If there’s one thing that makes the holidays festive, it’s the food. Sure, it’s nice to meet family and talk about the year’s events, but let there be no confusion; everyone’s waiting on dinner. So whether you celebrate the holidays with a roasted turkey, glazed ham, or other treats, you can be sure that your ravenous family members will make short work of these culinary delights.

Your plumbing, on the other hand, may not be quite so eager to handle the leftovers. While it might not be the first thing on your mind during the holiday season, your pipes are under near-constant attack during these festivities. Between the fats washing down the drain, food scraps lodging themselves in your lines, and other issues, you’re practically guaranteed to have plumbing issues. Thankfully, we at Priority Plumbing are here to help you with a few tips to keep your plumbing flowing free and clear this holiday.

Separate Your Trash

Your sink drains can only handle so much waste, which helps separate your food waste before washing dishes. Start by cleaning compostables off of your plates and into a proper container. Next, you should place any other scraps in the trash to minimize the amount of work your disposal system needs to perform. While this goes without saying, don’t let plastic or other inorganic waste wash down your sink, or else you’re sure to have a clog form in your lines.

Feed Your Disposal System Slowly and Carefully

When it comes time to run your garbage disposal system, avoid overloading the feed. No matter how robust your disposal is, it’ll never be able to cope with an entire sink’s worth of waste. Instead, avoid jamming your disposal by feeding scraps with warm water flowing through them. This method will allow your system to perform more efficiently.

Avoid Certain Waste Entirely

Certain foods produce waste that is never fit for your garbage disposal. These include but are not limited to:

  • Eggs: Eggs contain membranes that wrap around some of your disposal’s components, potentially rendering them useless. Once ground down, the shells are difficult to get rid of and often result in serious clogs.
  • Fats: Fats and greases coat your system’s blades, thereby reducing their effectiveness. This same grease can also cause clogs to form in your lines, and you should avoid it at all costs.
  • Vegetable or Fruit Skins: While they may seem harmless, vegetable and fruit skins tend to get caught underneath your disposal system’s blades, reducing their effectiveness.
  • Bones, Shells, Pits, and Seeds: These tough byproducts can dull your system’s blades, slow operation, and even result in a burnt-out motor! Avoid byproducts at all costs.
  • Stringy vegetables, such as celery, often congest your system similarly to fruit and vegetable skins.
  • Rice, Pasta, or Tea Leaves: These soft foods can gum up your blades and eventually form serious clogs.

Have A Plumber Service Your Home Plumbing

The best way to ensure the integrity of your plumbing during the holiday season is to call a plumber to do a regular inspection. This examination will give you an overview of your system’s health and alert you to any existing issues that may worsen during the holidays. That means you won’t have to worry about your disposal system shutting down on you in the middle of your celebration. Better yet, you’ll avoid any potential back-ups and the embarrassment that comes with them.

Let Priority Plumbing Tackle Your Projects

Hopefully, these few tips are enough to help you avoid the most common plumbing issues people encounter during the holiday season. Unfortunately, however, accidents happen. Thankfully, you have us help you whenever you run into problems. When you need help preparing for the holiday season, let Priority Plumbing help you with our drain cleaning and garbage disposal services. We’ll help ensure that your plumbing system is in top form so that you can tackle this holiday season with confidence.

Of course, if you’re located elsewhere in the country, we can also help you find one of our reliable friends to help you. For service in California’s Central Valley, for example, rely on the Modesto drain cleaning services from Tony’s Plumbing Service!

ideal water heater

Need Help Choosing a Water Heater? Start Here.

If your home uses a conventional water heater, then chances are you know what it’s like to take a cold shower. However, what if we told you that there’s no need ever to fear running out of hot water again?

If your shower temperature switches from scalding hot to subfreezing during the course of a shower, then it simply isn’t cut out for your lifestyle. That means it’s time to kick it to the curb and look for something better. The only problem is, where do you start. The world of water heaters isn’t as simple as you might think. There are different form factors, power sources, and other features to consider when choosing a system, more than you could possibly imagine.

Thankfully, the expert plumbers of Priority Plumbing and Heating are here to guide you through the nonsense and help you find the water heater that best fits your needs.
With proper care and maintenance, new water heaters can deliver reliable service for a decade or more, which means that once you have your new one, you’ll be set for years to come.

Choose A System That Meets Your Needs

When choosing a new water heater, the first thing to consider is its capacity for producing hot water. If you’re only heating water for a single person, yourself, then you may be better off using nothing but the sun’s glorious rays to warm your bathwater(no, seriously). However, families of 6 or more will need a water heater to provide copious amounts of on-demand hot water.

Before selecting a water heater, you will need to determine the amount of hot water your family uses. Take the total number of people living in your residence and add 1 to that number. Then take that sum and multiply it by 12. The result is the first-hour rating. This number is the amount of hot water in gallons that a water heater should be able to make during the first hour that a faucet is open.

