Quality Plumbing Services

Entries Tagged as Home Remedies

What Causes Sewer Odors and How Can They Be Prevented?

June 07, 2017 · No Comments

As plumbers, two of the most difficult things we deal with are sewer smells and mystery leaks. Both are very difficult to locate and both can be very difficult to correct. I want to give you a few simple tips you can look for if dealing with a sewer odor and what you can do to possibly correct it yourself without spending a whole lot of time and money.

 

Sewer odor and gases are always present in the sewer system and cannot be eliminated. That is why there are provisions in the plumbing code to insure that vent pipes and p-traps are installed at all fixtures throughout your home or building. The vent systems are designed to carry odor out through the roof; while traps provide a water seal and prevent gases from coming back into the house.

 

Some of the most common causes of sewer gases and odor entering houses are:

- Basement floor drains that have dried out. Floor drains (and all fixtures) should have water in the p-traps. The water is what provides the seal preventing sewer gas and odor from entering the home.

- Seldom used fixtures such as a shower, toilet, or sink may also have a dry p-trap.

- Clean-out plugs missing or improperly installed.

- Ejector pump lid improperly sealed.

- Partial obstructed or blocked sewer. If you notice your toilets gurgling or irregular water level in the bowl, this could be a sign of a more serious sewer problem.

- Cracked or corroded vent piping. This is the most difficult condition to locate because much of the vent piping is behind walls.

 

Visually check these conditions and pour water into any unused drains; your problem may be as simple as a dry trap. You would be surprised how many sewer odor problems can be eliminated just by refilling the p-traps.

 

Keep in mind that atmospheric conditions can have an affect on when you may get odor inside the house. When barometric pressure is low or falling, the air outside is heavier than air in the sewer system and any openings in the sewer system will discharge sewer gas or odors.

If odor problems continue, you may have a more complicated issue. In which case, you may need professional help.

 

Quality Plumbing Services can perform a smoke test on your drain and vent system. We conduct this test using a smoke generator to pressurize your entire plumbing system and pinpoint any leaks or breeches in your vent piping, even behind walls. This process is safe and harmless to you and your family; the smoke is similar to what you might see at a nightclub or haunted house or used for special effects.

 

Quality Plumbing Services can also completely check the sewer system using our state-of-the-art video inspection equipment. Power rodding can clear an obstructed or partially obstructed sewer which could eliminate the source of a sewer odor. If you are having an issue with a sewer smell, please contact Quality Plumbing Services at 630-227-0200 or 847-259-0200 and schedule an appointment today!

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

Hazards of Chemical Drain Cleaners

February 28, 2013 · No Comments

 

We have all seen the television commercials with liquid and chemical drain cleaners showing this “miracle” product that will unclog your drains. What the manufacturers do not tell you is that some of these products can contain sodium hypochlorite (bleach), sodium hydroxide (lye) or potassium hydroxide (caustic potash) in concentrations up to 50%, while the products classified as “industrial strength” contain high concentrations of sulphuric acid.

There are many disadvantages to chemical drain cleaners including their lack of effectiveness for removing clogs far from the drain opening (only in commercials is the clog located in the trap) or blockages in the main sewer line. These clogs require professional plumbers with proper power rodding equipment to clear these drains.

Also, there are many safety considerations for chemical drain cleaners. Danger arises from their potential to injure eyes, lungs and skin as well as many household materials such as wood, paint and aluminum. Certain drain cleaners when mixed with common cleaning products, or used together can emit toxic gases which can be very dangerous.

One other major disadvantage is that some of these products may be harmful to your piping system. Older galvanized (steel) pipes may become damaged due to the corrosive nature of the product causing them to leak. These products can also damage porcelain, enamel, chrome and other decorative metal finishes of plumbing fixtures.

 

The only proven method to properly clear clogged drains and sewers is to have your drains power rodded. Let a Quality Plumbing Services Inc. technician provide you with options for clearing your drains in a safe, economical and effective manner. Call us today at 847-259-0200 or visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com.

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

How To Avoid Plumbing Problems This Holiday Season!

December 12, 2012 · No Comments

  Want to know what what one of the biggest increases is on the day after Christmas? No, not sales at your favorite stores. It's calls to your local plumber. The numbers show that calls to plumbers increase almost 50% during the holidays. There are various reasons for this, including an increased amount of water usage, dumping of dangerous waste down the disposal, and already clogged drains that decide to fully clog at the most inopportune times.

Increased Water Usage - If you have a house full of guests, chances are there is increased water usage. The toilet flushes more, the washing machine gets used more, and the shower and even kitchen sink are used more frequently. If your plumbing is not used to this kind of activity, it could put a strain on the household plumbing, causing something to break down. If you have a house full of guests, try to time showers or other excessive water usage into 10-minute increments, in case there are problems with your drains. This gives your drain ample time to recoup before the next shower.

