Reasons Why Your Plumbing Sweats in the Summer

If you are tired of finding condensation around your fixtures and pipes during the summer months, here are some solutions you may find helpful:

It’s all about the dew point.

The dew point is the temperature air needs to be cooled to in order for it to release water vapor, and the dew point changes with the humidity level. The higher the humidity, the higher the dew point. Once the temperature is below the dew point condensation occurs.  When air cools on contact with chilled surfaces (such as your water pipes and toilet tanks), it releases water vapor in the form of droplets. Condensation on pipes and tanks is more noticeable during the summer months simply because it is more humid with a higher dew point than other times of the year.

Accumulated drips can cause damage over time.

A little bit of water should not cause problems as long as it dries. When humidity is really high, the condensation that forms on your water pipes and toilet tanks can be substantial enough to puddle on floors and inside cabinets, this is where it could possibly cause damage. Even worse, that dampness in a dark, closed space, such as under a sink, creates the perfect environment for mold and mildew to grow.

Add insulation to prevent hot, humid air from contacting your cold pipes.

One of the easiest ways to keep water pipes from sweating is to cover them with insulation. Pipe insulation has a slit along the length of the tube that easily slips over your water supply pipes, making this easy for anyone to install. Also, the factory-applied adhesive at the seam activates when you close it, which makes an effective barrier to prevent humid air from reaching the cold pipes in the first place.

Increase the water temperature to decrease condensation.

Raising the temperature of your water a few degrees could be enough to make surfaces slightly warmer than the dew point, making it likely to reduce condensation. A water-mixing anti-sweat valve connects to both the hot and cold-water supply lines so it can introduce hot water into the cold line when needed. The amount of hot water can be adjusted to prevent your toilet tank from sweating while using as little hot water as possible.

Install a ventilation fan to reduce bathroom humidity and prevent toilet tank sweating.

The humidity caused by steamy showers increases the dew point so installing a ventilation fan will help remove the moisture in the air. Less moisture in the air means less moisture accumulating on cool surfaces.

6 Summer Plumbing Problems (and How to Avoid Them)

Summer is for fun – relaxing, entertaining, traveling and recharging. So don’t let summer plumbing problems spoil this fun time of the year! Here are some common (and preventable) situations to look for and avoid this summer.

1. Outdoor fun = indoor mess.

Whether your summer fun involves hiking trails, ATVs, or sand and surf, it’s a good bet that it comes with some extra dirt or sand. When washing up after your adventures, make sure you keep as much of it out of your drains as possible, so they don’t become clogged or damaged. Instead, hose yourself—and any kids or pets you took with you—off outside and knock the debris from clothes you plan to place in the washing machine. Your drains will thank you!

2. Summer is your sprinkler system’s busiest season.

If you had your sprinkler system inspected after winter’s disuse, then you are a step ahead in keeping it in working order this summer, but there are still a couple things to look out for:

  • Watch where you’re mowing. Aboveground sprinkler heads are easily damaged by mower blades.
  • Prevent pet damage. Bits of plastic and tubing may be tempting chew toys!

3. Some summer foods don’t agree with your garbage disposal.

Your garbage disposal works hard year-round, but summer can pose some additional challenges.

  • Grilling Out? To keep your garbage disposal running at its best, don’t let your guests put bones or fat down it.
  • Enjoying summer fruits and vegetables? Fibrous parts, like corn husks and cobs, celery

strings, banana peels and artichokes can jam up your disposal, as well as hard seeds and pits.

4. Is Spot a summer shedder?

Some dogs (and most cats) shed all year, while others grow a bulk winter coat that sheds in late spring/early summer. Whatever your breed’s schedule, you’ll want to prevent all that hair from clogging your pipes and causing backups.

  • If possible, avoid bathing a pet in the bathtub. If that’s not possible, make sure to trap fur and debris before it goes down the drain. There are devices on the market that can help with this.
  • Brush your pet regularly to reduce the amount of hair that hitches a ride on your clothes and linens and into your washing machine—or into your tub drain during the next bath.
  • Pre-rinse especially dirty pets. A fur coat can pick up a lot of gravel, sand and mud!

5. When it rains, it pours—into your basement.

Heavy summer rainfall can overwhelm your gutters and other drainage. Consider these tips:

  • Keep your gutters, downspouts and other drainage systems clear of debris.
  • Install a Sump Pump to collect and dispel any water that collects in your basement. If you already have one, make sure it is in good working condition.
  • Consider having a professional look at your property’s grading. You may need to shift some earth or add more drainage to keep water away from your foundation.

