Ask the Plumber's Wife ?

Yes, I am the Plumber's Wife. And, I will be offering a variety of tips to help you out with your home plumbing.

island plumbing and mechanical emergency plumbing

My plumber told me I need a dye test. What is that?

dye test will determine if stormwater is entering the sanitary sewer system. … Dye testing involves placing a non-staining water soluble dye tablet in the drain or downspout of your property and flushing it with water. The area is then examined for the appearance of traces of dyed water.Sanitary sewers are designed to accept wastewater from home drains, but not rainwater from rain storms. Sanitary sewers can easily be overwhelmed by sudden floods of rainwater and water runoff from lawns and sprinklers. Combined sewers can accept wastewater from the home as well as water from lawn drains and other sources of water runoff.

plumber in victoria

My son takes 2 showers a day. I thought that was too much. My water and heating bills are higher than I want. We agreed that he take only one now. What is your opinion as a plumber?

Good question. Here are points to consider: cleanliness, how long to shower, proper water temperature, post-workout routine, insomnia after late showers, environmental concerns, and even baths.

Not surprisingly, yes you will use more power and your water bill will be higher. Also, it all starts with water. An important consideration is the quality of water and its chlorine content, which can be an irritant. If you have allergies or sensitive skin, or are concerned about the quality of your water, you may want to have it tested.

If you live in an apartment or condo, off-peak hours fit your schedule, that can be a good option. Midday, for instance, might provide you with a hotter shower and more dependable water pressure.

Day, night, or anytime, your daily shower is an important ritual. Weigh your own pros and cons, but don’t forget the plumber’s perspective!

emergency plumbing

Are you open for business if I have a plumbing problem?

Yes, and our hearts go to everyone affected, and we strongly encourage our whole community to take the extra precautions necessary to safeguard their own health, as well as that of those around them. 

Our hearts go to everyone affected, and we strongly encourage our whole community to take the extra precautions necessary to safeguard their own health, as well as that of those around them. 

We are open for business and will take care to honour the 2 metre rule of social distancing. So if you have a plumbing problem please call us and we will make the necessary arrangements to keep you and your family safe and also solve your plumbing problem.

island plumbing and mechanical

Hi, I have just discovered wet spots on my carpet, what is causing this?

Ignore a wet spot on the carpet at your peril. A wet spot on a wall, ceiling, or floor can indicate a broken pipe in the vicinity, therefore it’s imperative that you resolve it as quickly as possible. Most people won’t be inclined to start tearing things apart in order to find the source of a wet spot, so calling a plumber is the most logical move in such cases. A licensed plumber can use various methods to track down the source and take steps to fix it, all with minimal damage to your house.

“Why Am I Running Out of Hot Water in My Shower?”

When it comes to the big list of homeowner annoyances, not having continuous hot water in the shower is often right at the top of the list.

There are all kinds of reasons that the hot water supply in a house may not be lasting as long as it should. In many instances, the water heater turns out to be the culprit because the heating element is going out or there is a sediment build-up inside the water heater that is displacing the amount of water that can come into the tank.

In this case, however, as it turned out, it actually wasn’t the water heater. It also wasn’t the water pressure itself. Both had checked out fine.

After ruling out the obvious, we then began looking at the less obvious. This included the water fixture itself, which upon inspection initially – seemed to be operating exactly the way it should.

We then continued testing the shower as well as the other fixtures in the house until we were finally able to replicate the symptom.

The cause was indeed coming from the shower fixture or more precisely – the shower valve (a pressure balancing type) inside.

We discovered that the internal mechanism that assures the water temperature stays consistent (a scald prevention system) was getting stuck on occasion, but not always.

That is why the problem didn’t present itself during our initial examination. When this did happen though, the pressure differential in the valve would cause more cold water to mix in with the hot water, which in turn, was causing the temperature to drop too suddenly.

Fortunately, we had the replacement cartridge on the van and we were able to replace the faulty part the very same day. The problem was eliminated and the customer was very happy to know his hot water issues were over.

How do I fix my wobbly toilet?

A wobbly toilet is the result of a problem that can be found somewhere in the base of the toilet, specifically the two bolts and the wax seal underneath. The plumbing for this fixture is neatly housed and kept hidden underneath the ceramic base, so the first order of business will to be to remove the fixture. Before removing or tampering with any plumbing fixture, you want to turn off the shut off valve so as to cut off the water from being provided to the fixture.

