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Plumbing Problems to Watch for When House Shopping

Posted by on 3:58 pm in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Plumbing Problems to Watch for When House Shopping

Plumbing Problems to Watch for When House Shopping

If you are buying your first home, congratulations! It’s a big step, but with some careful planning, you will do just fine. Experienced homeowners may be able to tell you about common Kelowna plumbing problems they have experienced in their home, but often signs of those troubles require living in the space for a while. To avoid buying plumbing trouble when shopping for a home, we have some ideas about what you should be on the lookout for in addition to an open layout and a two-car garage. Fresh Paint on the Ceiling Many homeowners will apply a fresh coat of paint before listing a home for sale, but few will go to the trouble of painting the ceiling – especially if it’s only in one area. If that area happens to be directly below the kitchen or a bathroom, that’s a sign there has been a previous leak. Be sure to ask about it before putting in an offer. Low Water Pressure Try flushing the toilet and turning on the tap right after. If there’s only a trickle coming out, know that there is some work that can be done to increase water pressure, but none of those fixes come cheap. Low water pressure may not seem like a big deal, but once you’re living in a house where you can’t brush your teeth upstairs because the dishwasher is running on the main floor, it can quickly become the bane of your existence. Proceed with caution! Inspect the Water Heater It’s easy to forget about the water heater because it’s tucked away in the basement, but a crack can lead to flooding and replacement can be expensive. Check to see how old it is (there is usually a tag left behind at installation) and look for signs of a broken water heater like rust or peeling of the finish. It might not be a reason to pass on your dream home, but an impending charge for repairs or hot water heater replacement could give you some leverage in negotiating an offer. Taking the time to look for signs of Kelowna plumbing problems when you’re buying a home can help you avoid a costly mistake. However, we believe that no plumbing problem is too big to overcome. Call us at (250) 681-0089 for answers to all of the questions you might think to ask of a Kelowna...

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5 Secrets No Other Kelowna Plumber Will Share (but we will…)

Posted by on 10:40 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on 5 Secrets No Other Kelowna Plumber Will Share (but we will…)

5 Secrets No Other Kelowna Plumber Will Share (but we will…)

We believe the best way to build trust is by providing fast, reliable, honest service as a Kelowna plumbing contractor. As part of that service, we believe educating consumers about the common sources of emergency plumbing repairs and sharing ways to avoid them is part of the job. There are at least five secrets no other Kelowna plumber will share, but we’re happy to do so because providing the best value for our customers, current or prospective, is the key to our success. Replace Rubber Washing Machine Hoses Washing machines come stock with rubber hoses to attach to the water source. Those hoses leak and crack at an alarming rate, and washing machine leaks are one of the most common causes of an emergency plumbing repair. Replace those rubber hoses with stainless steel, and your chances of a wet basement are significantly reduced. Running Toilets are An Easy Fix If you find yourself jiggling the toilet handle to get it to stop running several times a day, the flap valve needs to be replaced. Of course, you can call a plumber to take care of this repair for you, but you should know that the replacement parts only cost a couple of dollars, and it’s an easy fix. Liquid Drain Cleaners are Corrosive A skeletal hand image on the side of a bottle indicates that the material therein is corrosive, meaning that it can cause a chemical burn if it touches your skin. But your hands and eyes aren’t the only things liquid drain cleaners will burn! These products can damage pipes and cause a greater problem than the original clog. Instead, invest in an auger that will help clear plumbing clogs for years to come. Call a Kelowna Plumber for Advice Sometimes, a call to your local Kelowna plumber is all it will take to diagnose the source of your plumbing repair issue. If we can save you some time and money by answering a quick question over the phone, at Rite Tech plumbing we’re happy to do so! Kelowna Plumbers at Rite Tech are Professionals If you need a shower curtain rod hung or a faucet washer replaced, by all means, feel free to contact a handyman from the Yellow Pages. However, for more complex plumbing repairs, know that the process to become a licensed plumber is a lengthy one. If you get a quote for a plumbing repair job that seems too good to be true, it may be because you’re not working with a licensed plumber. Don’t be afraid to ask!   At Rite Tech Plumbing, we don’t need to keep secrets. We’re committed to providing value for our customers by providing honest, reliable Kelowna plumber repairs. Call us at (250) 681-0089 prompt service, even when you need an emergency plumbing repair. We’re here to...

