Whether it’s clogged drains, backed-up sinks, or a flooded basement, we all have had to deal with some kind of drain blockage that won’t go away. In this article, learn how to fix these issues safely and effectively by using a few simple ingredients and items in your kitchen cabinet.

How Does Baking Soda Unclog a Drain?

Baking soda is a kitchen staple that can work wonders to clean drains that are smelly and clogged. In kitchen drains, common clogs come from fat, oil, and grease. For bathroom drains, baking soda is a great way to clean drains that are smelly and clogged. In kitchen drains, common clogs come from fat, oil, and grease. For bathroom drains, clogs often form from hair and scum from personal products. So before using chemical drain cleaners or disassembling the drain trap, try baking soda to see if it does the trick.

How to Clean a Clogged Drain With Baking Soda and Vinegar

If you’re having trouble getting your drains cleared, you may want to try using baking soda and vinegar. Here are some clogged drain baking soda techniques:

  • Heat Boiling Water

Boiling water can be heated in a large microwave-safe measuring cup or a tea kettle on the stovetop.

  • Pour Boiling Water and Dish Soap Into the Drain

Squirt a bit of dish soap into the drain and slowly pour boiling water down the drain. The dish soap will help dissolve the grease and clean the drain.

  • Pour Baking Soda Into the Drain

Pour one cup of baking soda into your sink or a bucket. If your sink is too small to pour directly down, use a funnel or measure out the amount you need and pour it in.

  • Follow With Vinegar

Pour a cup of vinegar into the drain and then pour a cup of baking soda after it. You’ll see some bubbling. The reaction will help clean your pipes and remove any build-up from the pipes.

  • Flush With More Hot Water

Wait five minutes after the pipes stop fizzing and flush two cups of water through your drain. Use boiling water if necessary to clean it out. If it still doesn’t work, repeat the preceding instructions.

How to Clean a Clogged Drain With Salt and Baking Soda

If the baking soda and vinegar didn’t work, use a clogged drain baking soda technique with salt. Do this at night to prevent any more waste from accumulating.

  • Pour Baking Soda Into the Drain

Add one cup of baking soda to the clogged drain.

  • Pour Salt Into the Drain

Add 1/2 cup of salt to the baking soda. You can let this combination sit in the drain overnight.

  • Flush With Boiling Water

In the morning, heat two cups of water to a boil, then pour this hot water into the sink. 

  • Flush With Tap Water

If the clog begins to release, continue to flush with hot tap water. If not, you may need to repeat the process or try the baking soda and vinegar method. Moreover, if neither works, it is likely that you will need to disassemble the drain trap to clear the clog.

No More Clogged Drains With Custom Plumbing of Arizona 

If using baking soda, salt, and vinegar to break up a clog doesn’t work, you might need to call a plumber. Custom Plumbing of Arizona can help you get the drainage problem fixed quickly and effectively. To find out more about our drain cleaning services, contact us at 602-883-2761.

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Did you know there are ways to keep a grease trap in good working order? In this article, we will give you some tips on how to clean a grease trap effectively! 

Grease traps are a common plumbing fixture found at home and across commercial establishments. These filters trap grease and other debris before it can reach your drains and sinks. As a result, they need to be cleaned regularly. 

What is the Importance of Installing a Grease Trap?

Regular drain cleaning services can keep your plumbing in good shape. Grease traps are extremely important in preventing grease, and other food from ending up in your sewer system. This can cause blockages and flooding, which can lead to costly repairs. Plus, it’s illegal to discharge wastewater untreated into waterways. So, if you have a grease trap installed, clean it regularly and replace the filter if necessary.

How to Clean a Grease Trap?

Grease traps can be a pain to clean, but it’s important to do so on a regular basis. Here are 8 steps on how to clean a grease trap:

  1. Detach the lid from the grease trap gently with a pry bar

    There are grease trap gaskets right under the cover, so proceed cautiously during this process.

  2. Inspect the grease trap’s parts once the lid is removed

    During cleaning, you’ll need to remove and replace parts; to put them back in correctly, you’ll need to know where the pieces are and how to install them. To get better results, creating a diagram of the trap’s interior would be beneficial, which you can consult when re-installation is done.

  3. Insert a wooden dowel or measuring stick into the grease trap

    Allow the grease and oils to mark the dowel by gently guiding it to the bottom of the trap and gently swirling it there. Using this guide, you can determine how much debris is in the trap. This needs to be written down and recorded in a FOG report provided by the EPA.

  4. Use a small bucket to remove any standing water from the tank of your grease trap

    Drain out the excess grease trap water with a bucket or small pump. Set this water aside.