Take a look at the condition of the wax seal, does it look worn and weathered, or is it in pretty good shape? A deteriorated wax seal could further cause problems for the plumbing of your toilet. Next, remove the wax seal to expose the closet flange underneath. The closet flange is the metal ring that should properly screwed into the floor just below the wax seal. The flange is what connects the plumbing to the toilet at the floor of the house. If there is any problem with the security of the flange to the floor, the toilet will also be affected.

Another way this connection can be affected is if the floor itself is damaged. For example, the flange may be secured to the floor, however, the floorboard has sunken down or broken entirely, meaning the toilet does not have the support it needs to rest flush and keep sturdy. In the event your floor is creating a problem, you can use shims to help create support where the previous support has failed. Once you have singled out that the lack of support of the floor is the problem, you replace the was ring, the bolts, the toilet itself, and then the closet bolts. Once the toilet is secured properly, you can drive the shims under the base of the toilet using a level to determine the correct amount of shim needed to hold the toilet up flush with the rest of the floor.

Your toilet will now be secure and there will be no leaks.

My son insists that it is OK to pour hot oil down the kitchen sink. What is your opinion? 

 

Pouring hot oil down the drain might not seem like a big deal in the moment, but even the occasional grease disposal shortcut can add up over time and result in a whopping plumbing bill.

Most hot oils don’t stay in liquid form once they’ve cooled.

Many oils, including butter, coconut oil, bacon fat or Crisco vegetable shortening, are in a liquid state when warm, but in a solid state at room temperature.

The oil, plus any food particles and debris that get washed down the drain, will congeal and stick around (pun intended) ― typically just behind where the pipe makes a U-bend ― the trap ― under the sink. An old wives’ tale will tell you to run hot water and dish soap down the sink after you pour oil down the drain, claiming to help the oil travel down the pipes before it thickens or solidifies ― but this isn’t as effective a strategy as you might think.

What do do?

Start by pouring one cup of baking soda down your drain and chase it with a mixture of one cup vinegar and one cup water. Plug your drain for five to 10 minutes, then finish things off with another pot of boiling water.

I just bought and installed a new sink. Whats is the best way to keep it looking new?

Yes there sure is. I have a list of things to care for:

  • Clean and disinfect sinks and drains regularly
  • Clean faucets and aerators regularly
  • Keep drains clear and unclogged
  • Use cold water for drinking and preparing food
  • Replace old plumbing and install certified “lead free” fixtures
  • Flush cold water taps after household plumbing work or when the water hasn’t been used for several days
  • Drain and flush your hot water heater annually
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the water heater, filters, treatment devices, softeners and any other products attached to the water system
  • Do not connect hoses or other devices intended for non-drinking purposes to household drinking water faucets
  • Keep hazardous chemicals and unsanitary materials away from drinking water faucets

 

I would like to know if changing to a tankless hot water heater can save me money ?

 

Yes, you can save money and here’s how. A tankless hot water heater can help you achieve increased energy savings of up to 50% per month compared to a conventional water heater. 

A conventional hot water heater will only last around 12 years. A tankless hot water heater, in comparison, is designed to last for more than 20 years — nearly twice the lifespan. That’s significantly longer to enjoy increased energy efficiency and monthly savings. For advice and a quote call me at 250-721-1116.

 

I was wondering why my basement floor is suddenly wet? Is this a plumbing problem? And what can I do to get it dry? Thank you very much Mary W.

This could be what is called a slab leak. The slab of your home is actually the concrete foundation that your house sits on. Beneath this surface is a network of copper pipes. These pipes can fail over time in hot or cold water lines, or in drain lines from any household appliance that requires water or draining.

These types of leaks are not visible. Often they can develop and worsen over time. Besides the potential for foundation collapse, termites can move into your house, or molds can develop and damage your house.

To prevent damage to your foundation, which can lead to your house collapsing, it’s important to hire plumbers who have experience with leak detection. Whether you suspect you have a slab leak in your home, or your house is over thirty years old, please book a slab leak detection visit with us today.

Hi, I am planning a winter holiday, is there anything I should do regarding plumbing? I do not want to come back with a flood. Thanks, R.

