Searching for a “plumbing inspection near me”? Here’s the answer to “what is a plumbing inspection” and why you might want to schedule one.

When it comes to your home’s plumbing system, it’s important to keep it in good working order. One way to do this is by scheduling a plumbing inspection. But what is a plumbing inspection, and why should you get one? 

In this article, we’ll answer those questions and provide some critical reasons why you should consider scheduling a pipe inspection.

What is a Plumbing Inspection?

A plumbing inspection is a thorough examination of your home’s plumbing system. This includes checking the pipes, fixtures, and appliances that make up your system to ensure they are in good working order. A plumbing inspection can be performed by a professional plumber or a home inspector.

During a plumbing inspection, the inspector will check for issues such as leaks, blockages, and faulty pipes or fixtures. They may also test the water pressure and check for potential hazards, such as gas leaks.

Why Should I Schedule a Pipe Inspection? 3 Critical Reasons

There are several reasons why you should consider scheduling a plumbing inspection. Here are three critical reasons:

Buying or Selling a Home

If you are in the process of buying or selling a home, a plumbing inspection can be extremely beneficial. When you buy a home, you want to know that the plumbing system is in good working order and that there are no hidden issues that could cause problems down the road. A plumbing inspection can give you peace of mind by identifying potential issues so you can address them before closing the home.

On the other hand, if you are selling a home, a plumbing inspection can help you identify any issues that need to be addressed before putting your home on the market. This can help you avoid any delays or problems during the sales process.

Preventing Plumbing Emergencies

Plumbing emergencies can be stressful and costly. By scheduling a plumbing inspection, you can identify potential issues before they turn into emergencies. This can save you time, money, and a lot of headaches.

For example, if a plumbing inspection reveals a small pipe leak, it can be repaired before it becomes a major problem. On the other hand, if the leak is not addressed and grows, it could cause significant damage to your home and require much more extensive and expensive repairs.

Protecting Your Home from Damage

Plumbing issues can cause significant damage to your home. For example, a leaking pipe can lead to water damage, which can ruin your home’s walls, floors, and other structural elements. A plumbing inspection can help identify potential issues before they cause damage, allowing you to address them before they become a bigger problem.

Are There Different Kinds Of Plumbing Inspections?

Yes, there are two main types of plumbing inspections: visual inspections and camera inspections.

Visual Inspection

A visual inspection is exactly what it sounds like–a visual examination of your plumbing system. During a visual inspection, the inspector will examine your pipes, fixtures, and appliances to look for any visible signs of damage or issues. This can include checking for leaks, rust, or any other visible problems.

Camera Inspection

A camera inspection is a more in-depth examination of your plumbing system. During a camera inspection, the inspector will use a specialized camera to examine the inside of your pipes. This allows them to see inside the pipes and identify potential issues that may not be visible during a visual inspection.

A camera inspection is a non-invasive method of examining your plumbing system, which means that it does not require any digging or destruction of walls or floors. This makes it a convenient and cost-effective way to get a comprehensive look at the state of your plumbing system.

Call “The Drain Whisperer™” Today!

Is your plumbing up to par, or do you have more questions about what is a plumbing inspection? Don’t take any chances–schedule a plumbing inspection with Custom Plumbing of Arizona today! Our team of experts will thoroughly check your pipes, fixtures, and appliances to ensure everything is in good working order. 

Contact us at 602-866-2665 to book your inspection and get peace of mind. Act now and protect your home from unexpected plumbing issues.

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If you’re a homeowner in Arizona, it’s important to be aware of the potential for slab leaks. These leaks can cause significant damage to your home’s foundation, increase your water bill, and disrupt your daily life.

 

In this blog, we’ll explore just how common slab leaks are in Arizona, what causes them, and how to recognize the warning signs. We’ll also discuss the importance of getting professional help when it comes to leak detection and repair, and why Custom Plumbing of Arizona is the right choice for all your plumbing needs. 

How Common Are Slab Leaks?

Slab leaks are more common in certain regions of the country, and Arizona is one of them. The hot, dry climate in Arizona can cause the soil beneath the foundation of a house to shift and move, leading to cracks in the slab. These cracks can allow water to seep through and cause a leak.

