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Plumbing Blog

Choosing the Right Kitchen Faucet

The faucet is a major focal point in the kitchen. Choosing the right faucet can be a tricky business. Most people select their faucet based on its appearance. Aesthetics are important, but functionality is vital. Here are a few things to consider when selecting a faucet for your kitchen: Holes – Sinks come with holes to accommodate your faucet. Consider the number of holes in the sink when choosing a faucet. If you opt for a single stem faucet but have a sink with multiple holes, you will have to get a faucet with a bridge to cover the unwanted openings. You should also check the placement of the holes in the sink to make sure that they will properly accommodate your faucet. Style – The style of the faucet should conform to the general look of your kitchen. You won’t want a modern faucet to go with your cast iron farmhouse sink; it will simply not match. Finish – Faucets typically come in three finishes: bronze, chrome, or nickel. In choosing the finish of your faucet, consider the finish of the cabinet hardware next to your sink. You should also make sure that it complements the lighting fixtures in your kitchen. You don’t have to find the perfect match, but your finishes should complement each other. For example, if you have chrome or nickel in your cabinet’s hardware, a bronze faucet will look out of place. Height and reach of the spout – The trend in faucets today is to have a high arc, which works well if you have enough space above your sink. If you have... read more

Get Your Bathroom in the Valentine’s Day Spirit

You can splurge on an expensive dinner out for Valentine’s Day, but it’s cheaper and often more enjoyable to avoid crowds and celebrate in the intimacy of your own home. You can add embellishments to your house to make it more romantic. The kitchen and dining room are great spaces to decorate for the holiday, but don’t forget the bathroom. To make your bathroom look and feel more romantic, start by cleaning it. Neither shower scum nor a ring around the toilet will create an inviting atmosphere. Ten minutes before your significant other is due to arrive at home, fill the tub with hot water and bubble bath. Place candles around the bathtub. Be generous; the more the better. Drop rose petals in a trail leading to the bathtub and scatter them around the perimeter of the tub. Play romantic music softly in the background. Set two goblets on the bathroom counter or ledge of the tub. Fill them with champagne or a non-alcoholic alternative if you don’t drink. Replace your everyday bath towels with red towels. You can also cut out hearts and cover the walls and mirror with them. Don’t worry if they’re perfectly cut or placed. Just the idea that you’ve tried to make things special will impress your loved one. Have a candlelight dinner ready to go in the kitchen or bedroom. With a little creativity and effort, you can transform your home into the perfect setting for an unforgettable Valentine’s Day... read more

The Most Common Types of Plumbing Pipes

When you perform plumbing work in your own home, you might need to swap out types of piping. But first, it’s important to know the different options that are available and the care that they require. Cast Iron Cast iron pipes were commonly used before the 1960s, usually for vertical drain, horizontal drain, and vent stacks. Cast iron pipes may rust and look aged in appearance, but they are tough and reliable. Galvanized Steel Galvanized steel piping can be found in older homes. It is strong but only has a lifespan of 50 years. Both ends are threaded, and each pipe is screwed into another using a connecting joint. Galvanized steel pipes are no longer used in new construction. PEX Cross-linked polyethylene, commonly called PEX, is a flexible, color-coded plastic pipe that is easy to cut and join. It is the most common choice for homes in many parts of the country. It uses compression fittings as its joints. You will need a crimping tool to make lasting connections. PEX is a lot more expensive than plastic or copper pipes. Polyvinyl chloride PVC pipes were welcome news to the plumbing industry when they were introduced. They are lighter and easier to work with than the old galvanized steel pipes. PVC installation is easy, requiring only a miter box, hacksaw, and solvents to glue the pipes together. The diameters of the PVC pipes are marked on their surfaces. They are mainly used for waste and drainpipes or stacks, but not as supply pipes. Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene ABS pipes look similar to PVC except for their color. ABS pipes are black.... read more

Do You Need a Water Softener System?

If you have hard water, you have a lot of minerals in your water supply. Minerals are good, right? Well, not necessarily. They can cause a host of problems, including dry hair and skin, clogged pipes, difficulty dissolving soap, and buildup in appliances. A water softener removes the hard minerals from your water. They have a separate tank that uses common salt to create a brine solution. The hard water moves into the tank, and an ion exchange process ensues. The system removes calcium, iron, magnesium, and manganese and replaces these minerals with sodium ions. Here are just a few of the benefits of installing a water softener in your home: Softer body, softer clothes – If you have dry hair and skin, hard water may be at the root of the problem. Soft water is much gentler on your body and doesn’t dry it out as much. The same goes for clothes. Hard water can cause your clothing to come out of the laundry looking wrinkled and feeling rough. Soft water will make for softer clothing, bedding, and more. Clean dishes at last – Ever pull your glasses or silverware out of the dishwasher only to discover that they are looking dull and dirty? This is because of the accumulation of mineral on your dishes. Dishes washed in soft water will look sparkly and clean because they will be free from mineral deposits. In addition, your detergent will lather better with soft water. Happier appliances – Appliances that use water will have a shorter lifespan if your water is hard. Soft water will not cause the same buildup... read more

