The Primary Causes of Water Damage

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

Perhaps the most common reason we’re called upon for our emergency plumbing services at All Hours Plumbing is water damage. Whether in the home or business, water damage can create significant issues – both in the cost and health realms.

What are some of the main culprits in creating water damage in the home? Let’s look at a few, and how you can avoid them to prevent significant water damage repairs.

Broken Pipes and Hoses

This is the most common reason for water damage, both in the home or in commercial buildings. A burst water main, old pipes or damaged supply hoses to various water-related items are often the underlying reasons here – water damage can even be caused by ice-maker supply lines that fail. Regular maintenance for pipes and hoses is recommended to help ward off water damage.

Accidents

Sitting just behind broken pipes and hoses on the common water damage causes list is various accidents. These are mostly home issues – things like overflowing bathtubs, broken toilets and other issues caused directly by human error. These are most common with children around, so anyone with small children should take extra care to watch all water-related items.

Sewer Back Up

Sewer lines flow well outside your house, and there are obstacles that may cause a blockage in certain areas. These are often tree roots or branches – trees want water, and they may grow close to a source if they sense it. There are several enzyme drain treatments available that will help reduce the likelihood of this happening to you.

Basement Humidity

Mostly due to pressure buildup over time and aging infrastructure, humidity built up in the basement of certain homes can grow large enough to create water damage issues. Smaller issues here can use a dehumidifier to help, but larger ones may require professional waterproofing.

Flash Floods

These are less common, but they can occur in areas that don’t typically expect flooding – usually due to extreme weather or other circumstances.

Want to learn more about water damage and its signs, or interested in finding out about any of our other pluming services? Our technicians at All Hours Plumbing are waiting to assist you.

Standard Maintenance for Radiant Heat

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

For many homeowners, radiant heat is an excellent alternative to traditional heating and air systems. Using piped water, air or electricity to warm everything from floors to walls and ceilings keeps a home or business warm without flowing air, which can cause dust and allergens along with less even temperatures than radiant heat can provide.

At All Hours Plumbing, we provide full radiant heat services for your home or business. Once they’ve been installed, though, you need to keep an eye on a few basic maintenance items. Here are a few of the most important areas to stay on top of.

Pressure Check

The pressure on your system needs to be checked at least once a year, and is usually part of your standard maintenance through our technicians. We’ll check for pressure, which should remain constant throughout the system – if there are issues, it likely means there’s a leak in the pipes. This will lead to increased energy costs and utility bills, and in steel-pipe systems, it may require a replacement for pipes themselves. In cases where you’re using a water-based radiant heat system, leaking pipes will lead to corrosion and rust, and can cause larger issues down the line.

Pumps and Valves

The other important consideration for a radiant heat system is the pump, and this is one area where you’ll want to be on the lookout for signs. Most pumps operate so quietly that you won’t even know they’re there, but if this ever changes and you begin to notice the pump making louder noises, it could be a sign of issues.

The pressure release valve might have issues, or the reducing valve. Either of these valves failing might require pump replacement.

Efficiency Checks

In many cases, the quickest way to personally check for efficiency in these systems is to check your utility spending each month. Costs will rise and fall with the seasons, but within a given period of the year, costs should be relatively consistent with radiant heat systems. If you notice a big spike in usage in a weird spot, it could be the first sign that a leak or other issue has begun to take place in the system.

Want to learn more about radiant heat maintenance, or interested in any of our other plumbing services? Speak to the experts at All Hours Plumbing today.

Common Plumbing Myths Debunked

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

Within the world of plumbing, there’s no doubt there are a number of possible problems. Everything from water damage to major clogs can cause issues around a home or business, and at All Hours Plumbing, we’re here to keep you protected from these issues wherever possible.

Unfortunately, all the complexities of the plumbing world have led to several common myths about plumbing – some of which invent new problems that don’t even really exist! Let’s look at a few of these myths, and set the record straight.

Toilet Flow

There’s a decent chance you’ve heard our most common myth before: “Water drains in the opposite direction in the Southern Hemisphere!”

No, it doesn’t. The Coriolis force, which is caused by the earth’s rotation, has very little impact on the water in your toiler. Draining water depends on the structure of the plumbing itself – there are special situations where these structures might indeed cause certain toilets or tubs to flow in the other direction from what you’re used to, but the hemisphere you’re in doesn’t play a role here.

Plungers

Some people tend to think that a plunger can fix any clog in the system, no matter what. They’re very effective for many smaller clogs, but for some larger ones, they can even make things worse. For a large backup that won’t immediately respond to plunging, don’t push it – call the experts before you inflict more damage.

