Stop DIY Plumbing Repairs

The Dangers of DIY Plumbing

In most instances, embarking on a DIY home project can save money and create fun memories for the family, but there are some instances where doing it yourself can cause more problems than it can solve. Generally, the problem is straightforward, but plumbing is not an easy fix. If corrected improperly, the problem can multiply and end up costing more than it would if homeowners had called the professionals first. 

Water and sewer lines are a delicate and intricate system that runs under the home’s foundations and throughout its interior, efficiently pulling and pushing the desired substances to their designed location without a second thought. Once one of these lines is damaged, the system can be a hard code to crack to the untrained eye. 

Inexperience Means Guesswork

To the untrained eye, a problem may seem simple but be something entirely more detailed. For the normal homeowner, a simple crack in the piping looks like a trip to the hardware store for some sealant, but the professional knows the real secrets. 

Plumbers are highly trained, certificated, and insured to spot, diagnose, and repair damages that homeowners may overlook or not even see. Homeowners can pick up on the signs that there could be an issue somewhere in the plumbing, but it takes a professional to find the problem accurately. Hiring experts can help homeowners take the guesswork out of the equation and avoid misdiagnosing their plumbing!

Repairs Take Extra Time

clock Once a problem is identified, the homeowner would have to research and then make a trip or two to the hardware store to gather the correct equipment for the job. Professionals would not need these trips and time spent researching the potential cause of a leak or crack if a homeowner executed a quick call to a plumbing company. A full weekend with the family and friends could be wasted by not calling the professionals and trying to solve the problems themselves. 

There is another factor that homeowners negate when trying to fix things by themselves. And that factor is the serious risk of damage that DIY plumbing can have on the plumbing system and health risks for the homeowner. Because the homeowner is not an expert and is most likely not certified in dealing with water and sewer lines, there is a higher chance that another problem could occur while trying to solve the first one. Or the increased chance for the homeowner to injure themselves while trying to save a few bucks. 

Mistakes Create Extra Costs

cost With the added risk of damaging the plumbing further and the increased risk of injury to the homeowner, the cost of trying to DIY plumbing repairs also increases exponentially. Even if everything goes right and the problem is solved, there are many more costs to fixing plumbing issues through DIY methods than calling an expert. 

A professional can pull onto a job site with a van or truck equipped with everything they need to handle plumbing problems. Homeowners would have to purchase or rent any tools and equipment they don’t already have. Plus, because professionals are insured, that saves homeowners a ton of money if something goes wrong. Homeowners may be liable to cover costs out of pocket if an emergency happens during DIY plumbing repairs.  

About Fitzgerald Plumbing

Fitzgerald Plumbing has over a decade of experience serving its neighbors in Lakewood, CA, and the surrounding areas. They provide same-day service, straightforward pricing, and estimates. Call them today for plumbing services in Lakewood, CA.

Beware of Common Spring Plumbing Problems

Spring Vegetation Can Interfere With Plumbing

An overflowing toilet is an urgent plumbing problem that can cause a lot of stress. It can often be the symptom of a much deeper problem. When sewer lines become blocked, the consequences can be truly horrifying. Toilets won’t flush. Bathtubs won’t drain. Sewage may back up into the yard or house.

These problems become all too common in the spring. Luckily there are easy ways to deal with blocked sewer lines. In this article, homeowners will discover why blocked sewer lines are common in the spring, what problems they cause and how professionals will deal with them.

Intruding Roots Wreak Havoc on Drain Lines

tree roots Spring sewer problems can result from plants and trees. Trees emerge from dormancy in the spring, and they send out new roots to find nutrients. These tiny roots are strong and can often find their way into sewer lines through cracks or where pipes meet.

Once tree roots can get inside sewer lines, they will rapidly grow. The contents of a sewer line are like food for the tree, so the tree aggressively sends out roots to lap them up. The result is further damage to the sewer line and a giant tangle of roots growing inside the sewer line. If left untreated, they can even damage a home’s foundation and structural integrity

Complications from Intruding Tree Roots

slow draining The homes’ drains are all connected and flow to the main sewer line. This means that problems in the main sewer line– the large, single line that runs through the yard to municipal sewer lines– will quickly be apparent around the whole house. Signs that tree roots have penetrated the sewer line are:

  • Chronically slow-flushing toilets
  • Bathtubs and sink that won’t drain
  • Sewage backups in basements
  • Sewage backing up into bathtubs
  • Burst pipes
  • Lush growth in landscaping
  • Insect infestation near the home

