Category: Blog

Category: Blog

Dishwasher Won’t Drain? 8 Steps to Fix It
September 2, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

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One of the most common problems reported to plumbers by homeowners is when a dishwasher won’t drain. While it can be scary to open the dishwasher door and see standing water at the bottom, it isn’t always a plumbing emergency. In fact, you may be able to correct the problem yourself without professional help. 

What to Do When Your Dishwasher Won’t Drain 

If draining your dishwasher is an issue, here are eight simple techniques to try at home.

1.  Run the Disposal  

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A full garbage disposal or an air gap in a connecting hose can prevent water from properly draining out of the dishwasher. Simply running the disposal for about 30 seconds may fix the issue.  

2. Check for Blockages  

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Check the bottom of the dishwasher to make sure that an item or pieces of food haven’t fallen from the rack to block the water flow 

3. Load the Dishwasher Correctly 

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Make sure you’re loading the dishwasher correctly. Read the manufacturers’ instructions or owner’s manual for tips and directions on how to load dishes for best results. 

4. Clean or Change the Filter 

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You may have a clogged dishwasher filter that’s preventing water from draining. Many homeowners don’t realize that dishwasher filters need to be cleaned regularly. Check your owner’s manual to see where the filter is located on your dishwasher, and for instructions on how and when to clean it. For many dishwashers, the filter can be found on the inside bottom of the appliance. 

5. Inspect the Drain Hose 

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Check the drain hose connecting to the sink and garbage disposal. Straighten any kinks that you may see, which could be causing the problem. Blow through the hose or poke a wire hanger through to check for clogs. Make sure the hose seal is tight, too. 

6. Double-check the Drain Valve 

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Inspect the drain valve found on the valve bracket, often located at the bottom of the machine. Push on the valve to make sure it moves freely and isn’t stuck. 

7. Try Vinegar and Baking Soda 

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Mix together about one cup each of baking soda and vinegar and pour the mixture into the standing water at the bottom of the dishwasher. Leave for about 20 minutes. If the water is draining or starting to drain at that time, rinse with hot water and then run the dishwasher’s rinse cycle. That may be enough to help loosen any clogs or debris that are preventing the dishwasher from draining properly.  

8. Listen to Your Machine While It’s Running 

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Listen to your dishwasher while it’s running a cycle. If it doesn’t make the usual operating sounds, particularly if it’s making a humming or clicking noise, the drain pump and motor may need replacing. If this occurs, it may be time to call a professional for help.  

How to Properly Drain a Dishwasher 

If you need to clear standing water at the bottom of a dishwasher, here’s how to drain it: 

  • Line the floor under the dishwasher with towels or newspaper.  
  • With a measuring cup or a large ladle, scoop the water from the bottom into a bowl or the sink.  
  • When the water becomes too shallow to scoop, soak up the remaining moisture with a cloth or paper towels. 

Always make sure that you’re using the right type of dish detergent per the manufacturer’s directions, to avoid clogging the drain. Taking some preventative steps to keep your dishwasher running smoothly can also help you avoid drainage issues in the future. 

Looking for an affordable home warranty plan? Here’s where to start: 

Reasons You Should Find a 24 hour Plumber Ahead of Time
August 24, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

Accidents occur and when something happens to your plumbing unexpectedly, you’ll want it repaired immediately. Ideally, hiring a plumber is a decision you should weigh carefully. However, most people do this in haste in most cases because they only hire a plumber when an emergency arises. Even then, you shouldn’t hire a plumber simply because the person’s name is the first in the directory.

Remember, your plumbing system is an essential part of your home and you need to know that a qualified person will handle it. When hiring an emergency plumber, you must have sufficient time to research the company otherwise; you’ll end up with more problems instead of the solution you’d expected.

Fortunately, you can count on Plumber Parkland to address your plumbing needs. Here’s why you need to conduct due diligence first.

To establish whether the plumber is Licensed

 

Unfortunately, most homeowners don’t ask this question only to face the repercussions later. Taking your time to research a plumber will help you establish whether the plumber has extensive training. Hiring a licensed plumber will ensure you don’t spend unnecessary money later.

Bear in mind that licensed plumbers are those who are registered with a governing body at the local or state level. A license proves that the person you’re dealing with can actually do what the plumber says he can do.

