Powells-plumbing.com https://powells-plumbing.com Mon, 07 Oct 2019 17:40:25 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.3 Fall Plumbing Tips for Your Home https://powells-plumbing.com/fall-plumbing-tips-for-your-home/ https://powells-plumbing.com/fall-plumbing-tips-for-your-home/#respond Mon, 07 Oct 2019 17:40:01 +0000 https://powells-plumbing.com/?p=48605 Now that fall is here, it’s time to prepare your home’s plumbing for winter. There are two main things that should be done before temperatures drop: insulate and prep pipes and faucets, and annual maintenance of your water heater. Take the time to check your home and know where your pipes are exposed or otherwise […]

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Now that fall is here, it’s time to prepare your home’s plumbing for winter. There are two main things that should be done before temperatures drop: insulate and prep pipes and faucets, and annual maintenance of your water heater.

Take the time to check your home and know where your pipes are exposed or otherwise at risk of freezing. Unheated areas like garages and crawl spaces need to be insulated, as well as outdoor pipes or faucets. Styrofoam, heat tape, and thermostat-controlled heat cables can be used to protect them. Hoses can be emptied and stored until spring, while other outdoor plumbing, like irrigation, can be emptied and shut off to prevent freezing.

Annual maintenance of your water heater will make it last longer, as well as increase its efficiency. Flush the tank to remove any sediment and increase your hot water supply, while also protecting components from being corroded. Test the pressure relief valve to make sure it’s working properly to protect your home from water heater leaks. For specific maintenance instructions for your water heater, check the manufacturer’s website. If you discover your water heater is in need of repair or replacement, call 540-665-8196 to schedule your appointment today.

Should your pipes burst despite your efforts to protect them, turn off the water immediately and call us at Powell’s Plumbing. Our trained staff will address your situation quickly and make it right in as short a time as possible.

 

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Plumbing Tips for Home Renters https://powells-plumbing.com/plumbing-tips-for-home-renters/ https://powells-plumbing.com/plumbing-tips-for-home-renters/#respond Wed, 31 Jul 2019 15:10:49 +0000 http://powells-plumbing.com/?p=48546   Do you rent a home? Understand that not all plumbing services are covered and paid for by the landlord. Talk to your landlord. Make sure you both agree on who is covering the costs of a plumbing issue. You should always review any rental agreement before making any assumption. If you are the responsible […]

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Do you rent a home? Understand that not all plumbing services are covered and paid for by the landlord. Talk to your landlord. Make sure you both agree on who is covering the costs of a plumbing issue. You should always review any rental agreement before making any assumption. If you are the responsible party to fix a plumbing concern, here are some basic suggestions and tips.

Ask a professional. Try to avoid using the DIY method as this could cause a larger plumbing concern. As a preventative tip, look towards getting familiar with simple plumbing repairs like plunging. No one likes a smelly toilet, especially any company that visits. Just remember some things you cannot flush. 

Take care of your drains by using strainers to catch unwanted waste like hair and food from entering and clogging your drain pipes. Also remember to empty your garbage disposals. 

Take measures to ensure your pipes do not freeze in the winter. When water freezes, it expands, leading to pipes bursting and needing replaced. These simple tasks could save you lots of money. You could even attempt to lower your bills by adjusting your water temperature on your hot water heater. Make sure to check the industry standard water temperature.   

If you need help with a plumbing issue in your rented home, contact us today. Our experienced team is happy to be of service! 

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Common Plumbing Mistakes New Homeowners Make https://powells-plumbing.com/buying-your-first-house-common-plumbing-mistakes-new-homeowners-make/ Tue, 02 Jul 2019 15:02:48 +0000 https://powells-plumbing.com/?p=5087 The post Common Plumbing Mistakes New Homeowners Make appeared first on Powells-plumbing.com.

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Buying a new home or your first home is an exciting undertaking! Through the process of selecting the house, making an offer, and closing there are many details to remember. After moving into the house, the little details never stop and many new homeowners often become overwhelmed as they navigate finances and projects on the house. An important area of the home where new homeowners often make mistakes is with their plumbing. At Powell’s Plumbing, we want you to have all the information you need to avoid making costly plumbing mistakes.

