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Can Water Heaters Explode?

Posted on: February 3rd, 2017 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Based on the statistics of Insurance for Business and Home Safety (IBHS), exploding water heaters is one of the five leading reasons of water damage in residences. The average cost of damage is roughly about $4,000 per incident. This is a scary scenario that you cannot readily dismiss. The possibility is real for all types of water heaters, so what can you do to prevent or at least minimize the likelihood of an exploding water heater.

Cause of Explosion

The good news is that under normal circumstances, there are only a few instances wherein an ordinary water heater can become dangerous and quite possibly explode. What are these?

  • Gas leaks – obviously, just like anything else where gas is involved, everything becomes volatile and explosive. So if gas is possibly leaking around or within the water heater, all that is lacking is a small ignition that will serve as a catalyst for the explosion.
  • Rust corroded tank – the steel material used for the water heater is susceptible to rust over time. This is why water heating systems are designed with an internal rust protection in the form of an anode rod element. The rod is about 3 to 5 feet and placed in the tank to attract the rust.  The drawback is that the rod can deteriorate, which is why it is necessary to regularly replace it.  The telltale sign of rust is when the hot water coming from the faucet is rusty in color.
  • Water pressure – when water is subjected to heating, the pressure will begin to build up within the tank. Under normal operation the water heater should shutoff or release the pressure with its built-in safety pressure valve.  When the safety mechanism fails, the pressure will continue to build up to the point where the tank cannot contain it and simply give in.
  • Sediment build up – sediment comes from the minerals found in hard water. Inside the water heater tank it usually settles at the bottom. As time goes by the sediment forms a mineral layer that will serve as an insulation from the burner.  This results in the burner running longer than necessary causing overheating and eventual deterioration of the tank. You will normally hear a popping or knocking sound coming from the water heater when there is sediment build up in the tank.  This is caused by the bubbling of the sediment as it attempts to push towards the top.

Avoiding Explosion

For an average home, even the slightest explosion can be very devastating and result in thousands of dollars’ worth in damages. The good news is that there are some steps that can be taken to prevent these explosions from happening with a few maintenance tips. What are the things that you must do?

  • Annual tune-up – making sure that your water is always in optimal functioning condition is one of the best ways to ensure that it does not explode. This can be done with the help of a licensed professional plumber who can go over every safety mechanism.
  • Professional installation and repair – tempting as it may seem, always leave the installation and repair to the experts. The few dollars you save is not worth risking an exploding water heater.
  • Temperature and pressure valves – these help monitor the temperature and pressure to ensure that optimum operating values are never exceeded. Test them regularly to catch any potential problems early on.
  • Thermostat – never set the temperature too high. Make sure that the thermostat is set anywhere from 120 to 130 degrees, this also protects you from scalding.
  • Draining the tank – make sure that you flush and drain the water heater tank at least once a year to prevent sediment from building up.
  • Anode rod – inspect the anode rod at least once a year and make sure to note that it needs replacement every 4 to 5 years. Replacement can be required sooner if you have a water softener installed.

Now that you know why water heater explode, these easy to follow tips can help you prevent it.  For a sure fire solution, schedule regular maintenance with a licensed plumbing professional.

Common Water Softener Repair and Issues

Posted on: June 2nd, 2014 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Since installing water softener at home is necessary, you need to be familiar with some water softener repair and issues. The same as with other parts of your plumbing, this water treating unit could also experience some problems. Calling the experts even with simple issues could really be expensive.

Line blockage

This blockage could happen due to the accumulation of water mineral and salt in the lines of the water softener. This problem often occurs in the water line leading to the brine tank and also on the filter screen.

There are also times when your softener would not function well so your water is not treated well. When this happens, it leads to frequent accumulation of sediments and deposits in the water lines.

If you wanted to know how to deal with this sediment build-up, consult your water softener manual. This would surely contain information that could assist you. Also make sure to practice maintenance on your softener to prevent the occurrence of this line blockage. Ways to do it is also available in the manual.

Salt Bridge

Accumulation of sodium could form a hard pile of deposit inside the water tank. This is called salt bridge. This happens due to use of sodium chloride in water softeners.

You simply have to break this build-up using anything that you could use to reach down the tank like a crowbar.

Resin Bead Maintenance

Even though most resin beads are made to last until your softener becomes unusable anymore, there will always come a time that it has to be cleaned or replaced. These beads have some problems when your unit needs to be recharged often.

This frequent need for recharging only means that something is wrong in your resin beads. If you see that the resin beads start to break down, you need to replace it.