It’s important to note that numerous plumbers don’t operate with a license and numerous homeowners presume that all plumbers should have one. Therefore, it’s worth asking this question during your research. The problem with working with an excellent plumber who’s unlicensed is that his work might not pass inspection and there’s little recourse since you hired him in the first place

Thankfully, you can count on our licensed plumber Parkland Fl who follows state regulations on how the work is conducted and follows local building and safety codes.

Establish the Level of Experience and Services Offered

One of the challenges with emergency service is that a plumber should think fast and develop rapid solutions to the problem. No institution can teach this repair work properly. Rather, it takes hands-on experience in various situations to train a plumber to tackle the demands of emergency circumstances.

You’re better off looking for contractors and plumbers with an extensive history like 24-hour plumbers in Parkland who can back up their skills.

The type of services offered is associated with experience because it implies that the professional can draw from numerous plumbing jobs to establish the best service to handle your emergency. For instance, our plumbers offer numerous services, so we have a wide range of tools to fit whatever situation.

Pricing

It’s important you establish the pricing of your prospective plumber. Beware that numerous plumbers build contract clauses that state that homeowners will be responsible for any reasonable expenses to accomplish the task.

When obtaining an estimate, ensure you establish whether the total being quoted is a flat rate that won’t change due to labor expenses or whether the plumber is charging an hourly rate plus the material cost. The drawback with the second choice is that while the cost of materials is fixed if the job takes longer, the price will continue increasing while you cover labor costs.

The prospective plumber should provide a reasonable and precise estimate of the work that needs completion. It should also be in wiring before any work takes place. Ensure you understand what you’re obtaining before you sign an agreement.

Payment Policy

Conducting research will allow you to establish whether the payment policy is in line with your expectations. You should always inquire when the plumber expects payment and the proportion of the total amount he wants upfront.

If the prospective plumber demands 100% of the cost before the task begins, walk away. Some plumbers use a milestone system where you’re expected to pay a certain proportion once a particular task is complete.

After a specific number of weeks, you’ll pay a certain segment of the total amount. Milestones are frequently better because you only issue payment upon completing certain tasks. While time payments can work, if the plumber is slow, you might end up paying too much for too little.

While …

How to Fix Water Hammer in Pipes
August 13, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

Plumbing Repair

Water hammer is a plumbing condition that is all too familiar. It’s an annoying sound like a bang that verges on startling. And while you may want to wish it away as simply one of those harmless everyday sounds, it can eventually damage your plumbing system. Learning the basics of water hammer and fixing it can save you thousands of dollars in repairs down the road.

How You Know If You Have Water Hammer

Water hammer, or hydraulic shock, is both a sound and a sensation. You’ll be shutting off a faucet when a quite audible bang vibrates up the pipes. Because sound is vibration, it’s often strong enough so that you can feel it under your hand as you hold the faucet or the handle. You may even see the faucet slightly jump.

The shock of water hammer can even cause dishes and glasses in cabinets to vibrate. You may also hear the sound resonate within the house’s inner structure.

What Causes Water Hammer

Water hammer happens because water is shut off quickly. While sink, tub, and shower faucets can cause water hammer, more often clothes washers and dishwashers cause water hammer because they can shut off water faster than by hand. These appliances use solenoid valves, which can close off in as fast as 30 milliseconds.

The alarming sound is caused by the sudden stoppage of water flow. This causes the water supply pipes to bang against studs, joists, beams, or even against other water supply or drain pipes.

Tip

Although you don’t hear it as loudly, water hammer can also be an issue with plastic water supply pipes, such as CPCV and PEX. And the potential danger for pipe damage still exists. If you have open areas where plastic plumbing pipes are exposed, watch the pipes for signs of movement and flexing when someone abruptly turns off faucets. Water hammer in plastic pipes also calls for remedy.

Methods for Fixing Water Hammer

Air Chambers

If you’ve ever seen mysterious lengths of 12-inch capped pipe extending from the supply pipes, these are air chambers meant to quieten water hammer. Filled with air, each pipe acts as a shock absorber for the water that comes to a sudden halt. Air compresses; water does not. This means that the air in the chamber acts as a cushion for the water.