Below are a list of common plumbing mistakes new homeowners make and how to avoid them.

1. Forgetting to turn the water off: Although replacing a showerhead or faucet is a fairly simple fix for even novice homeowners, many forget to start with the first step: turning off the water. Without turning off the water, you can end up with a face full of pressurized water and in worst case scenarios, water damage to your new home. When beginning even minor plumbing-related projects, always remember to turn off the water first.

2. Ignoring small issues: While there is a lot to keep track of when moving into a new home, it is important to not ignore even seemingly small issues. A leaky faucet or clogged drain could lead to bigger, more expensive problems in the future.

3. Using the wrong tools: Appliances and equipment often times require specialty tools in different sizes in order to ensure proper installation. Before selecting your tools and attempting to do an installation, make sure you have measured the parts and chosen the right size and type of tool for the job. This can reduce the risk of costly plumbing errors.

4. Not having a plumbing inspection: Even though a home inspector can tell you the general condition of your plumbing system during your home inspection prior to purchase, they may not be experts and could miss certain issues. After purchasing your home, it is vital to have an experienced plumber inspect your system and make sure everything is in working order.

If you are a new homeowner, the experienced team at Powell’s Plumbing is here for you. If you need to schedule an inspection or have questions about your Winchester home’s plumbing, reach out to us today.

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Signs You Have Roots in Your Pipes https://powells-plumbing.com/signs-you-have-roots-in-your-pipes/ Mon, 17 Jun 2019 15:55:21 +0000 https://powells-plumbing.com/?p=5071 Signs You Have Roots in Your Pipes   For many, owning a home with a green yard and full grown trees is the ultimate dream. You can hang up your summer hammock for relaxing afternoons and their shade can help cut back on air conditioning costs. But one of the least considered parts of having […]

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Signs You Have Roots in Your Pipes

 

For many, owning a home with a green yard and full grown trees is the ultimate dream. You can hang up your summer hammock for relaxing afternoons and their shade can help cut back on air conditioning costs. But one of the least considered parts of having trees is the unfortunate side effect of potential roots in your sewer lines or gutter drains. Throughout the year, but especially in the spring and summer, we get calls from concerned homeowners around the Northern Shenandoah Valley, NOVA and the Panhandle of WV that are having ongoing plumbing issues that end in us clearing roots from their home’s underground pipes.

Today, we want to help you identify the issue before it becomes a serious problem. Here are a number of signs that you have roots in your home’s plumbing.

Gurgling Toilets and Slow Drains 

This means that your water is flowing very slowly. Although this is a sign of any major blockage, if a simple snake doesn’t help then a tree is a likely culprit. 

Your Home Smells

When a sewage line is blocked by roots it can cause unpleasant odors and sometimes, the sewage itself, to back up into your home. 

Rapid Tree Growth

This is especially applicable for long-time homeowners. Trees are thirsty and cracking into a gutter drain can give them access to a tremendous source of water. 

Sinkholes

Though it takes a bit of time to form a sinkhole, sudden depressions in your yard can be a sign that the water line at least has a leak and is eroding your yard from the bottom up. In addition, the extra water can cause root rot, damaging your trees.

 

If you live in the Northern Shenandoah Valley, NOVA or the Panhandle of WV [and think that your home might be suffering from roots blocking your sewer lines or gutter drains, call Powell’s Plumbing today for a video pipe inspection . We offer a range of plumbing services to keep your pipes clear and your house happy.

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Maintaining Your Pipes During Spring https://powells-plumbing.com/maintaining-your-pipes-during-spring/ Wed, 08 May 2019 22:13:56 +0000 https://powells-plumbing.com/?p=5058 Here at Powell’s Plumbing, we want to talk about the regular spring cleaning task of cleaning out pipes. With spring in the air, the windows can be opened and cleaning products used in abundance. But be careful! Many types of drain cleaner to get the job done can add big costs down the line by […]

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Here at Powell’s Plumbing, we want to talk about the regular spring cleaning task of cleaning out pipes. With spring in the air, the windows can be opened and cleaning products used in abundance. But be careful! Many types of drain cleaner to get the job done can add big costs down the line by damaging the very pipes they are supposed to help.