 

The state’s soil, which has a high clay content, is a major challenge for houses. This causes the ground to expand when it becomes wet and then shrink when the moisture evaporates. As a result, houses suffer damage to their pools, driveways, roads, and foundations that can be costly to repair.

 

According to The Arizona Geological Survey, clay-containing soil can expand up to a thousand percent when water is added. As such, structures may be damaged if the soil expands by as little as five percent. This is because soils typically have other minerals mixed in with the clay, which reduces expansion. However, soils that are high in silt quickly lose their structure and experience what is known as hydrocompaction when wet. This can lead to cracks in foundations.

Are Arizona Homes Built on Slabs?

In Arizona, many new houses are built on slabs that are designed to resist the effects of soil expansion and contraction. To do this, builders often install steel cables in the slab before pouring the concrete and then apply tension to the cables once the concrete has been set. This helps to prevent cracks from forming in the slab due to soil movement. 

 

However, not all homes have this type of reinforced foundation, and even homes with reinforced foundations can still be susceptible to damage. That’s why it’s important to be aware of potential warning signs of foundation damage, such as stair-step cracks in the foundation walls, leaning chimneys, and cracks and gaps around doors, windows, and drywall. Arizona Foundation Solutions recommends keeping an eye out for these signs and seeking professional help if you notice any of them.

What Causes Slab Leaks?

There are several factors that can contribute to the likelihood of leaks in a slab. As mentioned, the climate and type of pipes used can play a role. In addition, other factors that can exacerbate the problem include:

  • Poor installation of pipes
  • Tree roots growing into the pipes
  • Wear and tear on the pipes over time
  • Changes in the water pressure in the pipes
  • Home is old
  • The foundation was built incorrectly

Know the Slab Leak Warning Signs

It’s important to be aware of the warning signs of a slab leak so you can address the issue as soon as possible. Some common signs include:

  • A sudden increase in your water bill
  • The sound of running water when all faucets are turned off
  • Wet or damp spots on the floor or foundation of the house
  • Cracks in the walls or foundation of the house
  • A change in the water pressure in your faucets or shower

If you notice any of these warning signs, it’s important to call a professional to assess the issue and determine if you have a slab leak, and assess the repair cost.

Get the Leak Detection Help You Need with Custom Plumbing of Arizona

Now that you have an idea on how common are slab leaks in Arizona, if you suspect you have one, it’s important to get the leak detection help you need as soon as possible. 

At Custom Plumbing of Arizona, we have the tools and expertise to quickly and accurately locate and repair slab leaks. Our team of experienced plumbers will work with you to minimize the disruption to your daily life and get your plumbing back to normal as soon as possible.  Contact us at 602-866-2665  to learn more.

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Having a water softener in your home can be a great way to improve your water quality. But in order for a water softener to work properly, it’s important to set it to the right hardness level. In this blog, we’ll take a look at what should your water softener hardness should be set at and why it’s important to get it right.

 

What Should My Water Softener Hardness Be Set At?

The hardness of water is measured in grains per gallon (GPG), parts per million (PPM), or milligrams per liter (MG/L). The average hardness of the water in the United States is about 60 GPG, but the range can be from 0 to over 400 GPG. Water is considered “hard” when it has a high concentration of minerals, such as calcium and magnesium. 

 

You can find your water’s hardness level by looking at the concentration levels:

  • Anything less than 75 mg/L is considered soft;
  • Anything between 76 and 150 mg/L indicates that the water is moderately hard; 
  • Anything between 151 and 300 mg/L indicates that the water is hard; 
  • And anything above 300 mg/L indicates that the water is very hard.

 

A basic rule of thumb is that the hardness level of water should not exceed 120 to 170 mg/L, which equates to around 7-10 grains per gallon of water. Whether you get a lab test or do it yourself at home, the hardness level can be determined by an accurate water analysis report. You can request this information from your city’s water department or purchase one independently.

What Happens If You Incorrectly Set a Water Softener?

A water softener will work more efficiently when properly set. For example, if the water comes from a municipality, it might already be softened. There is no need to apply a water softener in this case. If the hardness level is too high, the softener will waste a lot of water and consume more energy. 

 

The four parameters for setting up a water softener are frequency, time, length, and salt dose. A fundamental step in setting up a water softener is regeneration (typically where you center settings).

