Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Plumber’s tips on drainage problems

Trouble down the drain

drained

How should a homeowner deal with a drainage problem? (Photo Credits)

Drainage problems at home can be very stressful. Even if the drain question is outside the home, the mere fact that it creates puddles, mud and wet spots in the yard or the garden, can be considered enough of a hassle. Plumbing Association of San Diego              

The DIY Network explained about drains and traps, saying that it is usually disregarded by homeowners until something goes wrong with it.

"Most people don't realize how a home drainage system works; they assume that when they release water from the sink or flush a toilet, the water just goes away. Although this is partially true, a little more is involved in the process of removing waste water from the home. Each fixture has its own drain line; each of the drain lines ties into a larger main line, which takes the water out of the house."

Read the rest of their explanation here.

Common Reasons for Drainage Problems

Home and Garden Television says one of the usual reasons why drains get blocked is the slope in the yard or the lawn area. "The majority of drainage problems are usually caused by an inadequate pitch or slope in your yard which prevents water runoff from being diverted away from the house. And the issue is often complicated by downspouts on the residence that do not pipe away the rain gutter water from the property. "

(Related Post: What to do when a pipe bursts )

Check out the rest of the other reasons here.

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Home improvement website The Family Handyman meantime shared alternative solutions to wet spots created by drainage problems. All the suggestions of course are doable with the help of a Licensed Plumbing Contractor. A/C And HVAC   

One of the suggestions that they have is installing a French Drain.

"A French drain is a versatile system for dealing with all kinds of drainage problems. It disperses water over a large area through a buried perforated pipe. The pipe must be surrounded by material that allows water to drain through. Conventionally this was gravel, but NDS sells a system called EZflow that includes the pipe and surrounding polystyrene aggregate in one convenient and lightweight package. A French drain system can be used alone or combined with a dry well."

(Related Post: Plumber's advice on dealing with dirty water )

Check out the rest of the suggestions here.

When faced with drainage problems, it is important to commission the services of a licensed plumbing contractor who can efficiently help out with the problem.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117

(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors Plumbing Repair San Diego CA

Plumbing and HVAC Red Flags in a Home for Sale

The post Plumber's tips on drainage problems appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Plumbing and HVAC Red Flags in a Home for Sale

What to watch out for when buying a house

The Painted Ladies, San Francisco

What are the signs that there are plumbing and HVAC issues in a property for sale? (Photo Credits)

When buying a home it is important to be vigilant about the fixtures and features of the property one is buying to avoid possible accidents and additional expenses. Bringing in a licensed plumber to help in inspecting the plumbing fixtures of a home is definitely a must, since ordinary homeowners do not have a trained eye to spot potential plumbing issues. Plumbing Association of San Diego 

Third-Party Service Ratings Website Angie's List came up with an article aiming to guide buyers into what to check prior to buying a new home. In their write-up they rounded up the top three most common plumbing problems present in a home for sale, and why buyers should be wary.

( Related Post: What to do when the HVAC fails to cool a room )

"One problem homeowners often neglect to have fixed is a leak at the base of a toilet. The leak often appears small or insignificant, but over time the water will begin to rot the subfloor and even get between the subfloor and the finished floor. Someone unaware of the damage this kind of problem can create, may try to seal this themselves, sometimes making it worse. Here are some toilet leak signs to look for: First, look for discoloration and/or warping around the base of the toilet. Second, check if the floor moves or feels soft around the base of the toilet by applying body weight with your foot. Finally, the toilet bowl should not have any movement."

Read about the two other common plumbing problems they mentioned in their article here.

Addressing the Plumbing and HVAC issues

Once the plumbing issues have been detected, the website Faucet Depot encourages property buyers to settle the issues first before sealing the deal. In one of the articles they posted in their website, they mentioned that the plumbing concerns sought be brought to the table, so that the seller can do something about it. A/C And HVAC 

"While many homes come with a home warranty that will cover the various systems within the home for a specific period of time, you can still be out of pocket if the plumbing system is in disrepair and your home becomes damaged as a result. In most instances, you will find that repairs that need to be made will be made in order to get the home off the market. If you are a bit handy and have the time to do repair work yourself, you can also use the results from your home plumbing inspection to negotiate a lower price on the home to accommodate for the supplies and labor involved in correcting any problem points."

(Related Post: What to do when water leaks from HVAC )

Read more here.

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The website Home Advisor meanwhile encouraged homeowners to check on HVAC issues as well because not doing so can set them back financially with several thousands of dollars. In their home inspection guide, they mentioned the possible cost of repairing home issues due to non-inspection prior to buying. Included in their list is the HVAC System.