If you need a DIY solution, we suggest using a variety of almost boiling water, baking soda and vinegar, or a drain snake. Most clogs come from excessive organic matter build up. That means it can be grease, hair, spit, foods, or even soap. The hot water rapidly breaks apart and destroys any built up residues. The baking soda and vinegar use the power of chemistry and acid to dissolve clogs overnight. The snake or a drain auger physically breaks up or dislodges a clog. Be careful though as improper use can push a clog further into the pipe instead of dislodging it.

For tougher clogs, DIY options rarely work. For these issues, call 540 665-8196 to schedule service with Powell’s Plumbing. Here in Winchester, VA we take real pride in our quick and always polite customer service. We have truly professional solutions that we use to knock out even the toughest clogs. Sometimes it’s important to know that the toughest clogs might not even be clogs. If we suspect this, we can help you diagnose the problem and get to the heart of the matter instead of charging you again and again for “fix it” visits. We are known for our attention to detail, professionalism, and our affordable rates with top notch workmanship.

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Spring Cleaning with Powell’s Plumbing https://powells-plumbing.com/spring-cleaning-with-powells-plumbing/ Wed, 03 Apr 2019 17:35:54 +0000 https://powells-plumbing.com/?p=4897 Spring is here at Powell’s Plumbing! The birds are singing and the trees are blooming in the Northern Shenandoah Valley and NOVA. A plumber is often one of the last people you think of when it comes to spring cleaning, but rest assured, we have our check list as well! Now that the cold of […]

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Spring is here at Powell’s Plumbing! The birds are singing and the trees are blooming in the Northern Shenandoah Valley and NOVA.

A plumber is often one of the last people you think of when it comes to spring cleaning, but rest assured, we have our check list as well! Now that the cold of winter is over, we can get focused on checking and fixing, if needed, any plumbing issues. In this month’s blog, we will go over everything you need to get through your plumbing checklist.

First, head outside. You want to check on the outdoor faucets, downspouts and your yard. Check to see if your outdoor faucets are dripping or leaking and turn them off and on. Then, if you have a sump pump, make sure that the hose is draining away from the house. And while you are out in the yard, check it and any surrounding area for sunken or flooded areas. This can tell you if water isn’t flowing away from the building or if you have piping issues running from your house.

Inside your home, run every faucet for a few minutes on hot and cold while watching the u-bend, drain pipe, and water lines to make sure nothing is leaking and no water damage or water stains have occurred. Next remove the p-trap of the drain and clean it out. This can help prevent clogs. Next, move on to the toilet and showers. Make sure that the toilet is flushing and draining well, and no extra water or sound of water is occurring for a prolonged time after you flush. Check the drains of the shower along with the shower head assembly. Again, look for leaks and water damage. If at any point, you detect an issue, see leakage or water damage, contact your local plumber.

If you live in NOVA or the Northern Shenandoah Valley of Virginia , West Virginia, or Maryland, contact Powell’s Plumbing for our local plumbing services and inspections. Contact your choice Winchester plumber today.

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How to Stop Your Leaking Toilet https://powells-plumbing.com/how-to-stop-your-leaking-toilet/ Wed, 23 Jan 2019 01:46:09 +0000 http://powells-plumbing.com/?p=4758 How to Stop Your Leaking Toilet When it comes to essentials fixtures in your home, your toilet is probably high on the list. Unfortunately, over time, these fixtures fall susceptible to damage and can leave you with plumbing issues. A leaking toilet is probably one of the more common issues you can deal with in […]

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How to Stop Your Leaking Toilet

leaking

When it comes to essentials fixtures in your home, your toilet is probably high on the list. Unfortunately, over time, these fixtures fall susceptible to damage and can leave you with plumbing issues.

A leaking toilet is probably one of the more common issues you can deal with in your bathroom. It also has a few different causes, which makes it tougher to diagnose for an inexperienced homeowner.