  5. Remove the waste from your grease trap with the small bucket

    Fill the trap with the bucket, then remove the solidified waste. Put the debris in a water-tight container, such as a large plastic trash bag.

  6. Scrape down the lid and the sides of the trap with your bucket

    By doing this, you’ll be able to stop debris that you’ve knocked loose but haven’t yet removed from quickly building up.

  7. Clean the lids, trap sides, and parts with soap and room-temperature water

    Use a steel pot scrubber to eliminate extra trash and odor. Rinse the screens and components with water to get rid of the soap and debris.

  8. Properly reinstall any removed parts and replace the lid

    If you have to remove a grease trap, make sure to properly reinstall any removed parts and replace the lid. Grease traps must be tightly fitted and sealed to work properly, so don’t force anything if it doesn’t seem to fit properly.

Ready To Solve Your Grease Trap Problems With Custom Plumbing?

If you’re tired of dealing with grease trap cleaning, Custom Plumbing of Arizona can help. We offer a variety of services that can help make your life easier, including installing new grease traps, cleaning existing ones, and even providing maintenance services. We’re always here to help; call us at 602-883-2761 today.

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A sagging sewer line can become a serious problem if you don’t fix it. Here’s what you can expect.

One flush. Two flushes. Three flushes. Four.

Once again, you have found yourself standing next to the toilet, pushing the lever and staring as the you-know-what spins round and round but refuses to go down. Don’t worry, it’s not you—it’s your sagging sewer line.

Then again, maybe you should worry. If something is wrong with your sewer line, you know it’s going to be expensive to fix. But just like your clogged toilet, a sewer line belly is not going to go away on its own.

In fact, it might just cause more damage if you let it sit, and that really stinks.

What is a sewer line belly?

A sagging sewer line, or belly, occurs when a dip forms at one or more spots along the sewer pipe. Most sewer lines use gravity to transfer waste from a home to the sewer. The water you send down the drain carries the solid waste down a sloping pipe that leads from your home to the main sewer system. Sometimes, the slope of a sewer line gets disrupted, which prevents the water and solid waste from moving freely to its destination.

What causes a sagging sewer line?

A sewer belly has many possible causes. Sometimes, the soil that supports a portion of the pipe settles, and over time the line begins to sag. Seasonal temperature changes, excessive rain, and poor soil compaction at the time the pipe was laid—all of these factors can contribute to a sagging sewer line. Other times, tree roots slowly push down against the soil and the sewer pipe.

When your sewer line begins to sag, you can expect to experience some common—and often nasty—consequences.

3 Nasty Effects of a Sagging Sewer Line

Clogged Line

When you have a belly in your sewer line, solid waste can become trapped in the low-lying area of the pipe. As you send more and more waste down the drain, the solids can build up until your line is completely clogged.

Backed Up Sewer Line

If your sewer line is totally obstructed, you run the risk of a sewage backing up into your home. As you can imagine, the resulting mess is horrifying and can lead to the spread of nasty bacteria inside your house, which can become a health hazard if it is not properly cleaned.

Sewage Leak

Sagging sewer lines may also crack. When cracks form in your sewer pipe, the waste water can leak into your yard. Even a small crack can lead to big problems because the water that escapes can erode the soil and contribute to more severe sagging, which can contribute to further cracking, and on and on.

How to Fix a Sag in a Sewer Line

Homeowners may be unfamiliar with the fact that sewage waste is often moved using gravity. There are a number of issues that can happen with this type of system, such as sagging. While a sagging sewer line is fixable, the cost may vary depending on the repair method.

Why Sagging Sewer Lines Are a Problem

Sewer pipes are installed with a positive slope, because they are gravity-based and work to push waste away from your home. In most cases, the angle is somewhere around 1/4 inch of drop for every foot of piping. However, if you have limited space, the slope can be as small as 1/8 inch, even though this is not preferable.

A sag in a sewer line, also known as a belly, creates a pool that blogs sewage from being pushed away from your home. Eventually, if the sag is severe enough, it can lead to clogs that block the entire pipe.

Improper soil compaction and natural soil shifting can cause the pipe to sag, which can lead to a significant risk of leaking or breaking.

Dig and Replace Method

The traditional method for replacing a sagging sewer line is known as the dig and replace method. As the name implies, a contractor will dig down into your property until the sagging section of pipe is exposed, then repair the pipe and backfill the trench. In many cases, this method costs about $60 per foot of piping that has to be replaced, but other factors can make it even more expensive. For instance, if the contractor has to pull up asphalt or concert to access the pipe, it can be quite expensive.

