Frequently Asked Questions

Quahog Plumbing has served Bristol County residents for over 15 years and during that time, we’ve received many questions about plumbing repairs, problems, and installations.

Here are the most frequently asked questions asked by our customers.

Does your toilet continue running after the flush cycle? It’s a common household plumbing problem that stumps many homeowners. Some try jiggling the handle or flushing again to fix it. To fix a toilet that continues running after flushing, you have to diagnose the cause. Toilets that constantly run could be caused by one of the following issues:
  • The float needs to be adjusted
  • The flapper is worn out and needs to be replaced
  • The refill tube is too long

How To Lower The Float

A misadjusted float is the most common cause of continually running toilets. What happens is overflow water leaks into the bowl from the overflow tube, which happens when you have too much water in the tank. The float dictates the amount of water in the tank, so adjusting it lower should decrease the amount of water. Lowering the float is simple. Toilets typically come with one of two kinds of float mechanisms, one attached to a float arm or a column float. Lowering the water in a toilet with a float arm requires loosening a screw and lowering the float arm. To lower the water in a toilet with a column float, loosen the screw and move the float down. Once finished, flush the toilet to see if you’ve solved the problem.

Replacing A Flapper

Another common cause of continually running toilets is worn-out flappers. Flappers are typically made from rubber and become brittle over time, causing the seal to fail. Replacing a flapper is easy, simply remove the old one and replace it with a new one. Flappers are usually attached via a chan, so all you have to do is unhook it and replace it.

