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Don’t Panic! How to Quickly Find an Emergency Plumber When You Need One

It can be a stressful and daunting experience when you need to find an emergency plumber quickly. The thought of having to go through the process of finding a reliable plumber can leave you in a panic, especially if you don’t know where to start. But with the right information and a few tips, you can quickly and confidently find an emergency plumber when you need one.

What to Look for When Hiring an Emergency Plumber

When you are in need of an emergency plumber, the most important things to consider are the plumber’s credentials and experience. It is important to make sure that the plumber is licensed and insured, as this will give you peace of mind that the work will be completed to the highest standards. Additionally, it is important to check reviews and ratings to ensure that they have a good reputation.

It is also important to ask the plumber what services they offer. Make sure that they are able to handle the task that you require, and that they have the necessary tools and supplies to do the job. It is also important to check that the plumber is available in your area, as some may only service certain areas.

Tips for Quickly Finding an Emergency Plumber

When you need an emergency plumber, it is important to act quickly to ensure that the issue is resolved as soon as possible. Here are a few tips for quickly finding one:

  • Look online. You can search for plumbers in your area on websites such as Yelp and Google. Make sure to read the reviews to get an idea of the quality of services they offer.
  • Ask friends and family. Your friends and family may be able to provide you with recommendations for plumbers in your area.
  • Check local listings. Look in your local newspaper, yellow pages, and other business listings for plumbers in your area.
  • Contact the local plumbing association. The local plumbing association may be able to provide you with a list of plumbers in your area.
  • Call the emergency hotline. Many plumbing companies have emergency hotlines that you can call for assistance.

How to Check the Credentials of an Emergency Plumber

Once you have found a few potential plumbers, it is important to check their credentials to ensure that you are hiring a reliable and experienced person for the job. Here are a few things to look for when checking credentials:

  • Make sure that the plumber is licensed and insured. This will ensure they are legally qualified to do the job.
  • Check how long the plumber has been in business and how many years of experience they have.
  • Read reviews and ratings to get an idea of the quality of services they offer.
  • Make sure that the plumber offers guarantees for their work. This will give you peace of mind that you will be satisfied with the work.

The Benefits of Hiring a Professional Emergency Plumber

Hiring a professional emergency plumber has many benefits. Not only will they be able to diagnose and fix the problem quickly and efficiently, but they will also be able to provide advice and tips to prevent future problems. Additionally, they will be able to provide you with accurate estimates for the cost of the job and can help you save money in the long run by avoiding costly repairs.

Furthermore, professional plumbers are experienced and knowledgeable, so you can be sure that they will be able to handle any problem that you may have. They will also be able to provide you with safety tips and advice on how to prevent future plumbing issues.

Warning Signs of a Disreputable Emergency Plumber

When hiring an emergency plumber, it is important to be aware of the warning signs of a disreputable one. Here are a few signs to look out for:

  • Unusually low prices. If the plumber is offering a price that is significantly lower than the market rate, this could be a sign that they are not reputable.
  • No insurance or license. Make sure that the plumber is licensed and insured.
  • Poor reviews. Check reviews and ratings to make sure that the plumber has a good reputation.
  • Unwilling to provide references. A reputable plumber should be able to provide you with references from past clients.

How to Prepare Before Calling an Emergency Plumber

Before calling an emergency plumber, it is important to prepare. Here are a few things to do before calling one:

  • Gather information. Make sure to have all the necessary information about the problem ready, such as the location, type of plumbing issue, and any other relevant details.
  • Research the issue. Research the issue online to get an idea of what the problem could be and what solutions are available.
  • Know the costs. Research the estimated costs of the job so that you can prepare for the financial aspect.
  • Gather references. Ask family and friends for references for plumbers in your area.

What to Ask When Calling an Emergency Plumber

  1. Are you available in my area?
  2. Are you licensed and insured?
  3. What services do you offer?
  4. How long have you been in business?
  5. How much experience do you have?
  6. Do you have any references?
  7. What is the estimated cost of the job?
  8. Do you offer any guarantee for your work?

How to Handle the Costs of an Emergency Plumber

When hiring, it is important to consider the costs. Emergency plumbing services can be expensive, so it is important to ensure that you are prepared for the financial aspect of the job. Here are a few tips for handling the costs of this service:

  • Get an estimate. Ask the plumber for an estimate of the costs before they start the job.
  • Shop around. Compare the prices of different plumbers to get the best deal.
  • Get references. Ask family and friends for references for plumbers in your area.
  • Ask for discounts. Some plumbers may be willing to offer discounts for certain services.
  • Consider financing. Some plumbing companies offer financing options to help with the costs.

Conclusion

When you need to find an emergency plumber, it can be a stressful experience. But with the right information and a few tips, you can quickly and confidently find an emergency plumber when you need one. Make sure to look for a reputable and experienced plumber, check their credentials, and prepare for the financial aspect of the job. If you follow these steps, you can be sure that you will find a reliable and experienced emergency plumber when you need one.

We Can Help

If you’re in need of an emergency plumber, don’t panic! Get in touch with us today and we’ll connect you with the right emergency plumber for your needs.

