Different Materials Used for Pipe Replacement

October 8th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

For many decades, the two most common materials for indoor plumbing were iron and galvanized steel. The latter continued to be used until the early 1970s. Although both metals are sturdy, they are also inclined toward corrosion over time, which eventually leads to water contamination, leaks, and busted pipes. For homes built before 1970, it is often necessary to schedule pipe replacement to swap out these outdated materials for modern ones.

There are a number of different materials that plumbers use when repiping parts of a home. Which ones depend on the situation. If you hire the professionals at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) to handle your pipe replacement in Apopka, FL or the surrounding areas, you’ll receive the skilled work necessary to select the right new pipes and install them so you will have many decades of trouble-free plumbing.

The Most Common Types of Pipe Replacement Material

  • Copper: This is the metal that superseded iron and galvanized steel as the new standard for plumbing. Copper is durable, corrosion-resistant, and extremely light, making it easy to work with. Copper also has greater flexibility than steel and iron, making it less likely to break when encountering extra force or strung between two distant supports. In general, copper will outlast most other piping material.
  • PEX: One of the most popular of the different types of plastic pipes used in plumbing, PEX stands for cross-linked polyethylene. It is especially common for freshwater pipes that carry drinking water to taps. PEX is less expensive than copper, does not suffer from corrosion or pinhole leaking (which is sometimes an issue with copper), and can often last for 50 years.
  • CPVC: An advance over standard PVC pipes, some plumbers prefer CPVC (chlorinated polyvinyl chloride) over PEX piping. These pipes are most commonly used for hot water lines because they have a high resistance to heat.

When handling pipe replacement for a home, a plumber will probably use a combination of these materials to complete the job. Normally, copper pipes are used for main lines, and various color-coded plastic pipes (red for hot, blue for cold) branching off to fixtures. Using these flexible materials, plumbers have greater freedom for designing plumbing than they once did, which is a reason that it’s always a good idea to have pipe replacement done during a remodeling, since it permits more options.

If you have a home with aging pipes, or if you have started to notice signs of declining pipes, call Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) for professional pipe replacement in Apopka, FL. We will bring the best technology and skills to any job we do.

Why You Need Professionals to Install Backflow Preventers

October 1st, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

To protect your home’s supply of fresh water, you need to make certain that contamination from the wastewater system doesn’t flow back up the pipes (backflow) and into the freshwater pipes. The device that prevents this from occurring when there is a change of pressure that lowers the water pressure on the freshwater side is called a backflow preventer. Many Central Florida municipalities legally require homes to have backflow preventers for sanitation and health reasons—so the chances are high that your plumbing system already has one installed.

Backflow preventers can fail, however, and they need to have annual inspections from licensed plumbers to see that they are still working properly. If you find out that your backflow preventer is no longer adequately shielding your fresh water supply, you must contact professional certified plumbers to install a new one as soon as possible.

To reach expert plumbers with the experience necessary for installing and inspecting backflow prevention in Winter Park, FL, call Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI). We also have 24-hour service in case of emergencies.

Licensed Plumbers Are Necessary for This Installation

Backflow prevention isn’t a matter of convenience: it’s one of safety. For this reason, you must only entrust the work to licensed professionals. A certified plumber will make certain that the right size of backflow preventer is installed into your plumbing and that it seals correctly so there is no danger of allowing sewage into your freshwater lines. You do not want to risk the safety of your family by attempting to install it on your own, or by hiring a non-certified amateur.

Also keep in mind that in the majority of Central Florida municipalities, non-licensed work on a backflow preventer is illegal. Any backflow preventer that receives low-quality installation from a non-professional will likely fail its next annual inspection. When a backflow preventer fails this test, it must receive immediate replacement. You will save time and money by making certain that you have the work done by licensed plumbers the first time.

Call Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) for Backflow Preventer Installation

Our licensed plumbing team is experienced with numerous types of repairs and installations. We specialize in professional backflow prevention services in Winter Park, FL and the rest of Central Florida. We can handle the inspections, repairs, maintenance, and installations you need. Call us any time and we can answer all your questions regarding backflow prevention.

Here Are Ways to Reduce the Need for Drain Cleaning

September 24th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

When buildup in your drain pipes causes one or more drains in your home to move too slowly, many common household tasks become far more difficult than they should be. The most effective way to remove clogs entirely is by scheduling professional drain cleaning services. Professionals are equipped with the right tools to remove clogs completely and can even inspect for damages using video pipe inspection. But if your pipes tend to need frequent cleaning, you may wonder what you can do to slow down repair calls and keep drain cleaning as part of your annual maintenance visit instead. Here are a few quick tips to reduce the need for drain cleaning.