Yes, there a 4 things that should be done:

  1. Change the setting on the water heater – There is no need to heat water in an empty home. A lot of homeowners don’t realize their water heater may have a vacation mode for this very purpose. Prior to leaving, adjust the water heater to vacation mode. If the water heater does not have a vacation mode, turn the temperature down. This will save a significant amount of money on utility bills.
  2. Turn off the water while you’re away – The last thing you want is to come home to a high bill due to a leak, or worse, flooding. If there’s an emergency water shutoff valve in a convenient location, that can be used to turn off the water supply. If not, special tools can be inexpensively purchased and used to shut the water off at the water meter, usually in the yard close to the road. The last thing anyone needs is a water pipe leaking dozens or hundreds of gallons of water every day while they’re away.
  3. Clean garbage disposals – Garbage disposals can be a great tool for cleaning up. They can also store nasty odors and bits of food that attract pests. Homemade remedies to flush this out can include warm water, vinegar and/or baking soda. Flushing the garbage disposal before departure means no smelly surprises are waiting for your return.
  4. Treat stagnant water in toilet – Water left inactive in the toilet can produce a foul odor and a difficult to remove ring that forms around the toilet bowl. To prevent this, place ½ cup of bleach in the toilet bowl just before leaving home.

Can Boiling Water Unclog A Drain?

Boiling water can be useful for certain kinds of clogs, but the results are — at best — hit and miss. Plus, there are risks associated with pouring boiling water down a drain, especially if you have PVC pipes; boiling water can soften and even melt the PVC joints! Also, there’s the possibility that the boiling water treatment will just push the clog deeper into your pipes, meaning the oil or grease or hair (or some dastardly combination of all three) is now more difficult to reach and remove. How did this myth get started? Like all myths, its origins are murky — much like that boiling water you’ve just poured into your clogged drain. (It’s now just sitting there cooling in the drain, waiting for you to use a more successful method to clear the problem.) Most of the time, the myth of using boiling water to unclog a slow drain started because somebody utilized that method, appeared to achieve results and passed the advice on to friends and family members. It’s certainly possible; boiling water can melt or loosen the gunk holding the clog together. But it’s not always effective — nor is the home remedy of mixing vinegar with baking soda and pouring that concoction down the drain. It doesn’t hurt to try these methods, however, so go ahead and see what happens! (Remember, though: That vinegar-baking-soda mix is gonna fizz!) However, there are better ways to deal with a clogged pipe and to get down to the business of drain cleaning, no matter how many times your friends and/or family have used the boiled water trick.

 Q: How do I fix a wobbly toilet bowl?  

Toilets wobble when they aren’t held securely to the floor, and if you let the wobble persist, they can leak and give you more serious problems. More often than not, the wobble is caused by loose toilet bolts, but the flange may also be responsible. It may be corroded, broken or set too high. Moreover, the person who installed the toilet may have used a wax ring that is too thick. None of these conditions is very difficult to correct, but if the toilet is wobbling because the subfloor is soft, the repair gets more complicated.

Call us at 250-721-1116. We can help.

 Q: If I purchase faucets to install in my home, what brand should I choose?

We recommend Delta or Moen faucets; they are by far the easiest to get parts for. Kohler, American Standard, Gerber, Chicago, Symmons, Brizo, and Grohe are also good quality products, but a bit harder to get parts for.

“Big box” home centers do sell Delta and Moen, but BE CAREFUL when purchasing there. Delta and Moen sometimes put together faucet packages for these stores which have non-professional grade components. If you’re buying a Delta faucet at these stores, make sure the exact faucet model # you are purchasing appears in the Delta full-line catalog. If it does not, you’re not getting a professional grade product. Same goes for Moen.

If you’re shopping in a home center for a more stylish faucet (especially those with special finishes like nickel or bronze) it can be very tempting to buy an off-brand faucet that looks just like the Delta or Moen but costs 50% to 75% less. DON’T DO IT! The quality level of these fixtures is very low. They have completely different internal workings. They often start dripping very soon after installation. They are difficult if not impossible to get parts for. Their finish becomes worn or tarnished easily. Pay the extra and get a good faucet.

If you are planning to hire a professional plumbing company to install your faucet, it is usually wise to purchase it from that company. That way, if there are problems with your faucet during the warranty period (usually 1 year) they will come back and repair it free of charge.

Call Island Plumbing & Mechanical at 250-721-1116. We can help you.

 Q: The Drain Pipes Under the Sink Keeps Coming Loose. I have tightened it up a few times and it still works loose. What can you suggest please?


A. A common mistake is to mix PVC washers and nuts with metal washers and nuts. It is best to keep these consistent. The plastic washers (ferrules) go with the plastic pipe and washers. The thicker side faces the nut and the thinner side the “cup”. The same goes for metal, the metal pipe uses metal nuts and square cut rubber washers. Lastly, make sure to fit the pipes down into the next pipe as deeply as deep as possible.

