Sometimes a home’s plumbing has to be replaced. Wondering what is involved in repiping a house? This article explains.

Unless your home is a cabin in the woods with no running water (or if you live—to quote the late, great Chris Farley—in a van down by the river), you are going to have to deal with plumbing issues at some point. For some, that means fixing a leaky pipe or two. For others, that means having their entire plumbing system replaced.

In either case, a plumber will come to your home to:

  • Complete an inspection.
  • Make recommendations and provide an estimate.
  • Get to work on your plumbing.

To be clear, replacing your home’s plumbing is not a DIY job. You are going to need a professional, licensed plumber to handle this project. Are you thinking of repiping your home? Here’s what’s involved in the process.

Inspection

If you are unsure what kind of work you need to be completed, you don’t need to worry. The first step in the repiping process is an inspection conducted by a plumbing professional, who will listen to the problems you have been having and look for signs of the kind of work you need to be done. Without a thorough inspection, you can’t know what is involved in repiping a house.

Recommendations and Estimate

Once your repiping specialist finishes the inspection, they will give you their recommendations. Depending on the age of your home, the layout of your plumbing, your needs, and any other relevant details, they will recommend the best course of action, including which materials are best for your situation and what work is most urgent. You may need to replace everything or only a small section.

It is critical to think about how much you are willing to risk your home if you decide to only do a small section or to repipe your home bit by bit. It may help you budget to cover the costs, but if your pipes are at risk of failing, it could save you money in the long run to do the entire project at once.

You should also expect an estimate for the work that is to be done. Most plumbing companies, including Custom Plumbing of Arizona, offer a free estimate to give you an idea of the cost.

The Work of Repiping a House

Once you accept the estimate, it’s time for the professionals to get to work. If you watch even for a few minutes, you will see first-hand what is involved in repiping a house—and it’s a lot! From locating the pipes behind walls and in ceilings to demolition and installation, they do it all.

Good plumbers will take care to protect your home from any possible water damage during repairs, placing plastic sheeting over furniture and moving family possessions when necessary.

Want more information on what is involved in repiping a house? Talk to the plumbing experts at Custom Plumbing of Arizona

Get in touch with Custom Plumbing today if you are interested in receiving a free estimate for your home repiping project.

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These simple plumbing tips could help you take care of your home and prevent damage. Read on to learn our suggestions for first-time homeowners who want to be prepared for anything to do with plumbing.

Buying your first home is such an exciting experience. You finally get to do things your way without worrying about causing damage to someone else’s property! But with homeownership comes lots of responsibility, too.

Before you get settled, take a look at these simple plumbing tips so you can be ready for anything that comes your way.

Our Simple Plumbing Tips for First-Time Homeowners

  1. Know Where the Shut-Off Valve Is

Perhaps the most important tip, knowing where your home’s main shut-off valve is could save you from serious damage to your property in the event of a burst pipe. Many times, it will be inside your home close to where the meter is located. Every home is different, though, so you may need to look around or refer to your home’s plans.

  1. Know How to Turn off the Water Supply to Appliances

Appliances that use water also have shut-off valves. In case you ever need to replace these appliances, you will need to know how to turn off the water supply. Check behind the appliance and look for the water supply line—the valve will be attached to it.

  1. Use Your Plunger for More than Clogged Toilets

Plungers are good for more than unblocking your toilet. You can also use them for clogged sinks and drains. Before using harsh chemicals on your pipes, try a plunger. It could prevent damage that requires expensive repairs.

Just, uh…be sure to use a different plunger for each job.

  1. Familiarize Yourself with the Signs of Hard Water

Do you know how to spot hard water? Speaking of spots, if you notice deposits on your dishes after you run them through the dishwasher, you might have hard water. Hard water is caused by high concentrations of calcium and magnesium, which can build up on the inside of your pipes and cause serious damage.

Other signs include dry skin and lusterless hair, low water pressure, and soap scum.

