Watch for Water Line Breaches after an Earthquake

April 11th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Earthquakes are a serious concern here in Southern California, and in Laguna Hills, water lines can often be breached following a significant temblor. As the ground shifts, rocks below ground might move, sinkholes could form, and other pressures may be placed on your pipe that weren’t there before. The good news is that there are plumbing services in Laguna Hills with experience repairing water line breaches. The bad news is that breached water lines are usually located below the ground, which means you need to look for subtle signs rather than expecting it to announce itself. Here are a few tips to help you watch for water line breaches after an earthquake.

  • No water
    This is the most obvious sign that something is wrong. If you turn on the faucet or flush the toilet and no water comes back, you likely have a serious breach with the line.
  • Puddles
    Another good sign that you have an underground breach is the appearance of mysterious puddles of water in your yard. Check your year and other parts of your property such as the basement after an earthquake to make sure those puddles aren’t forming.
  • Odors
    A bad odor can indicate a breach in the sewer line, but also a fracture or a back-up in the water line as well. If you small something strange emitting from your kitchen sink or other pipes, it’s time to take some action.
  • Sounds
    You may hear running water in a nearby storm drain or even in parts of your home, despite the fact that there’s no apparent source of the water. That’s usually a good sign that you’re looking at some serious problems.

If you spot water line breaches after an earthquake, call the experts at Saddleback Plumbing for help. We work in Laguna Hills, water lines are a part of our service, and we know how to move quickly when there’s an emergency. After an earthquake, the first thing you need to do is secure your family and your valuables.  We can be a major part of that, especially in the event of water line damage. Give us a call today and let us show you what we can do!

How to Address Leaks in Bathroom Plumbing

April 4th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Leaks are a sad inevitability in most homes. No matter how well maintained your plumbing system is, sooner or later, you’ll have to deal with a breach or a leak. This is especially true with bathroom plumbing, which sees the heaviest use and often experiences the most damaging leaks. Here in Irvine, bathroom plumbing doesn’t undergo the same pressures as it might in colder climates, but seals and connectors can still wear down, as can the pipes themselves in the most extreme cases. Here’s how to address leaks in bathroom plumbing.

Detection is key, which means you should always look out for signs of drips or water running where it shouldn’t. Check under your sink for drips and puddles on a regular basis, and look for signs such as odd noises and gurgling sounds for those pipes that aren’t readily visible. Once you spot it, shut off the water to that section of your plumbing if you can. If you can’t, simply take care not to use the fixture or appliance in question, most bathroom plumbing fixtures don’t have constantly running water, so refraining from using the sink or shower until you can get the leak addressed will prevent the water from puddling up in inappropriate locations.

In a few cases, you can treat a leak yourself with epoxy or a similar sealant. In most cases, however, you should contact a qualified plumber to deal with the leaks. He or she can replace the damaged component, tighten the loose fittings and otherwise address the leak in a substantive fashion. More importantly, most reputable plumbing repair services offer a guarantee on their work, which means you won’t need to worry about the leak returning anytime soon.

Professional plumbing repairs in Irvine is offered by the professionals at Saddleback Plumbing. We stand by our work with guaranteed services and proudly cite our affiliation with reputable groups such as the Plumbing Heating & Cooling Contractors as proof. Most importantly, we know how to address leaks in bathroom plumbing with courtesy and care. Pick up the phone today and give us a call. You’ll be glad you did!

Benefits of Hydrojetting in Drain Cleaning Services

April 3rd, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Hydrojetting is the practice of using high-pressure pulses form a specialized hose to clear out clogs and build-up in your plumbing. The practice entails specialized equipment and requires a trained plumber to operate (you’d be surprised how much damage a little water can do), but it’s become a staple for drain cleaning services. If you have a clog or a build-up issue, hydrojetting may be the best way to deal with it. Here a short list of the benefits of hydrojetting in drain cleaning services in Trabuco Canyon.