6. Make sure your travel plans include time for plumbing prep.

If you have summer travel plans, make sure your home is ready —especially if you are going to be away for weeks at a time.

  • Make sure all indoor and outdoor taps are completely off.
  • Arrange to have a trusted friend or neighbor check in on your house and make sure everything is ok.
  • Check your water-using appliances for loose or cracked hoses, leaks or other malfunctions.
  • Turn your water heater down to its low, pilot or vacation setting. No need to waste energy heating water that won’t be used!
  • Empty the dishwasher and washing machine, and leave them open to air. While you’re at it, make sure your garbage disposal and plumbing traps are clean. That way, you won’t be coming home to musty, unpleasant odors.
  • If your irrigation system is on a schedule, make sure it will run as desired while you’re away.
  • If you’ll be away for an extended amount of time, consider turning off your water main and water heater and draining your pipes and tank.

We hope these tips will help you avoid common summer plumbing problems, but if you do need service or repair, call Eastern Plumbing!

Summertime Plumbing Tips

Summer is an exciting and fun time for all. Kids are out of school which means lots of outdoor activities such as taking vacations, going swimming, bike riding, playing ball, summer barbecues and gatherings with friends.

All of these activities mean increased traffic in your home, including many more flushes of the toilet, loads of clothes to wash and dishes to clean. You will probably use the water hose more in the summer to fill pools, water flowers and the law. And many people take more showers during the summer months.

With all of this going on, we sometimes forget to question whether the home’s utilities are ready for all the extra summer traffic. Plumbing remains as one of the most important of those utilities because the pipes and pumps that brings water to us and sends it away are essential to basic sanitation and nutrition.

Trouble with the pipes can range from common and simple, to unusual and complex:

  • Running toilet
  • Clogged toilet, garbage disposal or drain
  • Leaky faucets or spigots (often need an O-ring)
  • Low/declined water pressure
  • Loose toilet or sink
  • Incorrect grade of drain pipes
  • Improper support of pipes, which sometimes makes a hammering noise
  • Pipes to outside not sealed sufficiently
  • Water heater fails, leaks or does not heat
  • Pipes burst or crack
  • Pipes will not flow due to obstruction

There are many proactive and preventative plumbing measures you can take to prepare for summertime so you can enjoy the warm weather instead of worrying about leaks, clogs, low pressure and other plumbing problems.  No matter the concern, it is best to figure it out early before it becomes a big, expensive problem.

Start your summer by going through this check list:

1. Get to Know the Main Water Valve.

It is always good to know where the main water shutoff to your home is located and how to use it. Some homes have a shutoff valve within the structure, such as the basement, garage or utility closet. Others have one outside in the yard or near the water main in the street, curb or sidewalk. You can also consult a plumber during your next call and ask them to show you where it is.

2. Pinpoint the Pressure.

With all the activity that your shower, washer and other utilities will see in a summer season, it is even more important to maintain good water pressure. You can check and measure the household water pressure with a store-bought gauge that you attach to an outside spigot. Generally, the household standard is 40-45 pounds per square inch.

3. Watch the Washer.

Start your summer with a springtime inspection of the washer and all its parts. Pull it away from the wall and check the connections and appearance of the hoses and replace those that are cracked or look distressed.

4. Check Sprinkler Systems. 

Check sprinkler systems thoroughly for leaks — plus, inspect and clean the sprinkler heads at the beginning of the season. If you find any that are broken, not working, rusted or damaged, you can remove the head and replace it.

5. Save Water, Save Money. 

Dripping water at a rate of 1 drip per second can waste up to 1,661 gallons of water in one year. Some ways to conserve water are  lather hands with the water off, turn water off when you brush your teeth, soak dishes rather than scrubbing dishes with water running, wash the car at a car wash and when buying new appliances, choose Energy Star that signifies efficiency.

6. Consider the Code.

Each project, repair, remodel, etc. that involves plumbing must be done to a certain code of standards, whether you live in a city or rural township. States usually set the code and licensed plumbers know and adhere to it.

Call Eastern Plumbing to help you get ready for summertime and remember, good plumbing makes for a happy summer!

