Back to School With Plumbing 101: Learning the Basics of Your Home's Plumbing

Important Plumbing Basics for Homeowners to Know

By understanding how plumbing works and knowing some essential information about it, like how to recognize issues, individuals can make more informed decisions and better care for their plumbing systems. Whether someone is a new homeowner or simply seeking to expand their knowledge, this article aims to equip readers with essential plumbing insights. Let's dive in and explore important things to know about a home’s plumbing that can help prevent plumbing emergencies and save money.

Energy and Water-Saving Plumbing Fixtures

tubPlumbing fixtures serve as the unsung heroes of homes, working tirelessly to deliver the water necessary for daily tasks and moments of relaxation. From the refreshing shower head that greets you in the morning to the comforting warmth of a water heater on cold nights, these fixtures play a vital role in everyday life. The plumbing fixtures in homes have evolved into more water-saving and energy-efficient models, enabling homeowners to conserve resources and save on utility bills. Some examples of plumbing fixture upgrades that can help homeowners save on water and energy costs include the following: 

Symptoms of Plumbing Problems

billThough mostly tucked away behind walls and under floors, the home's plumbing system can sometimes provide subtle hints of trouble. Spotting these warning signs early on can save homeowners from more significant issues in the future. Common red flags that indicate potential plumbing problems include poor water pressure, slow draining, high water bills, foul smells, and changes in the appearance of the water. When encountering these signs, seeking the expertise of a skilled plumber becomes essential to address the underlying issues effectively.

  • Poor Water Pressure: When the once-strong shower stream or water pressure from the tap transforms into a feeble trickle, it could indicate underlying plumbing issues such as leaks or pipe blockages.
  • Slow Draining: If sinks or bathtubs take an eternity to empty, it's often a symptom of clogged pipes, necessitating professional intervention to keep the plumbing flowing smoothly.
  • High Water Bills: Unexplained spikes in water bills can be puzzling. Plumbing leaks, even minor ones, might be the hidden culprits causing water wastage and inflating costs.
  • Foul Smells: A musty or foul odor from drains can signal potential sewer line issues. Ignoring this unsettling signal may lead to worsening sewer line blockages or other problems.
  • Changes in the Water’s Appearance: Sudden changes in the color or taste of tap water may be a warning of pipe corrosion or contamination. Prompt investigation is essential to maintain the safety and quality of the water supply.

Plumbing Maintenance

Regular plumbing maintenance is vital in ensuring the optimal functioning of a home's plumbing system. By investing in routine check-ups and expert care, homeowners can proactively prevent plumbing issues before they escalate into costly problems and extend the plumbing’s lifespan. 

Skilled plumbers can conduct thorough inspections of pipes, faucets, and fixtures, identifying and addressing potential issues and leaks to prevent water damage and high water bills from becoming a significant concern. Moreover, cleaning drains and testing water pressure are essential maintenance tasks that promote efficient water flow and help prevent disruptive clogs and damage to the piping.

About Quahog Plumbing

Quahog Plumbing has over 15 years of experience serving Somerset and the surrounding areas. They offer straightforward pricing, rapid service, and the latest technology. Call them today for plumbing services in Somerset, MA.

Distribution Links +

A Failing Garbage Disposal: What Are the Signs?

Indicators of a Malfunctioning Garbage Disposal in Need of Repair

One of the most convenient devices in the kitchen is the garbage disposal. It makes quick work of food scraps and is a close ally of the plumbing, grinding up food small enough that it won’t disrupt the plumbing and cause problems. Like any other appliance, however, it cannot last forever and may need repair. This article will discuss what a home’s garbage disposal may be doing that indicates it may need garbage disposal repair or replacement.  

Symptom #1: Unusual Noises

noiseGarbage disposals are not quiet machines. They make a rather noticeable grinding sound even when they are working correctly. However, if they begin making other strange noises, there is likely something wrong that may require repairing or replacing the garbage disposal. Some unusual noises a garbage disposal may make when something is wrong includes the following:

  • Humming: If the disposal simply hums when turned on and the blades are not rotating, something is likely stuck inside. It can also be that the blades have just stopped working. Sometimes pushing the reset button will correct this problem.
  • Whining or Screeching: A loud screeching akin to a metal-on-metal sound may mean that something has been knocked out of place or something like a utensil has been dropped inside. 
  • Other Sounds: Other sounds like gurgling may indicate a clogged garbage disposal, and clanging can indicate that something is caught in the disposal's blades.

