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Hard Water Signs to Look for in Your Home or Business

Hard Water Signs to Look for in Your Home or Business

In the United States, almost 90 percent of residences have hard water. While most people have heard the term “hard water,” many Americans don’t know which signs they should be on the look out for in their homes. Homes which have hard water can treat the water to prevent the need to have costly repairs to their plumbing.  What is Hard Water? Hard water is water that has high levels of dissolved minerals. Some of the most common minerals found in hard water are calcium and magnesium carbonates. Water picks up these minerals when it passes through limestone and chalk deposits. While hard water is not harmful to people, in fact, some people believe it may have health benefits; these additional minerals aren’t good for machinery in a home or business. Five Signs of You May Have Hard Water If you notice any of these five signs, you should test your water to see if it is hard: Reduced water pressure or water flow rate. In as little as 18 months, lime scale can clog the shower faucets in your home enough to reduce the flow of water to just one-quarter of the original rate. Look at the holes on your shower head for any indication they are blocked. You may also run your finger around the inside of your water faucet to check for a white grit which is caused by limescale. Dry, scratchy skin and clothing. If you recently moved and you notice your skin feels rougher or itch more often, it may be due to hard water. The high levels of minerals in hard water are difficult to thoroughly rinse away. These minerals can remain on your clothes or skin and cause irritation. Low level of soap suds. Hard water...
How Drain Cleaning Can Prevent Plumbing Problems

How Drain Cleaning Can Prevent Plumbing Problems

Your plumbing system undergoes a significant amount of activity throughout the day. From washing clothes and dishes to taking showers, a lot of water finds its way down the plumbing drain. But water is not the only thing. Food, chemicals and contaminants all go down the drain with the water. Over time, these substances build up and cause blockage and deterioration inside the pipes. Regular drain cleanings are the solution to help avoid any unwanted blockage or backup in your plumbing. Caring for Your Plumbing System Like all other components in your home, your plumbing system requires ongoing maintenance and care to operate at peak performance year after year. The best action you can take is to hire a professional plumbing technician to come in and perform a comprehensive inspection of all parts. A plumber can make the necessary repairs and have your plumbing system up and running like new. Preventative Maintenance: Cleaning Your Drain Plumbing repairs can be expensive, which is why preventative maintenance is essential. Caring for the pipes and all other components begins by keeping the drain line clean and clear of blockage and debris. Below is a list of common items that can get caught inside your drain (whether it’s inside or outside your home) and need to be removed on a regular basis. Lime Scale. Lime scale occurs as a result of hard water exposure over a long period. Hard water contains significant levels of calcium and magnesium. The particles from these two substances build up over time and inhibit water flow. Once hardened, it is difficult to remove lime scale from a pipe....
4 Signs Your Commercial Drain Needs Repaired

4 Signs Your Commercial Drain Needs Repaired

As a company owner, you rely on all the systems in your commercial property to operate properly so that you can conduct your business. One of the most important systems in your building is the plumbing. When the system backs up, it can affect your employees and your clients. Below are four signs that your commercial drain may need to be repaired or unblocked. If you experience any of these symptoms, then contact a Crawford Mechanical Services plumbing specialist today. Bellying Bellies are low spots within your sewer line. When this occurs, paper and solids can settle in the low spot and cause what is known as a “soft blockage.” This is a common problem with sewer lines that use PVC pipe, but it can be easily fixed by a plumber. The Drain is Backed Up The most obvious sign that there is something wrong with the drain is that the water is backed up and won’t flush. There could be numerous reasons for this that range from tree root penetration to substance buildup. In a commercial building, drain backup can lead to flooding quickly since multiple people are using the plumbing system throughout the day. Flooding If you own a building that has multiple floors, and you notice water spots or worse, running water anywhere in the building, then it’s a safe bet that there is damage somewhere in the drain lines. The damage can be caused by pipes that are corroded, punctured or have loose connections. If you notice that water is present in areas where it shouldn’t be, then you need to hire a certified plumber to fix the problem immediately. Leaky drains...
What Might Be Causing Your Yard Leaks?

What Might Be Causing Your Yard Leaks?

