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DIY Plumbing - Advice for Do It Yourself Plumbers

What’s That Knocking Sound from My Pipes?

Posted in DIY Plumbing on 27th March 2018

water-waveA strange sound suddenly comes from your pipes—an odd and sometimes surprising knocking noise. Is your house haunted?

No … although plenty of people have jumped to this assumption since the invention of indoor plumbing. What you’re actually hearing is a phenomenon called water hammer. It’s a common occurrence, but it also indicates a problem in your plumbing you may need remedied by a professional plumber. Let’s take a closer look at the truth behind this ghostly occurrence…

The Cause of Water Hammer

Water hammer is what happens when the water flowing through pipes is brought to a sudden stop or is forced to change it direction abruptly, such as when a tap is turned off. This generates a sudden surge in pressure, and the vibrations in the pipe create the spooky noise of water hammer.

But why doesn’t this happen all the time? Shouldn’t you hear water hammer anytime you turn off a faucet, or when an appliance stops demanding water?

The reason that water hammer isn’t occurring constantly is because your plumbing contains air chambers in it designed specifically to prevent these pressure spikes. If you start to encounter water hammer regularly, it often means the air chambers are waterlogged.

Why Water Hammer Isn’t Good for Your Plumbing

The problem with water hammer isn’t so much the noise it makes (although nobody likes that either). It’s the increase in pressure. These pressure spikes can cause damage in the piping—even including burst pipes! They also can inflict damage on appliances such as the dishwasher and laundry machine. When water hammer is affecting your plumbing routinely, call for a professional plumber to check it out.

Stopping Water Hammer

There are a number of ways for a professional plumber to fix water hammer in a home. The most common is to restore the air in the air chambers. These air chambers are vertical pipes near the valves on the main pipes. A plumber can drain out all the water from the plumbing system and fill up the air chambers again. The chambers may also need to be cleaned.

Another potential reason for water hammer is that water pressure in your plumbing system is too high. This is often a municipal issue, so you can’t change the problem at the source. Instead, a plumber can install a pressure-reducing valve (water pressure regulator). The regulator will lower the pressure in the plumbing between 30 and 55 psi. Only trust this job to a professional so you have the correct pressure.

Let Professionals Update Your Plumbing

If water hammer is only one of a number of issues you routinely encounter with your plumbing, the trouble may be outdated pipes. If your home was built earlier than 1970, the plumbing may be failing due to age. In this case, we recommend you arrange for pipe replacement in Orlando, FL or elsewhere in our service area. You’ll not only eliminate water hammer, you’ll stop numerous leaks and clogs in the future and enjoy a generally efficient and trouble-free plumbing system.

Modern Plumbing – 4Plumbers, Inc. has Proudly Served Central Florida Since 1975.

What Units a Skilled Plumber Above the Relaxation?

Posted in DIY Plumbing on 13th March 2018

wrenchesPlumbing is a part of a house that people often think they can repair themselves. You might be able to change the washers on a sink or put in aerators, but other jobs require a plumber. Not an amateur who makes big promises for low prices! You need to hire an actual professional plumber with the right training and credentials.

What sets a professional plumber above an amateur? It’s more than just training, although that’s a good place to start. There are some important qualities that set a professional plumber apart.

Here’s What Makes a Professional Plumber a Professional

Let’s take a look at what separates a professional plumbing contractor from an amateur.

  • State licensing: The first thing to look for when you’re on the hunt for a plumber is licensing from the State of Florida. The contractor should have the license displayed on their website and on all business materials, and they can produce the license for you upon request. (For the record, our license is #CFC1429412.)
  • Insured: Insurance is vital for any contractor who does work in a house. If an uninsured worker is hurt while on private property, the homeowner can be made liable if their insurance company denies the claim. Professional plumbers are insured to protect their customers.
  • Background checks for employees: It’s an unfortunate fact that criminals often use their employment as a way to case homes for potential robbery targets. A professional plumbing company will ensure this isn’t the case by screening employees with background checks. Professionals want you to know who’s in your house!
  • Affiliations: Professional plumbing contractors will have affiliations with state and national groups such as the PHCC (The Plumbing, Heating, and Cooling Contractors Association) and ABC (Associated Builders and Contractors). You can always ask a plumber what other affiliations they have.
  • Equipment: Amateurs may be able to get their hands on some advanced tools, but not many. Only professionals will have a full complement of advanced equipment to handle plumbing jobs, such as hydro-jetters.