Signs You May Need a New Garbage Disposal

You use your garbage disposal every day.  It will shred food waste and other waste and help keep your kitchen drain pipes clear of debris.  Your garbage disposal may last up to 15 years, however that may not always be the case.  Here are a few ways to tell when you need a new garbage disposal:

1. You hear unusual noises.

Look in your drain to see if something’s blocking it, such as a piece of silverware. If you do find something, remove it carefully and try the disposal again.  If it still makes an unusual noise, give us a call.

2. An odor that will not leave.

Rinse and run your garbage disposal several times to see if the odor goes away. Dropping ice chips into the disposal and turning it on for a minute or so can help clean the blades as well.  If not, there may be particles stuck in the disposal that is causing the smell.  You may need a professional to help remove the trapped particles or replace it altogether.

3. Water is leaking from the disposal.

If this is happening, then it may mean you have a crack in the unit and will likely need a replacement.

4. Your disposal will not turn on.

If you have to press the reset button often, and one day it just will not turn on, it is time for a new one.


Even the best garbage disposal does not last forever. Give us a call if you need a repair or replacement.  We are ready to help!

Plumbing Tips for Spring

As the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers” and the onset of spring, which means it is time for some spring cleaning!  Eastern Plumbing offers these spring plumbing tips to protect your home against possible plumbing problems into the spring and summer!

1. Check Your Water Heater

Check your water heater for any signs of leaks and corrosion. Look for puddles, rust or soot around the control panel. If you see any of these signs, give call us.

2. Check Your Water Valves

You may want to turn off the water valves in your home, then turn them back on again to keep the parts from becoming stuck.

3. Check Your Toilet & Faucets for Leaks

Look for any drips and/or leaks that may need repairs. Also, examine your toilets and tanks for any hidden leaks or cracks and make sure your toilet is not constantly running – a running toilet can run up your water bill.

4. Check Your Sump Pump

With heavy spring rain, it is important to inspect your sump pump to ensure it is functioning smoothly.

5. Clean Your Gutters & Down Spouts

Make sure yard drains, gutters and downspouts are cleaned out and open, and free of debris.

6. Watch for Leaks Connected to Sprinklers & Outdoor Faucets

Outdoor pipes can easily freeze and break over the winter. When outside temperatures heat up, watch your pipes for signs of leaks. If you notice a water leak in your home the first time you turn on your hose or other faucets, this is a sign that one of your pipes froze and broke over the winter.


Eastern Plumbing are your plumbing experts. We can install, replace or repair any of your plumbing needs. Contact us today at 252-758-7579.

Benefits from Regular Plumbing Maintenance

Many people are aware that routine maintenance is required for HVAC and electrical systems, but some will neglect the importance of routine plumbing maintenance and inspections. Ignoring routine maintenance of your plumbing and water systems can catch up to you and lead to an emergency repair.

Plumbing systems can be very expensive so it makes sense to avoid problems through routine maintenance rather than paying for issues one by one as they arise. Waiting for plumbing issues to pop up can cost you in emergency repair fees and subsequent damages, not to mention the headache they can cause you and your family.

Having a professional plumber inspect your system regularly can save you money and improve your lifestyle by:

Preserving the Value of Your Property

Routine plumbing is an important part of maintaining your property and receiving a higher return on your home when you sell. Potential buyers will check many things when preparing their offer on your property. One thing they will check for is the condition of your pipes and their connections. Homes with well-maintained plumbing systems are more likely to receive higher offers from buyers. Molds and mildew from pipe leakages can significantly decrease the value of your home. Damaged walls, floors and foundations due to prolonged plumbing leakages can also result in reduction of property value.

Increasing the Lifespan of Your Plumbing System

Regular maintenance from a professional plumber can help to detect clogged pipes and plumbing leaks before they put pressure on your plumbing system. If these issues are prolonged, they can lead to extensive damage and costly repairs.

Routine drain maintenance can catch small issues before they become big problems. Our plumbers can spot overflowing pipes, pipe clogs and aging pipes early, before further damage occurs.

Water Heater Maintenance

Tank type water heaters should be flushed annually to maintain the manufacturer’s warranty and to flush sediment from the tank. Tankless water heaters should be flushed every 2-4 years depending on usage. Flushing your water heater will help maintain energy efficiency and prolong the lifespan of the water heater.