If your yard suddenly becomes waterlogged or soggy with no logical reason, it is likely that your plumbing has sprung a leak. Leaks that occur in the summer may cause standing water, sunken areas or even a patch of lush green grass that seems to grow faster than the surrounding lawn. Occasionally, you may even notice a jet or spray of water springing from the ground. Uncovering the source of your yard leak may be easier than you think. Signs of Yard Leaks Standing water and soggy soil are obvious signs of yard leaks, but there are more subtle signs to look for too. High water bill. This may be one of the first signs you notice as it may take a while for the soil to become saturated enough to show signs of waterlogging or soggy soil. Decrease in water pressure. You may notice the water pressure in your home isn’t as strong as it used to be as water constantly seeps out into your yard. Sounds of running water. If you have a leak in the yard, you may hear running water in your pipes inside your home as they work to supply water to the outside source. What Causes Yard Leaks? Yard leaks occur when the plumbing to outside sources breaks or springs a leak. The three most common sources are: Main Water Line Break Sewer Line Break Irrigation System Break How Do You Find the Source? To determine the source of your yard leak, you will need to do a little detective work. The first step is to determine the exact location. If water is visibly...
How To Keep Your Pet’s Drinking Water Safe

How To Keep Your Pet’s Drinking Water Safe

Summer typically means more outdoor activities for both pets and their owners. That also makes access to clean drinking water vital for both you and your pet. Under ideal circumstances, clean, filtered water is the best choice for your pets. While you can’t eliminate all sources of standing water in the environment, especially if you take your pet on excursions to the park or on runs on nature trails, monitoring when and where your pet drinks can go a long way toward keeping them safe and hydrated. Problems with Standing Water Your pet may be tempted to grab a quick drink from standing water in mud puddles and ditches, but this can pose a health risk. Standing water can contain chemicals or contaminants from the surrounding area and may contain harmful bacteria, such as Giardia or Leptospirosis. Giardia can cause severe diarrhea and dehydration that can even lead to death if untreated. Leptospirosis causes lethargy, muscle tremors, jaundice, fever and can lead to renal failure. Carry fresh water with you and offer it to your pet frequently while you are away from home and watch them closely to prevent them from drinking sources of standing water. Advantages of Water Fountains If you haven’t purchased a water fountain for your pet yet, it may be time to head out to your local pet supply store. Consider these advantages of providing fresh water for your pets via a water fountain. Pets prefer to drink from moving water. Both cats and dogs seek out sources of running or moving water over stagnant water and enjoy drinking from a fountain where fresh water is always moving....
Caulking Your Toilet Can Prevent Future Plumbing Problems

Caulking Your Toilet Can Prevent Future Plumbing Problems

Many people don’t think about their toilet until a problem arises. However, being proactive and doing what you can to prevent problems will save you headaches and the cost of repairs. One of the best things you can do to prevent water or moisture from getting under your toilet where it cannot be cleaned is to caulk it properly. 0909 Use Silicone Caulking Silicone caulking creates a water tight seal and prevents water or moisture from showers or mopping from seeping underneath the toilet. It may be sold as tub and tile caulking or bathroom caulking and comes in a tube. Resist the urge to buy the cheapest tube available. High-quality caulking may cost a bit more, but it can save you a bundle in the long run. Select the Right Color Caulking comes in a variety of colors. Choose a shade the closest to the color of your toilet for the best results. This enhances the appearance of your entire bathroom and makes your toilet look like it belongs there. Prepare the Area Clean the area where the caulk will be applied and allow it to dry completely to ensure the best seal. Use painter’s tape to mark off the area so that any excess caulking will not mark your toilet or the floor. Applying the Caulking Use a caulking gun (you can buy one at your local hardware store) to apply an even bead of caulking around the base of your toilet. Fill the joint completely and smooth it with your finger or a caulking tool. Keep a cloth moistened with solvent handy to remove any stray caulking. Place a...
Bathroom Plumbing Mistakes To Avoid in Your Home

