Plumbing Maintenance for Spring

As the weather warms up in Erie CO, and more time is spent outdoors, now is the best time to perform plumbing maintenance and inspections that you have been putting off all winter. Think of it as a part of your spring maintenance.

These maintenance tasks will protect your home against plumbing problems and ruin the sunny days to come. Plus, performing thorough tests shouldn’t take too much of your time.

Consider these plumbing maintenance tips to help you get your home ready for spring.

Inspect for leaks

Check the sinks in the laundry room, bathroom and kitchen for drips and leaks. You may also want to look around toilets, drains, showers and bathtubs. If left unaddressed, this may lead to water damage and costly repairs. Call a plumber if you notice visible leaks or any damp spots.

Check sump pump

As the days warm up and the threat of winter snowfalls turns to spring showers, your plumbing system is yet to face another set of challenges – snow and heavy rains. Because of these, the threat of basement flooding increases.

To prevent this from happening, it is important to test your sump pump before the spring thaw to make sure that it is primed and ready for some hard work.

Check outdoors

While performing your spring plumbing checks, you may also want to take the time and effort to check the areas surrounding your home.

Check your outdoor pipes and faucets. Turn on the faucet to confirm that water can freely flow from them. Also, make sure your gutters and downspouts are free of leaves and other debris.

Drain water heater

Minerals like calcium and magnesium can build up on your water heater over time. This can cause corrosion inside the tank and reduces the heating effectiveness of your water heater. Worse, it may even shorten the lifespan of your water heater. The good news is that you may be able to restore at least some of its vigor by draining your water heater.

Spring is a great time to drain and flush your water heater.  This helps gets rid of the sediment from the tank that can cause it to work harder and cost more to use.

If you’re experiencing plumbing problems or you’re worried that you won’t be able to perform spring maintenance on your own, please do not hesitate to call Paradigm Plumbing.

Things to Consider Before Remodeling a Bathroom

If you’ve already made the decision to remodel, then good for you! Remodeling your Erie CO bathroom can be exciting, scary and nerve-wracking at the same time. A lot of people find the idea of undertaking a bathroom remodel a bit intimidating, but it’s all worth it in the end. Not only will it help boost the value of your Erie CO home, it will also go a long way in improving your satisfaction in your home.

Here are 4 things to consider before remodeling a bathroom.

Timeframe

A lot of people think that it will only take a few days to remodel a small bathroom. Yes, you’ll only be working on a limited amount of space, but please keep in mind that the more things you want to change, the longer it would take to complete the renovation.

If you only have one or two bathrooms in your Erie CO home, then you need to make certain adjustments regarding your shower routine.

Know your budget

Before you start looking at tiles, fixtures, and others, you first need to determine how much can spend for this project. This will help guide you as you make decisions about what to include in the remodel.

Choose flooring wisely

Most people assume that they can install any type of flooring material. But choosing flooring for the bathroom is far different than choosing flooring for other rooms in your home. Given that the bathroom is prone to moisture and is always wet, you want flooring that is water resistant and durable. We also recommend choosing a flooring material that is slip-resistant. This is important so as to avoid slip and fall accidents in the bathroom.

Lighting

Proper lighting is crucial to how good your bathroom looks, as well as how well it functions. It doesn’t matter if you have a small bathroom. If your bathroom has proper lighting, it will feel bright and comfortable.

For good lighting, your bathroom needs 4 types of light – task light, accent light, ambient light and decorative light.

Tips to Keep Your Home’s Plumbing in Good Condition

The plumbing system is one of the most important and frequently used systems in your Boulder home. We use it for doing laundry, washing dishes, taking a shower and using the toilet. As a Boulder homeowner, it is your responsibility to look after your plumbing system and keep in top shape.

Here’s what you need to do to keep your Boulder home’s plumbing in good condition.

Repair problems early

Sudden increase in your water bill, slow drain, damp cabinets and leaking faucets are just some of the most common signs of impending plumbing failures. Little problems can eventually lead to a costly plumbing disaster. Keep an eye out for trouble and stay on top of plumbing issues to help keep your plumbing dry and happy.