Call Island Plumbing & Mechanical at 250-721-1116. We can help you.

 Q: Hi I have a plumbing problem; sludge in the bathtub. What do I do ?”

I live in a condominium complex. Every couple of days for the last two years, a foul-smelling sludge bubbles up into my bathtub, coating it in a layer of filth. Someone from the maintenance department told me that it would be almost impossible to fix because a contractor probably misconnected a pipe while renovating my neighbour’s bathroom a few years ago. Since this appears to be a chronic problem, could I request a reduction in my monthly maintenance charge?

A backup like the one you described is usually caused by either a blockage in the plumbing line or a problem with the way a pipe was configured. Blocked pipes can be snaked, and incorrectly installed ones can be repaired
 

Take date- and time-stamped pictures of the sludge. Include them in a letter to the managing agent and the board, sent by certified mail, explaining the problem and the maintenance department’s unhelpful response. Demand that they fix it.

Call Island Plumbing & Mechanical at 250-721-1116. We can help you.

 Q: What does it mean “To Have My Drain to Be Professionally Cleaned ?”

  At some point in your time as a homeowner, it’s likely that your drain will become clogged and will require a professional to scope out the problem. You may occasionally be able to get away with a DIY quick fix, but what does it take to warrant bringing in a pro for help? Below are a few instances where it would be prudent to call your Island Plumbing & Mechanical expert the next time you experience a significant change in your drain.

Clogged Drain Causes

Let’s talk about the gross blockages that can accumulate in our drains. In our bathroom sinks, the most likely culprit for clogs is a large amount of hair preventing water from draining appropriately. Blockages can also be caused by soap scum, various other particles, and on the larger scale, build up from hard water if your home is one of the many affected by it. Toilet paper and other debris also can create massive blockages in your drainage line. In the kitchen, food, grease and fats are added clog-causing agents. There are any number of clog possibilities looming in your pipes, which is reason enough to have a professional inspect your system to ensure a greater issue isn’t at play.
 

How Island Plumbing & Mechanical Helps

Being experienced plumbing specialists we have seen a vast assortment of individual drain problems and figured out how to properly remedy them. After inspecting your clogged drain, if it is found to be a more substantial problem than a simple clog, we will employ all of the necessary tools to solve the issue in a timely, responsible, and cost-effective manner. You’ll be so relieved that you left it to the pros this time, and there will likely be significant longevity before you have a drain issue like this again.

Not only do we offer general, scheduled plumbing services, we also provide 24/7 emergency plumbing services when the unexpected happens. Clogged drains are only scratching the surface of our abilities; call us at 250-721-1116

 Q: How do I Adjust Water Heater Temperature?

   Not happy with your thermometer reading? Changing your water heater temperature is easy.

Most households rely on an electric water tank. These have heating coils on both the top and bottom of the tank. You’ll need to adjust both of these to achieve the desired temperature.

If you’re lucky, your hot water tank will have a temperature dial on its exterior. These usually display notches, not numbers. Turn it a notch to the left or right, depending on your desired adjustment.

Most water heaters will require you to take out the screwdriver. To be safe, it’s always suggested you turn off the power to your water heater beforehand.

You will find cover panels on the upper and lower section of the tank. Remove these with a screwdriver to reveal the temperature dials.

After making the change, give your heater at least three hours to adjust to its new setting. Then, just as before, run the water from a tap and check the temperature.

There’s no doubt that water heaters can be complicated. If you need help adjusting your water heater temperature, you should rely on a professional to get the job done.

And water heaters don’t last forever. Strange noises, discoloured water, or irregular temperatures are all good signs that you need your water heater serviced.

If you live in the Greater Victoria area, contact us for a free quote today.

 Q: How do I know if my house is leaking water?

   One of the first signs of water trouble is your water bill. Try to remember what your bill is every time it comes in the mail. If you see an noticeable increase from one bill to the next, you may be leaking water somewhere.

Other signs to look for are:

Puddles outside your home in your yard
The sound of running water when no faucets are open, no toilets are flushing, and no appliances are on.

The first thing you want to do is try and figure out where the leak is coming from. Flush toilets, run faucets and listen for excessive running water after they’re turned off. Go for a walk around your house and inspect the ground. Look for wet spots in the grass.

