Thanksgiving Plumbing Protection Tips

Don’t Let a Plumbing Emergency Ruin Thanksgiving! 

Thanksgiving is the perfect time of year to give thanks to local plumbers for protecting their communities from plumbing disasters. Many people gather during the Thanksgiving holiday to celebrate with their families. It is traditional to enjoy a large Thanksgiving meal during the holiday of giving thanks. 

During Thanksgiving, more pressure may be put on the home’s kitchen and bathroom plumbing than usual. Hosting multiple guests at home or preparing a large meal can increase strain on the plumbing system. Homeowners can use the tips in this blog post to help prepare their home plumbing for common Thanksgiving plumbing disasters such as a clogged drain or toilet. 

Prevent Clogged Toilets

toiletA clogged toilet on Thanksgiving is a recipe for disaster. Guests may rush out the door when they find out there is no working toilet. Homeowners can get their homes ready to host guests and enjoy a Thanksgiving meal together by taking steps to prevent a clogged toilet. 

It is important not to flush anything down the toilet other than toilet paper. People are often tempted to use the toilet as a second trash can to dispose of small waste products. Even if the toilet does not clog the first time, the items can build up in the sewer line and cause clogs. Products labeled as flushable, such as flushable wipes, should also be avoided. Despite the product marketing, plumbers do not recommend putting these products down a toilet because they are more absorbent and don’t break down as well as toilet paper. 

Children in the home may be the culprits for why homeowners need to unclog the toilet this Thanksgiving. Parents should remind their children of flushing best practices, such as only using the amount of toilet paper needed and not flushing any other items. Flushing as you go instead of all at once at the end can also help to prevent toilet clogs when a large amount of toilet paper is needed. 

Prevent Blocked Sewer Lines

sewer linesA clogged sewer line is one of the worst things that can happen to a home plumbing system on Thanksgiving because repairs are often complex. There are a few ways that a clog can form further down the sewer line. One way is if there is a buildup of grease, soap scum, or other materials in the line. This can happen when drains aren’t cleaned regularly. Another way that a clog can form is if tree roots have grown into the sewer line. This is more common in areas with older sewer lines made of clay or other materials that roots can easily penetrate.

If there is a clog further down the sewer line, it can cause several problems. First, it can cause sewage to back up into the home through the drains. This can lead to a nasty mess and can also cause health problems. Second, it can cause the sewer line to burst, leading to extensive damage and a costly repair bill. Finally, it can increase the water bill as the extra water has to go somewhere and often ends up overflowing into the street or yard.

Homeowners can do a few things to prevent clogs from forming further down the sewer line. First, ensure that drains are cleaned regularly by a plumber qualified to perform drain cleaning. This will help remove any buildup of materials that could potentially clog the line. Second, if homeowners have an older home with outdated plumbing, they can consider replacing it with new plumbing that is less susceptible to clogs. Finally, if tree roots are a problem in an area, have a professional come out and inspect the sewer line regularly to ensure that they are not penetrating it. 

Plumbing Maintenance Helps Prevent Disasters

Homeowners can take preventative steps to keep disasters at bay this holiday season by hiring a professional plumber to perform maintenance and inspections. Drain cleaning and inspections can go a long way in keeping the home plumbing system working smoothly. A plumbing emergency, while guests are staying at the house for Thanksgiving can be embarrassing, so homeowners should act now rather than later. 

Working on plumbing systems can be dangerous. Risks of amateur plumbing repairs or maintenance include property damage or personal injury. To keep things safe, homeowners should leave plumbing maintenance up to professionals. 

Drain cleaning and maintenance are essential for keeping the plumbing system in good working order. A professional can help clear away any build-up of debris or sediment that may be clogging drains and also inspect them for any potential problems. This can help prevent serious issues like leaks or blockages from developing and save homeowners money in the long run. 

About Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning

Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning is a family-owned and operated company serving Santa Maria, CA, and the surrounding neighborhoods. They provide same-day service, on-time arrivals, and financing. Call them today for plumbing and drain cleaning services in Santa Maria, CA

Heater Maintenance Tips For Fall

Get the Heater Ready For Colder Temperatures

Preparing for fall involves more than just shopping for sweaters. With fall comes a drop in temperatures and a rise in heater usage. Maintenance is especially important to keep heaters working efficiently. Finding and taking care of potential problems now will prevent getting stuck in a cold living room later due to a broken heater. 

