The Biggest Plumbing Myths – Busted

They have been passed down from generation to generation, but it is time to put a stop to the unnecessary damage and learn the truth behind some of the biggest plumbing myths around. The guide below will help you understand how to maintain your plumbing system and keep the plumbing folklore from ruining your efforts!

Some of the biggest plumbing myths busted:

Myth #1: Lemon is a Natural Way to Clean Your Garbage Disposal

While it may seem like a good idea to freshen up your smelly disposal by running a lemon through it, a lemon will only temporarily take care of the smell and wont actually give your disposal the cleaning it needs. Lemon peels can also be very damaging to your disposal blades. If you are looking for a way to rid yourself of the smell and want to thoroughly clean your disposal without damaging it you’ll need to use warm water, soap, and a brush. If you are looking for a great natural way to clean your disposal try opting in for an all natural soap instead. Before you get to cleaning, make sure to disconnect the disposal from its power source then you are free to clean away!

Myth #2: Running Water While Using the Garbage Disposal Helps the Disposal Function Smoothly

Probably one of the most common plumbing myths is that running water while using the garbage disposal will always help the disposal function smoothly. While this is generally true and most foods, in moderation, can be put down the garbage disposal, many homeowners believe that they can put just about ANYTHING down their garbage disposals as long as they run water. The truth is, certain items should never be put down your disposal, no matter how much water you run. Non-food items and hard or thick foods can severely damage your disposal. Below is a list of some of the biggest disposal no no’s.

Disposal No No’s:
  • large bones
  • coffee grounds
  • egg shells
  • fruit pits
  • grease
  • banana peels
  • any non-food items

Myth #3: If It Seems To Be Working, It’s Working

Just because everything seems to be working as it should, doesn’t mean it is. We have all heard it and/or experienced it, just “jiggle the handle.” Sometimes, the water in your pipes just runs a little slower or it takes a slight adjustment to get the water in your toilet to stop running. These little ‘tricks’ may seem like minor inconveniences now but your plumbing could be on the brink of failure. If your faucets are gradually losing water pressure, there could be tiny leaks and cracks setting you up for a serious situation shortly down the line. If your drains are running slower than usual, they could be getting blocked by debris which can lead to a more serious clog if left unattended. A home’s plumbing system is delicate and even seemingly minor issues can throw the entire system out of order. So, next time you go to “jiggle the handle” on your toilet remember that “if it seems to be working, it’s working,” is just another common plumbing myth.

Myth #4: In Tank Toilet Cleaners Will Keep Your Toilet Clean

Cleaning a dirty bathroom isn’t exactly an appealing job and cleaning the toilet in that dirty bathroom can seem even less appealing. Given the dirty nature of bathrooms, and toilets in particular, it only makes sense that we want to find a fast and easy way to clean them. That’s why many people choose to use the drop-in tank toilet cleaners. While they might look like they are cleaning your toilet on the surface, tank toilet cleaners actually cause more trouble and damage than good. Plastic and rubber parts, such as the gaskets and washers are highly susceptible to corrosion and wear from these cleaners. After using tank toilet cleaners for some time your toilet can start leaking and stop flushing properly. Don’t fall for the tank toilet cleaner myth and try cleaning your toilet manually on a regular basis, directly in the bowl, with cleansers and a brush.

Myth #5: A Leaky Faucet is Nothing to Worry About

For most people a leaky faucet isn’t a big deal, despite this myth, leaky faucets are actually a major signal for potential underlying problems with your plumbing system. All faucets in your house should maintain proper water pressure and should be free from leaks and drips. On top of the potential for underlying problems, ignoring the dripping from your faucet will cost you extra on your water bill. According to National Geographic, leaks contribute to about 14% of your average water use each day. Which means that leaky faucet, that didn’t seem like such a big deal, is actually costing you some real money. If you notice a drip in your faucet, even a small and slow one, don’t ignore it. Bust this myth and have a professional fix your leaky faucet so you can stop your money from going down the drain.

Myth #7: All Plumbers Are Exactly the Same

Many people assume that all plumbers are the same or that a ‘handy man’ can handle the job, however it is important to pick a respected company that you know you can trust in order to be satisfied! You should only accept experienced professionals when it comes to the plumbing in your house so you know the job will be done right the first time.Through quality service, the use of proper plumbing practices, and implementing the newest technologies to provide more energy efficient plumbing practices, Eastern Plumbing has established itself as one of the strongest plumbing companies in eastern North Carolina. Don’t trust your pipes to just anyone when you can count on the experienced professionals at Eastern Plumbing!

