As plumbing professionals, we get a lot of questions about plumbing. We decided to put together a list of most common plumbing questions and post the answers in the blog on our new and just launched website.
1. Why Are My Recent Water Bills Increasing?
There could be a few reasons why your water bills have started to rise. You may have a silent or hidden leak either in the house or outside it. First of all we recommend to check your toilets and make sure that they aren't leaking. Leaking toilet can contribute to a lot of water usage and cost you around $100 extra per year on your water bill. If the water continues to run into the bowl after the toilet is flushed, a mechanism in your toilet isn't working and needs to be replaced. There is a simple test to check if your toilet is leaking or not. Add some food coloring in the back tank of your toilet and wait an hour (without using it). Check back to see if the water in the bowl has changed colour. If it has, unfortunately, you have a leak. In this situation you should call a professional.
Another possibility is a leak in the pipes outside or underground. You can check for this kind of leakage by shutting down the water to your home and then taking a look at your water meter to see if it is still spinning. If it is, give us a call and we will schedule a plumbing inspection to detect a leak and fix it.
2. How Do I Unclog My Drain?
Clogged drains are one of the most common plumbing problems. Blockages aren’t only caused by what goes into the drain that shouldn’t (such as grease, food matter, wipes, feminine products, etc.) – but can also be caused by external interferences. Some common external issues are tree roots, bellied pipes, and even birds’ nests.
We often take our drainage systems for granted, and sometimes we mistreat them. Although a clogged drain can be a major inconvenience, it is a relatively easy problem to fix for the professional with a right tool on hand.
Call us and book an appointment with our Local Plumber for drain cleaning services and drain camera inspection. We can inspect your drain system from the interior of the pipes to locate the exact cause of the problem and offer you a solution that will keep you out of drain issues for a long time.
3. Are Chemical Drain Cleaners Safe to Use on my Clogged Sink?
Drain cleaners are highly toxic and should always be kept away from children and pets. But what many people don't know is that these toxic chemicals are also incredibly harmful to your plumbing system! The toxins cause erosion and deterioration of the pipes from inside out, resulting in costly drain line repairs and replacements. We highly recommend you to stay away from such drain-cleaning products and instead choose an environmentally safe option with enzymes and friendly bacteria products that will keep grease and sludge from building up inside of your pipes. If the problem is regularly repeated please don’t wait for the bigger troubles and hire a professional Plumber to get to the root cause of the issue.
4. How Do I Prevent My Pipes from Freezing?
It doesn’t matter whether you have metal or plastic pipes, water can still freeze causing bursting of pipes and causing water damage to your home. The wintertime in Ontario can produce temperatures in the minus teens and even below. Outdoor pipes are more susceptible to freezing due to being exposed to colder, harsher conditions than indoor pipes. Remember to disconnect hoses and water sprinklers and switch them off before the temperature drops too much.
Try and keep indoor and outdoor pipes well insulated with expanding foam where possible. Inside pipes (both hot and cold) can be insulated with a heated reflector light, foam padding or even newspaper. Material and joins can be secured using tape.
Make sure you have insulated colder parts of the house like the basement or attic areas, which are susceptible to draughts.
Remember that if you have one frozen or burst pipe, it can affect the others in the system so all pipework will need to be checked. Also, it is a good idea to ask your plumber for a consultation on insulating the walls if you have had problems with exterior pipes to prevent them from bursting in the future. Call Local Plumbers at Atre Drain and Plumbing at 647-977-9662 today for help and advice.
5. Why do I run out of hot water so quickly in the shower?
There are a couple of reasons you may be running out of hot water so quickly.
One factor that may cause you to quickly run out of hot water in the shower is the volume of water that your shower head allows through per minute. Older shower heads put out 19 litres per minute. A new shower head will put out about 10 litres per minute. By switching to a new shower head you can essentially double the length of time you have hot water in the shower.
Another reason can be the size of the water tank. Sometimes, the demands of the plumbing system change over time. For example, if a suite is added to a house and more people are using the hot water. Considering a gas tankless option can provide you with unlimited hot water so you don't run into this issue again. Choosing a 60-gallon tank over the 40-gallon size is also an option when considering replacement.
Another situation can happen if you have electric water heater. It usually has two elements (top and bottom) that heat the water, and the most common issue is that only the top portion of the tank is being heated because the lower element isn't working. The good news is that these elements can be replaced, and you don't necessarily need a brand new tank.
There is also a reset button on an electric water heater that can trip if there is a more serious problem going on. In this case, we recommend you call a professional to take a closer look.
If you have a gas hot water tank, the most common reason is the dip tube, a piece of pipe that directs the cold water to the bottom of the tank to be heated. As the tank ages over time, this dip tube can get shorter causing the cold water to mix with the hot water.
6. Why is my faucet dripping?
Most faucets at some point will drip depending on their age and wear. This is usually cause by hard water, and is fairly simple to fix. You may just need to replace a couple of worn out parts such as cartridges, washer stems, etc. Call us at 647-977-9662 to book a repair.
By turning off your faucets gently rather than with force, you will extend the life of your faucets.
If you have any further plumbing related questions, please feel free to call us at 647-977-9662.