumbing company with an established presence in the community. After all, you need a plumber who has proper training and sufficient experience to be able to handle any type of plumbing installation, repair, or replacement. Even if your brother-in-law comes highly recommended, you should avoid asking him to complete a plumbing task if he hasn’t received any formal training. To verify that the individual you are hiring is a professional, ask for his license number and the name of his insurer.

Request a Referral

The first place to go when you are looking for a referral is family. Don’t stop with the first answer you get, because you might find a plumber who is referred by several family members instead of just one. If no one in the family has used a plumber recently, ask a few friends or co-workers. You can also look at a few local companies online. Check to see if they are a member of Angie’s List or if they have been rated by the Better Business Bureau (BBB). If you visit Angie’s List, you’ll get to look over reviews submitted by previous customers of the plumber.

Find Out How Long They Have Been in the Plumbing Business

A reputable plumber has usually been around for a while, so ask how long the company has been in business. You’ll want to select a plumbing company that has been in existence for several years. The only exception to this rule is when you choose to hire an individual who is just beginning in this profession. If you decide to choose a newly established professional, you should try and get as many references as possible, while also asking to look at his credentials.

Ask about Fees

If you don’t want to receive an unpleasant shock when you get the bill, talk to the plumber ahead of time about his fees. Find out if he charges by the hour or by the job. Some plumbers also charge a service fee just for showing up at your door. Once you finish talking about the fees, ask whether or not a written quote will be given and if the work is guaranteed or not.

Get Three Quotes

If you are concerned about the cost, contact three different plumbing professionals and ask for quotes. While the numbers are probably going to vary somewhat, they shouldn’t differ by a lot. If there is one quote that is a lot lower than the other two, it should be a red flag telling you not to use that plumber.

What to Do If You Need a Good Plumber in a Hurry

Unfortunately, if you need a plumber in a hurry because of an emergency, you probably won’t have time to do a thorough search. If that’s the case, simply try to find a plumber with a valid license and insurance coverage.
==========================
The Role of Bacteria in a Healthy Septic System

septic-tank-coversSeptic systems are more than just a series of pipes and drains: they’re living environments. The microbial system within, which includes bacteria, yeasts, and enzymes, plays an active role in both breaking down larger waste products and in clarifying water in preparation for reuse. Let’s take a look at just what is happening underneath the surface.

An Introduction to Septic System Structure

Your standard septic system begins indoors, as water, cleaners, waste products, and more enter the various drains and pipes of the home or business. These materials converge into a holding vessel called a “septic tank”, which is often buried underground nearby. These tanks have two chambers, and as material builds up in the initial chamber, the liquids (or “effluent”) are drained into a secondary one through small holes in the dividing wall. Effluent then passes out of the tank, into a series of gravel-lined trenches known as a “leach” or “drainage” field, which provides a layer of basic filtering before the liquids return to the water table. Solid waste remaining in the tank must be physically pumped out on a regular basis.

How Microbes Come Into Play

Because these solid materials must remain within the septic tank (or risk clogging the drainage field and causing serious backup), they must be removed with the use of septic pumping trucks. What may be surprising is how infrequently pumping is needed (the EPA recommends once every 3-5 years).

It’s all thanks to vast colonies of microorganisms living within the tank. These work round-the-clock to break down waste materials, converting much of the solids into liquids that join the stream of effluent and gases that simply dissipate through the soil or leach field. A healthy bacterial environment is crucial to maintaining septic system health, and without it, you’ll be facing frequent maintenance and nasty issues.

Are Bacteria-Boosting Additives Worth It?

Numerous companies market products promising to rejuvenate septic bacterial cultures, thereby combating the damage done by solvents like bleach and paint thinner, should they have made their way into the septic system. Some consumers may wonder whether these are truly worth the price.

The fact is that even though harsh chemicals can put a considerable dent into bacterial populations, it’s rather hard to wipe them out entirely. And since these microorganisms have extremely speedy reproductive cycles, most damages can be countered by natural means in mere hours or days, without the need for additives.

Champion Plumbing

If you need septic tank cleaning or help with additives in your septic tank, call the experts at Champion Plumbing. We never charge extra for plumbing services performed on nights or weekends and we always provide a written estimate before the plumbing services are performed. Call 210-393-9617 today!
================================

Written by 

Leave a Reply