What causes pinhole leaks in copper plumbing anyway? This is what you should know and how you might be able to prevent it.

The ceiling sags slowly, the bulge forming over days, and when you finally notice and decide to do something about it—SPLASH—it has dumped all over your entertainment system. Taking a closer look at the ceiling, you see a tiny leak spouting a thin stream of water out of your copper pipes.

Could that pinhole leak really cause that much damage? Absolutely. All it needs is time.

What causes pinhole leaks in copper plumbing?

Hard water and unbalanced pH are the most common causes of pinhole leaks in copper pipes. When your home’s plumbing system has hard water running through it, calcium and other minerals tend to build up and corrode the inner lining of copper pipes, eventually wearing through in places. Likewise, if your water is too acidic or basic, the water within your plumbing can slowly eat away at the pipes.

Additionally, any abrasive materials, such as sand and dirt, that move through your pipes can wear down the copper on the inside of the pipes. Over time, the pipes can wear thin enough to spring a leak.

Can you prevent leaks from happening?

Depending on the age of your home’s plumbing, you may be able to prevent leaks from forming. If your pipes are only a decade or two old and you have only had one or two pinhole leaks form, you may be able to minimize the damage they sustain from mineral deposits and unbalanced pH.

First, have a plumber test your water for hardness and pH. Once you know for sure what the problem is, then you can implement a solution. For instance, if you have hard water, you can install a water softening system to reduce the presence of calcium and other minerals that cause damage to pipes. If your water is too basic—i.e., it falls above a seven on the acidity scale—a water softener will also address this problem.

For acidic water, you may need to consider installing a filter with calcium carbonate to neutralize the acidity. Another common solution that homeowners use to fix pH imbalances and hard water is to install a reverse osmosis filtration system. Reverse osmosis pushed the water through a semipermeable material to filter everything out except for the water.

Don’t know what to do about the pinhole leaks in your plumbing? We can help.

What causes pinhole leaks in copper plumbing? If you have had to fix more than a few pinhole leaks in your home’s plumbing, it’s time to find a real solution, not just put a bandage on a systemic problem. We are here to help you diagnose and fix your plumbing problems. Get in touch with Custom Plumbing of Arizona today to set up an appointment. We’ll send one of our plumbing experts to your home as soon as possible.

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What size tankless water heater do I need for my home? If you are thinking of replacing your traditional water heater with a tankless model, this article offers a quick guide to finding the right size.

Investing in a tankless water heater can save you money and ensure you never run out of hot water again. Unlike traditional water heaters, tankless models produce hot water on demand so you only heat the water that you are going to use. They also have longer lifespans, which helps to justify the higher purchase and installation costs.

Before you get started, however, you need to be sure the unit you are buying is going to be able to keep up with your demand. Depending on how many people live in your home, the number of water sources you want to produce hot water, and some other factors, some tankless water heaters may not be able to meet your needs.

Here’s how to figure out what size your tankless water heater needs to be.

  1. Determine the Number of Hot Water Sources You Need

How many showers and sinks do you have in your home? Do you need hot water for laundry? The first step in finding the right size for your home is to determine how many hot water sources you want for your home. You should also think about how many sources you want to be able to run at once without losing heat.

  1. Calculate the Flow Rate

The next step is to calculate the flow rate for each of your water sources. The flow rate varies depending on the source—for instance, a kitchen faucet generally produces less water than a shower. Faucets typically produce between one and two gallons per minute, while showers are usually over 2 gallons per minute.

To get an accurate reading so you don’t accidentally undersize your tankless water heater, you may want to consider running a test on each hot water source in your home using a bucket and stopwatch.

What size tankless water heater do I need? Let us help you get the optimal size for your needs.

  1. Know Your Temperature Rise

Depending on the temperature of the water entering your home, your tankless water heater may have to work harder. In the Phoenix area, the groundwater temperature is between 57-62 degrees. In general, hot water for use in the home is between 105 and 115 degrees. Make sure that your tankless unit can handle the necessary temperature rise before making a purchase or you may end up with a unit that is too small.

Contact Custom Plumbing of Arizona to Learn What Size Is Right for You

Do you have questions about replacing your current water heater with a tankless model? We are here to help you determine the best size for your needs. Get in touch with Custom Plumbing of Arizona today so we can start working on a solution.

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How often should a wax ring be replaced on a toilet? It’s a simple question, but don’t be fooled. Things can get complicated. Here’s what to know.

Every toilet in your home has a wax ring connecting it to your plumbing, which creates a waterproof seal to keep what goes down to the sewer from seeping out the sides. This piece of equipment usually lasts as long as the toilet, about 30 years. However, if it dries out and starts to crumble, you could be at risk for a messy leak.

At that point, it’s time to install a new one.

 

Installing a New Wax Ring

You should be able to find a replacement at any hardware store. Before beginning, you will need to have the proper tools nearby:

  • A putty knife
  • A bucket and towels in case of a leak
  • A wet/dry vacuum
  • A wrench that fits the hardware of your toilet

Here’s how to replace your toilet’s wax ring.

 

  1. Disconnect the water supply.

To disconnect the water supply to your toilet, turn the water lines leading from the wall to your toilet to the “off” position. After doing that, flush the toilet to get as much water out as possible. You may want to have a wet/dry vacuum handy to remove any water that remains in the tank and bowl. Otherwise, you will need to use a towel. Once all the water is out, disconnect the water supply line from the bottom of the tank.