  • Thoroughness
    Snakes, cleaners and similar solutions may only deal with a single clog, or even just part of a clog. Hydrojetting is designed to clear the entire pipeline, getting rid of not only the clog in question, but also any other clogs that may be building up along the line. That provides extremely good value for the money, as well as keeping the problem at bay for some time to come.
  • Safety
    Chemical cleansers can be quite dangerous, especially if they interact with something unexpected down in the drain. Hard items like plastic toys or even organic components can interact poorly with the cleanser and create toxic fumes. While hydrojetting can be dangerous if used by inexperienced personnel, at the end of the day, it’s just water, making is a safe and environmentally friendly solution as well as an effective one.
  • Efficiency
    Hydrojetting can cut through just about anything, including tree roots and mineral deposits. At the same time, it does its job without damaging your pipes at all: the pressure involved is calibrated so that your system can handle it perfectly. With hydrojetting, there’s never any question of whether the problem is getting dealt with.

Here at Saddleback Plumbing, we understand the benefits of hydrojetting in drain cleaning services. More importantly, we have the training and experience to do the job right. If you live in Trabuco Canyon, drain cleaning will eventually be a part of your home plumbing maintenance.

Give us a call today and schedule your next plumbing repair for your Trabuco Canyon home with Saddleback Plumbing. Let us make sure that the job gets done right.

Effects of Sea Air and Water on Plumbing

March 28th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

When it comes to getting plumbing installed in your home, the residents of San Juan Capistrano and other coastal towns face a unique series of challenges. The proximity of the pacific means that salt water becomes more of an issue than it might further inland, and while our civic filtration systems do a good job, it remains a concern. Salty air, too can create problems with your plumbing, since it has a higher salt content than air in inland communities. Plumbing service experts in the area need to be aware of the effects of sea air and water on plumbing in order to help correct the issue. Here’s a brief primer on the specifics involved.

Metal of all sorts is vulnerable to corrosion, which is facilitated when water and air interact together on the metal. A chemical reaction oxidizes the metal and creates rust, which breaks it down and ultimately requires its replacement. The salt in sea air and water speeds up this process, making it more difficult to keep the system maintained and resulting in a constant battle against the elements. These conditions tend to affect stainless steel, iron and brass more than other forms of metal.

The good news is that plumbing pipes tend to be made of rust-resistant material as a matter of course, and while that can’t stop the increased rate of corrosion, it can at least slow the process down. Copper has been used in ship design for centuries because it resists the process of corrosion, and PVC and other forms of plastics also make a strong bulwark against the forces of nature.

The bad news is that corrosion still happens, even with plumbing systems formed from materials. Starting with the initial plumbing installation in San Juan Capistrano, residents should keep an eye out for signs of corrosion and other effects of sea air and water on plumbing. When you spot them, call on the experts at Saddleback Plumbing for help. We can replace corroded parts quickly and professionally, as well as providing advice on how to keep your plumbing safe from the effects of sea air. Give us a call today to set up an appointment, and let us show you what we can do!

3 Reasons to Install a Water Treatment System

March 21st, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Here in Irvine, water treatment systems are a natural fit for homeowners interested in quality water. The system filters out minerals and impurities for your whole house, providing cleaner clearer water for all manner of activities. Irvine’s civic water treatment system does a reasonably good job, but considering our proximity to the ocean and the high mineral content of our semi-desert soil, a water treatment system makes a lot of sense. And that’s far from the only benefit. Here are 3 reasons to install a water treatment system in your home, demonstrating the advantages that such a system provides.

  • Healthier drinking water
    By filtering out impurities, a water treatment system provides tastier and healthier water not only for drinking, but for cooking as well. You can see objective evidence of this by performing a little experiment. Fill an ice cube tray with tap water, then a second tray with bottled water (ie., filtered water) from the store. When the ice freezes, you’ll be able to see the difference in clarity and crispness, a fact that will translate in terms of taste.
  • Softer clothes
    Hard water can be tough on clothes, even when you run your laundry on the gentle cycle. Filtered water helps them feel softer and more comfortable to wear, as well as keeping the colors brighter and ensuring that the clothes last longer.
  • Better showers and baths
    Chances are, you can find hard water build-up on your shower or faucet head: a crusty white deposit that can clog the shower if you let it persist. Imagine that same build-up pounding on your skin as you bathe. It’s not dangerous, but it can leave your skin feeling raw and irritated, as well as a little filmy when you’re done. Filtered water is much gentler on your skin, and helps disperse soap scum as well to eliminate that film you may feel at the end.

