Air Mechanical, Inc. Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Plumbing Repair’

3 Tips for Reducing Bathroom Plumbing Issues

Monday, July 6th, 2015

Bathroom plumbing issues are the last thing you want to have to deal with in your home. If sewage backs up through your drains or if there is a sudden leak from your shower, you may have to drop everything just to schedule repairs. Take these preventive steps if you want to lower the chances that something will go wrong with your bathroom plumbing, so your bathroom will remain a place where you can relax and prepare for the day.

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Common Bathroom Plumbing Repair Issues

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

No spot in your house uses more water on a daily basis than the bathroom(s). The stress put on the drains and waste water and freshwater lines in a bathroom are immense, and even the best cared-for bathroom will eventually run into plumbing issues. When this time arrives for a bathroom in your home, make sure that you call for professional plumbing repair in Ham Lake, MN. Unless the issue is a clog that is simple enough to eliminate using a plunger, you must leave bathroom plumbing to trained professionals, or else you risk massive leaks, damage to construction material, and even flooding.

Here are some of the more common issues with bathroom plumbing that can lead to repairs. Since 1985, Air Mechanical, Inc. has helped homeowners in the 7-county Metro Area with home comfort. We are ready 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, to help with any plumbing emergency your house may encounter.

The common bathroom plumbing problems

  • Sink and shower drain clogs – The drains in bathrooms typically encounter two problems that will lead to clogs: hair and soap scum. Although you should keep a drain cover over both drains to help prevent excess hair and soap from entering them, you can’t stop all of it. Hair will form into thick clumps down inside the p-trap (the curved pipe section below the drain) and soap scum will develop on the pipe lining and gradually build-up. Soap scum can also create an acid that can eat through the pipes. Plumbers can use professional drain cleaning methods to clear out these blockages.
  • Leaking toilet – A toilet can start to leak water for a variety of reasons. The most frequent causes are loose gaskets between the tank and bowl, a decaying wax ring in the base where the toilet connects to the floor, and cracks along the bowl. It usually takes a plumber to detect what the exact reason for the leaking is. Whatever the cause, it must receive attention immediately. Not only can a leaking toilet lead to flooding into the bathroom and unsanitary conditions, but water damage to the floor material can weaken it to a dangerous point where the weight of the toilet can cause it to break through the floor. (Yes, this happens… far more than you might think.)
  • Weak water pressure – Build-up of scale inside the pipes of your bathroom can lead to a drop in water pressure, and even eventually a loss of water flow entirely. You will need plumbers to descale the plumbing. In many cases, a plumber will recommend that you install a water softener for your home that will remove the minerals that are causing the development of scale.

Air Mechanical, Inc. has highly trained professionals for your needs for plumbing repair in Ham Lake, MN. Call us any time of the day or night to restore your bathroom’s plumbing.

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Copper Pipe Is So Expensive: Are There Alternatives for My Plumbing Repair Needs?

Friday, August 30th, 2013

You rely on your plumbing system for more daily tasks than you may realize. Everything from doing laundry, washing dishes, taking showers and generating hot water requires a successful operation from your indoor plumbing system. Needless to say, the plumbing in your home is just as susceptible to wear and tear, old age issues and damages as anything else. Plumbing repair in Blaine is an inevitability. While many people swear by copper plumbing for most applications, the fact of the matter is that it is extremely expensive to purchase compared to other options. If you find copper piping cost prohibitive, there are a few other options well worth your consideration.

Here are some plumbing repair tips from the professional plumbers at Air Mechanical, Inc.

One option to consider is PEX plumbing materials. PEX is much cheaper than copper, and it is also very easy to install. It does not require any glue, and it is not very likely to burst should it freeze, a real concern in Minnesota. It is flexible, which allows it to be snaked through your home for installation convenience, and requires less access than copper does. This makes it a great option for repair jobs in existing houses. It also does not corrode the way that copper can if you have acidic water in your home. No special tools are needed to join PEX piping together, as connections can be made with crimp rings and cinch clamps. Your professional plumber will have everything needed to ensure that your PEX plumbing is safely and effectively pieced together.

CPVC is another material to consider for plumbing repair in our home. This is a thermoplastic material which is great for supplying both hot and cold water. It is much more heat resistant than standard PVC piping, which is not used for hot water delivery. It is also nontoxic and offers impressive strength, minimizing the risk of burst pipes. It too is substantially cheaper than copper, and much lighter to handle. It will not galvanize the way that copper can, and can be pieced together using a special cementing material.

For more information about your copper piping alternatives, you must contact a professional plumber. Air Mechanical can answer any questions you may have. Schedule your plumbing repair in Blaine with us, and know that you are getting quality service.

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Ham Lake Plumbing FAQ: Do I Have a Frozen Water Line?

