Santa Rosa Plumbing Service
Yesterday I had the unfortunate opportunity to tell one of our customers that they will need a complete overhaul of their plumbing in the Santa Rosa home. I crawled under their home and saw several locations with slow drips, a lot of rust, and some lousy patch jobs that were done by a previous plumber. Granted the home was built in the 1960’s so new pipes would be a necessity at some point in the near future, nonetheless, there are things we can do as homeowners to improve the life of our plumbing. By the way, a complete overhaul of plumbing on a two story, 4 bedroom 3 full baths, was estimated at $26,000. That’s a big bill!
Our plumbing is working all day long. Whenever you wash a dish, brush your teeth, poop, shower, water your lawn, etc., your plumbing is in use. The more you use something, the more it wears down. Nothing lasts forever. That goes for your plumbing too. As pipes age, they can thin out, leak in different areas, and even at times explode and burst. The hardness of your water, whether there are a lot of deposits like calcium in your water, can also have a deleterious effect on your pipes by wearing them down from the inside out. But there is something you can do to improve the life of your plumbing.
So, what are some things you can do to improve the longevity of your pipes?
How Do You decide Between a Traditional Water Heater and a Tankless Water Heater, and Which one is Better?
Are you in need of a water heater repair Santa Rosa pro? Santa Rosa Plumbing Service receives a ton of calls from customers that have an outdated, traditional water heater that is not functioning properly, or at all. And even though you do not see your water heater as often as the dishwasher, washing machine, or garbage disposal, it is arguably one of the most important appliances in your home. I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t like to take a cold shower. When a water heater is not functioning, due to its manufactured simplicity, there are only so many things that can be wrong with it. For example, water may be leaking from the top or bottom, no hot water, limited amount of hot water, water is too hot, water takes a substantial amount of time to reheat, low pressure, it’s making weird noises, the water coming out is dirty or rust colored or has a foul smell. Any of these issues may have you thinking is it time to find a water heater repair Santa Rosa specialist, or purchase a new water heater? And if you are going to purchase a new water heater, do you buy a tankless or traditional water heater?
Typically, the cost to install a water heater is anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000. The cost of a tankless water heater can range anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 and the cost for a traditional water heater is anywhere from $300 to $1,200. So anyway you cut the cake, if you are buying a new water heater you are looking at a fairly substantial expense. It may make sense to call a Santa Rosa Water Heater Repair service to get an estimate on water heater repair of your current appliance.
Let’s say you decide you want something new and do not want to call a water heater repair Santa Rosa specialist. Now you are confronted with another choice; how do you decide between a traditional water heater and tankless water heater?
Let’s start with a little education on the difference between the two types. Your normal, run of the mill water heater stores and heats up anywhere between 30-50 gallons, and this water is used anytime you require the hot water in your house (laundry, showers, dishwasher). The tank will refill and once again will heat the water. The tankless water heater uses electricity or gas to heat the water instantaneously whenever you require it.
Now that we have the difference between the two out of the way, let’s do the good old Ben Franklin T Chart, pros and cons. Traditional water heaters are cheaper and easy and inexpensive to replace. If you need a water heater repair Santa Rosa pro as well, often times they are cheaper to fix. Some negatives about traditional water heaters are that they often times come with a higher utility bill; heating and reheating water comes at a cost. They are cumbersome and quite large, can run out of hot water and typically last anywhere between 10 and 15 years. Tankless water heaters, on the other hand, are less expensive in the long run in regards to energy usage, take up very little space, can last up to 20 years and longer, and hot water is instantaneous. The downside is they are quite expensive ad if you are changing from a traditional heater, often there is quite a bit of work involved in making your home tankless water heater ready.
You may be thinking, I am just going to call a water heater repair Santa Rosa pro to come fix my traditional water heater, right? It is definitely not an easy choice to make. You need to take in to consideration your budget, what you can afford, how much water you are using, and the space these heaters take up. And in case you were wondering, Energy.gov states that a tankless water heater can save you about $100 in energy cost per year, which over time can easily make up for the higher initial cost, if you are planning on being in your home for a considerable period of time.
Let’s talk water heater repair. The average cost if you were to contact Santa Rosa Plumbing Service would be between $244 and $576 to repair your water heater. The total cost of calling a water heater repair Santa Rosa pro is directly related to the age of the water heater, the type, the problem (is the gas supply part of the problem?), and if plumbing or electrical work is needed.
As a water heater repair Santa Rosa specialist we have a rule of thumb that we go by and suggest to our customers. If the water heater is 7 years or older, and depending on the water heater problem of course, we recommend that you replace your water heater with a new, traditional one. The cost to benefit ratio is in favor of purchasing new.
I hope you have found this information useful. Fixing and buying a new water heater is a substantial expense and not an easy decision. If you are a new homeowner, plan on living in your home for a considerable period of time (10 years or more), and can handle the tankless water heater cost, then we recommend going that route. If your traditional water heater is older than 7 years, we recommend purchasing a new one, and if less than 7 years, give a water heater repair Santa Rosa specialist a call. We here at Santa Rosa Plumbing Service would be more than happy to help. We are just a call away!