Fixing Problems Caused by Root Obstruction

Professionals have a variety of solutions to help fix clogged drain lines. Some options are:

  • Drain Augers: Plumber’s snakes offer temporary relief from backed-up sewer lines. However, a permanent solution will be necessary once the pipes are breached.
  • Root Barriers: Digging up the yard to replace sewer lines is invasive. Instead of trenching the entire yard and replacing a whole sewer line, try having root barriers installed around pipes close to tree roots. This is a cost-saving option that is quicker and less invasive than repiping.
  • Repiping: For many homes with chronic drain problems, the cause of drain problems is poor installation and proximity to new landscaping. Repiping is a great option because it can reroute pipes around existing landscaping and eliminate issues that are caused by poor installation.
  • Upgrading Piping: In many cases of root obstruction, the problem is due to old piping. Metal piping can rust through, and clay pipes eventually degrade. Upgrading piping to modern PVC sewer lines can seal out invading roots and ensure that none can invade in the future.

A professional sewer line service is the best resource to help find the right solution in every situation.

About Fitzgerald Plumbing

Fitzgerald Plumbing is a local business that has provided the residents of Lakewood, CA, and the surrounding areas with exceptional customer service from trusted professionals since 2008. They offer same-day service, straightforward pricing, and estimates. Call them today for sewer line repair in Lakewood, CA.

Enjoy a Healthy and Reliable Plumbing System When you Follow These Leak Preventing Tips

It goes without saying that you’d do everything in your power to protect your Lakewood, CA home investment. Don’t forget that protecting your home means protecting its components, like your plumbing systems.

The good news is that this is easily accomplished with a little preventative maintenance on a regular basis. Don’t be daunted by the prospect of maintaining your plumbing; the following tasks are easy and entirely manageable:

Corrosion Protection

Over time, your plumbing system will most likely corrode. This is caused by a combination of factors, like iron and other minerals in your water that eventually cause damage and breakage to the pipes, causing leaks.

There are certain steps that you can take to extend your plumbing’s life. First, if your pipes are made of copper, you may want to consider switching to PVC.

PVC is far more resistant to rust. Check your water’s PH balance. If it is out of balance, put in a water softener. Make a point of running your water often, as standing water will promote corrosion too.

Drain Cleaning

The right way to clean your drains? With a professional drain cleaning on a regular basis, which can help to reduce the likelihood of clogs ever even having the chance to form.

The wrong way? Dumping a bottle of commercial drain cleaner down the pipes. The same chemicals that work to remove the clog bind to the sides of the pipes and will eventually cause them to leak. It’s not worth the long-term damage for a quick fix.

How to Source Leaks

One of the most important tasks you can do is to find water leaks before they have a chance to develop into something more serious.

Taking care of a small leak is usually a small job with a nominal cost, whereas a bigger leak means more mess and more cost.

Do you know what some of the indications that you’ve got a leak are? Pooling water and moisture on pipes are two major signs. Also be watchful for dropping water pressure, rising water bills, sunken patches on your lawn and mold growth.

Water Pressure

If your water pressure is running too high, that could create damage to your pipes and cause leaks.

Check it regularly to make sure that it is in a good range. Ideally, try to set it between 40-45 psi.

Don’t wait until plumbing leaks damage your home. Follow these tips to avoid leaks in the first place.

Lower Your Water Bill and Conserve Water by Following Our Helpful Guide

Residents of Lakewood, CA have faced quite a few challenges when it comes to conserving water in the last few years thanks to rising temperatures and lowering water levels.

A consequence of water shortages is increased rates for water consumption. Now more than ever it is important to follow some basic guidelines or conserving, recycling and saving water, not only to save money on your water bill but also to help preserve the environment.

Check Your Plumbing for Leaks

If your water bill seems like it is escalating every month it might be due to the rising price of local utilities due to a lack of water in the area combined with minor leaking from your pipes.

The rarer a natural resource becomes, the more it tends to rise in price, so you can’t afford to have a single minuscule drop oozing out of your plumbing system.

However, this can be almost impossible to accomplish if you home has pipes that leak. A professional can inspect your plumbing to make sure it is working properly and make sure that you are not paying for water that is seeping into the ground.

Take a Short Shower Instead of Taking A Bath

If you are going to take a bath, fill the tub up with just a inches of water and to use a sponge to clean yourself.

Then scoop out any remaining water and use it to water your plants. If this seems like a lot of work to you, then try taking a short shower instead.