A rule of thumb is to always listen for the sound of running water when your toilet is not in use. If it happens often enough, it could be a sign that there’s a repair need on the horizon.

Luckily, this is a common enough problem, that there are plenty of helpful tips on how to diagnose and repair them, so read on to find out how you can help your home.

A Damaged or Warped Toilet Flapper Could be to Blame

flapperThe flapper inside your toilet is what allows what to flow from the tank into the bowl, and creates a blockage so your system can refill.

It’s a relatively simple design, often from rubber or silicone, but when it’s damaged, it could allow water to leak into your toilet. This is often what creates the sound of running water. The toilet flapper is responsible for creating a tight barrier against that inlet pipe.

If the flapper is warped, cracked, dirty, or otherwise ineffective, you’ll have leaking water and an overall drop in functionality with your toilet. These flappers are a common problem for many homeowners, which is why they can easily be replaced without the need for replacing your entire toilet.

What Other Issues Cause Running Toilets?

For many homeowners, your leaking toilet issues will end with a new flapper installation, but what do you do if they continue? There are a few other situations that could be causing this problem, and they include:

  • runningtoiletDamaged or faulty float.
  • Leaking water valve (behind the toilet).
  • Old fill valve (inside the toilet).
  • Broken or cracked porcelain.
  • Leaking seal at the base of the toilet.

While most of these problems are often small in scale, larger ones can actually be more of a problem for your home. Anytime you’re dealing with leaking water, you’re also dealing with the side effects, which can include water damage and mold growth.

What starts as a small puddle of water behind your toilet can quickly lead to a complete remodel. It’s always a good idea to pay close attention to your toilet to prevent emergency issues.

Trust in Toilet Maintenance

maintainFor the most part, homeowners are looking to save money, but in some instances, money can be well spent to prevent plumbing issues. Toilet maintenance is a must-have for all homeowners.

Not only does it keep your toilet working and flushing in top shape, but also it can help mitigate the risk of larger emergencies. For homeowners in Winchester, Powell’s Plumbing is here to help.

We offer expert toilet repairs, installations, and maintenance, including toilet flap replacements, and even offer helpful advice too. The next time you’re dealing with a problem, take the easy route and give us a call at (888) 550-1292.

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Homeowner’s Insurance & Water Damage: What’s Covered? https://powells-plumbing.com/homeowners-insurance-water-damage-whats-covered/ Thu, 20 Dec 2018 01:32:08 +0000 http://powells-plumbing.com/?p=4707 Homeowner’s Insurance & Water Damage: What’s Covered? Aside from a fire, water damage is probably one of the worst problems to have in your home. Growing up, we were lucky and really didn’t have many problems with our family home. There is one exception to this. After weeks of fighting a clogged toilet and slow […]

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Homeowner’s Insurance & Water Damage: What’s Covered?

insurance

Aside from a fire, water damage is probably one of the worst problems to have in your home. Growing up, we were lucky and really didn’t have many problems with our family home.

There is one exception to this. After weeks of fighting a clogged toilet and slow drains, one of the pipes broke and flooded the first floor of our house. Dad shut the water off and mom called the homeowner’s insurance.

To her dismay, she was greeted with a ton of questions about how long we had known about the clog and what we had done to fix it. At the time, we didn’t even realize the two were related. The insurance company declined our claim and the family was left paying for the damage.

Luckily, thanks to my dad’s fast reaction, the repairs that were needed were minimal and we were able to quickly move on with our lives. The lesson of this story is to not ignore leaks and other plumbing problems because willful ignorance is not covered under any insurance plan.

Professional Leak Detection: When to Call

Water leaks can be sneaky and difficult to detect. Oftentimes, there will be multiple other signs of a problem before any water is actually seen. This means that you should be aware of these signs so you can call a professional when needed:

  • leakdetectionHigher water bills than normal.
  • Sounds of rushing water when all faucets are off.
  • Musty smells.
  • Visible mold.
  • Damp spots on walls or ceilings.
  • Unexplained puddles of water on the floor.