Next, you’ll want to call Island Plumbing & Mechanical. We’re the ones who will be able to tell you what’s up. We will be able to not only locate the leak, but also give you an estimate for fixing it.

 Q:  Hi , I would like to know if there is a way I can use “Alexa” to check up on my plumbing please?

   Yes there sure is. In fact, there is an app you can use for Alexa, Apple Homekit and Google Assistant. It is called “Flo” by Moen. Here is how it works:

Flo by Moen, a game-changing smart home water monitoring and leak detection system that enables homeowners to control their home’s water from their smartphones. It calculates water pressure, flow rate and temperature within the home’s water supply system while using AI to differentiate normal water use from abnormal use. This enables the device to monitor and help detect water leaks and other vulnerabilities

The Flo by Moen app provides users with real-time information about their home’s water consumption habits and alerts to any abnormalities. Within the app, users can control how the system provides alerts and respond to potential issues. Alerts may be sent to users through push notifications, via email, or by text or phone call. The user also can turn off their water directly from the app.

water leaks

 Q:  My neighbour has an app on their phone to detect leaks. What is a leak detector?

   Leak detectors send notifications right to your phone and sound out an audible alarm whenever there is water present where it shouldn’t be.

Units also include freeze detection, such as the Honeywell Lyric Wi-Fi Water Leak and Freeze Detector. It will even alert you to the freezing that occurs before a pipe bursts—particularly helpful for water supply pipes located in wine cellars or unheated basements.

Despite our best efforts, leaks happen. But if you catch them early enough, you can turn off the water and make fixes before the accumulated water causes structural damage—or worse, leads to mold and mildew growth. Installing a leak detector under sinks and near a sump pump, washer, or water heater will give you a heads-up when a leak occurs.

Call Roland at Island Plumbing & Mechanical for more information. 250-721-1116

 

rebates and offers
rebates and offers
rebates and offers
rebates and offers
rebates and offers
rebates and offers

 Q: Is Fortis offering new incentives and if so what are they ?

Yes, Fortis is offering rebates for the Fall & Winter. Here are the latest offers:

  1. Upgrade to a qualifying natural gas ENERGY STAR® water heater and you could get rebates from $200 to $1,000.
  2. Annual servicing helps maintain the life expectancy of your natural gas appliances and also ensures they’re operating safely and efficiently. Now you could qualify for rebates of up to $135* when you have your natural gas furnace or boiler, tankless water heater and fireplace(s) serviced. And for applying online, we’ll give you a $10 bonus. But hurry, as the program ends November 30, 2019. 
  3. Get up to $1,700 in rebates when you connect to natural gas and replace your wood stove, oil or propane space heating system with an eligible ENERGY STAR® high-efficiency natural gas furnace, boiler or combination heating and hot water system. By doing so, you’ll improve the comfort of your home and save money on heating costs, plus you could get an additional rebate of up to $1,000 if you install an eligible natural gas high-efficiency water heater, for a total rebate of up to $2,700.
  4. Natural gas water heater rebates 
    For more information on Fortis rebates give us a call at: 250-721-1116
bathroom

 Q: My husband and I are renovating our home. We are looking for a modern look. Could you please tell us what the trends are in plumbing ?

I have had a few clients ask this question and will show you the latest trends.

1. Black Bathrooms – now that makes a statement. Black bathrooms are hitting the scene this year from walls, to vanities, sinks and fixtures.

2. Marble – Marble is hot in 2019. Countertops, floors or walls. Marble is a great focal point regardless of how you use it.

3. Statement Art – Adding a bold piece of art is trending this year. Like other rooms in your house, adding art will change the feel of the space and a
good way to add some fresh colour.

4. Wallpaper – Powder rooms are coming alive with wall paper. The bigger the pattern the better.

5. Concrete – Although thought of as cold and dismal, concrete is an exciting choice for 2019. Concrete can be used in sink, countertops, walls or
floors. Mix it with other natural elements for a great new feel.

6. Exposed Plumbing – what was once a designers dream is back again. No longer are we hiding all the hardware. Adding exposed hardware to a modern
bathroom gives it a clean minimalist feel.

electric water heaters
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tankless water heater
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soggy lawn
drain

 Q: How Do I Choose the Right Water Heater Size?

 We see it all the time in this industry: a homeowner needs a water heater replacement, so they order one from a big box company…and that’s where the problems start.