We’re available 24/7 for any plumbing emergency, contact Eastern Plumbing today.

All Natural Cleaners – Ingredients & Recipes

Natural cleaners and ingredients can help you save time, money and make your home safer. Each appliance and surface requires a different type of cleaner. It is important to realize that these natural options are only meant for certain appliances and surfaces. Below is a list of some of the most popular natural cleaners as well as some recipes.

Ingredients

These individual ingredients have many uses when used alone. These can be found in grocery stores, home improvement stores and most of these could probably be found in your home right now!

Lemons

Lemons have strong cleaning properties in addition to a great, clean scent. This can be used in multipurpose cleaners as well as refrigerators and floors.

Vinegar

Vinegar can be used to clean because of its bacteria killing properties. Specifically, white vinegar can be used all around the house to clean surfaces like the toilet, microwave and countertops. Vinegar can be mixed with water in a spray bottle for easy application.

Baking soda

Baking soda has natural cleaning and deodorizing qualities to make it a very effective alternative to chemicals. It can be sprinkled on the surface or a sponge and used to clean the sink, oven or your grill.

Borax

Borax can be used to clean carpets and pests. It can also be used to get outdoor furniture ready for the summer and to clean the garbage disposal.

Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is non-toxic and a natural bleaching and cleaning agent. It has many uses; like disinfecting, removing mold, washing carpets, floors and windows and even mouthwash!

Essential oils

Natural essential oils have two important qualities that can boost any natural cleaning recipe; their natural scent and their cleaning properties. They are naturally non-toxic while still being effective at killing germs.

Recipes

Using all-natural ingredients, these recipes are non-toxic and are safe for use in the home. There are no harmful chemicals in these recipes that could lead to health hazards for you, your family or your pets.

All purpose cleaner 

Hydrogen peroxide, lavender essential oil, lemon essential oil and peppermint essential oil

Carpet Cleaner 

Baking soda and Borax powder

Glass Cleaner 

Hot water, cornstarch, rubbing alcohol and white vinegar

Drain Cleaner

Boiling water, baking soda and white vinegar

Laundry Soap 

Borax, Washing soda and organic/homemade soap

Air Freshener 

Baking soda and essential oil of choice

Liquid Drain Cleaners – Risks

When it comes to unclogging your drains, liquid drain cleaners are easiest. They are effective and time efficient. But while they save time now, they will cost you later. After several uses, liquid chemical drain cleaners can have damaging effects to you and your plumbing.

Dangers of Chemical Cleaners

Liquid drain cleaners can have negative effects on your drains and health. Each liquid cleaner is different in its chemical makeup and its subsequent effects.

Drains

Because liquid chemical cleaners are designed to dissolve things like hair and fingernails, they can cause damage to unwanted things as well. If they get on surrounding wood or countertops, this could result in damages. Damage to your pipes themselves can also be a side effect. The chemicals in the cleaner can eat away at the pipes and result in corrosion and weakening. The bigger the clog the greater the effects due to the length of time the chemicals are stagnant and “eating.” So while the clog may have been fixed, over time this could lead to a much bigger problem down the road.

Health

Due to the harmful effects chemical drain cleaners have on steel pipes, it is not farfetched to realize they can have harmful effects on you as well. The same chemicals that can eat away at clogs and pipes can have detrimental effects on your skin, clothes and anything it touches. The main ingredient in most chemical drain cleaners is either sodium hydroxide or sulphuric acid. Both of these are highly toxic and can lead to severe health problems if ingested by swallowing or breathing. If the chemicals get on your skin or eyes, burns and blindness can occur.

There can also be very harmful effects if chemical drain cleaners mix with other household chemicals. This can happen with something already poured down the drain or something nearby. When this happens, there is a chance of an explosive reaction that can cause any number of issues and concerns.

Better Alternatives

Instead of risking the health of your pipes and body, choose one of the alternatives to liquid chemical drain cleaners.

Enzyme Cleaners

Enzyme drain cleaners are safer liquid drain cleaners that do not contain harmful chemicals. These cleaners contain bacteria that interact with the clogs and break them down. These concentrated enzymes also kill the organic matter that can cause bad odor.  While these might be slower than chemical cleaners, they are safer to pipes and you.

Another advantage of enzyme cleaners is that they are biodegradable and environmentally-friendly. Once these bacteria are sprayed or poured, they activate and start to multiply. After the job is done, these bacteria die and are completely safe for the environment.