This simple solution requires advanced plumbing skills for installation. Plus, air chambers can fill with water over time, so the pipes may occasionally need to be drained.

Tip

Water supply pipes always must be properly secured. So, it’s always a great idea to replace broken or loose straps as a part of a proper house maintenance schedule. When possible, replace with cushioned pipe clamps made of steel and soft EPDM rubber.

Water Hammer Arrestors

A water hammer arrestor improves on the idea of the air chamber by adding a chamber filled with gas or air that’s sealed with a piston or a diaphragm. The diaphragm separates the water and the gas or air.

What Is a Diaphragm?

In plumbing, a diaphragm is a flexible disc that responds to pressure to form a seal, stopping water flow. Diaphragms are often made of various kinds of rubber, along with other materials.

water hammer arrestor is often spliced into the point where the water supply tube/hose meets up with a shutoff valve. With this method, no pipes need to be cut or sweated back together. Push-fit water arrestors are also available.

Tip

Look for water arrestors that are combined with a valve. Sometimes, space may be an issue, so be sure to purchase a water arrestor that fits the space.

Water-Pressure Regulators

Water hammer can also occur when the overall pressure of the main water pipe entering the building is too high. Normal water pressure runs between 40 and 60 psi (pounds per square inch), and above this, the high pressure could be the source of water hammer. Very high pressure above 100 psi can also damage appliances.

In this case, installing a water-pressure regulator can solve water hammer issues. Where possible, it’s better to install the water-pressure regulator at the location where the main water supply enters the home

3 COMMON REASONS YOUR PIPES ARE LEAKING
August 9, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

3 COMMON REASONS YOUR PIPES ARE LEAKING

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If you own a home, you know that plumbing leaks happen, but what you may not understand is why they happen. There are a good handful of reasons why they occur, and understanding them may help you prevent them in the future. While you will still need to call a plumber when you notice a leak in your Jacksonville, FL home, your aim should be to prevent future leaks.

Plumbing leaks are an odd thing because sometimes they are hidden behind walls, under sinks, and in the basement. To the untrained eye and everyone but the plumbing service, it can seem like leaks come out of thin air. One day you may be sitting in a dry home and the next day you are sitting in one with a notable leak. This is what makes them so annoying to deal with.

Depending on where the leak may be coming from, it can even seem like its sole purpose is to annoy you. No one likes a dripping faucet or a leak that appears to stop and then come back like you are playing some obnoxious version of tag with your plumbing system. This is why you should always call a plumbing service if you suspect a leak because it will not fix itself on its own.

While you may not want to hear it, almost all pipes will leak eventually because at the end of the day they are just metals that corrode and deteriorate like anything else. While piping is usually made of every strong piping that is much less likely to break, it still has a lifespan attached to it. One way you can lengthen that lifespan is by keeping good plumbing habits and having a plumbing service out for an annual inspection. That said, there are a few things that can impact how long it takes for that leak to pop up. Here are just a few.

Clogs

Any plumbing service in Jacksonville, FL will tell you that clogs are one of the number one reasons why pipes leak before their lifespan is up. Both partial and full clogs prevent water from flowing the way it is supposed to lead to an increased amount of water pressure inside of the pipes. Pipes are not designed to deal with sustained extra pressure over time, and eventually, that pressure takes its toll on the pipe walls and in areas where seals are used to help create one long piping system.

Eventually, that pressure is too much for a pipe or seal to handle and a small leak pops out to relieve some of the pressure. The leak is not always noticeable, as even a small leak can relieve enough pressure that the pipe is then able to take the sustained pressure. This is one reason it is very important to call a plumbing service when you have a clog in your home because while you may only be concerned about breaking the clog up, the plumber will know to look for any other damage that clog may have caused in your plumbing system.

It is also important to remember that a small leak can cause a large amount of damage over time. While you may not immediately notice that a pipe is leaking, when your paint starts to bubble or mold starts to grow you will wish you paid more attention to the signs of a leaking pipe. If you have any indication that there may be a small leak hiding in your home, it is important to call a plumbing service.

Broken Seals

Almost every major home appliance has a seal at the point that water from your home plumbing system connects to them. If you have a washing machine, a refrigerator with an ice maker or water fixture, or a water heater in your basement then you have an appliance that may eventually need some attention from a plumber. The seals that are placed on the connection points are not meant to last forever, because that is virtually an impossible task.