  1. Keep a Plumbing Kit Handy

If you want to be ready for a plumbing emergency, it’s important that you have the right tools at hand. Keeping a plumbing kit in your home can be the difference between a simple wet floor and damaged hardwood.

Your kit should include:

  • Plunger
  • Duct tape to temporarily fix leaks
  • Towels
  • Flashlight
  • Screwdrivers
  • Adjustable wrench

You should also keep a trusted plumber’s contact information nearby in case of a serious problem.

Need more than simple plumbing tips for your plumbing problem? Custom Plumbing of Arizona can help!

There you have it! Now you should be ready to take on the challenges of homeownership, at least from a plumbing perspective. Here’s to the future of your home!

Get in touch with Custom Plumbing of Arizona for help with all your plumbing needs.

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Curious about how to get rid of biofilm in pipes at home? This guide will walk you through the process.

Have you seen it? That slimy goo around your shower drain might seem like nothing more than a gross annoyance. After all, sometimes drains and plumbing fixtures just get…nasty. Right?

If you want to know the truth, though, if you let that slippery substance go for too long, it could end up being hazardous to your health. Why? That stuff is known as biofilm, and it’s not as innocuous as you might think.

How to get rid of biofilm in pipes: What is biofilm?

Biofilm is a collection of organic substances, composed of many types of bacteria and their waste products. Aside from posing a risk of clogging your pipes if you neglect the problem too long, biofilm is also known to carry the pathogens responsible for ear infections, Legionnaire’s disease, salmonella, E. coli, and so many more awful ailments.

The best way to avoid getting sick from biofilm is to prevent it from happening in the first place.

How to Prevent Biofilm

Biofilm forms naturally anywhere there is stagnant moisture. While there are ways to remove it once it has formed, it is often easier to prevent it from forming in the first place. To prevent it from invading your plumbing fixtures and pipes, keep the areas around your drains and near your fixtures dry. After using them, be sure to dry them off to keep the nasty stuff from building up.

If you already have a biofilm problem, not to worry! There are ways to remove it.

How to Get Rid of Biofilm in Pipes

Remove Hair and Debris Blockages

Biofilm loves to form in hard-to-reach places. Perhaps one of the most secretive places for organic buildup to find a home is hair and debris inside your drains. If you have ever pulled a half-foot of hair from your shower drain, you know exactly what it looks like. Once you remove these blockages, however, much of the biofilm comes with it.

Clean the Areas Near Your Drains

Biofilm also loves to congregate on surfaces that surround your sinks and drains. The reason for this? These spaces are often left wet and receive their fair share of bacteria from things like teeth brushing and shower run-off. If you want to stop biofilm from forming inside your pipes and causing a blockage, stop it at its source by cleaning the spaces that lead to your drains.

Clean after Cooking

The kitchen sink is especially prone to biofilm buildup because of the food waste that finds its way there. If you want to learn how to get rid of biofilm in pipes, the first thing you need to know is to stop leaving your dishes for later. Just do the dishes right after you finish eating, and your problem could go away.

Want to learn how to get rid of biofilm in pipes? Custom Plumbing of Arizona is here to help.

Now that you understand the danger that biofilm can pose to your health, it’s time to start cleaning. Need help with a troublesome drain? At Custom Plumbing, we specialize in drain cleaning and other plumbing services. Get in touch with us today to schedule a home visit.

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Want to learn how to clear a drain blocked with fat? If you have been dumping oil and grease down your kitchen sink, here’s what you need to know about fixing this common problem.

Everybody knows not to pour grease and oil down the kitchen sink. If you didn’t, you have probably learned a pretty valuable lesson by now—sending fat down the drain can be a pain. Why? Because now your drain is clogged and smelly.

It doesn’t happen overnight, but if you have been doing it for a while, it can lead to a total blockage. Lucky for you, we know exactly how to solve this (surprisingly common) problem.

Here are a few things you should know.