 

  1. Remove the toilet.

Next, remove the toilet. Take off the caps covering the bolts at the base of the toilet, then unscrew the bolts using an appropriate wrench. You should now be able to rock the toilet loose from the old wax ring. Once it is free, lift the toilet and set it out of the way.

 

  1. Scrape off the old wax ring.

Using a putty knife, start scraping away the wax on the flange, the pipe that connects to the toilet, as well as the bottom of the toilet. If the flange looks damaged, you should call a plumber before continuing as the new wax ring may not seal properly.

 

  1. Install the new wax ring.

Make sure you follow the instructions on the packaging of your new wax ring and proceed to install it. Once you have it in place, gently put the toilet back where it was, aligning the bolt holes on the toilet with the bolts in the floor.

Once the toilet is in place, close the lid and sit down to use your weight to finish the seal. Gently move your weight around to ensure a complete seal. The toilet should be flush with the floor when finished.

 

Need help with your toilet? Custom Plumbing of Arizona is here to help.

Not sure you have the know-how to fix your toilet on your own? That’s not a problem! Get in touch with us today and we will send a plumbing expert to your home as soon as possible.

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Looking for emergency plumbing repair in Phoenix? Custom Plumbing of Arizona has you covered. These services are essential in an after-hours crisis.

Emergencies don’t wait for a convenient time to occur. Plumbing problems can happen at any time, and if you leave them till the morning, they could cause thousands of dollars in damage to your home and your personal property.

Why Custom Plumbing of Arizona Offers Emergency Plumbing Repair in Phoenix

From the day Custom Plumbing of Arizona was founded, our goal has been to be as helpful as possible. We understand the frustration that even simple plumbing problems can cause. Your home or business is a part of you, so any damage that occurs can feel devastating.

As one of the leading emergency plumbing repair companies in the Phoenix area, we feel a responsibility to be there for our customers.

Common Plumbing Problems That Require Immediate Attention

Burst Pipes

A burst pipe is one of the worst things a homeowner or business owner can experience. The amount of water that a burst pipe often lets loose is more than enough to cause damage to flooring, furniture, and even irreplaceable personal items.

If you have a burst pipe, it’s critical to act fast and turn off the main water supply before the damage becomes substantial.

Sewer Back Up

When your sewer backs up into your home, your health could be at risk, not to mention your peace of mind. The cause of a sewer backup is often a poorly maintained sewer line, which can deteriorate, allowing tree roots and groundwater to infiltrate the system.

Water Shut-Off Failure

As mentioned above, the water shut-off valve is an essential safeguard against excessive water damage. But what happens if your water shut-off fails? For instance, if the valve has become corroded, it might be impossible to operate, which could allow hundreds of gallons to gush into your home.

What to Expect from Our Emergency Plumbing Repair Services

When you experience one of these or another plumbing emergency, it can be a relief to know that you have a plumber you can depend on to fix the problem as soon as possible.

We are proud to offer emergency plumbing repair in Phoenix and the surrounding areas. When you contact Custom Plumbing of Arizona, you can rest assured that we will take care of you and work until the problem is resolved. We will send one of our plumbing professionals to your home or business quickly and work to stop the damage from spreading before we assess the issue and provide a quote. If possible, we will begin work right away.

Get Emergency Plumbing Repair in Phoenix Now!

If you find yourself dealing with a leak at night or any other time, you can count on Custom Plumbing of Arizona to be there for you.

Protect your property. Contact us now for emergency plumbing repair in Phoenix!

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Slab leaks are among the most serious plumbing issues we deal with at Custom Plumbing. Are slab leaks dangerous, though? Here we explore why this common, expensive problem could actually put you in danger.

Perhaps you have noticed that your water bill has gone up. Maybe the basement has started to smell damp and moldy. Whatever sign makes you realize that you might have a slab leak under your foundation, it is critical that you fix it before it becomes more than a cause for concern for your wallet—you need to repair it because it could put your health and safety at risk.

Why Are Slab Leaks Dangerous?

Slab leaks can be dangerous for two primary reasons: respiratory reactions caused by mold infestation in the foundation, and structural damage to the foundation that results in unsafe living conditions.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these issues.

Health Concerns

Clean air is important to have in the home. You spend a lot of your time there, especially if you work from home, as so many continue to do during the pandemic. When you have a slab leak, dampness can penetrate your foundation, which can lead to mold growth if left untreated.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, mold in the home can cause mild to severe respiratory problems. These symptoms can range from moderate allergic reactions—for instance, red eyes, stuffy nose, and itchy skin—to more serious reactions, such as intense asthma symptoms.

When exposure is limited, these reactions are manageable, but when you have to deal with them every day, they can become dangerous.

Structural Damage to Your Home

The foundation is perhaps the most important structural element in your home. When you have a ruptured pipe beneath your foundation, the soil often erodes or expands and contracts more than it would normally. These changes in the soil can cause the slab foundation beneath your home to sag, crack, and crumble, which can weaken the integrity of the entire structure.

Homes that were built around 30 years ago often have plumbing problems beneath the foundation because of the copper pipes that were commonly used in construction. These pipes often burst because copper is relatively soft compared to the materials used today. If your home was built in the 1980s and you notice any signs of a slab leak, it is time to call a plumber who specializes in slab leak detection and repair.

Don’t Let a Slab Leak Endanger Your Family or Home

Are slab leaks dangerous? You bet they are.

Are you worried that you have a slab leak that is causing damage to your home’s foundation? It’s time to stop waiting for things to get better on their own. At Custom Plumbing of Arizona, we have the knowledge and tools that you need to find and fix your slab leak problem. Get in touch with us today so that we can talk about your needs.

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