A tankless(or on-demand) water heater is rated based on the gallons per minute (GPM) that flow from a single faucet. Determine the number of hot water faucets that typically operate simultaneously in your household, and multiply this number by three, the average GPM flow rate of a tap. The result is the heating capacity rating of a tankless unit.

With these few pieces of advice in mind, you should be able to tell if a water heater can meet the needs of your household.

Pick the Water Heater That Fits Your Unique Style

When it comes to water heaters, there are conventional ones, tankless ones, heaters that use solar energy, heaters that re-purpose your home’s heat to warm water, and even some that draw heat from elsewhere to do their job(more on that later). No matter how they do it, all heaters still only have one job, they take water and heat it so that you can soak in a bubble bath without catching hypothermia.

Unless you’re in a unique situation, chances are you will either want to install a conventional or tankless water heater. The former uses fire or an electric coil to heat a massive water tank. The latter does the same, except it does it without the tank.

Conventional, or traditional, water heaters come with a large tank that stores heated water, which requires ample space. Gas models also need additional space for air to circulate around the burner unit. Overall, these models are fairly reliable until they inevitably run out of water. Plus, the operating costs of one are much higher than a tankless one.

If you do not have the space to install a traditional model, a tankless water heater is your best bet. This appliance requires less space because it does not store water. Tankless heaters warm water only when a hot water faucet is open. Although more expensive than standard water heaters, tankless units are more energy efficient as they do not continually heat and reheat water in a storage tank.

Customize Your Water Heater’s Power Source!

Whether you select a water heater with a storage tank or a tankless unit, you will have to decide what energy source it will use to heat the water. Both water heaters can run on electricity, propane, or natural gas. Still, some may be able to run on more, ahem, exotic energy sources.

Solar water heaters, for example, circulate water through sun-warmed pipes before returning it into your home. On the other hand, specific heat pump models can use the constant heat of geothermal energy to heat your water!

Unfortunately, these more eco-friendly(and much cooler) power sources are only available to a select few people. The rest of us have can only pick from what is available to us as public utilities.

Pick Your Ideal Water Heater Today

Once you know how much water you use, which water heater best serves your needs, and whether or not you can run yours on volcano power, it’s time to choose a heater. If you’re still unsure which make and model is best for you, call Priority Plumbing and Heating at (303) 933-7246 and get the best advice from professionals.

Alternatively, if you live in the Denver area, you could give our friends at Done Plumbing & Heating a call for help with your leaks. Done’s the authority when it comes to Aurora leak detection & repair, and they can help you find a solution for all of your leaks.

Plumbers install water pipes behind walls and under concrete, mainly for the benefit of the homeowner. After all, who wants to be tripping over and running into exposed pipes all day.

However, when it comes to spotting leaks in your plumbing, this setup is less than ideal. More often than not, you won’t even realize you leak until you’re ankle-deep in the water!

If you want to avoid flooding, water damage, and all of the issues that come along with leaky pipes, all you need to do is lookout for these few signs.

An Increase In Your Water Bill

There aren’t always visible traces of a water leak, but there’s always one place where you’ll find evidence of a leak; your water bill. Even small leaks often waste tens of gallons of water a day. So over the course of a month, the water wasted because of a small leak will add up and create a noticeable increase in water spending. If you have multiple or large leaks, this change will be all the more noticeable.

Water Spots

If a leak is seeping into building materials, you’re sure to see wet spots develop. They’ll start small but soon grow to saturate the area around the leak.

If you find a wet spot in your home that won’t dry no matter what you do, then chances are good you leak your pipes. Take care of these leaks quickly, or you’ll have a larger issue on your hands, namely mold!

Mold & Mildew

Whenever dry building materials touch moisture, one thing is sure to follow; mold. Mold can not only compromise a building’s structural integrity, but the spores it puts out can be harmful to people!

Whenever you see mold in your home (and no, not in those week-old leftovers in the fridge), make sure to call professionals to inspect it. Then make sure to call a plumber to assess and repair the leak in your home before the problem worsens.

Foundation Cracks

While most other problems caused by leaks are easy enough to solve, foundation cracks could be the end of your home. These fissures result from concrete slab leaks that slowly permeate a building’s foundation and weaken it. Eventually, the slab gives out under the weight of the building and begins to buckle. If you notice any cracks in your property’s foundation, be sure to call an expert quickly. If not caught in time, fractures could spell the end of a building.

Fix Water Leaks Before It’s Too Late

These signs are all great and easy ways to identify leaks, but they’re not foolproof. The only way to know whether or not you have leaks is to call a professional plumber like Priority Plumbing And Heating. We can use the latest leak detection technology to pinpoint the position of a leak in your plumbing. We even provide emergency services for when you have a leak that needs care immediately. So contact us today, and we’ll help you identify and eliminate any of the leaks on your property.