If you are putting your home on the market, you want to make sure that you are doing everything you can to increase its resale value, both in the eyes of the appraiser and the potential buyers. There are many things a person can do to accomplish this. From large projects to small; DIY to hiring contractors, who doesn’t want an upgrade? There is one inexpensive way to increase value that we will discuss in this post and it is updating your faucets. It seems like a small thing, right? Well, sometimes it’s the small details that make a big impact.
DIY projects have been gaining major popularity over the last several years. People are doing their own home repairs, landscaping, car maintenance-the list goes on. Yes, Google and YouTube have really been helping us out lately. There are even some DIY plumbing projects you can do. For some of us, DIY plumbing doesn’t go any further than unclogging a toilet. The braver folk do things like replacing shower heads, install or replace a faucet aerator, caulk a tub, and more. So what is the limit here? This is what we will be discussing today: when to do it yourself and when to call a plumbing professional.
Quality plumbing in your home is absolutely crucial in keeping it up and running. Leaky pipes and flooding are things no homeowner wants to deal with but waiting too long can make the difference between allowing mold to develop and getting your home back in shape. Maintaining your plumbing should be something you do frequently – just like routinely getting your air conditioning and furnace check, you should be doing the same with your plumbing (especially if you live in an older home). Even the simplest issue can develop into something much worse without the proper action taken to remedy it when it comes to plumbing, which is why keeping an eye on standing water or leaks is incredibly important.
With the rise in DIY plumbing videos, you might be tempted to try to gather the supplies you might need to fix a plumbing issue on your own. However, it is very important that you leave this up to professionals to fix. While there are many other home improvement projects you can complete on your own, plumbing often is not one of them simply because the impact a simple mistake can make on the rest of your household. Professional plumbers have the experience and know-how to fix your plumbing leaks or floods quickly and safely, with the least amount of worry on your end. The number one priority for a plumbing issue is safety, as one wrong thing can potentially contaminate the water flowing through your home.
You don’t have to worry about finding the time to do it on your own, and you never have to worry about the quality of work being done when using a professional Boise plumber. Rather than trying to fix an issue you have never handled before (that is likely putting your home life on hold as you and your family are unable to use your bathroom or kitchen), leave it up to the professionals to determine exactly what is wrong instead of guessing at it. Additionally, on the off chance that something does happen, you know your home is protected when using a plumber as they have the insurance to cover your property. When around old pipes and toilets, most don’t like the chance of coming into contact with sewage which is why most trust a plumber to handle the sometimes-dirty job.
Finding a trustworthy Boise plumber is critical in getting your issue fixed quickly and satisfactorily. In order to find one, though, you should be looking for a few things: license, experience, insurance, and a guarantee (not necessarily in that order, although they should all be things a good plumber will have). Using a licensed plumber ensures that the person has actually gone through the correct channels to learn what he or she needs to know for the field. When people use people that are not licensed, there is a great chance that work done will not be up to par.
The plumber you choose should also be covered completely under an insurance policy. Even though your homeowner’s insurance should have some sort of protection as well, your plumber should have worker’s comp and liability insurance that protects you if he or she is somehow hurt in your home while working. This should go for any worker that you allow into your house as well – not only plumbers.
Using an experienced plumber should also be a no-brainer. The more experience a plumber has, the more prepared they will be for surprises inside your home. You can usually expect a guarantee to be provided by a seasoned plumber simply because they are confident in their ability to fix any plumbing issue that might arise. They will tend to offer warranties on the services they provide as well. While it might be cheaper to use a plumber with no experience, you also might be gambling with getting bad work completed by someone you can’t trust to handle the delicate pipes within your home.
There are quite a few ways to find a plumber that will meet your needs and requirements, but often the best way to start is by asking your friends and family. When you can directly see the impact that a plumber has had directly with someone you know, they develop so much more credibility than a complete stranger. If you don’t know anyone close to you that has used a professional plumber lately, look on social media and online.
Often, more established plumbing companies will have well-written information on their websites and social media pages that explains the benefits of using them over other companies. Find a few that you like based off of this search, and then ask for them to give you a quote on your specific plumbing issue. While it often isn’t recommended to base your decision solely on the cheapest quote (as this can sometimes correlate to lower quality work), it can help you to narrow your choice down. Feel free to ask for testimonials from past work they have done in the Boise area to prove their quality, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Make sure the plumber you choose to go with has all of their credentials and proof of insurance as well.