Symptom #2: Poor Performance 

This symptom may seem obvious, but people tend to deal with an item struggling for a while instead of repairing or replacing it when they should.  This can mean that the garbage disposal doesn’t work as quickly as it should or has trouble grinding up waste. If the garbage disposal’s reset button has to be used frequently, it also shows an issue with the garbage disposal unit, like the machine is wearing out. Some examples of problems that can cause poor performance are:

  • Corrosion on the blades.
  • Dull blades.
  • A jam in the system.
  • Internal problems with the machine.

Symptom #3: Foul Odors

smellsGarbage disposals are famous for not having the best smells when having issues. They can usually be kept fresh with simple maintenance, like using baking soda and vinegar to keep them clean and ice to dislodge food. However, foul garbage disposal smells sometimes indicate a problem with the appliance itself. 

If the machine is worn out, it will not grind up the food as well as it should, leading to clogs, jams in the device, constant resetting, and a bad-smelling drain. A foul smell from the kitchen drain could also be due to a clog in the piping which can indicate issues like garbage disposals not grinding up food waste enough. If homeowners notice these signs, it shows a need for professional help.

About Quahog Plumbing

Quahog Plumbing has over 15 years of experience serving Somerset, MA, and the surrounding communities. They provide same-day services, straightforward pricing, and the latest technology. Call them today for kitchen plumbing and garbage disposal services in Somerset, MA.

Distribution Links +

How a Whole House Water Filter Can Change a Home's Drinking Water for the Better

Stay Hydrated This Summer With a Water Filter

Everyone knows that water is essential to life. It is abundant on the planet, but because of various impurities, much of it is unsafe for humans to drink. People in the U.S. typically have potable water coming out of their taps, so why should they consider a water filter? This article will cover the benefits of installing a water filtration system.

Filtered Water Tastes Better

waterOne of the most significant benefits of filtered water is that water tastes better when run through a filtration system that removes impurities in water. Filtered water doesn’t just taste better. It also makes drinks and food made with filtered water taste better. This includes things like:

  • Broth
  • Coffee
  • Lemonade
  • Tea

Filtered Water is Safer and Free of Contaminants

Whole home water filtration systems are important to ensure access to clean, healthy water. These systems come in several different types and can be used to remove various contaminants from the water supply. The contaminants in drinking water have regularly made the news in recent years. Lead, iron, rust, VOCs, pesticides, and other chemicals can cause problems for anyone, especially for the most vulnerable. 

A whole house water filtration system is usually composed of several different types of filters so multiple types of impurities can be removed. Some examples of types of water filtration systems are activated charcoal filters, reverse osmosis filters, and ultraviolet (UV) filtration systems. The type of water filter that would work best for a home depends on the type of contaminants in the local water supply, and plumbers can help homeowners determine which is best for their homes. 

Filtered Water Saves Money

saveInstalling a whole-home water filter is an economical and eco-friendly choice for people looking to save money on bottled water. With this system, households can enjoy fresh, clean drinking water straight from their tap without the hefty price tag of buying plastic water bottles. 

Not only will people be able to reduce spending by installing a water filtration system, but they will also positively impact the environment by cutting down on plastic bottle waste. A whole home water filter is an excellent way to save money and be kinder to the planet!

About Quahog Plumbing

Quahog Plumbing has over 15 years of experience serving Somerset, MA, and the surrounding communities. They provide straightforward pricing, same-day service, and the latest technology. Call them today for water filtration system services in Somerset, MA

How to Identify a Hidden Water Leak

Water Leak Detection

Some leaks are easy to find. The evidence is usually obvious when the faucet or the kitchen sink leaks. Unfortunately, leaks don’t always happen above the surface or in plain sight. Sometimes they occur below ground, underneath the home’s foundation slab, behind a wall, or in the yard. These kinds of leaks do have evidence, but it’s not quite so blatant.  Professional leak detection involves specialized professional equipment, but even amateurs can find the warning signs or confirm a leak if they know where to look.

Signs That Point to a Leak

leakUsually, a decrease in water pressure is an early indicator of a leak because water may be leaking out of the hidden or underground piping, causing a drop in pressure. A few of the other signs of leakage or breaks in the plumbing include:

  • Puddles of Water: If there are puddles or wet areas in the yard when there has been no rain, the water may have come up from below due to a leak. 
  • Sound of Running Water:  Sometimes, hidden leaks give themselves away through sound. This is a clear clue if nothing using water is on, but a person can hear water running.
  • High Water Bill:  When a home’s water bill skyrockets without a clear explanation or extra water use, an underground or hidden leak is likely to blame.