For more reasons to install a water treatment system, or to discuss other plumbing services in Irvine offered by a qualified professional, give Saddleback Plumbing a call. We’ve had many years of experience serving the people of Irvine, water treatment systems are standard for us, and we’re ready to give you the best possible treatment in all a stages of the operation. We’re eager to show you what we can do, so pick up the phone and contact us today!

Why Schedule Heating Repair Services Now

March 20th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

We’re coming to the end of another winter, and while no one cries too hard for us here in sunny So Cal, we’ve still had our share of cold nights. Area furnaces and heaters have seen regular use, and with the weather growing warm again, that use is dropping as we focus on our air conditioners instead. Ironically, that makes the best possible time to plan for heating repair service from a trained professional. Here in Laguna Hills, CA, heating systems can be repaired by the same companies, but why should you schedule heating repair services now? In short, because there is no better time.

Not every problem with your heater announces itself with a full-bore breakdown. In many cases,  the problem simply leaches energy from your system. It still runs, but it costs you more in monthly costs than it should and increases wear and tear on the system overall. Not only are you paying more every month than you need to, but the chances of a more serious repair issue increase every  day the initial problem goes unsolved. You might not be able to fix it during the winter, when the eater may see use every day, but with temperatures rising, your unit can afford to be out of action for a day or so in order to handle it.

In addition, that reduced need gives you the flexibility to schedule repairs at your leisure instead of scrambling to react to an immediate problem. We all lead busy lives and increased flexibility can be a boon when juggling your schedule. The spring is the best time to make these plans, before the needs of your air conditioner take center stage.

If you know why you should schedule heating repair services now, the next step is to call the experts at Saddleback Plumbing to help. We professionally handle heating system repairs in Laguna Hills with the same high levels of quality that you’ve come to expect. Give us a call today to set up an appointment and let us show you what we can do!


Plan for a New Heating Installation before the Fall

March 12th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Heating season is winding down and our heaters are slowly being turned off in favor of our air conditioners. AC issues tend to take a front-row seat here in sunny Southern California, but we still need our heaters during the winter months. If you have an older heater and are thinking about replacing it, you may want to plan for a new heating installation before the fall. When it comes to heating installation, Ladera Ranch CA has the resources to help you out, and you can get it done well before the next chilly day arrives.

As heaters age, they become less efficient, which can result in higher energy bills each month and an increased need for repairs to boot. In many cases, these kinds of issues aren’t enough to cause your heater to stop: it just costs you more to operate it, a sort of “installation tax” you have to pay until the unit gets replaced. Good maintenance can keep those issues at bay, but the longer your heater goes on, the more likely it is that you’ll need to have it replaced.

And when you do, it’s far easier to do it before the fall than in the middle of heating season. An old heater with a lot of problems is just asking or a breakdown. If you wait, you run the risk of a serious heating repair or replacement issue in the middle of heating season when you need it to function the most. That means a lot of scrambling, emergency service calls and general discomfort as you scramble to get the new unit online as quickly as possible. Contrast that with a spring or summer installation, which you don’t need your heater and have the luxury or planning it during a time when your schedule is free.

If you want to plan for a new heating installation before the fall, then the experts at Saddleback Plumbing are here to help. We can set up your heating in Ladera Ranch, CA, which is part of our service area, and we’re dedicated to your complete satisfaction. Give us a call today to set up an appointment. You’ll be glad you did!

Plumbing Repair Problems Caused by Earthquakes

March 7th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Here in Irvine, plumbing repair services must handle all manner of emergencies, from leaky pipes to ruptured water heaters. Repairing your home plumbing caused by earthquakes, however, are often the most extensive and require the most work. Earthquakes can shift the ground, which can wreak have on water mains and sewer lines as well as the plumbing within your house. Luckily, we haven’t had a major earthquake in a while, but the longer we go, the better the chance that the next one will be huge. Proper preparation and an understanding of what earthquakes can do to your plumbing will serve you well when the next temblor hits.

The concern usually isn’t with the earthquake itself. The concern is what happens with the damaged components, which can cut off service to your house, wrench off their fittings and even cause leaks or flooding crawlspaces and other hard-to-reach places in your home. This is more than a nuisance; in an emergency, it can actually be a source of danger. This comes on top of ancillary plumbing concerns such as the release of unlit gas when your water heater is damaged.

