Hiring a Jefferson Plumber: What to Look for

There are plenty of situations in which you will need the services of a professional plumber in your Jefferson home. And when you have a plumbing emergency, you really need it to be addressed as quickly as possible. But how do you know which plumber to call? It is likely that all of them can get the job done, but you want to make sure you do not have to pay too much and that the work is done right so that the same problem does not recur in the near future.

Since an emergency repair needs to be done quickly, it is a good idea to come up with a list of possible plumbers ahead of time. Of course, if you are hiring a plumber to work on a new construction installation or home remodeling project, you will have more time to research your options. But it is important to note that, while all plumbers can likely perform repairs, it is better to get someone who specializes in that type of work you need to have done.

When you are evaluating your plumber options, one of the first things to check is whether or not they have all necessary state certifications and licenses. Even if these licenses are not legally required for a plumber to work in your area, it is better to hire someone who has them because you can have greater confidence that they are aware of all of the local codes and restrictions.

If you are hiring a plumber for a home renovation or installation job, be sure to have them come out to examine your house and give you a detailed estimate for the materials and costs involved in the process. You may even want to get several estimates from different plumbers before you make your final decision.

And do not forget one of the greatest resources you have when searching for a plumber – your family and friends. Gathering recommendations from someone who has used a particular plumber before is an excellent way for you to narrow down the potential options and find a Jefferson plumber you can have confidence in. Our motto is “Where Our Customers Send Their Friends” for a reason, so ask around and then give Larry & Sons a call today!

Harpers Ferry Plumbing Guide: How to Stop a Toilet from Overflowing

An overflowing toilet is a really unpleasant problem to have in your Harpers Ferry home, and one you will undoubtedly want to correct right away. Toilets are reliable in that they tend to last a long time and not act up much, but when yours does start to malfunction, you pay attention right away.

To start with, examine the root cause of the overflow problem. There are three major causes of overflow: a clogged or blocked drain that does not allow the toilet to flush properly, an improperly adjusted float that allows the tank to overfill and a blocked vent pipe that replaces the air in the pipe after each flush.

Each of these requires a different course of action, so let’s discuss each individually.

If the drain is blocked, you will probably know right away. For one, water will overflow from the toilet’s bowl rather than the tank. For another, there will probably be quite a mess. Treating this type of overflow problem is straightforward—remove the clog. For simple clogs, a plunger and some elbow grease will get it done. Another trick is to stick the open mouth of an empty two liter bottle into the drain and squeeze. The blast of air can knock the clog free.

If your toilet is clogging and overflowing frequently, however, the problem may not be with the drain or with anything you are doing. It may be that the vent pipe is clogged. A vent pipe moves external into the plumbing system to replace the air that is pumped out with each flush. When it is blocked, the toilet can’t flush properly, which can lead to overflowing. If you have trouble with frequent clogging, call a Harpers Ferry plumber to inspect the situation.

In both of those situations, the toilet bowl will overflow. Another possibility is that the tank overflows, which is a different kind of problem. This is often cause by the filler float being set too high, so the tank fills with too much water. You can fix this by simply adjusting the mechanism inside the tank that controls the level of the float.

Whether it’s one of these three, or something else entirely, when your toilet overflows, be sure to check it out and get it fixed right away.

Hedgesville Heat Pump Guide: What to Do About Ice and Snow

It’s very common for heat pumps in Hedgesville to ice over in the winter time. It can be due to freezing temperatures and icing outside or it could be due to constant running of the heat pump or excess moisture on the coils. However, while a bit of ice on the heat pump is relatively normal, the entire unit should never be covered in ice – such a thing is not only hard on the machinery; it can result in no heat for your home.

How to Handle Ice and Snow on the Heat Pump

Should your heat pump become covered in ice or snow in the winter time, there are a few things you can do and some things you should not do. First, check to make sure the problem isn’t related to a broken defrost cycle timer. The heat pump should go into a defrost cycle every 30-90 minutes to keep excess ice from building up. If this doesn’t happen, it should be inspected for a thermostat or sensor problem.

To actually remove the ice from the unit, never use a sharp object to pick the ice clear. You can easily damage the coils or another part of the unit and leave it permanently broken. The best way to remove ice from your heat pump is to rinse it off with a hose – even cold water will remove ice. Just be sure the defrost cycle is ready to come back on so the water used to rinse away the ice doesn’t freeze.

Remember to check your emergency heating source and make sure it is switched on while this is happening. Your heat pump likely won’t work properly while iced over and if it is left in the on position, excess stress on the device will cause damage.

To avoid this kind of damage, turn off the heat pump and turn on your emergency heating source, then clear away the ice and check the defrost timer. If everything works properly, turn the heat pump back on, but if you find any problems, call a professional to do a more thorough inspection of the device before you use it again.

Hedgesville Heating Contractor Tip: Is Your Furnace Making too Much Noise?

The old saying that “It is better to be seen than heard” certainly applies to the mechanical equipment in your Hedgesville home. If you hear a squeaky noise or loud clattering you automatically suspect that something is wrong. And if that noise is coming from your furnace, you better pay attention to it. A noise is an obvious sign of a problem – minor or major – and it could result in mechanical failure that could leave your home cold and uncomfortable – and affect your home’s indoor air quality.

Today’s newer variable-speed furnaces keep a constant airflow through the ventilation system utilizing a low speed fan that consumes small amounts of electricity. Constant airflow brings in fresh air and keeps the room air from becoming stale or stagnant. Because of this constant operation, it is important to ensure the furnace is running at peak efficiency, which also means that it is running quietly.

Here are some common noises, possible reasons, and suggested repairs. As always, if you are in doubt about how to repair your furnace, call a local qualified heating contractor and schedule a service call.

  • Squealing noise – could be a worn out or slipping blower belt. Check for proper tension of the belt or replace the belt if it is worn out or cracked.
  • Squealing noise – could be worn out motor shaft bearings. Lubricate the blower motor at the proper points.
  • Rumbling noise – often caused by a poorly adjusted pilot light when the burners are turned off. Adjust the pilot as necessary.
  • Rumbling noise – often caused by dirty gas burners when the burners are switched on. This problem requires service from a qualified heating technician.
  • Buzzing noise – often caused when a blower motor mounting come loose. Tighten the mounting screws or use shims to fill gaps.
  • Hissing noise – indicates a possible air leak. This problem requires service from a qualified heating technician.
  • Ticking noise – possibly a leaky gas valve. This problem requires service from a qualified heating technician.
  • Rattling noise – could be a dirty fan blade. Wipe the fan blade or clean with degreaser.
  • Rattling, grinding, or whining – could be resistance to airflow that causes the motor to work harder. Check the vents in each room for dirt, debris, or obstructions and clear them.
  • Vibrating noise – may not be the furnace but loose or cracked seams in the ventilation system. Check the ductwork seams and hangers to ensure everything is tight. You may need duct tape or bracket hardware.

The best way to keep your furnace and ventilation system from making noises is to practice preventative maintenance. Have your furnace checked annually by a qualified heating contractor – and enjoy the peace and quiet.

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