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When is Irrigation System Repair Recommended?

Posted by on 11:22 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on When is Irrigation System Repair Recommended?

Irrigation is a process that delivers the exact amount of water that plants need at regular intervals. Irrigation systems can run from simple pop-up sprinklers you can buy at a home supply store to complex arrangements that care for entire crops. The type of irrigation system you may be most familiar with is the type used by landscapers to help manage the watering requirements of new installations they provide. Irrigation systems are an efficient and effective way to maintain a lawn and garden while observing Kelowna watering restriction guidelines. However, sometimes the system doesn’t work as expected. Learn how to determine if you should repair or replace your irrigation system. How to Tell if Your Irrigation System is Broken There are a few tell-tale symptoms of a problem with the irrigation system, and some are more obvious than others. Three common signs of problems with the irrigation system include: Low (or Nonexistent) Water Pressure Leaky Pipes Damaged Sprinkler Heads The urgency of your call to a plumber for irrigation system repair will depend on the severity of the issue. A malfunctioning sprinkler needs replacement to preserve the integrity of the landscape, but it’s less of an emergency plumbing repair than something like a large pond forming on a commercial property. When to Repair Irrigation vs. Replace the System One of the key factors in determining whether or not you should consider irrigation repair vs. replacing the irrigation system is the age and the original cost of the system. If you purchased a relatively inexpensive set at the hardware store and it has served for a couple of seasons, it may be time to think about putting it out of its misery. However, a more complex – and therefore expensive – irrigation system can provide many years of use with proper care and maintenance. In the latter case, it’s probably worth it to engage a Kelowna plumber for irrigation repair. As spring is nearly upon us, the time may be right to think about landscaping and the irrigation systems that care for your lawn and garden. If you already have an irrigation system and it is in need of repair, you will know that soon enough! Fear not, Rite Tech Plumbing is available for all types of Kelowna plumbing repairs, including irrigation repairs. Call us at (250) 681-0089 for expert plumbing repairs and prompt, professional...

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Why is it Important to Have a Sump Pump?

Posted by on 9:33 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Why is it Important to Have a Sump Pump?

Many people would prefer not to think about what goes into the plumbing systems in their homes. That’s a shame because the more you learn about the systems affected by home maintenance, the better equipped you are to make informed decisions about protecting your home. Take sump pumps, as an example. Sump pumps are used to prevent flooding and to protect your home’s foundation from dampness. Now that you have a basic understanding what a sump pump is used for, let’s take some time to discover why it is important to have one in your Kelowna home. Sump Pumps Protect Against Mould Mould is caused by an excess of moisture and a lack of ventilation. While not all types of mould are harmful, it’s certainly not a substance that you want to see a lot of in your home, and some mould spores can be very damaging to human health. Furthermore, the conditions that lead to mould can also result in a musty odour that can cling to virtually every porous surface in your home, and is nearly impossible to remove. Using a sump pump, and making sure it’s working, can help avoid these problems altogether. Sump Pumps Can Stave Off Water Damage Did you know that water damage has overtaken fire as the leading reason for home insurance claims in Canada? Did you also know that your home insurance company will assess what mitigating steps you took to protect your home, such as installing a sump pump, when determining the amount of your claim? It’s true! The cost of installing a sump pump is nothing compared to what you will pay to repair your home in the event your insurance company decides you did not take adequate steps to protect your home from water damage! Stay Protected in Power Outages The kinds of big storms that lead to flooding are also the kind that tend take out the power, at least temporarily. If you are choosing to add a sump pump in the basement of your home, be sure to select one that comes equipped with a battery backup mechanism. Your Kelowna plumber can help you choose a sump pump that will protect your home in all types of weather. Looking for more ways to keep water out of your Kelowna home? Contact Rite Tech Plumbing at (250) 681-0089. We offer expert advice and prompt, professional plumbing repairs – even in an...