How to Prevent Plumbing Joint Leaks

The number one cause of frustration when installing or repairing water pipes is a leak in the plumbing joints. It takes time to put pipes, elbows, and couplings together, and few things are as maddening as getting everything assembled only to discover that there is a leak. You will then have no recourse but to go back and retighten the fittings to find out where the problem is. There is no guarantee that this will remedy things, however. You may turn on the water once again only to discover that the leak has not stopped. If this keeps happening, it may not be your fault. Perhaps the fittings are low quality or defective. If this is the case, you will need to toss the fittings and get new ones. Here are a few other causes of leaky plumbing joints: Threaded fittings – Fittings on metal or plastic pipes could be damaged by a misthreading of the male fitting. When unnecessary force is applied while tightening a fitting with a misthread, either the male or the female fitting could be damaged beyond use. Pipes must be threaded carefully and lightly before force is applied to tighten the fitting. It is also important to use Teflon tape or pipe compound to ensure that there is a watertight seal. Fittings that use washers may seem properly tight, but the washer may allow water to leak out. Soldered joints – Soldered copper joints can leak for a number of reasons. To ensure that the joints are watertight, ensure that pipes and fittings are thoroughly cleaned before soldering. A dirty surface will prevent proper... read more

Choosing Between ABS and PVC Pipes

There are two types of pipes that plumbers use when installing drainpipes – ABS or PVC. ABS stands for acrylonitrile butadiene styrene; PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. The choice between ABS and PVC usually boils down to what is required by the local code. In some jurisdictions, the building code allows only one type of pipe to be used for drainpipes. Homeowners have no recourse but to comply with the code if they do not want to run afoul of the city government. The differences between the two types of pipes are only minor. One difference is that ABS pipes are made with BPA or bisphenol A, an industrial chemical used in the manufacture of plastic and resin. PVC pipes do not contain BPA. BPA has been shown to have a negative effect on human health. For the uninitiated, the simple way of differentiating between ABS and PVC is to note the color. ABS is black while PVC is white. Don’t be too concerned about the aesthetics of the color. Once the pipes are installed, no one will see them. ABS is stronger and more shock-resistant, but PVC is more flexible. For use in cold environments, ABS has the advantage over PVC, although ABS is prone to warping when exposed to direct sunlight. PVC, on the other hand, does a better job of muffling the sound of running water. ABS pipes are connected by an instant bonding process that uses special cement. PVC pipes can be connected in two steps. First, the pipes must be treated with a purple primer. This step is messy and time-consuming. After the primer... read more

How Well do You Know Your Pipes?

Different types of pipes are used in the home plumbing system. If you know more about them, you will have an easier time making repairs in your home. Each type of pipe requires a unique repair technique. Using the wrong techniques could exacerbate problems and require the intervention of a professional plumber. Plastic pipes are either acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC). From the mid-1970s, most homes used plastic pipes and fittings because of their lower cost and ease of use. The joints of the plastic pipes are simply glued together by primer or liquid cement. ABS is no longer used in many areas because the joints tend to come loose. PVC is the most widely used pipe in drain lines today. It is both safe and durable. Cast iron pipes were commonly used before the 1960s for vent stacks, vertical drains, and horizontal drain lines. While cast iron is known for its durability, it tends rust over time. It is quite difficult to repair a rusted section of the cast iron pipe. You may need to call in a professional plumber to replace the rusted part with PVC using the right transition fittings. Cross-linked polyethylene (PEX) is now popularly used in homes. It is easy to cut and install. The pipe is very flexible and can be joined using compression fittings. The downside of PEX is the cost, which could be several times more expensive than copper. Galvanized steel pipes are commonly found in older homes. They are strong, but they only have a 50-year lifetime. Copper pipes are the best at resisting corrosion. They are commonly used... read more

New Year, New Plumbing

The New Year means a new start. It’s the perfect time to think through shortcomings and missteps of the previous year and resolve to improve in the upcoming one. If you have neglected your home’s plumbing system in the past, now’s the time to make amends. Upgrading your plumbing system can save you money and allow you to avoid plumbing fiascos down the line. Every plumbing system works under the same principle – water in, water out. Whatever water comes into your home must go out through the proper channels. When water exits your home in the wrong way, you will have a serious problem on your hands. Your home’s plumbing system has three components: the water supply system, the drainage system, and the fixture sets for your appliances. Installing a home plumbing system is not generally a DIY job. Most communities require that licensed plumbers do the installing. In addition, there are local codes that need to be followed when installing a plumbing system. If your old plumbing system is not working well, you could be flushing money down the toilet. You probably don’t need to get rid of the whole system. Rather, there are some simple plumbing upgrades that you can make that will allow you to save money on your water bill and unnecessary repairs. A new water heater can help you trim back your utility bills. Old water heaters let hot water sit unused in the pipes. Thus, you will need to run your water until it gets hot, resulting in wasted water. Try installing a hot water system with an on-demand circulation pump. With... read more

Advances in Plumbing

As 2017 comes to a close, all of us at Utah Rooter want to take this opportunity to thank our customers for the trust and loyalty they have shown us in the past year. We have enjoyed serving the fine people of Utah as we have helped fix and prevent plumbing problems. We look forward to continuing to serve as one of the top-rated Utah plumbing companies in 2018. As with many industries, plumbing continues to improve with time. The systems that we enjoy would have been simply unimaginable decades ago. Here are a few of the most recent advances in the plumbing world: Touchless fixtures – These are common features in commercial applications, but they have found their way into average homes now. This handy technology uses a motion sensor to turn on the water without the need to touch the faucet. This type of fixture requires less maintenance than the traditional varieties. Tankless water heaters – This technology has been around for many years, but it has only recently reached homes. The new water heaters have pipes that are warmed with gas or electric burners to provide a steady supply of hot water. Coupled with anti-scald devices, these water heaters allow you to achieve the perfect temperature for your morning shower. Self-cleaning toilets – Cleaning the toilet is a task that people generally dislike and frequently postpone. A new device is placed inside the water tank of the toilet and cleans the bowl automatically. No more scrubbing. Utah Rooter is prepared to offer you the latest technology in plumbing to make your life simpler and better. Happy... read more