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Dealing With a Clogged Drain

 

Clogged drains are a nuisance any time of the year, but especially when family and friends are visiting. Even the most conscientious homeowner will most likely deal with clogged drains at some point, so below you’ll find some steps to remedy the situation:

A Plunger – Sometimes the best fix is the easiest. The plunger has been around for a long time and should still be your first step in dealing with a clogged drain. Fill the clogged sink about a quarter of the way with water. If you have a double vanity sink, block the opposite sink drain with a towel or rag. Next, place the plunger over the clogged drain, move it up and down quickly until the water starts to drain. Doing this should remove any small blockage.

Baking Soda and Vinegar – If the sink remains clogged after plunging, move on to the next tried and true method, baking soda and vinegar. You may remember these items being used in creating a volcano science project. The same premise works here, just in the opposite direction.

To do this, you will need to remove as much water as possible from the clogged sink. Then pour a cup of baking soda into the drain and use a handle from a spoon to pack it down into the drain pipe. Next, pour a cup of vinegar into the drain, replacing the stopper immediately. This will force the mixture down into the pipe. Allow the mixture to work for five minutes. If the drain is still not cleared, pour four cups of hot water into the sink.  At this point, if the drain is still clogged, then a more advanced step is required.

A Cable Auger – This next solution is more difficult and is best handled by a professional plumber. A cable auger (sometimes called a snake) can be used to remove the obstruction. Place a bucket under the sink to catch water, then detach the trap or J-joint underneath the sink that connects the pipe to the sink. Next, remove the pipe going into the wall. The cable auger can now be used to slowly slide down the pipe by spinning the crank clockwise. Once you reach the clog, turn the auger counter-clockwise to grab the cable, and hopefully, the obstruction. If all goes well, this will take care of your problem.

A Professional Plumber – At this point, if the drain cannot be unplugged, then it’s definitely time to call in the professionals.  Calling a plumber is important to avoid causing any damage to your pipes.

Remember that the drainage system in your home is a complex, engineered system.  Trying to clear a clogged drain from a small obstruction is something most homeowners can do.  However, it’s always best to leave it to the experts for the more complicated issues.  They know how to remove the problem while keeping your plumbing system in good working order.

Have more questions? Call us – we’d love to help! Call the professionals at Go Green Plumbing at 336-252-2999 for service 7 days a week/24 hours a day. If water runs through it – We Do It!

Easy Water Conservation For All by Go Green Plumbing

Water…so necessary to life, but something a lot of us take for granted.  When we need it, we turn a knob, push a button, or grab a bottle.  But what if you turn that knob, or push that button, and no water appears?  According to the US Government Accountability Office, 40 out of 50 states have at least one region that’s expected to have some kind of water shortage over the next 10 years.P16672369

With this issue looming ahead of us, now is the time to start looking at our water as the precious resource it is.  There are several small things we can change in our daily routine that can save thousands of gallons of water a year.  Below are a few suggestions to get you started on your water conservation path.

Bathrooms are a good starting place. 

  1. If you don’t have aerators on your faucets and shower heads, install them.  Aerators reduce the amount of water that flows through.
  2. Turn the water off while shaving or brushing teeth instead of running continuously.
  3. If replacing a toilet, purchase a low-flow toilet that requires less water to flush.
  4. Keep a bucket or watering can near your shower to catch water while waiting for it to warm up.  Then use the water to flush toilets or water houseplants.
  5. Shorten showers or turn the water off while soaping up or shaving legs for bigger water conservation.
  6.  The shower bucket idea can also be used in the kitchen.  Use a container to catch the colder water while waiting for the hot.  Then use later for cleaning, watering plants, or other food preparation.
  7. If you hand-wash dishes, fill-up your sink with dish water rather than washing under a running faucet.
  8. If replacing your dishwasher or washing machine, look for ones with Energy Star ratings.  And remember not running dishwashers and washing machines until you have full loads can save gallons of water.

Look for even small ways to prevent waste.  Water left in drinking glasses or water bottles?  Use to water house plants.  Keep your eyes and ears open for drippy faucets or leaks, or running toilets, and fix problems quickly.  Take your vehicles to car washes that recycle water.  A big gardener?  Install a rain barrel as the source to water your garden and plants. Keep in mind that energy plants are powered by water, so conserving energy is another way to save on water.