Heater Maintenance 

maintenanceEven in California, preparing for colder weather is crucial. Cold indoor temperatures can cause respiratory problems, so a working heating system is important. An annual heater tune-up is recommended, regardless of the brand, to keep the system working safely and efficiently. During the maintenance visit, a technician will examine the system, including the thermostat, blower motor, wire connections, coils, and safety controls. 

When an HVAC system is not running as it should, homeowners can expect to see a sudden increase in the power bill. However, the high energy costs could also be from neglecting maintenance. The benefits of heater maintenance are energy bill costs decrease, a longer system lifespan, fewer repairs, and better indoor air quality. Technicians can also find and fix problems before they worsen while they clean and inspect the system. Maintenance this fall can improve heaters before the cold sets in. 

Air Filters Matter

filterWhile trained technicians handle issues within the system, homeowners can help in other ways. Replacing the air filters is one of the easiest ways to help maintain heating and cooling systems and is something homeowners should do regularly to keep the unit working right. 

A dirty air filter prevents air from circulating. Not only can energy bills increase, but the air will not feel as warm or cold as the thermostat says it should. Air filters that are never replaced can even cause the system to shut down and can be a fire hazard for overheating furnaces. 

There are different types of air filters available. Many homeowners choose disposable filters because they are relatively cheap and only need to be replaced around once every three months. Regardless of the type, air filters must be placed front to back. Placing them the incorrect way will affect indoor air quality. Changing the air filter also reduces the likelihood of mold or mildew, which is incredibly helpful for those with allergies.

Energy Usage

Regular maintenance can help homeowners save money, but it’s still advised that they monitor their energy usage. A sudden increase in energy bills is a sign there could be something wrong with the system and will alert homeowners to the problem. However, this sign of a faulty unit is unreliable without maintenance because if maintenance is neglected, that could cause the higher bills.   

Installing a smart thermostat is one of the easiest ways to reduce energy usage and save money. This technology allows the thermostat to be changed remotely from a smartphone. The heater can automatically shut off when nobody is home to save as much energy as possible. 

Weatherstripping around windows and doors can also help reduce energy bills by preventing heat losses this fall and winter. By using a special kind of tape, windows can be effectively sealed. A tension seal is made from a durable type of plastic used along the sides and top of windows. 

About Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning

Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning is a family-owned and operated company serving Santa Maria, CA, and the surrounding areas since 1993. They offer reasonable rates, same-day service, and financing options. Call them today for heating maintenance in Santa Maria, CA.

Benefits of Installing a Water Filtration System

Reasons to Invest In a Water Filtration System

  • Improve the taste of tap water
  • Safer and cleaner drinking water 
  • Saves money
  • Environmentally friendly 

Water is one of life’s necessities for cleaning, cooking, bathing, and drinking. Water filtration systems improve water quality by removing contaminants. The most popular type of water filtration system is a reverse osmosis system. 

What is a water filtration system? Tap water can contain numerous contaminants and have an unpleasant aftertaste from the water processing plant. Reverse osmosis water filters push the water through a semipermeable membrane that purifies the water of any contaminants for better tasting, safer water. Installing a water filtration system means the home will always have clean, healthy, and safe water for drinking and other tasks. 

Improve Water’s Safety and Taste

water Tap water can contain contaminants, including microorganisms that can damage gut health. Homeowners can protect their health by drinking filtered water. Some tap water also contains heavy metals and other harmful pollutants. Installing a water filtration system protects the homeowner’s health by ensuring clean water.

Reverse osmosis water filters produce cleaner-tasting water. Better-tasting water directly from the tap encourages families to drink more water and spend less on water bottles. Cooking with cleaner water can even make a difference in how food tastes. 

The minerals and heavy metals often in tap water can dry skin and hair. Installing a water filtration system provides cleaner water for bathing without all the harsh chemicals. Skin, hair, and nails look more hydrated when washed with clean and filtered water. 

Save Money

save Homeowners can help prevent plumbing issues and preserve their plumbing fixtures and pipes by installing a water filtration system. Corrosive materials in the water, such as heavy metals and minerals, can create rust and leaks in plumbing fixtures. A water filtration system can remove contaminants that lead to corrosion, so plumbing systems last longer and homeowners save money. 

