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Maxwell Plumb Blog
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Monday, 11 November 2013 15:01

The Causes and Cures For Low Water Pressure

Written by Maxwell Plumb

The Causes and Cures For Low Water Pressure

There can be many causes for low water pressure in commercial building, and the cure can range from simple point-source fixes to more complex water supply upgrades. The following are some helpful tips to diagnose and fix some of the most common causes of reduced water flow in the home.

Clogged Faucet Aerators

Hard water and debris can cause faucet aerators to become dirty and clogged over time, eventually restricting the flow of water.  By regularly removing and cleaning the faucet aerator screens you can keep the water flowing freely.  Vinegar can be used to dissolve mineral deposits on faucet aerators and shower heads. Simply submerge them overnight to dissolve the mineral deposits.

Low-Flow Plumbing Fixtures

If fixtures are equipped with low-flow devices, try swapping it out with a regular fixture to increase the flow of water.

Water Supply Valves

If the water supply valve in your home has recently been shut off, it may not have been returned to the fully opened position. Check to ensure it is fully opened.

Advanced Solutions For Low Water Pressure

If you've checked the techniques above to increase your home's water pressure without success, Maxwell Plumb can help with more problematic water pressure problems.

One solution is a residential water pressure booster. A water pressure booster is a supplementary water pump that works with your building's existing water supply to increase water pressure.

Hidden Water Leaks

Maxwell Plumb can also help find more serious sources of low water pressure. If you have a water pipe that is leaking, it will affect the water pressure in your house significantly– and increase your water bill. Try turning off the water supply both inside and outside the building, then check the water meter. Check the water meter once more a couple hours later to determine if the water usage has increased. If so, you probably have a leak that needs to be located and repaired.

Water Supply Main Pipe

Another option is to increase the size of the main pipe supplying water to your house. See if you can determine what type of water pipes you have in the building and running to your water meter. Pipe size is an important factor in the amount of water pressure you'll get in your building. The larger the pipes, the more the water pressure, so you may want to consider increasing the size of the main pipe servicing your house.

Saturday, 17 August 2013 20:41

Is Your HVAC System Harboring Mold?

Written by Maxwell Plumb
Mold is commonly found in varying amounts in building HVAC systems. When mold grows unattended it can decrease air quality and lead to health issues in the building. Therefore it's important to learn about typical sources of air conditioner mold and learn how to remove mold before it reaches harmful levels.

Air conditioning systems are especially prone to mold in area such as the drain pan, which holds standing water for long periods of time. Pipes with bends and curves may also hold water in suspension, leading to mold growth. Sometimes when  mold growing inside the unit you can also see it growing on the inside of the air ducts.

While mold may be visible around the air conditioner and ventilation system, removing the mold is not as simple as cleaning the surfaces where mold is visible, you need to find the source of the problem to prevent mold from recurring.

Sometimes the source of excessive moisture that causes mold is from water leaks and defects in the unit. Maxwell Plumb's HVAC technicians can locate the cause of the excess moisture and recommend solutions.

Preventing Mold In Your Air Conditioner

To avoid dealing with mold issues in the future, examine your condenser drain regularly for clogs. If this drain gets backed up, the standing water can develop bacteria, which in turn can lead to mold. Once you’ve removed the mold from the system, you’ll need to make sure it doesn’t return by regularly maintaining the unit to keep the ducts clean.

Having your air ducts cleaned regularly can help to remove visible mold growing in the air ducts. If you can see mold in these places, there may be mold accumulating in other parts of the building. If the mold problem is severe enough, you’ll need to contact a mold specialist. Make sure that the professional who cleans your system uses a cleaning treatment that does not contain harmful chemicals that may adversely affect your indoor air quality.

Plumbing LeakUndetected water leaks can cost you money not only on your water bill, but in unseen damage to your building. They can also cause health problems by allowing mold to grow undetected in enclosed spaces.

The most common types of leaks we find are worn out toilet flappers, dripping faucets, leaking valves and pipes. Repairing these leaks can pay for itself in water savings alone.

Checking for Leaks

When checking for leaks around your building, you first need to determine whether you're wasting any water, and then identify the source of the leak.

Have a look at your water meter before and after a couple hour period when water is not being used. If the meter shows any increase at all, you probably have a leak.

Leaking Toilets

You can identify toilet leaks by placing a drop of food coloring in the toilet tank. If any color shows up in the bowl after 15 minutes, you have a leak.

The most common reason toilets leak is an old or worn out toilet flapper, also called a valve seal. Flappers are inexpensive rubber parts that can build up minerals or decay over time. Replacing them can be a quick and easy fix for your water loss.

Also examine the toilet gaskets and  fittings for any water leaks on the outside of the toilet.

Leaking Faucets

The most common cause of leaking faucets are old, worn faucet washers and gaskets.

Leaking Water Heaters

Old water heater tanks can rust and develop leaks over time. Inspect the area around the water heater tank for signs of water leaks or stains.

If you are still experiencing water loss after checking the plumbing fixtures around your home, call Maxwell Plumb. can help you solve the more difficult water leak problems.

Thursday, 20 June 2013 21:12

Backflow Prevention and Testing For Business

Written by Maxwell Plumb
If you operate a business in the New York City area, you know that protecting your plumbing system from backflow is critical to the health and safety of your customers and employees.

Backflow prevention devices are often found on:

  • Hose bibs
  • Swimming pools
  • Hospital equipment
  • Soda machines and dispensers
  • Ice makers and coffee makers
  • Drinking fountains
  • Sinks
  • Cooling towers
  • Watering systems
  • Fire sprinkler systems and wall hydrants
  • And many other appliances and plumbing systems

Backflow Prevention In Restaurants

Backflow and back siphonage devices are designed to keep contaminated waste water and sewage in their proper place and away from areas where they could cause sickness or harm.  For example produce washing sinks are required to have an air gap in their drain line.  This “break” in the line keeps a sewer back up from contaminating the sink by allowing the backup to flow out of the air gap onto the floor instead up the drain pipe and into the sink. 

Without backflow prevention, a sewer backup in the middle of the night might go unnoticed and the next day a restaurant could be washing produce in raw sewage, right inside their produce washing sink.  These devices are also used to keep any contamination from the restaurant out of the clean water supply. 

An example of how this could happen is a hose connected to a faucet that is sitting in a sink full of dirty dish water.  If there is a sudden drop in pressure in the water main, the dirty water from the sink could be siphoned up the hose and back into the water supply line.

NYC DEP backflow Prevention enforcement campaign is now in progress. Be sure your building is in compliance to avoid fines or water shut-off. At Maxwell Plumb we can help keep your plumbing system safe from backflow while also keeping your business in compliance with NYC backflow regulations

Our Backflow Prevention Services include:

  • Backflow Preventer Installation and Replacement
  • Certified Backflow Preventer Testing, Tagging and Maintenance
  • Backflow Prevention Device Consultation
  • Backflow Preventer Repair
  • Backflow Preventer Paperwork Completion
  • Backflow Preventer Paperwork Submission to WSSC or Local Authority

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  • 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 4920 times Read more...
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