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4 Common Basement Plumbing Issues

Posted by on 1:31 pm in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on 4 Common Basement Plumbing Issues

While every home in Kelowna is unique, when it comes to plumbing problems, there are some that are fairly common to certain areas of every house. For example, when we get a call from a customer about the basement, there is a good chance it’s one of these four problems. Help protect your home from plumbing emergencies by keeping an eye out for these conditions. Appliances Gone Wild Picture this: You walk into the basement, there is an inch of water on the floor, and you have no idea where it’s coming from. You (correctly) suspect a plumbing problem, but don’t even know where to start looking to find the source. Did you know that a clogged washing machine hose is often the culprit? To avoid leaks, inspect the hose often to make sure it’s cleared of dirt and debris so the washing machine can drain Malfunctioning Sump Pumps From clogs and broken parts to a pump that won’t stop running, when the sump pump acts up, it’s bound to be a contributor to flooding in the home. Be sure to clean your sump pump regularly by removing dirt or other debris to prolong its life and keep it running smoothly. Frozen Pipes A frozen pipe can burst if not addressed right away, and that turns a small problem into a major emergency. Taking proper winter plumbing maintenance steps before the cold weather kicks in is the best way to avoid the plumbing challenge of frozen pipes. Signs of a frozen pipe, aside from the lack of water from an affected tap, include unusual noises, wet patches on walls, and persistent plumbing problems. You can use a space heater, hair dryer or warm towel to thaw the pipe, but if the pipe is inaccessible, a call to a plumber is in order. Hot Water Heater Problems We don’t give the water heater in our home much thought – until it stops working. A morning without a hot shower is a good way to remember why it’s there! There are maintenance steps you can take to keep your hot water heater working as it should, but a total loss of hot water or a leaking tank should always be treated as a real plumbing emergency. No matter where the plumbing problem is in your Kelowna home, we can help. Give Rite Tech Plumbing a call at (250) 681-0089 for prompt, professional service. We are available 24/7 for regular and emergency plumbing...

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3 Plumbing Resolutions for 2017

Posted by on 8:46 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on 3 Plumbing Resolutions for 2017

There are many things we have the best intentions of doing at any time of year, but we just don’t get around to it. Home maintenance and improvement tasks are no exceptions. As a new year is upon us, take advantage of the quiet times around the holidays to make some changes in habits around the house. We suggest starting with your approach to plumbing maintenance around the house. 2017 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Plumbing System Stay ahead of plumbing emergencies by making a pledge to keep these New Year’s Resolutions around the house: Learn how your plumbing systems work. Nobody sets out to cause damage to the plumbing systems in the house deliberately. Often, problems with clogged drains and damaged water spouts come about because we simply did not know any better. This year, take the time to learn how the plumbing systems in your home function. Make sure you know how to turn off the main shut-off valve in the home, how to plunge a clogged toilet drain, and when to call in a professional plumber. Show your hot water heater some love. Your hot water heater works hard every single day to provide water at the right temperature for your daily life. In fact, most of us don’t give it any thought at all until it stops working. It doesn’t take a lot of work to maintain the hot water heater in your home, and a proactive approach can help you avoid the inconvenience of living without hot water and the expense of an emergency plumbing repair. Make sure pipes stay warm. One of the most common plumbing problems, particularly in the winter, is burst pipes. You can help avoid this and cut down on the costs of heating your hot water by insulating hot water pipes properly. As an added bonus, as you are insulating pipes, you will have an opportunity to give them a visual inspection for signs of drips, leaks and general wear and tear. It’s a great bonus review that can save you a lot of time, money and trouble down the road! Remember: Plumbing Emergencies Happen Try though you may to avoid it, sometimes winter plumbing problems lead to a true, after-hours emergency. If this has happened to you, we are ready, willing and able to help, even over the holidays. Contact us at (250) 681-0089 in Kelowna for your general and emergency plumbing...