7 Essential Pros and Cons of a Tankless Water Heater

When it comes to keeping your home warm and cozy, nothing is more important than hot water. After all, you can’t take a shower or get clean in any other way. But traditional water heaters, compared to tankless water heaters, are energy-intensive appliances that use about 20% of the natural gas consumed throughout the country every year. Moreover, they are prone to maintenance issues and shorter-than-expected lifespans. So if you’re looking for a more eco-friendly alternative to a standard gas water heater, a tankless version might be perfect for you. In this article, we are going to explore the pros and cons of tankless water heaters and show you how they work.

What is a Tankless Water Heater?

A tankless water heater is a device that heats up water as it is being used. It doesn’t store water in a tank, so it can be an excellent solution if you have a limited amount of space in your home. It can also be a great option if you want to save energy and money because tankless water heaters use less energy than traditional models. A traditional water heater stores water in a tank until it’s needed. It then gives off that water at a steady temperature. A tankless water heater only heats up water as it is being used, so it can’t provide hot water for a group of people at once. But that could be a good thing, as it can reduce the risk of scalding accidents.

Pros of Using a Tankless Water Heater

– Smaller Footprint – Since a tankless water heater only heats up water as it is being used, it has a smaller footprint than a traditional water heater. This can be useful if you don’t have a lot of room in your home for appliances.

– Less Waiting Time – With a traditional water heater, you have to wait for the water to heat up before using it. You don’t have to do that with a tankless option. You can get clean water as soon as the heater starts heating up the water.

– Eco-Friendly – Traditional water heaters use natural gas, which releases carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide can trap heat in the atmosphere, which can cause global warming. A tankless water heater, on the other hand, uses electricity. Electricity can also contribute to global warming, but a tankless option uses much less electricity than a traditional water heater.

– Save Money – Traditional water heaters use a lot of energy, which can cause them to increase your energy bills. Tankless uses less energy, so it can help you to save money.

Cons of a Tankless Water Heater

– Higher Initial Investment – Since a tankless water heater uses less energy than a traditional water heater, it doesn’t use as much electricity. That means it doesn’t generate as much money for your utility. To make up for that difference, the tankless water heater costs more than its traditional counterpart.

– Smaller Capacity – While a tankless water heater can heat water faster than a traditional water heater, it doesn’t have as much capacity. That means you will have to wait longer for enough hot water if you have a big family.

 – Can’t Handle Huge Amounts of Water – Some tankless water heaters can’t handle large amounts of water all at once. That could be a problem, especially if you have a big family. A tankless water heater simply can’t heat up that much water in a short period of time, so it might fail to keep up under the pressure.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Tankless Water Heater

– Amount of Water You Need – If you have a big family, you might need a tankless water heater with a large capacity. If you live alone or have small children, a smaller-capacity tankless water heater might be more than enough for you.

– Source of Electricity – If you buy a tankless water heater, you will want to make sure your utility provides electricity. If your utility uses natural gas to power your home, you won’t be able to use a tankless water heater.

– Plumbing – The plumbing in your home could be a problem if you decide to buy a tankless water heater. You have to have the right kind of pipes to make the tankless water heater work properly. Otherwise, it might not draw water properly and could break down.

How to Install a Tankless Water Heater

– Mark the Location of the Water Heater – The first thing you should do is mark the location of the water heater. In most cases, the water heater should be placed in a warm spot above the ground.

– Keep the Water Line Clear – Water tanks use a pipe to connect to the water heater. That pipe should be kept clear so that water can flow through it easily.

– Install the Water Heater – You can now install the water heater. Simply follow the instructions on the water heater box to do so.

– Connect the Water Line – You can now connect the water line to the water heater. If you’re unsure about how to do it, you can call a professional to do it for you.

Final Words

Tankless water heaters can help you save money on your energy bills. They also help to reduce water waste since they only heat up the water that is needed. However, you have to consider some factors such as the amount of water, the type of electricity, and the plumbing in your house.

Trust Palo Alto Plumbing

Palo Alto Plumbing, Heating, and Air Conditioning is a company that is proud to serve our California customers and provide top HVAC services. We understand that all customers have different concerns, so we will be there to make sure your home is comfortable. Our team of professionals will quickly arrive to help with troubleshooting that solves all of your problems. Please call us today!

5 Important Services Residential Plumbers Cover

While plumbing services are a common household task, fixing broken or leaky pipes can be a serious hassle. However, it’s not an issue you need to handle alone. With the help of residential plumbers, you can quickly restore your plumbing to full operation in no time. Residential plumbers are experts in fixing problems at home and offer affordable rates for their services. Depending on the complexity of the problem, you might need more than one visit from a plumber. Luckily, there are many qualified residential plumbers available that you can trust with this task. Here is everything you need to know about hiring residential plumbers and which one is right for you.

How to find reliable residential plumbers

There is no set rule for finding a reliable plumber. With the right due diligence, you can find a trustworthy plumber for residential plumbing services. Here are a few tips to help you find a reliable plumber:

– Ask for referrals: The best place to start your search for a plumber is your friends, family, and neighbors. If you know someone who has recently used plumbing services, ask them who they would recommend. If you don’t know anyone that has used a plumber recently, ask around at work or your local coffee shop. You can also ask your realtor for a recommendation.

– Get at least 3 estimates: Once you have a few names, it’s time to see what each plumber has to offer. You can get an estimate from each plumber and compare the services, prices, and overall professionalism. The estimate will help you get a better idea of the tasks that need to be performed to get your plumbing back to normal. This will also give you an idea of the plumber’s charges for the given job.