Dumping Dangerous Waste - It is common for homeowners to dump anything and everything down the kitchen drain. Unfortunately, the garbage disposal is not meant for everything. In fact, there are very few items that are acceptable to throw down the drain without causing a problem. In order to avoid clogging your drain over the Holidays, you should:

1) Never throw fat or oil down the drain

2) Never throw anything with strings, strong exteriors or that are full of fiber down the drain, such as potato peels or turkey skin

3) Never fill the disposal and then run it – run the disposal as you fill it to avoid it having to overwork.

 

Pre-Existing Problems - Many times drains or other plumbing fixtures have a pre-existing problem that is exasperated by the increased amount of water usage. If you suspect a problem with your plumbing, it is best to get it looked at before the Christmas and New Year's holidays. This will prevent the risk of losing water or the use of your drains on Christmas, as well as save you money on expensive plumbing bills.

Give Quality Plumbing Services Inc. a call today at 847-259-0200 and let us address any concerns you may have with your plumbing before the upcoming Holidays! Visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com for more information about our services!

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

How To Choose A Toilet

August 17, 2012 · No Comments

Okay, so maybe it’s not something you think of everyday … but it is something you use everyday.

In 1994, the National Energy Policy Act of 1992 went into effect for all residential toilets, requiring that all toilets made and sold in the U.S. meet water efficiency standards. Those standards set the upper limit of a single flush at 1.6 gallons of water. So, while you don’t have a choice as to the flush capacity, you do have choices in design.

Shape - toilets are available with either an elongated front or a round front. Round front bowls are shorter in length than elongated bowls, and are suitable for smaller, more compact spaces. Toilets can either be one piece or two. A one piece toilet provides a seamless look, where the tank and the bowl are seamed together. It has a smoother appearance and is easier to clean. Two piece toilets have a separate tank and bowl. They are usually less stylish and less expensive.

Flushing System - today’s toilets are either gravity fed or pressure assisted. Gravity fed toilets use water to push everything from the tank into the bowl, then back up through an S shaped trap, where pull action empties the bowl and finishes the flush. Pressure assisted toilets fills the tank with water and air, forcing the water into the bowl with a pressurized release. In general, a pressure assisted toilet will be noisier and tougher to repair than their gravity fed counterpart.

Appearance - proper function is paramount in making your decision. At the same time, the appearance also plays a part in your selection. Many models, styles and color choices are available in a variety of sizes.

Call Quality Plumbing Services Inc. today at 847-259-0200 to get all your toilet options or visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com.

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

Should You Really Consider Replacing Your Toilet?

August 15, 2012 · No Comments

There are many different things you can do in your home to become more energy efficient. But probably one of the easiest to do – and one that will save you a tremendous amount over a short period of time – is replacing your older toilets with new water saving models.

We’ll use a typical family of four as an example. The average family of four consumes around 300-400 gallons of water per day on things like drinking, cooking, bathing, and cleaning. An old toilet uses about 5 gallons per flush. If one person flushes a toilet seven times on average per day, the family of four will consume 140 gallons per day just in flushing, or 30-50 percent of their daily water usage.

But if that same family installs new water saving toilets, which typically use 1.6 gallons per flush, your water savings would be close to 100 gallons a day per household. Add that up for the week, or even for the year, and you’ll soon discover how just this one change can add up to some serious water savings … which equates to a savings in your water bill as well!

Call Quality Plumbing Services Inc. today at 847-259-0200 for all your plumbing needs or visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com!

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

Is It Wise To Replace Your Own Water Heater?

August 09, 2012 · No Comments

 

 

In today’s tough economic times, we’re all looking for ways to save money. Instead of paying for a professional to do something, sometimes it’s just as easy to run down to the hardware store, buy the parts, and do it yourself.

But in some cases its better to let a professional take on the project. And the new installation of a water heater is one such job.

Replacing your water heater takes on many different risks: fire, electrocution, explosion and carbon monoxide poisoning. There are a lot of different parts that have to be hooked up properly in order to ensure the safety of you and your family. A professional is experienced and trained to make sure everything is running smooth and efficiently.

A professional can also make suggestions as to the right water heater for you. He can determine how long you will be living in your current home, your consumption needs, and give you options that will provide you the best product that runs the most efficiently. No guessing as to what fits your home and what’s right for your usage.

Let Quality Plumbing Services help you decide which water heater is right for your home or business. Call us today at 847-259-0200 or visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com.

 

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

9 Things You Never Knew About Your Water Heater

August 07, 2012 · No Comments

  1. The typical water heater holds 40 to 60 gallons of water.

  2. The inner steel holding tank normally has a bonded glass liner to prevent rust from entering the water supply.

  3. The normal temperature of water sitting in a water heater is between 120 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. We as licensed plumbers set the water heater to 120 degrees, no more due to risk of scalding and no less due to risk of Legionella, especially with seniors or children living in the home.