Saving You Money

Many people think that they are saving money by avoiding plumbing maintenance and checkups under the notion that maintenance is unnecessary. However, the fact is that preventive maintenance can save you time and money. Routine care and maintenance can preserve the integrity of your plumbing system before damage happens. Regular maintenance can be far less expensive than part replacements and also save you money on emergency repairs.

A well-maintained plumbing system can improve how fast your sinks, bathtubs and showers drain. Clogging and buildup can cause your connections to take longer to drain. Slow drainage is more than just annoying, drainage problems should be treated at the earliest opportunity to prevent issues from escalating.

How Often Should I Schedule Maintenance?

How frequently you need to schedule maintenance depends on a few different factors. First, the size of your property, larger properties should be inspected more often due to the amount of pipes in the home and the size of the water systems. Other factors that should be considered are how many people are in your household and how much water is being used by your household. On average, homeowners should consider scheduling a visit from a professional plumber at least once a year.

The professionals at Eastern Plumbing are well trained and knowledgeable on how to repair and maintain any plumbing system. Give us a call at 252-758-7579 for all your plumbing needs from a routine checkup to emergency repairs and replacements.

Maintenance Your Pipes May Need

Many fixtures and devices in your home rely on properly functioning plumbing. You need to be aware of best practices to protect your plumbing fixtures that keep your home running smoothly.

Schedule routine maintenance with a trained plumber to help stay on top of fixtures such as:

  • Sinks and Faucets
  • Toilets, Bathtubs and Showers
  • Water filtration Systems
  • Washing Machines and Dishwasher Lines
  • Water Heaters

Clean water and properly running systems are vital to creating a healthy home or workplace, check that your pipes are in good shape with properly maintained filtration. Hire a plumber you can trust to conduct any system repairs and perform any upgrades your home or workplace may need.

Good Systems Save Money

Preventative care and routine maintenance can save you money by reducing your water bill. It only takes 4,000 drips to fill a liter of water, which means the price of a leaky faucet can add up quick! Small leaks dripping only once an hour can lead to up to 34 gallons of water waste per year.

Routine Maintenance Prevents Mold and Unwanted Moisture

Water waste from leaks and busted pipes can cost you money and cause damages when left standing. Dampness in you walls or other household surfaces can quickly grow mold and pose a health risk to you and your family. If measures are not taken to sanitize your house quickly after mold starts growing, your whole house can become infected with mold spores. These spores are spread around through air conditioning and heating units causing mold to grow outside of the original source.

If left untreated, mold can begin to permeate wood and even grow fungi. Once penetrated by fungi, wood can become structurally damaged and harmful to your health. Cold like symptoms such as runny eyes and cough can be a sign of mold exposure. Individuals with respiratory health issues such as asthma are more susceptible to health issues due to mold and fungus pollution. A well-maintained plumbing system and air system can help keep excess moisture out of your home, protecting you from potential mold spores. If you feel mold may be growing in your home contact a mold removal professional to help.

Address Problems Before They Happen

Take small steps to keep your plumbing system in good shape and avoid emergency visits from a plumber. Many emergency plumbing visits are the result of clogged drains. A slow drain in the kitchen is usually a sign that food has gotten stuck in your drain or pipes. One way to prevent this from happening is to purchase a strainer that sits on top of your kitchen drain. One of these strainers can be purchased at any local grocery store and can catch food before it gets washed down your sink.

Another way to avoid clogged drains is to pour excess oil and grease into a container for disposal after cooking. Never pour oil or grease down your drains. Bathroom drains can also become slow due to build up, typically hair build up. You can avoid hair clogging your drain by purchasing an inexpensive drain stopper for your bathtub or shower. If used properly a simple drain stopper can save you money on clogged drain repairs.

Avoid Frozen Pipes

During colder seasons it is important to take necessary measures to avoid water from freezing inside your pipes. On nights where temperatures are expected to drop below freezing, it is a good idea to maintain water pressure by leaving a faucet dripping overnight. A small steady drip is enough to keep liquid moving inside your pipes so the pipes will not freeze. If your pipes do freeze, reach out to a professional plumber immediately. A plumber can also help you avoid frozen pipes by installing insulation.

Does a Plumber Have to Conduct all of My Maintenance?

Although it may be possible to maintain some of your home’s plumbing fixtures yourself, it is crucial to have a trained plumber to help with repairs, replacements and emergency issues. With the trained professionals at Eastern Plumbing routinely inspecting your home’s water systems, you can be rest assured that your home will be well taken care of and emergencies can be prevented.