The water heater shows up, and it’s too big for their closet, attic, or basement. They wind up paying far more than they otherwise would have just to get their pipes resized, walls knocked out, and drywall cut out to make room! In the end, the result is always the same: they wind up with a slapdash job and a huge bill.

Getting your water heater replaced always seems like a hassle, and many people just want to be done with it as soon as they can. However, as with all hassles in life, doing the process right will save you precious time and money. Here’s how:

  1. Never Buy From a Big Box Company – Home Depot or Lowe’s may quote you the lowest price on a water heater, but what that price tag doesn’t show you is all of the extra cost you’ll wind up with from the installation. Call your local plumber instead! A licensed professional will take the time to take measurements and do the job right the first time around.
  2. Always Demand Upfront Pricing – Pay for the appliance and the installation from the same professionals to ensure you’re getting the right product at the right price. Our professionals always offer upfront pricing, which means the number on your estimate is guaranteed to be the same as the price on your bottom line. It’s the only honest way to do business.
  3. Know Your Regulations – In April of 2015, new water heater regulations went into effect for water heater manufacturers. The new laws require all water heaters to have more insulation so they waste less energy. The additional installation makes the new models about 2 inches taller and wider, sometimes more. If your water heater needs to fit through a tight attic access or into a tiny utility room, ask one of our plumbers for a consultation before you buy.
  4. Consider Switching to Tankless – The homeowners who order from big box companies are often unaware of all the options at their disposal. One space-saving alternative to conventional water heating is to go tankless. Tankless water heaters save energy and room by heating water on-demand instead of in a storage tank. These appliances are about the size of a carry-on bag, and they can be installed on just about any interior wall!
 

 Q: What is a high efficiency toilet?

If you have no idea what a high-efficiency toilet is, then you have come to the right place. Some toilets can take more than one flush to work properly. This is certainly not one of the most efficient things to have. Today, there are many high-efficiency toilet models out there.

The main purpose of high-efficiency toilets is to reduce the amount of water that is used in every flush. Today, some of the best high-efficiency toilets can save up to 20% of the water that normal toilets use.

These types of toilets, are also very efficient, because they do not make as much noise as normal toilets do when flushing.

 High-efficiency toilets are also cleaner than normal toilets are because they flush differently. They help to keep the bowl less contaminated than other toilets do. The method for getting rid of waste is also a lot different in high-efficiency toilets. The trap ways of these modern toilets are now glazed, which helps to optimize how the waste flows through the passage.

High-efficiency toilets, also come with a different flushing system or buttons. These systems allow you to select the right amount of water to use when flushing. They also allow you to have a dual flushing service, which makes it simple to keep your toilet clean at all times.

According to some experts, high-efficiency toilets can help you save up to 30,000 litres of water per year! High-efficiency toilets are without a doubt the way of the future. 

 Q: My hot water heater is sweating, what does that mean?

 A water heater that’s sweating or “weeping” is often a sign of a slow but steady leak. When you go near the water heater you will see that the ground is a little damp.

Small leaks come from cracks in piping or the casing and will eventually lead to bigger issues. 

Other danger signs to watch for include:

  • Rusty spots on your water heater or the surrounding piping
  • Corrosion on the water heater
  • An unusually large pool of water in the drip pan or nearby

Call your plumber if you notice any of these signs. When you call a plumber for this type of inspection, they should also do a thorough check for gas leaks or other electrical problems. 

Professionals can resolve these concerns and prevent major headaches if you know when to call a plumber.

 Q: My water bill is more this time. What should I do?

Repair Leaks  

Repair drips and leaks as soon as you become aware of it, because a leaking toilet can waste 90,000 gallons of water a month, while a dripping faucet can lose approximately 20 gallons a day.

Install Water-Saving Fixtures

Low-flow, dual-flush toilets, water-efficient appliances and low-flow showerheads can all help save plenty of water (and money, in the process). In the typical household, low-flow showerheads and faucets can save an estimated 45 gallons of water per day. A low-flow toilet could potentially save up to 80 gallons a day.

Outdoor Watering

Research to learn about xeriscaping, a gardening method that uses low-water and native plants. For lawns & garden water during the coolest part of the day or night to minimize evaporation.

 Q: My toilet is leaking at the base. What should I do?

  It sounds as if the toilet will need to be pulled up and a new wax ring installed. I would first make sure nothing is leaking around the supply valve and tubes? The tank to bowl nuts and washers should be checked as well.

 Q: Why are patches of my lawn a lush green colour?