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Do This to Avoid a Winter Plumbing Emergency!

Posted by on 10:07 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Do This to Avoid a Winter Plumbing Emergency!

Winter is on its way! Right now many of us are caught up in the hustle and bustle of getting ready for the holiday season ahead. We’re so busy, in fact, that it’s easy to forget about important steps to get your house ready for the cold weather. Plumbing troubles have a funny way of turning into emergencies quickly, and at the worst time possible. If you only do one thing to get ready for winter this year, make sure it’s turning off the water supply to the outdoor taps! Did You Turn the Water Off Outside? That’s one question you should ask yourself every year around Thanksgiving. But it’s not just a matter of turning off the water shut-off valve and calling it a day. To make sure outdoor faucets are ready for winter, complete these three steps: Disconnect any hoses that are attached to outdoor faucets Turn off the water valve from inside the house Open the tap outside all the way to make sure it is completely drained Leave the tap all the way open for the winter. Just in case any water was left trapped inside the pipe, leaving the valve open will give it somewhere to go when the freeze and thaw cycles of early spring are upon us. Signs of a Burst Water Pipe The most damaging consequence of forgetting to turn off the outdoor tap is a burst pipe. Evidence of a broken pipe includes bubbling or whistling noises when you turn on the water, puddles on basement floor or in the backyard (look for dark spots in the snow), and, of course, the obvious sign of no water at all. A broken pipe qualifies as a real plumbing emergency, and you should call a professional right away! You will have to turn off the main water shut-off valve to the house, so take some time now to learn where that is and how much time you need to do it. A little extra time spent getting the pipes ready for winter can save a big headache when you avoid a winter plumbing emergency. But if you missed your chance, our Kelowna plumbing team is ready for emergency repairs when you need us. Give us a call at (250) 681-0089 for quick...

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Can You Fix a Hot Water Heater Without a Plumber?

Posted by on 9:48 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Can You Fix a Hot Water Heater Without a Plumber?

A broken hot water heater is one of those plumbing problems that can really sneak up on you. Unless it’s a large obstruction, a slow drain will get progressively worse, but a hot water heater can just stop working without warning. The timing and the cause of the problem will determine whether or not you need professional intervention. Though it seems like a simple matter of getting a really pot to boil, hot water heater repair can be pretty complicated. Before you attempt a DIY hot water heater fix, learn the causes of common problems, and when you should absolutely call a Kelowna plumber for hot water heater repairs.   No Hot Water When you have no hot water, it’s more than a little inconvenient. Showering, washing dishes and getting ready for work in the morning are impossible. It’s important to determine whether you have NO hot water, or if you don’t have enough to carry on with your daily routines. When you don’t have enough hot water, build up in the tank may be to blame and flushing the hot water tank may help. It could also be a problem with the thermostat which may have been accidentally bumped to a lower temperature, so be sure to check the settings. However, if you have no hot water at all and you have already checked the settings, you need to call a plumber to investigate.   Noisy Hot Water Tank If you notice an unusual sound coming from the hot water tank, it could be a simple matter of cleaning the heating elements to get things back to normal. If the thought of locating the heating elements and cleaning them fills you with dread, a quick call to a hot water heater expert can get the problem taken care of right away.   Hot Water Tank Leak A leaking hot water tank should always be treated as a plumbing emergency. It may be a problem with a hose that connects to the tank, or with the tank itself. First and foremost, before you do anything else, cut the power to the hot water tank! The next step is turning off the water, followed closely by placing a call to a plumber. Living without hot water isn’t something we’re accustomed to in the modern world, for a lot of excellent reasons. If the water temperature in your house is freezing you out, call us at (250) 681-0089 at any time of day or night. Our Kelowna plumbers are available for emergency plumbing repairs after...