Type of Services Offered by Eastern Plumbing

Eastern Plumbing’s services can benefit both residential and commercial buildings. Every homeowner or business owner will eventually encounter an issue with either clean or septic water. That is why eastern plumbing provides services that keep water channeled where it needs to go. With services spanning from installation to repair, maintenance to piping systems, we can fix almost any issue you may encounter.

Our services

Replacements for Old Parts

Even when installed by a professional, toilets, faucets and pipes can suffer wear and tear from daily use. This damage, if ignored, can cause other issues with your property. For example, old pipes are prone to leaks, these leaks can easily go unnoticed and cause damage to your floors, walls and even your foundation! To avoid costly damage, call Eastern Plumbing for all of your part replacements and home water system checkup needs.

Drain Cleaning

Homeowners should always be cautious of what they are putting in their drains to avoid clogging. However, no matter how closely you monitor your drains, dirt and debris can build up in your pipes and begin to clog. These clogs can result in foul odors or even leaks. It is essential to get your drains analyzed and cleaned regularly by a trained professional, like the team at Eastern Plumbing, to avoid further damage.

Inspecting Pipes

When experiencing plumbing issues, you may struggle to determine which pipe is causing your problems. In these situations, it may be necessary to hire a trained professional to inspect your pipes. Inspecting pipes can help determine which pipes are leaking, broken, old or may have a higher chance of bursting. After inspecting, the professional may find that some pipe connections need to be tightened while others need to be repaired. Inspecting your pipes save you from the headache of leaks, or pooling, while keeping your family comfortable and safe.

Modern technology and cameras have given plumbers the ability to see beyond walls, under floors and into plumbing systems. Eastern Plumbing utilizes the latest technology to provide quality service to all of its customers. Our plumbers use cameras to examine drain lines and sewers. This allows them to find blockages and leaks and make necessary repairs before issues escalate.

Installation, Repair and Replacement of Water Heaters

Water heaters are significant plumbing mechanisms that require a trained professional to perform repairs. Plumbing services on water heaters are especially crucial for those residing in multi-story buildings due to the number of pipes and heaters running to each living space. Water heater systems contain water pipes and electrical connections that can be very dangerous when handled by someone untrained.

Sink, Toilet and Faucet Installation

Installation of new or replacement of old toilets, faucets and sinks are crucial to a healthy and happy home. All home plumbing units should remain clean and contain properly functioning equipment.

  • Regular cleaning and repairs to kitchen faucets and drains can keep germs and harmful bacteria from backing up into your sink.
  • Toilet replacement and maintenance can keep septic water from coming back up your pipes.
  • Replacing leaky faucets can save money by reducing your water bill.

All of these can be made possible with the help of a professionally trained plumbing company.

Emergency Plumbing Services

Even with proper maintenance, plumbing emergencies can still happen. That is why Eastern plumbing is here for you through pipe bursts, clogging and leakages. Our speedy repairs can help you avoid further damages and save you money. We are available 24/7 and can help you keep your plumbing in top shape.

Routine Plumbing Maintenance

You do not have to have a problem to give your pipes a checkup. During routine maintenance, your plumber will check to ensure all of your plumbing is operating properly. After your plumber’s analysis they will highlight their results in a checklist. Some of the items on the list may include leaks, testing fixture valves, corrosion, water pressure, inspection of joint and pipes, corrosion and more. A regular inspection can help you understand the state of your home plumbing.

Sewer Lines and Water System Management

When you purchase a home, hire a professional to check and ensure that your sewer system and water lines are working properly. A water efficient system can help save you money and proper sewage drainage can help keep your home healthy and safe.

At Eastern Plumbing, we pride ourselves on providing professional maintenance, installation and upkeep. Our background checked; trained plumbers use advanced technologies to help you with all of your plumbing needs. Call us today at 252-758-7579.

How to Unclog a Kitchen Sink

No one wants to deal with a clogged kitchen sink, whether it’s a slow drain issue or fully clogged. At some point you will probably find yourself in a situation where the clog is tougher than drain cleaner (which we do not recommend you using!) And what could make it more complicated is if the item causing the clog is something important that was accidentally dropped in the drain and you are hoping to get back.

Here are a couple quick things you can try, but to prevent damage we always suggest calling in the professionals.