Water filtrations systems also save homeowners money by preventing the need to buy bottled water. Buying plastic water bottles for the family can add up, but families can leave that heavy item off the grocery list by having clean, better-tasting drinking water directly from the home’s taps.  

Eliminate Waste and Help the Environment

Water bottles are one of the most common items found in landfills and polluting the ocean because most do not get recycled. Homeowners can waste hundreds of dollars each year on water bottles that end up in landfills or hurt sea creatures in the ocean. Installing a water filtration system is an eco-friendly alternative to bottled water, providing clean water whenever needed. 

Eliminating plastic water bottle waste helps the environment, and homeowners can save a ton of money by removing water bottles from their grocery bills. Installing a high-quality water filtration system ensures that there will always be clean and healthy drinking water at home.

About Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning

Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning is a family-owned and operated company serving Santa Maria, CA, and the surrounding areas for nearly three decades. They provide same-day service, reasonable rates, and on-time arrival. Call them today for water filtration systems in Santa Maria, CA

Air Conditioning 101: Learn the Basics

What to Know About Central AC (and Other AC Systems)

To understand the air conditioning basics, someone doesn’t have to be a licensed HVAC professional. All they need is a few moments of their time, and they can learn important information to help keep their system in good shape. They can also learn what AC system works best for their home and the advantages of alternative sources.

Common Types of Air Conditioners

Many people in Santa Maria, CA, have central AC systems. This means that cool air comes from a centralized source and is filtered to various parts of the home through ducts. There are many advantages to centralized AC systems, such as:

  • They can last 15-20 years with appropriate maintenance.
  • These units reduce humidity throughout the home. This reduces the possibility of mold growth and promotes good indoor air quality.
  • Central AC units also add to homes’ resale values. They’re not as visible as other units and are efficient at cooling even the largest of homes.

ductless mini-splitAside from centralized AC units, other types of air conditioners include:

  • Ductless mini-splits: These units don’t rely on ductwork, reducing pollutants in the air. Because they don’t rely on ductwork, they’re usually pretty easy to install and more energy efficient, lowering energy bills. They also allow homeowners to set different temperatures for different parts of the house.
  • Portable AC units: Many portable AC units come on wheels, allowing users to move them around the house easily. They also use less energy than many traditional AC units.
  • Window AC units: These are ideal for mild or cooler climates. Installation is easy, and one can uninstall it within minutes when winter comes around.

Three Signs That an AC System Needs Repairs

higher energy billsThree signs that an AC unit needs professional attention include:

  • High energy bills: Everyone should have a basic idea of how much their monthly energy bills cost. If one’s energy bill unexpectedly spikes, this could mean the AC is working “overtime” to cool the home.
  • Sounds coming from the AC unit: The AC unit should have a quiet hum while it’s on. Any other noise could indicate problems with the motor blower, coils, or fan.
  • The home doesn’t get cool: While many AC units can last more than ten years without problems, their internal components generally don’t last that long. A professional can assess one’s system and determine what is not working as expected.

What to Know About AC Maintenance

Ways for homeowners to maintain the AC system include:

  • Changing the air filter at least once every three months
  • Keeping the area around the AC system clear of clutter
  • Promptly address any leaks or puddles around the AC system’s base by calling a professional
  • Regularly clean dust and other debris away from the AC unit’s vents
  • Schedule a cleaning of the unit’s ductwork every three to five years if it has ducts

Homeowners should also schedule AC maintenance visits with a professional at least once a year. A professional can run a diagnostic test, check for problems, and recommend a course of action for any issues.

About Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning

Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning is a family-owned and operated company serving Santa Maria, CA, and the surrounding areas since 1993. They offer reasonable rates, same-day service, and financing options. Call them today for air conditioning services in Santa Maria, CA.

The Beginner’s HVAC Manual

HVAC: What is It?

HVAC is a system comprised of smaller units for the heating, ventilation, and cooling of a home. HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. The HVAC system includes parts such as the furnace, air conditioner, heat pumps, ductwork, thermostats, and other devices that control the home’s temperature.

HVAC: What Does it Do?

HVAC systems are manufactured to assist in cooling and heating air in an indoor space. They help move and circulate the air throughout the home while also ensuring that it maintains the appropriate temperature that the thermostat is set to.

HVAC systems are comprised of three main units: a heating unit, a cooling unit, and ductwork. The HVAC system begins by ventilating fresh air into the home or building. If the thermostat is set to cool, then the fan in the air conditioning unit will pull air in and over the evaporator coils. These evaporator coils use refrigerants to cool the air. It is then blown into the ducts and eventually released inside the home.