  To put it simply, the nutrients in the sewage feeds plants, shrubs and trees just as fertilizer would. If you have one or more patches of lush greenery it’s a sign that your sewer pipe is damaged. The reason you’re not seeing pooling water might be because the pipe is located deep below the ground. Therefore, the water doesn’t rise all the way to the surface.

 Q: What can I do for a slow drain ?

  This is a common occurrence in every home. Here is a simple solution using basic items from your home. When boiling water alone won’t clear a sink, you can try using vinegar and baking soda. Start by pouring half a box of baking soda down the drain. Don’t add any water. Next, pour half a cup of vinegar down the sink and then stop up the drain with a metal stopper or rags; to contain the “volcano” reaction often seen in school projects. Wait 30 minutes before pouring boiling water down the drain. It’s safe, cheap and good for the environment!

 Q: What causes a faucet to leak?

  Pipe corrosion, defective gaskets, and mineral deposits are all possible causes, and there are plenty more. Ignoring a problem with a dripping faucet in your home will make a simple repair become a major repair over time. The most common problems are worn out seals, loose fittings and broken parts. Take care of the problem now to avoid expensive repairs. If you cannot solve the problem on your own call the professionals at Island Plumbing so we can provide you with quick and thorough repairs.

 

 Q: What do I do for frozen water pipes?

  No homes in Victoria are immune to frozen water pipes. If this happens to your home, the first thing you want to do is mitigate the potential for water damage. Shut off the water main leading into the home or business in order to reduce pressure on frozen pipes and minimize flooding if the pipes burst. If the frozen pipe is exposed and visible, use a hair dryer to thaw the ice blockage. DO NOT use an open flame in an attempt to thaw the blockage. If the frozen pipes are not visible, call a plumber, they have the professional pipe-thawing equipment to quickly fix frozen water pipes. If you ever notice slower water flow in your home or business and think that you might have frozen pipes, you should call a plumber immediately. In most cases, frozen pipes can be repaired before any long-term damage occurs.

Q: What is the best way to prevent clogged pipes?

 Clogs are one of the most common plumbing problems, and when it comes to a shower or sink drain, it can become gross and messy thanks to hair and soap residue. Avoiding the icky is as simple as using a basket strainer. This will help prevent a time-consuming and unpleasant task in the future.

Q: I hear a leak in the walls when my daughter takes a shower. I tried to locate it but I can’t seem to find the cause. What could it be?

During the fall/winter, it is common for the hot water lines tend to expand (which may sound as if there is a leak somewhere).  If you do still feel that there is a leak, you may want to purchase a cheap moisture reader to see if there is any dampness within the walls.  Or you can contact a certified plumber to confirm whether there is a leak. 

clogged drains
water heater
the plumber's wife
soggy lawn
frozen pipes

 Q: How do I tell if something is in my drain?

 Clogged drains are one of the most common plumbing issues homeowners face. It’s the cause of 90% of after hours emergency plumbing calls. It usually takes a while for buildup inside the pipes to turn into a major clog, but if you’re observant, you may spot some symptoms that indicate a clog soon enough to deal with it before it causes a messy problem. When you suspect a sewer drain clog, have it checked and repaired by a professional as soon as possible.

Prevention is better than cure, so avoid putting anything inappropriate down the drains, and schedule an annual power drain cleaning with Island Plumbing & Mechanical.

One of the first things you will notice when your drain is blocked, is that you bath tub, sink, shower and toilet drain slower than usual. When the blockage is very bad, it may not drain at all. In most cases, when only one fixture drains slowly, that’s usually the one with the issue. If all the fixtures drain slowly, you probably have a main drain blockage.

Your plumbing will likely sound different too. You may hear gurgling sounds when you flush the toilet and similar sounds may come from the pipes, plug holes and drains. This gurgling sound is caused by the air trapped inside the pipes. 

A wet lawn with plants growing near the sewer line can also indicate a blocked sewer. If a puddle appears on your lawn, it is a great idea to call in a professional plumber. Roots from trees and plants around the sewer line can cause severe damage to your underground water lines and sewers. 

Sometimes, debris inside the drains will begin to rot, causing a foul odour. It’s possible that you will smell the rot before any of the other symptoms appear. That is usually a good time to call the professional plumbers to take a look. Dealing with a plumbing problem as soon as you’re aware of it is a great way to avoid high repair costs and damage to your property.

Regular drain cleaning is a great way to prevent having to deal with the mess of clogged and overflowing drains. Contact us for our powerful hydro jetting service, which will remove tree roots and clogs and restore your drains to optimal functioning.