  • Maintain Your Garbage Disposal: The garbage disposal breaks down food into small pieces so that it can easily move into the drain pipes, preventing clogging. Keep your garbage disposal working as it should by dumping hard foods such as meat bones in separate trash containers, as well as fibrous foods that can wrap around blades and stop the motor, such as corn husks. Be sure to call for repairs at the first sign of trouble.
  • Avoid F.O.G. (Fat, Oils, and Grease): Fats, oils, and grease actually solidify as they cool, which may cause them to become stuck inside of your pipes. You should always pour these items into a trash receptacle instead.
  • Get Rid of Smells: You may not need to call for plumbing repair if you have smelly drains. In the event of a dry p-trap, the curved section under the pipe, you may only need to run the water to get rid of sewage smells. Otherwise, try a solution of baking soda and vinegar.

One of the most important things to remember is that the toxic liquid drain cleaners found in many grocery stores and hardware shops just don’t do the trick. While they may be effective at removing one or two problems, these cleaners cannot dissolve most solid clogs and may damage your pipes. For tough clogs, you need professional drain cleaning from a plumber with the right tools to get the job done. Besides, professional drain cleaning is the best way to prevent major problems from damaging your pipes in the future. For drain cleaning in Oviedo, call Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) today!

Water Heater Repair Question: Does My Water Heater Need Flushing?

September 17th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

Without a working water heater, your dishes would not be as clean, your clothes’ stains might linger, and your showers would be miserable. That’s why it’s important to maintain your unit and keep up with any water heater repair needs that may come up. One major problem that may occur with water heaters is mineral buildup in the tank. But this problem can be prevented if you call a repair technician to flush your heater. So how can you tell your water heater needs flushing?

One of the most obvious signs that your unit may need to be flushed out is a rattling sound inside of the tank. This sound may indicate that sediment has built up inside of your unit and needs draining before it becomes a problem. When you call for water heater repair, the technician will use the unit’s drain valve to empty the water and sediment from the tank. But don’t try this on your own. A rattling sound may indicate something else, such as a problem with the pressure in the tank, and you’ll want a technician to take a look at the pressure valve just in case.

Sediment in the tank may not cause problems as long as you get the unit flushed out early, but rust is a different issue entirely. If you notice rusty-colored water when you turn on a hot water tap, this cannot be solved with a simple flush. This likely indicates one of two problems. The anode rod that prevents rust from building up in the tank may have worn through, meaning you need a simple part replacement that a technician can take care of quickly, but it may also mean the tank is rusting, a problem which usually requires water heater replacement.

Want to avoid these problems altogether? Scheduling regular water heater maintenance with a technician is the best way to do so. During maintenance, a technician will clean and inspect your unit and check for problems such as a rusty anode rod. Your tank will also be flushed, a maintenance step that is recommended every one to three years. But when sediment or other problems in the tank indicates that you need water heater repair in Orlando, FL, call Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) today!

Reasons That You May Need Pipe Replacement

September 10th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

Your plumbing system is made up of fixtures, faucets, and drains that all rely on a complex network of pressurized pipes. Unfortunately, even the smallest change in pressure can affect your plumbing to the point that pipe replacement may be necessary. When leaks threaten your home, you want to fix the problem as soon as possible, which is why it’s imperative that you call a plumbing professional, like the technicians at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) in Casselberry. So why might your pipes need replacement? Is pipe replacement preventable?

If the water pressure changes even slightly inside of your plumbing system, you may need repairs or replacement. One example is the effects of hard water. If you have an excess of minerals in your water supply, deposits may build up along the inside of pipes, changing the water pressure to the point that a pipe may spring a leak. This issue is preventable if you install a water softener at the first sign of hard water.

Another reason pipes may need replacement is if tree roots infiltrate your water or sewer line. Roots naturally grow towards a source of water, so if there is a weak point in your pipes, a root may take hold and work its way inside. If water or sewage leaks into your yard, you may need to schedule pipe replacement services, but your new pipes may offer better protection against tree roots.

Finally, you may need pipe replacement if there are signs that your pipes are older and may soon corrode from rust. While modern plumbing systems are made up of copper or plastic pipes, some older homes may still have pipes made from galvanized steel that can rust through, causing major leaks. If your water is discolored or you notice reddish-brown flakes, pipe replacement may be urgent. If corrosion affects one part of your plumbing system, you’ll probably need to replace all of the older pipes with new copper or plastic piping.

One of the ways to prevent pipe replacement is with regular plumbing repair or maintenance. When you schedule maintenance, a plumber will clean and inspect your entire system to reduce the need for repairs or replacement later on. Whether you need maintenance, repairs, or pipe replacement in Casselberry, call Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) today!