Lightning and Pipes

There’s a common myth that lightning can’t travel through pipes, but this is false. Metal piping can conduct lightning, and water does the same. If there’s a major storm in your area, it’s a good idea to refrain from taking a bath or shower just to be safe.

Goldfish

Flushing a goldfish that’s died is fine in most cases, but take very special care not to do so while one is still alive. Live goldfish can live while passing through an entire sewer system, but they can create major changes to the ecosystem – they become oversized giants and reproduce at insane rates, which can cause additional issues.

Leaky Faucet

That leaky faucet isn’t much of an issue, right? After all, it’s only dripping every now and then, and a drip isn’t that much.

Wrong. If your faucet leaked one drop per second for the next year, you’d waste over 2,000 gallons of water before it was all said and done. Even a small leak can benefit greatly from service to prevent water loss, and a rise in utility bills.

Want to help correct more plumbing myths, or interested in any of our other plumbing services? Contact the plumbers at All Hours Plumbing today.

Common Indicators of Boiler Issues

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

A boiler can be a much more efficient for heating than a standard system for some people, but it’s also vital to make sure boiler repairs are kept up on. The right maintenance can save you costly issues, and prolong the life of your boiler for years.

At All Hours Plumbing, we offer comprehensive boiler service for any issues that arise. You ca help us out, too – there are several telltale signs that there might be issues taking place in your boiler. Here are a few of the most common.

Leaks

Leaks are an abnormal situation for a boiler unit. They can cause water to accumulate at the base of the boiler, and water loss will limit the operational capabilities. This will cause the boiler to use more fuel than normal, and will raise your utility bills. If you notice any pooling water near the boiler, speak to our professionals right away.

Noises

If you notice clanging, rattling or hissing sounds in the boiler, emergency service is likely needed. This is a sign that there are iron or sludge deposits, which can lead to overheating and automatic shutdowns in the boiler. If not addressed, these issues can result in wasted fuel and a permanent inability to maximize boiler function.

Smell

A negative odor can signal a gas or oil leak, which can cause hazards and increase costs due to wasted fuel. While you won’t be able to smell it, these kinds of leaks might also mean that carbon monoxide is leaking out and causing health issues for people in the building.

Soot and Debris

If you notice these items in the boiler room, it could be a sign that there are issues with thermal tacking and heat loss. These issues will often require immediate service.

Corrosion, Stains and Rust Flakes

Each of these corrosion-related items can often be the precursor to fuel loss, building damage and health issues. They tend to signal insufficient cleaning in the system, but quick attention here can often ward off larger issues before they come.

Want to learn more about boiler maintenance and repair, or any of our other emergency plumbing services available? The experts at All Hours Plumbing are standing by.

Tips for Home Furnace Maintenance

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

A huge part of our mission at All Hours Plumbing is to help you get the absolute maximum lifespan out of your important home or commercial utility features, and a big one on our list is the furnace. We offer furnace services ranging from basic furnace repair to full-on furnace replacement, with the expertise to help you address any issues that may come up over time.

You can put yourself in a good position in this area before you even call us for major repairs, in many cases. Here are a few basic tips to help you keep a gas-powered furnace operational for as long as possible.

Air Filter

One of the simplest and most important tasks for a furnace is replacing the air filter. Furnace filters are designed to trap dust, lint and any other debris from entering the furnace itself. Over time, though, they collect large amounts of this debris and need to be changed. This should be done roughly twice per year.

Different units may vary, but in most cases, the filter will be located either inside the blower door or between the blower and the return air duct. In most furnaces, the filter is very easy to remove and replace. Any dirt or clogs will be visible to the naked eye – simply replace it with a new one if they’re present.

Cleaning Elements

The filter will capture much of this debris, but some can still sneak through. Basic furnace maintenance can include cleaning basic blower assembly, along with pulleys and belts when the filter is being replaced. This may take the removal of a basic covering panel over the filter, or you have to slide out the fan unit.

Safety

When doing these or any other tasks, observe the proper safety habits. If you’re doing anything more than simple filter replacement, turn off all power to the system through the circuit that runs to the furnace. If you smell gas at any point, do not attempt any further work – call a professional right away, and leave the home until they’ve arrived.

Proper Inspection

Finally, having the furnace inspected by a reputable and professional inspector is vital. We’re in the prime period of these checks now – spring means the end of heating season, and you can kill two birds with one stone by having your furnace and HVAC system inspected at the same time.

To schedule a maintenance appointment or learn more about furnace maintenance, contact us at All Hours Plumbing today.

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