Physical De-Cloggers

Unclogging your drain physically yourself is much safer than chemical drain cleaners. There are no chemicals involved or harmful side effects. This can be done with a plunger, drain snake or physically removing the pipe among other methods. This eliminates the risk of pouring something down the drain.

Contact a Professional

Clogged drains can be a very tricky problem. The best solution is to enlist the help of a professional. Contact Eastern Plumbing today and we’ll get you up and running normally.

4 Reasons to Hire a Professional Drain Cleaner

With summer quickly approaching, your home’s plumbing drains are more susceptible to being clogged. Kids are home from school and will most likely get into some mischief around the house. Beach trips have become the norm and washing off sand in the shower can build up over time. Bathroom drains seem like an easy thing to fix yourself, but there are many benefits to leaving the task to a professional drain cleaner like Eastern Plumbing.

  1. Safety.
    Chemical cleansers are dangerous and can lead to serious injury if not handled with care. Even store-bought tools won’t perform an adequate job and can also be hazardous without proper training. An experienced plumber like Eastern Plumbing handles hundreds of clogged drains every year and knows how to treat the issue safely.
  2. Efficiency.
    Store-bought solutions don’t always treat the clog the way it should. In many cases, the clog can lead to more plumbing issues down the line. Professionals have access to speciality equipment and can treat the clog right the first time.
  3. Saves money.
    When you use chemical cleansers, you could potentially damage plumbing pipes or other components of your system. This can lead to costly repairs. Eastern Plumbing is licensed and bonded and offers quality work, ensuring that your pipes aren’t inadvertently damaged while repairing a drain.
  4. Experience.
    Having a properly working drain is an important part of our daily lives. When your drain gets backed up, it makes simple household tasks more difficult. When choosing a drain cleaning service, it’s wise to choose a well reviewed, experienced, established and insured service. If you choose not to hire a professional, you could end up spending a lot more money in the long run.
If you have a clogged drain in your kitchen or bathroom, give the experts at Eastern Plumbing a call. We have the experience and skills to fix the problem right the first time, every time.

7 Bad Home Plumbing Habits to Avoid

Plumbing chores are a routine household issue that everybody has to endure every now and then. Your plumbing system is critical to your home. Much like any sophisticated operation, it has rules that must be followed if you want it to run smoothly. There are some common mistakes you may not realize you are making until serious damage has occurred to your plumbing. Are you guilty of these bad home plumbing habits?

1. Leaving outside hoses connected.

A hose that is left attached to an outdoor faucet in extreme winter weather can become damaged, which may result in a leak when warmer spring weather comes. The damage usually requires a new water tap. In addition, the hose may degrade if it goes through many winter freezes.

2. Overusing drain cleaner.

Drain cleaners may seem like an effective and affordable solution to getting rid of blockages in drains if you use them carefully. When you are cleaning a drain, make sure you don’t use too much or you could corrode the drain and make the blockage worse.

3. Damaging hidden pipes.

When working on home improvement projects, don’t forget to consider where hidden plumbing pipes are located while using an electric drill, screwdriver or hammer on your drywall. If you are not careful, you can puncture a pipe, which may result in water pouring out of the wall.

4. Contaminating a septic system.

Be careful about pouring harsh chemicals or cleaner down your drain, including chlorine bleach, paint and anti-bacterial soaps. They can disrupt waste-eating bacteria in your septic tank, resulting in a sewage backup. Septic systems rely on healthy bacteria in the tank to function effectively.

5. Misusing garbage disposal.

If you have a garbage disposal in your kitchen, you know it’s a useful appliance that makes chores less strenuous. However, disposals are not trashcans. If not maintained properly, a garbage disposal can break down, block and clog drains. Read your manufacturer’s manual to find out what is and isn’t acceptable to put in your disposal.

6. Careless use of kitchen sink.

When washing dishes, it may be tempting to pour food scraps down the sink. Oils and fats should not be poured down the drain, as they will harden as they cool and block drains. Not only will you need to call a plumber, but it will also cause a terrible smell. A sink strainer is able to prevent this from happening.

7. Improper toilet flushing.

One of the most common plumbing emergencies is a blocked toilet. Never flush feminine products, wet wipes, cotton balls or q-tips. If a waste pipe becomes blocked, this may result in other pipes in your system blocking up. Anything other than human waste and toilet paper should go in a trashcan.

The best way to avoid costly repairs is to prevent problems in the first place. Make sure you explain proper plumbing procedures to all members of your household, especially young children. If you find yourself with a plumbing problem, you can trust us at Eastern Plumbing for prompt and professional solutions.