Plumber, Plumbing Repairs, Kenmore WA, Bothell, WA
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Plumbing Tips
If you're a "Do it Yourself (DIY) Person", here are some useful tips. These simple tips can help you do the smaller plumbing tasks with basic tools. If you need help with any of these projects or any other project , contact us today. We are always glad to help, no job is too small!
Shutting Off Your Water
Shutting off water to a fixture. If you want to shut off the water to a particular sink or toilet, look for a valve under the sink or behind the toilet.

It's desirable to have valves which control the flow of water to each fixture in your house so that it's not necessary to turn off the water to the entire house to fix or replace a particular fixture. We can easily install these for you.

Shutting off water to the entire house. If you're not finding a valve to a specific fixture, you can shut off the water to the entire house. Look for a main valve outside, possibly located in the basement on an outside wall that faces the street. If you don't have a basement, it may be located outside on a wall of your house. There should also be a main valve near the street or sidewalk in front of your house, although it may require a special tool to turn off this valve. Often this water shut-off valve is located in a buried box with a cement or metal lid.

Know in advance how to shut off the water. It's a good idea to know where and how to turn off the water to your house in case of an emergency. Water pipes can break due to an earthquake, a freeze or other causes.

If you need help in locating and working the shut-off valve, a neighbor may be able to help you, or you can always call us and we will have a technician there as quickly as possible to help you out with your plumbing emergency needs.
 
 
Preventing Clogs
* Buy and install a little strainer to place over the drain for trapping food, hair, soap, etc. Clean the strainer regularly.
* Collect cooking fats in a container such as a can and dispose of it in the garbage rather than pouring fats down the drain. Fats can solidify in cold pipes and create clogs.
* Pour a kettle of boiling water down the kitchen drain weekly to melt fat that might be building up.
* Pour a mixture of a handful of baking soda with 1/2 a cup of vinegar down the kitchen drain weekly. This will break down fat and keep the drain smelling fresh too.
* Use an enzyme drain cleaner regularly.
 
 
Rusted Pipes
If your home or building was built prior to 1980, then the chances are that you have galvanized (steel) plumbing pipes. Galvanized pipes rust. A one-inch galvanized pipe can become so clogged with rust over the years that it narrows to where you can hardly see through it.

The result can be low water pressure or clogged drains. Worse, the pipes can leak or burst, damaging your home or business.

If you see signs of rust on the pipes or if they suffer from low water pressure, or clogs or leaks which just keep happening, then we recommend repiping with copper pipes, which do not rust. We are copper repiping specialists, and we can give you a free estimate for this type of work.
 
 
Burst Pipe
If a burst pipe is flooding your home, shut off the water to your house. See the section on Shutting Off Your Water.
 
Emergency Steps for a Gas Leak
If you suspect a gas leak in your home, take action immediately:

1. If there are cigarettes burning or any open flames, including pilot lights, put them out immediately and properly.
2. Avoid any possible sources of electrical sparks. Do not turn on or off any electrical appliances or lights, do not use the phone, and do not plug in or unplug electrical appliances.
3. If it’s a very small leak, open all the doors and windows. If it’s larger, don’t take the time for this step.
4. Get everyone out of the house.
5. If you can, turn off the gas at the meter for your home. It is outside the home. Usually, the valve is on a vertical pipe to the left of the meter. The valve handle should be a straight blade. Use a crescent wrench or pipe wrench to give the handle a quarter turn so that it is perpendicular to the pipe – so that it looks like it’s sitting across the pipe as if it’s “blocking” it. (It is a good idea to hang such a wrench near the meter for emergencies.)
6. From a safe distance, right away call your gas company and 911.
7. Do not turn your gas back on and do not re-enter the house. Your gas company will take the next steps.
 
 
Garbage Disposal Problem Prevention
Preventing Garbage Disposal Problems

* Use plenty of water when running the disposal.
* Avoid overloading.
* Don't dispose of hard or stringy things like bones, fruit pits, celery, asparagus or corn husks.
* Make sure that your dishwasher does not drain into your garbage disposal.
* Never use a caustic drain opener in the disposal.
 
 
How to Save Money, Water & Energy
* Fix leaking faucets right away. Leaks can waste gallons of water quickly. If hot water is leaking, it’s wasting energy too.
* Insulate hot water heaters and pipes to prevent heat loss. If you’re doing it yourself, be careful not to cover the floor, top, thermostat or burner compartment of the heater. When in doubt, for safety, call us for our expert advice or to do the job for you.
* Install low flow showerheads and aerators in faucets.
* When buying a new water heater, select one with thick insulation. It may cost more initially, but it will pay off over the years in energy savings.
* Hot water heaters sometimes come from the factory with high temperature settings. Lower the thermostat on your water heater to 115°F.
* Each month, drain about a quart of water from your water heater - until the water runs clear. This removes sediment that lowers the efficiency of your heater. Follow the manufacturer's advice on the exact steps for draining the heater.
* Favor showers. Showers use less hot water than baths. A bath takes 15-25 gallons; a five-minute shower takes less than 10 gallons.
 
 
SAVE Up To $300 On A New Hot Water Heater
Uncle Sam Will Pay up to $300 of the Installed Price of Your New Energy-Efficient Hot Water Heater!

Newer hot water heaters are more energy-efficient. Uncle Sam will pay up to $300 of your installed price by cutting your federal income tax bill with a $300 income tax credit. These savings are on top of savings on your utility bills. Of course, you're also helping the planet.

If you have been thinking about upgrading your hot water heater, this is the time to do it. The federal tax break applies only for hot water heaters in service by December 31, 2011. Call us today to find out how you can take advantage of these savings.