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4 Surprising Ways to Avoid Clogged Drains

Posted by on 1:17 pm in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on 4 Surprising Ways to Avoid Clogged Drains

Sometimes, there’s a problem with your drain that is completely unavoidable, like one that was incorrectly installed and will never work right. However, underlying structural problems are very rarely the culprit when plumbers receive calls about clogged drains. It’s usually something that started off small and grew into something unmanageable. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so here are four surprising ways that are inexpensive and easy to implement to avoid clogged drains in your Kelowna residence.   Flush Wisely Feminine hygiene products, baby wipes and even dental floss are all made of fibrous materials that are not meant for indoor plumbing systems. Dispose of these items in the trash, not the toilet!   Take Care of Your Mane Brushing your hair before a shower or bath helps to remove loose strands that would otherwise go down the drain. If you implement this step, and then add a mesh drain cover to catch whatever was left behind, you will dramatically cut down on the amount of hair going down the drain. If the hair doesn’t end up in the drain in the first place, it can’t cause a clog.   Oil and Drains Don’t Mix We get it; it seems harmless to pour a little cooking oil or bacon grease down the drain, but it’s not a good idea. Tell us, have you ever left that grease sitting around for a while in the pan? Do you want to fish that gross, congealed mess out of the drain? Of course not! So save yourself some trouble and put used cooking oil in the appropriate garbage bin.   Practice Safe Dishwashing After you finish hand-washing your dishes, leave the hot water on for a little while to give any food waste a chance to run right through the drain. Throwing some baking soda or white vinegar in the sink while the hot water is already running will help to break up any grease debris. While you could do this every day if you want to, it’s not necessary. About once a week should be enough to do the trick. If you already have a clogged drain on your hands, and attempts to clear it yourself have been less than successful, we’re happy to help. Give us a call at (250) 681-0089 and we’ll have your drain flowing in no...

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Flood Prevention Tips from Plumbing Experts

Posted by on 9:32 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Flood Prevention Tips from Plumbing Experts

Flooding is the fastest way to suck all of the joy out of a beautiful summer’s day. Flooding in the backyard is the destroyer of lawns and the enemy of flowers, but it’s not nearly as bad as flooding inside the house. Perhaps the worst thing about flooding is the fact that it’s almost always preventable. If you’re hoping to stave off the effects of flooding in and around your home, consider these flood prevention tips from the Kelowna plumbing experts.   Remember the “Land” in Landscaping If there is a significant portion of concrete in your yard, like a concrete slab patio or a poured concrete walkway, there is nowhere for rain water and runoff to go. However, if you replace that concrete with interlocking pavers or flagstone, there is enough space between the bricks and rocks to allow water to seep through and be absorbed back into the ground.   Extend Downspouts Away from the House We know downspouts aren’t very pretty to look at, but they provide a crucial function. Because of their lack of aesthetic appeal, downspouts often stop far too close to the house, which lends itself to a lot of problems, not the least of which is basement flooding. To prevent basement flooding because they’re too short, downspouts should end at least three feet from the house.   Know the Water Valves Are you absolutely sure you know where all the water shut-off valves are in the house? There’s the main shut-off valve, which is the right place to start in a flooding emergency, but it’s pretty inconvenient to turn off water to the whole house when the source of a water problem is pretty obvious. Take some time now to learn where the shut-off valves are for all of the sinks, tubs and toilets in the house, and make sure they turn easily so you can easily flip them off in a hurry.   Make Sure the Source is Located Once you’ve changed the landscaping and extended the downspout, if you’re still having issues with flooding, it’s time to consult with a professional before it gets any worse. We recommend starting with a plumber to inspect the appliances and pipes in the house for signs of damage or leaks. We’ve been helping Kelowna residents get more out of their homes since 2008, and we specialize in emergency plumbing repairs. We’re here to answer your call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at (250)...

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