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DIY Plumbing - Advice for Do It Yourself Plumbers

The Worst Plumbing Emergencies—How you can Forestall Them

Posted in DIY Plumbing on 8th May 2018

flooded-house

Plumbing disasters are among the worst kind of disasters a home can face. Losing electrical power to a house is an aggravation and can bring life to a standstill. But when plumbing fiascoes happen, it can put the house itself in danger because of water damage and hygienic issues. You want to be certain you can reach a 24-hour plumber capable of handling any emergency plumbing in Orlando, FL your house may have to deal with.

Below are a few of the biggest plumbing emergencies you may run into. If one of these happens, call our team right away, any time of the day or night: we offer 24/7 emergency service. We also have advice for how to prevent some of these disasters ahead of time.

Major pipe leaks

Leaks in a home’s plumbing can often remain hidden from sight for a long time, leaving only minor signs that they’re occurring. Watching for these warnings—discolored stains on the walls or ceiling, higher water bills, lower water pressure, odd behavior from the water heater—can help you solve the leak before it becomes bigger. If the leak escapes your attention, you could have a sudden danger of flooding on your hands. Make sure you know where the water main shut-off valve is located so you can stop the water flow first before calling a plumber.

Slab leaks

These are insidious leaks that are hard to spot because they occur down in the stone foundation of a home. Slab leaks create a major waste of water and can cause serious damage to the home’s foundation unless they’re fixed. Only professional plumbers can locate the slab leak and fix it. If you hear running water in the basement when there’s no source for it, notice cracks along the concrete foundation, or have extraordinarily high water bills, call for professional plumbers ASAP.

Loss of freshwater because of a broken water main

You turn on the faucets in your house, and nothing happens. Your first thought may be that it’s a municipal trouble—and chances are good that you’re correct. Check with the neighbors to see if they’re experiencing the same problems. If they aren’t, you may have a broken water main. Never ignore signs of this, such as dampness on the lawn when there is no reason for it or an unexplained drop in water pressure around the house.

Blocked or damaged sewer line

You probably don’t give much thought to your sewer line. Who wants to? But if the sewer line becomes blocked because of too much material (such as actual garbage) trapped in it or due to the infiltration of tree roots, it will lead to sewage backing up into the house. This not only disrupts the house, it creates unhealthy conditions. It’s a true “nightmare scenario” for homes. You can head off this trouble by looking for signs of problems, such as an increase in the amount of clogs in your drains or sewer smells coming from them.

Modern Plumbing – 4Plumbers, Inc. has served Central Florida since 1975. Call us for all your plumbing needs, emergency or otherwise.

Is a Hybrid Water Heater Price It?

Posted in DIY Plumbing on 24th April 2018

money-saving-piggy-bankThe water heater of a home is one of its most important components. It uses more energy than any other appliance, since, unlike the air conditioner or the central heating system, it needs to operate every day people are home. When you are in the situation of purchasing a new water heater, you want to make the best choice possible—because hopefully you’ll be living with this same system for more than a decade to come.

Today, you have more options for a water heater than before. The standard storage tank water heater is still around. But you may also wish to consider installing a tankless water heater—or a hybrid water heater.

How a hybrid water heater may benefit your home

First, what do we mean by a “hybrid” water heater? It’s an electric water heater that combines a heat pump system with a storage tank water heater. Rather than use electrical resistance to heat the water in the tank (i.e. running voltage through heating elements to turn them hot), the water heater draws heat from the ambient air around the water heater using the heat pump. The refrigerant in the heat pump that absorbed the outside heat transports it to a heat exchanger that then releases it into the tank to raise the water temperature.

What’s the benefit compared to using standard electric water heater? It’s much more energy efficient. Electrical resistance heating consumes a lot of power. A hybrid water heater can cut down bills: an average household of four can save around $ 3,500 over the unit’s lifetime.

That’s great savings—but will it actually do the job I need?