Problems with the Motor

The water softener uses a motor for it to function. The same as with other appliances or units with motor, it could fail some time. When the softener suddenly shuts down and will not anymore work, checking the motor is necessary.

See to it that all connections are good. Also check the power cord for it could easily become disconnected or it might have loosened a bit. If you don’t see any obvious problem in the motor, it is best to call a professional.

These are just some of the many ways that you could check and repair problems in your water softener. Of course, when you see that the problem is more than you could handle, do not hesitate to call the experts fast. We at Huntington Beach Plumbing offer high quality repair and maintenance service for your water softener.

Reliable Kitchen Sink Plumbing Repair Tips

Posted on: June 2nd, 2014 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Doing some simple kitchen plumbing sink repair is possible especially when you have the interest. It will not only make you a skillful plumber wannabe but above all, it could help you save money since you don’t need to pay for professional service.

There are just some simple problems in your kitchen sink that you could perform personally. But, when the problem is serious, it is still best to call the experts.

Be Familiar with the parts of your Kitchen Sink

Before you even think about repairs, it is a must that you know the different parts of your kitchen sink. With this knowledge, you will be able to do troubleshooting and repair smoothly.

The most visible part of the sink is the strainer and below it are the metal washer and the rubber gasket. These are put in place with a locknut.

At the top of the drainpipe, you will see a trap which prevents sewer gases from going into your kitchen area. This is always filled with water and acts as a seal for the sewer gases.

Examine the Leak

Remember that not all leaks are handled the same way. You need different type of repair for different types of leaks. For example, dealing with leaks on the spout is different in dealing with leaks around the base of the spout.

When the leak is found on the spout base, the problem is a worn out O-ring. You simply have to replace this part with a new one. Removing this part might mean removing other parts of the faucet. See to it that you familiarize the part before removing it so that reinstalling will not be that hard.

Turn Off the Water Supply

Beneath your kitchen sink are two shut-off valves – one for the cold water and the other one is for hot water. Shut-off these valves when doing some repair. If you don’t see any valve, you really have to cut-off the water from the main water supply.

Timely Repair for Leaks

If you have a wooden floor in your kitchen, it is very important that you address leaks in a timely manner. This is because water is the number one enemy of wood.

Mold could also easily grow due to the water waste from your leaking sink. If this is not addressed fast, it could result to a foul odor in your kitchen.

Get Professional Help

Most of the problems related to the kitchen sink would simply require replacement of worn out pipes. If ever you think that you could not handle the problem or you don’t have the time to do it, you could always call for professional service. We at Huntington Beach Plumbing are always ready to do any kitchen plumbing sink repair service.

Tankless Water Heaters: Energy Efficient Option for Homeowners

Posted on: February 19th, 2014 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Today, water heating system at home is very important since everyone in the family needs hot water for various reasons. If you are still using the traditional tank type heater, it’s time to try tankless water heater.

Issues with Traditional Water Heater

In order to have a good idea regarding the usefulness and benefits of using tankless water heater, it is necessary that you also have some knowledge about how the traditional tank type works.

The storage type of heaters constantly heats the water inside the tank. This alone makes it less energy efficient.

Every time you want to use hot water, cold water is added at the bottom part of the tank. This again needs extra energy for heating since a certain temperature is required inside the tank.

In this type of heating system, the water is heated 24/7 which means that energy is used even when everyone in the house is fast asleep. The tank needs to be heated permanently to supply you with hot water when needed.

This kind of set-up is an advantage in big establishments where there is a constant and high demand for hot water. But, for households, this is not a money-efficient option.

A tip from the experts in real estate property, if you plan to purchase a house, see to it that a tankless water heater is already installed. If you want to switch your old water heater, see to it that you install a tankless type of heater as a replacement.

How does Tankless Heater Works

The tankless heater only works when there is demand. It means that if you don’t frequently use hot water, it would also be good for your water bill. If you need hot water for example in a shower, the flow of water in the pipes will activate the elements that would heat the water as it passes the pipes.

You don’t have to worry regarding space since there is no need for a tank. The good thing is that when you need water, this system could provide it. You simply need to purchase a type that could answer your need for hot water.

Advantages of Tankless Type

There are various advantages when you go for tankless water heater. One of this is the fact that you could save up to 30-50% on your bill. This means a big saving for a family who wanted to save from their expenses at home.

When it comes to durability, it is expected to last longer than the traditional option. It could go without problem for about 20 years especially when maintained properly. When it comes to problems on parts replacement, parts are easy to find and above all inexpensive.