Becoming conscious of the water we are using will help us to look for other ways to conserve on our water usage.  Let’s all pitch in to do what we can to take care of this precious resource we all rely on.

Have more questions? Call us- we’d love to help! Call the professionals at Go Green Plumbing at 336-252-2999 for service 7 days a week/24 hours a day.  If water runs through it – We Do It!

 

Do Water Filters Matter? by Go Green Plumbing

Do you know how often to change your water filter in your refrigerator?

If not, check your refrigerator manual which may say to replace the filter every 6 to 12 months.  You will want to check your specific product manual for a general guide for replacement.  However, what if you have a household of 5 instead of the 2 in my household?  As with all filtering systems, replacement is not based on a number of persons, but the amount of usage.  My husband and I are big water drinkers, so we would need to consider changing our filter more often than a larger family that doesn’t consume as much water or ice as we do.maxresdefault

But what about that “water filter indicator light” on the refrigerator door?  Again, that indicator is based on time, not on usage of the filter.  Water filters help to provide us with cleaner drinking water, so it is important to replace them when needed, but since they are not cheap we don’t want to replace them before necessary.

One way to determine if the filter needs changing is by the taste of your water or ice.  If you notice a difference in the taste of your water, or start to smell an unpleasant odor, your filter is probably not removing all contaminates and will need to be changed.  Another way to know is if your ice maker is no longer making single ice cubes, but producing larger cube junks.  Your water filter being full can also cause a reduction in your water flow.

One thing to remember when putting in a new water filter is the need to flush out the new filter.  Small particles from the filter can become dislodged during manufacturing or shipping, and come through in the first glasses of water consumed.  You would just want to run 3 to 5 gallons of water through the dispenser before consuming any water yourself.  If you have just an ice maker, then discard the first couple of batches of ice.  You can again consult your refrigerator manual for their specific recommendation on this procedure.

Have questions about water or plumbing issues in your home?  Give us a call. We’re happy to discuss.  Call the professionals at Go Green Plumbing at 336-252-2999 for service 7 days a week/24 hours a day.  If water runs through it – We Do It!

 

How to Maintain Your Plumbing

We all know that maintenance is important for a lot of things around us.  Regular maintenance on our vehicles keep them in running good running order.  Changing filters on our heating and air units regularly helps get us through the hottest and coldest days of the year.  We even maintain ourselves when we get our regular, yearly checkouts at our doctor.  But have you ever thought that your plumbing needs maintenance as well?  As with anything else, our plumbing can benefit from regular maintenance and can prevent costly repairs in the future.Peteonfloor-555x390

Start with an inspection of your plumbing.  Look at the plumbing under your sinks and toilets for any signs of leaks or moisture.  Some condensation on cold metal pipe on hot, humid days is to be expected, so you would want to reinspect at another time when the house is cooler to determine if it is normal condensation or a small leak. Check around the base of your toilet for water stains or darker grout lines that can indicate a slow leak either from a broken wax ring or flange under your toilet.

Check all faucets and shower heads to monitor water pressure.  There may be some difference between faucets styles, but all should have a stead flow of water.  Pay attention to the water as it drains from your sinks and tubs.  Slow drainage can be a sign of a clog or build up in your pipes.  You will want to remove and clean aerators on faucets and shower heads to flush out any sediment build up that can slow water flow.

You will also want to check pipes on your water heater for moisture or leaks.  Be sure and check around the base of the water heater for water stains or puddles.  Your inspection will want to include your garbage disposals to check for loosened connections or signs of clogs.  If you are on a crawl space, look for signs of leaks around joints and connections on your plumbing.  Don’t forget to check the water lines and area around your washing machine, refrigerator and dishwasher.

Repairs to any leaks or wet areas discovered during your inspection is important.  The longer a leak continues the more damage to your walls, flooring and home.  Some issues may simply require tightening a fitting or nut bolt.  Others may require calling a professional to determine what needs to be repaired.  So schedule your plumbing for an annual checkup, either by you or your certified plumber.  It is necessary for the proper working of your plumbing system, and good protection from major plumbing issues in the future.

Have plumbing issues?  Call the professionals at Go Green Plumbing at 336-252-2999 for service 7 days a week/24 hours a day.  If water runs through it – We Do It!