– Check their credentials: Make sure you check the plumber’s credentials and certifications. You can do this by checking their website and online reviews. You can also ask the plumber for a copy of their business license and insurance. This will help you verify that they are a legitimate company and not just a person working out of their garage.

What do residential plumbers do?

A plumber is a person who installs and repairs water and gas piping systems in your home. Residential plumbers don’t always work on large projects like a new building’s plumbing system. Instead, they spend their time on smaller projects for individual households. A residential plumber can help you with the following tasks:

– Fixing a leaky faucet: With daily use, all faucets will have some sort of leak. Residential plumbers can perform minor repairs to stop the leak and restore the faucet to full operation.

– Removing a clog: Clogged drains are a common plumbing problem. Residential plumbers can clear your drain line to restore normal water flow.

– Installing a new kitchen faucet: If you want a new kitchen faucet on a regular sink, you can install it yourself. However, most people hire a professional for a kitchen faucet replacement.

– Installing a new water heater: A water heater is a major plumbing task that requires professional expertise. Residential plumbers can replace your water heater with a brand new one.

– Installing a new water filtration system: A water filtration system helps keep your water clean and safe from contaminants. Residential plumbers can help you install a new water filtration system.

Licensed and insured residential plumbers

When you hire a plumbing service for residential plumbing, you want to make sure the company is licensed and insured. A licensed plumbing service has undergone inspection by the state and has proven that they meet the state’s standard for plumbers. An insurance policy will protect you in case of any damages to your home or property. If you hire a licensed and insured plumbing service, they will likely have workers’ compensation insurance to protect their employees if they get injured on the job. Here are a few things you can look out for when choosing a licensed and insured plumbing service:

– Ask for their plumbing license and insurance information: You can start by requesting their license and insurance information. If they have both, they will likely have no problem showing them to you.

– Ask for references: References will help you verify the company’s legitimacy. You can ask references about their experience with the company and if they are satisfied with the services provided.

– Ask about their process: You can also ask about the company’s process for handling residential plumbing jobs. You can ask about their scheduling practices, how they charge for their services, and what type of repairs they perform.

The benefits of using licensed and insured residential plumbers

There are many benefits to hiring licensed and insured plumbing services.

– They are trained and experienced: As a licensed and insured plumbing service, they have undergone rigorous training to master their trade. They also have years of experience installing and repairing residential plumbing systems. This means they can handle any plumbing issues you face quickly and efficiently.

– They have the right tools and equipment: Residential plumbers have the right tools and equipment to handle nearly any situation. Their tools will include everything from wrenches to screwdrivers. Their equipment will include various plumbing pipes and hoses. This can help them fix your plumbing issues quickly and efficiently.

– They will leave your home clean: Residential plumbers are expected to leave your home as clean as they found it. This includes cleaning up any mess they made while fixing your plumbing. This will help you avoid having to clean up after the plumber and make the experience as painless as possible.

Finding the right licensed and insured residential plumbers for your home

Once you have narrowed down your list of residential plumbing service providers, it is time to find the right one for your home. Here are a few tips to help you find the right plumbing service for your home:

– Ask for references: References can help you verify their legitimacy and make sure you are hiring a trustworthy company. References can also give you an idea of how they operate their business.

– Ask about their qualifications: You can ask about their employees’ qualifications and certifications. You can also ask about their licensing and insurance information.

– Ask about their process: You can ask about the company’s process for handling residential plumbing jobs. You can ask about their scheduling practices, how they charge for their services, and what type of repairs they perform.

– Get multiple estimates: Once you have a few names, you can get multiple estimates to compare each company’s rates and services.

When you should not use a licensed and insured plumbing service

Not all plumbing service providers are the same. Some may not be licensed or insured. Others might be unqualified to handle your plumbing issues. These can be signs of a shoddy or unlicensed residential plumbing service:

– They are significantly less expensive: If a plumbing service is significantly less expensive than their competitors, there might be a reason why. You should ask about their licensing and insurance before you hire them.

– They have poor customer reviews: You should always check a residential plumbing service’s online reviews before hiring them. You can find out what past customers think about their services.

– They don’t want to show you their license and insurance: A licensed and insured plumbing service should have no issue showing you their license and insurance. If they refuse to show you, you should avoid hiring them.

– They don’t show up on time: Hiring a residential plumbing service is stressful enough without having to wait around for them. You should expect them to arrive on time.

Conclusion

Plumbing services are a common household task, but fixing broken or leaky pipes can be a serious hassle. However, it’s not an issue you need to handle alone. With the help of residential plumbers, you can quickly restore your plumbing to full operation in no time. Residential plumbers are experts in fixing problems at home and offer affordable rates for their services. Depending on the complexity of the problem, you might need more than one visit from a plumber. Luckily, there are many qualified residential plumbers available that you can trust with this task.

Trust Palo Alto Plumbing

Palo Alto Plumbing, Heating, and Air Conditioning is a company that is proud to serve our California customers and provide top HVAC services. We understand that all customers have different concerns, so we will be there to make sure your home is comfortable. Our team of professionals will quickly arrive to help with troubleshooting that solves all of your problems. Please call us today!

11 Ways on How to Find a Water Leak Underground

Is there water pooling in your yard or at the bottom of a slope, and is there improper drainage? If so, you may have an underground water leak. But how can you know for sure? We’ll examine the signs and how to find a water leak underground, why it should be repaired, and who to contact.