If you have not looked at the joint in years, now is a good time to go inspect …

How to Install an AAV (Air Admittance Valve) for a Sink
July 22, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

Sink with separate hot and cold faucets

A vent is a necessary part of the drain system for any plumbing fixture. Its purpose is to equalize pressure in the pipes and prevent a vacuum from forming as the fixture drains. Without venting, the negative pressure caused by the flow of draining water can potentially suck water out of the drain trap and allow sewer gases to enter the home. The vents allow air into the drain pipes to help keep the drain flowing properly. In some instances, though, properly venting a drain can be difficult to do.

How a Traditional Vent Line Works

In most houses, the drain line for each sink extends horizontally back into a wall, where it fits into a sanitary tee. One outlet on the tee extends downward into a vertical drain line, and the other extends upward into a vent system that is open to outside air. This exposure to fresh air releases sewer gases and allows fresh air into the system to help water drain quickly.

Sometimes, though, it is difficult to connect fixture drains to an external vent pipe. In mobile homes, for example, there may be no external vents at all. And in homes with island sinks with no cabinetry above the island, it can be difficult to find a route for linking the sink drain to an external vent. In these instances, an alternative method of equalizing air pressure is required. This is where the AAV comes in.

How an Air Admittance Valve (AAV) Works

How to Install an Air Admittance Valve to Keep Your Sink Draining Properly  | Better Homes & Gardens

An air admittance valve (AAV), sometimes called an auto vent, is a device attached to the fixture drain line. It has a mechanism that opens up to admit room air into the drain under the force of the negative pressure caused by water flowing through the drain. With this negative pressure dissipated, the water in the drain trap cannot be siphoned off. Once the water stops flowing and the negative pressure ends, the AAV device automatically closes to prevent sewer gases from entering the room.

Are AAVs Allowed by Code?

Rules on the use of AAVs vary widely from state to state. While the trend seems to be toward gradual acceptance of these devices, some state building codes still do not allow air admittance valves as a replacement for traditional vents. Other states limit the number of AAVs that a single home can use. Always check with your local building inspections office for advice on what venting strategies are allowed.

Signs That You May Need an AAV

Where allowed by code, AAVs can be used with any type of sink or fixture. Some sinks will give hints that an AAV is necessary. A sink that gurgles loudly, for example, or one that drains very slowly even though there are no clog issues, might be doing so because of negative air pressure in the lines. Adding an AAV often resolves these issues. Especially where there is no direct connection to the vent system, as is often the case in sink island situations, installing an AAV may improve the function of the drain. If the drain already has an AAV, such symptoms might indicate that the valve needs to be replaced.

Installing an Air Admittance Valve

How to Install an Air Admittance Valve to Keep Your Sink Draining Properly  | Better Homes & Gardens

Installing an AAV to vent a sink is fairly easy, whether you are replacing an old existing vent or putting one in for the first time. It basically involves tapping into the existing drain trap configuration to install an AAV via a new sanitary tee fitting and a short upward extension pipe. While it is possible to install an AAV hidden inside walls during remodeling work, it is more common to install them right under the sink cabinet as an adaptation of the pipe joining the drain trap to the branch drain.

With each sink and each drain configuration slightly different, you should be ready to adapt while installing an AAV. As every home plumber knows, it’s not uncommon for additional adapter fittings and other parts to be necessary to fit unique circumstances.

What You’ll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Channel-lock pliers
  • Bucket
  • Tape measure
  • PVC pipe cutter or hacksaw

Materials

  • Air admittance valve
  • Sanitary tee fitting
  • PVC pipe
  • PVC primer
  • PVC solvent glue
  • Pipe-seal tape
  • Additional PVC fittings
The Increasing Importance of the Plumbing Profession
July 9, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

logoThe World Health Organization has declared plumbers the most important front-line health workers around the globe. Most people know from seeing the basins, taps and toilets that of what they are seeing, much of the work is behind the scenes. This “hidden” work meets the essential requirements of our daily lives especially when living in close communities.

