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By Andrey Popov at Shutterstock

A single leak in your plumbing system can lead to between 2,000 and 20,000 gallons of wasted water each year. That’s not a small amount! Besides the expense, a plumbing leak often leads to severe structural damage, mold infestations, and much frustration. You may never hear the sound of constantly dripping water from a hidden leak, or realize that mold may be growing there. It’s terrifying to even consider this annoyance, though you do need to track down the source of the plumbing leak and repair the problem quickly. But how?

Indoor Plumbing Leaks

You’ll find that it’s more common for an indoor leak to occur than an outdoor leak. Despite the weather and outside influences, an external leak, while troublesome, is actually less likely. You see, indoors, you have several plumbing systems combined together. There are many pipes running through your floors, walls, and ceilings. And yes, toilets still remain the most common cause of leaks in residential homes.

The easiest way to spot an indoor plumbing leak is to examine your fixtures and appliances, because these are the likely culprits. On occasion, examine the following: your shower or tub, the bathroom sink, the kitchen (with the sink and its appliances), and the basement if you have one. Of course, examine the floors around each fixture. See any loose tiles or noticeable stains? That’s an immediate sign of a plumbing leak that’s hidden away.

Faucets are notorious for leaking, and typically, such leaks are obvious. A leaking faucet will have a constant drip when off, or when turned on, you’ll see water accumulating around the fixture itself. Thankfully, faucets are a relatively simple fix. You just need to replace the O-ring, or find a replacement part for the leaking joint or pipe. You may even be able to complete such repairs yourself, without the help of a professional plumber. However, to avoid worsening leaks or costly repairs in the future, we always recommend scheduling professional plumbing services. It’s a smart move that pays off.

Outdoor Leaks

When you think of your home, you likely include everything indoors. What about the backyard, though? How about the swimming pool? Those too are part of your Lake Worth home. You need to be vigilant in checking for leaks in outdoor areas as well.

An outdoor leak is troublesome to detect. Typically, a leak in the swimming pool is downright impossible to track. Why? Because there’s a lot of water already mixed in there! A swimming pool specialist can help you here.

Of course, your swimming pool and backyard kitchen are only two points of concern. What about the main sewer or water line buried under the backyard? Both are capable of experiencing leaks and cracks over time, and both are costly and troublesome to repair. You’ll notice telltale signs of a sewer line leak, including wet patches in the lawn, sewage backups, horrible odors, and a rising water bill each month. Does this describe your experience? Then it’s time to schedule with an expert to handle these leaks promptly.

Contact General Plumbing for professional leak detection and repair services in Lake Worth, FL. Give us a call anytime for service at 561-420-0442.

The post How to Detect a Leak in Your Lake Worth Home appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By JRJfin at Shutterstock

Your home’s sewer line is a great invention – but also a source of frustration and headache. When something goes wrong, the city refuses to handle the situation, despite their direct connection to the line. It’s up to you, the property owner, to handle the mess. And what a mess a sewer line can make! The backup, leaks, and cost of repairs can be overwhelming. Thankfully, the plumbing industry has come a long way. We no longer need to tear up your landscape with a backhoe. Instead, a more precise, comprehensive approach is available – one without the mess and cost. First, we need to find the source of the problem, and a modern sewer camera inspection can certainly take care of that!

What Is a Sewer Camera Inspection?

First, you need to understand what a sewer camera inspection is and what it accomplishes. This is a specialized plumbing service that can only be performed by a professional plumbing technician. Typically, a sewer line is buried underground and it will be dirty. It’s near-impossible for a plumbing expert to visually inspect the system and come away with a full idea of the situation. To avoid health issues and mishaps, a sewer line camera is inserted directly into the main sewer line. From there, it is fed on down through the line, and the camera relays imagery back to the above-ground computer.

Thanks to such imagery, your expert plumbing technician can assess the situation much more accurately. We’ll locate cracks, holes, blockages, and tree root intrusions with ease.

Sewer Camera Inspection Cost

The cost for sewer camera inspection services varies according on the situation. Homeowners can expect to pay between $100 and $800, depending on the nature of the job. Of course, any professional plumber worth their salt will provide a comprehensive quote for all plumbing services before any work begins.

The total cost will factor in the length of the sewer line, local rates, per hour or fixed contract pricing, and whether an inspection took place or not.