Noticing any of these issues is a cause for a professional leak detection service. If you’re not sure, but your gut is telling you that there is a problem, don’t wait around. Call Powell’s Plumbing for electronic leak detection!

Broken Pipes: An Urgent Situation

brokenpipeAs you read earlier, a broken pipe doesn’t have to be caused by freezing temperatures. It can be caused by a major blockage in a pipe that causes the water pressure to become too great.

Regardless of the reason for the broken or burst pipe, the steps to take are the same. Upon noticing a broken or burst pipe, you will need to shut the water completely off. After this is taken care of, call a plumber and then call your homeowner’s insurance company.

Homeowner’s Insurance & Water Damage

waterdamageHomeowner’s insurance companies are there to help your family should the need arise.

However, if they paid every single claim that was received, there would be no money for the families that actually need it.

With this said, homeowner’s insurance companies are a lot less likely to pay claims that show ‘willful ignorance.’

This basically means that if you knew about a problem and chose not to fix it, you are at fault for the damages and they do not have any obligation to you. However, if you can prove that your pipes were in good working order and well-maintained but still had a major problem, chances are the insurance company will help pay for damages.

Homeowner’s Insurance is a Must!

homeownerinsuranceAlthough an insurance company can choose whether or not to pay a claim, they often make the decision based on whether or not the home has been maintained.

As long as you keep your plumbing and other major systems functioning as needed, any issues with them should be covered. This means that you will not have to pay out-of-pocket for major expenses as long as you are a responsible homeowner!

If you suspect that you have a water leak or clogged pipe, call Powell’s Plumbing today! We can detect any leaks and correct clogs before they become a major expense! Do you have a story about water damage and your homeowner’s insurance? Tell us about it in the comments!

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Backflow Devices Plumbers Recommend https://powells-plumbing.com/backflow-devices-plumbers-recommend/ Fri, 23 Nov 2018 01:06:19 +0000 http://powells-plumbing.com/?p=4578 Backflow Devices Plumbers Recommend While some homeowners have never heard of backflow, it’s one of the more serious plumbing issues you’d rather not hear about, to begin with. Backflow is the reversal of the flow of water in your plumbing system. Instead of water flowing away from your home, it flows back in, bringing contaminants […]

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Backflow Devices Plumbers Recommend

“prevention”
While some homeowners have never heard of backflow, it’s one of the more serious plumbing issues you’d rather not hear about, to begin with. Backflow is the reversal of the flow of water in your plumbing system.

Instead of water flowing away from your home, it flows back in, bringing contaminants and waste into your water supply and putting your family at risk.

Unlike other plumbing issues that are sometimes inevitable, backflow issues can easily be prevented by installing a prevention device in your home. There are plenty of options and we’ll discuss some of the best plumbing solutions to backflow.

What Causes a Back-Flow Issue?

Backflow is essentially the large-scale reversal in the flow of water in your home. In order for this to happen, it generally stems from a large scale issue. Some of the main reasons include:

“whatis”

  • Burst or Damaged Pipes: Whether it’s caused by some kind of construction damage or frozen pipes, when a pipe loose that amount of pressure that quickly, it could create back siphonage.
  • Flood Water: Backflow often happens after a storm because of the amount of excess water flowing around. If water reaches the flood line and goes over, it’ll create a reversal in pressure.
  • Improper Installation: There’s a reason DIY fixes may not always be the best. If something is installed poorly or incorrectly, cross-contamination can easily occur in your home.

Because you can’t determine whether there’s a backflow issue until it happens, the best plumbing practice is to have a backflow prevention device in place instead.

How do Air Gaps Work to Help?

“airgap”An air gap is either a built-in air pocket that is standard in your plumbing fixtures or an additional device that can be installed on your plumbing.

During normal operation, your plumbing system has enough water pressure to move water through the gap and into your fixtures. When that pressure is lower than normal, the flow is unable to pass, preventing back siphonage into your plumbing.

These devices help water keep going in the right direction and are always found in fixtures like kitchen sinks and faucets. The only restriction as a backflow device is that it’s limited to that specific fixture as opposed to the plumbing system as a whole.

