Benefits of a Boiler Heating System

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

It’s the coldest time of the year, and staying warm in your home is a top priority as the snow starts falling. It’s time to make sure maintenance is up to date on heating and water systems, and time to make repairs if there are any issues.

For some people, it’s time to check on a boiler heating system. At All Hours Plumbing, boiler service is one of our specialties, and we employ expert technicians experienced with all boiler repair and service needs.

For some who haven’t heard of them, this will raise the question: What exactly is a boiler heating system? Let’s look at the basics, and how it can benefit your home.

Is a Boiler the Same as a Hot Water Heater?

No. In fact, while they both share the simple fact that they heat water, the purposes for which they do so couldn’t be much more different.

A hot water heater warms water in preparation to send it through pipes to a needed area in the home – sinks, showers and laundry. A boiler, though, heats water to much higher temperatures by literally boiling them, hence the name. It converts water into steam, which is used to heat a home.

What are Advantages of Steam in Heating?

There are several elements that make steam heating from a boiler more attractive than regular air for many people:

  • Denser than air – holds more heat
  • Lighter than water – can travel more quickly and without using as much energy
  • Green – often much friendlier to the environment
  • Efficient – boilers are on a closed loop system, meaning steam turns back into water and goes back into the boiler to be re-used once the heat has been extracted from it

Other Boiler Features

There are a few other draws to boilers as well:

  • User-friendly programming
  • Clean heating that doesn’t produce dust particles or other allergens
  • Can do many (or all) of the same jobs as a water heater – often, it can eliminate the need for a water heater
  • Quiet operation – virtually silent
  • Longevity – most systems will last a minimum of 10 years, and up to several decades

Want to learn more? All Hours Plumbing is a premier provider of boiler installation and maintenance, and of all other plumber services. Our service professionals are ready to assist you.

Where to Find Water Leaks

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

If the plumbing system in your home has a leak, it can make your monthly bill go up and cause water damage to your house. It is best to find and have these leaks repaired by a professional right away.

There are a few leaks that you will want to keep an eye out for:

Hot Water Heater

Every water heater has a pressure relief valve that makes sure there isn’t too much pressure built up in the unit. The drain pipe that this valve is connected to can leak if it is old or damaged.

Listen for a hissing sound in order to check for a leak. The sound is air at a high pressure trying to get out through a small hole or crack.

Toilet Tank

Your toilet’s tank could be leaking and you would have no clue. Add a few drops of food coloring to the tank of the toilet to check for leaks. Wait several minutes and then check the toilet bowl, if the colored water is in the bowl then you have a leak that needs to be repaired.

If you have multiple toilets, you should repeat this process for all of them to ensure you do not have more than one problem.

Faucets

Most homes have multiple faucets spread throughout, including the kitchen sink, bathroom sink, outside on the side of the home, and shower heads.

Faucets can come loose from their connection and have water trickle down them. Leaky faucets are not uncommon, so make sure to check all faucets in your home periodically.

Savings

Finding any leak in your home can potentially save water and money when you call the plumber. Being able to tell the plumber where the leak is means they can begin fixing it immediately, saving on inspection and labor time.

Knowing the general vicinity of where the leak could be will even help the plumber locate it quicker.

The sooner you find water leaks in your home, the more savings you will have and less water damage you will experience.

Signs of a Hidden Leak

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Hidden water leaks can become very costly if left untreated. They will not only damage the room where the leak started, but the water can move throughout the house, causing damage to other rooms as well.

Here are some things that will help you to recognize the sometimes not-as-obvious signs that you have a hidden leak, and get a plumber on the job as soon as possible.

Water Bill Increase

If your household’s water usage hasn’t changed but you notice that your water bill has been going up each month, this could mean that you have a leak.

Look back at your last six months’ worth of water bills and see if you can find when the amount jumped most drastically. This will give you an idea of how long you have had the leak and what potential damage you may find.

Mildew and Mold

Mold and mildew build up in different places within a room as a result of a pipe that is hidden in the wall or under the floor, leaking.

Floors, ceilings, and walls can be harbors for mold and mildew. If you notice this occurring all of a sudden, contact a plumber so the leak can be found and fixed.

Floor Damage

If a floor that is stained has loose tiles or feels like it bounces or moves when you walk on it, more than likely there is water damage.

