Lowering Utility Bills May Be As Easy As Turning a Wrench - Blue Frost Heating & Cooling
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Lowering Utility Bills May Be As Easy As Turning a Wrench

For many of us knowing which end of the wrench to hold can be a challenge in itself! If your spouse will not allow you to play with tools, or you would rather not invest your free-time working on a toilet or a gas pipe, then lean on us for repairs done right the first time.

Some of the common plumbing problems around the home can start as simple annoyances like a faucet with a constant drip. But others can lead to disaster if they remain unchecked. Here are some of the most common problems found in homes and some suggestions as to how to deal with them.

Gas Leaks

Some gas leaks are obvious when the familiar foul odor of rotten eggs draws immediate attention. Other leaks may be so small that they go unnoticed. These tiny leaks are still dangerous and are more easily checked by a professional They have special detectors with microthermal conductivity sensors that respond rapidly to the smallest of leaks.

Your local natural gas company will often sponsor gas safety events in your community to further educate homeowners on gas safety in the home. You can also
check with your HVAC contractor when they come into your home to tune up your furnace or air conditioner. Plumbers also carry these sensors. When you call for a plumber, ask if they have gas detecting devices and can perform a safety test. In addition to testing around the furnace, request that they use their device to inspect in the kitchen around a gas stove or in the laundry room around a gas dryer. Leaks around these areas are more common than people realize.

Leaky Toilets

An unchecked leaky toilet can send your hard earned money down the drain. Typical leaks in the toilet occur inside the water storage compartment. The rubber flapper may have worn out or cracked and can no longer stop the water from slowly leaking into the toilet and going down the drain. These types of leaks can be fixed by replacing the flapper. Be sure to take the flapper with you to the store to make sure you get the same model as the one you need to replace.

Other leaks in this area may occur due to a handle that is not tightened or faulty fill valve. The fill valve controls the refilling of the tank after the toilet is flushed. The float valve attached to the fill valve may need adjusting or you may need a new fill valve. You can replace this valve yourself by following manufacturer’s instructions or you can call a local plumber to help you solve the problem.

Serious leaks can also occur at the base of the toilet. These are the worst kind because they can go unnoticed for long periods of time and cause structural damage to the home. To find out if there is a leak at the base of your toilet add some food coloring to the storage tank. Then, completely wipe around the base of the toilet to make a leak more noticeable. Wait about an hour and return to wipe around the base of the toilet once again with a paper towel. If the towel shows the color of the food coloring, then you have a leak at the base.

In this situation, you’ll need to replace the wax ring or flange. You can purchase these items at your local hardware store, but installing them may be more than you want to take on. Call a plumber at any time for assistance.

Leaky Shower Heads

Shower head leaks can be repaired easily. Make sure to turn off the water to the shower before starting any repairs or inspection. First unscrew the shower head using a wrench if necessary. Remove the rubber gasket inside the shower head and replace it with one the same size. It should not be that hard to push the new gasket into place. Next, wrap some Teflon tape around the threads of the pipe prior to screwing the shower head back on. This will help create a perfect seal. Finally reattach the shower head by screwing it back onto the pipe and hand tightening it. Perform a test by turning on the water to see if the shower head still leaks. Hopefully the situation has been fixed.

If the shower head is still dripping, then you may need to fix the leak at the point where the faucet is turned on and off. In this situation, you will need to turn off the water main to stop the flow of water to the shower and replace the gasket inside the faucet.

Looking for ways to reduce energy and water use? Your local utilities company may have the answer. Nicor in the Chicagoland area offers homeowners a free energy saving kit that includes low-water shower heads in addition to kitchen and bathroom faucet aerators. These gadgets can significantly reduce the water consumption in your home and help you save on energy too by reducing your consumption of hot water.

Whether it’s a dangerous gas leak or a just a major hair ball stuck in your drain, help is just a phone call away!!!!!! Questions, Comments, Feedback? Give Our Office a Call Today! (630) 444-0860

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