Shortening The Refill Tube

A less common problem is a refill tube that’s too long. When this tube is too long for the toilet, it continues putting water into the bowl because it’s not positioned correctly in the overflow tube. Pull the tube out of the overflow, position it above the overflow, and trim it to the correct length. If you’re not handy or would rather have a professional plumber conduct these repairs, call the experts at Quahog Plumbing.
If your water heater has suddenly started making strange noises like popping or banging, you’re probably wondering what the heck is going on. Do you need to call a plumber? Is it getting ready to blow up? These are common questions people have when their water heater acts up. However, before calling a plumber to replace your water heater, it’s helpful to understand what may be causing this common problem and know if it’s a serious issue or something you can fix yourself. On the surface, water heaters are simple appliances; water flows into a storage tank and is heated until it’s ready for use. The problem arises when sediment builds up in the tank over time. Most people in the country have some degree of hard water, water with a high concentration of minerals. As the water heater ages, layers of calcium and sediment build-up, trapping water underneath the layers. When the heating elements kick in to heat the water, it bubbles through the sediment layers, which causes the strange sounds you hear. Sometimes, bits of sediment break free and swirl around in the tank, which can cause rumbling or banging. So, when your water heater starts making these popping or banging sounds, it’s almost always caused by sediment. The best way to prevent this problem and extend the lifespan of your water heater is to flush the tank at least once a year; this prevents the sediment from building up and layering in the tank. If you’ve never performed maintenance on your water heater, you may still be able to flush it and solve the problem. However, if the sediment is too hard, your only solution may be to replace the water heater.
Low water pressure is a problem many homeowners live with because they assume it’s the way the house was built. Living with low water pressure makes it a hassle to perform routine tasks and chores like washing, showering, and cooking. If you get your water from the city or other municipal provider, it’s pumped from a water source to a treatment facility and then flows into high pressure, high altitude tanks such as a water tower. Water flows from the tank to your home via gravity, creating natural pressure. Some cities use pressure boosters to maintain equal pressure throughout the system. When you experience low water pressure in your home, it could be due to several reasons, including:
  • Excessive household demand for water
  • Faulty or damaged fixtures
  • Broken pressure regulators
  • Clogged pipes
  • Corroded plumbing
The most common cause of lower water pressure at home is having two or more plumbing fixtures working simultaneously. For example, you might run the dishwasher when someone is taking a shower, and they’ll notice the pressure coming out of the showerhead has dropped. Or, you might see it’s taking longer to fill the tub when someone is outside watering the lawn. The loss of water pressure caused by overuse is easily solved; use one appliance or fixture at a time to maximize flow. Another common reason homeowners experience a reduction in water pressure is corroded pipes or pipes with mineral deposits. Homes built with galvanized pipes in the 50s are susceptible to low water pressure, as these pipes are now rusting and caked with mineral buildup, restricting water flow. When old, corroding pipes are the problem, typically, the only way to fix it is by repiping your home. To effectively diagnose the cause of your water pressure problems, call the experts at Quahog Plumbing.
People who become frustrated when they have frequently clogged drains wonder why this keeps happening. In most cases, drains become clogged because people aren’t careful about what goes down. In the kitchen, it’s common for people to pour cooking grease or oil down the drain. The problem is that these substances harden over time, creating sticky clogs as other bits of debris get wrapped up in them. Another problem in the kitchens is food scraps. Instead of using a garbage disposal or putting food waste in the trash, people put it down the drain. Over time, these scraps of food build-up and decay, causing clogs and rotten odors. Bathroom drains are also highly susceptible to clogs. Shower and bath drains often clog from soap and hair, and toilets clog because people flush items that should go into the trash. Sometimes clogs occur because of issues with your pipes. For example, tree roots are notorious for causing clogs in main water and sewer lines. If a tiny crack forms, tree roots can burrow in and grow to such a degree that they choke off the water supply. Other times, calcium and minerals collected in your pipes over time cause water to slow and eventually stop. The best way to deal with clogged drains is to do everything you can to prevent them in the first place. Be mindful about what you put down the drain and consider using mesh drain covers to stop debris from going in. Call Quahog Plumbing for expert drain diagnostics and cleaning if you have stubborn clogs you can’t get rid of no matter what you do.
In a word, yes. Chemical drain cleaners are popular ways for homeowners to deal with clogs because they’re inexpensive, easy to use, and promise to clear drains quickly. However, more people are becoming aware of the potential dangers when using these products. Drain cleaners come in various forms, including liquid, gel, foam, crystal, and powder, but they all work basically the same. When put into the drain, these products react with the clog to create heat and gas, dissolving the clog. Most drain cleaners use harsh chemicals to work, including lye, caustic potash, peroxide, or bleach, which makes these products potentially fatal if swallowed. What makes chemical drain cleaners dangerous to your plumbing is that they can’t differentiate between the clog and the pipe, so they eat away at everything in their path. And, if the product fails to clear your drain, it sits in the pipe; the longer it sits, the more damage it can do. Despite what these products say on the label, none of them are totally safe, and people who rely on them to unclog their drains will eventually pay the price when their pipes rupture and leak. Hiring a plumber to unclog your drains is the smarter way to go. Plumbers use methods that remove clogs while keeping your plumbing system safe.
More homeowners are becoming concerned about making their homes more energy-efficient and doing what they can to help the environment. And one area they look to is their water heater -- one of the largest energy consumers in the home. Making the water heater run more efficiently helps the environment and saves money on your energy bill. Instead of looking for a more energy-efficient traditional water heater, some residents now consider alternatives like tankless water heaters, which are supposedly less expensive to run and maintain than tank-style water heaters. With a traditional water heater, water flows into a storage tank where it’s heated until ready for use. Heating elements keep the water hot, which means you may have water sitting in the tank all day being heated when you’re not using it -- that wastes energy. Tankless water heaters superheat the water coming into the system, meaning it heats water as needed. Also, because traditional water heaters rely on a storage tank to keep hot water until it’s ready, it means it can run out if you have high hot water demands, such as when you have family in town. On the other hand, tankless water heaters heat the water as you’re using it, which means you never run out. Although tankless water heaters are more expensive to install, they often pay you back in the money you save over time. If you’re on the fence about getting a tankless water heater, call to schedule a consultation.

Quahog Plumbing has over 15 years of experience. There isn’t a plumbing problem we can’t handle. Contact us today in Bristol County at 401-307-5451.