Limit to your showering time to less than five minutes to help save money, energy, and water. One way to make sure that family members do not spend too much time in the shower is to put an egg timer in the bathroom and advise them to turn the water off when shaving or shampooing their hair.

Wash Your Car at a Carwash Instead of In Your Driveway

Washing your car at a carwash not only saves you from using the hundreds of gallons of water that it can take to get your car clean, but it is also better for the environment.

Cars that are cleaned in a drive-thru car wash activate automated water mechanisms when they are needed as your car is put through the washing process.

When you wash your car in your driveway it is more difficult to tell how much water you are using because you are likely rinsing the soap off of the vehicle with a garden hose.

Recycle Your Greywater By Using It to Irrigate Your Garden

Dirty laundry water, dishwater, and bath water can be recycled manually by saving it in the bucket, or you can get a plumber to run rubber pipes outside so that the water is soaked up by your garden soil.

This water, left over from water, is called greywater and it can help your garden and lawn grow as long as it does not contain large amounts of chemicals, bleach or salt.

Remember that it sometimes takes a plumbing professional to detect leaks and that an expert might be more efficient when it comes to helping you install recycling hoses for greywater.A good plumber will also help you install a low-flow showerhead or automated water mechanisms. Water is destined to cost more than ever in the near future. Combat this inevitable economic reality is to start conserving and recycling your water now.

Prevent a NYE Clogged Drain Disaster With Regular Drain Cleaning

How do you plan to celebrate your New Year’s Eve in Lakewood, CA? Perhaps you are going to watch the ball drop? Maybe you’re planning a quiet night in with the kids?

Or is this the year that you are going all out and hosting a New Year’s Eve bash? No matter how you plan to celebrate, there is one thing that is certain: You don’t want your festivities to be overthrown by a drain clog or a drain overflowing.

You want to make sure that your celebrations go off without a hitch (and as a bonus, reap a number of other benefits for the year to come). Schedule a drain cleaning, which is a very smart step in proactive home maintenance.

Fresh Flow for the New Year

Do you relish that moment right after you’ve finished cleaning your home and everything is fresh and sparkling?

Spoiler alert: if you’ve got dirty drains, your home isn’t nearly as clean as you think it is.

There is usually standing water in back up drains, which causes mold to grow and makes other bacteria and germs proliferate.

Don’t forget the awful odor that escapes from your drains when they are dirty, which will make even the cleanest home smell bad. Avoid all of this by getting your drains cleaned.

Start Saving More Money

It is a common habit to deal with a clog by pouring drain cleaner down the drain. This may work at the time, but you are causing damage to your pipes.

The toxins in the cleaners will cause decay to the pipes, which means that you’ll need to replace or repair them, which is costly.

Furthermore, when pipes are damaged, they leak, which will make you waste water and pay more on your water bills.

No More Noise

Do you hear any squeaking or cracking coming from your pipes? That is probably because of buildup that is putting pressure on water as it rushes through.

If you are turning on the hot water, the sounds may be even more noticeable. Get the problem solved with a drain cleaning.

Clog Prevention

You want to be rid of clogs for good and the headaches that go along with dealing with them?

Have a drain cleaning done so that clogs don’t even have a chance to form. Even if you are careful, you’ll end up with grease, hair, and food in your drains as you use them.

When you consider all the benefits of drain cleaning, it’s hard to justify waiting any longer to start making this a regular habit.

Stay Warm and Save This Season With our Complete Winter Checklist for 2017

The official start of winter is approaching quickly. Now is the time to take care of any last-minute fall maintenance to help prepare your home for the coming season.

The tasks that you take on now will make your home cozy, safe and more cost-efficient to run during the winter in Lakewood, CA. To help you along, we’ve put together a complete checklist for you to follow. Here is how to get started.

Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Alarm Testing

With the increased use of your furnace and your fireplace in the winter, it is important to have working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms on standby.

Press the test buttons and make sure that the units are working; remove unit lids and vacuum out the insides. Spider webs and dust get inside which can interfere with the sensors. Don’t forget to put in new batteries.

A few extra tips: never paint on your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors, because they won’t work as well. Also store a fire extinguisher on each level of your home, just in case.

Why you Need Insulation

You spend a lot of money trying to keep your home in good repair and looking its best, but in reality, it may be what’s behind the walls that counts.

If you don’t have enough insulation, you are wasting money by letting hot air escape through the walls. Do you have enough insulation?