Trenchless Sewer Pipe Replacement

Over the years, we have learned how to fix a sag in a sewer pipe using new methods. These methods include in-line expansion and sliplining. These methods usually cost between $40 and $80 per foot and don’t require digging up your property.

How to Fix a Sag in a Sewer Pipe Under the House

In some homes, the sewer pipes are accessible from the basement or crawlspace. Sewer pipes are heavy, so if they are not secured properly to the structure of your home, they may cause the rest of the sewer line to sag. Sometimes this happens when the home slowly settles into the soil.

Homeowners may be able to fix this problem on their own, but in most situations, it is best to hire a trained and licensed professional to avoid causing unnecessary damage.

Should I repair my sagging sewer line?

It may be tempting to put off sewer line repairs when a sag occurs, but homeowners should use caution. When you try to save money by putting off repairs, it can cost you more later, since problems tend to worsen over time.

Want to prevent extensive damage from a sagging sewer line? Get an inspection today!

A sewer line belly is one of the last things you want to experience. For your peace of mind, if you suspect your sewer line may be in trouble, we suggest that you get it inspected.

Let Custom Plumbing of Arizona help you determine if you have a sagging sewer line. Contact us today to get the help you need.

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One of the worst plumbing problems you can face as a homeowner is a slab leak. In some cases, rerouting plumbing after detective a slab leak is necessary to fix the problem and prevent future damage to your home.

Finding the slab leak and repairing the broken pipe can take a lot of time and energy. In some instances, you will have to cut or break the concrete slab itself to access the leaking pipe. It can be expensive, and many times it can go undetected for a long time, causing extensive damage.

Sometimes, it’s too difficult and expensive to access the pipe that is leaking. When this happens, you may need to reroute your plumbing to your attic.

Why are Slab Leaks so Harmful?

These leaks cause temporary damage such as:

  • Cracks in your walls
  • Pools of water in or around your property
  • Mild water damage

However, they can also cause more serious damage:

  • Mold and mildew. They can lead to severe breathing issues and other health problems.
  • Damage to flooring. Replacing your carpet, hardwood floors, or tiles can be costly.
  • Subfloor damage. If the leak went on for long enough, it may have caused damage to your subfloor, leading to an even costlier repair.
  • Soil erosion. When a slab leak washes away all the soil beneath your home foundation, your house is standing on shaky ground. You’ll need to fix it as soon as possible.

How to Reroute Plumbing

If you decide to reroute your pipes on your own, it’s important that you understand the proper way to go about it. Rerouting the plumbing is a complicated, time-consuming task that is best left to the professionals. But if you want to give it a try, here are a few pointers.

Plan the Route Your New Pipes Will Take

You will need to create a plan for installing the new pipes and rerouting plumbing in your home. Where you redirect your plumbing system depends largely on building codes, but many people choose to reroute their pipes above ground to the attic. For colder climates, it’s best to avoid the outside walls to prevent freezing, but we don’t usually have to worry about that in Arizona. To do this, you’ll need to reroute the pipes up through the walls. Be sure to know exactly where important structures like wiring are located so that you can plan the most efficient system.

Use Existing Plumbing Spaces

If you can, try to plan your new route where your old system used to be. It’ll be much more cost-effective to use any existing plumbing spaces instead of drilling new ones in your walls. This will be much easier to achieve if you use flexible plumbing materials instead of rigid ones.

Prepare for Ventilation

If you’re following the areas where your old plumbing system used to be and not changing the location of the lines, then be sure to keep your existing vents intact. But if you’re creating new spaces, you might need to plan to install more vents. Without proper ventilation near your plumbing lines, pipes may not drain correctly or receive enough airflow.

Plan for Future Access

When rerouting plumbing in your home, you may want to consider installing panels in places that you might need access to in the future. It’s best to place these panels in areas that are inconspicuous if you are worried about how it is going to look. You might consider an area behind a door, or even inside a closet to make it less noticeable.

Turn Off the Water Supply

You might think that I don’t really need to mention this, but you would be surprised. We have had to clean up plenty of messes because someone tried to DIY and didn’t really know what they were doing. So, before you begin rerouting your plumbing, be sure to turn off your main water supply valve.

Install Your New Pipes as Planned

Now that you’ve got a plan, it’s time to reroute your pipes. Are you confident in your abilities to do it the right way the first time? If not, you really should let the professionals take care of it for you.