A plumber can usually correct the problem, depending upon the extent of the damage and the wherewithal to make repairs. In some cases, it will involve wholesale replacement of all or part of your plumbing system. In others, only minor repairs may be needed. But whatever the issue, it’s important that you contain the damage first before calling in a repair service. Shut off all water to your home with the main valve, and turn off the gas as well. Then call in a service technician to inspect the property and determine the extent of the damage.

Plumbing services in Irvine can be handled by Saddleback Plumbing. We can handle all manner of plumbing repair problems caused by earthquakes and can even help you with preventative measures such as emergency earthquake shut-off valves for your gas lines. You never know when the next quake will hit, but you can ensure that the right people are on the ground to help you afterwards. Our trained experts are standing by, so don’t hesitate to give us a call!

How Does a Sump Pump Work?

March 6th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

Sump pumps tend to be more of a staple on the East Coast, where heavy rains and flooding are more of a problem here in Southern California. Nevertheless, our recent rainstorm has demonstrated that we’re not immune to such concerns and here in Rancho Santa Margarita, sump pump technology can be a lifesaver. So how does a sump pump work? And more importantly, why should you consider one for my home?

The sump pump is typically placed at the lowest point in the home: a basement or similar location. A hole is dug and the sump pump is placed inside of it. When the rains arrive and flooding begins, the water naturally moves into the sump pit first. A float activator or a pressure sensor in the pump detects the presence of the water and activates the pump. The motor turns on and activates the impeller, which is like a fan. The impeller pushes the water to the sides of the pipe, which creates a vacuum at the center of the pipe. The vacuum pulls he water up and out of the house through a venting pipe.

You can choose between several different types of pumps, most of which run on electricity. (They usually run on a standard plug, so you don’t need any additional equipment to power them.) The cheapest models are pedestal sump pumps, which sit on a pole above the pit and use a pipe to pull the water in. They’re less expensive than other sorts of pumps, but they’re noisier and more obtrusive. Submersible pumps sit inside the water, which serves as a natural muffler. They use waterproof casing to keep their components dry and tend to operate more efficiently.

If you know how a sump pump works, then the next step is to contact an expert to discuss which model might be best for you. At Saddleback Plumbing, sump pump technology and other plumbing services in Rancho Santa Margarita are just some of our many specialties. We can discuss the specifics with you before installing the right model for your home. Give us a call to set up an appointment today. You’ll be glad you did!

Why Mechanized Snakes Work Better Than Over-the-Counter Snakes

February 25th, 2014 by Bill Chronister

When plumbing clogs arise, people tend to turn to plumbing snakes to correct them. They’re easy to use and much safer than chemical cleaners, and they can usually fix the problem with a little elbow grease. Here in Trabuco Canyon, drain cleaning services offer mechanized snakes, which are often a superior choice to the store-bought snakes you might be used to. Here’s why mechanized snakes work better than over-the-counter snakes.

As you may expect, store-bought snakes utilize a one-size-fits-all approach, which means that it’s designed to handle a wide variety of clogs. Unfortunately, that might not be sufficient to deal with the specific nature of a given clog, and even if it is, you might end up inadvertently damaging your plumbing in the process. Mechanized snakes, in contrast, typically offer interchangeable heads, allowing the plumber to tailor the snake to the exact nature of the clog. Not only does that help the snake do its job more quickly, but it can prevent inadvertent damage to the clog in the process.

Then there’s the issue of forced. Over-the-counter snakes usually rely on cranks or plain old-fashioned elbow grease, which again may not be sufficient to handle the task at hand. A mechanized snake, deployed by a professional, can exercise just the right amount of force to break up the clog while still keep in your pipes undamaged. When you add that to a fitted head, it makes the use of a mechanized snake the clear chose over store-bought models.

That isn’t to say a store-bought model is completely useless. Indeed, in mild cases, it can function perfectly adequately, but like a lot of things, you get what you pay for, and for all but the most basic clogs, mechanical snakes work better than over-the-counter snakes. Drain cleaning services along with a host of other resourceful plumbing services are offered by the experts at Saddleback Plumbing. If you’re having problems with a tough clog or in need of other plumbing repair in Trabuco Canyon, pick up the phone and give us a call today. We’ll take care of it with the latest technological advances, used by experienced pros who know how to do the job right.