When it is time to ask a plumber to come to your home, it can be a stressful time. Because most plumbing issues can have very negative effects if not treated quickly and efficiently, making sure you have a quality plumber to call at a moment’s notice is very helpful. Our team is full of experienced Boise plumbers ready to fix any plumbing issues you might have. Contact Five Star Pros today to learn more about our licensed, insured professionals along with the process we take to ensure the highest quality services are only provided by our team members.
None of us are immune to plumbing issues. There will come a time when we need a plumber and we need one now! The question then turns to “who to hire?” Hiring a local plumber versus a chain or franchise makes sense. Here are a few reasons why it makes more sense to hire a local plumber in Boise.
It is very frustrating when the water does not flow like it is supposed to! It is even more frustrating when we cannot fix it ourselves. We have exhausted all our efforts with the plungers and chemicals and still no luck. What now? The toughest clogs typically require professional help to get the water moving again. Plumbers with experience in drain cleaning and clog clearing have better equipment and skills to get the job done right. It is not your fault that you could not get it cleared. Sometimes you just must know when to throw in the towel! Why should you call a plumber? Here are a few reasons.
Plumbing emergencies tend to come at the worst time. That’s because there’s no good time to have sewage backing up into your backyard. Fortunately, most plumbing emergencies do not begin as emergencies. First, they’re small annoyances that compound and get worse. For example, you might have one clogged sink that you don’t think about too much. Before long, you might have a clogged sewer drain and a very messy situation. Your best option is to clear and clean your drains regularly. You should have professional plumbers do this.
There are dozens of different products that purport to allow you to clean your own drains. You should avoid these for a few reasons. Chemical drain cleaners are made from harsh chemicals that are designed to dissolve hair, toilet paper, and other clogging materials. Those chemicals can score your pipes. That means they can leave tiny dents and scratches in your pipes. Those dents and scratches work just like rough-sanding a piece of wood. They make the pipes more likely to grab material as it flows through the drain. That could make your next clog even worse.
Furthermore, those materials can eat away at plastic and rubber. Some drains have PVC pipes or rubber grommets. If those are degraded, they’ll eventually fail. Lastly, a professional will be able to better assess the overall health of your pipes.
Professionals clean your drains in a few ways. An auger is a flexible tool that snakes into your drain. It grabs clogs and pulls them out. That’s an effective way to clear a solid clog. Augers also scrape the sides of your pipes to clear away debris. Also, professionals might hydro-jet your pipes. That means they’ll blow highly pressurized water through the pipes to force clogs and debris through the drains and into the sewer. Several types of drain systems actually have a blowout valve. So, the experts can open the blowout valve and literally blow debris out of your pipes.
Lastly, the plumbers might use cameras that snake into the drains. That allows them to actually look at the condition of your pipes. They’ll be able to see where pipes might be corroded, where debris might build up and anything else that needs attention. If they’re able to see those things, they can then address them before they become big problems.
If you have only one clogged drain, you actually might be able to clear that yourself. For example, a ball of hair in your shower drain can be pulled out with a store-bought drain snake. However, if you have frequent clogs or if that doesn’t completely clear the drain, you’ve likely got a bigger issue. You need a professional for that.
If you have multiple clogged drains, that could be a sign that the clog is farther down in the pipes. You’ll need a professional to get deeper into the system and clear out the drains. Lastly, if you’ve got smelly drains, you’ll need a professional. That could be a sign that sewage is already backing up in the pipes. You could be a few days away from a plumbing emergency.
The best way to avoid an emergency is to call a Boise drain cleaning service at the first sign of trouble and then having them clean your drains on a regular basis.
There are certain elements of plumbing problems that are beyond your control. What goes down the drain is completely within your control. You can decide what does and does not go into your drain. That’s one of the biggest factors in a plumbing emergency.
Many people who have a garbage disposal in their kitchen sink think that they can just pour whatever they want down the drain and then grind it with the disposal. Garbage disposals are designed to grind up the last scraps of food, not large amounts of food. Your best option is to scrape your plates and cookware into the trash can. Your garbage disposal can still be overwhelmed if you put too much food in the drain.
Several types of bathroom wipes, makeup removers, and baby wipes are billed as “flushable.” They are, however, not flushable. Toilet paper is flushable because it breaks down when it sits in water. You can see this any time you try to clean up a spill with toilet paper. Flushable wipes are designed to hold their texture while they’re moist; that’s the exact opposite of what you want in something that goes down the toilet. They will hold their texture and then catch on other things in the drain. Eventually, you’ll have a clog.