Monday, December 10th, 2012

If you think you may have a frozen water line leading to your Ham Lake area home, call the Ham Lake plumbers at Air Mechanical ASAP. A frozen water line can burst and cause a major leak and expense.

If you aren’t sure, here are some things that let you know that you could have a potential water line leak.

  • No Water to the Plumbing Fixtures:
    While any water lines inside your home should not freeze, this can happen with pipes in unfinished areas of the home, such as a basement. If the temperatures have dropped below freezing and you aren’t getting any water to your fixtures, you could have a frozen water line leading to that plumbing fixture or appliance.
  • Meter Is Not Running:
    If you aren’t sure whether the water lines inside or outside are frozen, turn off the main water source. Then check the meter to see if it is still running. If so, you have a frozen water line in the house. If not, you probably have a frozen main water line. Call your utility company if this is the case.
  • When to Call a Plumber:
    The best way to tell whether or not you have a frozen water line, is to call the Ham Lake plumbers at Air Mechanical if you suspect a frozen pipe. We will send someone to your home as soon as we can to take a look or walk you through what to do before we get there.

Call Air Mechanical for all your Ham Lake plumbing repair needs. Contact Air Mechanical today!

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Plumbing Repair Tip: How Much Water Does a Leaky Faucet Waste?

Monday, September 17th, 2012

A leaky faucet can be a real annoyance. The rate at which the drips come out can determine how much water you are actually losing on a given day, week, or even year. For a home that has one leaky faucet which drips only once a minute, that is the equivalent of 1,440 times a day. Although it may not seem like a significant number, over the course of a year that single drip will equal 34 gallons.

If you happen to have two leaky faucets in your Ham Lake home which each drip on average 10 times a minute, you will be losing over a gallon of water a day from each, or over 694 gallons a year. Many faulty faucets can drip much more often than that, even up to a drip a second. When this happens, one faucet alone can cost you five gallons a day or 2,082 gallons a year.

If you’re interested in just how much water your home is losing due to one or more leaky faucets, there is a great website that will calculate it for you. The U.S. Geologic Survey has a quick drip calculator anyone can use to figure it out. Go to http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/sc4.html and plug in the numbers for yourself. What may seem like a little, insignificant drip can wind up being a lot of wasted water and money, literally going right down the drain.

In addition to losing water and increasing your water bill, this wasted water can have a negative impact on the environment, especially for people living in areas with drier climates or places that haven’t gotten as much rainfall as normal. When water isn’t conserved or is wasted, the supply can’t be replenished and the entire ecosystem will suffer as a result.

To save you both the annoyance and increased cost on your water and energy bills, call an Ham Lake plumber at Air Mechanical to come and fix the problem or install a new faucet. Leaky faucets are usually a quick fix that can end up saving you money the minute they quit dripping.

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Rogers Plumbing Q/A: Why Is There a Sewer Smell in Our House?

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Detecting a sewer smell in your Rogers house is never pleasant on a number of levels. Of course, the main thing you are most likely concerned about is that the smell makes it hard to be in your house. But there are other reasons to be concerned when you smell something like this as well. For one thing,  it likely means that there is a problem somewhere in your sewer, drainage or venting system.

In most cases, you will need to call in a Rogers  plumbing professional to determine the exact cause of the sewer smell and eliminate it. This can sometimes be expensive if the problem is widespread or difficult to locate, but it does not have to be. Some causes of a sewer smell in your house are relatively easy to remedy, particularly for an experienced professional.

For instance, the smell may be the result of leaks in certain pipes and can be eliminated when those leaks are repaired. Or a low water level in your toilet could be the culprit. The constant presence of water in your toilet bowl is actually what keeps those sewer gasses from seeping up and into your house. So if the water level in the toilet bowl drops for some reason, the gasses can be allowed to escape into your house. This is especially likely if you have a toilet that does not get used often and where the water may have evaporated over time.

Another common reason that a sewer smell can develop in your house is that the vent pipe has become clogged. Since it is the job of this pipe to vent sewer gasses out of your home, it is not surprising that a blockage in this system could cause the odors to build up inside. What ever the cause, the Rogers plumbing professionals at Air Mechanical Heating, Cooling & Plumbing are ready to help 24 hours a day!

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Plumbing Guide: How to Prevent Bathroom Water Damage

Friday, January 13th, 2012

Water damage. Even the mere mention of potential damage from excess water in your Fridley house is enough to send a chill down your spine. However, there are a number of things you can do to avoid such damage, especially in the bathroom.