Also, for more information, visit our water heater repair page, which is one of the jobs we specialize in.
Over the last week, this Santa Rosa Plumber has received several calls related to slow draining water either from a sink, bath, or shower. The drains have not become completely clogged but there is an obvious obstruction prohibiting water from draining at a normal rate. Most of the time the obstruction is a buildup of materials like hair, soap, and grease. Over time these things build up layer upon layer until eventually there can be a complete obstruction at which point you have a pretty big plumbing problem and need to call a plumber in Santa Rosa. Well, I want to help you avoid the plumbing problem before it becomes a plumbing nightmare. So how do we unclog the shower drain? You may think this sounds crazy but use the plunger that is sitting right near your toilet. And this is how you use a plunger to unclog your shower drain: You want to make sure you have a tight seal so that plunger creates powerful suction. I suggest using Vaseline. Put a decent amount of Vaseline on your finger and place it on the entire circumference of the rim of the plunger. This will help form a tighter seal. You then want to fill the shower with enough water that the head of the plunger is submerged in the water, which will also help create downward pressure on the plunger and an improved seal. Now you are ready to plunge, and plunge like you have never plunged before. There is a good chance you will be able to slough off some of the caked up debris. Another useful tip is to run the shower with very hot water prior to plunging, which will help loosen the oil based materials that are building up in your pipes.
Clogged or slow draining sinks for the most part have the same buildup of debris as your shower or bath. The plunger can also be used in this situation but may not as effective due to the contour of your sink. Baking soda and vinegar have been effective in the past, or a plumber’s snake, which is always effective. With the plumber’s snake sometimes it does take a professional Santa Rosa plumber to effectively clear the drain. And then there are chemicals. I personally like to avoid chemicals but sometimes it might be the only option. When using chemical you want to make sure you are dressed in appropriate protective equipment, which includes gloves and goggles. Be sure to follow the directions because these chemicals can be quite destructive. One thing to be aware of as well with chemicals is that if you over use them they can potentially damage your drain pipes, which could turn into a busted pipe anywhere along its route. If it bursts under your house you have a real big plumbing emergency on your hands and will need to call a plumber in Santa Rosa right away.
I hope you, the reader, have found some of this information useful. As I mentioned before we have received quite a few calls recently about clogged drains, sinks, showers, and baths, and our hope is to reach you before you need to reach out to us. Of course, Santa Rosa Plumbing Service is just a phone call away. If you need a Santa Rosa plumber, give us a call at 707-289-6500. We look forward to hearing from you.
Santa Rosa Plumber
The life of a plumber…
Sadly, most of you will only have an opportunity to meet me when sh*t hits the fan, literally. A large percentage of the customers that I provide plumbing services for are in need of somewhat emergent repairs. For example, the toilet or sink is clogged and water is flooding the floor, or the water heater went out, and there is no hot water! You’d be amazed to see how people react to not having hot water for their morning shower. No matter how many times I express the need for bi-annual plumbing inspections, my words often fall on deaf ears. I think people in general, and our society, believe that plumbers are only needed when something goes wrong or you are looking to remodel a bathroom, install a sink, or install a new water heater. This could not be farther from the truth! I like to compare plumbing and the role of the plumber to let’s say going to see your doctor for your annual checkup. Much like your plumbing, we as human beings also have plumbing. When you go to your doctor they run several tests, perform a physical exam, and sometimes perform blood work to get a better idea of what is going on inside you. Much like a doctor visit, the plumber also performs tests like taking a tiny camera and looking in to your drains and sewers and examining for the potential for these drains to back up and get clogged. We also like to investigate and confirm that appliances and fixtures are up to code and performing appropriately. It is extremely important to look at the water heater to make sure there are no safety issues because yes, a water heater can explode if there is a gas leak or a problem with the pressure release valve. I know! Scary right!
So all this said, what can you the homeowner or business owner do? Well, it’s quite simple, call a plumber! Having a plumbing inspection is not too expensive especially when you compare it to having a plumbing emergency where water damage becomes a real issue and your safety could be jeopardized. Most plumbers recommend that you have your plumbing inspected at least every two years, and we here at Santa Rosa Plumbing Service agree with that recommendation.
Ultimately, we would like to see much less emergencies in our day to day work. Not only will it benefit you by hopefully avoiding such emergencies, and saving you money, time, and headaches, it will also benefit us, because we like to meet people when they are not dealing with an emergency plumbing situation; we find that people are much happier during an annual plumbing inspection rather than a plumbing nightmare.
If you would like your plumbing inspected by Santa Rosa Plumbing Service, give us a call at 707-289-6500. We service all of Sonoma County and most of Marin County. We use nothing but the best products purchased from http://www.pacesupply.com/. We also enjoy using https://www.15000inc.com/ when we need to get creative with our water saving and conservation techniques. We look forward to meeting you in a not-so-sh*tty situation.
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