DIY: How to Clear a Drain Blocked with Fat

Hot Water and Soap

If the grease buildup in your drain isn’t severe, you may be able to clear it up by simply running soapy, hot water down it. Soap breaks down the bonds that make fat and oil congeal, so allowing them to mix can slowly wash the fat buildup away.

Want to try to avoid fat deposits in your plumbing in the first place? Besides disposing of grease and oil in the garbage, you can also squeeze some dish soap down the sink directly after you allow fat to go down the drain. Now, this doesn’t give you license to dump oil in the sink whenever you want, but it can help to minimize the damage if you forget.

Caustic Cleaners

Caustic cleaners are designed to dissolve even the toughest blockages. For drains that are completely clogged or only drain after a long time, this might be a good option. You should keep in mind, however, that these kinds of cleaners are so powerful that they can damage your plumbing, so be sure that you know how your system will react before using them.

How to Clear a Drain Blocked with Fat Safely: Call a Plumbing Expert

It is possible that you will not be able to unclog your drain on your own. When you have tried everything you can think of without success, it’s time to call the plumbing experts. Not only do plumbers have knowledge and expertise that you don’t have, but also they have special equipment. What might have been an hours-long process for you may only take a few minutes for a plumber.

And a plumber won’t just fix your problem for you. They will offer you some advice that will help you prevent another clog from happening in the future.

Get in Touch with Custom Plumbing of Arizona Today

Have you been trying to clear your fat-clogged drain with no success? The longer you wait to fix it, the worse the problem is going to get! Custom Plumbing of Arizona can make your nasty clog go away. Don’t know how to clear a drain blocked with fat? All you have to do is contact us to schedule an appointment and we’ll send someone to help.

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Does your home sit on a post-tension slab? If so, a slab leak could be difficult for you to fix. This article explains why a post-tension slab leak is a challenging repair job.

Slab leaks are one of the most involved plumbing repairs that we handle at Custom Plumbing. When your home is built on a post-tension slab foundation, though, things get even more complicated.

Why? Well, we’ll get to that.

First, let’s explore what this type of slab foundation is, how to tell if your home has one, and why you should never cut through it to fix a plumbing issue.

Not sure if your home has this type of foundation? Here’s what you need to know.

What is a post-tension slab?

The purpose of a post-tension slab is to reduce building costs in areas with expansive or otherwise poor soil conditions. The idea is that this type of foundation spreads the weight of the home over a larger area. Whereas a regular slab puts most of the weight on footings, a post-tension slab puts some of the weight on the slab itself.

How to Identify It

If you are unsure whether your home falls into this category, there are a few ways to tell. Look for these signs before doing any repairs under the slab:

  • Look for a stamp in the concrete that identifies the post-tension slab (usually near the garage door or another easily noticeable location).
  • In older homes, check for an identifying sign attached to the wall in the garage.
  • If no signs are visible on your home, you can also check your home’s building plans.
  • You may also be able to see signs of a post-tension slab on the outside of your foundation. Look for circular concrete patches about two to four feet apart.

Once you figure out what type of foundation your home has, you should still wait to start work on a slab leak. Here’s why.

Never Cut This Type of Slab

Some leaks under a home’s slab require cutting through the slab to access the broken pipe. You should NEVER cut through a post-tension slab. The reason is that you could damage or sever one of the cables running through the concrete. Doing so could risk the integrity of the foundation and possibly even cause one of the cables to rip through the foundation and seriously injure someone.

Instead, a trained professional will need to do this to repair a leak.

Tunneling to Repair a Post-Tension Slab Leak

To repair this type of plumbing problem, you will need a professional to tunnel underneath the slab to access the damaged pipe. There are actually some benefits to fixing the problem this way. You won’t damage any of your home’s floors. You won’t lose access to your home while repairs are being completed. By tunneling, you won’t risk introducing mold to the interior of your home.

Think you might have a post-tension slab leak? Stop procrastinating and call us.

Get in touch with us if you have any questions. We are happy to speak to you about what you are experiencing.

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