When to Schedule Sewer Camera Inspections

While we always recommend occasional plumbing maintenance for peak performance, a sewer camera inspection is a more specialized procedure. Typically, you would schedule a sewer camera inspection if you have trouble with drain line backups, slow drainage, or recurring clogs in the plumbing system. Additionally, if you’re buying a new home, you may want to schedule a camera inspection just to be safe. Before signing on the dotted line, you’ll want to know whether the home’s plumbing system is working efficiently – or otherwise. It would be terrible to wake up one morning to discover horrendous plumbing issues with the sewer line! Such problems could be easily avoidable with a pre-purchase sewer camera inspection.

General Plumbing is the leading provider of sewer camera inspection in Lake Worth, FL. If you suspect any trouble with your home’s main sewer line, give us a call. We’ll send an experienced plumbing technician straight to your doorstep to begin the inspection. Call us anytime at 561-585-2591.

The post What Is a Sewer Camera Inspection? appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By Mile Atanasov of Shutterstock

The desire for tankless water heaters is on the rise. Many homeowners, much like yourself, are considering their options when it comes to water heating solutions in the home. It wasn’t long ago that a conventional tank model water heater was the only option. Yet today, we’re almost spoiled for choices! Is a tankless water heater the right option for you, though? It solely depends on your preferences, household needs, and budget. You see, a tankless water heater involves a larger upfront investment – but the monthly savings tend to win many people over.

Tankless Water Heater vs. Conventional Water Heater

The common conventional water heater is still a top choice for many property owners. It’s a cost-effective solution, albeit somewhat outdated. Let’s break down both choices to discover which comes out on top.

We’ll begin with a conventional water heater, which stores and preheats 30–50 gallons of water in a single tank. The preheated water is distributed throughout the house when anyone uses hot water. For example, let’s say you’re doing the dishes, the laundry, and someone is showering. All these tasks require hot water, and the water heater will bring it – then the tank’s supply will run out and you’re left with cold water. The water heater continues to heat the water in the tank, but since all the stored hot water is gone, it takes time. If you have a busy household, then chances are you’ve run out of hot water more than once in the past month.

Now, let’s look at today’s tankless water heater models. These systems utilize either electric power or gas as a heat source to warm water on-demand. And there is no storage tank! That may throw you, but here’s how it works. Let’s say you’ve turned on the hot water in the kitchen – the tankless water heater also activates right then. It runs cool water through its body, using heating coils to raise the temperature of the water to your requested level. However, if the system is not sized properly, you can still run out of hot water elsewhere in the house.

Advantages of Tankless Water Heaters
  • Money – According to Energy.gov, any home using 41 gallons or less of hot water per day can enjoy 24–34% more energy efficiency with a tankless water heater model. This translates into monthly savings.
  • Space – A tankless model can be installed in more places than a conventional model, as there is no bulky tank to take up room. You can even install a tankless unit on the wall.
  • Lifespan – The overall lifespan of a tankless water heater is nearly double that of a conventional water heater. For example, most tankless models today will last 20+ years.
Disadvantages of Tankless Water Heaters

Now, let’s be objective and take a look at a few of the disadvantages of these innovative water heaters.

  • Initial Cost – Compared to a conventional water heater, a tankless water heater has a higher upfront cost. Most models, when professionally installed, are a few thousand dollars.
  • Retrofitting – Your home may require retrofitting to pair with a tankless water heater. This is a complicated process that adds more to the installation cost.

Are you interested in going tankless? Now’s the time to schedule tankless water heater services in Lake Worth, FL. Contact General Plumbing by calling 561-585-2591.

The post Are Tankless Water Heaters Really Better? appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By mikeledray at Shutterstock

There are positively zero homeowners who enjoy the prospect of sewer line repairs. You see, the city will not cover the cost, nor will they schedule with a utility company to handle the task. Despite the obvious connection, you’re left to your own devices. You, as the homeowner, are responsible for the full amount, and unfortunately, it can get costly. At least, it could. Today’s improved techniques and equipment thankfully make sewer line repair a situation that’s much easier to handle. So how will you know to schedule sewer line repair? Let’s delve into this topic now.

