Repeat After Me: Drain, Waste, Vent

Category: Drain Cleaning


Drainage Systems Whether your Boston home is on a sewer or septic system, the systems within your home are essentially the same. Drainage systems do not depend on pressure, as supply systems do. Instead, waste matter leaves your house because the drainage pipes all pitch, or angle, downward. Gravity pulls the waste along. The sewer line continues this downward flow to a sewage treatment facility or a septic tank. While the system sounds simple, there’s more to it, including vents, traps, and clean outs. The vents sticking up from the roof of your Boston home allow air to enter the drainpipes. If there were no air supply coming from the vents, wastewater would not flow out properly and the water in the traps would need to be siphoned away. Traps are vital components of the drainage system. You can see a trap under every sink. It is the curved or S-shape section of pipe under a drain. Water flows from the basin with enough force to go through the trap and out through the drainpipe, but enough water stays in the trap afterward to form a seal that prevents sewer gas from backing up into your Boston home. Every fixture must have a trap. Toilets are self-trapped and don’t require an additional trap at the drain. Bathtubs frequently have drum […]

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Plumbing Pratfalls

Category: Plumbing


No one wants to face expensive but avoidable plumbing repairs.  There are going to be times when calling your Boston plumber is inevitable – but to lengthen the time between housecalls, avoid these plumbing errors. Putting grease down the sink -Please don’t put grease down the drain.  Even with hot water and soap, grease can build up over time causing problems with your pipes. Using your sink as a trash can – Even if you have a garbage disposal, that does not give you a free pass to dump everything and anything down the drain.  Food chunks in the kitchen or hair and fingernails in the bathroom serve as the start of a terrible clog. Using the toilet as a trash can – The toilet has its given role, the trash can has another.  Do not confuse the two. Using too much Drain-O – Using drain cleaner too often or on the wrong type of clog could lead to erosion of your pipes or just a really nasty clog for your Boston plumber to clean out. Mixing metals – If you decide to replace the pipes yourself for a portion of your Boston home’s plumbing system, please do not mix piping metals.  This can lead to corrosion, leaks, and a number of other headaches. Lack of insulation – If you […]

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Flush Up With Upflush

Category: Uncategorized


What is an Upflush Toilet? The upflush toilet is a great addition to any Boston home. It is also more cost effective compared to a standard toilet in terms of the amount of flushing water it uses. When the upflush toilet is flushed, the water level will be pressured so that it rises into the treatment tank. In the treatment tank, the grinder motor cuts the feces automatically so that it becomes macerated. The rotating blades will grind the contents in 3 – 4 seconds. The finely ground feces is pumped into a standard pipe which measures 0.75 to 1 inch in diameter. After that, the tank becomes empty so that the system can be reused. The upflush toilet is designed to solve the problem of a standard toilet. The important feature in an upflush toilet is the macerator pump and small diameter pipe. The powerful macerator contains a sharp blade which can effectively shred the feces and toilet paper so that they become liquefied in the water. Once it is mixed with water, it can easily be flushed into the upward pipe. The quiet electric pump generates the pressure for moving the slurry upward in the pipe. The narrow pipe which measure ¾ inch in diameter solves the structural problems in most homes. The finely grinded slurry will be […]

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Some Like It Hot – But Safety Trumps Heat

Category: Water Heaters


Can tap water really cause serious burns? Yes. Most Boston hot water heaters are set to a temperature of 60°C (140° F). Water this hot can severely scald a child’s skin in just one second. A scald is a second-degree or third-degree burn caused by hot liquid or steam. Hot coffee, tea, soup and other hot foods are the most common causes of scalds to young children. Hot tap water is a less common cause, but these scalds are often more severe – and they are easy to prevent. To prevent tap water scalds, the hot water at all your taps should be no hotter than 49°C (120°F). At this temperature, it takes about 10 minutes to burn a child’s skin. Tap water scalds can happen anywhere that the water is too hot – not just in the bath. Children have been scalded by hot tap water when playing at the sink, or by putting their hands or feet into a bucket filled with hot tap water for household cleaning. Why are children more at risk? Children are more at risk for tap water scalds because: A child’s skin is thinner and more sensitive than an adult’s skin. A child’s skin burns more quickly – so even a very short exposure to water that is too hot can cause a […]

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Hammer Time! (Sorry MC – WATER Hammer)