How to Find a Water Leak Underground

There are several indications that water is leaking underground. Here are some tell-tale signs:

A high water bill

A water bill should remain about the same each month unless you had a long-term guest or were on vacation. Look at water bills from the last few months to see if there has been an increase. If there has, it is an excellent time to call a home inspector to check out the plumbing.

Low water pressure

If there is low water pressure and you haven’t been notified about a city water pressure issue, it may be because the pipes are clogged, worn down, or broken. In some areas, new construction can cause drains to get clogged.

Broken pavement or driveway bulges

If there are no trees around, these signs indicate a pipe has cracked.

Toilets bubbling

A toilet that is bubbling indicates a clogged drain or broken pipe.

A sinkhole or pothole in your yard

A cracked pipe can cause sinkholes and potholes. Sinkholes and potholes are serious matters and require calling a home inspector immediately.

A damaged foundation or wet spots may be present

There may be a leaking or broken pipe seeping through the home if you see wet spots. This can damage the home’s foundation and ruin the structure if it is not caught early enough.

Water contaminated with dirt

There is something wrong with your pipes if you see dirt and debris in your water.

Bad odor

When there is an obstruction or broken pipe in the sewer, dirty water doesn’t flow where it should, and you will smell an odor. This is the perfect time to have a home inspector examine it.

There is water in the road

Water has no place to go but to flow down the street when a pipe bursts. This is a sure sign you have a water leak.

Your house is older than 30 years

Old homes tend to have plumbing issues as their lifespan is limited. A water leak underground might result from corroded pipes or broken pipes due to weather or the age of the home. Inspecting the plumbing system early is crucial to determine whether you have a water leak.

Sounds from pipes

It’s a smart idea to call a home inspector if you hear sounds coming from the pipes. A sewer scope may be used to assess pipe conditions. A flexible camera looks for cracks, line damage, and underground roots.

A hiss is a sound that indicates a drop in water pressure. Water can also flow around the pipe, creating a splashing sound. Additionally, pipes can be damaged by pebbles and stones clicking through and banging into them.

How to Find a Water Leak Underground: The Presence of Trees

A tree can damage a pipe if it grows too close to it because it likes the nutrients and water in the lines. You can have a sewer scope inspection done before purchasing a home to see if there are any issues with the piping. In fact, you can have this done while you are living there if there are problems with the water or if you want to know the condition of the pipes.

Inspect the Bottom of Cabinets and Sinks

Ensure that the cabinets and water are free of discoloration and mold every year. You can save a lot of money and hassle in the long run if you catch it early.

Underground Water Leaks are Emergencies

Leaking or broken pipes are not something to brush off and procrastinate. In addition to structural damage to the foundation and extensive damage to the interior and exterior of the residences, broken pipes can cause safety hazards.

Conclusion

It is unfortunate when water leaks underground, but if caught early, it can save you a lot of money. Keeping an eye on the abovementioned areas and paying attention to signs will be helpful. We hope this post was helpful for you in how to find a water leak underground. Read about the dangers of pipe leaks here for further information.

Who Should You Call?

Palo Alto Plumbing can help you detect leaks outside your home by inspecting sewers and pipes inside to locate leaks! If you require assistance, contact us right away!

How Often Should I Do HVAC Maintenance? Tips for Homeowners

HVAC maintenance is an important task for any homeowner.  HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. It’s a term that encompasses both an air conditioner and a furnace, which are essential in any home. In fact, the HVAC system is one of the largest investments you’ll make in your home. So you need to keep it working for maximum efficiency. Regularly servicing your HVAC system will ensure that your air conditioner, furnace, and water heater are in good shape. It will also ensure that they continue to work when you need them most. Here are some ways to assure that your HVAC system is well-maintained so you can stay comfortable year-round.

Why You Should Service Your HVAC System Regularly

Below are some reasons why you should service your HVAC system regularly.

  •         Regular servicing helps identify any potential problems before they arise. You can address them before they become more severe and costly than they would be otherwise. Replacing your HVAC system is expensive, so regular maintenance is essential to protecting the investment you’ve made.
  •         Preventative maintenance will also help reduce your energy costs. A well-maintained heating and cooling system offers better efficiency and uses less energy than a poorly maintained one.
  •         The best way to enjoy a comfortable indoor living space is with an HVAC system that operates efficiently. The HVAC system provides the optimum temperature for your home. And well-maintained systems are less likely to break down during peak hours so you and your family stay comfortable.
  •         If your HVAC system is frequently serviced, it will last longer. With proper maintenance, the lifespan of your heating and cooling systems can be increased by up to four times. It’s important to have professionals help you maintain these systems because they have knowledge that you might not have. Professionals may also be able to find problems before they become more serious and costly.
  •         Service your HVAC system on a regular basis to ensure that you have the best air quality in your home. A dirty HVAC system can create bacteria, allergens, and other contaminants in your indoor air. By servicing your HVAC system on a regular basis, you can help prevent this from happening. And if you’ve never had your HVAC system serviced before, it could be time to make an appointment!
  •         We shouldn’t forget that HVAC systems have an impact on the environment. A serviced system uses less energy, which means you are using less waste and not impacting the environment as severely.