Among the objectives upon which the World Plumbing Council was founded is promoting awareness of the plumbing industry’s role in protecting the environment by providing safe, fresh water and sanitation through proper management, care, reuse and conservation of natural resources. The industry also plays a major role in the installation of technologies that address concerns about the depletion of fossil fuels and work toward reducing harmful emissions.

Freshwater is infinite supply on Earth and as the key to life is, without question, our planet’s most precious natural resource. The plumbing industry recognizes the tenuous balance mankind must maintain to guarantee its very existence and embraces efforts to ensure we are preserving every drop possible.

Many of these efforts are well-publicized and countless others go largely unnoticed. Part of the reason for establishing 11 March as World Plumbing Day is to educate the general public about the work the plumbing industry performs every day to conserve the world’s increasingly overstretched sources of drinking water and promote energy efficiency and the increased use of renewable sources of energy.

The professional plumbing industry is poised to make significant contributions to all aspects of water conservation and water reuse. This skill set already exists and can be enhanced through additional training of the young professionals. But a different paradigm must be enacted to include these valuable resources in the solution.

Alter historical approaches to water expansion with new strategy comprised of an integration of conservation and reuse.

If we do not alter our historical approaches to water supply expansion, we will only be able to provide a fraction of the world’s water demand in the next few decades. By 2050, the world population is estimated to increase by 3 billion people, with 100 percent of this growth expected to be concentrated in urban areas. Within 20 years, the projected demand for water will increase between 40 and 50 percent. Although it was universally agreed that the water challenges ahead of us are daunting, the good news is it is not insurmountable.

Conservation and reuse must be done thru a combination of centralized and decentralized approaches.

The strategy must integrate water/wastewater conveyance, water and wastewater treatment, river and surface water cleanup, wastewater and gray water reuse, rainwater harvesting, desalination, and climate change adaptation. With 100 percent of the world population growth occurring in urban areas in the next 30 years, most of the focus was on needed changes to urban water management. The key component of this strategy is to minimize consumption while maximizing recovery through a move toward a hybrid approach of conservation and a combination of centralized and decentralized water reclamation and reuse. The concept applies to all urban areas whether they are rapidly developing cities in Asia or fully developed urban systems in North America.

Plumbing industry largely responsible for the advancing de-centralized conservation and water reuse.

Residential Plumbing Plantation FL | Della Rossa Plumbing

Governing bodies around the world need to make the tough decisions, recognize change is needed, adjust water rates to match real overall costs, implement policies, and inspire the populace to work cooperatively toward solutions. There is enough water to go around and the water technology needed to accomplish our demand goals is already available, proven and widely accessible. The biggest obstacle we have in front of us is the lack of recognition that change is needed. A sustainable water supply is only achievable if all stakeholders in the water loop, including the plumbing industry, are working together.

The plumbing industry will play an essential role in helping stakeholders understand the importance of implementing a key component of the integrated strategy. There will be a need to accelerate the development and installation of high efficiency plumbing systems and components, and standardize the use of decentralized (onsite) alternate water sources, such as rainwater and gray water, in order to offset the need to expand water generation and …

Signs Your Toilet Needs Repaired
June 25, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

Having to repair a toilet is a situation that every homeowner will face at one time or another. As one of the most necessary parts of a home’s plumbing, a broken toilet will need to be resolved quickly. It is always helpful to know the signs that a toilet may be in need of repair so that a small problem does not turn into a bigger and more expensive one down the road. Here are the most important signs to look out for.

Strange Noises After Flushing

Clogs and blocks in any part of the plumbing including drains and vents can cause new sounds. Gurgling, bubbling or sucking sounds usually indicate a problem. If you notice any of these sounds suddenly occurring, it usually means a call to your plumber is in your future.

Frequent Clogs

There is nothing more frustrating than a toilet that is constantly clogging, overflowing, or running slowly. Improper use of the toilet including flushing items such as paper towels, baby wipes, feminine products, or anything except for septic friendly toilet paper and waste, can cause clogging. However, if you are using the appliance correctly and still experiencing frequent clogs, it may be time for service.

Constantly Running Toilet

Occasionally the flapper on the inside of the toilet will become jammed, causing the toilet to continually run until the toilet is fixed. Many times this is a quick one time fix that can be done without help, but if the toilet has a habit of running for long periods of time after flushing, it may need a more extensive repair. A constantly running toilet can waste water and cause utility bills to increase, so it is important to fix the problem.