1. DIY Drain Cleaner: How to Clear a Slow Draining Kitchen Sink Clog

Chemical drain cleaners are not good for your pipes or the environment, and they can be expensive! You can use vinegar and baking soda for an environmentally friendly solution. Follow these steps:

  • Remove kitchen sink drain cover or sink stopper
  • Pour ½ cup baking soda in drain
  • Pour 1 cup white vinegar in drain
  • Wait 10 minutes & then pour boiling water down drain

Often times the chemical reaction from this solution is enough to dissolve the slow drain and repair the clogged drain.

2. Directions for Plunging a Clogged Kitchen Sink

This method is best to use for standing water clogs. Remember, use a kitchen plunger rather than a bathroom plunger to avoid spreading germs. Follow these steps:

  • If you have a double sink, then make sure to plug up the sink drain on the opposite side with a wet rag to help deliver pressure directly to the clog.
  • Fill the clogged side of sink with a small amount of water for the plunger.
  • Start plunging (remember it is all about the up motion, not pushing down). Hopefully, any food or paper products locked in the pipes will budge when you do this.
  • If plunging won’t fix the problem, you do have a few other options for resolving a clogged kitchen sink.

3. Use a Drain Snake to Clear Out the Clog

If the above methods did not work, then the clog may be farther down the drain so you will need to follow these steps:

  • Run a drain snake down the kitchen drain. These can be purchased at your local hardware store.
  • If this still doesn’t work, try taking the trap beneath the sink apart and snake the drain more directly. Be sure to put a bucket beneath the trap to catch any dirty water. Then begin snaking the drain.

4. Use a Wet Vacuum or “Shop Vac”

Wet and dry vacuums have a lot of suction.

  • Set a wet vacuum to “liquids” and cover the vent
  • Create a tight seal around the drain and cover the overflow tube with your finger or a rag.

       The power of a wet vacuum can often be enough to draw the clogged material up and unclog the drain. Check the bag to identify the source of the clog.  A wet vacuum can also work when you need to recover jewelry from a drain.

5. Last Step:  Call in a Professional Plumber

When you have tried everything and nothing has worked, it is time to call a licensed plumber like Eastern Plumbing at 252-758-7579.

How to Maintain a Water Heater

One of the most important parts of your home is your water heater. It provides hot showers, clean dishes, and fresh laundry, so if it breaks on you, it could create some big issues. The average lifespan of a water heater is about 11 years, but without proper maintenance it might not make it that long. Here are some things you can do to keep it working for as long as possible:

Check the Temperature

Pay attention to your water heater’s thermostat. A lot of manufacturers set the temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit by default, which is hotter than most households need. This can cause scalding, as well as accelerated mineral buildup and corrosion in the pipes. To help prevent you tank from damage, a recommended setting for water heater maintenance is no more than 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

Perform a Mini Flush on Your Tank

It is a good idea to flush out about one-quarter of the tank in your water heater a few times each year. This can easily be done by turning off the cold-water supply, hooking up a garden hose to the drain valve and then running the water until it looks clear. Draining the tank will help clear away sediment and maintain the heating efficiency of your water heater.

If this isn’t something you’ve ever done, or feel comfortable doing, call the professionals at Eastern Plumbing to help – but our first tip is to make sure you turn off the power or gas supply for safety before beginning.

Test the Pressure Relief Valve

A pressure relief valve that is working properly should release a burst of hot water into the drainpipe after you raise and then lower the test lever. This should be done regularly to check the pressure and to clear out debris.  If the valve isn’t letting out a big burst each time, then you need to call a professional plumber to get a new one installed.

Water heaters are complex and require regular maintenance. If you have any problems that you cannot solve yourself, call Eastern Plumbing and let us take care of it for you.

Plumbing Safety Tips for Kids

It is just a fact of life that kids are curious. But when it comes to their favorite toy swimming in the toilet, it is probably time to teach them some plumbing safety. You should show your kids what to do, and not do, but also show them safety measures they can use in case of an emergency.

Safety:  Water Valve

As kids get older, they could find themselves at home alone. Go ahead and show them where the water valve cut off is located. So, in case of an emergency, like a flooded basement or overflowing toilet, they can shut it off.

Safety:  Tools for the Job

We think kids should know the basic difference in what tools are used for different things such as plumbing, carpentry and mechanics. Some common tools used for plumbing include a plunger, basin wrench, plumber or drain snake and a pipe wrench. Just like being able to change a car’s tire can come in handy, knowing how to use these tools could prevent, or stop, any future accidents.