Some signs that you don’t include drafts, mice and bug problems, attic leaks, fluctuating temperatures and high heating bills. It’s a worthwhile investment to upgrade your insulation because you could reduce your heating bills by 20-30 percent, or even more, depending on the circumstances.

Ventilation is Important

In order for your home to heat well, it not only needs a good layer of insulation, but it also needs proper ventilation. Ventilation will ensure that extra moisture is removed from the air so that that heat will be evenly distributed.

Exhaust fans work well in the kitchen and bathrooms. A heat exchange pump will direct air too. If you’d like to try something a little simpler, you can even open the windows a tiny bit for a couple of minutes a day.

Can A Trusted Plumbing Superhero Save You From Unclean Water?

Can A Trusted Plumbing Superhero Save You From Unclean Water?

You do all you can to prevent your family from getting sick. You wash your hands. You eat right. You exercise. Despite taking all of these proactive steps, you may be overlooking a risk to your health that is present right there in your home- unclean water even in Lakewood, CA.

And what’s even more concerning is that it could be your plumbing that is causing the contamination. That’s why you need assistance from a superhero plumber to save today and protect your family from waterborne illnesses.

Water Conservation Actions

Your plumber is also a water conservation superhero because his work helps to reduce water waste, which is necessary given the global water crisis.

Fixing plumbing leaks not only saves you money and saves your home from damage; it saves the planet too. Some common causes of leaks are disjointed pipes, corrosion, and broken seals.

You can help your plumber stay on top of your plumbing leaks by proactively trying to source them out. Common signs of leaks include pooling water, moisture on pipes, mold growth, a musty odor and a hike in your water bills that you can’t explain.

What You Should Know About Your Plumbing

One of the most common ways that your plumbing can contaminate your water is if toxins leach from your pipes into the water. If your home is older, your pipes likely contain lead, which threatens to contaminate your water. To remedy this problem, have your plumber replace lead pipes with PVC or copper.

Copper is actually fairly resistant to germs, which can inhibit germs from spreading into your water. PVC is more resistant to corrosion and corroded pipes can contaminate your water. Both are good choices. You should also ask your superhero plumber to inspect your plumbing.

If the pressure is off balance, then pipes can be damaged. What can also happen is backflow, where water flows in the opposite direction from what it should. Wastewater doesn’t leave your home in the way that it should, and your tap water is contaminated.

Health Risks From Unclean Water

You can get very sick or even develop dangerous long-term health problems like cancer, kidney and liver failure, respiratory problems or neurological conditions from unclean water. Birth defects are linked to contaminated water too.

In the shorter term, about 24 to 48 hours after consuming unclean water, you may experience flu-like symptoms that can be moderate to severe. If you suspect that you’ve consumed unclean water, contact your doctor for the appropriate treatment.

History of Indoor Plumbing Info

When you turn the tap on a faucet or flush a toilet, you don’t usually think to yourself how lucky a person you are to be able to perform these actions.

But in truth, you’re very lucky. You’re benefiting from thousands of years of engineering that makes it possible for you to take for granted something that your ancestors of the past could only dream of. Indoor plumbing is a very recent technology. For everyone else? It wasn’t that easy.

You’re benefiting from thousands of years of engineering that makes it possible for you to take for granted something that your ancestors of the past could only dream of. Indoor plumbing is a very recent technology. For everyone else? It wasn’t that easy.

The Egyptian & Roman Pioneers

Plumbing wasn’t just a matter of convenience, but survival for some cultures, such as the ancient Egyptians. Living in a desert region, they were forced to create the first pipes, made of clay, to carry water from the Nile to where it could be used on their crops.

Eventually, they switched over to copper, a material still used for pipes even today! The Romans also considerably helped to advance plumbing and engineering. Of course, they’re most well-known for the aqueducts that carried huge amounts of water from remote sources to their towns and cities.

But their aqueducts could also branch off, delivering water straight to homes. They even pioneered sewer pipes with hollowed out elm logs to try and control waste disposal!

The Age Of Reason & Smelliness

Perhaps the biggest surprise for many people is that as history marched on, and we hit the 18th century and the so-called “age of reason,” plumbing took a step backward. You don’t have to look any further than one of the most glamorous figures of French history, the famous Marie Antoinette. Despite being royalty, she smelled horrible and so did her palace.

There are a few reasons for this. First, Marie and other nobility only took a bath about once a month, so she mostly tried to hide her stink with perfume. Second, and perhaps more dangerous, the inland locations of many places made it impossible to use aqueduct techniques like the Romans and Egyptians did, so no indoor plumbing or sewer control systems existed.

