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Maintenance Tips for Your Hot Water Heater

Posted by on 3:17 pm in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Maintenance Tips for Your Hot Water Heater

Maintenance Tips for Your Hot Water Heater

As homeowners, we often take our hot water heater for granted.  We rarely stop to think about how much we rely on it for bathing, cleaning, running dishwashers and doing laundry.  The moment something goes wrong, however, we realize just how important this frequently overlooked appliance is to our comfort and well-being.  To make sure your hot water heater continues to work its best, we’ve put together a few simple tips to keep it operating seamlessly. Check Regularly for Leaks in and Around Your Water Heater.  Make sure that there is no standing water and there are no signs of water damage.  If you do suspect a leak, call a plumbing professional to come and repair the problem. Drain Your Tank.  A couple of times a year, hook up a garden hose to your hot water heater and drain some water out.  This is an easy way to remove any debris that has collected in your tank and helps to maintain its efficiency. Reduce the Temperature.  If your hot water ever comes out too hot to touch, you’ve got the temperature set way too high.  Set your thermostat to 120 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure that you are not needlessly overheating water – and of course to make sure that no one in your home gets accidentally scalded! Check for Water Quality. Take a look at the water coming out of your tank.  Does it look rusty or have bits of sediment in it?  If so, it’s time to call in a plumber to assess the situation. Test your Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve.  This important component ensures that neither the pressure nor the temperature in your tank exceeds safety requirements.  Make sure it’s working by opening the valve and making sure that water comes out easily and stops as soon as you close the...

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Plumber’s Tips for Buying a New Home

Posted by on 2:18 pm in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Plumber’s Tips for Buying a New Home

Plumber’s Tips for Buying a New Home

House hunting can be a fun and exciting venture, whether as a first time home buyer or a well-seasoned purchaser. While making sure that the home fits your needs for size, comfort and location, consider adding some basic plumbing checks to your inspection list as well. Plumbing problems are often overlooked in the process of selecting a new home, but can result in property damage and costly repairs if they go undetected. To help you make an informed decision on this large capital expenditure, we’ve put together a few tips to help make sure your new move doesn’t come with any plumbing surprises. Check the flow of your drains: Don’t be shy to go around the house and try out every faucet and toilet. • Make sure toilets flush easily and drain completely, and that there’s no water or signs of leakage around the base of the toilet as well. • Fill each sink with water and then allow it to drain. Watch for slow moving drains that could be a sign of a blockage somewhere down the line. Inspect pipes: If you see old lead pipes, be aware that these must be replaced and that there is a great possibility for leaks somewhere in or around your home. Take a look at your water heater: Make sure there are no signs of corrosion, that the unit isn’t too old and that there is no obvious damage or leakage. Inspect your sewer drain: If you see signs of previous water issues around your drain, or there is standing water in your sewer, be sure to hire a professional for a camera inspection to rule out cracked pipes or other potentially expensive repairs. Look for signs of water damage: Check for water damage under or around any existing plumbing. A damaged dining room ceiling could indicate prior flooding in the upstairs bathroom. Don’t hesitate to call in a pro: Your house is one of the biggest investments of your life. Don’t leave it to chance. Hiring a qualified plumber to inspect your home will help you to make a sound home buying...

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Finding and Preventing Leaks

Posted by on 9:32 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Finding and Preventing Leaks

Finding and Preventing Leaks

Everyone dreads the thought of a burst water pipe or a blocked drain pipe, but few people consider the smaller, less dramatic leaks that can cause costly damage and even serious health concerns.  So, without the obvious rush of water and ensuing panic of a major water issue, how do you know what lurks behind the walls and under your floors?  We’ve got a few tips to help you catch a leak before it causes big problems. Keep an eye on your water bill. Have you seen a jump in your water bill with no explanation?  This can be indicative of a slow leak somewhere in your home.  Don’t let this spike in fees go unanswered. Look for discolouration in your walls or flooring. This can be a sign of water pooling in a specific area. Bubbling of paint is a solid indicator of excess water inside your walls. This is a sign that is not to be ignored! Sagging ceilings or floorboards can also mean you have a water problem that needs addressing. Mold and mildew as well, whether in the basement or anywhere else inside the house often means you have an issue with water, and could be evidence of a leak inside your walls or under the floor. This problem needs to be addressed immediately for the health and safety of your family. If you do find signs of water damage inside your home, be sure to call a professional as soon as possible.  Not only will it be more cost efficient to repair the problem sooner rather than later, but it will also avoid or limit the exposure your family will have to unpleasant odours and harmful mold and mildew spores.  Modern technology allows us to look at your pipes without taking your plumbing apart and helps us take an exact approach with no wasted time or expense.  Trust the experience of our Rite Tech team to fix your leaky pipes and make your house safe and dry...