The Bathtub

The biggest single contributors to water damage are the shower and bathtub, where gallons upon gallons of water are distributed every day. You can minimize damage by doing the following:

  • Tiles – Check for missing or cracked tiles and replace them immediately. Supplement the tiles with grout that is properly sealed and check for any potential leaks.
  • Keep it Dry – There is a lot of water in your bathroom. Keep it off the floor by drying it up after a shower, hair washing or any other moisture producing activity in the bathroom. Make sure you minimize the risk of excess water by placing bathmats on the floor outside your shower.
  • Exhaust Fan – Water builds up in a bathroom because there is no moving air. Humidity can be just as damaging as actual wetness, especially if it settles in cooler temperatures. To avoid this happening, install an exhaust fan attached to the light switch to draw out any moisture after a shower.

Sinks and Fixtures

  • Check Under the Sink – Look under the sink and make sure there are no drips from the faucet and no leaks from the trap. You may simply need to check and clean the trap once every month or so.
  • Seals – Check sink seals on a regular basis for cracks or leaks and replace them when necessary.
  • Speed of Drainage – If the sink drains slowly, the drain may be clogged. Check the trap and if that doesn’t help, pour a mixture of vinegar and baking soda down weekly.
  • Upgrades – Upgrade your fixtures to save water. Toilets eat water to the tune of 40% of your annual consumption and your shower head can be made almost twice as efficient without cutting into your comfort level. If you notice a drip, crack or leak from any of these devices, simply upgrade them and you’ll save a lot of water (and reduce how much of it could leak if a problem occurs in the future).

There are a lot of ways to avoid water leaks in your bathroom. Keep a close eye on things and it will be much easier than if you waited for a full blown problem to develop.

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Detecting Leaks with Your Water Meter: A Tip from Vadnais Heights

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

When you notice a leak, you fix it right away, but what happens when you don’t notice a leak for days or even weeks? The damage it causes can have a profound impact on your water bill and the good repair of your Vadnais Heights home. To avoid hidden leaks – the ones that hide in your walls or your yard, keep a close eye on your water meter.

The Hidden Leaks

Obvious leaks are…well, they’re obvious. They pour water down the walls, leave puddles in your bathroom or create ponds in your backyard. Unfortunately, the majority of leaks are much less obvious. They result from small drips between pipe joints in your walls or a hairline fracture in your water main or drain pipes. They may not even appear where you can see them.

If this happens, it’s important to have a keen eye for the signs that a water leak has occurred. Specifically, look for jumps in your water meter readings.

Watching the Water Meter

Your water meter tracks every drop of water consumed by your family. To check for water loss, record the reading at the same time every day and watch how it changes. To be sure of a leak, you can turn off all the fixtures in your home and watch for the meter to move. If the meter moves despite the fact that no one in your home is consuming any water, it is likely a leak.

You can also compare your bills from one month to the next. If your bill rises suddenly, without any clear reason, check the meter readings and the rates. If the meter reading increased suddenly and the water rate did not, there might be a leak to blame. If that’s the case, call a Vadnais Heights professional to inspect your water lines immediately – what is hidden to you might be a relatively obvious, straightforward repair to someone else.

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Clogged Kitchen Sink in Blaine? What Should You Do

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Clogs are common in almost every household and place of business, in all places from Richfield to Blaine. Even if you take special care not to put anything that might cause a clog down the drain, there is a good chance that excess bits of food, grease, hair, or other unsavoury materials and pieces will eventually line and clog your pipes. So, what should you do when a clog takes over your kitchen sink? Here are a few simple steps for this plumbing repair.

  1. Disconnect Your Garbage Disposal – Before you do anything, you will need to disconnect the disposal from the sink so you have access to the drain. Start by unplugging your disposal – never work on your sink or the garbage disposal with it plugged in. If the disposal itself is clogged, turn the blades manually to work free any clogs. If it turns freely, the clog might be past the disposal in the pipes and it will need to be removed for further cleaning. Most of the time, however, the clog will be either in the disposal or in the opposite sink.
  2. Plunging Your Sink – Once you have ruled out the disposal, it is time to plunge the sink. Make sure to clamp off the line from your dishwasher so that you do not push any water back into the machine. If you have two sink drains, make sure to seal up the one you are not plunging so that a good seal is created. Do NOT plunge the sink if you have poured any chemicals down in an attempt to clear the drains.
  3. Cleaning Out the Trap – If a plunger cannot get the job done, it is time to check the P-trap. To do this, remove as much water as possible from the sink and place a bucket under the trap so you do not make too big of a mess. Now, disconnect the p-trap from the trap arm. If you have an older metal sink assembly, you may need a wrench or pliers to get the Slip Nuts free. Plastic is much easier. Check the trap to see if there is a clog in the curve of the joint. If not, you will need to move on to the final possible fix.
  4. Snaking – If you cannot clear the clog with a plunger and your hands, it may be time for a snake. You can rent one from most hardware stores if you do not own one, and it is a lot cheaper than calling a plumbing professional to do it for you. You will need to remove the trap arm from the drain itself and then run the snake down the line until you find the clog. This can be a time consuming process, but most often it will take care of any remaining clogs.

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