Friday, November 17, 2017

Stuffing More Than Just the Turkey: 6 Ways to Avoid a Thanksgiving Plumbing Disaster


Did you know that one of the most popular weekends to call the plumber is over the Thanksgiving weekend? The stress on the garbage disposal and the pressure of guests using the toilets, showers, and sinks can be distressing. Don't become another Thanksgiving statistic. Abide by these tips instead of hosting a Thanksgiving plumbing disaster this year.


1.      Save your plumbers number to your phone so that you aren't scouring the phone book or Internet in case the toilet is overflowing onto your beautiful floors.
2.      If you know in advance that you will be hosting the big meal, call your plumber in Ledgewood NJ for some preliminary examination. Your goal is to make sure that your pipes are in good enough condition to handle the influx of guests you will be entertaining.
3.      Put fats and oils in the trash, not the sink. These items should never go down the drain because they can create clogs when they ultimately solidify. You can use paper towels to wipe grease into the trash. You should also keep anything stringy, bony, or starchy out of the garbage disposal. This includes chicken or turkey skin, potato peels and celery. These items do not break down easily, eventually leading to clogs.
4.      Never flush food (of any size) down the toilet. The toilet is not designed to handle the stress of food, and you may find that it is backed up. It is certainly not a good alternative to the garbage disposal.
5.      Try to keep guests from taking showers back to back. It is better to provide your pipes with a short break, allowing items like hair to disperse rather than clog your drains.
6.      Anytime you use the garbage disposal while cooking the big meal, keep the motor going when you start to put the food in. Don't allow the disposal to fill up before you hit the switch. Additionally, be sure to keep the water running while you do this.

Don't you want to spend more time with your loved ones and less time hanging out with the plumber on Thanksgiving? We encourage you to follow these steps and to call us at The Polite Plumber with any questions or service needs you may have.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Don't Fall for These Common Plumbing Myths

Many homeowners underestimate the complexity of plumbing and try to find solutions to their plumbing problems online. Unfortunately, many of these "quick fixes" are based on incorrect information and can even cause further damage to your plumbing system. The following are a few of the myths that we hear most often.

Low Water Pressure Is Nothing to Worry About:

Low water pressure can be a sign of a water leak. Not only will this hit your wallet in the form of higher water bills, but an undiagnosed leak can cause damage to your home and property that you may not see right away.

Drain Clogs Are Inevitable:

A few preventative steps can prevent most kitchen and bathroom drain clogs. In the kitchen, use a filter or strainer in your drain to prevent food particles from going down the drain. You should also use a filter in the shower or bathtub to catch the hair and run hot water down the drain regularly to help remove soap scum. Finally, never flush anything down your toilet other than human waste and toilet paper. Feminine hygiene products and wipes, even if they say they are flushable, can cause clogs.

Commercial Drain Cleaners Are the Best Way to Unclog a Drain:

Liquid drain cleaners are ineffective against clogs caused by solids. They also contain harsh chemicals that can corrode and damage your pipes. Your best option is to call a professional plumber who can make sure that the clog is removed completely without harming the rest of your plumbing system.

Putting a Brick in the Toilet Tank Will Save Water:

While it is true that the brick will displace water so that the tank will take less water to fill, it is a bad idea for a couple of reasons. First, bricks deteriorate when placed in water for an extended time. The sediment can end up damaging various components of your toilet. You also run the risk of displacing too much water and having to flush twice, which negates any potential water savings.

My Water Is Flowing Fine, So I Do Not Have to Worry About a Clog:

Clogs often develop over time. For example, leftover rice may go down the drain quite easily; however, it will absorb water and bloat over time. Eventually, the clog will reach a size where the water can longer pass and therefore create a nasty backup. Having your pipes inspected once a year is the best way to identify potential clogs before they can cause a major headache.

We encourage you to call The Polite Plumber in Ledgewood NJ with any questions or service needs you may have.
 

Thursday, August 31, 2017

3 Reasons to Trust Your Home to a Professional Plumbing Service

With the myriad of home improvement shows and all kinds of plumbing solutions available at the click of a mouse, it is easy to understand why the average homeowner may want to try and fix their plumbing issues themselves. After all, if Chip and Joanna can do it in under an hour, can't the average homeowner?