Use the Water Meter 

Watching the water meter can help homeowners detect a leak in their pipes. When the shut-off valve is closed, all water should stop flowing through a home's piping system, but if a homeowner notices that the water meter still has activity (i.e., it's spinning or ticking), there is likely a leak somewhere in one of their pipes. 

In this case, homeowners must contact a professional plumber to locate and repair the leak. Regularly monitoring their water meter can help homeowners stay on top of any potential leaks or other water-related issues that could lead to higher water bills and wasted water.

Professional Leak Detection Services

proProfessionals can use various state-of-the-art tools and techniques to locate water leaks. These include acoustic listening devices, infrared cameras, and moisture meters. Acoustic leak detectors detect leaks through the sound of running water beneath the surface. Infrared cameras can detect the warmth of moisture and running water compared to the surrounding environment. Moisture meters measure the moisture level in or on a surface, which can also indicate a leak. 

Professionals use this equipment and techniques to locate where leaks are coming from as accurately as possible. Once a leak is identified, professionals can then assess what repairs are needed to resolve the issue. Professional water leak detection and repair services can save homeowners time and money by preventing further damage and high water bills due to undetected leaks.

About Quahog Plumbing

Quahog Plumbing has over 15 years of experience serving Somerset, MA, and Bristol County. They provide same-day service, flat rate pricing, and the latest technology. Call them today for water leak detection and repair in Somerset, MA.

Distribution Links +

Plumbing Tools of the Trade: What Do Plumbers Use on the Job?

What Tools Are in Plumbing Contractors' Fully Stocked Trucks?

Plumbing problems can be a hassle, but luckily, professional plumbers are equipped with various tools to help them tackle any issue. From hand tools to specialized equipment, plumbing contractors keep a variety of equipment in their fully stocked trucks to help them get the job done efficiently and effectively when they get there. This article will discuss the different types of tools that plumbers use on the job and how they help address plumbing issues. 

Essential Hand Tools

toolsPlumbers rely on a range of hand tools to get the job done. These tools allow them to work with pipes, fittings, and valves to complete repairs, installations, and maintenance tasks. Here are some of the essential hand tools used by plumbers:

  • Wrenches: There are several types of wrenches that plumbers use, including pipe wrenches, adjustable wrenches, basin wrenches, and torque wrenches. These tools loosen or tighten nuts, bolts, and fittings.
  • Pliers: Pliers come in various shapes and sizes and are used for different purposes. Slip-joint pliers are versatile and can be used for gripping, twisting, and cutting. Tongue-and-groove pliers are ideal for turning and holding pipes, and needle-nose pliers help reach tight spaces.
  • Pipe cutters: Pipe cutters come in different styles, including snap cutters, ratcheting cutters, and rotary cutters. These tools allow plumbers to cut through pipes quickly and accurately, ensuring a clean and precise cut.
  • Hacksaws: Plumbers use hacksaws to cut through metal pipes and other materials. They can also cut through screws and bolts that cannot be loosened with a wrench.
  • Teflon tape: Teflon tape, also known as thread seal tape, is used to seal pipe threads and prevent leaks. This tape is wrapped around the threads of a pipe fitting before it is screwed in, providing a watertight seal.

Plumbers' Safety Gear

When it comes to plumbing, safety should always be a top priority. Plumbers work in potentially dangerous environments and come in contact with hazardous materials like sewage. Plumbing contractors must wear safety equipment to prevent accidents and injuries while working and protect themselves while on the job. 

Some safety equipment plumbers may use include gloves to protect their hands from chemicals and sharp objects, masks to avoid inhaling harmful dust and fumes, steel-toed boots to protect heavy objects, and safety goggles to shield their eyes from debris and particles. 

Advanced Plumbing Equipment

toolsPlumbers also use specialized tools and equipment to tackle more complex plumbing problems. Hydro jets, for example, can blast away clogs and buildup in pipes using high-pressure water. A drain snake, also known as an auger, also breaks up and removes clogs and blockages in drains and pipes.

Acoustic listening devices are used to diagnose the location and intensity of leaks in the plumbing system. Video inspection can be used to visually inspect the inside of pipelines to look for blockages or other damage. Pressure testing also allows plumbers to check for leaks and measure water pressure. These specialized tools allow plumbers to efficiently and effectively address even the most challenging plumbing issues.

About Quahog Plumbing

Quahog Plumbing has over 15 years of experience serving Somerset, MA, and the surrounding areas. They provide same-day services, flat rate pricing, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Call them today for plumbing services in Somerset, MA.

Distribution Links +