With these advantages, you surely would be thinking about installing a tankless water heater in your home. We at Huntington Beach Plumbing could help you. We have the right experience when it comes to doing this kind of job. It would certainly be our pleasure to help you and maintain your new heating system so it would last longer.

Preparing for Disposal Installation

Posted on: January 7th, 2014 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

 

The process of garbage disposal installation and service becomes more relevant if homeowners are properly prepared for it.

Choosing the Right Disposal

Preparing for garbage disposal installation should begin with choosing the right type of garbage disposal for your needs.  The specific needs of every household must come into focus when selecting the brand and type of garbage disposal.

The people who will be using it and the other members of the household must all be taken into consideration.  This will be factored together with the type of plumbing in the household to ensure that the right type of garbage disposal is installed.  Other factors for consideration will include:

  • Children – if there are children in the household, then it should be made sure that the garbage disposal does not become a source of accidents.  We would recommend batch feed against continuous feed disposal units.  This is because batch feeds have stoppers that can be extremely safer for children.  Continuous feed disposals continue running for some time even when the switch is turned off, which can be dangerous for young children.
  • Motor – the size and capacity of the motor should be just right for the needs of your home to ensure that it remains efficient.  Smaller households that generate significantly less food waste can opt for lower horsepower motors.  Lower horsepower motors eat up smaller amounts of energy.
  • Features – it is a given that full-featured garbage disposal units will be more expensive than basic units.  However, you must make sure that the unit you are buying has the features that you need.  For example, you can opt for a stainless steel one or choose a unit that easily connects to the dishwasher of septic tank.

Tools and Supplies

Before starting any installation procedure, it is necessary to make sure that all the tools and supplies you will need are easily available and handy.  It is not practical to have to run to the hardware store in the middle of an installation job.

Make a checklist of all the tools and supplies that you will need to complete the installation procedure.  The list should include the following:

  • Screwdriver
  • Hacksaw
  • Disposer wrench
  • Plumber’s putty
  • Water pump pliers
  • Electrical cord
  • Goggles, dust mask, and other safety equipment

Cutting off the Supply

As a safety precaution, it is absolutely necessary to make sure that any and all power sources are turned off prior to any installation procedure.  This will help minimize the possibility of accidents while the unit is being installed.

Keep in mind as well that garbage disposal units work with both water and electricity, a mix that can be fairly dangerous when not properly handled.  Make sure that both are under control by cutting the water supply as well. You may also call Huntington Beach Plumbing now for expert services you can rely on!

Find and Deal with Slab Leak at home

Posted on: January 4th, 2014 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Leaks found under your concrete foundation are popularly termed as slab leak. This leak could either be in the drain lines or the water pipes. Wherever the leak comes from, it has to be addressed fast for it could result to a lot of damages in your property or inconvenience at home.  Leaks which are left unattended for a long time could cause big expense to homeowners.

Deal with leaks immediately

Since the leak is found under concrete foundation, dealing with it is very hard. It would not be a surprise if part of your concrete flooring would be damaged. You need to make sure that the plumbing contractor you hire is an expert when it comes to dealing with slab leaks so that damages could be minimized.

Leaks in your plumbing could result to a lot of expense, but if it could be detected early, any major damages could be avoided. As soon as you observe the signs that there is leak under your foundation, you need to immediately deal with it. Knowing the signs that slab leak are present could certainly help a lot.

Sudden increase in Water Bill

Among the most common sign that there is leak in your home is sudden increase in the water bill. You need to check your water consumption. If it is still the same as last month but your bill is way higher, most likely a leak is causing the increase.

The first thing to do is to seek for leaks in visible pipes. If you fail to find any, the leak is most likely in areas which you could not reach without using the right tools.

During this situation, the best option is to call a professional plumber. Do not anymore wait for another month to check if the water bill is still high for during this time, the leak might have caused a bigger damage than you could think.

Low Water Pressure

Water pressure is also affected when there is leak in the pipes. The bigger the leak, the more it could affect water pressure. This would result to a lot of frustrating times especially in the morning where water is very much needed for various purposes like cooking, bathing, cleaning and more.

Finding the leak first is very important. Since you don’t have the right skill and equipment to do so, it is best to leave this job to the experts. It is good to know that there are now a lot of plumbing contractors that offer their service in a very reasonable cost. You don’t have to spend that much in the leak detection and repair service you need.