When and How Often to Schedule a Service Appointment

Depending on your HVAC system, service appointments should be scheduled every 12-18 months. But this time frame can change depending on the type of system you have.

For example, if you have a heat pump, it may need service every 6-12 months. If you have a gas furnace or condensing unit, it may need service every 18-24 months. A fuel oil furnace may need service once a year.

You should also check for signs that the system needs additional maintenance. These signs could include:

* Persistent noise coming from your HVAC system

* Frequent frosty windows in cold weather

* Unexpected fluctuations in temperature throughout your home

* A damp carpet or musty smell

If these issues persist after cleaning the filters and checking for clogs, book an appointment with a professional ASAP.

Other Important Factors in HVAC System Maintenance

The cost for HVAC repair and maintenance varies depending on the conditions and age of your system. Maintenance will also depend on the number of people living in your home. How often you use your heating and cooling equipment is also a factor

Older HVAC systems require more maintenance than newer ones because they use more energy. Older systems may also need to be replaced if they start making strange noises, shaking, or leaking.

Tips for HVAC Maintenance

  1.         Have a professional come out at least twice per year for an inspection of your air conditioner, furnace, and water heater.
  2.         Schedule an annual tune-up if you notice any problems with your air conditioner or a furnace.
  3.         If you live in an area that experiences heavy snowfall, have a professional come out once per year to clear the snow from the unit. This is so it doesn’t overwork itself trying to compensate for lost heat from outside sources like sunlight or wind.

NEED AN HONEST HVAC PROFESSIONAL?

We hope this list of tips to maintain your HVAC system has been helpful. When you think about it, it’s a lot of responsibility to take care of a HVAC system on a regular basis. That’s why we have HVAC services on standby to help you with any repairs or maintenance needs. We know you have enough to worry about, so let us handle your HVAC service needs.

Do you need a professional HVAC companies near me to help with your HVAC system and perform honest, routine maintenance? You can always find help by searching for “HVAC companies near me,” but know that we are right here in Palo Alto and ready to help! HVAC maintenance is essential for many reasons. You could be breathing cleaner air, saving money, and enjoying greater peace of mind with a reputable company like Palo Alto Plumbing.

SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT WITH US TODAY

If you’re from Palo Alto and other nearby areas, choose Palo Alto Plumbing, Heating and Air for HVAC companies near me. We offer a variety of routine and essential services that include 24-hour emergency HVAC calls. For fast, reliable, and honest HVAC repair and maintenance, call us at 650-405-1460 or contact us here. We look forward to hearing from you.

 

How to Find the Best HVAC Company For Your Home or Business

If you’re looking for reputable HVAC maintenance for your home or business, finding the best company can seem a little tricky, but we’re here to help! After all, there are plenty of companies that offer similar services and prices, but not all of them will provide you with the same level of customer satisfaction. That’s why it’s so important to do some research instead of making a hasty decision about which company to hire for the job. We’ve compiled a list of helpful tips below that will help narrow down your search when trying to find the best HVAC company.

Why HVAC Maintenance Matters

So you’re in the market for a new HVAC company? We’ve got all the info you need to find the best HVAC maintenance in town, whether it’s for your home or business. But first things first, why is maintenance so important?

Taking good care of your HVAC is essential to keeping a comfortable home or office environment. Your HVAC helps control the temperature and climate in your space. It also moderates the humidity and helps to purify the indoor air you breathe. Not to mention, if you don’t schedule regular HVAC maintenance for your system, it’s eventually going to break down. This is both stressful as well as costly. To make sure your HVAC is running properly all year long, it needs a little care once in a while. Fortunately, there are lots of useful maintenance tips and tricks that can help extend the life expectancy of your HVAC system. For example, changing its air filters on a regular basis, and performing routine inspections to make sure everything is in tip-top shape. Since its functions are so important to your health and comfort, you can see why hiring the best HVAC maintenance company matters so much.

Ask Questions

When you begin to consider your options, feel free to ask questions. This will help you find an expert who is best suited for your needs and budget. You can ask about a company’s experience and training, what’s included in their HVAC maintenance services, and anything else that comes to mind.

Experience

Be sure to find out how long the HVAC company has been in business as well as what kind of experience they have. It’s all right to ask them about their background and training. You may also want to request references for previous jobs they’ve done, too. This is an easy way to help you get an idea of the quality of their work before you decide if you want to hire them. This information is key to helping you decide which company to hire.

Licensed and Insured

It’s important that the HVAC company you choose is also licensed and insured, for a couple reasons. For one, it suggests a level of professionalism, and also that the company is committed to providing customers with high-quality services. This is because you need a certain level of training to get a license, regardless of the field. And second, insurance protects you against personal injury lawsuits if anything were to happen while they were on the job.

Browse Reviews

You should also research reviews before you hire an HVAC company to work in your home or business. It’s so easy to check Google that there’s really no reason not to. This way, you can quickly eliminate any companies with less than outstanding reviews. If you don’t read reviews, how can you be sure you’re hiring the best HVAC company?

Billing

It’s a good idea to request an estimate upfront, and also to find out what’s actually included in the service. An estimate of the total cost gives you a better idea of what you’re paying for before any work is even done. You can also ask for an itemized bill in writing, which will provide specifics about what you’re being charged for. An itemized statement is also a record of what was done during HVAC maintenance, so you have that information if you ever need it later. Keep in mind that cheaper is not usually better, but quotes can help you make a final selection, and help you determine the average cost in your area.

