Every homeowner in Jacksonville, FL, has to call a plumber at some point. You may benefit from establishing a good working relationship with your local plumber before you need urgent services. Regular maintenance also helps avoid many costly repairs. Prepare for regularly scheduled visits in advance to get the most value. Two-way communication with active interaction between both parties is much more productive than a few sentences on the phone.
It’s a good idea to know as much as possible about your home’s plumbing. Of course, a professional plumber knows more about plumbing issues in general, but plumbing professionals visit lots of homes and businesses. You can offer valuable information on the specific plumbing infrastructure in your home. It’s also much easier to identify problems if you know how the plumbing is supposed to work under normal circumstances. Basic information that every homeowner should know includes the location of the main water shutoff valve and shut-off valves for the toilet or other individual fixtures. Try to keep track of details such as the date of your last plumbing inspection and the age of your hot water heater. It doesn’t hurt to keep the purchase dates and maintenance schedules for all major appliances. Just write the information down in a small notebook or record it on an electronic file so you can produce the information quickly and easily.
Don’t hesitate to ask questions during a visit from your plumbing professional. Asking questions serves two purposes. It lets you gain information and gives your plumbing technician details and context that are very helpful for proactive maintenance or active repairs. Questions also help homeowners pinpoint problems and manage overall expectations. The internet is a valuable resource and it isn’t hard to find information on almost anything, but we always need to remember that people can say anything online. Make sure the websites you rely on are actually credible. Ask your plumber if you have any doubts about a particular website. You can also ask for recommendations.
Provide Accurate Details
Plumbing is closely linked to many daily activities that we handle in private. Showering and going to the bathroom are just two examples. Some people feel slightly uncomfortable with plumbers because it can feel like oversharing or inviting someone to dig through daily household life. Although gunk in our drains and pipes is related to our daily habits, plumbing professionals are used to these things. A professional plumber won’t see anything in your home that hasn’t already been seen in many other homes as well. Be honest about the daily habits for everyone in the household.
It’s very hard to assess any situation without accurate information, and plumbing is no different. For example, daily habits help estimate expected water use throughout the home. If the amount of water used each week or month seems too high, you may have a leak somewhere. Maintenance records for plumbing fixtures along with the estimated frequency of use can help estimate the fixture’s expected lifetime and schedule maintenance at appropriate intervals. Provide as much information as possible when calling for repairs. Explain to your plumber to your best ability what the problem is and provide the approximate date it was first noticed.
Natural Gas and Propane
It’s easy to forget that plumbers in Jacksonville, FL don’t just deal with water and pipes. They also handle the installation, repairs, and maintenance of natural gas-powered appliances. Although you should always call a professional if you suspect a problem with natural gas, there are some safety precautions that can be done immediately. Make sure every adult in the household knows where the gas shut-off valve is. Turn off the gas immediately at the first sign of a leak or other problem. Most homes have shut-off valves in the basement. Homes without basements may have valves in utility closets or a part of the home that doesn’t get much traffic. Evacuate everyone, people and pets, from the home and don’t re-enter the property until a professional says it’s safe.
Gas leaks are a serious issue that can be dangerous. Be aware of common causes of gas leaks so you can take steps to prevent them. Appliances powered by natural gas or propane, such as dryers, fireplaces, or water heaters, are connected to pipes that deliver fuel. These pipes tend to be much smaller and thinner than plumbing pipes. All connections between an appliance and supply line are sealed. Weak or degraded seals may allow gas to escape into your home. Ask your plumbing expert about combining plumbing maintenance and gas line inspections during the same appointments. If you notice that a seal is deteriorating between visits, treat it as a potential gas leak. It’s better to err on the side of safety than take risks.
Ventilation is the most important part of using gas-powered appliances. These appliances produce carbon monoxide, which is a colorless, odorless gas. In other words, you won’t know about carbon dioxide unless you have a working carbon monoxide detector in the house. The problem may become obvious when people start getting sick, but that may be too late. Carbon monoxide is especially dangerous at night because the gas doesn’t have any qualities that would wake someone up.
Sadly, people can sleep right through carbon monoxide poisoning. It also harms pets. Most of us have heard about ‘canaries in coal mines.’ The birds were used as basic alarm systems for toxic gasses. Of course, there are much better ways to detect carbon monoxide now, but the gas does cause symptoms in cats, dogs and other pets before it triggers symptoms in humans. Our pets tend to be much smaller than we are, and many small animals have faster metabolisms. Contact a professional if you notice sudden symptoms in your pets such as dizziness, walking in circles, lethargy, and abnormal behaviors. Alarms are a much better choice because none of us want to harm our pets, and the advance warning from a sick animal may not help much. By the time the animal is showing symptoms, all the people in the house have been exposed to the gas too.
Call Bert Norman’s Plumbing to schedule a consultation for your plumbing and gas appliance needs. The professional plumbers have the appropriate equipment and expertise to provide high-quality services for homeowners and business owners throughout Jacksonville, FL. Bert Norman’s Plumbing prides itself on timely, courteous service that goes above and beyond customer expectations.