The Fashion of Wearing White and Labor Day

September 1st, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

You may have heard about the fashion faux pas of wearing white after Labor Day. In the present, this tradition is usually treated as old fashioned and a joke. Few people will criticize you for wearing white articles of clothing after the first Monday in September, or even take notice of it except to wonder why it was ever a major concern at all.

Where did this tradition of white clothing going out of fashion after Labor Day come from, and why did it fade away like colorful fabric washed in a hot load in the washing machine?

In general, white makes sense for the heat of summer. Light-colored clothing reflects away the radiant heat of the sun, instead of absorbing it the way dark colors do, so for thousands of years of human history people have preferred to wear white clothing during the hotter months.

However, the idea of white as strictly fashionable during the summer season only emerged in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries—the time when the very concept of “fashion” began to spread across the Western Hemisphere.

It was only the highest level of post-Civil War society in the U.S. that strict and often bizarre rules for fashion controlled whether someone was in with the “in” crowd. Compared to our ideas of what’s fashionable today, the Czars of Style in the 1880s were true despots. Things as trivial as sleeve length could determine whether a woman in high society—no matter her level of wealth—was fashionable or a pariah.

Wearing white during the only summer, when it was common for weddings and outdoor parties, was only of these restrictive society rules. When the U.S. government made Labor Day a federal holiday in 1894, the Fashion Czars gained a definite cut-off point for when wearing white was no longer “acceptable” in the upper echelons of wealthy society.

For many decades, this rule only applied to a small number of millionaire socialites in a few big cities, but in the 1950s it reached general fashion magazines that were read around the country and started to affect more people.

But time eventually broke apart this odd rule, and during the 1970s fashion became more individual. Some fashion legends, like Coco Chanel, also purposely rejected the restriction and wore white throughout the year. Today, the “no white after Labor Day rule” is little more than an amusing gag to tease friends, and almost nobody takes it seriously.

Whatever you choose to wear after Labor Day (and if it’s white, we won’t tease!), everyone here at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) hopes you have a happy end of the summer and great plans for the fall!

Why Install Both Low-Flow Fixtures and a Tankless Water Heater

August 27th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

Most people would love to save money every month on their utility bills, but many do not know that there are some simple ways to do so. Many homeowners waste water and energy with inefficient appliances that increase water, gas, and energy bills. Installing new appliances and fixtures may decrease your bills and help the environment in the process.

Two things you may choose to install in your home to help manage your utility bills are low-flow fixtures and a tankless water heater. In this guide, we’ll detail these items, showing you how they waste less hot water than your current fixtures and how you can save money every month by making a simple change.

Low-Flow Fixtures

If you replace your current showerhead with a low-flow showerhead, or if you install a faucet aerator for your sink, you can save a significant amount on your energy bills, up to sixty percent according to the U.S. Department of Energy. These relatively inexpensive fixtures reduce the amount of water produced per minute, as do low-flow toilets.

Tankless Water Heaters

With conventional storage tank water heaters, water is heated and stored in a large tank. Water fills the tank through a dip tube which leads to the bottom. A burner or electric heating element heats the water, and it naturally moves to the top of the tank where it exits through a smaller pipe. The problem with this type of heater is the standby energy loss that comes with leaving the water heated at all times. A tankless water heater heats water immediately as it passes through, eliminating the need for a tank. When combined with a low-flow fixture, you’ll use significantly less energy and water whenever you turn on a hot water tap.

Other Ways to Save

Installing low-flow fixtures and tankless heaters is not the only way to save hot water. Switching to energy-efficient washing machines and dishwashers can also reduce your bills. You should also be sure to call a plumber for professional repairs at the first sign of water leaks in your pipes. For water heater installation and other plumbing services in Winter Park, save money every month by calling the professionals at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) today!

How Backflow Preventers Protect Your Water Supply

August 20th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

When you turn on a tap in your home, you should see the clear, clean water you rely on for cooking, showering, or cleaning. Access to clean water is expected by most homeowners in Apopka, so we tend not to think much about the quality of our water when we turn on a faucet. However, it’s important to know that your water supply may be at risk for contamination at any time, particularly if a backflow prevention device is not in place or is not tested regularly.

Your water supply is kept at a high pressure so that water can easily flow out of any tap in your home. The sewage system, however, is not pressurized, relying instead on gravity to remove waste from the home. If anything happens to increase the pressure of the exit drain or to decrease the pressure of the water supply, backflow may occur.

Backflow can be defined as the unwanted reversal of flow causing non-potable, or unsafe, water and other substances to enter the water supply. Backflow occurs when the pressure of the non-potable system is higher than the pressure of the potable water. This may happen for any number of reasons including a breach in the mater main or a sewer line blockage.