HVAC Maintenance Tips

Winter will be here before you know it, and that means that your HVAC system will soon be put to the test. It’s best to make sure it’s operating properly now in order to avoid problems later on when you really need your heater.

Here are some tips for preparing your system for the rainy winter months ahead:

  1. Clean or replace your air filters because we spend more time indoors during the winter, and heaters burn off a lot of dust when they’ve been sitting all year.
  2. Heaters dry out the air. Consider installing a high-quality humidifier to help keep your home or office more comfortable while the heater is running. This can help prevent dry, cracked skin, chapped lips, and even nosebleeds.
  3. Check the air ducts that carry hot air throughout your home or workplace. These should be clean, and there shouldn’t be any furniture blocking them.

The Bottom Line

Your HVAC system has some essential jobs to do, but it needs to be cared for on a regular basis. Yearly HVAC maintenance can save you time and energy in the long run by avoiding expensive breakdowns. On average, it takes about an hour each year, and the cost is much more affordable than waiting for a breakdown. It’s simply easier to schedule regular maintenance than it is to deal with HVAC repairs. All in all, making sure your system is properly maintained year-round is the best way to prevent an issue from happening, especially during the chill of winter.

Schedule HVAC Maintenance

We hope this blog post helped, and that you now feel confident in choosing a great HVAC company. If you need HVAC maintenance, give us a call at Palo Alto Plumbing Heating & Air by dialing 650-405-1460 today for all of your heating, air conditioning, and plumbing needs!

Your HVAC Maintenance Checklist

It’s critical to take care of HVAC maintenance before the cold season so that your home is prepared for chilly, sweater weather. The importance of prevention really can’t be emphasized enough. Ideally, this home maintenance should be done on a regular basis to cut back on the need for expensive HVAC repairs in the future. It’s also important for your comfort and health!

In this blog post we’re going to share with you some things you need to keep an eye on when it comes to HVAC maintenance, as well as how a specialist can help.

Essential HVAC Maintenance

Even if your heating and cooling systems seem to be working just fine, they may not be as efficient as they could be. A yearly tune-up will ensure that your heating and cooling systems are working at their optimal efficiency levels; this can help you save money on your monthly electric bill too. A professional HVAC tune-up will also identify any issues with things like airflow or faulty parts.

Is Your Heater Ready?

The first step to making sure your home is comfortable during the coming cold season is to make sure your heating system is running effectively. This, of course, requires routine HVAC maintenance, like making sure the blower motor is working right.

If you have a gas furnace, the exhaust flue needs to be checked to verify that it’s clear as well. This is because carbon monoxide is a serious threat to our homes, but an HVAC specialist can help keep your household safe. If the exhaust flue becomes blocked, carbon monoxide can build up inside your house.

What is Carbon Monoxide?

Carbon monoxide is a deadly gas that is colorless and odorless. It’s created by the burning of fuel, such as leaving a car idling in a garage. It’s so dangerous to breathe in CO because it actually displaces oxygen in your blood. This can cause both short-term and long-term health effects, and even result in death.

Replace Air Filters

Air filters are typically replaced every three months (90 days), or as recommended by the manufacturer. A dirty filter that’s full of trapped dust and allergens obviously won’t be as efficient, and can actually increase your monthly energy costs. It’s also not great for your health, so be sure to change air filters regularly to remove dust, pollen, pet dander, and other allergens from the air that circulates through your home.

Clean AC Condenser Coils

Do you have an air conditioner? Have your AC condenser coils cleaned at least once a year. Dirty, clogged coils can decrease the efficiency of your HVAC system and lead to expensive AC repair work. Also, be sure to remove debris around an outdoor air conditioning unit, such as grass clippings or leaves that accumulate during yardwork.

Flush Your Water Heater

How do you know if your water heat needs to be flushed? In general, it’s a good idea to have this done once a year by a professional who provides HVAC maintenance. This will help make sure there are no sediment blockages in hoses or fittings that can lead to frustrating issues. There are some common signs to watch out for, including a lack of hot water, strange smells, and even rusty-looking water.

Check Hoses for Cracks or Leaks

An HVAC expert will also check hoses for cracks or leaks. If they’re damaged, they will need to be replaced with hoses that match the original equipment and specifications. This is essential because it can help prevent extensive damage in the long run. An HVAC expert should check all hoses to ensure they’re in good working order.

Swap Out Old Thermostat Batteries

A simple thing you can do on your own is check the batteries in your thermostat to make sure they’re still working properly. It’s usually not too tricky to swap them out for a fresh pair if it’s needed. But if your thermostat is not working properly or is showing signs of wear and tear, replacing the batteries may not fix the problem. If it’s still not functioning properly even after new batteries have been installed, then a professional can check the controls.

Inspect for Leaks with Gas Furnaces

If you have a gas furnace, you will also need an expert to inspect the entire system for any possible gas leaks. As mentioned above, this is one of the most important steps you need to take as a homeowner to protect your household.

Check for Faulty Fans

Faulty fans can act up in different ways, like continuing to circulate air at high speeds. This can really cause unnecessary wear and tear on some HVAC parts. Humming or rattling are a strong indication that your AC fan motor needs to be replaced or repaired.