  4. Each 10 degree reduction in your water temperature setting can cut the cost of the heater’s energy consumption by as much as 3-5%.

  5. A leaking water heater usually means the glass liner is cracked. Replacement is your only option to avoid a complete break and possible flooding.

  6. A dripping water heater is the beginning sign of a leak. The only option is for replacement.

  7. A water heater uses the “Heat Rises Principle.” As cold water enters the water heater, it remains at the bottom of the tank. As it heats, it rises to the top.

  8. Most water heaters have a life of 10 to 12 years. Your plumber can tell you how much life it has left if you’re approaching the 10 year mark.

  9. A hot water recirculation system saves many gallons of water. Plus you get the added bonus of instant hot water.

Call Quality Plumbing Services today at 847-259-0200 for all of your plumbing needs and visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com to learn more about us!

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

10 Worst Things to Put in Garbage Disposal

July 26, 2012 · No Comments


 

While garbage disposals are one of the most frequently used items in the kitchen, it may be easy to overlook how to keep it in top shape. Here’s a look at 10 things to avoid sending down the drain.

  1. Vegetable peelings - if you are peeling a bunch of potatoes or carrots, place them in your garbage instead of sending them down the disposal. The peels in excess can gum up on the grinder and in the pipes, backing up the system.

  2. Fruit pits - cherry pits, peach pits, nectarine pits or any type of fruit that has a hard, middle seed.

  3. Celery stalks - celery is string-fibrous and can produce the same affect as vegetable peelings. Avoid sending celery down in excess.

  4. Fats and grease - fats and grease will adhere to the pipes over time, creating back-ups and clogged pipes.

  5. Pasta - starchy substances will stick to both the grinder and the pipes. In excess, pasta can quickly cause back-ups.

  6. Rice - rice is similar to pasta, and will cause back-up when put down the disposal in excess.

  7. Coffee grounds - coffee grounds in excess can act in a similar manner to rice and pasta, clogging up both the grinder and the pipes.

  8. Paper, plastic, glass - avoid sending down paper such as coffee filters, or bits of packaging as you are taking items out of their wrappers.

  9. Egg shells - the pieces of shell can linger in the pipes and eventually cause a clog.

  10. Shells from shellfish or bones - bones from items like chicken, or shells from shellfish can break off and get caught in the grinder.

    Call Quality Plumbing Services for all of your plumbing needs at 847-259-0200 or visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com!

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

8 Ways to Help You Save Water

July 23, 2012 · No Comments

 

 

Use these 8 tips to help you save water around your home – and become a little greener in the process.

  1. Adjust your sprinklers so they water your landscaping only and not your house, drive-way, sidewalk or street.

  2. When washing dishes by hand, don’t let the water run for rinsing. Fill up the sink with clean rinse water.

  3. Install covers over your swimming pools, spas, and hot tubs. Check for leaks around your pumps.

  4. Monitor your water bill for unusually high charges. A high charge may be an indication of a leak somewhere in your water lines.

  5. Monitor inside and outside faucets, hoses and sprinklers for damage and leaks. Outdoor leaks may be harder to spot, but can be just as costly over the course of the summer.

  6. Use your washing machine only when you have a full load of laundry. Or match the water level in your washing machine to the correct level of clothes.

  7. Make water conservation a family issue. Teach kids how to conserve by turning off faucets tightly after each use, and watching for leaks in their bathrooms.

  8. Install a hot water circulation system to have instant hot water within your home. Even in the summer, its nice to take a warm shower or have hot water to wash dishes. This will save hundreds of gallons per year by not requiring warm up time before use.

Call Quality Plumbing Services at 630-227-0200 for any plumbing repairs or installations! Visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies

What To Do First When A Plumbing Emergency Occurs

June 27, 2012 · No Comments

No matter how careful we all are, there will be a time when a plumbing emergency arises within our homes.

 

 

During a plumbing emergency, the first step is to stop the flow of water immediately. Know where your main water shut-off valve is, and where the shut-off valve is for each fixture or appliance in your home. Also make sure every member of your family knows the locations as well.

If the water flow is coming from a fixture or an appliance, shut off the water source for that item. Shut off valves can usually be found underneath toilets and sinks, and behind washing machines, dishwashers and other appliances. If the item doesn’t have a shut off valve, you can’t locate it, or the problem appears to be a leaky pipe or affecting a wider area, go to the main shut off valve for the house.

To avoid more damage, clean-up should begin immediately. Mop up any excess or standing water, and remove items like rugs, furniture and drapes to a dry, safe location.

Then assess the situation. Is it a “do it yourself” plumbing project? Or would it be better to call in a plumber? If you will be hiring a plumber, call Quality Plumbing Services at 847-259-0200 and get the appointment scheduled as quickly as possible. We offer 24 hour, 7 day a week service! Visit our website at www.qualityplumbingchicago.com

No CommentsTags: Home Remedies