This happens most often in bathrooms and should be taken care of as soon as possible. If not, the floor could buckle and rot sooner or later, causing even more issues.

Odors

If you have an intense musty or earthy smell, you can almost guarantee you have a hidden leak. The water has nowhere to go and is hidden in the walls, floors, or ceilings, never having a chance to dry, therefor causing the horrible smell.

Stained Ceiling

Stained ceilings are a sign that water is leaking from bathroom pipes and traveling through the house. This happens most times in homes that have a second-story bathroom.

Water can travel long distances though a home’s plumbing system, so the leak could possibly cause issues throughout the home.

Wall Damage

A dead giveaway of a hidden leak is warped and stained walls in bathrooms or other rooms. Drywall will become soft and weak and break into pieces if there is a leak in the wall.

Some signs are more apparent than others, but knowing what to look for will help a plumber attack an issue while it is still minor, instead of waiting until it becomes a plumbing emergency.

What Your Plumbing Says about You

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A plumber could know everything about your plumbing habits, good or bad, just by looking at your plumbing system. Based on the problem they came to fix, they will know precisely how you caused it, despite what you say.

Mold in the Bathroom

If you have a plumber come for a repair and they see mold, they will instantly know that you take long showers at high temperatures. The amount of steam increases as the temperature of the water goes up.

The lengthier showers you take, the longer steam and moisture will sit in the room. If you do this often and especially when you don’t run an exhaust fan, mold will grow in your bathroom at a quicker pace.

Slow Draining Bath

Most often when you have a slow-moving drain, hair is the reason. Whether someone in the home has long hair or a lot of body hair, it will accumulate in the drain pipe, causing blockages.

To avoid drain clogs caused from hair build up, get a drain guard. Any hair that comes out in the shower will gather over the drain guard to be easily whipped clean after each bath or shower.

Soap can collect and build up in the pipes also, so try to use as little as possible.

Frequently Clogged Toilets

While toilets will clog every now and then, it should not be backing up numerous times a week. If clogs are happening regularly, it is likely that you are using your toilet to flush items other than toilet paper.

Plumbing is not designed to handle paper towels, wipes, cotton swabs, or toiletry packaging. Put a garbage can in your bathroom and throw your trash in there.

When there is a need for a plumbing repair, the plumber will typically know how the issue came about. It would be a good idea to listen to your plumber’s advice and adjust your habits accordingly, moving away from having these problems in the future.

Top Plants for Removing Indoor Air Toxins

Written by SLC Plumbing on . Posted in Blog

Most spend the majority of their day inside, so indoor air quality is really important for your health. More than just a decoration, house plants can be used to help make the indoor air quality of your home better.

If you are looking to improve the quality of the air in your home, consider getting some of these plants. The plants listed are ranked as some of the best for getting rid of carbon monoxide, benzene, and formaldehyde from the air in your home.

Rubber Plant

Perfect for growing inside because it does not need any sunlight; however, while the plant is growing, make sure you water frequently.

While there are many subspecies of rubber plant, each one will have similar benefits. Oxygen production of a rubber plant is greater than most other indoor plants, allowing it to purify more air in less time.

Bamboo Palm

With its capability to remove toxins such as benzene and trichloroethylene, this is one of the best plants to have in your home. If you continue to re-pot them, they can get big enough to fill up some unused space in your house as well.

If you live in a place with harsh winters, bamboo palm will help to restore some of the moisture that tends to dry up due to indoor heating.

Spider Plant

A common choice for an indoor plant, spider plants remove formaldehyde along with xylene and toluene from the home. Spider plants are easy to care for and do just fine inside.

Moth Orchid

Moth Orchids are particularly good at taking care of xylene and toluene. These two chemicals usually get into the home because a large number of household items contain them.

These orchids are one of the pickier indoor plants, only needing watering once a week.

Peace Lily

Another popular choice for an indoor plant, not only are they visibly appealing, but peace lilies can help keep your air free of ammonia, formaldehyde, benzene trichloroethylene, xylene, and toluene.

Peace lilies can flourish without constant watering and little sunlight. This and its ability to rid so many toxins make it one of the most comprehensive indoor plants you can choose.

Even though many plants can help increase the air quality in your home or office, it is important to have your air filters changed and HVAC system checked regularly by HVAC professionals.

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