Category: Plumbing


Water hammer is a specific plumbing noise, not a generic name for pipe clatter. It occurs when you shut off the water suddenly and the fast-moving water rushing through the pipe is brought to a quick halt, creating a sort of shock wave and a hammering noise. Plumbing that’s properly installed has air chambers, or cushions, that compress when the shock wave hits, softening the blow and preventing this hammering. The chambers can fail, though, because water under pressure gradually absorbs the air. If you never had hammering and then it suddenly starts, most likely your Boston plumbing system’s air chambers have become waterlogged. You can cure water hammer by turning off the water behind the waterlogged chamber, opening the offending faucet and permitting the faucet to drain thoroughly. Once all the water drains from the chamber, air will fill it again and restore the cushion. If the air chamber is located below the outlet, you may have to drain the main supply lines to allow the chamber to fill with air again. The air chamber will not drain properly if it’s clogged with scale or residue from chemicals or minerals in the water. The chamber always should be larger than the supply pipe to preclude such clogging. Since the chamber is simply a capped length of pipe, however, all […]

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Pipes That Go Bump in the Night

Category: Plumbing


Water flowing in pipes can cause all kinds of weird noises. We all know what water running through a pipe sounds like, but what about some of those other plumbing sounds – like creaks or cracking sounds, rattling, whistling and the most annoying or scary of them all, that loud banging noise? Let’s look at what causes those sounds and how you can fix them.  You should be able to manage most of these, but if the problem persists you should seek the service of your Boston plumber. He can easily handle any pipe repair or installation that may be necessary. Creaks or a cracking sound These are usually caused by the expansion and contraction of the water pipes themselves. As hot water runs through a pipe, it naturally heats the pipe, causing it to expand slightly. Once the water stops flowing, the pipe cools and the metal contracts, resulting in the creaking or cracking sound. The easiest way to fix this is to put some insulation around the pipe, or if the pipe is running through a tight fitting hole in the wood framing, cut a notch in the framing so the pipe can expand and then contract without that creaking sound. Rattling The cause and remedy are similar to the cracking sound. The rattling sound comes from the […]

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Take the Plunge

Category: Drain Cleaning


There are several different types of plungers available to clear partially or completely clogged drains, but all use basically the same principal. A plunger is used to create a positive or negative pressure inside the pipe to loosen the blockage and allow it to flow down the drain. As a first line of defense against any clog, a plunger is a safe bet.  However, if you’re clog proves to be too much for this simple tool, your Boston plumber can handle any clog you’ve got. Sink Plunger This is the standard plunger that we all recognize and has probably been around as long as indoor plumbing. Consisting of a pliable rubber cup and handle, this plunger is capable of creating both a positive pressure (by forcing the cup down) and a negative pressure (vacuum) when pulled away from the fixture. Variations on the design are typically limited to the size of the cup and length of the handle. The sink plunger; as it name suggests, is best used on sinks or relatively flat fixtures to which it can create a suction seal. When using the sink plunger: Cover the overflow hole of the sink or tub; Keep the fixture partially full of water, because water is not easily compressed it will place a stronger force on the blockage; Plunge forcefully […]

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Stainless Steel at Your Service



About Stainless Steel Sinks Stainless steel sinks aren’t “perfect”; no material is perfect for all conditions/situations. We are not aware of any material that is more durable and more “ideal” for sinks than quality stainless steel. Stainless steel sinks are made from nickel bearing stainless steel. The mellow satin surface is compatible with any décor and color scheme. It is timeless and elegant, and like fine silver, its beautiful finish becomes lovelier with use and age. A quality stainless steel sink, with proper care and maintenance, will give you a lifetime of service. Why Stainless Steel is “Stainless When the chromium in the stainless steel is exposed to oxygen an invisible layer of chromium oxide (Cr2O3) is formed. This layer is impervious to water and air giving the stainless steel exceptional corrosion resistant properties. 6 Reasons Why We Like Stainless Steel Sinks Tough – Stainless steel is more durable than porcelain and cast iron, and more forgiving than composites. Stainless steel sinks won’t chip, nick or crack. Thin stainless sinks can get dented, but “cheap” sinks of any other materials tend to have less life (longevity) than a “cheap” stainless steel sink. Luster – Stainless steel will not rust, stain or fade, and the finish resists scratches. It keeps its luster longer while other materials will show their age. Absorbs […]

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Sorry – This Toilet Doesn’t Do Windows



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Getting Caulky in Boston

Category: Uncategorized


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