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Still Using Chemical Drain Cleaners? Here’s Why You Should Stop

Posted by on 10:24 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Still Using Chemical Drain Cleaners? Here’s Why You Should Stop

Still Using Chemical Drain Cleaners? Here’s Why You Should Stop

Uh-oh! The drain in the kitchen sink is clogged. Do you: a) Grab a plunger and go to town b) Call your friendly, neighbourhood Kelowna plumbing expert c) Reach for the bottle of chemical drain cleaner under the sink If your answer was C, we have some bad news for you! Chemical drain cleaners are terrible for your plumbing system and even worse for the environment. If that’s not enough for you, here are a few more reasons why you should stop using them. Chemical Skin Burns If you have used a chemical drain cleaner, and the clog is not completely removed, the toxic material will stick to the source of the clog. When that clog is finally removed, it will be coated with a fine layer of material that is corrosive. That means it can cause chemical burns to the skin, and if you think that’s bad for your hand, imagine what it could do to your eyes! They Cause Lasting Damage to Pipes Were you under the impression that the source of the clog was the only thing chemical drain cleaners would eat away at and dissolve? Nope! Chemical drain cleaners can also eat away at PVC piping creating a far more serious problem than a little clog. What’s worse, if the source of your drainage issue is a damaged pipe, the toxic substance you just poured down the drain could now be leaking into other parts of your home. They Don’t Really Work Most of the Time When it comes to clearing drain clogs, there is no substitute for good, old-fashioned elbow grease. Chemical drain cleaners are most effective for clogs that originate from organic matter (hair, grease, soft food, etc.) For other solid materials, which more often the cause of clogged pipes, chemical drain cleaners are ineffective, and they’ll leave you with a sink full of toxic sludge to clean up on top of a clogged drain. Rite Tech Plumbing is interested in more than just providing emergency plumbing in Kelowna. We want to help you understand how the plumbing systems in your home work so that you can avoid that emergency call in the first place. Browse our blog posts for plumbing information and advice, and feel free to contact us at any time at (250) 681-0089 for the expert service and advice to keep your plumbing problem...

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Plumbing Tips for Kelowna Homeowners

Posted by on 11:08 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Plumbing Tips for Kelowna Homeowners

Plumbing Tips for Kelowna Homeowners

While plumbing is what we think about all day, we know that most homeowners give very little thought to the waste and water systems inside their home.  That is, until something goes horribly wrong.  No one wants to deal with emergency plumbing issues, so we thought we’d give you a few easy tips to keep things running smoothly. Be careful of what goes down your drain. It seems simple, but clogs in your drains from food, hair, soaps or other foreign objects can build up and cause serious problems.  Not only are they challenging and dirty to clean, but they can lead to bigger, more daunting complications if left untreated.  Use a strainer in each drain to catch all of this unwanted debris.  A painless solution that can save a whole lot of hassle.   Be a conscientious flusher.  If your toilet tends to clog frequently, consider your family’s flushing habits.  If anything but human waste and toilet paper are making their way into the bowl, you’ve got a problem waiting to happen.  Paper towels, sanitary products and even personal wipes should always be discarded in a trash bin.   Don’t use chemical drain agents. We understand.  The toilet is clogged, and you need a quick fix.  But those chemicals can cause long term damage to your plumbing and lead to costly repairs down the road.  Try snaking the drain to clear debris instead.  This breaks up the clog without causing bigger problems.   Never put grease down the sink. We’ve heard many clients insist that running the hot water while you pour grease down the drain will prevent it from solidifying in your pipes.  Not true.  There is never a time when it’s a good idea to pour grease in your sink.  At some point along the way, that sticky mess will coat the inside of your drain, trapping other debris and causing a serious clog. Of course, if plumbing problems do arise that you can’t seem to tackle yourself, we’re here to help.  Call the friendly team at Rite Tech 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for all of your plumbing...

