7 Common Plumbing Fails to Avoid

Some plumbing mistakes cause minor disturbances. Others are catastrophic, sending ripples through the universe, or at least through your drainage system and bank account. To make you feel a little less alone and to help you avoid some of the most frequent mistakes that people make when trying to repair their plumbing systems, we’ve compiled this little list of common fails.

Mistake #1: When You Take Something Apart and Forget How to Put It Back Together

Most of us have done it: We set out to fix a small problem and end up creating a calamity. In fact, it’s probably one of the most common plumbing 7 Common Plumbing Fails to Avoidproblems to afflict DIYers.

  • The Problem: Maybe you thought you could replace that rusted pipe on your own, or perhaps you thought you could fiddle with that fixture without having to call in the professionals. Then, at the last minute, you forget what piece goes where and which end is which.
  • The Solution: If you’re stuck in a bind there are really only two options. 1) Fidget around until everything looks right, then cross your fingers and hope nothing explodes. 2) Call the professionals at MET Plumbing to repair your repair. And, don’t worry, we won’t judge; we’ve seen a thousand and one fixes go wrong.

 

Mistake #2: Violating the Plumbing Code

Although it sounds like a bad joke, the plumbing code is, in fact, a very real thing and violating it constitutes the greatest sin in the plumbing universe. To be more specific, the plumbing code is a massive book of rules and regulations that rivals the tax code in all of its monstrous complexity. Violating the Plumbing Code

  • The Problem: When you install that new toilet or water heater, you have to ensure that all your work meets a set of very specific criteria laid out in this monumental list of dos and don’ts. If it doesn’t, you could be in for a rude surprise—anything from a faulty pipe to a nasty note and a fine from the building inspector.
  • The Solution: Get your hands on a copy of the Universal Plumbing Code or the International Plumbing Code and start studying. If that doesn’t sound appealing, ring up the experts at MET Plumbing to install that new drainage system or do that handy toilet repair job for you. As licensed professionals, we’re fully knowledgeable in the ways of the code.

To help you get your feet wet when it comes to plumbing regulations, we’ve listed a number of the most common ways that people violate the plumbing code and how you can avoid the same mistakes.

 

Mistake #3: When You Don’t Leave Enough Leg Room Around Your Toilet

Mistake number two is no joke, either. If you fail to leave adequate space around your fixtures when you’re remodeling your bathroom or installing a When You Don’t Leave Enough Leg Room Around Your Toiletnew toilet, you’ll regret it later.

  • The Problem: Leg cramps or severe claustrophobia can result from insufficient space around toilets and basins in your bathroom. Tight space can also make it harder for you or your plumber to access the area and unclog a toilet.
  • The Solution: Essentially, the code says you must create enough space around the toilet and basins so that larger people can do their business without suffering undue discomfort. That means you must place toilets at least 18 inches away from the front wall and at least 15 inches away from the wall on the side.

While the regulations aren’t enough to turn your bathroom into a luxury spa, they are enough to provide basic comfort to nearly anyone, regardless of height, weight, or propensity to get leisurely while answering the call of nature.

 

Mistake #4: When Your Slope Slopes Too Much (Or Not Enough)

Did you know the pipe that carries waste away from your toilet must have a very specific slope or incline? Well, it does, and it’s best not to forget it.When Your Slope Slopes Too Much (Or Not Enough)

  • The Problem: When moving waste-bearing water away from the toilet, a drainage pipe has to perform a delicate balancing act. If the slope is too great, then the water will move too fast, leaving those pesky solids behind. That’s the surest way to come down with a case of clogged drains. On the other hand, if the slope is too slight, then the water will be unable to scrub the pipe walls clean.
  • The Solution: So, what is the magic number? While the Uniform Plumbing Code permits an incline of as little as 1/16 inch per feet, the sweet spot for any sized pipe is 1/4 inch per feet, according to at least one building inspector.

Perhaps that’s more than you ever wanted to know about the inner workings of your plumbing system, but now you can impress the trusty plumber from MET Plumbing when he pays you a visit.

 

Mistake #5: When You Forget to Vent Your Traps

This kind of trap doesn’t lock you in; it locks the bad stuff out. By bad staff, we mean anything from rats and mice to sewage and methane gas. The When You Forget to Vent Your Traps important thing to remember is that the trap must be properly ventilated.

  • Problem: Without proper ventilation, water can drain out, leaving your trap as dry as the Mojave Desert in summer and as useless as a plumber without a license (this might be a good time to mention that all of our plumbers at MET Plumbing are fully licensed).
  • The Solution: Make sure your trap is sufficiently ventilated. Also, make sure you’re using the right trap for the job. S-traps, for example, are not right for sink drains; you should use a P-trap, instead.

If you can’t make heads or tails of your vents and traps, then be sure to contact the specialists at MET Plumbing. We’ll be happy to tell you whether your pipes are up to snuff (or sniff).

 

Mistake #6: When You Forget to Install Clean-Outs

Even the most conscientious homeowner can’t avoid clogged drains. Fortunately, that’s why you have clean-outs. Or do you? When You Forget to Install Clean-Outs

  • The Problem: If you don’t have enough clean-outs or if you fail to put them in specific places, you make it more difficult for your favorite plumber to clear your pipes. You also risk getting one of those mean notes from one of those fussy inspectors.
  • The Solution: Follow the guidelines laid out in the Plumber’s Code to ensure that your clean-outs are located in the correct places throughout your house. Of course, you’ll have to figure out which code applies to your area, as there are different sets of regulations depending on the locale.

According to the Universal Plumbing Code, you must place a clean-out at a junction between a building drain and a building sewer or on horizontal branches that are separated by at least 100 feet. See the full guide for complete specifications.

 

Mistake #7: When You Place the Clean-Outs in Siberia

Clean-outs exist so a plumber can clear your drains of any clogs. If you put them in an impractical location—say a tight space that no human adult could access—then you defeat When You Place the Clean-Outs in Siberiathe purpose.

  • Problem: If your plumber has to squeeze into a ridiculously tight space, it will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to unclog those drains.
  • The Solution: Make sure all of your clean-outs are accessible, leaving an 18-inch clearance zone in front of every access point. For a pipe that’s only 2 inches or smaller, the UPC permits a 12-in. clearance. See the full guidelines for complete spacing information.

If you don’t remember all the little particulars laid out in the plumbing code, don’t worry. We won’t test you. If you ever plan to do some DIY work, however, it’s a good resource to know about. Although the Plumbing Code can be lengthy, complex, and insanely detailed, it’s there for a purpose: to make sure that all the pipes and fixtures in your home work properly and smoothly. If anything, this little list of fails should give you a newfound respect for the professional plumbing companies that keep your pipes running smoothly and your home free of sewage.

How to Handle Water Heater Drain Valve Leaks

Every water heater comes equipped with a valve that drains water from the heater. If you are experiencing problems with a water heater leaking, it could be a problem with the drain valve, pressure relief valve, or water line. More often than not, it’s related to the drain valve.

If it’s a problem with the drain valve, you can begin to identify it by looking for a puddle of water beneath the water heater. If you find a puddle, locate How to Handle Water Heater Drain Valve Leaksthe drain valve (usually placed toward the bottom of the heater) and look for any leaks coming out of it. If you see water leaking from that area, you have found the culprit. Luckily, there are a few troubleshooting options available.

  • Tighten the valve – Turn off the water heater by shutting off the power or turning the gas valve to pilot, then tighten the valve handle and valve stem nut.
  • Cap the outlet – Best for smaller leaks, buy and install a replacement cap from your local hardware store. This can work as a temporary fix until you replace the drain valve.
  • Replace the drain valve – Consult your water heater’s instructions for shutting off the water heater. Failure to follow instructions could result in serious damage to both you and the water heater. Once the heater is completely shut off and disconnected, you can drain the tank, replace the drain valve, and then restart the heater.

 

Remember, water heaters contain liquid at scalding temperatures. If you are inexperienced working with water heaters, attempting a fix-it-yourself scenario could pose serious hazards and risks. When in doubt, contact MET Plumbing at 281-599-3336.

 

How to Reduce the Cost of High Water Bills

Have you recently found yourself scratching your head over a skyrocketing water bill? Don’t fret! There are several common plumbing issues associated with high water bills, and, once you find the problem, you can easily decrease unnecessary expenses related to excess water usage. If you are having trouble identifying the source of the problem yourself, we recommend contacting a plumber to help you make a proper diagnosis.

Common causes of high water bills include:

  • Leaky Faucets
  • Running Toilets
  • Dripping Shower Heads
  • Broken Water Pipes
  • Water Softener Malfunctions

Common Plumbing Issues

Some plumbing problems are easier to find than others. For example, if your toilet continues to make the sound of running water long after flushing, then you know it’s a problem with the toilet. However, other water leaks aren’t always as easy to discover.

Before you begin looking for the source, be sure to turn off any running water in your home and then check for leaks in the following areas:

  1. Main Level: Check for leaky pipes under bathroom and kitchen sinks.
  2. Hot Water Heater: Listen to the hose and drain connected to the water heater. If you cannot hear running water, there might be a leak or blockage.
  3. Toilets: Listen to the connection at the water heater, if you hear running water there might be a leak.
  4. Swimming Pool: For homes with pools, there might be a leak if you have to regularly refill the water to maintain a full level.

If no water leaks are found in these areas, it could also be a problem with spigots, irrigation systems, or the main water line. For assistance with identifying and fixing water leaks, contact MET Plumbing today at 281-599-3336.

Plumbing Emergencies: What NOT to Do!

Plumbing Emergencies - What NOT to Do

At Met Plumbing, clients often call us at all hours of the day and night to rescue them from plumbing emergencies that can range in seriousness from the lighthearted to the dangerous. As a 24-hour plumber, we’re more than happy to get you out of any sticky situation that might arise, but we thought we’d provide a few tips to help you prevent plumbing emergencies in the first place, or at least to help you navigate the most panic-inducing leaks and clogs when they do happen. Here are the biggest plumbing DON’Ts we could think of.

 

DON’T: Arrive at the scene without an emergency kit.

When the experts at Met Plumbing arrive at your home to fix that leaky faucet or clogged toilet, they always come prepared with their handy plumbing emergency kit. Trying to fix a major plumbing problem without a trusty kit is like trying to wrestle an alligator without … well, it’s like trying to wrestle an alligator.

 

DON’T: Twiddle your thumbs.

No matter how insignificant it may seem, every plumbing problem should be taken seriously. A dripping showerhead may not seem like a big deal, DON’T Twiddle your thumbsbut  even the smallest leak can cost you a lot of money in water bills. Leaks are also great at wasting the planet’s precious resources. Best not to twiddle your thumbs and whistle past the leaking faucet. Instead, call our licensed and experienced plumbers to handle your water leak problem, no matter how big or small.

 

DON’T: Forget to replace your hoses.

Washing machines and dishwashers have at least one thing in common—they rely on hoses to get water to and from the units. Unfortunately, hoses wear out after repeated use. Forgetting to replace them every five years or so with stainless steel hoses is one of the surest ways to create a five-alarm plumbing emergency. When they do go bust, they rarely give a helpful warning beforehand. That means routine maintenance is the best way to avoid a panic situation.

 

DON’T: Start a plumbing project without knowing where in the world the main water shut-off valve is.

DONT Start a plumbing projectEven if you don’t need to turn off the main water valve, you should at least know where it is. If you run into a problem, you’re going to want to know where it is and how to turn it off quickly. The last thing you want to do is go on the plumbing version of an Easter egg hunt while your pipes are hemorrhaging water.

 

DON’T: Pour gallons of liquid drain cleaner down your sink.

You might never know it by the sheer quantity of liquid drain cleaners on the market, but dumping toxic chemicals down your sink may not be the best way to clear a pipe. Not only can those caustic substances burn through drain-clogging hairballs, but they can sometimes burn through the pipe itself (not to mention what it can do to your skin). On top of that, liquid drain cleaner is often ineffective, failing in its primary task of unclogging drains.

A better strategy is to keep your drain clear in the first place. Preventing grease or hair from ever entering the pipes is worth a few gallons of drain cleaner. Failing that, call in the professionals at Met Plumbing to clear those drains in no time at all (and you won’t even have to wear a hazmat suit).

 

DON’T: Fill your toilet with freshening tablets.

On a similar note, those fresheners you drop in your toilet can also wreak havoc. That’s because they, too, contain drain-eroding chemicals that can damage your plumbing over the long run. They can also lead to a clogged toilet if left to dissolve inside the pipes. Unfortunately, having a nice smelling toilet filled with pretty blue water doesn’t mean much if it doesn’t flush.

 

DON’T: Fix a water heater yourself.

Water heaters are notoriously difficult to fix. Sometimes they’re downright dangerous. If you are going to brave the hazards of the basement on your own, be sure to turn off the unit before touching anything else. That being said, even an apparently simple task like testing the temperature can prove challenging, if not hazardous. Failing to properly remove and replace the valve, for example, can lead to a sudden outpouring of searing hot water.

If you want to avoid burns, property damage, and overall devastation, stay away from the water heater and leave the job to the professionals at Met Plumbing, who specialize in repairing tank and tankless water heaters.

 

DON’T: Use the same water heater for decades.

Sadly, water heaters aren’t immortal. They, too, get old and die. With an average lifespan of about a decade, give or take a few years, they need replacing every now and then. Tell-tale signs that your unit needs some attention include cold water spills and leakage. In order to determine whether you need a simple repair or a full-on replacement, look at the installation date and consult a professional.

 

DON’T: Turn off the main water valve if it’s not necessary.

Sometimes you need to turn off the main water valve in order to fix a pressing plumbing problem. Sometimes you don’t. Knowing when to do so and DON’T Turn off the main water valvewhen not to do so can be the key to getting yourself out of a predicament.

Each fixture in your house—faucet, toilet, shower—should have its own shutoff valve. Called isolation valves, they allow you to turn off the water to each fixture without shutting down the entire house. Such a tool can come in handy if your wife is taking shower while you’re trying to repair the downstairs toilet. If turning off an isolation valve will do the job, then leave the main water valve alone. In fact, it’s good to shut off and on all of your isolation valves at least once a year to keep everything running smoothly and to lessen the risk of emergencies.

 

DON’T: Turn your toilet into a garbage can.

We’ve covered this one before in a previous how-to and how-not-to article, but it’s worth repeating. In fact, it’s worth screaming from the rooftops. Your toilet is not a trash can. It does not empty out at the local landfill. Paper towels, feminine products, hair products, make-up pads, ear swabs, children’s toys, dog toys, cats—they don’t belong in the toilet. If they end up there, you will wind up calling us at odd hours of the night, demanding to know why your bathroom has become a lake. While we’re delighted to do emergency toilet repair, we’d prefer you didn’t have to call us in the first place.

 

DON’T: Rely on duct tape as a permanent solution.

DON’T Rely on duct tape as a permanent solutionSome DIYers out there have advised homeowners to use duct tape to plug leaks and cracks. It’s a great solution for the short-term. In the long run, you’re going to need to fix or replace that drainage pipe. If you’re looking for a temporary solution, duct tape to your heart’s content. If you want your plumbing to survive the wear and tear of many months and years, call the skilled experts at Met Plumbing for a real patch-up job.

 

DON’T: Rely too heavily on DIY knowledge.

Most people trust their car to a mechanic, their financial portfolios to a qualified investment manager, and their heart to a cardiologist; so, why do so many people trust their plumbing to themselves?

Sometimes DIY plumbing jobs go as planned. Sometimes they succeed without any major mishaps. Just as frequently they can land you in a good deal of hot water (or cold water, as the case may be). All too often we’ve seen a do-it-yourselfer turn a minor plumbing problem into a major plumbing emergency.

 

DON’T: Confuse a contractor or handyman with a plumber.

General contractors and handymen are great at fixing any number of problems. They’re jacks-of-all-trades. Many of them are all-around good guys and gals. One thing a general contractor isn’t, though, is a plumbing expert. Calling a contractor to fix your clogged drains is a bit like calling your family doctor to operate on your blocked arteries. While both are great at what they do, they don’t do the same thing. When it comes to leaky pipes, clogged drains, faulty water heaters, or overflowing sinks, you need to call in the specialists.

 

DON’T: Forget to call Met Plumbing.

For all of your Texas plumbing needs, Met Plumbing is here to help. As a family-run business with over 20 years of professional plumbing experience,DON’T Forget to call Met Plumbing we can handle any emergency you throw at us. Serving the entire Houston Metro area, including Katy, the Woodlands, and Sugar Land, we provide everything from water heater repair and drain cleaning to kitchen plumbing services and toilet repair. Whether you have a major emergency or just need routine maintenance, call us at 281-599-3336 or fill out our online form to schedule a service call. You’ll be glad we MET!

 

What’s the Deal with Hard Water?

Let’s face it: Hard water is super annoying. Not only does it leave unsightly spots and stains on your shiny surfaces, but it can cause home appliances to go absolutely haywire. Some studies have shown that hard water can wreak havoc on your health, too. This is because it contains minerals like lime, silica, calcium, and magnesium.

After a while, these mineral deposits accumulate and often require support from local plumbing companies, and, in rare cases, a diagnosis from your primary physician.

Plumbing companies

One of the most common problems associated with hard water involves residue. Have you ever noticed white spots and streaks on your tableware after washing the dishes? That’s because you have hard water. Luckily, there are many solutions available to tackle the problem. We recommend having a soft water system installed in your home to combat buildup. Alternatively, distilled vinegar and little elbow grease is another great option for removing some of those tougher stains.

Appliances like water faucets, dishwashers, and washing machines are also at risk because the minerals found in hard water often lead to plumbing problems. If one of your appliances is on the fritz, there’s a good chance it is related to calcium and magnesium deposits left behind.

Perhaps most alarming of all, hard water can potentially affect physical health. One study found that babies living with hard water were 87% more likely to develop a skin condition known as eczema.1  Other findings reported risk factors for:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Growth retardation
  • Reproductive failure
  • Irregular bowel movements
  • Renal insufficiency2

Needless to say, soft water is the smart way to go. However, if you are experiencing problems with your appliances as a result of hard water buildup, give Met Plumbing a call today at 281-599-3336.

Sources

  1. http://www.webmd.com/children/news/20160601/hard-tap-water-linked-to-eczema-in-babies
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3775162/

What Causes Washing Machine Drainage Problems

Is that pesky washing machine acting up again? Don’t fret. Drainage issues are a common occurrence for these types of machines, and there are plenty of quick fixes for troubleshooting the problem. Here are a few key areas that can help you easily identify the culprit:

  1. Hose off: One of the most frequent issues related to water drainage involves the hose. If your machine is having trouble with the drainage system, make sure the hose does not have any kinks in it. If you find a kink, just straighten out the hose, and that should remedy the issue. If a problem continues to persist, try removing the hose between the bottom of the tub and the pump, and be sure to have a water pail on standby in case of spills.

Drainage system

Ever wondered where those phantom socks go after a load of laundry? There’s a good chance they wound up in the hose, which can cause clogs that prevent water from draining properly.

  1. Pump it up: Pumps can also cause all sorts of problems, so this is another key area to inspect if the hose solution doesn’t work. You should be able to hear the pump while the machine is operating. If it doesn’t make a sound, it might need to be replaced or inspected for jams.
  2. The ol’ switcheroo: Most washing machines have a sensor known as the lid switch or door switch. This switch prevents the machine from operating when the lid is open. A defective switch can cause the washing machine to encounter an error during the spin and rinse cycle.
  3. Belt it out: The drive belt is an essential component for a machine’s ability to function. Sometimes the belt simply needs to be readjusted back into its proper place. However, if the belt continues to fall out of line, this is a sign that it’s time for a replacement belt.

When in doubt, give your friends at Met Plumbing a call at 281-599-3336. Our experts are here to get your washing machine back up and running in no time.

10 Plumbing Myths That Are Costing You Money!

Some myths are fun; some are intriguing; and some are downright costly. Unfortunately, the vast majority of plumbing myths fall into the latter category. With quite a few tall tales out there regarding your toilet bowls and drainage systems, it can be hard to separate fact from fiction. To help you out, Met Plumbing has compiled a list of the 10 costliest myths circulating among homeowners today:

10 Plumbing Myths That Are Costing You Money

Myth #1: A Leaky Faucet Won’t Cause Any Serious Problems

That depends on how you define “serious.” While a dripping faucet won’t flood your bathroom, it may drain your bank account. In fact, next time you’re left scratching your head, wondering why your water bill keeps going up and up, you might want to check all of your sinks, toilets and bathtubs for water leaks.

Just think of it this way: Every time that bathroom faucet drips, you’re losing money. In fact, you might as well throw some loose change down the A Leaky Faucet Won’t Cause Any Serious Problemsdrain every time you pass by the sink. In the end, you could save up to 10 percent on your water bill simply by dealing with easy-to-fix water leaks.1

Ignoring leaking faucets is also wasteful, and wasting water is a dreadful way to pay back Mother Nature. Unfortunately, the cumulative environmental impact of all household leaks is remarkable, and not in a good way. Don’t believe us? Check out these hair-raising statistics, courtesy of the Environmental Protection Agency:

  • The average leak wastes more than 10,000 gallons of water annually. That’s enough to wash 270 loads of laundry.
  • All told, household leaks may waste more than 1 trillion gallons of water each and every year in the United States—enough to supply water to 11 million homes.
  • You could take more than 180 showers with the water that is wasted by a leaking faucet that drips at the rate of one drop per second.

 

Myth #2: You Can Sharpen Your Garbage Disposal Blades with Ice Cubes

Neither ice cubes nor eggshells will sharpen your garbage disposal blades. They are, however, effective at cleaning the blades. If you notice that your sink is starting to smell, throw a few ice cubes in and run the disposal. If you’re cooking up some fried eggs or a delicious omelet for breakfast, throw the eggshells down the sink instead of in the garbage. You won’t get sharper blades, but you will fresher blades.

 

Myth #3: You Can Throw Grease Down Your Sink if You Mix It with Boiling Water

You Can Throw Grease Down Your Sink if You Mix It with Boiling Water

Grease and other waste fats do to your drains about the same thing they do to your arteries—they clog them up by coating them in a layer of fat. Dumping that overflowing pot of greasy residue down the sink or flushing it down the toilet may seem like an easy enough solution, but we can promise you one thing: You’ll end up making a frantic call to your plumber before long.

Unfortunately, while many people know that dumping grease down the sink is a big no-no, they seem to have fallen for another harmful myth. Somehow word got around that mixing grease with boiling water would solve the problem entirely. It won’t. Boiling water does absolutely nothing—zilch, nada, nil—to break down the fat and reduce clogging. No matter how you slice it, grease belongs in the trash, not in your drains.

 

Myth #4: Your Water Heater Is Going to Explode

You know those terrifying banging and rumbling noises you hear emanating from your water heater? Many people hear those menacing sounds and think they’re in for an explosive night. Thankfully, there is no reason to panic. It may sound like a scene from a horror flick, but there’s a perfectly rational explanation for all that huffing and puffing. It’s just the heat trying to make its way through layers of sediment that has collected on the bottom of your tank after years of use. The resulting air bubbles create a lot of sound and fury, but they won’t lead to any deadly explosions.

That being said, the noises are indicative of a problem. While you won’t lose your life to an old water heater, you may lose a great deal of effectiveness and efficiency. If your unit is reaching old age—say 15 years—it might be about time to call up Met Plumbing for a new water heater installation.

 

Myth #5: You Should Use Lemon Peels to Freshen Your Disposal

You Should Use Lemon Peels to Freshen Your DisposalUnless you have a super heavy duty garbage disposal that can cut through anything, it’s better to throw those peels in the trash. Although the lemon will give off a nice smell, it may also clog your drain. The truth is that most garbage disposals can’t cut easily through tough things like lemon peels. Some also say that citric acid can corrode metal over the long run. If you need to freshen up your disposal, there are better options out there. All in all, soap and water are your best bet.

 

Myth #6: Flushable Wipes Are Flushable

Despite their name, flushable wipes are not actually flushable. Well, that depends on what you mean by flushable. Technically, they will flush, but they probably won’t make it past your drains, particularly if you use a lot of them. That’s because they are not biodegradable like toilet paper. In fact, overusing flushable wipes will not only lead to a clogged toilet, but may also stop up your entire drainage system. At the end of the day, your whole house may come to a standstill because of those inaptly named “flushable” wipes.

 

Myth #7: Bathroom Products Belong in the Toilet

It’s not only flushable wipes that people throw carelessly into their toilet bowls; it’s everything from paper towels and makeup removal wipes to tampons and maxi pads. If you want everything to keep working properly, follow one simple edict: Only toilet paper and you-know-what belongs in Bathroom Products Belong in the Toiletthe toilet bowl.

On the other hand, if you insist on flushing random bathroom products through your drainage system, you’ll keep on having to call your friendly plumber to unclog the toilet. Failing to heed this golden rule leads to the vast majority of clogged toilets throughout the country.

 

Myth #8: Bleach-Containing Tablets Are Safe for Your Toilet

Not if they’re the kinds that sit in the tank or bowl for long periods of time. It’s fine to stick bleach in your toilet bowl if you wash it out within 10 minutes but leaving it in the bowl will cause serious trouble. In the end, the bleach will degrade the working parts of your toilet. Talk about a plumbing nightmare. Within six months you’ll be ringing up the 24-hour plumber for emergency toilet repair, or even emergency toilet replacement.

 

Myth #9: Most Plumbing Work Is a Do-It-Yourself Job

This one is all too common. Many people think there’s nothing to it; that fixing a leaky faucet or unclogging the toilet is as simple and straightforward as sweeping the front porch or cooking a microwavable meal. Of course, if it were that easy, the world wouldn’t need plumbers. Sadly, many people turn small problems into monumental problems by going the DIY route. If anything, the popularity of do-it-yourself plumbing gives the professionals more work, not less.

The truth is that plumbing systems are more complex than most people realize. Unlike the average homeowner who might have watched the odd YouTube video, licensed plumbers, like the professionals at Met Plumbing, are trained to deal with the full range of problems, tools, materials, and safety concerns they might encounter. They also have years if not decades of valuable experience under their belt. If you have a problem, chances are they’ve dealt with it before.

 

Myth #10: It’s Difficult to Find a Local Plumber in a Hurry

If you’re looking for a good plumber that is ready to tend to your plumbing needs, you’ve stumbled upon the right site. At Met Plumbing, we offer professional water heater repair, toilet repair and general plumbing services. In fact, we’re proud to offer the best plumbing services in the Houston Metro area. With over 20 years of experience, owner Marion Tucker and his team of licensed plumbers are ready to tackle any problem you might have in an organized and timely manner. You can count on Met Plumbing to be there for you when you call!

Whether your water heater is going bang in the night or your bathroom faucet is dripping all through the day, we can help. Give us a call at (281) 599-3336 or send us an email at csr@metplumbing.com. You’ll Be Glad We Met!

 

Sources:

  1. Environmental Protection Agency – https://www3.epa.gov/watersense/pubs/fixleak.html

 

Reasons Why Your Pipes Could Be Clogged!

Water comes into the home from a main water line, and leaves the home through sewage and drainage pipes. Over time, water may start draining slower and, eventually, it can result in clogged toilets, sinks, and drains. There can be a variety of reasons for clogs, including:

  • Toddlers – Young children are fascinated with water, especially when potty training. They are trying to figure out where the toilet paper goes when the toilet is flushed. This can lead to them experimenting with excessive amounts of toilet paper, toys, stuffed animals, and more!

Clogged Toilet

  • Hair – Everyone sheds hair while bathing and showing, as well as the hair that goes down the drain from shaving. Over time, the hair can bunch up and turn into a fuzzy hair monster and stop water from draining.
  • Oil/Grease – It can be tempting to pour bacon grease and cooking oil down the kitchen sink. Even while running hot water, the grease and oil attaches to the outside walls of the pipes, much like the fatty deposits people experience within their arteries.
  • Paper – Non-biodegradable papers and paper towels flushed down the toilet can clog up the drain and cause the toilet to overflow into the bathroom.
  • Soap/Shaving/Hair Gels – Gels can stick to the walls of drain pipes and merge with fuzzy hair monsters to create even bigger clogs.

Contact Met Plumbing at 281-599-3336 now for problems with water leaks, slow draining sinks, clogged toilets, and more. You’ll be glad we Met!

Can I Use the Toilet as a Trash Can? and Other Plumbing FAQs

Can I Use the Toilet as a Trash Can

The answer is no; you may not use your toilet bowl as the family trash can. That might not be one of the first questions the average homeowner asks their plumber, but judging by how often we find Junior’s toothbrushes and Spot’s squeaky toys lodged in pipes, it might as well be.

There are, however, some common queries that come up again and again in this business. From questions about that terrifying smell in the sink to questions about payment options, there are a few things you have probably asked (or probably should ask) your plumbing company before they start in on that toilet repair or water heater installation.

 

Are all of your plumbers licensed?

It’s one of the first questions you should ask the company that is about to fix your clogged toilet or leaky pipe. The answer should be yes. If it’s not, you might want to look elsewhere.

At Met Plumbing, we’re proud to be fully qualified. That means that each and every one of our plumbers is licensed to handle all of your plumbing needs.

 

Can I pour grease down my kitchen drain?

No. Don’t do it—not even if your life depends upon it. That is, unless you want to clog your drains. Grease is great at stopping up your drainage system and forcing you to call a plumber in desperation at seven o’clock on a Friday evening. If you would rather not be in that position, try dumping that grease in the trash can instead. Can I pour grease down my kitchen drain

Already clogged your drains or concerned that they may clog in the future? Not to worry – We can fix it! Call us today and schedule one of our licensed professionals to come to your home to clean, clear and camera your drains.

 

How do I know if I need to replace my water heater?

There are a few tell-tale signs that you need to throw your old water heater out the window (not literally, of course). If your hot water smells like rotten eggs, turns the color of rust, or simply becomes freezing cold, you might want to investigate further. A leak or a loud rumbling noise may mean it’s time to replace your unit.

Here at MET, we specialize in Water Heater repairs and installations. Our licensed professionals will talk with you concerning the best solution for you and your home and give you prices to repair or replace your unit. We will even waive the service fee for coming to your home.

 

Can I fix my water heater myself?

That would be inadvisable. Water heaters are known for emitting poisonous gases. What’s worse, those toxic gases are usually odorless, so you won’t know you’re in danger.

 

How do you charge?

It might be good to ask your plumber if they charge by the hour or by the project.

At Met Plumbing, we offer up-front pricing to all of our customers, so you know what you’re getting before you commit to a job. Think about like this: Would you go to a restaurant and order a meal without knowing exactly what you were getting and the price you were going to pay? Hiring a plumber that charges by the hour is like a customer that sat down to order a meal and asked the waiter to bring them the special without knowing what’s in it or how much it will cost after you have finished eating the meal: you will always be left with hidden and surprise fees and charges by the time they are finished with the job and you will be stuck with the bill because you committed to the work. Here at MET Plumbing, we offer up-front pricing to all of our customers – so you know what you’re getting before you commit to a job.

 

What do you charge?

Now that you’ve worked out the type of payment, it’s time to focus on actual numbers. What is the hourly rate? Does your plumber charge for overtime? How much do they charge for each type of project? What if the project ends up being more involved than they first anticipated? What if something goes wrong along the way? Will they charge you more?

As you can see, there is a lot more to figuring out the dollar amount than simply asking about rates. It’s best to sit down with your licensed plumber and discuss these details beforehand so you don’t get hit with sticker shock when the time comes to fork over the money (also why up-front pricing for the project and not by the hour is the recommended choice).

 

Do you guarantee your work against malfunctions?

Breakage, leaks, failure—they happen. The question is whether your plumber will guarantee the work or whether they will invoice you for a brand new project. While you’re at it, ask them about the time frame. What if a pipe fails six months from now as opposed to six days from now?

Other companies will warranty their work 3-6months after repairs have been made. Here at MET Plumbing, we have a standard base warranty of 2 years on parts and labor for everything we supply, install or repair. Depending on the work to be done, warranty options can extend all the way to 12  years.

 

What is that loud, frightening clunking noise I hear when I turn my faucet on and off?

a loose washer is most likely the culprit. You can often hear it clunking around in there when the water runs through the pipes. If you decide to fix it yourself, make certain you grab the washer before it falls down the drain.

 

What if my garbage disposal smells like something that just crawled out of a swamp?

First of all, don’t panic. The bad odors come from food particles that have gotten stuck in your drain. Some deep cleaning can resolve the issue. Here’s one way to really clean that sink:

Plug the drain and then fill the sink about halfway up with water. Pour in some vinegar or dish soap. Finally, unplug the drain and turn on the garbage disposal. That will drive the liquid through the drain at a faster speed than normal, allowing it to clean out those hard-to-reach places.

Another common remedy is to throw a number of ice cubes down the drain and then turn on the disposal. After running cold water through it, squeeze a lemon over the drain, and then throw the whole thing in and grind it up. That will help with the foul odor.

If you’ve cleaned your disposal every which way, and it still smells like something died in your kitchen, pick up your phone and call MET Plumbing.

 

Can I see references to verify the quality of your work?

Ideally, you’ll select a plumber based on references from friends or family, but this isn’t an ideal world. Chances are you found your plumbing company online. That’s a-okay, but if you’re unsure about the quality of their work, simply ask them or research their reviews online. Can I see references to verify the quality of your work

At Met Plumbing, we’re proud of our customers’ satisfaction. Over the years, we’ve built up a loyal clientele. That’s because we care more about quality and long-term relationships than about making a quick buck.

“Not only were they most polite, courteous, and diligent, they did excellent work. They were very professional, very neat and did not waste time!” ~Lakshmi N.

You can read more great reviews about our service at Review Buzz.

 

 

Can I use a coat hanger to unclog my drains?

That would be a bad idea. It will most likely not clear up your drainage problems, and there’s a good chance it will make them worse. You might even damage your pipes while you’re at it. The only thing worse than a clogged drain is a clogged and damaged drain with a coat hanger sticking out of it.

 

What services do you offer?

It’s good to know upfront what types of services your plumbing company does or does not offer. At Met Plumbing we offer water heater installation and repair, toilet repair, leak repair – for both water and gas, bathroom plumbing repair, drain cleaning, and kitchen plumbing services.

 

Why is my water pressure so darn low?

Low water pressure can be caused by a number of problems, from mineral buildup to shutoff valve defects. First, check your water lines and shutoff valves to ensure there are no tie-ups. If your pipes are old—say you haven’t bothered with them since you bought the house thirty years ago—you might consider replacing them with brand spanking new ones.

 

Is your company insured?

In a happy world, accidents never happen. Sadly, this is not such a happy world. Ask your plumbing company if they’re insured against the possibility of something going terribly, terribly wrong (not that it ever will).

 

Are you accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB)?

Met Plumbing is not only accredited by the BBB; we also received a shiny service award and an A+ rating!

The Benefits of Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters operate differently from traditional tank heaters. Rather than storing a set amount of water and keeping it heated to a preset temperature, tankless heaters create hot water “on demand,” as it is required by the home. As such, these types of water heaters are more energy efficient.

Most tankless heaters include a federal tax rebate of up to $300. In addition to this rebate, other savings you experience are a reduction in energy bills by as much as 20%. Further, tankless heaters last between five and ten years longer than traditional water heaters.

Water Heater Repair

Depending upon the model, tankless water heater installation is not complicated when you have a professional do the work. Existing plumbing lines can be used if you are installing the heater in the same location as your existing one, or new lines can be run if needed.

Another benefit of tankless heaters is they take up significantly less space. This provides flexibility in where they can be installed within the home, such as on walls, under sink cabinets, and so on. All that is required is access to water lines and an electrical connection. Gas models do need to be vented and need access to the natural gas line.

For more information about tankless water heaters for your home, contact Met Plumbing today by calling 281-599-3336. You’ll be glad we Met!