Common Signs of Sewer Line Trouble

It’s often difficult to assess when your sewer line is having an issue. There are common symptoms, sounds, and even smells that indicate a larger, more severe problem, but despite these obvious signs, you still need to know what to watch for! Some common signs of sewer line trouble include:

  • Sewage Backup or Blockages – Sewage backups occur on occasion. When the sewage backs up each time you flush your toilet, the problem lies within the main sewer line. Your home’s drains rely on the line to drain efficiently. If there’s a blockage in multiple drains in your home, then it’s the fault of the sewer line.
  • Foul Odors – We said you may notice smells as one symptom, and that’s true, as a working sewer line is air-tight. There should be zero smells or blockages. If a foul odor begins to seep into your home through the drain system – usually the smell of rotten eggs and sewage – then a leak in the sewer line is the likely culprit.
  • Slow Drainage – Slow drainage can be caused by any number of common plumbing issues. However, if you have slow drainage in multiple drains across the house, then a blockage or leak is likely in the main sewer line. The main line clog is typically larger and more complex than your average drainage blockage. In this case, the usual unclogging methods will not suffice. You need an expert with advanced tools and techniques to handle the issue.
  • Foundation Cracks – A leaking or damaged main sewer line, if not handled promptly, can lead to long-term, severe issues with your home’s foundation. If left untreated, the broken sewer line will cause foundation cracks, sinkholes, or a settling foundation. These symptoms will lead to structural integrity issues over time, and that’s both dangerous and costly.
  • Pests – It’s gross to even consider, but a genuine concern. If your sewer line has a crack or hole, small critters, such as rats and insects, can squeeze through. They then follow the pipe back into your home. These pests are obviously harmful to your health and may be destructive as well.

As you can see, there are numerous downsides to a busted sewer line! The moment you notice any of the above signs, you’ll want to schedule professional sewer line repair.

Contact General Plumbing today for sewer line repair services in Lake Worth, FL. Give us a call at 561-585-2591. We are the leading provider of sewer line repair, maintenance, and installation in our region – always feel welcome to reach out to us!

The post How to Know If My Home Needs a Sewer Line Repair? appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By SOORACHET KHEAWHOM for Shutterstock

Many homeowners use gas to do things like cook food or heat their house. This might seem like a safe, normal part of daily living, but during a gas leak, the health of your family can be compromised.

If you have gas appliances in your home, keep these five important thoughts in mind.

1. It’s up to you to prevent gas leaks.

A large majority of gas emergencies are avoidable, if you know what preventative measures to take. Start by checking your appliances for signs of wear and tear. Keep a working carbon monoxide alarm in your house and change the batteries regularly, then watch for signs of gas leaks like excess condensation on windows or scorched appliances. During a leak, you’ll also probably notice a sulfur-like odor.

2. It’s not a good sign if your boiler pilot light keeps blowing out.

This is often one of the first signs people notice when there’s a gas leak in the home. You may also notice the pilot light on your unit appears orange or yellow instead of blue.

3. Where is your gas supply shut-off valve?

When a gas leak occurs, the first thing you need to do is shut off the supply. However, you can’t do that quickly if you have to search for the shut off valve, so locate it in advance.

4. Gas in the air can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning and fires.

When inhaled by residents, gas inside your home can cause many health problems, including headaches and nausea. High levels of exposure can even lead to loss of consciousness or death by suffocation. Therefore, you should always take the possibility of gas leaks seriously.

5. Regular maintenance for your gas appliances is essential.

Although checking for signs of damage on your gas appliances is a good place to start, you should also have a certified plumbing expert take a look at your appliances every once in a while. They can check for warning signs or even gas leaks you might not have noticed.

Contact General Plumbing

If you think you smell gas or suspect there’s a leak somewhere in your house, don’t hesitate to contact our experts at General Plumbing today. We’ll inspect the area for signs of gas and even check underground for leaks. We take gas safety seriously, and so should you. Give us a call today at (561) 420-0442.

The post 5 Things to Keep in Mind When You Have Gas Appliances at Home appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By Dagmara_K for Shutterstock

When your home’s fresh water supply becomes tainted by contaminated water that’s traveling in the wrong direction, your toilets, sinks, dishwashers, swimming pools, and showers might end up using dirty water. This problem is commonly referred to as “backflow” and can be experienced in any residence when things go wrong.

Since no homeowner wants to deal with contaminated water, here are some steps you can take to prevent backflow from causing problems in your home.