If you seek quality service, call Huntington Beach Plumbing. We are certain that we could find the leaks in your pipes or drain and deal with it professionally. You don’t have to worry with our work since all the services we offer are guaranteed.

Common Causes of Leaks

Posted on: December 27th, 2013 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

 

The best way to identify and prevent leak repairs, both in and out of slabs is to understand the cause.

Soil Incompatibility

In general, when a leak has been determined to occur under a slab, there are many options on how to fix it.  However, understanding the best choice to take would depend on the actual cause of the problem.

Many homeowners are not aware that soil incompatibility can result in slab leaks.  The reality is that the ingredients in the soil may cause some type of chemical reaction when it comes in contact with certain piping materials; specifically copper pipes.  The resulting reaction is what is known as electrolysis.

Electrolysis does not happen instantly.  In fact, it may take some months or even years after initial pipe installation before it can manifest itself.  The important thing to understand is that this is one of the most common causes of complete replacement of under slab water lines.  Usually, a complete repiping would be recommended when this happens.

Lack of Pipe Wrapping

In many homes, there are plenty of exposed pipes that are not properly wrapped with protection.  This opens up the possibility of having it come in contact with other unprotected lines like heating duct work, electrical conduits, or concrete reinforcement rebar.

Hot water lines have the tendency to move a bit when being used.  Sometimes, as the water experiences a change in temperature, there will be an expanding and contracting motion.  This motion is responsible for the creation of friction that can wear through.

Kinked lines are other also common cause of concern.  The indentation caused usually by accident will eventually wear through with the force of the movement of water.  This may not be immediate, but will happen sometime if not properly fixed.

Rust and Corrosion

Another common reason that leaks, both in and out of slabs can occur is due to rust and corrosion.  This is something inevitable depending on the type of plumbing material being used in your home.

Usually, majority of plumbing materials are designed to last for approximately 50 years at the most.  As the piping material ages, its protective coating disintegrates allowing corrosion and ultimately rusts to eat into the lining.

As the pipe lining begins to thin out, the pipe becomes more prone to leaks that will eventually have a substantial impact on the entire home plumbing system.  Replacement of pipes would normally be in order depending on the actual condition of the line with leaks.

We can do periodic checkups of your entire home plumbing system to make sure that leak repairs, both in and out of slabs are done immediately. Call Huntington Beach Plumbing today!

Tracing Poor Water Pressure

Posted on: December 19th, 2013 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

 

To be able to properly begin restoration of water pressure, it is important to identify its initial cause.

The Water Meter

In an average home plumbing configuration, the most common cause of poor water pressure can be traced to the water meter.  Although water pressure problems can come in many forms, you need to realize that all plumbing fixtures and appliances inside your home traces back to the water meter.  Therefore, it is the first logical place to check.

Check if the water meter is turned all the way to the on position.  It can happen that the water meter is turned off and then not properly turned back on, which can account for the poor water pressure.  Try to turn off the water meter as well as then turn it back on.  This will test if the valve is working or not, which may be causing the poor water pressure.

Since you are already at the water meter, it is also a good idea to check the main shutoff valve as well.  If nothing is wrong with the water meter, then the problem may lie in a busted or defective main shutoff valve.  Check to see first if it is turned all the way on as well.

Main shutoff valves normally come in gate valve or ball valve types.  For gate valves, turn it all the way in a clockwise direction.  For ball valves, make sure that the handle is parallel to the pipe.  This will ensure that your main shutoff valve is fully open.

If this does not solve your water pressure problem, we can conduct a more thorough inspection of your plumbing system.

Pressure Regulators

Aside from shutoff valves, another cause of concern when it comes to poor water pressure is the pressure regulators in your home.  When water pressure regulators begin to fail, you will begin to experience extreme water pressures.  This can create poor water pressure distribution in your plumbing fixtures and appliances.

Pressure regulators are not normally fixed, but replaced.  It is best to call us to do this important job because in many instances, the replacement should match the size and brand of the pressure regulator.  Replacing a busted pressure regulator would certainly restore water pressure to normal levels.  We regularly check for other causes before recommending replacement of plumbing system components.

Degraded Pipes

If the problem is not with the shutoff valves or the pressure regulators, then the most sensible component to check would have to be your pipes.  You need to be aware that as pipes get older its efficiency becomes severely degraded.  This is extremely true when dealing with galvanized pipes.  We can replace your pipes. Call us today!

Preparing for Copper Re-piping

Posted on: December 13th, 2013 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Despite cheaper alternatives, re-piping with copper pipes remains the most practical solution for majority of households.

