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Hot Water Heater Issues

Taking care of your hot water heater will ensure plenty of hot water for years to come, the reverse is also true of course, not taking care of the unit will mean sporadic hot water often at the most inconvenient times.  There are some steps you the homeowner can do, and others best left to the professionals at Jersey Plumbing Service.

Signs that your hot water heater is not working the way it should:

  • You don't have enough hot water: Try the easiest fix first, adjust the temperature dial on your water heater to a higher degree, wait about 30 minutes and then check the water temperature at the faucet. Make sure the circuit breaker is in the ‘on’ position, as it can trip.  For an electric water heater, if the circuit breaker trips often, you’ll want to contact a professional. The unit may be pulling more energy than it needs perhaps due to wiring or electrical problems. If that doesn't change anything, draining the water tank to remove sediment may work and will  boost the unit's efficiency.
  • You have varying water temperature issues: This might be as simple as regulating the thermostat if what is happening is the water being too hot or not hot enough. If the heating element needs to be replaced though, call in Jersey Plumbing to resolve it.  They can also assess if the unit you have is big enough for the people using it. While a smaller tank will be fine for 2 people, a larger tank will be needed for 6 people.
  • You have a leaking water heater: Water from a hot water heater is hot! A leaking water heater typically indicates a serious internal failure. If you notice water dripping from the unit or pooling around the bottom of the tank, put safety first and disconnect the electricity or turn off the gas.  Now you can inspect to see where the leak is coming from. Check for any loose pipes or connectors, as well as the inlet. Condensation is expected, but actual water or dampness that extends out is not.  Again, calling on a professional is best.
  • Noises: When you can hear the hot water heater banging or other noises, that is a definite sign that it is failing.  Vibrating is also not a good sign.
  • Age of your hot water heater: Hot water heaters don’t last forever. Generally, they last between six and thirteen years.  So, if yours is closer to eleven years old, realize that even with regular maintenance, the time for replacing it is getting closer.  The professionals at Jersey Plumbing Service can address all your concerns whether it by fixing what is wrong with your present unit, or by installing a new unit that fits the needs of your family.

Keeping your hot water heater well maintained will go a long way towards extending the life of your equipment. Calling the experts at Jersey Plumbing with plumbing issues can save you time, and frustration.

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Leaking Outdoor Faucets

Leaky Outdoor Faucets

There is a lot to remember when preparing your home for the winter, putting gardening tools to the shed, checking on the snowblower, and finding where the snow shovels got to, shutting windows and the list goes on. Turning off the water to the outside faucets and covering them sometimes gets missed. In New Jersey, this can have expensive consequences, as the winters can start early and last long. This is one of the biggest issues you can encounter in the winter, as it leads to your pipes freezing, which can lead to them bursting. It isn’t usually the outside spigots that are the problem, although the spigots leaking can look like the issue, the pipework that supplies them are the culprits.

The easy answer is to drain your pipes.

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Steps to Draining Outdoor Pipes and Faucets:

Turn Off Exterior Water Supply Valve

In older homes, the valves are located at or near the ceiling somewhere close to the outside faucet. In newer homes, the valves are usually located right next to the main water valve and usually are labeled.

Remove Hoses and Connectors

Take away the outside hoses or any connectors on your outdoor faucets.

Remove Hoses and Connectors

Take away the outside hoses or any connectors on your outdoor faucets. Also, make sure to drain the hoses before putting them away for the season.

Completely Drain All Faucets

Turn the faucets on full blast until no more water flows out. Once the water has stopped draining out, Turn the faucet back off completely.

Cover Faucets

You can cover the faucets with an insulated cover from any hardware or home improvement store.  This will prevent anything from entering your faucets and pipes, including snow or ice. The heating inside your home will not be enough to protect the outside faucets.

Remember that water expands as it freezes, and ice takes up nearly 10% more space than water does. What that means is that a pipe already filled with water has no room for expansion if temperatures drop low enough for the water in the pipe to freeze. When that happens, something that has to give is usually the pipe itself, or the valves.

That’s when having the phone number to Jersey Plumbing comes in handy!