Regeneration cycle

A water softener regenerates cycles at different frequencies. For example, it might regenerate once or seven times per week if the water doesn’t harden after a cycle. A general understanding of how much water your softener can process, the cause of your mineral buildup, and the size of your tank can help you select the right frequency for you.

Regeneration cycle time

Water softening systems are designed to cycle in batches, so setting the regeneration time is essential. Because the system will not produce softened water during the scheduled regeneration period, select a time when water is not being used. Moreover, the process might be noisy and go on for hours. For best results, set a regeneration cycle at a time when demand for water usage during that time is low.

Regeneration cycle length 

You can set the length of your water softener’s regeneration cycle. The default cycles take between 30 and 60 minutes to complete. That time frame is reasonable for most households and leaves you with soft water while also taking up a small amount of your time each day. 

Salt Dose

There are a few steps when finding the correct salt dose for your water softener. First, refer to the specifications from the manufacturer. Then, once you have a recommended setting, run the softener through a manual regeneration cycle. 

 

Then, measure the hardness of your water. Once you set a new salt dose to reach your desired hardness level, run an additional cycle and measure the hardness once more to make sure it is at your desired levels. Remember that extremely hard water may require extra salt to maintain sufficient softening levels. 

How to Change Your Water Softener Settings

Make sure the “hardness” setting on your water softener is the same number as the hardness measured in your supply of water. For example, if your water hardness reading were 12 GPG, the “hardness” setting would be “12”. Therefore, it’s best to set the hardness setting on your water softener 4 points above the amount of hardness in your water (plus 4 for every ppm of dissolved iron).

 

The hardness number measures the number of minerals your water contains. The higher this number, the more you have to adjust your water softener’s settings.  For example, if you already have 1 PPM of iron in your water and need to increase the hardness number by 2, set it to 4. Also, an older water softener might require a slightly higher hardness setting as its resin degrades over time. 

 

Electric water softeners typically work by regenerating the number of times a specific resin needs to regenerate. This resin can automatically or manually set the number on more basic water softeners.

Need a Plumber in Phoenix Today?

If you live in Arizona and are still determining what your water softener’s hardness should be set at, contact Custom Plumbing of Arizona for expert advice and assistance. Our experienced plumbers can help you choose the optimal hardness setting for your water softener to ensure that your water is free of hard minerals and impurities. 

Reach out to us today at 602-866-2665 to learn more and get your water softener set up correctly.

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How often should you have your sewer lines cleaned? When your sewer lines are clogged, they cause a lot of problems. From plugged toilets to clogged sink drains and less-than-pleasant sewer smells, it’s worth catching the issue early on. Luckily, you can prevent this problem by having your sewer pipes cleaned periodically. But how often should you have this done? Let’s find out!

Home and Business

Commercial and residential pipes require different levels of cleaning. Commercial lines should be cleaned every 18 to 22 months because they are used more often than residential ones, which should be cleaned every 3 to 5 years. Businesses that are high-risk due to their heavy drain usage should make sure their commercial sewer lines are clean, like restaurants and hotels.

 

People with septic systems can go a long time before getting their septic systems cleaned out, but it’s still a good idea to have this done every few years. You should ensure to get this done at least every two years if you own a large house and have a big family, as you would create more sewage waste in the interim.

 

Causes of Sewer Line Blockages

Sewer lines that are clogged or backed up can have many different causes, including:

  • Tree and plant roots

Believe it or not, you can be at a greater risk for backed-up sewer lines if you live near a tree. This is because the cracks in your pipes created by the roots or tendrils from the tree will quickly become more significant problems that can break your lines. This is a potential problem, especially for trees on residential property.

  • Sagging pipes

A sagging pipe, also known as a bellied pipe, occurs when the moist soil around an underground pipe changes its position. Over time, the pipe can begin to sag in the unsupported area. The sagging line will start to collect sewer waste and blockages. The first sign of a sagging pipe is usually a slow drain or a backup in your home’s plumbing.

  • Grease

Grease can build up in your pipes and cause them to clog. Doing things like pouring oil down the drain might seem like a good idea, but it can solidify and clog your pipes. Residential drainage lines should be hydro-jetted around once a year, while grease traps should also have routine maintenance.