Opt For a Pressure Vacuum Breaker Instead

“vacuumbreakers”On the higher end of backflow prevention devices are pressure vacuum breakers. These devices work like a check valve and are installed on your water mains – giving you a whole-home backflow solution.

These pressurized and mechanical devices work as a spring-operated check valve for your plumbing. With normal water pressure, the spring is held open allowing water to flow freely.

When the pressure drops, the spring expands, becoming a plug for your home’s plumbing. This restricts the flow completely, giving a plumber the chance to resolve the plumbing emergency before it affects your water supply.

The Best Device is The One That’s Right For You

“rightforhome”There are always going to be options when it comes to dealing with a backflow emergency.

Air gaps, PVB’s, reduced pressure zones, and other check valves. The only constant is the need for a trained plumber.

For homeowners in the Winchester area, Powell’s Plumbing is your go-to plumbing solution.

It’s important to work with a plumber that understands your system and how to set viable home-cleaning goals. Whether that’s drain cleaning or installing a backflow preventer and testing it regularly.

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Plumbing Costs in Relation to Service Quality https://powells-plumbing.com/plumbing-costs-and-service-quality/ Mon, 22 Oct 2018 01:44:22 +0000 http://powells-plumbing.com/?p=4530 Plumbing Costs in Relation to Service Quality It would be safe to assume that every plumbing company would charge slightly varying amounts for doing different jobs. However, it is wise to look a bit deeper into companies that charge significantly more or significantly less than their competition. When a company offers a plumbing service for […]

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Plumbing Costs in Relation to Service Quality

“plumbingaveragecosts”
It would be safe to assume that every plumbing company would charge slightly varying amounts for doing different jobs. However, it is wise to look a bit deeper into companies that charge significantly more or significantly less than their competition.

When a company offers a plumbing service for a much higher fee, you may assume the quality is superior but this is simply untrue. Oppositely when a service fee is extremely low, you may be dealing with less than quality workmanship or a complete scam.

The Cost of Leaky Pipes & Their Repairs

“leakrepaircost”When a pipe begins to leak, there are a number of signs. If you begin to witness any symptoms like wet spots on the wall, musty smells, saggy ceilings, or any other indicators, call Powell’s Plumbing immediately.

Failing to fix a leaking pipe can result in high repair bills from water damage as well as mold remediation to remove growing spores.

Luckily, repairing a leaking pipe is a relatively simple matter. Although this might not include the labor, the labor cost will be minimized by calling sooner rather than later.

Taking Care of Clogged Drains

“clogrepaircost”It isn’t a secret, clogged drains are annoying! While taking a shower, the water puddles up to your ankles or while brushing your teeth the sink almost completely fills.

These aren’t the only problems a clogged drain can cause though. Clogs can also be responsible for overflowing toilets, low water pressure, and even cracked pipes.

Over time these problems can become quite a hassle and you might look at snaking your drains or using chemical drain cleaners. Neither of these ideas can be considered good ones.

An untrained hand using a snake to remove a clog could potentially damage pipes. Chemical cleaners are even worse because they are bad for your pipes, the environment, and can cause burns on the skin, eyes, and lungs.

Luckily, having a professional remove a clog isn’t a complicated ordeal. If a clog is within reach of a drain snake, you can expect that job to be affordable. When the clog is stubborn or out of reach, hydrojetting is usually recommended, however, the prices are a bit higher.

This process uses a high-pressure stream of water to blast away the debris and blockages. The cost of hydro jetting often depends on the severity of the clog and the type of drain that needs the service.

Dripping Faucets Can be a Bigger Problem Than Realized

“drippingfaucet”The sounds of a constantly dripping faucet can be annoying at first. After a period of time, that noise may go unnoticed and the problem is forgotten.

Unfortunately, just because it is forgotten, the problem doesn’t cause any less damage. Failing to repair a dripping faucet means that your water bill may rise anywhere from $20-200 per year and you may end up with a mold or mildew problem from the constant moisture.

In addition to this, you’ll likely have to prematurely replace your faucet. The best option to solve this problem is actually calling us to repair it! Typically repairing a dripping faucet is far less expensive than the other options!

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