Noticeable Damage

Homeowners should be in the habit of regularly inspecting their toilets for any noticeable damage on and around the toilet. If there is any rust or corrosion, or if there are any cracks, a repair will be needed. Cracks in the bowl of the toilet need attention as these can cause leakage and risk damage to flooring and other parts of the home.

Pools of Water

Any pools of water around the toilet should be immediately investigated. Pooling water can cause structural damage as well as become a health hazard to your family. Leaking water can be a drain on your budget, and lead to mold and foul odors, so you should call your plumber at the first sign of a leak.

Multiple Flushes Needed

If your toilet needs more than one flush to eliminate the contents, or if you need to hold the handle down until the flush is complete, this may be a sign of an imminent toilet repair. The problem may be traced back to one of many different root causes so the plumber will need to diagnose the source of the issue before making the repair. Often the handle may just need to be fixed, but it may be a more complex problem such as overall low water pressure.

Investing in a New Toilet

In many cases, a quick repair can get your toilet back to perfect working condition. However, there may be a time when a toilet replacement may make more sense both financially and practically. Investing in a new toilet can be a wise decision that can improve your quality of life and help you save money on water bills.

Many new toilets are designed with water conservation in mind. Homeowners with toilets older than the 1990s should consider replacing their toilets with appliances that use less water. Many people also choose to replace toilets to increase the aesthetic appeal of their bathroom. There are many sleek and attractive models that can add to the beauty of the room.

Toilets will also need to be replaced when the damage or cost of repair is too high. Leaks or rust that has spread too far will likely necessitate a replacement. After inspecting your toilet, the technician will be able to provide helpful advice to enable you to decide whether to go ahead with a repair or to purchase a new toilet.

Your toilet is an important part of home comfort. One of the best ways to …

How to Remove Rust Stains From Toilets, Tubs, and Sinks
June 17, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves

rust in the sink

Rust stains on porcelain or enameled cast-iron sink, toilet, bathtub, or shower pan are common occurrences. They can be caused when a metal object such as shaving cream can is left to sit wet on the surface, but can also be caused by galvanized steel plumbing pipes bleeding rust onto the surfaces or because iron-rich hard water dries onto surfaces.

The good news is that it’s possible to remove bathroom rust stains without a significant amount of time and effort. For the best results, ditch the bleach-based bathroom cleansers—these may actually worsen stubborn stains—and give one of these tried-and-true methods a go.

Bar Keepers Friend

Bar Keepers Friend, in both powder and liquid forms, is an extraordinarily effective method for removing rust stains from bathroom fixtures. Bar Keepers Friend will safely remove rust stains and mineral deposits from all toilet bowls and metallic faucet finishes. And, according to the manufacturer, it may also be used to remove stains from sinks, bathtubs, and shower basins made of stainless steel, porcelain, Corian, fireclay, ceramic, acrylic, copper, glass, enameled cast iron, fiberglass, and solid-surface materials.

According to the product’s material safety data sheet, the ingredients in Bar Keepers Friend include mineral feldspar, sodium dodecylbenzene sulfonate (a common detergent), and oxalic acid. Because it is much less abrasive than cleaners such as Ajax or Comet, Bar Keepers Friend is less likely to scratch surfaces. However, the main active ingredient, oxalic acid, can cause skin or eye irritation, so you should wear gloves and use this product carefully.

Shaw’s Pads

Shaw’s Pads offer a chemical-free, septic tank-friendly approach to rust removal. Equipped with a simple handle and scouring cloth, Shaw’s Pads work on the “elbow grease” principle: simply wet the pad and scrub stains away. Use Shaw’s Pads to remove toilet rings; rust, calcium, and lime buildup; grey, green, and brown water residue; algae and chemical stains on pool tiles; and hard water and well-water residues.

Unlike pumice stone or abrasive cleaners, Shaw’s Pads will not scratch any surface. They do, however, require a bit more effort to remove stubborn stains.