This meant that royal palaces often had human waste of both kinds lining the halls, sitting on rugs, and even piling up in royal chambers and other spaces in a palace. Far from being glamorous spaces, royal palaces were often literal cesspools where you could get very sick if you could train yourself to get used to the sight and smell of human waste everywhere.

Plumbing Today

Modern plumbing is, fortunately, nothing like this. Modern faucets and showers don’t just allow us easy access to water; new techniques even make these appliances and fixtures more water efficient.

New dishwashers, for example, may save more water than traditional, manual dish washing. And of course, modern toilets provide an immense amount of healthy, sanitary safety, conveniently moving waste away and letting it get properly treated.

Now, with modern plumbing, water and sewage systems are both safe and easy. And as long as you have companies like Fitzgerald Plumbing working in the Lakewood, CA area to serve you, you always know that no matter what happens, there are experienced professionals to help.

We know just how important it is for you to fix plumbing problems quickly and efficiently so you can continue to enjoy the amenities of modern 21st-century life in America.

Your Guide for Having Summertime Fun While Being Water Conscious

The summertime is the perfect opportunity for you to get outside and enjoy some time splashing around in the water with loved ones. But with water resources dwindling across the country, many are now looking for environmentally friendly water play activities to take on this summer.

Our team has many years’ experience in this area, and we’re now highlighting several ways in which you can conserve water while still enjoying your summer fun outdoors.

Play a Game of Jump the Water Hose

With one person at one end of the yard and everyone else at the other, you can enjoy a fun game of jump the water hose.

Start by holding the hose at around hip height, and allow the water jet to stream out. Then ask for the other participants to try and jump over the jet stream in mid-air. You can raise the stream as the game goes on to make it more challenging.

The great thing about this game is that if you’re a little off, you won’t have to worry about anyone tripping on the rope.

Choose Sponges instead of Water Balloons

You don’t have to stop the water play fights just because water balloons are such a large waste of water. Why not enjoy time play fighting by throwing sponges at your opponents this summer season?

The great benefit of using sponges is that they can be reused and don’t have to be filled every time you throw like a water balloon. Using sponges for play water fights can help you save water resources while ensuring hours of fun for all.

Enjoy a Game of Sponge Basketball

With a bucket at either end of your yard and two teams of participants, you’re now able to set the stage for a fun game of sponge basketball. Give both teams a few sponges each as they can then pass the sponge between them.

Then, when they’re ready, they can throw sponges into the other team’s bucket for a point. The defending team can try to block their bucket to prevent the attacking team scoring. This game helps children understand the importance of teamwork and can be great fun for large groups of kids! By working with our experts, you can find the ideal environmentally friendly water activities for your family this summer season.

Reliable Water Leak Detection Information

Water leaks can cause a significant amount of damage to your home if left unchecked. That’s why leak detection abilities are so important for homeowners.

As an extra precaution, if you are traveling this summer, turn your water off before you go. If you do have a water leak and it gets worse while you are gone, the damage can be substantial.

Here is some advice on what you can do to detect leaks in your home.

Mold and Structural Damage

Think that a small leak is no big deal? Think again.

When water comes in contact with drywall or flooring, the perfect conditions for mold growth are created.

Mold only takes between 24-48 hours to grow after the initial contact from the water.

Once mold starts to grow, it is hard to stop.

Mold spores pose a clear and present danger to your family’s health.

Don’t take the risk.

Your home’s structure is at risk as well. Beams, framing, and walls can all shift and break down, making your home potentially unsafe.

How to Track Down the Leaks

For more complex leak detection, you need to consult with trained professionals who can use special equipment that lets them listen and look at your pipes.

Generally speaking though, you can source out leaks by using the process of elimination.

Look underneath sinks. Are the joints or pipes moist? Is there moisture or mold inside the cabinetry?

In your basement, do you see rust or leaking water around your water heater? Do you see pooling water near your foundation or on the floor?

Are there wet spots on the ceilings beneath bathrooms (particularly where toilets and tubs are located)? Are connector hoses from washing machines and dishwashers in good repair or are they damaged?

Taking Steps to Prevent Leaks

Essentially, anything that puts stress on your pipes can cause them to crack or break over time. That is why you should take steps to avoid clogs by never putting anything that isn’t liquid down your pipes.

It is a wise move to get pipes cleaned and inspected for damage regularly too. Another major stress on your pipes is high water pressure. Take care to turn it down.