Keep an eye on your drains

Small bits and pieces of food, hair and other materials may seem harmless, especially if they fall down the drain in small quantities, but they can add up and eventually cause blockage. A simple drain screen will catch them and prevent these foreign materials from going down the drain.

Pay attention to your drains and address the problem as quickly as possible. Don’t ignore a suspected blocked drain. Otherwise, it may lead to expensive repairs and replacements.

Prevent frozen pipes

When outdoor temperatures drop below freezing, the water inside the pipes can freeze. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on your pipes and may cause it burst later on. Being prepared and informed may help you avoid the consequences brought about by frozen pipes.

Frozen pipes are inconvenient and costly to repair. To relieve built-up water pressure in the pipes, let both hot and cold water faucets drip. Also, consider wrapping pipes in the attic, basement, crawlspace and exterior walls with foam insulation.

Take it easy on the garbage disposal

Garbage disposal is an essential part of our everyday life. It makes it easier for us to dispose of leftover food. Unfortunately, it is one of the most abused appliances in the kitchen. Treat your garbage disposal well and it will keep working smoothly for several years.

Avoid dumping fibrous foods such as potato peels, corn husks, celery, broccoli and banana skins. These things can tangle and stop the blades of your garbage disposal. Also, avoid pouring fat, oil and grease down the drain as they can clog the drain and create leaks and back-ups. These simple precautions can extend the life of your garbage disposal.

Warning Signs That Your Main Sewer Line is Clogged

Most Erie Colorado homeowners don’t give their sewer lines much thought until they experience some type of clog. When you have a sewer drain clog, the water comes back up into the household plumbing system; causing messy, costly damage to your home. It also presents health hazards since raw sewage is toxic.

It is important to recognize the signs of a clogged sewer line to prevent plumbing disasters and health problems. Here are some warning signs that your main sewer line is clogged.

Stinky smell coming from your drains

A sanitary sewer should be air tight. Unless there’s an opening or crack in your sewer lines, you’re not supposed to smell sewer odors. If you can smell sewer gas in or around your Erie home, this could be an indication that there is a crack somewhere in your sewer system.

Bubbles, bubbles, bubbles

Toilets that make bubbling or gurgling sound could be an early warning sign of a blockage in your line. Air bubbles may form in your pipes when your sewer line is obstructed. The toilet should be the first place to check for air bubbles since it has the most direct connection with your sewer line.

More than one drain is clogged

A clogged drain doesn’t always indicate a clogged main sewer line. The problem is likely to be isolated to that drain. But if one or more plumbing fixtures are draining slowly or are clogged, there’s a good chance that the problem is in your main Erie sewer line. Bathtub, kitchen sink, toilet, and showers are the usual culprits.

If you notice any of the signs listed above, be sure to have your sewer lines checked and inspected by a professional plumber. Please contact the professionals at Paradigm Plumbing to find out what we can do for you.

Protect Your Home from a Plumbing Disaster While on Vacation


A plumbing problem can happen at any time. Oftentimes, these problems occur when homeowners aren’t around.

Frigid Erie Colorado winters can be hard on your plumbing. A lot of things can happen while you’re away. As such, it is important to take steps to protect your home from a plumbing disaster while on vacation. Here are 3 ways you can avoid a plumbing emergency while you’re away.

Inspect your water heater

Although water heater is an integral part of everyday life, most people don’t pay much attention to their water heaters until something goes wrong.

Before going on vacation, we recommend that you take a look at your water heater and look for rust or leaks. The presence of leaks and rust means that you water heater is compromised. Be sure to have it checked by a professional Erie plumber before you leave so as to prevent plumbing disasters.

Keep the heat on

A lot of people think that they can save money and energy by turning the heat off before leaving for vacation. But with the temperature hitting below freezing during this time of the year, a lack of heating can lead to frozen and burst pipes. When this happens, you may come home to a flooded home. Not a great way to end your vacation, right? Set the thermostat to 55 degrees before leaving town this winter.

Shut off main water supply

Be sure to turn the main water supply off before leaving the house so it won’t pump any water while you’re gone. This is especially important if you’ll be away for an extended period of time. This will be your best protection against a plumbing disaster.