This is the big question, since a hybrid system isn’t necessarily right for all homes. If you use a natural gas water heater because you have access to a gas line, it’s best to stick with gas models. A hybrid heat pump is best for an all-electric home.

Your home must also have sufficient space for the system. A hybrid water heater requires more open area around it to work because it has to draw on heat in the air. If the water heater is in a small closet, it will lose efficiency. Hybrids are also taller than storage tank models, another factor to take into account.

Finally, the ambient air temperature needs to be high enough for the heat pump to have sufficient thermal energy to use. But this is Florida—you’re fine.

Work with the pros!

Making the final choice for a water heater model needs to be done with the assistance of a professional plumber with knowledge of different water heater models. You must have professionals to install the new system, so see that they’re involved from the start to help with picking the ideal new water heater and sizing it correctly.

Trust all your Orlando, FL  plumbing needs—and that includes water heater installations and repairs—to our expert team. We have more than 30 years of history helping homes and businesses in the area with the best skilled, professional plumbing. We take pride in what we do and believe in honesty and integrity in our decisions.

Modern Plumbing – 4Plumbers, Inc. has proudly served Central Florida since 1975.

A Few Uncommon Causes of Drain Clogs

Posted in DIY Plumbing on 10th April 2018

Orlando Drain ServicesWhat causes the majority of clogs in household drains? There are a couple of usual suspects: hair, food waste, grease, fats, soap scum, and small objects like bottle caps accidentally tipped over into the sink. When people call us for a plumber in Orlando, FL to unclog a drain, we often find ourselves dealing with one of the typical drainpipe blockers. No problem, we’ve got the best equipment (like hydro-jetters) and some of the best-trained plumbers around to clear out that drain in no time.

Of course, life is often weird, and plumbing can be extremely weird. Drains can collect some strange things down in them that lead to tough blockages. We’ve been in the business for a long time—more than 40 years—so we’ve come across some bizarre drain cleaning issues. We can take care of them all, don’t worry about that, but we’d like to go over some of the odder reasons a drain can become clogged.

Smart phones

Yeah, smart phones. You’re probably thinking, “Wait, a smart phone doesn’t fit down a drain!” That’s true for most drains in a house—except the toilet. A smart phone can sometimes end up dropped down a toilet and clog it. This is a big deal, as you can imagine, and you’ll need a plumber to get this fixed. (We’re afraid we won’t be able to salvage the phone, however.)

Kids’ toys

This one is a bit hard to stop, because younger kids just like to drop things down drains. And they can certainly knock toys over by accident into sinks. Small toys can easily end up in toilets and other drains around the house, and it first you may not notice the blockage—until other objects catch on the toy and you end up with clog no basic store-bought plunger is going to fix!

Cement

Here’s where we have to be stern: please don’t attempt to do plumbing fixes or changes on your own. Homeowners sometimes try to go DIY to plug up drains that aren’t in use anymore using cement. Unfortunately, like many DIY projects, this often goes wrong and the cement ends up in a drain that is in use. You definitely need experts to get this problem solved.

Vermin

It’s not a pleasant thought, but small animals can get inside your home and create trouble. You don’t want rats and mice in your house at all, for many reasons. One of them is because these critters can get down inside a drain and blocking it. Oh, yeah, one more thing—snakes can do this too. And we have snakes in Florida. We don’t want to frighten you—these are rare causes of drain clogs—but it can happen.

Cat litter

Here’s one that you can avoid easily: don’t dispose of kitty litter down the toilet! Or down the garbage disposal or any other drain. Cat litter must be disposed of in the actual outdoor garbage. The big problem with cat litter in the drain is the clumping action, which can create some of the toughest clogs you can imagine.

Whatever you’ve got clogging up the drains in your home, trust to us to fix the problem!

Modern Plumbing – 4Plumbers, Inc. has proudly served Central Florida with quality plumbing for more than 40 years.

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