What Sets Us Above the Rest

We have all the qualifications listed above. But we also have qualities that set us above much of the competition. The most important is our work philosophy, “The Modern Way.” We require honesty and integrity in all our dealings and a dedication to doing work right the first time. We pledge to establish long-lasting relationships with our clients by always meeting and exceeding their expectations. Our customers always receive quality service at fair market prices.

We also have the special Seal of Security & Confidence so you know that we’re licensed, bonded, insured, and our employees have undergone full criminal background checks. There are many companies who claim to be licensed, insured, and bonded but are not—with The Seal, you’ll know that we are!

The next time you need a plumber in Apopka, FL or elsewhere in Central Florida, we’re the contractor to call!

Modern Plumbing – 4Plumbers, Inc. has proudly served Central Florida since 1975. Quality, performance, and value are our commitment to you!

Why Corrosion Is (Often) Not a Drawback for a Water Heater

Posted in DIY Plumbing on 27th February 2018

water-heater-tankWhen water meets metal, there’s a danger of corrosion starting. Corrosion is a chemical reaction between water and metal in the presence of oxygen, and the damage it causes to metal can quickly ruin many types of appliances as it weakens the metal until it starts to crumble away.

The water heater in your home is primarily made of metal and it stores and circulates water. So why doesn’t it start to rust? Corrosion is rare in water heaters, usually only starting late in the system’s life. there are several reasons for it.

The Tank Lining

The tank of a water heater is usually made of durable steel. But the inside lining is made of glass, which doesn’t corrode. It is possible for cracks in the glass to permit water to reach the metal, which will not only lead to rust but to leaks as well.

The Absence of Air in the Tank

Older water heaters kept a cushion of air at the top of the tank to prevent water pressure spikes. However, allowing air into the tank allowed for corrosion to begin. Newer water heaters remove air entirely from the tank and instead use an expansion tank placed over the main one to absorb the water pressure increases.

The Sacrificial Anode Rod

The name sounds like some sort of magical device in a fantasy movie. And maybe sacrificial anode rods are a bit magical, because through simple action they can prevent corrosion and rust from rapidly ruining a water heater. This rod (also called the cathodic anode rod) runs the length of the center of the tank. It’s made from two different pieces of metal that attract the oxidization ions that cause corrosion. Basically, an anode rod corrodes so the rest of the system won’t, “sacrificing” itself.

Eventually an anode rod will corrode completely, and then the rest of the water heater is at risk. This is one of the reasons that routine professional water heater maintenance is essential. A technician will check on the condition of the sacrificial anode rod and see if it needs to be replaced. Although you can have the plumber show you how to check the anode rod yourself during the middle of the year, it requires a professional to put in a new one to ensure you have the correct type.

When Corrosion Does Happen …

An aging water heater (more than 15 years in service) may start to corrode, no matter its defenses. It might not be from water but from the combustion gases from the burner. Whatever is the cause for corrosion to start to affect the system, it usually means it’s time to replace the water heater. Repairs can’t do much to reverse the development of corrosion.

You don’t need to look far for a plumber in Lake Mary, FL who can take care of any problems you experience with your water heater. Our plumbers work with many types of water heaters, so if corrosion indicates it’s time to have the unit replaced, we can recommend excellent upgrades such as a tankless water heater or heat pump water heater.

Proudly serving Central Florida since 1975: Modern Plumbing – 4Plumbers, Inc.

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