Similarly, heat pumps and furnaces work the same way as the air conditioning unit. Air is pulled through the ducts, heated, and then released back out and into the home, creating a comfortable and warm environment during the winter months.

HVAC’s Most Important Parts

evaporator coilThere are many parts to an HVAC system, but some are more important than others. Some of these important parts are:

  • The thermostat: helps to maintain a comfortable temperature depending on the settings
  • The heat exchanger: is used to transfer heat and is used for both heating and cooling
  • The blower motor: helps to distribute the air throughout the ductwork
  • The condenser coil: also known as a condenser compressor, helps in cooling the air inside by releasing heat from indoors into the outdoors
  • The evaporator coil: works to absorb heat and lower the temperature inside the home
  • The ductwork: helps to distribute air throughout the entire home

These parts play a vital role in an HVAC system’s overall performance and should be properly taken care of during its lifespan.

Proper Maintenance

replace the air filterScheduling routine maintenance is necessary to keep an HVAC unit running smoothly and efficiently. Homeowners who ignore maintenance risk their HVAC system breaking down in the dead of summer and having to wait weeks for a technician to become available to repair the system. Routine maintenance will also help the system produce and distribute warm or cool air more evenly throughout the home and prevent the need for a premature replacement.

Additionally, there are a few maintenance tasks that homeowners can do themselves, including changing the air filters. This important step can help maintain the system’s longevity and functionality. It should be done once every three months or more if the home is occupied by pets or allergy sufferers.

About Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning

Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning is a family-owned and operated company serving California’s Central Coast since 1993. They provide reasonable rates, same-day service, and 24/7 emergency service. Call them today for heating or air conditioning services in Santa Maria, CA.

What is the Difference Between Hard and Soft Water?

Are you a homeowner in California? If so, you probably know about hard water and deal with it on a day-to-day basis. According to U.S. Geological Survey, 89.3% of homes in the United States are considered to have hard water, with some of the highest levels in California. Although hard water can be found across the country, areas of the Southwest have some of the hardest water due to hot weather, the mineral content of its groundwater, and the lack of regular rainfall.

Water can either be hard, or soft. Hard water does not describe the actual feeling of the water. Instead, it is called hard water because it has mineral deposits like calcium and magnesium within the water molecules. Soft water doesn’t have any type of mineral deposits within it, and just has H2O molecules.

Water doesn’t start out containing minerals, though. When it rains, that water is considered soft water. Water becomes hard when it seeps into the ground and absorbs calcium and magnesium. It then takes these minerals into water treatment plants, which get pumped into homes.

There are different types of water throughout the United States because there are different types of rocks and sediment water has to pass through that will leave mineral deposits, or won’t. While hard water is safe to drink, it can be frustrating for homeowners.

Problems Homeowners Face with Hard Water
Homeowners with hard water tend to use more soap in the laundry or in the shower. Hard water simply doesn’t lather as well as soft water, so homeowners with hard water spend more money on cleaning agents. Tests from the Scientific Service of New York found that homes with soft water get better stain remover with 50% less laundry detergent.

Hard water also reacts with soap and creates what is known as scum. Scum can be removed with most household cleaners, as well as vinegar or baking soda.

Another problem that homeowners with hard water face is scale. When hard water is heated, the minerals come out of the water and create scale: hard mineral deposits. This causes spots to form on dishes, kettles, showerheads and faucets. While that can be frustrating to clean off over and over, hard water can also deposit scale within water heaters and pipes. Scale can keep building up within pipes to the point where water pressure has diminished, and eventually the pipes will have to be replaced.

Scale within water heaters can build up and make it so the burner that heats the water must heat through a thick layer of scale, which makes it harder to heat your water, making your water heater less efficient and burn out before it’s intended lifespan.

Call Jerry’s Plumbing, Heating, & Air Conditioning (800) 697-8875 for all your plumbing needs!

Perhaps you haven’t noticed any issues but you want to be sure you are running at peak efficiency and are avoiding any potential hazards. Did you know that Air Conditioning or HVAC Systems that are improperly installed, or even sized incorrectly can:

  • Be more costly
  • Promote mold growth
  • Leak harmful toxins (including carbon monoxide)
  • Start fires