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Tuesday, September 29 2020
7 Plumbing Tips You Need to Know

Plumbing. It’s not something you think about in your day-to-day life… until something goes wrong. Then, it can become your worst nightmare.

That’s why we at Barner Murphy believe people should have some basic knowledge about their plumbing. To that end, we’ve compiled a few plumbing tips you need to know to minimize stress and headache.

1. Know What You Can and Can’t Flush

The only thing you can safely put down your toilet is toilet paper. Don’t throw trash of any kind into your toilet. Even “flushable” wipes may not be good for your plumbing.

2. Avoid Using the Drain as a Garbage Can

Garbage disposals can’t handle things like bones, coffee grounds, grease/oil/fat, or large food debris. These can get stuck in blades or clog the pipes. Read your garbage disposal manufacturer's manual to know exactly what your drain can take.

3. Know Where Your Shutoff Valves Are Located

Any time you need to make plumbing repairs, you’ll want to turn off your water. Thus, you should know where your main shutoff valve is located. In some cases, it might be outside.

4. Get a Quality Plunger

A small investment in a quality plunger can go a long way in saving you money and stress with basic clogs in your toilets, drains, and sinks. Your plunger will help you dislodge these clogs and get back to normal with ease. They’re especially useful in minimizing messes when dealing with sink trap clogs.

5. Use the Vacuum for Hard Objects

Sometimes, a hard object — such as a toothbrush — finds its way into one of your plumbing fixtures. Plungers will worsen this issue by shoving the object deeper in. In this case, you’ll want to use a wet-dry vacuum to suck out the item.

6. Address Leaks ASAP

Drip, drip, drip. It’s more than a minor annoyance — it could be a substantial “drain” on your wallet. Studies have shown that those tiny drops coming from your leaky sink could waste up to eight gallons of water a day.

And it’s worse for toilets: a running toilet can run through 200 gallons of water a day!

And neither of these include potential future problems caused by leaks that’ll be much more costly.

Check for leaks regularly and fix them as soon as possible. If you aren’t comfortable doing so, call a plumbing professional.

7. Watch For Pipes When Doing Home Improvements

If you aren’t careful during a home improvement project, you might hammer a nail or drill a hole into your pipes. Before commencing any of these projects, determine if there are any pipes behind the areas on which you’ll work.

Running into plumbing problems in Bucks County, PA? Don’t hesitate to call Barner Murphy. Our professionals will work fast to identify and fix the problems so you can escape your plumbing nightmare and get back to normal life. Call us today!

Posted by: AT 09:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, September 14 2020
How Much Does a Water Heater Cost to Install? (2020)

Most people can now take hot water for granted. So when your heater suddenly fails, you really notice it. You’ll want to replace your heater fast.

Whether you’re replacing your water heater or buying a new one, pricing can vary depending on the water heater type. Below, we’ll discuss the different types of heaters and their relative costs.

Electric vs. Gas Water Heaters

Electric Water Heaters

Electric water heaters are cheaper upfront than gas heaters — running you about $500 for a 50-gallon tank heater. Plus, they’re safer than gas heaters and friendlier for the environment.

However, they tend to cost more in energy over time. Plus, you lose hot water if you lose power.

Gas Water Heaters

Gas water heaters cost more initially, but it’s cheaper to use them. You don’t have to worry about losing hot water during a power outage, either.

That said, gas heaters can cause more harm to the environment due to their fuel source.

Tank vs. Tankless Water Heaters

Tank Water Heaters

Tank water heaters are much more common, less expensive, and easier to install than their tankless counterparts. 

They work by storing and heating several gallons of water constantly, though. That means they use more energy and wear out quicker than tankless heaters.

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless heaters have a more intensive setup process (involving new electrical wiring), leading to higher installation costs.

But the large investment comes with some advantages: tankless heaters use a lot less energy than tank heaters and last up to 20 years. 

Energy-Efficient Water Heaters

Here are some water heaters that can minimize harm to the environment.

Solar Water Heaters

Solar water heaters are tank heaters that heat your water using the sun’s rays. There are two types of solar heater systems:

  • Active systems — Pumps water into your home. Usually costs around $3,000.
  • Passive systems — Uses natural convection to provide your home with water. Usually costs around $2,000.

Most solar heaters have traditional heaters just in case.

Indirect Water Heaters

Indirect heaters draw on your furnace or boiler’s heat to heat your water. Because of this, indirect water heaters are quite energy-efficient.

However, they also have a fairly hefty $1,500 price tag.

Is My Water Heater Failing?

Here are some signs your water heater might be failing:

  • Leaks
  • Loud noises coming from heater
  • Slow-heating water or water that doesn’t heat
  • Discolored or funny-tasting water

Also, it may be time to replace your water heater if it’s 15 years old or older.

How to Pick a Water Heater

Here are some guidelines for picking a water heater:

  • Home size — Larger homes need larger heaters. A two-person home could do with 30-40 gallons, while a four-person home could step up to 50-60.
  • Energy usage — Some heaters might cost more but pay for themselves in energy savings.
  • Fuel type — Make sure the fuel your potential water heater uses is available. For example, if it uses natural gas, make sure your property has or can get a natural gas line.

When Should You Call a Plumber?

Replacing a water heater on your own is a long and tough job. You should call a professional plumber like Barner Murphy if your water heater is showing signs of deterioration or if it breaks down unexpectedly. We’ll work fast and efficiently to make sure you can continue to enjoy hot water in your home. Contact us today!

Posted by: AT 10:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Barner Murphy Inc. - Bucks County - Plumbing
7204 Hibbs Lane, Levittown, PA 19057 | Phone - 215-945-8560

Licensed Master Plumbers
PA HIC #035743 NJ #10388 RCC LIC # 413

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