 
 

 Q: My hot water heater is sweating, what does that mean?

 A water heater that’s sweating or “weeping” is often a sign of a slow but steady leak. When you go near the water heater you will see that the ground is a little damp.

Small leaks come from cracks in piping or the casing and will eventually lead to bigger issues. 

Other danger signs to watch for include:

  • Rusty spots on your water heater or the surrounding piping
  • Corrosion on the water heater
  • An unusually large pool of water in the drip pan or nearby

Call your plumber if you notice any of these signs. When you call a plumber for this type of inspection, they should also do a thorough check for gas leaks or other electrical problems. 

Professionals can resolve these concerns and prevent major headaches if you know when to call a plumber.

 Q: My water bill is more this time. What should I do?

Repair Leaks  

Repair drips and leaks as soon as you become aware of it, because a leaking toilet can waste 90,000 gallons of water a month, while a dripping faucet can lose approximately 20 gallons a day.

Install Water-Saving Fixtures

Low-flow, dual-flush toilets, water-efficient appliances and low-flow showerheads can all help save plenty of water (and money, in the process). In the typical household, low-flow showerheads and faucets can save an estimated 45 gallons of water per day. A low-flow toilet could potentially save up to 80 gallons a day.

Outdoor Watering

Research to learn about xeriscaping, a gardening method that uses low-water and native plants. For lawns & garden water during the coolest part of the day or night to minimize evaporation.

 Q: My toilet is leaking at the base. What should I do?

  It sounds as if the toilet will need to be pulled up and a new wax ring installed. I would first make sure nothing is leaking around the supply valve and tubes? The tank to bowl nuts and washers should be checked as well.

 Q: Why are patches of my lawn a lush green colour?

  To put it simply, the nutrients in the sewage feeds plants, shrubs and trees just as fertilizer would. If you have one or more patches of lush greenery it’s a sign that your sewer pipe is damaged. The reason you’re not seeing pooling water might be because the pipe is located deep below the ground. Therefore, the water doesn’t rise all the way to the surface.

 Q: What can I do for a slow drain ?

  This is a common occurrence in every home. Here is a simple solution using basic items from your home. When boiling water alone won’t clear a sink, you can try using vinegar and baking soda. Start by pouring half a box of baking soda down the drain. Don’t add any water. Next, pour half a cup of vinegar down the sink and then stop up the drain with a metal stopper or rags; to contain the “volcano” reaction often seen in school projects. Wait 30 minutes before pouring boiling water down the drain. It’s safe, cheap and good for the environment!

 Q: What causes a faucet to leak?

  Pipe corrosion, defective gaskets, and mineral deposits are all possible causes, and there are plenty more. Ignoring a problem with a dripping faucet in your home will make a simple repair become a major repair over time. The most common problems are worn out seals, loose fittings and broken parts. Take care of the problem now to avoid expensive repairs. If you cannot solve the problem on your own call the professionals at Island Plumbing so we can provide you with quick and thorough repairs.

 

 Q: What do I do for frozen water pipes?

  No homes in Victoria are immune to frozen water pipes. If this happens to your home, the first thing you want to do is mitigate the potential for water damage. Shut off the water main leading into the home or business in order to reduce pressure on frozen pipes and minimize flooding if the pipes burst. If the frozen pipe is exposed and visible, use a hair dryer to thaw the ice blockage. DO NOT use an open flame in an attempt to thaw the blockage. If the frozen pipes are not visible, call a plumber, they have the professional pipe-thawing equipment to quickly fix frozen water pipes. If you ever notice slower water flow in your home or business and think that you might have frozen pipes, you should call a plumber immediately. In most cases, frozen pipes can be repaired before any long-term damage occurs.

Q: What is the best way to prevent clogged pipes?

 Clogs are one of the most common plumbing problems, and when it comes to a shower or sink drain, it can become gross and messy thanks to hair and soap residue. Avoiding the icky is as simple as using a basket strainer. This will help prevent a time-consuming and unpleasant task in the future.

Q: I hear a leak in the walls when my daughter takes a shower. I tried to locate it but I can’t seem to find the cause. What could it be?

During the fall/winter, it is common for the hot water lines tend to expand (which may sound as if there is a leak somewhere).  If you do still feel that there is a leak, you may want to purchase a cheap moisture reader to see if there is any dampness within the walls.  Or you can contact a certified plumber to confirm whether there is a leak.