4 Tips to Consider When Rerouting Water Lines in a Slab Foundation

If you’ve ever had to dig up a slab foundation, you know that the procedure can be tricky. This section gives you 4 tips to consider when rerouting water lines in your basement. Read on for more information!

When it comes to slab leak rerouting, every case has a different solution. One major obstacle to fixing a slab leak is determining how to make the repair. There are many different methods and you must consider if your intended fix will be cost-effective and reliable for years to come.

During rerouting, a professional will examine the slab to identify the origin of the leak. They will then stop any more water from escaping before abandoning the leaking pipe and laying down a new section above ground, routing it through the walls or your attic.

If your house has more than one story, plumbing must be connected in an advanced way by a skilled team of professionals.

When rerouting water lines in a slab foundation, it’s important to consider the best way to route the plumbing lines and adequately protect them from damage. Let’s go over some tips for how you can do that.

4 tips to consider when rerouting plumbing lines

When you have a slab foundation, it is important to make sure that the plumbing lines are routed properly. Here are some tips to consider when you are rerouting your pipes:

Route Through an Existing Path

In order to properly reroute a water line, you must first determine the best route in your home. If you want to avoid extensive concrete construction, rerouting through an existing path in the walls, or through a space like a laundry chute, may be your best option. Modern plumbing employs new materials, such as flexible pipes, that can fit in even small, winding spaces.

Build a Wall Chase

A wall chase is essentially a fake wall that hides your plumbing. If you cannot fit your plumbing through an existing path, this is another option you should consider. Wall chases can extend across multiple levels, so they are also an option for multi-story houses. Going with this choice does require a bit of construction, so keep that in mind when you weigh your options. It might take longer and add costs to the project.

Go Through the Attic

When you are considering rerouting a water line in your slab foundation, it is often a good idea to go through the attic. If you are not sure where to start, consult with an experienced plumber.

Other Options

If none of these options sound like they will work for your situation, you may need to consider some other creative solutions. You should consult with a plumber who is experienced with slab leaks and plumbing rerouting so you can learn what options are available to you.

Rerouting Plumbing Can Be Difficult. Get the Professional Help You Need!

Give us a call at 602-883-2761 today if you want to learn more about how Custom Plumbing of Arizona can help you reroute your home’s plumbing system. We are experts, and we’ll do it right the first time.

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An emergency water heater leak can cause massive headaches if not repaired quickly and completely. Take these steps immediately if you notice your hot water heater is leaking.

On average, traditional water heaters last about 10 years. Tankless water heaters typically work 18 years without major problems. While those time frames might sound reassuring, even the most reliable water heater will leak now and then, and that can mean serious damage for your home and your personal property if the leak goes unchecked for too long.

Imagine what dozens of gallons could do to your home. The destroyed flooring, the increased chance of mold infestation—nothing good comes from a leaking water heater.

Here are the steps you need to take if you discover leaking water coming from your water heater.

What To Do When You Have an Emergency Water Heater Leak

  1. Turn off the water supply.
  2. Turn off the power supply.
  3. Clean up the water.
  4. Locate the leak.
  5. Get professional help.

 

1. Turn off the water supply.

On your water heater, you should notice a valve that controls the cold water intake line. The first step you need to take when you have an emergency water heater leak is to cut off the water supply. If there’s no water going into your unit, no water will come out.

Be sure that the valve is completely closed before proceeding.

2. Turn off the power supply.

Next, turn off the power supply to your unit. For many gas models, turning off the power is as easy as flipping the on/off switch on the heater. In some cases, you may need to find the breaker switch that controls your water heater. If you have the manual to your unit handy, refer to it before trying to turn it off.

Once you have turned off the power supply, you will be able to clean up the water, find where the water is coming from, and assess any damage.

3. Clean up the water.

Standing water can increase your risk of slipping and injuring yourself as well as your risk of electric shock. It is always best to clean up the water that has leaked before trying to find and repair a leak. For this step, a wet/dry vacuum, towels, and a dehumidifier will be useful.

4. Locate the leak.

An emergency water heater leak usually occurs at one of a few common locations on your unit—the water lines leading in and out of the heater, the pressure relief valve, or the drain valve. If you can locate the leak, you will be able to determine your next steps, which may include calling a professional plumber.

5. Get professional help.

In some cases, you may be able to repair your water heater yourself. In others, you may need to reach out to a professional so they can make an assessment. If you can’t figure out what is causing your leak, your best course of action is to find a plumber you can trust.

Your emergency water heater leak can’t wait. We won’t make you.

Not sure how to fix your leaking water heater? Get in touch with the experts at Custom Plumbing of Arizona. Schedule your appointment today.

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