Pumice Stick

Pumice scouring sticks work particularly well for removing rust stains from porcelain. Use pumice sticks to gently scour away mineral deposits, rust, and other stains and scale from sinks, toilets, tubs, and showers. They can be used to remove rust and unwanted paint from metalwork, piping, tile, masonry, and concrete, too. Made from 100 percent natural pumice, a soft volcanic stone, these sticks are safe for dermal contact and use and storage around children and pets.

pumice stick
The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

Zud Scouring Cleanser

Zud cleanser is another product that employs oxalic acid and a potent combination of abrasives made up of finely ground quartz and pumice to zap rust stains on contact. Available in both liquid and powder form, Zud dissolves rust, mineral stains, hard water deposits, and soap scum. And, according to the manufacturer, it may be used to clean copper, brass, bronze, chromium, iron, pewter, and stainless steel.

Simply squirt or sprinkle Zud directly onto rust stains and brush using a toilet cleaning brush or plastic scouring pad. Then, add water to ensure that the Zud solution covers the entire area. Add more Zud where the solution is missing. After the solution has been set for about 60 to 90 minutes, clean the area with the brush and rinse away the solution.

Zud is a slightly more abrasive cleaner than Bar Keepers Friend but is considerably gentler than Ajax or Comet.

using zud scouring cleanser
The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

The Works Limassol

The chief active ingredient in The Works Limeosol is hydrochloric acid, which instantly removes rust, hard water stains, and mineral deposits from appliances, bathroom fixtures, cement, brick, vinyl, siding, fiberglass, PVC, and other materials on contact—no scrubbing required. The Works is tried and true: it’s been around for more than 50 years. And, even though it contains a dangerous chemical, it’s long been a celebrated favorite among homeowners and home service professionals alike. The Works Limeosol is not recommended for use with septic systems, as the chemical will interfere with the biological breakdown of wastes.

Take precautions if you use LImeosol, as this is a caustic chemical that will sting …

Hotel Plumbing Management: How to Optimise It
June 16, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves
Hotel Plumbing Management: How to Optimise It

Managing a hotel has always been a challenging job. With hundreds of guests using the facilities every day, not nearly half of them consider saving water as they would at their homes. On the other hand, plumbing malfunctions and associated interventions and repair cost you additional money, as the room needs to remain vacant until the work is done. So in order to keep your water bill low and plumbing costs minimal, nothing much remains but to adopt these commercial plumbing management tips.

Install low-flow devices

From inexpensive showerheads and factures to toilets, today many products meet the low flow criteria. Despite the increasing water expenses, hotels are hesitant to make a switch to low-flow fixtures as they fear it will damage their customers’ experience. However, low-flow doesn’t have to mean low-performance. Low-flow devices and appliances don’t affect the water pressure, but simply regulate the amount of water released per unit of time, yet those two sometimes get confused. Low-flow heads and faucets use aerators that disperse the water jet into many tiny streams, so the same ‘volume’ can be achieved with less water.

Use hair catchers

This Mushroom-Shaped Hair Catcher Is So Gross, But Really Satisfying

It’s only natural that your guests would appreciate long, relaxing, spa-like showers and baths after a long journey, but nothing can spoil their enjoyment like the discovery that the shower or bathtub is clogged. Bathroom drain clogs can be caused by soap, toothpaste, even calcium, and another mineral build-up, however, the most notorious contributor is the hair. People naturally lose hair while in the shower, and over time, it builds up in the drains where it combines nicely with soap scum and other sticky matter. Having hair catchers installed on each drain not only prevents loose hair from entering the system but saves the hotel thousands of dollars on drain cleaning services.

Schedule regular drain cleaning

Understanding Types of Drain Cleaning Equipment - Facilities Management  Insights

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Instead of waiting for the clog to take place, why don’t include drain cleaning into a regular maintenance routine? Emergency drain cleaning services often include clean-ups that follow overflows and backups. preventive maintenance, on the other hand, includes scheduled hydro-jetting cleaning once every few months, ensuring the drains in your hotel plumbing system are clear and free from clogs. How often you might need this service depends on the size of your hotel, an estimate which an experienced commercial plumber will easily tell.

Consider tempering valves

Managing one of the hotel’s systems always includes taking responsibility for the safety of people who use associated amenities, and plumbing is not an exception. Among hot tap water scalds that require admission to the hospital, over 90% are sustained in the bathroom, resulting primarily from immersion in baths with water heated to unsafe temperatures. Certain pros, as guys behind Hot Water Nurse, for instance, combine the skills of both electrician and plumber and are experts for installing and repairing a range of hot water devices, such as the hot water tempering valve, which acts like a safety device that shields your guests from overheated water that comes directly from your storage tank.

