Toilet Clog

Few home issues rival the frustration one will encounter when dealing with a clogged toilet or drain. Some clogs may be imminent no matter how careful you are, but there are some things to keep away from your drains to help avoid and prolong them from occurring:
  1. Hair: Animals aren’t the only species subject to shedding. You may not be aware, but you lose an incredible amount of hair when showering. Don’t worry, this is healthy and usually grows back, so there’s no need to avoid the shower to keep yourself from balding. Your hair ends up entangling and clumps together in the drain piping. This decreases the water removal rate of your drain and can cause water to back up in the tub.
  2. Soap and Hard Water: Hard Water can be a real jerk (see our recent discussion on the subject). When soap and Hard Water combine, the outcome is a really tough soap scum that sticks to the linings of your drain piping. This unwanted lining will both catch objects passing though the pipes and restrict the amount of room that your used water has to flow through.
  3. Grease and Fats: This one pertains mostly to your kitchen sink and garbage disposal. You’ve definitely poured bacon grease down your sink drain. When it is hot it looks like a liquid that would pass through like water would, but have you ever left the grease in a pan for a bit? It turns into a gel like substance that’s incredibly hard to wash off. Once this hot grease or oil cools down or hits water as it passes through your pipes, it will congeal and most likely clog them.
  4. Foreign objects: Duh. I think we all agree that it should be pretty common knowledge not to flush a stapler or pair of socks down your toilet, but there are several items that people flush on a daily basis that may not be so obvious. Feminine products, q-tips, paper towels and trash should all find their way into the trash can, not down the drain. Basically, if it’s not toilet paper or your own human waste, keep it away from the toilet.
Keeping all these things in mind can go a long way in preventing clogged drains in your home, but the unfortunate reality is that clogs will eventually find their way into your home. When this does happen, and if you’re unable to plunge through it, please think of us over here at Resolve Trenchless Solutions when calling out a professional to clear your drains.

Water Conservation

We all know that with summer looming in the not so distance future, increased temperatures and humidity will also be showing their not so welcome faces. We also know that these increased temperatures often mean an increase in our electricity bills. While there may be no compromise to running those air conditioners all day long just to make staying inside bearable, there are ways to cut down on some other bills that will have little to no effect on your daily routine or living habits. One valuable resource that we overuse immensely, often times without even realizing it, is our water. Below are some helpful hints on how to decrease your water consumption and thus also decreasing your water bill. Some of these may seem common sense oriented, but many would be surprised at just how many wasteful habits we inherently have when it comes to water use. If you’re paying for all the water that comes out of your faucets, make sure you’re using all of it. If you paid to fill your tank up at the gas station, but only received 75% of the gasoline you purchased, you’d obviously be upset. You should feel the same way when it comes to the water you’re purchasing. Although it seems minimal, if you practice the following habits daily, you can save hundreds of gallons of water each month:
  1. Washing your hands after using the bathroom? Put soap on your hands prior to turning on the faucet.
  2. Time to get rid of that 5 o’clock shadow? Don’t run the water throughout the duration of shaving. The same goes for brushing your teeth.
  3. Nothing beats an ice cold glass of water. So actually add ice instead of running water until its cold. Another alternative is to fill a pitcher and place it in the fridge.
  4. Have some nice filets to cook but need them to thaw? Try thawing them in the fridge overnight versus running water over them. Thawing them in the fridge does not use any water while running water on them uses… well, a lot.
  5. What’s worse than having to wash dishes? Having to pay to wash dishes. Running your faucet the duration of washing your dishes can waste up to 14 gallons of water each time. Fill up your sink with warm water and wash them out of there to keep chore costs down.
  6. Or, are you using a dishwasher? Try scraping any food residue off of the plates instead of rinsing them in the sink. That’s kind of the whole purpose of the washing machine…
  7. Speaking of dishwashers, try to only run them to wash full loads. Unless you only own one plate and glass to drink from, you surely can get by with letting the machine fill up before using it.
  8. On a similar note, did you know that 22% of in-home water use stems from washing machines? Yikes! For those of you who didn’t know this, “it’s laundry day” was never more of a viable excuse to wear sweatpants in public. Cut that 22% down by only washing full loads of clothes.
  9. Baths are great, but the average tub takes almost 70 gallons to fill. A candle lit shower is a bit awkward, but definitely the more cost effective of two.
Have you ever bought something online and opted not to purchase the delivery insurance that comes with it and 3 weeks later you still haven’t received your package because the post office “lost it”? Paying for things and not receiving them is the worst, and this is exactly how leaks in your water line work. Leaks can really drive your water bill up, so be sure to check for them periodically to ensure you’re paying for what you’re actually getting. Here are some tips on how to gauge if you have a leak:
  1. Before you go to work in the morning, write down the reading on your water meter. When you come back from work later that day, assuming no one was home to use water, the reading should match what it was before you left. If this is not the case, you most likely have a leak.
  2. It can be difficult to tell if your toilet has a leak. One way to check if the tank is leaking is to add some dye and check back in a half hour. If the dye has made its way onto your floor or in the bowl, there’s a leak there that needs to be addressed.
If you discover you have a leak, it’s important to contact a professional, preferably Resolve Trenchless of course, to come out and fix it. Tampering with it yourself or letting it go without service can lead to even bigger issues down the road. Enjoy your summer and the extra bucks you’re going to save on your water bill now that you’ve eliminated some of those wasteful habits we all engage in without realizing.

Do I have a Clog?

While the tell-tale sign of a leak in your home’s drain pipes is usually as easy as looking for a backup of water, there are other several other indicators that can occur well before your clog is so extreme that it causes a backup. If you notice any of the following things, you’ve most likely got a clog coming your way that you should take care of sooner than later. Sinks and Showers:
  1. Drains Slowly: While water may not be entirely backing up, does it appear as though it’s draining slower than it should?
  2. Gurgling Sounds: Your pipes are meant to allow whatever is put down it to run smoothly. If you hear a gurgling sound coming from any of your drains, it’s a sign that that something may be obstructing its path.
  3. Rotting Food Smell: This mostly pertains to your kitchen sink or garbage disposal. If you smell a foul food odor coming from your drain, it’s probably because there’s food stuck in your drain. While your sink may not be backing up now, all it takes is a few additional pieces of food to stick and cause a major clog.
Toilets:
  1. Toilet Constantly Running: This could be a sign that your toilet is trying to push through a clog. If it’s randomly refilling without being a flushed, you may have an impending clog on your hands as well.
  2. Poor Flushing: If it seems like your toilet is struggling to flush or won’t flush at all, it could be the result of some blockage or build up.
  3. Leaks around the Toilet: This could be a myriad of problems, among them being a clog. See our entry on how to detect toilet leaks to help pinpoint the issue at hand.
  4. Hissing Sound: If you hear a hissing sound or water trickling in your tank, chances are that something is up and you’ll want to address quickly.
If you do encounter a clog, chances are a plunger could go a long way in helping you resolve it. If you don’t own a plunger or are still unable to get through it, we here at Resolve Trenchless Solutions would be more than happy to come out and RESOLVE your clog.