Saturday, July 20, 2019
Displaying items by tag: plumbing
Tuesday, 03 March 2015 06:50

Spring Plumbing Maintenance Tips

Spring is a good time to check your home's plumbing system inside and outside to ensure you are not wasting water from leaks or missing potentially larger problems in your home's sewer line. Here are a few plumbing maintenance tips:

1. Fix Leaks - Inspect shower heads and faucets for leaks. A single dripping faucet can waste hundreds of gallons of water in a year. Check toilets for leaks by adding several drops of food coloring to the toilet tank. If the tank is leaking, colored water will appear in the toilet bowl.

2. Test Your Sump Pump - Test the sump pump by pouring a bucket of water into the sump pump pit. The pump should turn on immediately, remove the water, then turn off.

3. Sewer & Drain Maintenance - Check that all drains have strainers to prevent debris clogging the drain lines. Schedule a sewer line inspection. A video sewer line inspection will help to find the small issues before they become a major problem.

4. Ensure Plumbing Systems Are Regularly Used - Exercising faucets and water valves under sinks and toilets will prevent them from sticking from underuse.

5. Maintain Your Water Heater - Drain a few gallons from the water heater tank to remove sediment, which reduces heating efficiency and can shorten the life of the water heater. Check with your water heater manufacturer's instructions for your specific make/model.

Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Reducing water usage around the home not only helps to conserve and protect our critical water supply, it also saves energy, reducing your utility bill.

Conserving water saves energy by reducing the cost of water treatment, heating water and running appliances that use water.

In fact, according to the EPA, if every U.S. home had efficient plumbing fixtures the U.S. would save more than 3 trillion gallons of water, and an estimated $18 billion dollars per year!

Here are some water saving plumbing upgrades to consider.

Water Conserving Toilets

Toilets typically are responsible for most water wasted in the average home, consuming as much as 30 percent of an average home’s (indoor) water. If your toilets were installed prior to 1994, there is a good chance it uses more than 1.6 gallons of water when flushed. Consider replacing older toilets with a current EPA standard 1.28 gallon model. As an alternative for older larger tank toilets, you can conserve water by placing a small water filled bottle into the toilet tank to reduce the displacement.

Low-Flow Shower Heads

Showering accounts for around 20 percent of an average homes indoor water consumption. Today's low flow shower heads can reduce water consumption by as much as 70% will still providing a strong spray of water.

Efficient Faucets

If you have older, inefficient faucets that use more than 2.5 gallons per minute (gpm), consider replacing them with high-efficiency faucets that have a flow rate of less than 1.5 gpm. Alternatively, you can add an aerator or flow restrictor to the faucet to easily reduce its water flow.

Have questions about water conserving plumbing fixtures? Call Maxwell Plumb. We're here to help.
Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Tuesday, 07 October 2014 13:18

What to Do During a Plumbing Emergency

Plumbing emergencies can range from leaking pipes and clogged drains to a faucets that won't shut off and leaking water heaters. It's important that everyone in the household know the location of the shutoff valve for every plumbing fixture and appliance, as well as the home's main shutoff valve.

Water Shutoff Valves

If a specific plumbing fixture or appliance is leaking or malfunctioning, first look for its shutoff valve and turn it clockwise to turn off the water supply just to the affected system.

The shutoff valve is usually located underneath the toilet or sink. Clothes washers will have two shutoff valves, one each for hot and cold water, often located behind the appliance

If the problem is not with a specific fixture or appliance, or you cannot locate the shutoff valve, locate the main shutoff valve to turn off the water to the entire house. The main shutoff valve will be on the inside where the main water supply pipe enters the house. Turn the valve clockwise to shut it off. If the valve is difficult to turn, keep a wrench near the valve for emergencies.

Have a plumbing emergency? Call Maxwell Plumb. Our professional plumbers will be there in minutes to help fix the problem.
Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
The Causes and Fixes For Low Hot Water Pressure

Low hot water pressure can worsen over time as sediment, rust and mineral deposits accumulate in pipes. Galvanized pipes are especially prone to clogging over time.

Another common source of low hot water pressure is clogged faucet aerators. To remove mineral build up from aerators and shower heads, remove them from the fixture and soak them overnight in vinegar.

Finally, the water heater itself may be clogged or simply worn out. Accumulated sediment in the water heater tank can reduce heating efficiency over time. Check you water heater owner's manual for instructions on flushing the water heater tank.

Have plumbing questions? Call Maxwell Plumb. We're here to help.

Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Wednesday, 03 September 2014 13:46

Choosing a Water Heater For Your Business

When selecting a new water heater for your business, there are a number of important things to consider. First, you need to ensure that the water heater will provide enough hot water during peak demand. Second, water heaters are rated for efficiency, which is found on the EnergyStar label. And finally, their are very different technologies available to heat water.

Ensure You Install a Sufficiently Sized Unit

If your current water heater struggles to provide enough hot water, there are two options. You can upgrade to a larger tank style water heater, or convert to a newer, tankless style water heater.

Tankless or Conventional Water Heater?

While tank water heaters have the lowest initial purchase price, they typically have a shorter lifespan and use more energy by having to keep a large volume of water hot continuously. Installing a water heater blanket can reduce heat loss and lower energy use.

Tankless water heaters heat water only when it's needed, meaning less energy is used and there is a continuous supply of hot water. While they are more expensive to install, they typically last more than 20+ years and can save up to 34 percent on energy costs.

Have questions about hot water heaters? Call Maxwell Plumb, our hot water experts can answer all your questions.

Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Wednesday, 20 August 2014 10:13

Water Heater Leaking? Here's What To Do

Water Heater Leaking? Here's What To Do.

A leaking water heater can range from a small, barely noticable drip to a full-blown flood. Either way, the damage to your home and property can be expensive; ranging from damage to walls and floors, to unhealthy mold and mildew.

If you see water accumulating near your water heater, it may not actually be coming from the water heater. Nearby appliances and condesation on pipes near the water heater can cause moisture to accumulate nearby. Closely inspect the base of the water heater and valves for signs of leaks.

If you determine the water heater is the cause of the leak, the first step is to turn off power to the water heater. If you have an electric water heater, turn the power off from the cicuit breaker. A gas water heater can be shut of from the power supply attached to the unit, usually be turning a knob to the off position. Next, turn off the water from the cold water shut-off valve located near the top of the water heater.

Water heater leaks can occur in several locations, including: the cold water inlet and hot water outlet, the pressure relif valve, the drain valve, and the bottom of the tank. Fixing a water heater is not a do-it-yourslef project. A qualified plumber should make the repair. Depending on the location and severity of the leak, your plumber will either have to repair the water heater, or recommend replacing it.

Preventing damage from water heater leaks.

For an extra measure of protection from unexpected water heater leaks, specially designed pans can be installed unter the water heater to divert water leaks to a nearby floor drain. There are also special water leak alarms that can turn off the water when a leak is detected from the water heater or another source.

Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog

How does a tankless water heater work?

A tankless water heater works on demand so it isn’t using any gas until the  hot water is turned on from the point of use.  The unit starts working at very low pressure to ensure the unit turns on quickly and then will continue to provide hot water heater for as long as you need it to use the shower or faucet, etc. Premium tankless water heaters, also called hybrid water heaters, have a buffer tank installed with a pump,  this eliminates the “cold water sandwich” that is common with tankless water heaters.

What are the advantages of using a tankless water heater?

The first benefit is endless hot water,  you can literally turn the hot water on at 8am and then shut it off at 9pm and it will still be the same temperature.  They also are more efficient than a typical heater usually this means you save on your gas bill.  Next, all parts of the unit are replaceable unlike a tank type water heater,  which means a much longer life expectancy and better warranties.  Because it doesn't have a large tank of water, it will not flood the basement and takes up no floor space.

Can a tankless water heater be installed in the same place as the old water heater?

Yes,  they can be installed almost anywhere because the manufacturing process is completing at the job site it allows greater flexibility for installation location.

How much does it cost to have a tankless water heater installed?

This depends on various things throughout the installation process and what exactly you looking for. That is why Maxwell Plumb always sends a licensed technician to the home first, to examine and discuss the options available. We provide you with a guaranteed price in writing before any work begins.
Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Water will expand when heated, and the excess pressure inside the water heater tank needs to be released. In the past, expanding water inside the tank would simply drain back into the water supply where it came from. Today, water mains are designed to prevent the backward release of pressure, known as backflow, by using a check valve. The check valve prevents dirty water from inside the house returning to the water supply where it would contaminate the supply of fresh water.

What is a water heater expansion tank?

A water heater expansion tank is simply another small tank that is attached to the water supply pipe of the water heater. The expansion tank is designed to handle the thermal expansion of water as it heats up in the water heater, preventing excessive water pressure. If water pressure gets to high it can damage valves in plumbing fixtures, joints in supply pipes and the water heater itself. Expanding water from the water heater flows into the expansion tank, relieving water pressure in the system.