You can also insulate your pipes. This can help protect your plumbing and valves from extreme temperature variations. Make sure to seal any open spaces, gaps, or foundation cracks that allow cold air to circulate around the pipes. Close all the basement windows as well. If you have ever walked into your basement and it felt colder in one spot than the other, look for leaks or where heat might be escaping from. In the spring, remember to check the outdoor faucets for leaks before using the full water pressure. This applies even if you took care of the faucets before the worst of the winter season.

If you have any concerns about your pipes, valves, joints, or outside faucets being affected by the winter weather, call the experts at Jersey Plumbing can alleviate your concerns.

Jersey Plumbing(908) 281-7101

Remember! Sometimes the best tool is experience. When you need a Master Plumber to get the job done right, don’t hesitate to reach out to Jersey Plumbing Service for your plumbing needs.

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4 Easy Toilet Fixes You Can Do Yourself

Ah, Toilets. A Fixture we use constantly, but seldom think about. But when we have no choice but to think about them, its best to know how to fix the problem quickly, and get back to happy flushing in as little time possible.

4 Common & Easily Repaired Toilet Problems

The Water Level in the Tank is Too Low

First look at the valve, if it is off, turn it back on. Water in the tank needs to be about one inch from the top of the overflow tube. Then monitor the water level in the tank to make sure it refills to the right level.

The Lift Chain Isn’t Working

The lift chain, which attaches the flapper to the flushing handle on the outside of the toilet, can be too long, making the handle unable to raise the flapper. This causes a weak flush on the toilet. Shorten the chain length to let the chain raise the flapper off the flush tube and allow water to flow when the handle is pushed. 

Weird Water Levels in the Tank or Bowl

If the water level in either of these places is not what it used to be, remove the tank lid, look for the rubber flapper. Its job is to release water when the toilet is flushed and then seal the water intake hole afterward, maintaining the right water level. The flapper may be bent or too damaged to do the job. Turn off the water and drain the tank before removing the old one and putting it the new flapper. 

Clogs

With luck, plunging can do this common job. If plunging the toilet bowl is not sufficient to remove the clog, use a water closet auger (aka snake). Being careful to not scratch the porcelain bowl, put the end of the auger into the drain hole, and twist the handle while pushing the rotor downward. Afterwards, flush the toilet. 

None of These Solved My Problem

Jersey Plumbing is here to help! When all of the above fail, give us a call! 

Jersey Plumbing Service: (908) 281-7101

 
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The 7 Don’ts of Plumbing that Every Homeowner Should Know

1. Don’t block water supply valves or sewer cleanouts.

If you have a plumbing emergency, the last thing you want to do is fight with 100 under-the-sink cleaners, artificial plants, furniture, waste-baskets and other household items to access various water valves as water spews into your home.

2. Don’t close a tap too tightly.

When you close taps tightly, seals wear down faster. Be gentle with your plumbing fixtures to prevent the most common household leaks.

3. Don’t cut into walls, ceilings or floors blindly.

You may be surprised to find out how many pipes are in the walls, ceilings and floors of your home. Don’t ever cut into something in your home without knowing what’s behind there. Aside from rupturing pipes, you could also be getting the shock of your life.

4. Don’t attempt a do it yourself plumbing fix on a Sunday or holiday.

When easy plumbing fixes take a turn for the worse, having a plumber out after normal business hours can cost you more than your little project was budgeted for.

5. Don’t pour hot water into your toilet.

Toilet bowls are usually very cold. A drastic change in temperature can crack the bowl.

6. Don’t store things near your water heater.

Most people know enough not to store things near a furnace, but your water heater gives off an immense amount of heat as well. Be careful not to store anything too close to your water heater to prevent fires.

7. Don’t pour fats, coffee grinds or cooking oils into your drains.

These waste materials can build up in your pipes, or in sewer pipes, causing blockages, backups, and sewer overflows. A little mindfulness can save you a lot of money over the life of your home.

Jersey Plumbing Service
PO Box 7371
Hillsborough, NJ 08844
Click to Email Us
Fax: 1-908-647-1517

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