The best way to protect your water supply from contamination is with a backflow prevention device. Backflow preventers provide an air gap or physical barriers that prevent wastewater from polluting the freshwater. Although there are multiple types of backflow preventers, they generally prevent backflow with check valves that only allow the wastewater to flow in one direction.

Many homes already have backflow prevention devices installed, but these should be tested regularly to check for worn out parts and to prevent sudden failure. Any source of contamination puts your health at risk, so you should allow a plumbing professional to inspect and test this portion of your system during an annual plumbing maintenance visit.

Don’t put the quality of your water supply at risk. For maintenance, questions, or to install a backflow prevention device in Apopka, call on the professionals at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI).

How Hard Water Can Lead to Pipe Replacement in Sanford

August 13th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

Have you noticed a metallic taste to the water from your taps? Is it difficult to work up a lather of soap in the bathroom or kitchen? Have you noticed flaky white deposits along fixtures like sinks and bathtubs?

You probably have hard water in your home.

Now don’t panic…hard water is rarely detrimental for your health. However, it can lead to problems with your plumbing, causing damage to appliances and reducing the volume in pipes. It’s not uncommon for hard water to lead to a need for pipe replacement in Sanford, FL.

Fortunately, you have Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) on your side: we can handle all the plumbing repairs necessary to combat the effects of hard water. And we can eliminate hard water as well with the installation of a whole-house water treatment system. Call us today for help combating problems from hard water.

What is “Hard Water” Exactly?

“Hard water” is water that enters your home from the municipal system that has a high concentration of minerals suspended in it. The most common minerals are magnesium, gypsum, and calcium. It isn’t harmful to drink, although you will notice the taste of the minerals, and it makes it more difficult to develop soap lather.

Why is Hard Water a Problem for My Pipes?

The main trouble from hard water is that it leaves mineral deposits along the inside of plumbing. Imagine the flaky yellow-white material you find on your fixtures building up along the inside of the pipes. That’s what will happen over time due to hard water. As the calcium deposits accumulate, they will reduce the water volume inside the pipe, which will cause a spike in water pressure. If the water pressure rises high enough, it will cause pipes to begin leaking and require replacement.

Is There a Way to Prevent Hard Water?

Yes: a whole-house water softener. These water treatment systems attach onto your water main and add sodium ions to the hard water that enters your home from the municipal system. The sodium ions counteract the minerals in hard water and balance them out. You’ll have “softer” water, noticeably better tasting and no danger to your plumbing. Installing a water softener requires the work of a professional plumber.

If you need to have pipe replacement in Sanford, FL because of hard water deposits, take a serious look into installing a water softener. You can expect more plumbing repairs in the future if you allow the hard water to continue.

Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) offers a variety of whole-house water treatment systems to make sure you have water entering your home that is healthy for both your pipes and you.

Contact us for water testing that will help you find out what sort of water treatment you need.

How Does a Tankless Water Heater Work?

August 7th, 2014 by Anthony Bracco

The development and spread of tankless water heaters has given homeowners the advantage of always having enough hot water to meet their needs. Where the standard storage water heater keeps a standby tank of water ready for use that can run out before more water can heated up, a tankless system is an “on-demand” water heater that heats up water as it is needed, and therefore has no supply that can run out. Tankless systems also use less energy and will pay for their installation after a couple of years.

Despite all their advantages, tankless water heaters will not work ideally for all household. Call the Maitland, FL water heater experts at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI) to schedule an appointment to learn more about how well one of these advanced home comfort system will work for you.

The Operation of a Tankless Water Heater

People often initially find the concept of a water heater without a tank to be strange and hard to understand. But tankless water heaters are not terribly complicated.

The basics of a tankless system is a heat exchanger that transfers heat from a power source (either electric or gas) to the water in the pipes. The exchanger in the tankless water heater turns on whenever water starts to flow through the heater. A whole-house tankless water heater is connected onto the water main, so all water entering the home must pass through the system. Whenever your turn on a hot water tap, water begins to flow and the heat exchanger comes on, heating up the water as you need it.

There is one drawback to this, which you might have noticed from the description: there is a delay between the when the water receives heat from the heat exchanger and when it reaches the tap. For larger houses, the lag can be greater for a tankless water heater than it would be for a standard storage system.

Tankless systems are also available in point-of-use models, smaller units that attach to individual taps. They have little lag time, and in some cases are more cost-effective.

Tankless water heaters need professional installation. When you call up the experts at Modern Plumbing Industries, Inc. (MPI), we will help you determine if a tankless water heater in Maitland, FL, whether whole-house or point-of-use, is a good choice for you based on your hot water needs, the number of people in your home, and your budget plans. We will also assist with selecting the best power source for the system, and then install it so you will receive a steady supply of hot water to keep you and your family comfortable for many years.