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Fall Plumbing Checklist

Posted by on 11:14 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Fall Plumbing Checklist

Fall Plumbing Checklist

As we move on from the lazy days of summer towards the cooler, rainier weather of autumn, it’s a good idea to go through a few simple checks to make sure your plumbing is up to standard for the season ahead.  Being proactive can help save the hassle and cost of emergency repairs and can prevent serious water damage to your home. Three steps to prepare your home for the season: Make sure to clear all of your gutters so they are free of leaves and debris. As we approach the rainy season, you will want to make sure that there are no blockages in your drainage system that could back up and potentially lead to problems over the winter. Catch basins and storm water sumps should be cleared as required as well to make sure they are ready to do their job for the wet weather ahead. Make sure to drain hoses and turn off all of your outside taps. If your home is equipped with an indoor shut off valve, you can turn your outside water off there.  If not, you can turn off the taps from the outside and either invest in a faucet cover or simply wrap the tap and cover it in plastic to protect it from freezing. Planning to be away from home? If you are going to the sunny south this winter, or anywhere else for that matter, consider a couple of simple steps to protect your home while you’re away: Resist the urge to turn the heat off entirely. You may think it makes sense to save your heating dollars when no one’s home, but keeping your thermostat set at a low setting will help to prevent freezing pipes while you are away. Turn off the main water supply to the house. In the event that you do have a plumbing issue while you’re away, this will prevent the water from freely flowing until you return.  So, while you might still have some repairs to make, you won’t be dealing with major water damage as well. Contact us today at (250)...

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Don’t Throw Money Down the Drain!

Posted by on 11:16 am in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Don’t Throw Money Down the Drain!

Don’t Throw Money Down the Drain!

Everybody gets a drain clog from time to time, but not everybody knows what to do about it. In addition to avoiding the common causes of clogged drains, and taking a DIY approach for simple drain clogs, you may be tempted to hire a drain cleaning service. Here are some steps you can take to make sure you select a reputable company for this specialized work. How Long Has the Company Been in Business? Drains are the backbone of your home’s plumbing infrastructure. Taking proper care of them requires lots of skill and expertise. If you are interviewing a drain cleaning company and they don’t seem to know the ins and outs of plumbing and drains, you could spend a lot of money cleaning up after a cheap service! Ask how long they’ve been in business, and check them out for an online presence. Do they Provide Written Estimates A professional drain cleaning service should provide costs upfront for their services. You should know, before agreeing to move forward, if your job is a flat rate or if you will be billed by the hour, and you should have that all of that information in the form of a written estimate. A company that is not willing to provide this level of detail should make you suspicious. Do They Stand Behind Their Work with a Warranty? In addition to written estimates detail the service they will (and will not) provide, ask a prospective drain cleaning company what kind of warranty they offer on their work. If they can’t give you a reasonable estimate of the cost and time it will take to perform their own services; it’s a big red flag about the quality of their work. You’ll find you are much better off finding a professional Kelowna plumber to address your concerns about your drains, rather an inexperienced firm that may not be around in a year if there are any problems. Rite Tech Plumbing has the experience and local Kelowna knowledge that homeowners have come to rely upon for regular and emergency plumbing repairs. We’re happy to answer your plumbing-related questions and willing to take the time to explain exactly what we’re doing when we complete a plumbing repair. Contact us today at (250)...

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Toilet Problems: What’s that Sound?

Posted by on 2:11 pm in Plumbing Blog | Comments Off on Toilet Problems: What’s that Sound?

Toilet Problems: What’s that Sound?

You haven’t lived until you have been awoken by the sound of a strange noise emanating from the toilet in the middle of the night. It has probably been there for weeks, but now, when you’re desperately trying to get back to sleep, it seems like the loudest sound in the world. Can you wait until tomorrow morning to call for an emergency plumbing repair? Well, that depends on the nature of the noise. Whistling Dixie If the sound you hear is a distinct whistling sound, rather like when the kettle reaches a boil, the problem is most likely excessive water pressure. While owners of older homes may be jealous, this is a problem that will require a visit from the plumber. However, if you can sleep through it, you can safely leave it until the morning. Tiny Gurgles If you’re wondering if that sound was your partner’s stomach or the toilet down the hall, it means there is very likely a clog in your toilet. You may be able to dislodge it with a plunger in the morning successfully, but if not, be sure to call a plumber for help and review our guide to avoid clogged drains for the future. This is not generally considered a plumbing emergency, but try to avoid flushing until the clog has been removed. Humming a Tune Pay attention to the time when the toilet is making noise. Is it right after it has been flushed? Maybe it’s a few minutes later when the tank has filled, but the flap doesn’t close all the way. In either case, toilet parts are relatively inexpensive and easy to replace in a DIY repair. From valves to float balls, you can replace these items yourself. But, if you’d rather not, you can place one call to Rite Tech Plumbing and we will be only too happy to help. However, take notes on the time and nature of the sound; it will help us quickly and easily diagnose the problem. Rite Tech Plumbing is here to help you avoid an emergency plumbing repair. By learning about the more common plumbing issues around the house on our Kelowna plumbing blog, you can save yourself a lot of time and heartache! But, if you do need a plumber in a hurry, you can always reach us at (250) 681-0089. Contact us...

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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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