"Heating and air-conditioning, including the water heater, should be checked to make sure not only that it's functioning but that it is if adequate capacity for the house. A new furnace can cost between $1,700 to over $13,000 installed. There is no advantage to leaving an incorrectly sized unit on your house. If it's too small, it will be running constantly. If it's too large, it won't stay on long enough to properly circulate the air, leaving you uncomfortable. If air conditioner or furnace parts are need, many such repairs can cost from $500 to $700. Parts can be hard to find on older units, and once parts like the heat exchanger start to go bad, it's usually time to replace the unit."

The continuation of the write-up can be found here.

Inspecting plumbing systems is important to ensure that all plumbing fixtures are running smoothly and avoid incurring additional repair costs.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117

(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors San Diego Plumber

Plumber's advice on installing shut-off valves

The post Plumbing and HVAC Red Flags in a Home for Sale appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Plumber’s advice on installing shut-off valves

Shut-off valve 101

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How important is a gate valve? (Photo Credits)

Water valves are essential plumbing fixtures installed to ensure that plumbing problems can be somehow controlled around the house. Plumbing Association of San Diego    

The website HomeTime described the shut off valves as one of the most important plumbing fixtures that should be installed and become part of a home's plumbing system. They explained that in the event something needs to be fixed, the other parts of the home would still have water supply, lessening the hassle of the plumbing fix.

"A basic, but most important installation is including shut-off valves on hot and/or cold water lines and plumbing fixtures. Strategically placed shut-offs are nice features to have when working on plumbing fixtures, a washer or hot water heater."

(Related Post: Plumber's guide on water conservation in the kitchen)

Read the rest of their article here.

Requirement in the Plumbing Code

Florida Based Home Inspectors Mac Garry and Madsen explains that shut off valves are required for most of the home plumbing fixtures. A/C And HVAC   

"So, in summary, shut off valves are required for all plumbing fixtures except showers and bathtubs, and they must be at the fixture unless a manifold system is used. Water-using appliances such as a dishwasher, food waste grinder, clothes washer or water heater, are in a separate category called 'plumbing appliances,' which are defined as an 'energized appliance with plumbing connections.' The Universal Plumbing Code (UPC) requires that a shutoff valve be installed on the supply line for each appliance and does not require that the valve be adjacent to the appliance."

(Related Post: Plumber's take on Low Water Flow)

Read the rest of their explanation here.

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The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission meanwhile shared comprehensive information on water and shut off valves. What to do, and how to locate these valves when needed. They also detailed how to open and shut-off the valves.

"Basements – the shut-off valve is typically located near the front foundation wall. The main water may have come through the concrete floor or through the wall. The valve is typically within 3-5 feet of where the main water enters. In some cases, the main water may enter in a different area, like a mechanical room, up through the floor, near the water heater or furnace."

Read the whole comprehensive guide here.

Knowing how to deal with water valve shut offs is important in ensuring less hassle for the whole household during plumbing emergencies.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117
(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors Plumbing Repair San Diego

Warning signs of an HVAC Problem

 

The post Plumber's advice on installing shut-off valves appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Warning signs of an HVAC Problem

Clues to determine HVAC Issues

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There are telltale signs that could indicate possible HVAC Issues. (Photo Credits)

A home's HVAC unit can exhibit clues that there may be operational issues in the offing. It is then very important to regularly have HVAC units inspected and maintained to avoid issues.

Third Party Service Ratings Website Angie's List for instance shared HVAC sounds that may indicate problems in the HVAC Unit. Loud rattling is one of the sounds they mentioned in their article. Plumbing Association of San Diego 

"Loud rattling, thumping, clanking or banging noises — These sounds usually indicate a problem with the blower assembly or motor. Rattling usually means that a component in the system is coming loose. The problem should be repaired before the part breaks or disconnects completely. If you hear louder banging sounds when the blower is running, shut the system off. At this point, something has broken or disconnected. Occasionally, the motor mounts on the assembly can become loose. The blower may also be out of alignment. Unusual rattling sounds can come from motor bearings. The motor assembly should be inspected by a qualified technician."

( Related Post: Asthma and the HVAC System )

Read more here.

Time to Replace?