Warning Signs Your Sewer Line Needs to be Cleaned

Here are some signs that your sewer line requires a deep cleaning:

  • Sewage is leaking from your drain, bathtub, sink, or toilet.
  • Plumbing is making bubbling or splashing noises.
  • Water can back up and flood other parts of your home using equipment like a dishwasher or washing machine.
  • Recurring blockages.
  • Slow drain.
  • Unpleasant odors.

 

Routine Sewer Line Cleaning and Video Inspection

Video inspection and routine sewer line cleaning can help you stay informed about the state of your home’s plumbing system. If you’re buying a house, find out detailed information about its plumbing history, how recent repairs have been done, and what to expect. Then, protect yourself against saggy pipes by following a regular maintenance schedule. In general, it’s recommended that homeowners should schedule 18-month sewer line cleanings.

 

Give us a Call to Schedule Your Plumbing Appointment Today

How often should you have your sewer lines cleaned? Custom Plumbing of Arizona offers sewer line cleaning services to keep your home or business functioning properly. Our team of experts will assess your needs and recommend a schedule for cleaning your sewer lines. Contact us today at 602-866-2665 to learn more about our services.

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What is biofilm in drain pipes? You likely don’t think of your sink or bathtub drain as a home for living creatures, but drains, in fact, often attract bacteria and other microbes. Ever seen scum build up in a drain and clog it? That’s biofilm! Biofilm is made of layers and layers of micro-organisms that have been living undetected under your roof–that is, until the biofilm starts clogging the drains, which occurs when it mixes with debris like hair and soap.  

In this article, we’ll explore what causes biofilm to form, how it can affect your pipes, and how you can keep it from happening in your home or business.

What is Biofilm in Drain Pipes?

Biofilms are groups of microorganisms that form colonies on surfaces, resulting in a thin, slimy film. You might have encountered biofilm while clearing a hairball from your shower drain. Biofilm can also form on your faucet or the inside of your sink drain pipes. Some examples of organisms that produce biofilm include but are not limited to:

  • Bacteria
  • Fungus
  • Algae
  • Protists 

What Causes Biofilm?

Now that we know what biofilm is, let’s take a look at what causes it to form. Biofilm is formed when bacteria create a sticky, extracellular polysaccharide matrix that binds bacteria to a surface.

You can imagine a single bacterium clinging to the inside of a pipe. As it multiplies,  these microbes get stuck to each other until there’s a large colony. But, of course, it takes a specific kind of environment for these bacteria to stick, such as a moist one like in a bathtub or shower.  Ever seen a ring of film around the drain? That’s biofilm!

Is it Bad for Your Health?

Now you’re probably wondering if the biofilm is dangerous for humans. Indeed, the bacteria and other microbes contained in biofilm can be hazardous to your health.

There are a lot of bacteria and fungi in your environment, and most of them aren’t good for you to come into contact with or consume. For instance, imagine having a lot of bacteria hanging around your home and cluttering your living space. What’s even more frustrating is that these types of bacteria can’t be seen!

One study shows that biofilms on medical implants can grow and cause infections when they enter the body.

Luckily, there are two good pieces of news. First, biofilm can be treated. Second, not all biofilms are harmful. Some can be beneficial and put to good use, such as in the utilization of biofilm for treating wastewater and cleaning up gas and oil spills.

How to Remove Biofilm from Your Drinking Water

  • Water Filtration

One way to remove biofilm in drinking water is through water filtration systems. You might think of a filter pitcher you put in the fridge, but there are much more sophisticated and robust ways to do this.

A whole-house water filtration system filters all the water in your home. This provides peace of mind, knowing that the biofilm and other contaminants are gone.

  • Pipe Jetting

If you want to make sure your drinking water and drain pipes are always clean and fresh, consider having a professional come out and clean your pipes. This process is known as “pipe jetting/cleaning” and allows you to have freshly cleaned pipes without completely replacing them throughout your home.

  • Whole Home Pipe Replacement

If your old pipes are worn and damaged, it’s time to replace them. You can expect this to happen more frequently in older homes than newer ones, but if you need a complete replacement, you’ll need to hire a local plumber in your region.

Contact Custom Plumbing of Arizona for Biofilm Removal

What is biofilm in drain pipes?  If you have noticed a foul smell coming from your drain pipes, it may be due to the presence of biofilm. If you are experiencing any issues with your drain pipes, contact Custom Plumbing of Arizona at 602-883-2761 for professional assistance.

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