Safety:  Toilet & Sink are Backed Up

Kids can be taught at an early age how to identify and remedy a backed-up sink and toilet. First of all, teach them what can and cannot go in the toilet before they start wanting to watch their toys swim. 

Parents, no matter what the packaging says, DO NOT flush baby wipes! They don’t break down like toilet paper, so you will end up with a backed-up sewage tank. And teach your children not to flush Q-tips, cotton swabs or feminine hygiene products down the toilet. This can lead to septic tank issues which could end up costing you thousands of dollars.

The same approach can be applied to the garbage disposal. Much like the toilet, there are things that do not belong in your garbage disposal. Some kids may like to hear the sound of the grinder tearing up food, but everything isn’t meant for the disposal or your pipes. Some of these include celery, coffee grounds, eggshells, grease, bones, and pasta – just to name a few!

Safety:  Water Heater

Your teens should know how to turn off the water heater, especially if your home has a gas water heater. For electric water heaters, there should be a breaker in the panel box that can shut it off with the flick of a switch.

Another safety issue to teach kids with regards to water heaters is storage, what can and cannot be stored by the water heater.  Toys, paints and solvents and combustible items can start a fire if they are stored too close to the water heater.

At Home Water Science Activities for Kids

Are you looking for fun and interactive outdoor projects to work on with your kids? Then start by gathering some everyday items from around your home so you and your kids can perform these simple water science projects. Teach your kids the science of water with these fun projects!

1. Basic Water Science Experiments

    • Floating vs. sinking: Gather some of your child’s favorite toys along with other household items — measuring cups, plastic toy animals, small plastic cars, blocks, an egg, and coffee filters. Fill a bowl with water and drop the items into the bowl to see which sink and which  float. Older children can make predictions about which they think will sink or float.

For an advanced water science trick, show how the egg sinks when placed into the water alone but floats when sitting on the coffee filter.

    • Air bubbles: Show the magic of water by experimenting with air bubbles submerged in water. Stuff a piece of a paper towel into the bottom of a small cup. Then, with the top down, submerge the cup in the water inside a bowl. When you take it out of the water, have your child try to explain how the paper towel stays dry.
    • Colored bubbles: Drop food coloring down the side of a clear cup. Submerge the cup, top down, into the bowl or tub of water. Watch as the colored dye dissolves into the water, but above, the air bubble stays in place.

2. An Anti-Gravity Water Trick

You will only need a glass, a t-shirt and water for this science trick. To begin, place the cloth over the mouth of the glass, then use your finger to press a slight indent into the fabric. This will help the glass fill with water and dampen the material. Then, fill the glass about three-quarters full of water, and pull the fabric tight over the cup.

At this point, you have two options — either flip the glass quickly, using one hand to hold the fabric tightly, or place one hand over the top and use the other to hold the material and slowly turn the glass upside down. Either way, you will notice the water will not pour out. This trick uses gravity and the high surface tension in water to keep everything in place using the cloth. Now, see what happens to the water if you dab detergent or other liquids on the cloth.

3. The Pepper and Water Experiment

The pepper and water science experiment explores the surface tension of water. For this project, you will need a shallow dish, pepper, dishwashing liquid, and water.

Fill the dish with water and sprinkle pepper over the top, then dip your finger in the water — nothing will happen. Then, do the same with a bit of detergent on the tip of your finger, and watch as the pepper retreats to the edges of the plate. With the detergent addition, the surface tension of the water is lowered.

We hope you enjoyed these experiments with your children, for common or emergency plumbing services and installation, call Eastern Plumbing! Our experienced technicians are available 24/7 at 252-758-7579.

Teaching Kids About Plumbing

Teaching kids about plumbing is a great way for them to learn helpful skills like conserving water and other responsible behaviors.

At an early age kids are fascinated with water, toilets, and everything else they can get their hands on. Teach them what is and is not okay to do in the bathroom to help prevent plumbing issues in the future.

Kids should be taught not to flush:

  • Toys – it’s okay to play with toys in the bathtub, it’s not okay to give the toys a bath in the toilet
  • Wipes – baby wipes, cleaning wipes, “flushable” wipes
  • Q-Tips – they are small, but they can still cause an obstruction in the pipes
  • Dental Floss – it can snag into something and cause blockage.
  • Hair – hair from the shower drain or the hair brush should go in the trash.
  • Diapers – Kids who are learning to potty train should be taught not to take off their diaper and put it in the toilet.