Energy Star shared in its official homepage signs that it may be time to replace a home's HVAC system. A/C And HVAC     

"Your heat pump or air conditioner is more than 10 years old. Consider replacing it with a unit that has earned the ENERGY STAR label. Installed correctly, these high-efficiency units can save up to 20 percent on heating and cooling costs. Your furnace or boiler is more than 15 years old. Consider replacing with an ENERGY STAR qualified furnace, which is 15% more efficient than a conventional furnace. If you have a boiler, consider replacing with an ENERGY STAR qualified boiler that is 5% more efficient than a new, standard model."

Read the rest of the signs here.

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Networx.com also came up with an article that enumerated signs homeowners should be aware of, in relation to repair and replacement of their HVAC Units. Faltering heat exchanger is one of the signs that they mentioned.

(Related Post: HVAC Expert's Advice on Reducing Heating Bills in the Bedroom)

"The heart of any gas-fired furnace is the heat exchanger. It transfers the heat from the gas burners to the air that circulates through the system. If a heat exchanger develops cracks or holes, replacement of the appliance is imminent. Heat exchangers can crack if they get too hot and expand beyond their design limits. This can actually be caused, over time, by dirty air filters, but it's most often just a condition of old age. Heat exchangers are vulnerable to rust if there's excessive moisture in the area … or if the furnace is tied to a central AC whose interior exchanger has a problem with its condensate pan or drain, resulting in water dripping onto the furnace exchanger."

Read the rest of the warning signs here.

HVAC Maintenance and regular inspection is indeed very important to prolong the life of a Unit.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117

(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors Plumbing Heating and Air

Plumber's advice on dealing with outdoor broken pipes

The post Warning signs of an HVAC Problem appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Plumber’s advice on dealing with outdoor broken pipes

Bursting Pipes outside the Home

Burst Water Pipe

When outdoor pipes burst. (Photo Credits)

Outdoor pipes burst, and it can wreak havoc outside any person's home. In worst cases it can even cause flooding. So what should a homeowner do, when an outdoor pipe bursts outside his home?

Plumbers advise that if in case such thing occurs outside your home, and the pipe belongs to your plumbing fixture it would be best to get in touch with a licensed plumber. If however it is a community pipe, then reporting it to the water company supplier would be the best recourse.

Tree Hugger shared information on how homeowner's can deal with a burst pipe, first of which is to shut off the main valve. In the same article, it also shared long term prevention tips. Plumbing Association of San Diego            

"This doesn't happen in a properly insulated and sealed house; I suspect that no Passive House designs ever got a frozen pipe. (1) Never put pipes in an outside wall, and avoid putting bathroom vanities on outside walls; I did this in my Mom's cottage and this is where I learned how to solder and fix pipes; (2)    If a pipe is particularly susceptible to freezing, put electric heat tape and insulation on it. (3) Modern plastic plumbing is less likely to burst when it freezes; use instead of copper."

(Related Post: Plumber's guide on foul-smelling tap water)

Read the whole article here.

Dealing with broken outdoor pipes

You Repair also shared some advice to its readers who may be dealing with broken pipe problems outside their home. A/C And HVAC

"Turn off the water at your main valve found near your water meter. If you don't know where your water meter is then go find it before something like this happens. At the same time look around and try to find all of your shutoff valves. Mark them on a diagram on a piece of paper and place that paper near your water meter or someplace that you can easily get to in case there is a problem."

(Related Post: Plumber's guide on avoiding kitchen clogs)

Check out the rest of the write-up here.

Related Plumbing and HVAC Repair and Installation Services:

The Insurance Institute for Business and Safety meantime published a manuscript explaining how pipes burst, why it happens, and what can be done when it happens. The guide also included how to prevent pipes from bursting.

"Surprisingly, ice forming in a pipe does not typically cause a break where the ice blockage occurs. It's not the radial expansion of ice against the wall of the pipe that causes the break. Rather, following a complete ice blockage in a pipe, continued freezing and expansion inside the pipe causes water pressure to increase downstream — between the ice blockage and a closed faucet at the end. It's this increase in water pressure that leads to pipe failure."

Read the continuation here.

Pipe bursts can be stressful. It is important to know how to deal with it in case it happens.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117

(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors Plumber Contractor San Diego

What to do when a pipe bursts

The post Plumber's advice on dealing with outdoor broken pipes appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

What to do when a pipe bursts

Water pipe trouble

burst pipes, now worries

How to deal with broken pipes. (Photo Credits)

A bursting water pipe is not uncommon as it can happen to any household. Damage however to the plumbing fixtures as well as to the home in general can be minimized when the homeowner knows what to do in case such thing occurs in his home. Plumbing Association of San Diego   

The Washington Post came up with an article detailing how homeowners should deal with the problem. It also assured them that such pipe burst incidents are not uncommon especially during the winter season when pipes have the tendency to freeze.