Bathroom Plumbing Mistakes To Avoid in Your Home

If you are like most people, your bathroom is probably one of the busiest rooms in your house. Making your bathroom layout efficient can save you time and help your entire family get a good start to the day. But before you decide to tackle a remodel, take the time to plan ahead so you can avoid these common bathroom 26plumbing mistakes: Improper Slopes for Shower Drains If you are the do-it-yourself kind, you may think you can install a shower yourself. While it is possible, you need to be aware of the proper slope for the base of the shower so that the water will drain properly. An improper slope may cause standing water to remain in the shower and create the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. You will need to remove the old flooring all the way to the masonry and maintain a slope of 1/4 inch per foot. If you aren’t sure how to accomplish this, consider the services of a professional. Forgetting the P-Trap While it may seem easier to run a straight pipe from your sinks and drains, this can lead to health risks in your home. Your sinks and drains need a P-trap to prevent sewer gases from re-entering your home. These work to trap a small amount of water in the pipe after each use. The water in the trap creates a barrier and keeps the dangerous sewer gases out of your home. Installing a P-trap when you remodel is vital. Forgetting to Vent the Sink Installing a P-trap won’t do you much good if you forget to vent the sink...
How to Troubleshoot Water Pressure Problems At Your Business

How to Troubleshoot Water Pressure Problems At Your Business

If your business depends on consistent water pressure, even occasional low pressure can cause problems. If your water pressure has suddenly dropped or is inconsistent, there are several reasons for that. Some can be easy to correct, while others may require changes to your plumbing. Before you make that call to a plumber, check out these common reasons for low water pressure. High Use Times If you are connected to municipal water, you may experience low water pressure during high use times, such as early in the morning when families are preparing for the day or early evening when water is used for household chores. If you experience low water pressure at these times, try to arrange work tasks that require high water pressure for other times of the day. Leaks If your problems with low water pressure persist throughout the day, it may be a sign that you have a leak somewhere in the building. Check toilets and faucets for leaks first as these are the most common culprits. A toilet that continues to run, even after the tank has refilled, signals a leaky valve that should be corrected. This can put a strain on your water supply and cause water pressure to dip whenever the toilet tank is trying to refill. If faucets and toilets appear fine, check under sinks and along pipes for signs of water damage. A broken or leaky pipe in the wall or basement might be the source of your water pressure problems. Water Softening Systems If your business has a water softening system, it could be the cause of your low water...
Five Plumbing Practices Your Restaurant Should Follow

Five Plumbing Practices Your Restaurant Should Follow

If you run a restaurant, you already know how important water is to your business. It is vital for both cooking and maintaining clean and sanitary conditions in your kitchen and serving areas. It is also probably one of your major costs of operating the business; you pay to bring water into your business, pay to heat it and then pay again to get rid of excess water. Keeping your plumbing in tip-top shape and conserving water when you’re able to can help keep your utility bills down without compromising the health and safety of your business. Consider these ways to make the most effective and efficient use of water in your restaurant. Faucets Check that faucets function properly and do not leak when they are not in use. A small drip can go unnoticed in a busy restaurant but can make a big impact on your utility bills. Look for evidence of leaks around the pipes and under the sinks and repair them as soon as possible. You can also save water and energy by installing low-flow aerators at all your sinks. Switching from the standard 2.2 gallons per minute aerator to .5 gallons per minute aerator can save up to $100 per year for each sink, and it won’t affect the function of the faucet. Water Brooms Water brooms are faster and more efficient for cleaning spray-down areas than traditional garden hose nozzles and can save a bundle in energy costs too. A garden hose nozzles typically uses up to 7 gallons of water per minute, while a water broom uses only 2 gallons per minute. Look for...
Why Does Flushing the Toilet Affect the Shower?

Why Does Flushing the Toilet Affect the Shower?

If you live in a busy household, you may have had the experience of getting a blast of hot water in the shower because another family member flushed the toilet while you were showering. While this doesn’t happen under ideal circumstances, it is a common issue in many American homes. Once you understand what causes the problem, you will be in a position to do something about it. Learn why and how it happens and some easy solutions to the problem: Why Does it Happen? If flushing the toilet in your home causes the water in the shower to get extremely hot, your plumbing is probably set up with a trunk and branch system. What this means is all the water travels through the trunk and then narrows to individual branches that are diverted to each room. When one room calls for water, it can divert some of the water already in use (the shower), to the secondary water use (the toilet tank). Because the toilet is calling for cold water, the shower then has to share the cold water it was using. This results in too little cold water in your mixture for the shower and a blast of hot water until the toilet tank is filled. Prevention Tips To avoid having blasts of hot water in the shower, check out these solutions in order from the simplest to the most complex: Don’t flush the toilet when someone is in the shower. Depending on the cooperation between family members, this solution is often the easiest. It doesn’t cost a thing and eliminates the problem. However, even the most courteous...