Archive for July, 2009

Plumbing DIY – How to Solder Copper Pipes and Copper Joints!

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Soldering copper pipes and joints may be one of the first things a plumber should know how to do.  There’s already many great resources on how to solder copper pipes and joints, we highly recommend to start out with this article from RD.com.

In this article, we’ll show you how to do a leakproof soldering job the first time—and a few cool tools to make the job quicker and easier.

solder-howto

Here’s two videos on how to solder copper pipes and joints FYI:

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Plumbing DIY – How to Install a Toilet!

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

If you are thinking about installing a toilet yourself, you might be interested to read the article on DoItYourself.com.  Of course, you can always call us at 888-LOW-BIDZ and get it done by professional plumbers too.

One word of warning, do not attempt to replace your own toilet without taking all the pre-cautions:

  1. Violating or ignoring local code restrictions.
  2. Using pipes that are too small.
  3. Attaching copper to galvanized without using a brass or dielectric fitting between the two.
  4. Not using PTFE tape or pipe compound at threaded joints.
  5. Not leveling your fixtures when installing them.
  6. Not installing an air gap filling for fixtures.
  7. Cutting supply stub outs too short to install the shutoff valves onto after the finished wall is in place, or
  8. Not properly aligning tubing into fittings or stop valves. (Forcing the nut onto the compression ring at an angle when the tubing is at an angle will cause a leak.)
  9. When turning the water back on in your home, always run the outside hose valve or flush your toilets to bleed dirt and air from the lines. This debris can cause problems in your sink faucets and other plumbing trim.

toilet

Here’s also a great video on how to install your own toilet:

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

How do Tankless Water Heater Work?

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Have you considered getting a “tankless” water heater for your home?

According to TanklessWaterHeaterGuide.com, tankless water heater can be perfect for homes that do not need a massive supply of water:

Tankless Water Heaters heat water directly without the use of a storage tank. Therefore, they avoid the standby heat losses associated with storage water heaters. When a hot water tap is turned on, cold water travels through a pipe into the unit. In an electric Tankless Water Heater an electric element heats the water. In a gas-fired Tankless Water Heater a gas burner heats the water. As a result, Tankless Water Heaters deliver a constant supply of hot water. You don’t need to wait for a storage tank to fill up with enough hot water. Typically, Tankless Water Heaters provide hot water at a rate of 2 – 5 gallons (7.6 – 15.2 liters) per minute. Typically, gas-fired Tankless Water Heaters will produce higher flow rates than electric Tankless Water Heaters. Some smaller Tankless Water Heaters, however, cannot supply enough hot water for simultaneous, multiple uses in large households. For example, taking a shower and running the dishwasher at the same time can stretch a Tankless Water Heater to its limit. To overcome this problem, you can install a “whole house” type Tankless Water Heater or install two or more Tankless Water Heaters, connected in parallel for simultaneous demands of hot water. You can also install separate Tankless Water Heaters for appliances—such as a clothes washer or dishwater—that use a lot of hot water in your home.

If you own a vacation home or a condo, tankless water heaters may save space while providing a better energy-efficiency.

For SF Bay Area residents, we highly recommend to give us a call at 1-888-LOW-BIDZ for a free quote on a tankless water installation.  Mention this blog post and we will give you $100 off!

tankless-water-heater

(Image Credit)

Plumbing DIY – How to Find a Good Plumber!

Monday, July 6th, 2009

One of the hardest things in life is finding a good, honest plumber who will fix your plumbing problems and make sure the problem doesn’t happen.

Here’s a couple of suggestions on how to find a good plumber:

  • For small jobs, most plumbing companies can give you a quote over the phone such as clogged toilet or kitchen sink.  Do call 3-4 plumbing companies and see which one has the lowest price and ask them if they can guarantee the rates or if they will give you a discount.
  • For larger jobs such as plumbing that requires drilling or digging, you will want to find the right plumber first.  Do you research and call the speciality plumbers.  For example, you’d want to contact us for trenchless sewer jobs since we “specialize” in trenchless sewer jobs.  (although we do most regular household plumbing too)  Again, get several different quotes and meet the plumbers in person.   When you meet them in person, note how promptly they show up to your appointment time.  If the plumber is seriously late, you might want to consider another plumbing company even he’s the cheapest, he might take forever to get the job done.
  • Also ask if the plumber provides free camera inspection services.  (we do free camera inspection)  A lot of plumbers might try to rip you off by charging you $50 CASH for a camera inspection.  These guys are scammers as they take cash and not tell their company about it.  (sorta middlemanning their own plumbing company)  I’ve seen this happen recently, I couldn’t believe this plumber charged $200 CASH for a camera inspection.  Most good plumbing companies will do this free of charge.

You really want to find a plumber who gives you honest quotes on the jobs you need done.  Sometimes, a lot of the national brand companies will rip you off so go with a local plumber.

Of course, if you are in the SF Bay Area and you have a plumbing problem, you know who to call, Sewer Specialists @ 415-378-4618 or fill out our homepage online estimate form.


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