Plan for sewer pipe inspection

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Away from home and daily tribulations, many guests forget the bathroom etiquette, flushing down things they’d never flush at home. And when things go south, pardon the pun, what seems like a local problem might easily affect the drain system of an entire floor. Scheduling a video camera pipe inspection each year not only helps identify potential problems but buys you the peace of mind that comes with knowing that the “outgoing” end of your plumbing system works flawlessly.

Hotel plumbing specifics

Plumbing utility demands and hot water use in hotels follow a pattern that is in many ways different from other commercial venues. A conventional hotel can experience a spread out, or a very short peak demand period for hot water. If the majority of guests in a 4,000-room hotel are there for the same convention as regular 8 a.m. meetings, it can create a high utility demand over a short period when those guests are in their bathrooms

Don’t Neglect Tool Maintenance
June 10, 2021 Blog Jeffrey Steeves
When you’re swept up in a busy workday, it can be easy to let tool maintenance fall by the wayside, but it’s worth keeping it a priority

 

Don’t Neglect Tool Maintenance

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Does this sound familiar? It’s the beginning of the workday, and you already feel behind schedule. Or maybe it’s the end of a long shift, and you just want to get home. But it is also what typically leads to tool maintenance getting overlooked.

Tool maintenance is critical to the safe use and longevity of your equipment. Along with minimizing tool wear and tear, proper maintenance can enhance efficiency and make tools easier to control and use. For example, with proper maintenance, sharp cutting tools take less effort to cut, are less likely to bind and will cut more quickly.

To help you keep your tools in prime shape, here are answers to some frequently asked tool maintenance questions:

What are some general tips for keeping tools working longer?

Before using a tool for the first time, read the manual. Then, periodically during the life of the tool, reference the manual for best use practices. Understanding how a tool is supposed to work and what to look for when it isn’t functioning properly can go a long way in enhancing its longevity. You’ll also want to wipe down tools after each use and regularly lubricate any moving parts indicated by the manual.

How often should tools be checked for needed maintenance?

You should always follow the instructions in each tool’s manual for maintenance. However, a good rule of thumb is to inspect and maintain your tool before each use. Additionally, look for chips or dings and other wear and tear that could interfere with operation during use. Pay attention to any changes in operation that could be fixed with some routine maintenance.

Related: Built for Longevity

What maintenance is overlooked within some specific categories of plumbing tools?

Jetters: Take time to clean the letter tips. Remove the tips and flush the letter hose of any debris or particles. At RIDGID, we find that many repair returns can be attributed to this issue alone. Also, when storing machines for the winter, ensure water is removed from the entire system. RV anti-freeze can be used to protect the system.

Drum Machines: Ensure that the auto-feed is functioning properly. The feed handle and feed rollers should move freely and not bind.

Sectional Machines: The clutch handle should move freely and should stop cable rotation when released.

Cables: Maintain lubrication on cable couplings so that drain cleaning tools are not lost down the pipe.

Hand Tools: Keep tools clean and free of any grit and keep cutter wheels, pins and rolls lubricated.

How do you decide if maintenance can be handled on your own or if a tool should be sent in for repairs?

Cleaning and lubricating tools can always be done by the user and often replacing worn parts like cutters, dies, etc. can be handled by users as well. The product manual should provide instructions for basic types of tool services. Depending on how comfortable the user is with the necessary steps, they can decide whether to handle the repair themselves or take it to an authorized repair center.

For machines, any electrical issues (ground fault interrupter failure, for example) should be sent to an authorized repair center. Anything else not addressed by the product manual should also be done by an authorized independent service center for the tool. This maintains the integrity of the product.

The secret to long tool life, in short, is: Keep your tools clean, lubed, and drain cleaning machines free of standing water. Follow the manual and keep an eye out for any irregularities. When in doubt, visit an authorized service center.

About the Author

Doug Corlett is the manager of the RIDGID Factory Service Center. RIDGID is a global manufacturer of more than 300 dependable and innovative tools, trusted by professional trades.…