Have someone check on your home

If you are going to be away for an extended period of time, it might be best to ask a family member, a friend or neighbor to check on your house from time to time to ensure that everything is in order.

In most cases, Erie homeowners just ask their designated person to bring in the mail and newspapers. But you also need to take your plumbing into consideration. Ask the person to do a quick walk through the house every time he/she visits. This is usually enough to safeguard your home against an Erie plumbing disaster.

If you want a complete assurance on your plumbing system, have a professional Erie plumber perform a routine maintenance before you leave. Please call Paradigm Plumbing for all your plumbing needs.

Think Twice Before Using Chemical Drain Cleaners

chemicaldrainThanksgiving is undoubtedly one of the most awaited holidays of the year. This day is often associated with good food, great company and lots of fun. But after the Boulder festivities and all your guests have left, you are now faced with a clogged kitchen drain.

This usually happens when people send all the grease, oil, and other food particles down the drain. Determined to address the problem without having to pay for the services of a Boulder plumber, you find yourself in the grocery store looking at those liquid drain cleaners sitting on the shelves.

Sure, you want that drain clog gone, but relying on chemical drain cleaners to address the issue will only do more harm than good. Here are 3 reasons why you should think twice before using chemical drain cleaners.

They’re not guaranteed to work

In the hopes of saving money and wanting to solve the problem fast, a lot of Boulder homeowners choose to bypass the plumber for a bottle of drain cleaner. After all, it seems like a cheap and convenient way to solve the problem. However, there is no guarantee that these products will work. Plus, most of the drain cleaners sold in the market aren’t really cheap. If they fail, then you’ll have no choice but to call a plumber later on.

They contain dangerous chemicals

Drain cleaners are highly toxic. Not only do they contain harsh chemicals, they also emit toxic fumes that may cause eye, nose and skin irritation.

Lye and sulphuric acid are dangerous to swallow. If you have young kids or pets at home, it is best to keep chemical drain cleaners out of your home. Regardless of how careful you are as a parent, the presence of such products inside your home pose immediate danger to them.

They can damage the pipes

As mentioned above, chemical drain cleaners contain harsh chemicals and are highly corrosive. These products claim to quickly clear the drain without having to call a Boulder plumber. Because of the chemicals they contain, they may be able to successfully dissolve whatever it is that is causing the clog. What most people fail to realize is that these products are strong enough that they can damage the pipes. It will gnaw at your pipes and while supposedly cleaning them.

If you are dealing with clogged drains or any other plumbing issues, please call Paradigm Plumbing. You can assure that your plumbing problem will be resolved quickly and efficiently.

Locate Your Main Water Shutoff Valve Before an Emergency Occurs

sutoffvalveFrozen pipes are among the most common plumbing problems during the Colorado winter. This is especially common in pipes that are exposed to extreme temperatures. As water pressure builds up inside the pipe, this causes the pipe to burst eventually.

When this happens, you need to act fast. Otherwise, the floors surrounding the area may become flooded. Depending on the severity and location of the pipe damage, a burst pipe may damage your floors, belongings, and even your walls.

Since the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year for plumbers, it may take a while before a Erie plumber reaches your home. It is important that you know where your main water shutoff valve is located so as to prevent further damage in emergency situations such as this.

Locate main water valve

If you live in a place with a colder climate, you might want to start looking inside the house. The crawlspace, utility room, and basement are good places to start looking. The valve may be located inside your garage, near your water heater, in the basement or in an outside wall in a utility area in your home. Look for where your Erie plumbing enters the home. If you can’t find it inside the house, try to look outside. It should be very close to your water meter. For those who live in warmer climates, the shut-off valve is usually located outside.

Recognize your valve

There are 2 main types of shutoff valves – Gate valve and ball valve. These are the types of valves you will find in most homes in the country.

Gate valves usually last for several years and are very reliable. However, they take a little more effort to close and can become stiff with age. If you find yourself struggling to fully close the valve or require the use of a tool to turn it, consider having it replaced before a plumbing emergency arise.