The truth is, while reality TV shows make any repair seem effortless, the truth is that home repairs rarely go as planned, and plumbing repairs are no exception. So while you may be tempted to try to perform a plumbing repair yourself, here are three valid reasons why hiring a professional plumbing service is a smart decision.

It's Hassle-free

A professional plumber can save you the hassle of trying to perform maintenance or repairs on your own plumbing system. Such maintenance may be a clogged pipe, a leaky connection, or a backed up sewage tank. When trusting your home in the care of a professional, you are taking the guess-work out of figuring out the best plan of attack, while at the same time, saving yourself a myriad of frustrations if you are uncertain of the best way to properly address specific plumbing issues.

It's Cost-effective

While it is true that times are tight financially, hiring a professional plumber to perform routine service on your home's plumbing system may seem like an added and unnecessary expense. Consider for a moment, the cost of trying to do it yourself. Not only might you need to purchase additional tools, but the cost to fix any damage you may accidentally cause when attempting a repair for which you have no knowledge or training, may send you to the poorhouse. If the extent of your training is an article you read on the internet, hiring a professional may, when it's all said in done, prove to be much more cost-effective.

It Comes With a Guarantee

Any professional plumbing service that is worth doing business with will have written guarantees regarding both their work, and the fixtures or equipment they install in your home.

We encourage you to make the smart decision and give The Polite Plumber in Ledgewood NJ a call. We’re always happy to help and/or answer any questions you may have!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Helpful Plumbing Tips for New Homeowners

As a first time homeowner, you have a ton of new responsibilities, and learning to properly care for your recently purchased house is just one of them. Luckily, when it comes to your home's plumbing, following a few simple tips can help you protect your house from costly repairs.
  1. Make it your mission to find the water's main shut off valve immediately after moving in. If a major plumbing emergency does occur, knowing where the valve is located can save your home from serious water damage.
  2. Avoid using a liquid drain cleaner. While pouring a bottle of drain cleaner into a clogged sink or bathtub seems like an easy solution, in reality, the cleaner can damage the pipes in your home. The main chemical in a store-bought drain cleaner is hydrochloric acid, which will eat away at your pipes as it sits in them. Instead, buy a snake from your local home improvement store, and if that doesn't get rid of the clog, calling a plumber is the next best option.
  3. If you live in an area where winter temperatures fall below freezing, winterizing your pipes is a must. Adding insulation tubes to pipes in unheated areas protects them from freezing temperatures. Unfortunately, leaving your pipes uncovered can lead to the water in them freezing and the pipes cracking. Also, during extremely cold nights, allow all faucets on exterior walls to drip slightly. This alleviates any pressure caused by an ice blockage and can potentially stop a pipe from bursting.
  4. Find a trustworthy plumber before an emergency hits. Having to frantically search for a plumber as your basement floods is not ideal and can lead to you hiring an unreliable plumbing company. Instead, do a little research before you're caught in a desperate situation. That way, you can choose a plumber you feel confident about.
If you're a new homeowner and you're looking for a dependable plumber to help maintain your home's drains and pipes, please contact The Polite Plumber in Ledgewood NJ today. We're happy to help you.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Tips to Cut Your Water Bill



Summer is heating up and along with rising temperatures, many people are seeing rising utility bills. Families are using more and more water in an attempt to keep cool. Here are four ways to help your family reduce its water bill.

1.     Fix Leaky Faucets: A dripping tap can waste an amazing quantity of water, and a steady stream could waste enough water to service an entire family for one day. Prompt attention to any leaks would equal exponential saving. 
2.     Install Aerators: An aerator is a simple water-conserving device that connects to the tip of a faucet and restricts the flow of water while maintaining the same perceived flow rate. Many modern sinks come with aerators already installed, but older residences could benefit from this simple upgrade.
3.     Install a Water-Saving Toilet: Older commodes can use between 3.5 to 7 gallons of water per flush. New federal law requires modern toilets to use no more than 1.6 gallons, and some use even less. The cost incurred with installing a modern high-efficiency toilet would quickly pay for itself.
4.     Have a Shallow Well Installed: If you live in an area where the water table is quite high, make the most of your good fortune! Watering your lawn and garden with water from your shallow well could drastically cut your usage and your utility bill. 