Examine Ductwork and Vents

This is also the best time to have ductwork and vents examined. These parts need to be in good shape for your HVAC system to function at its best. Did you know that dirty ducts can harm the air quality of your home? It pays to remove the buildup and grime that accumulates over time. It’s also possible for air ducts to leak if they become loose or disconnected. In some cases, wild animals have even been known to build nests inside ductwork, which can cause issues as well.

Schedule HVAC Maintenance Today

It’s important to be proactive when it comes to the HVAC maintenance in your home. Keep in mind that a problem is much easier and (usually) cheaper to fix before disaster strikes, so schedule an annual HVAC tune-up to make sure you’re getting the most out of your system!

These tasks will help keep your living space as comfortable as possible during both the cold winter months and the hottest summer days! Preventative measures can also save you the hassle of needing an emergency HVAC repair or replacement that could cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Let’s Talk

Here at Palo Alto Plumbing, our team can solve anything from a drippy faucet to a cracked sewer pipe, and also take care of all your HVAC needs. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will ensure your household’s health and safety by providing quality services.

Contact us at 650-405-1460 or fill out a contact form to chat with us today.

The Dangers of a Sewer Leak

A sewer leak is one of the most dreaded household plumbing malfunctions. Though most modern homes have preventative measures already in place, pipes can degrade or get damaged over time, creating prime conditions for a leak. If you regularly experience household mold, strange odors, slow draining, extra foliage growth with no alternative explanation, or cracks in the foundation of your home, it’s time to call a plumber. You may be dealing with a sewer leak.

The unpleasant eau de excrement odor aside, a sewer leak can be quite dangerous to your health and your home alike. The consequences of neglecting a leak, aside from being unsanitary, can lead to some serious issues for your home and well-being. Read on below to learn more about some of the most common dangers of a sewer leak.

Most Common Dangers of a Sewer Leak

Poisonous Sewer Gas

When human waste breaks down, it forms a byproduct known as sewer gas. Sewer gas is composed of several chemicals, including ammonia, methane, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen sulfide. This smelly gas is often identified as smelling like rotten eggs – but is it toxic?

The answer is yes and no. In low concentrations, sewer gas is foul but not necessarily harmful. At higher concentrations, or if you are exposed for a long period of time, you may experience symptoms of sewer gas poisoning. Left unchecked, these symptoms can lead to serious health issues for household residents, including pets. This is why, if you suspect a leak, it’s crucial to call a plumber immediately.

Ammonia is a toxic chemical at high levels. Low to moderate exposure can cause eye, nose, and throat irritation. High levels of ammonia can cause death in humans.

Hydrogen sulfide is one of the main components of sewer gas. Research shows that hydrogen sulfide is toxic to the organ systems of the body – meaning that exposure can lead to organ damage and death.

While carbon dioxide and methane are not inherently harmful to humans, you do not want these gases hanging around in the air that you breathe. Methane alone is highly flammable. In combination with ammonia (which is also flammable), these gases are a serious fire hazard.

If you suspect sewer gas exposure, contact a medical professional and an emergency plumber immediately.

Contaminated Water

Old or damaged pipes can crack, rust, degrade, and eventually seep into nearby groundwater. This worst-case scenario can contaminate your water supply. What’s worse, if your neighborhood uses aquifers for groundwater, contamination can occur on a much larger scale. An entire neighborhood could suffer poisoning from one cracked line.

The health consequences of drinking water contaminated with sewage cannot be understated. Even healthy individuals may experience disabling gastrointestinal problems, stomach cramping, dehydration, developmental problems, reproductive problems, or death. Such consequences can be avoided by having your plumbing checked approximately every two years. It’s just not worth the risk of skipping essential maintenance.

Home Damage

Sewer leaks can cause the foundation of your home to crack as well. As water or sewage leaks pool in various areas of your home, it can cause the ground to shift. All of this erodes at your home’s foundation from the bottom up, which can cause cracks in the foundation and even buckle your patios or driveways.

Water damage is also a common side effect of a sewer leak. If your septic tank is located close to your home, or if the leak is severe enough, you may experience flooding and water damage to your house. Water alone can cause serious structural damage to a home, but the chemicals and hazardous byproducts from natural waste can make that damage much more severe. Drywall can give out, mold can form, and, ultimately, supports can even become unstable. A bad leak can leave a house almost uninhabitable if left alone for long enough.

Unwanted Critters

If you choose to neglect your leaking sewer, you may as well tape a sign to your window that declares “PESTS WELCOME.” Sewer leaks can attract a host of unwanted vermin. Rats, mice, squirrels, raccoons, possums, and chipmunks naturally search for hidden sources of water away from prying eyes. Drippy pipes are naturally enticing. If you provide a convenient water source in the form of a leak, expect to see (or hear) some crawly new friends.

That includes insects! Cockroaches, mosquitoes, ants, spiders, and termites are just a few of the insects that are commonly attracted to standing water and sewer leaks. These sneaky insects often build whole colonies before they’re ever noticed. Maintaining your pipes is an easy way to prevent such animals and insects from invading your home.

Increasing Water Bill

If your water bill has been steadily increasing and your house smells funny, you may be paying for a sewer leak. All of that water not only damages your home, but it can put a serious dent in your wallet too. A moderate water leak can cause you to waste 6,000 gallons of water per month. That’s an incredible waste of water and money.