What if my water heater doesn't have an expansion tank?

Most homes that have a check valve on the water main do not have an expansion tank, since it wasn't required until recently. This may or may not cause excessive pressure buildup, depending on the specific design of the plumbing in the house.

If you are noticing that washers in plumbing fixtures are deteriorating rapidly, or water is dripping from the relief valve on the water heater, it may be wise to add an expansion tank. It can be low cost insurance against more costly damage to your home's plumbing system.
Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog

3 Tips to Make Your Water Heater Last Longer and Work More Efficiently

Many people purchase a conventional tank water heater and simply forget about it until it stops working and it's time to replace it.

However, with a few simple water heater maintenance steps you can increase the lifespan of the unit while also making it work more efficiently.

1. Flush the water heater tank annually

Almost all water heater manufacturers will recommend flushing the water heater tank annually. Draining the tank will remove the sediment that has collected at the bottom of the tank which will allow the burner to work more efficiently.

Check the manufacturer's instructions for the correct procedure for draining your model of water heater.

2. Check the anode rod and replace it if needed

The anode rod hangs in the tank to help prevent its inside from rusting out. It should be checked annually when the tank is drained. Replacing a badly corroded rod is far cheaper than replacing the water heater. Without a good anode rod, hot water will rapidly corrode the inside of the tank, shortening its life.

3. Insulate the water heater tank

This is a step you only have to do once. Wrapping your water heater in a blanket of insulation can improve it's efficiency up to 40 percent.
Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Monday, 06 January 2014 09:01

Maintaining a Tankless Water Heater

Maintaining a Tankless Water Heater

Tankless, or on-demand hot water heaters are wonderful, high tech appliances that deliver an endless supply of hot water, while saving on utility bills by heating water only when you need it. Tankless water heaters are also one of the most advaced plumbing devices available today and require special maintenance to ensure optimum performance and long term reliability.

Removing Limescale
Over time, minerals will accumulate on the inside of the tank's heating chamber. To remove this mineral build up the unit should be flushed regularly, at least one a year, to remove the accumulated limescale deposits. The steps involved in flushing the tank will vary by manufacturer, but the procedure typically involves attaching a hose and flushing the tank with vinegar. See your owners manual for details.

Cleaning the Water Heater Screen Filter
Another important tankless water heater maintenance task involves cleaning the in-line screen filter to remove any accumulated debris.  Turn off the incoming water supply. The filter is located on inlet fixture on the cabinet. Unscrew the plug to remove the filter. Rinse the filter off and reinstall it on the unit. Consult your owners manual for the location of the screen and important safety information.
Published in Maxwell Plumb Blog
Start
Prev
1
Page 1 of 2
Experience Maxwell

Maxwell Plumb Blog

  • Maxwell Plumb Does Your Home Need a Dehumidifier? Written by Maxwell Plumb

    During a typical New York summer the air can be hot and muggy outside, which can mean excess moisture inside. Excessive indoor humidity is not just uncomfortable, it can lead to unhealthy mold, musty odors and condensation that can damage wood surfaces and paint.

    In today's tight, well insulated homes, excess moisture can make your air conditioner work harder to keep the air cool and dry. To help keep the air dryer, a dehumidifier can be an effective solution.

    How does a dehumidifier work?
    As warm, humid air is blown across a cold coil by a fan, moisture condenses into liquid, which can be removed through a drain pipe. The dry air then passes over a warm coil and is added back into the room. Dehumidifiers are controlled by an instrument called a dehumidistat, which turns the unit on and off depending on the amount of moisture detected in the air. The level of moisture is controlled by a dehumidistat, which turns the unit on and off. A dehumidifier's capacity is measured in pints of water removed every 24 hours.

    Carrier Whole Home Dehumidifers
    A whole house dehumidifier is designed to work in conjunction with your home's heating and air conditioning system by monitoring and controlling the level of humidity. It operates quietly and is easily maintained by cleaning a filter.

    Have questions about controlling excess humidity in your home? Call Maxwell Plumb, we're here to help.





    Written on Tuesday, 24 March 2015 06:52 in Maxwell Plumb Blog
    Tags: indoor air quality dehumidifier humidity Be the first to comment! Read 4716 times Read more...
MAXWELL PLUMB IS A LEAD-SAFE
EPA Lead Safe NYC
EPA CERTIFIED FIRM
NAT-29738-1

Employment


Go Green

New York City Area Neighborhoods We Serve Include: