Friday, 15 June 2012

Drain Problems? Ask For Drain Video Inspection

Since very first days Absolute Draining and Plumbing has been utilizing modern methods and diagnostic tools to fix main drain and sewer line problems. Drain video inspection started to be a norm for the instances when underground pipe restoration was needed.
In order to carry out a standard video pipe inspection Toronto plumbers work with a special waterproof CCTV (closed circuit television) camera and locator.  Any present day camera consists of a camera head attached to TV monitor by a long spool of rigid Kevlar cable. This drain camera is crafted specifically to be able to slide through drain pipes, resisting the severe drain environment to provide a quality image, even inside pipes flooded with waste water. To locate a problem, your Toronto plumber will use an access point to insert the camera into main drain or sewer line, typically via a sewer cleanout, by unreeling the cable as the camera travels further down or up the pipe. While the camera passes thorough drain, the plumber will use the monitor to see and show you what happens inside your pipes.
A camera inspection can accurately identify all kind of drain problems, including:
  • Roots infiltration
  • Blockages and solid buildup
  • Broken/collapsed pipes
  • Sags and pipe shifts
  • Cross boring done by utility companies
Correctly diagnosed problem is the first step to fix it.  As soon as the plumber has uncovered what is wrong with the pipe, he will be able to offer one or more solution to the issue. In many instances it does not mean digging up your yard or tearing up your floor. In many cases of light root intrusion, blockages, or buildup a drain snaking or drain flushing technique will help to get rid of the problem.
But correctly located problem using help of drain camera doesn’t necessary mean that the issue can be fixed without the need of excavation. The good example would be the case when a sewer drain pipe has collapsed and the damaged section of drain system must be replaced. A sewer line camera along with a locator can pinpoint the place of excavation and your Toronto plumber can dig up the exact spot, rather than trenching the entire line to find the issue. Here drain camera helps to reduce costs of the drain repair and minimizes the damage to your landscaping.
You may also need a drain camera inspection in cases you planning to add a washroom in the basement or to put an addition to your house. In this situation Toronto plumbing contractor will be able to trace the drain lines and to determine their depth. This information is vital for proper layout of new drain lines. In some cases the depth of the existing drain line does not allow to lay new underground drain and the plumber will be forced to install a sewer pump.
Therefore if the next time you have got a drain problem or you need help in putting new drain lines,  ask your plumber if a video pipe inspection might be right thing to do. In many instances having drain inspection done before fixing old drain or installing new one will help to carry out the job quicker, easier and with less damage to your property.

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Epoxy Drain Liner: Truth and Myths

Even cured-in-place-pipe (CIPP) lining of drain systems has taken over the globe industry for over 35 years, they are still relatively new to some Canadians. Several improvements have already been made within the field recently. General Manager of Absolute Draining and Plumbing Andrew Mokrivsky analyzes some of the advancements, as well as demystifies some of the myths.

Cured-in-place-pipe (CIPP) lining is the typical name given to the insertion of a resin soaked liner (tube) right into a ruined pipe and curing it in place to create a new structural pipe inside a pipe.

The installation procedure may be accomplished by using different procedures which includes pull-in or inversion using air or water pressure. The curing of the resin can be carried out applying steam, hot water, UV light but there are some resins that may cure under ambient conditions.

Liner construction has also become unbelievably advanced with a variety of materials out there, from standard polyester tubes to fibreglass reinforced tubes.

Lining resins have progressed significantly in the past 35 years with products being specifically created and verified for the pipe rehabilitation market. Then again, it is critical that the tube/resin combination be thoroughly tested. This is exactly why Absolute Draining and Plumbing developed proprietary trenchless drain repair technique and produces its own liners.

Despite the above progress, a variety of myths stay alive in the business regarding to CIPP liners.

Myth 1: All liners are identical

while there are several conceptual similarities in between systems, it is clear through the information above that a many options are present to accommodate various site conditions and problems. Just about every liner has its own specific installation process and finished properties.

Myth 2: Liners are not to be put in where there is infiltration

“Lining manufactured by Absolute Draining and Plumbing is quite strong when it comes to installation under infiltration circumstances," said Andrew Mokrivsky, "Over the last 10 years, we have not only worked on the improvement of our products and systems, but also we have developed reliable method to allow us to install all of our liners under complicated circumstances. Our capabilities are well proven on projects in the Toronto and GTA. Once installed, liners have been proven to be the most efficient choice that modern plumbing industry can offer in relation to reducing or eliminating further infiltration into the lined pipe because of the tight fit nature of the finished product and the migration of resin into pipe defects.

Myth 3: Liners cannot be installed in broken pipes

CIPP liners are remarkably versatile for any rehabilitation of defective pipes because they are placed in a flexible state just before curing. Which means the liners can work out substantial issues, for example holes or missing sections, and are notably favourable when addressing large joint displacements or pipe bends/deflections, which can be common where ground movement has occurred. After the liner is inflated/pressurized positioned, it's the added good thing about supporting the pipe during curing to limit the risk of further pipe collapse.

Final thoughts

To summarize, CIPP liners have come a considerable ways since their invention roughly 40 years ago and remain most likely the most widely used and tested pipe rehabilitation product.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Low Water Pressure in Your House

If you are an owner of old house then low water pressure can be a term frequently referred to what really is a low flow problem, when at least one fixture in a dwelling does not supply sufficient flow of water. There exists a correlation between pressure and water flow, however it is quite easy to maintain decent water pressure but nevertheless to get low flow from one or more plumbing fixtures. In this article the term “Low Water Pressure” will be used for combination of both low water flow and pressure since they both produce the identical result: the fixture does not get enough water.

Scenario 1. Single Fixture Has Low Water Pressure

In case when the low pressure problem affects one or just a few plumbing fixtures throughout the house, we would suggest reading Low Water Pressure in Faucets article.

Scenario 2. Whole House Low Water Pressure

If all plumbing in the house has low water pressure, the reason may be quite different including: a partially closed main shutoff valve, corroded piping, broke pressure relief valve (PRV) or low water flow from City side.

Partially Closed Valves

Simplest solution always goes first. We recommend verifying the fact that the main shut-off valve on the water supply line coming to the house is completely open. Your shut-off valve can be only one of the two basic types: full port ball valve or gate valve.

The ball valve most of the time has a lever. If the handle is “in-line” with the pipe water can flow freely. Turning the lever 90 degrees shuts off the water completely. If the handle stays somewhere in between on and off positions then water flow is reduced.

Gate valves use rotary handles to change the position of the “gate” inside. In order to close the gate you have to turn the valve handle to the right/clockwise. By turning the valve handle to the left/counter-clockwise you will open the gate entirely. If the valve is old and does not turn we suggest getting help from professional plumber.

In the case if all fixtures suffer with inadequate hot water supply we advise to check the shut-off valve fight before cold water inlet on the water heater;

Testing Water Pressure

Most municipalities carry out flow test for free. We advise to contact your local water work division and book the test. In Toronto it could be done simply by dialing 311.

Clogged Piping

Quite often it happens to older water supply lines. Caused by years of corrosion and mineral buildup the internal diameter of the water supply line shrinks and it significantly restricts water flow.
Regrettably, it is not much which can be done to rectify this problem. The old pipe needs to be replaced. The good news is that we as Licensed Toronto Plumber can help you to replace old water supply piping.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Read this if you have noisy faucet

There are many possible factors why faucets can chatter, whistle, or scream. If the house is recently constructed, possibly you have water pipes which are too small to permit water to pass through normally. Similarly, in older homes water that flows through pipes may be limited by presence of solid deposit build-up. In either case, you must change the water lines to get rid of the noise, which is not really a cheap fix. For free quotation call plumber in Toronto. Before you begin any tap repair job remember to turn off the water.

Most likely, on the other hand, noise is caused by washer that's either the wrong size or is not held safely on the shank. Replacing the washer or securing it should eliminate the noise. If your tap still makes noise, examine the washer seat. The seat may become somewhat blocked with deposits, and the restricted water flow might cause whistling or chattering. If this sounds like the case, thoroughly clean the seat.

A squealing noise heard while you turn the tap handle, it means that the metal threads of the stem are rubbing against the faucet threads. Take off the stem, and coat each thread with vasoline. The lubrication should eliminate the noise making the handle much easier to turn. Of course, in case the shank threads or faucet body threads have become worn, the gap between them leads to rumbling and noise from the faucet. In such a case, you will need more than just lubrication.
Buy a new stem, and see if the noise goes away. If not, the faucet body threads are worn out, and the only option would be an entirely new faucet. Luckily, the stem typically wears first. But in case you need to replace the entire faucet, the task is fairly straightforward.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Copper Plumbing Versus PEX Piping

Here is the story I have read online from one of the local newspaper while I was screening Google News.
The police in Hartford stated an investigation of a theft.  Approximately 30 feet of copper piping had been stolen in the middle of a night from the basement of the apartment building. Someone broke through a ground-level window and cut away the pipes, which were part of active plumbing system.
This recent incident as many similar ones proves that the price of raw copper is sky high. Therefore in a continuous debate “copper piping”  vs. “PEX piping” the last one gained another point. The PEX piping dominates in new construction and rapidly pushes out copper piping from retrofit projects. And it is logical, more and more homeowners understand that the PEX project will not only allow spend less money and time but also has other benefits. For instance,  PEX pipes are resistant to freeze damage -  under most circumstances, water in the pipe can be frozen and thawed without damaging the pipe. Another key benefit is water conservation – well designed PEX plumbing systems can reduce the wait time for hot water to reach the fixture.
So, as a conclusion to the topic: when time comes to call plumber for upgrading your plumbing or add anew washroom please consider PEX plumbing as a better choice.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

When To Choose Your Plumber

In the previous article I have brought to your attention a few scary stories that happened in real life. After you read them, please ask yourself a question – Was it possible to avoid?
In the third case when water was dripping on the countertop, the answer is definitely “yes”. The owner of the house should address the issue as soon as drips from the faucet were discovered. If your plumbing problem is not addressed in a timely fashion, you are increasing possibility for the appearance of mold, rot, and bursting pipes, none of which is particularly pleasant to deal with.
So my advice to you –do not be reactive, be proactive. You should have the name of the plumbing company and the phone number to call before something bad happened to the plumbing system in your house. Many of homeowners do not use a plumber so often and do not know how to distinguish one company from another. A good place to start your search is with family, friends, and colleagues at work. Someone you know is likely to have used a plumber in the area. Asking for referrals from people you know is a good way to find a plumber or learn of someone to stay away from. As an alternative I would recommend to use Internet and read all plumbers’ reviews on your community forum or on the Better Business Bureau website.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Something Scarry About Plumbing

The very first thing I would like to bring to your attention is one of variation of Murphy’s Law - “If sh.t (something bad) can happen, it will happen”. And this is absolutely true. I am pretty sure that everyone at least once has heard a story similar to these:
Really bad and very costly – It was a severe winter at the end of February, almost -20C outside, and we decided to spend two week vacation in Mexico. When we returned we found massive damage to our lovely house caused by burst pipes.   
Also bad and expensive – It happened during my birthday party. I had almost twenty guests in my house. Lots of food, soft drinks for kids and alcohol for their parents… And then this awfully smelling backup occurred in the basement. The party was ruined. The plumber who came the same night explained that the drain was almost completely blocked by tree roots and extensive use of toilets in my house by guests clogged up the drain completely.
Less expensive and could be avoided if addressed timely – The hot water tap was dripping really slowly on the kitchen countertop but it did not bother the homeowner. In four months the whole faucet started wobbling and the plumber diagnosed that the chipboard under countertop plastic was gone and there was no possible way to fasten the faucet.  
In cases like the above there is no way around it and most people need a plumber.
How to choose the plumber, please read in our next post.