Determine Where Backflow Is Likely to Occur

Some parts of your property are at a higher risk of backflow problems than others. Locations with cross-connections heighten the concern, so you may need to reinforce those connections and keep an eye on the specific area when conducting plumbing inspections.

Protect Your Pipes and Appliances

One of the best ways to keep your water supply safe is to make sure that all of your pipes and appliances are protected. Accurately caring for these parts of your plumbing system can decrease the risk of low water pressure and therefore help prevent backflow.

Install a Backflow Prevention Device

A backflow preventer works to keep contaminated water from entering the water supply. Depending on the kind of device you select, it may help keep pressures at normal levels or make sure that all the water flows in one direction. Do some research to see which backflow prevention system suits your needs the best, then have a professional plumbing service handle the installation.

Have Your Plumbing System Checked Regularly

By scheduling maintenance sessions and regular checkups, you’ll minimize the risk of backflow problems. A plumbing company can spot issues with cross-connections, backflow preventer valves, water supply, and other parts of the system that can eventually lead to serious concerns.

Need to schedule a plumbing system inspection to help prevent backflow in your home? Contact General Plumbing today at 561-420-0442 to speak with a trained plumbing expert or to schedule an appointment in Lake Worth, West Palm Beach and the surrounding areas. We can help with everything from backflow testing to clogged pipes and toilets, so don’t hesitate to let us handle your biggest plumbing issues.

The post How to Prevent Backflow in Your Palm Beach Home appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By KariDesign on Shutterstock

Nothing is built to last forever, even when it comes to the plumbing system that keeps your whole household running. If it’s been years since you built the house or last installed a new system, then yours is probably already outdated.

To know for sure, pay attention to your system and report the following signs to a nearby plumbing company immediately. These are usually symptoms of a system that’s on its last leg, and you don’t want to wait until the end to deal with repairs and replacements.

1. Low Water Pressure

Remember when you used to be able to take a long, hot shower without experiencing drops in water pressure? Inconsistent or low pressure is almost always indicative of underlying problems with your plumbing. Maybe your pipes are leaky or clogged, or perhaps it’s time for your plumbing system to get an upgrade. Either way, a plumbing snake, camera inspection or other tools can help you see what’s going on.

2. Water Discoloration

Brown or dark-colored water coming out of your sink is never a good thing. Usually, it’s a sign that there are mineral deposits lodged in your pipes, which may mean that your pipes need to be replaced. Give a shout to Google to “find a plumbing company near me” and get on that issue pronto or you’ll face serious consequences later on down the road.

3. Iron or Lead Pipes

These pipes are relics of the old days. In modern plumbing, brass, copper, and PVC are used to make safer, more efficient pipes. These new pipes will last longer than any iron or lead ones, so go ahead and make the switch. Consider it an investment in the future of your home.

If you live in the Lake Worth or Palm Beach area, don’t hesitate to contact the plumbing supply experts at General Plumbing as soon as your plumbing system shows its old age. Our trained team members can offer advice, installation services, and so much more.

To schedule an initial plumbing system inspection or to speak with a General Plumbing staff member, give us a call today at (561) 420-0442.

The post 3 Signs You Need a New Plumbing System appeared first on General Plumbing.

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By Sebra for Shutterstock

We all like to think that our drinking water is safe, but sadly, that’s not always the case. Without the help of a proper water filtration system, bacteria, dirt, chemicals and other pollutants can sneak their way into your drinking water sources, leaving your family at risk. Even in the areas around Lake Worth, water in the past has tested positive for a handful of worrisome contaminants, including:

Coli Bacteria

In July of 2016, some of the water that was sampled from one raw water well in Lake Worth tested positive for fecal coliform bacteria, including the more commonly-known bacteria

called E. coli. Not only is this bacteria dangerous to healthy people, but it’s especially threatening to people with weak immune systems, as well as infants and children.

Typically, the presence of fecal coliform and E. coli indicate that the water has been contaminated by human or animal waste. This makes the water dangerous for drinking, which means that water will need to be cleared of infectious diseases before people can safely use their water again.

Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs)

A recent look into Florida’s water facilities found that 32 contained amounts of Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs) that were above the legal limits. TTHMs refer to four chief constituents: chloroform, bromoform, bromodichloromethane, and dibromochloromethane. In serious situations, these contaminants have been found to negatively impact people’s health by increasing the risk of cancer and causing reproductive issues.