For more ideas on how to cut your water bill this summer, give The Polite Plumber a call today! We have all sorts of ideas to help you save!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Do You Need Drain Cleaning This Spring?

Spring is here and you are in the mood for spring cleaning. As you empty out your closets and clean under the bed, you might be ignoring an important cleaning job. Your pipes get a lot of wear and tear throughout the year. There is a lot of hair, oil and debris that pass through them and can build up in them. Here are some reasons to consider having a professional drain cleaning this spring.

Faster Draining Means Cleaner Sinks and Bathtubs
When there is debris and buildup in your pipes, you will notice your sinks and bathtubs drain more slowly. In the time it takes for this water to drain, the dirt and soap will begin to cling to the basin. You will find yourself constantly wiping out your sinks and tubs. After your pipes have been cleaned, the water will drain more quickly and not leave as much residue behind.

Avoid Blockages
When oil and other items build up in your pipes, you will eventually reach a point where they will not drain at all. You will find your home with standing water in the sinks and tubs and toilets that are overflowing. If the blockage is bad enough, you might require an emergency visit from your local plumber.

Bigger Issues Identified
When a professional comes to clean your drains this spring, they will inspect your pipes and faucets. If there are bigger plumbing issues in your home, they will be able to identify them and create a plan to fix them. This can save the aggravation of coming home to a burst pipe or other plumbing issues that leaves water pouring out into your home.

If you have questions related to your plumbing in Budd Lake, NJ, just call The Polite Plumber at (973) 398-0875. We’ll never ask how it happened!

Friday, February 24, 2017

Tips for Preventing Freezing Pipes

Freezing pipes present a big threat to home owners. Frozen pipes not only limit water from running throughout your house, they can easily burst and damage your home.

Preventing your pipes from freezing is much easier and cheaper than fixing a frozen or burst pipe. Here are some tips for how to prevent freezing pipes:

Avoid Stagnant Water
Pipes are most vulnerable to freezing when water inside isn’t circulating. There are two important ways to avoid water sitting in your pipes and freezing.

·        First, drain pipes that aren’t used over the winter. Disconnect any hoses or sprinklers that won’t be used and close valves that supply water to these outdoor spigots. After the water is shut off for these areas, open the hose bibs to allow the remaining water in the pipes to drain.

·        As for pipes that are in use during the winter, it is important to keep water circulating during extremely cold weather. If temperatures are very cold, it is smart to let water drip from faucets throughout your home. The running water will help prevent these pipes from freezing and possibly bursting.

Prepare for Vacation
One of the most common times for pipes to freeze is while homeowners are away on vacation. However, this can be avoided by following a few easy steps.

·        Since water won’t be running at all while you’re gone, it’s important to drain your pipes before you leave. Shut off the main water supply to your home and drain pipes by opening all faucets and flushing toilets.

·        A common mistake home owners make is thinking that they don’t need to heat their home while they’re away. While the temperature certainly doesn’t need to be comfortable for living, it is important to keep the heat running low to prevent pipes from dropping below freezing.

Heating Products
There are numerous products you can use to help keep pipes in your home warm.

·        Insulation foam can be wrapped around exposed pipes in your home to keep them at a moderate temperature. Consider this for exterior pipes or pipes in your attic that are exposed to cold temperatures.

·        Similar to insulation foam, products such as heat tape and a heat cable can keep your pipes warm. Run the tape or cable along areas of pipes that are most vulnerable to freezing.

Expose Pipes to Warm Air
·        Most pipes in your home are likely running through walls or inside of cabinets. Open kitchen and cabinet doors to expose the pipes to the warm air circulating through your home.

If you have questions related to your plumbing in Flanders,NJ, just call The Polite Plumber at (973) 398-0875. We’ll never ask how it happened!