The Benefits of Copper

Once you are faced with the problems of low water pressure, discolored water discharge, and widespread slab leaks, we recommend that your existing plumbing system should undergo repiping.  This will eliminate many of the unwanted problems and consequences like mold and mildew growth for example.  To ensure that you get the most benefit from replacing your old pipes, it is best to use copper piping material.  It provides you benefits that include:

  • Lesser problems with water pipes
  • More durable potable water distribution system
  • Preserves the quality of water in your home
  • Increases the market value of your property
  • Higher quality plumbing material
  • Potentially eliminates the need to repipe for the next hundred years

Copper Re-piping Timeframe

It is so easy to install copper pipes in virtually every type of home.  A full copper re-piping installation will usually last anywhere from 1 to 2 days at the most.  The installation process will not interfere with your daily routine like:

  • Taking a shower
  • Washing clothes
  • Doing the dishes
  • Relaxing in the tub
  • Other activities that involve your plumbing

The installation process is also generally non-invasive so you can stay in your home without being bothered too much.  There is also no need to worry about drillings and excavations because we have plumbing experts and touch up artists who can put everything back the way it was before, and sometimes even better.  In just a few days, the full functionality of your plumbing system is restored.

Expectations After Re-piping

The truth is that there are many positive changes that can happen after completion of copper re-piping.  The changes can vary depending on the previous condition of your plumbing.  However, in general, noticeable improvements will include:

  • Dramatic increase in water pressure
  • Better water quality and taste
  • Cleaner water for dishwashers, washing machines, and showers
  • Fewer incidents of leaks
  • More responsive plumbing system

Things to do before re-piping

There are certain things that must be done before re-piping jobs can be started.  This is part of the preparation process that we undergo to ensure that all possible questions and apprehensions are completely and satisfactorily covered.  Once you have called on us for your re-piping needs, we must do the following:

  • Complete a free estimate
  • Conduct thorough examination of your home and plumbing system
  • Discuss other problems, if any, and explain the scope of work
  • Address additional concerns
  • Schedule the timeframe for starting and completing the re-piping

This should cover all the bases when it comes to replacing your old non-functional pipes.  We at Huntington Beach Plumbing can assure you that you will get the best value for your money by re-piping with copper pipes.

Repiping to Deal with problems in Water lines

Posted on: December 5th, 2013 by huntingtonbeachplumber No Comments

Homeowners should now be more responsible when it comes to taking care of their plumbing system.  It is not a good practice to remember your plumbing only when problems occur. You need to make sure that you know the signs that something is not right in your plumbing. With this, proper and immediate remedy could be made to stop any damages from getting worse. Most of the time, when problems in the plumbing has become severe, a repiping is needed.

Signs of troubles in the plumbing system:

  • low water pressure
  • water taste strange
  • slow draining in plumbing fixtures
  • frequent clog in drains

If you observe any of these problems, it is important that you immediately address the issue before you face serious damages in the future. These issues could occur in any of the plumbing lines in your home which could either be in the drain lines or water lines. Though most of the problem occurs in the drain lines, it does not mean that water lines would not experience plumbing issues.

The importance of copper pipes

Today, water lines in a household are made of copper pipes. This is because it has a lot of advantages. For old homes, usually it still uses steel or galvanized pipes. There are issues that surround these types of pipe. Steel pipes easily corrode which significantly affects the quality of water.  Galvanized pipes are also prone to mineral buildup.  Even though it does not easily corrode, mineral buildup is still a major concern.

For old homes, a copper pipe repiping is needed. The good thing about copper material is it does not corrode and mineral buildup is not a common experience.

Preventive Measures

If you wanted to prevent any unnecessary increase in your water bill, you have to make sure that your pipes get regular maintenance. This way, any minor leak issues could be treated immediately while it is still in its initial stage.

Well-maintained pipes could also make your appliances work better like the dishwasher and water heater.  This regular maintenance could also ensure that you get cleaner and healthier water for home use.

Copper pipes are very much popular today due to its many benefits. This type of pipe could ensure that you will not be wasting your money in the investment of a dependable plumbing system.

To determine if your property needs repiping, you have to call the experts to do the job. Huntington Beach Plumbing could certainly help. We have enough experience when it comes to repiping jobs. Our plumbers are skilled enough and are well-equipped to deal with such task professionally.

Contact us now to get an estimate on the possible amount you have to spend for the repiping. Our professional and friendly staffs online would ensure that your queries are gladly taken.

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