Haloacetic Acids (HAA5)

Another delve into Florida’s water system found that 15 different utility sites contained Haloacetic acid levels that were above legal limits. HAA5 can form when water is treated with a temperature that is too high. Large amounts of exposure to these acids have been shown to negatively impact the liver, eyes, kidney, reproductive system, and nervous system.

Chlorate

In the past, the Palm Beach Water Utilities Department has reported chlorate above the state average. Drinking water usually becomes contaminated with chlorate when it has been disinfected with sodium hypochlorite or chlorine dioxide. Although this is not a particularly dangerous contaminant, it can pose serious risks to young infants.

What Can You Do to Eliminate These Contaminants?

Usually, the filtration systems in Palm Beach County and Lake Worth are going to catch most of the nasty contaminants in your water. The question is, do you really want to take the chance that some will be missed?

At General Plumbing, we strongly encourage you to install a water purification system that will ensure every source of water in your house is safe and clean. Our decades of experience in the area have taught us everything we need to know about keeping your drinking water free of pollutants, so with our expertise and professional filtration systems, your family’s safety will be in good hands.

Contact Us

Schedule a water filtration system installation today in Lake Worth, Florida, and the surrounding communities by calling General Plumbing at 561-420-0442.

The post Contaminants You Didn’t Know Are Found in Lake Worth Water appeared first on General Plumbing.

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Every time you turn on your shower or pour yourself a glass of water, you want to know that you’re using clean, healthy water. Not only does it taste, smell and feel better, but it’s much safer for your health.

If you’re using low-quality water in your home, or if it has been contaminated by some sort of pollution, the health of your family could be at risk. Here are five of the most common health hazards posed by dirty water:

  1. Diseases. Water-borne diseases are no laughing matter. In fact, you’ve probably heard about the worst ones, such as typhoid, cholera, dysentery, and jaundice. Don’t expose yourself to these diseases through contaminated water, inside or outside of your home.
  2. Harmful chemicals. Polluted water often contains materials like lead, arsenic, pesticides, and nitrates. These can be dangerous to the human body when consumed. For instance, chemicals like lead and arsenic can cause skin cancer, liver damage, and vascular diseases.
  3. Problems with digestion. When your body consumes contaminated water, it will react in negative ways. You may develop a stomach ache or feel nauseous, and those are just the first signs that you’ve ingested polluted water.

What’s the best way to make sure your water quality stays within the healthy range? Look into top-quality water filtration services. After it has been installed, a water filtration device can remove odors, foul tastes, dangerous materials, and even diseases that may be present in your water.

General Plumbing can come to your Lake Worth residence and install a home water filtration system that keeps every source of water clean and safe. You’ll find that your water starts to taste, smell, and even feel better after you’ve removed the dangers from it. To learn more about home water filtration systems, water quality, or other concerns, give General Plumbing a call today at 561-585-2591.

The post How Water Quality Can Affect Your Health appeared first on General Plumbing.

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With so many technological advancements in the plumbing field, sometimes it can be difficult to determine what type of product best suits your needs. For instance, when deciding between two types of water heaters, do you go with the more traditional kind, or do you install something new and snazzy?

Well, that depends on several things. Tankless water heaters, the more modern kind of heater, have some serious advantages. However, they can also be expensive to install and replace.

Conventional water heaters might not be as small or “fancy” as their tankless competitors, but they do have some other huge advantages:

  • Conventional water heaters are more affordable to put in your home. Installing a traditional heater can cost up to 50 percent less than installing a tankless water heater. This fact is appealing to many families who need a new water heater immediately.
  • Replacing them is no big deal. If your traditional water heater fails, you can replace it with very few complications and a pretty small fee. Tankless heaters, on the other hand, can cost quite a bit to retrofit.
  • Conventional water heaters don’t need to run on electricity. When the power goes out in a home that uses a tankless water heater, there’s no hot water until the electricity comes back on. In comparison, a gas-powered conventional water heater can work as long as it has access to gas.

Need help deciding between conventional or tankless water heaters? Get in contact with General Plumbing. Their team of certified plumbing experts can guide you towards the water heater that’s the best fit for your wallet and your home. With more than 65 years of experience, they can help you get your plumbing system where it needs to be.

To schedule a repair, inspection, or installation, reach out to General Plumbing at 561-585-2591.

The post Pros of Buying a Conventional Water Heater appeared first on General Plumbing.

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