Extra tip: As kids brush their teeth, make sure they keep the water off until they are ready to rinse, this helps the family conserve water and helps lower the utility bill.

Kids who are old enough to do dishes

Helping out can be fun and instills good habits early on. Make sure they know:

  • What NOT to put down the garbage disposal (bones and grease.) You can put food such as  pasta and pieces of veggies in the disposal, but in moderation. This means not a whole pot of pasta or whole carrots😊
  • How to properly clean the dishes before loading them into the dish washer.
  • To only run the dishwasher when full which helps save water.

Old enough to be home alone

Giving your kids independence also means giving them responsibility. When they are home alone, make sure they know how to:

  • Shut the water off  in case there is an emergency leak.
  • Plunge the Toilet if it becomes clogged.
  • Plunge the sink if it backs up.

Teaching kids to be independent and teaching them how to handle simple plumbing issues will be helpful for you  now and in the future. We hope that you will never need us, but if you do, Eastern Plumbing is available 24/7 for all your emergency needs.

At Home Outdoor Water Activities for Kids

With summer comes more hours of daylight for families to be outdoors. So, now’s the perfect time to try these low-budget water activities to add some family fun, and with the help of your outdoor plumbing.

These fun outdoor activities are sure way to bring a smile to you and your kids, as well as keep them occupied for hours.

Slip Sliding Fun

One low-cost way to have fun outdoors is running through the sprinklers. It is not only fun for the young but also the young at heart – we dare you not to smile like a little kid!
Running through the sprinklers can be fun for the entire family and will also keep the yard looking green. If you don’t have a sprinkler, the kids can take turns holding a finger over the hose to make your own sprayer, or you can buy a hose nozzle with different settings.
It’s also easy to set up a homemade water slide for your kids and their friends by laying out a big sheet of plastic or a tarp, then spraying it down & keeping it wet, and rubbing it with some dish detergent or shampoo to make it slippery. What a fun way to stay cool!

Hose Fight Alternative

With these hot days, it might be tempting to have a water hose fight. But, since Eastern Plumbing is interested in helping you save money on your water bill, we are suggesting water gun fights instead! This is just as fun and will save you water and money in the process.

Not only do water guns allow for more strategic fun, they also use less water than a hose. As an added bonus, water guns are much easier to run away with and avoid attacks.

Water Balloon Battle

Another great activity is a water balloon fight. You can make teams of boys vs. girls, parents vs. kids or just throw water balloons at each other! Much like the hose vs. water guns issue, using water balloons also saves water.
Whether it is a friendly competition or not, water balloon fights are a great activity for family and friends alike and offer the same fun a snowball fight would offer in the winter.
So, this summer, we hope you will find time to enjoy these fun water activities we’ve shared with you! At Eastern Plumbing we want you to make the most of the hottest days of the summer, and just maybe this will become a new family tradition.

Using a Plunger Your Sink

We know, we know, that title may sound a little funny. You may have never thought about using a plunger on your sink. The plunger is just for the toilet, right? But when you have a clogged sink, what do you do about it? We’ve heard of pouring hot water down the drain, using chemicals, and even trying to fish out the clog with a hanger. While some of these may work, more often than not a plunger is actually the best option for your sink. A plunger is a great option for unclogging drains all around your home, provided you know what you are doing.

Remember, plungers are not a one-size-fits-all tool. You need to use the right one for the job. When using a plunger on the sink, we recommend using one that is flat on the bottom, as opposed to a protruding flange plunger. Because sinks are flat on the bottom, using a flat plunger as well will help create a tight seal.

Once you feel you have a tight seal, gently compress the plunger, and use force to pull it back up. Continue this even up-and-down motion. The suction from the plunger will pull the clog up and out of the sink, as opposed to becoming further stuck in the drain. Once the clog is freed, run hot water for several minutes to flush any debris down the drain. This can dissolve soap scum and help prevent new clogs from forming.

Even if you correctly use a plunger on your sink, you may still find that the drain is clogged. This is common! Don’t start taking the whole sink apart to remove the clog though. Instead, call the experts at Eastern Plumbing in Greenville and New Bern, NC. Our professionally trained plumbers have the knowledge to handle this job. Remember, when plungers are not getting the job done, a local professional is just a phone call away!