And remember – all of that leaking water is seeping into the foundation of your home, creating the prime conditions for mold and mildew.

These serious dangers are not something to put off. Neglecting your leaking sewer can cause damage to your home and your health. The best way to avoid these problems is to solve them before they arrive by way of prevention. You should never attempt to fix a serious plumbing problem on your own. It could be a real safety hazard and you may accidentally cause more damage. A licensed plumber will have the proper equipment and expertise to repair your sewer. Additionally, a licensed plumber should regularly inspect your home’s plumbing system at least every two years, and more often if problems arise.

When You Need a Plumber

Here at Palo Alto Plumbing, our licensed plumbers can solve anything between a drippy faucet and a cracked sewer pipe. Our detail-oriented and knowledgeable plumbers can ensure your household’s health and safety by providing quality services. Don’t let a fixable leak destroy your home. Contact us at 650-405-3052 or fill out a contact form on our website to chat with one of our representatives about all of your plumbing needs!

From Around the Web: X Excellent Infographics About Home Improvement

For many individuals, a home is one of the biggest investments they will make in their lifetime. That’s why it is so important for homeowners to understand their home improvement needs, including yearly maintenance and repair concerns.

We at Palo Alto Plumbing, Heating, and Air know how important it is for you to get the information you need to protect your home and keep it running smoothly and efficiently throughout the year. That’s why we’ve put together a list of informative infographics that help you better understand your home improvement needs.

Top Home Improvement Infographics

Whether you are a brand new homeowner or you’ve lived in your house for decades, it’s important to understand your home improvement needs. Use the infographics below to educate yourself on basic home improvement:

United States Census Bureau – Home Improvements

The U.S. Census Bureau gathers important data about the improvements that U.S. homeowners make to their homes. This infographic gives you more information about the top improvements that U.S. homeowners are making and how much they spend each year on home improvement. If you are planning your home improvement budget for the year, this infographic will give you a better idea of what most homeowners choose to focus on and how much you can expect to spend.

United States Census Bureau – Home Improvements

Home Improvements That Pay You Pack

Before investing in home improvement projects, it’s important that you consider your return on investment. Though any home improvement project may make your home a more comfortable environment, some projects are more worth your while because they tend to provide a higher resale value when you are ready to sell your home. This infographic gives a nice breakdown of the projects that will end up paying you back in the end.

Home Improvements That Pay You Pack

 

Drab to Fab: Home Improvements for Less than $1,000

Want to make some improvements to your home without breaking the bank? This infographic offers some awesome tips for affordable home improvement. It gives a simple breakdown of the costs for different improvements you can make in the kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom. It also provides some general tips for saving more money on your home improvement projects. This is a great infographic for the budget-conscious homeowner.

Home Improvements for Less than $1,000

 

Want to find more great, informative content on home improvement topics? Each month, we update our blog with interesting posts on home improvement, HVAC, and energy efficiency topics.

 

4 Best DIY Accounts to Follow on Twitter

The DIY community is all about sharing their tips and tricks for tackling any project big or small. From how-to blogs to inspiring imagery, there is no short of great DIY content on the web. One of the best places to find informative and inspiring content on the latest DIY trends and fun projects is on Twitter. Though there are many DIY-focused Twitter accounts, there are a few that we follow regularly for new ideas, helpful information, and fun inspiration.

Best DIY Twitter Accounts

Whether you’re looking for a how-to video for crafting, a blog post with home improvement tips, or just home design inspiration, you can find it all on Twitter. Here are just a few of our favorite DIY Twitter accounts:

DIY Inspired

@DIYInspired

This Twitter account is brought to you by DIY and craft blogger, Dinah, from www.diyinspired.com. On this Twitter account, she shares links to her blog content which offers tips, tricks, and advice on DIY craft projects. She also shares links to inspiring Pinterest boards as well as helpful DIY craft how-to videos. If you love to get crafty and you are always looking for new ways to improve your home décor, this is a great Twitter account to follow.

DIY Network

@DIYNetwork

The DIY Network is known as the home improvement how-to network, and that’s exactly what it provides – information on how to do just about anything around your home. Their Twitter account offers updates and behind the scenes looks at all your favorite DIY Network programming like Tiny House, Big Living and Building Off the Grid. The social media account also offers links to informative content about how to tackle DIY projects around your home.

Lifehacker

@lifehacker

Lifehacker is a different type of DIY resource than the rest. This Twitter account shares fun and informative articles on all the best tips, hacks, and how-to’s for your home and general daily living. This site covers everything from simple tricks that make using a digital scale easier to answers to life’s biggest questions, like, should I exercise on an empty stomach? This diverse resource is great for those who like learning neat little tips and tricks for making life easier. Just beware of any HVAC hacks!

This Old House

@ThisOldHouse

This Old House provides a wealth of informative content on home improvement, home repair, renovations, and other DIY projects. The Twitter feed is full of great content on everything from how to grow your own garden to affordable upgrades for your home. This is a must-follow account for anyone who is a fan of This Old House programming, or any homeowner who likes to learn more about how they can make affordable and lasting improvements to their own homes.

If you use social media to keep up with the latest in home improvement, be sure to follow us on Facebook. We post regular content on home improvement and HVAC topics, as well as company updates and recent promotions to help you save on all of your Palo Alto heating and air conditioning needs.