"Shut off your water and, if necessary, electricity. Go to the home's main water valve and shut it off immediately. (And don't wait for a burst pipe to find out where the main water valve is located.) Electricity should also be cut off to the section of the home where the water damage has occurred, Thompson said. If you live in an apartment complex and don't have control over the building's water supply, he added, be sure to contact your building manager or landlord."

(Related Post: Plumber's Advice on Water Efficiency in the Bathroom )

More can be found here.

Immediate action

The website Family Handyman also came up with a list of things to do upon discovering a broken pipe. Like The Washington Post, its immediate advice is to turn off the main water supply. A/C And HVAC

"Opening a faucet after you shut off the water main will relieve any remaining pressure in the pipes. Call a Plumber — Unless you feel comfortable trying to repair a broken pipe on your own, you're probably going to need a plumber at some point. You can, however, do several things before calling the plumber that will help reduce the impact of a broken pipe."

(Related Post: Plumber's take on Low Water Flow )

The continuation of this article can be found here.

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Home Garden Television meantime came up with a guide for those who may want to try self-troubleshooting their own burst pipe.

"Determine a location for the valve on a water line in or near a heated area.Shut off the main valve where water comes into your home. Open the lowest fixture in your house to drain any water out. Use a pipe cutter to remove the desired section of pipe. Rotate the pipe cutter around the pipe, gradually tightening it until it cuts through. Clean any burrs off the end of the cut pipe with steel wool. Place a bucket under the cut area to catch any water remaining in the line."

The rest of the steps can be found here.

Calling a licensed plumber remains to be the best way to deal with a broken pipe. As soon as the main valve has been shut off, it will be best to get in touch with a plumbing contractor.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117

(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors San Diego Plumber

Top Household HVAC Problems

 

The post What to do when a pipe bursts appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Top Household HVAC Problems

Dealing with common HVAC concerns

HVAC

Top concerns on Household HVAC use. (Photo Credits)

HVAC Systems are not completely faultless systems because from time to time it may experience operational issues or concerns. The occurrence of these issues though depend on the routine maintenance schedule its owners undertake for their household HVAC.

The US Department of Energy summed up in its website, the most common HVAC concerns reported by homeowners. Leaking refrigerant is among the top issues they mentioned in their article. A/C And HVAC  

"If your air conditioner is low on refrigerant, either it was undercharged at installation or it leaks. If it leaks, simply adding refrigerant is not a solution. A trained technician should fix any leak, test the repair, and then charge the system with the correct amount of refrigerant. Remember that the performance and efficiency of your air conditioner is greatest when the refrigerant charge exactly matches the manufacturer's specification, and is neither undercharged nor overcharged. Refrigerant leaks can also be harmful to the environment."

(Related Post: What to do with a humming HVAC)

Read about the other top concerns mentioned by the Department of Energy here.

Surge in electricity bills

Houselogic.com also shared that an unexplained surge in power bills usually send homeowners calling their HVAC technicians. Plumbing Association of San Diego     

"A spike in operating costs typically signals inefficient operation. After a dirty filter (warning sign #2), the most likely culprit is a choked condensing coil. Located within the outdoor unit, the coil has countless cooling fins — much like a car radiator — that can accumulate dust and debris."

(You may also want to read: Winterizing the HVAC System)

More can be found here.

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Third Party Service Ratings Website Angie's List meanwhile cautioned its readers about the common noises that can be heard from an HVAC system, and what these noises mean. Unusual sounds coming from an HVAC unit usually clue in homeowners that the unit may need to be inspected by a professional.

"Loud rattling, thumping, clanking or banging noises. These sounds usually indicate a problem with the blower assembly or motor. Rattling usually means that a component in the system is coming loose. The problem should be repaired before the part breaks or disconnects completely. If you hear louder banging sounds when the blower is running, shut the system off. At this point, something has broken or disconnected."

The continuation of this post can be viewed here.

Being aware of the common HVAC concerns should at least prompt homeowners to schedule regular maintenance inspections of their respective units.

Diamond Ace Contractors

5052 Genesee Ave, San Diego, CA 92117

(888) 231-1086

Diamond Ace Contractors Air Conditioning Repair Service

Plumber's guide on foul-smelling tap water

 

The post Top Household HVAC Problems appeared first on Blue Diamond Plumbing.