Paper towels might seem like they’re about the same as toilet paper, but they’re not. Paper towels are marketed as “strong” against spills, which means that moisture won’t cause them to tear apart. You want everything in your drain to fall apart quickly when it gets wet. Don’t flush paper towels; throw them in the trash.
Some old advice says to run some coffee grounds through your toilet or your sink. The abrasive nature of the grounds is supposed to scrape your pipes clean. That’s not at all what happens. Instead, the grounds clump together; you can see this whenever you dump grounds in the trash. Moist grounds cling together. They’ll attach to fat and other substances in the pipes to create a clog.
Fat is one of the biggest culprits in clogged pipes. The fat that is solid at room temperature will become liquid when heated. After cooking, many people dump the liquid fat down the drain. It then cools back into a solid. That solid creates clogs. Pour the fat into a sealed container and throw it away, or wait for it to cool and then dump it in the trash.
As homeowners look for different ways to reduce their carbon footprint and cut down on their water bills, many of them are turning to rainwater plumbing. Rainwater plumbing is exactly what it sounds like. It is the process of collecting rainwater and using that in your home’s plumbing. The simplest process involves a collection tank and a series of pipes to different fixtures. Since the rainwater is not treated, it’s not potable but it can be used in most other circumstances. You can also add a pump and a filtration system to use the rainwater barrel like a well.
The simplest rainwater setup typically involves a barrel that is connected to your home’s gutters. The gutters collect water and funnel it into the rain barrel. The barrel has an overflow pipe at the top. So, when it gets too full, it will siphon water safely away from your house as your gutters would normally. The pipe at the bottom will feed into your house. Typically, you have a pump there that pumps water to different fixtures.
Rainwater can be used in your washing machine, your toilets, mop sinks, and anywhere that the water is not ingested. You don’t want to use it for your shower. Even though that water isn’t specifically for drinking, it can be accidentally ingested. You want that to be only potable water.
If you want to use rainwater in all of your home’s fixtures, you’ll need a more complex setup. That more complex setup will still have the collection tank and the pump that feeds different fixtures. There will be an intermediate step, though. That’s the water filtration system. The water filtration system will filter out physical impurities with activated carbon. Most of them then kill bacteria and viruses with UV light. At that point, the water is safe to drink. Some of them use a tiny amount of salt to help purify the water.
These two options are only applicable in places where it is legal to collect rainwater. Certain municipalities don’t allow it. Also, you will likely still need a municipal water supply because rainwater amounts can vary so drastically. If this sounds like something that might be right for you, you should get in touch with a plumber who has worked with rainwater collection before. They’ll be able to set up your system in the most efficient way possible.
There is no good time to have your plumbing fail, but it does seem to always happen at the most inopportune time. Many people know the horror of waking up to find their entire basement flooded or to have the floor sink in an entire section of the kitchen. These plumbing disasters are awful and expensive. They are, however, preventable. You just need to know how to avoid them.
Many homeowners are rethinking how much water they use in their homes. They’re making considerations based on the environmental impact of using excess water as well as the simple cost of running all that water. To that end, many are turning to low-flow fixtures. These are plumbing fixtures that use less water than traditional fixtures to hopefully achieve the same results. There are a few different kinds of low-flow fixtures, though.
Old toilets used as much as five gallons of water to flush. Except for very old homes, those have pretty much disappeared. The new standard for toilets is 1.6 gallons per flush. Research indicates that each person flushes the toilet about five times per day. So, that’s eight gallons of water used each day per person. That’s a significant amount of water. Some newer low-flow toilets use as little as a half gallon of water to flush the toilet. Many of them have two different settings. There’s a reduced water flush feature and a full water flush feature. That can cut your water consumption by several gallons every day. For a household, it could be as much as a dozen gallons of water saved each day.
Low-flow showerheads work in one of two ways. Some of them use smaller and more numerous openings. They spray thinner jets of water but many more of them to achieve the same amount of water coverage while using less water. More complex showerheads actually inject water into the flow. So, that will space out the drops of water somewhat while providing them with more force. It will feel like more water because the water is less dense.
Standard showerheads use as much as five gallons of water per minute. The average shower is eight minutes long. That’s forty gallons of water for an average shower. Many people shower much longer. A low-flow showerhead will consume between .5 and two gallons of water per minute. That could cut your water consumption by more than half.
Low flow sinks are typically paired with an aerator. An aerator injects air into the flow of water much like the aerated showerheads. That will allow you to get your dishes clean without using as much water. The water pressure and the spread of water is more important to cleaning dishes than the sheer volume of water.
Any of these can reduce your environmental footprint and save you money in the long run.