Ball valves are very trustworthy. Plus, the handles are easier to turn. To close the valve, give the handle a simple quarter turn until it becomes perpendicular to the body. To open, turn the handle until it is positioned parallel to the body.

 

Protect Your Pipes from Freezing in Frigid Weather

Freezing PipesDuring the Colorado winter months, when the temperature drops below freezing in Boulder, pipes that are located outside your home or in unprotected areas become prone to freezing. Any pipe that freezes can burst. Not only is it inconvenient, it can also translate to an expensive repair.

Luckily, you can prevent freezing pipes and costly damage that comes with them by taking some preventive measures. Follow these tips to prevent your pipes from freezing this winter.

Unhook the garden hose

Before the temperature in your Boulder home drop below freezing, we recommend that you disconnect water hose from the outside spigot. This should be a part of your regular seasonal maintenance.

Wicked winter weather can cause your garden hose to freeze. Water inside the pipe expands when it freezes. This puts a tremendous pressure to the pipes and throughout the plumbing system. Eventually, this causes an interior pipe to burst.

Insulate pipes

A lot of people do not realize this, but the pipes in your home also need protection during the winter. Use foam-rubber pipe insulation to protect your pipes from the cold. Even a tiny opening can let enough cold air in, causing the pipes to freeze. Make sure there are no gaps and that the foam insulation fits tightly.

Keep in mind, though, that this alone does not prevent your pipes from freezing. Rather, it just helps in slowing down the rate of heat transfer.

Leave the cabinet doors open

If any of your sink is located against an outside wall, the pipes underneath the sink are at risk of freezing. This is because they don’t insulate really well. Keep your pipes warm by opening the cabinet doors. This will allow the warm air inside the house to get to the pipes under the sink and prevent them from freezing.

Additional preventive measures

If you are taking a trip this winter, be sure to take additional preventive measures to protect your pipes from freezing.

Call Paradigm Plumbing and have a plumber check the system. It is also a good idea to drain the pipes. Shut off the main water supply and then flush the toilets and open all faucets. Let the water flow until the pipes are emptied. This will greatly reduce the possible damage, no matter what happens to your plumbing system while you’re away.

Smart Ways to Prepare Your Plumbing for the Holiday Season

Winter PlumbingOne of the best things about the holiday season is having the chance to spend more time with your family and friends. However, having all those guests in your Erie Colorado home may put a strain on your home’s plumbing system.

A plumbing emergency during the holiday season can throw your chances of bonding with your loved ones and having fun right down the drain. You don’t want a backed up toilet, broken garbage disposal or a clogged sink interrupting your merry celebration.

Prevent this from happening by preparing yourself and your Erie plumbing for the busy season ahead. Here are some smart ways to prepare your plumbing for the holiday season.

Prevent freezing pipes

While your home may be warm on the inside, chilly winds and freezing temperature can present some challenges to your outdoor plumbing. If you live in a cold area, your home’s outdoor plumbing will be at risk of freezing and bursting. To reduce the risk of freezing and burst pipes, it is best to insulate your exposed pipes with sleeves or wraps.

Be mindful of what is thrown into the garbage disposal

Visits from family and friends are welcome during the holiday season. But preparing for a big feast can lead to garbage disposal malfunctions.

Items like fruit peels, celery, carrots, rice, pasta, coffee grounds, egg shells and meat should never be thrown down the garbage disposal. Rather, it should only be used for small particles, not large scraps of foods or any other items that can cause problems.

Provide adequate disposal options

Hosting a holiday get-together is a great way to connect with your family and friends. However, all those guests mean more garbage needing disposal.

A few days before the celebration, make sure that you provide a waste baskets in every bathroom and change the bags as often as needed to prevent guests from flushing items that may clog the toilet.

Keep your plumbing in top condition

Schedule a general plumbing service appointment before the holiday parties. The increase in plumbing use from guests may lead to a plumbing catastrophe. As such, it is best to consult a plumber while you get ready for the holidays.

If your old faucet is on its last leg, have it replaced before the celebration. Also, repairs that have been put off should be fixed. Any leaks should also be taken care of.