Platinum Plumbing

Do You Need a Plumber To Get Ready for your Summer Parties?

Have a Raging Block Party Without Fear of (Pipe) Blocks!

Every neighbor is looking forward to the party of the summer! While they’re making their famous potato salad, the host is busy arranging entertainment, decor, and the fireworks display as put on by the five college guys who volunteered to create something “totally sick.” One of the planning pieces that should not fall to the wayside is prepping the house’s plumbing.

The Necessity of a Garbage Disposal

Person installing garbage disposalThe food waste disposal unit that accompanies many a kitchen sink is perhaps one of the most neglected and underrated appliances in the entire house. Homeowners rarely think of it unless something malfunctions. The garbage disposal, when used properly, breaks up any food particles that might cause clogs in the drain. This makes less food mess to clean up and can help with odors from the trash.

There are several things to consider when getting or replacing a garbage disposal, but it is not difficult to find the right one for a particular need.

  • Continuous Feed: This type of disposal can have items fed into it in one long stream.
  • Batch Feed: This disposal only grinds in parcels and typically requires that a stopper be placed in order to run. This is a good safety precaution if there are children in a home.

Check Gas Lines: Only Fireworks Should Explode

A natural gas leak can lead to a costly gas bill and be detrimental to physical health and property. Early detection of a gas leak can prevent any of these issues. An easy test for gas line leaks is spraying joints with a soapy water mixture. Bubbles forming at the connection indicate that there is a leak. Below are a few other signs of gas leaks.

  • The Rotten Egg Smell: The smell of methane is the first sign of a leak in a gas line.
  • Hissing Sound: Hearing a seemingly sourceless hissing may come from the gas lines.
  • Flames Flickering or Wrong Color: If the gas stove has flames that flicker or are orange instead of blue, there is likely oxygen in the lines that should not be there.

If a gas leak is suspected, the best solution is to call a plumber or the gas company to investigate.

Is the Bathroom Ready for Heavy Traffic?

Folded towels sitting on a bathroom counterOne of the issues that accompanies a gettogether is lots of people using the bathroom. Any party with food and drinks is bound to produce heavy traffic to that area of the house. A malfunctioning toilet is sure to cause embarrassment for both the homeowner and their visitors. If a homeowner is having trouble with their current commode, it might be a good time to switch to a more powerful and more eco-friendly version such as the dual flush or pressure-assisted toilet.

About Platinum Plumbing

Platinum Plumbing, serving the greater Bloomington/Normal area of Illinois, prides itself on highly personalized service and technical know-how. Their up-front pricing and friendly service will keep their customers returning with every plumbing problem. Give them a call today for top-notch plumbing services in Bloomington and Normal!

Back at School With Plumbing 101

Back at School With Plumbing 101

Plumbing for Beginners

From a clogged drain to a leaky faucet to a running toilet, all homeowners have experienced plumbing issues in their houses. But it’s important to understand exactly how a home’s plumbing system works so that large problems can be avoided and small issues can be quickly (and cost-effectively) repaired. The following “Plumbing 101” should arm all homeowners with the basic plumbing knowledge they need to keep their systems functioning properly.

How Does a Plumbing System Work?sink water

Whether a home is connected to a public water supply or gets its water from a local well, all water enters the plumbing system through the main intake pipe. Connected to this intake pipe is the home’s main water shut-off valve. Every homeowner should know exactly where the main shut-off valve is located, as this will often be the first line of defense when a serious plumbing issue occurs.

Turning the valve clockwise will stop the flow of water throughout the house, meaning no appliances (dishwasher, refrigerator, etc.) or fixtures (toilets, sinks, showers, etc.) will be able to output anything. This is especially important to remember when something is leaking.

At the other end of a home’s plumbing system is the main sewer line, where all fixtures and appliances drain their used water. This main sewer line is a large-diameter pipe that connects directly to the public sewer or a home’s private septic tank. Unfortunately, this main sewer line can become clogged just like a drain or a toilet, though luckily, it is less common. When multiple appliances and fixtures show signs of a slow or clogged drain, it may be time to inspect the main sewer line.

Essential Plumbing Fixtures and Appliances

Central to every home’s plumbing system are the fixtures and appliances that homeowners use every single day. Common bathroom fixtures include showers, baths, sinks, and toilets. These fixtures are connected to the main plumbing system (the intake pipe for its new water supply and the sewer line for its waste disposal). Common appliances that rely on a home’s plumbing system include washing machines, dishwashers, and water heaters. Each of these fixtures and appliances has its own recommended maintenance steps and common points of failure to be mindful of.

Understanding the Basics of Drain Cleaningdrain

Drains are perhaps the most frequent points of concern in a plumbing system. These fixtures can cause significant (and possibly costly) problems, from slow drains to clogged drains to leaky drains. That’s why it’s critical to properly and frequently clean drains. And it’s important to not forget about shower and bath drains which are just as likely to need draining cleaning as sink drains.

When cleaning a drain, it’s important for homeowners not to cause damage to the plumbing system along the way. For example, some over-the-counter drain cleaners can be harsh on pipes and actually damage them to the point of leaking. Additionally, snakes and other hard cleaning tools can scrape or scratch pipes with long-lasting consequences.

The best way to avoid any issues and ensure the plumbing system flows properly is to work with a local plumbing and drain cleaning company.

About Platinum Plumbing

Platinum Plumbing provides professional and reliable plumbing services throughout McClean County, IL, including all of Bloomington-Normal and the surrounding areas. They focus on providing top-notch repair and maintenance services by experienced plumbers. They will get the job done right at a great price, which is why they have received the Best of Readers’ choice award for Bloomington-Normal by Pantagraph Media. Call now for plumbing services!

save your kitchen this thanksgiving

Don’t Wait Until a Kitchen Plumbing Mishap to Be Thankful for Garbage Disposals!

Thanksgiving is the Busy Season for Kitchen Sink Plumbing

On the first Thanksgiving, pilgrims were thankful for a safe voyage and the bounty of food offered to them in the New World. Since then, the observance of a Thanksgiving holiday has grown so that people are inclined to be thankful for many more things. One of the things that Pilgrims didn’t even know to be thankful for was a garbage disposal. Cleaning up after the first Thanksgiving feast was probably easier than it is today because modern-day celebrations must keep in mind the needs of the kitchen plumbing and make the necessary accommodations, like making sure the garbage disposal is ready for the big day.

This year, stay thankful for all things, including the garbage disposal. Check the disposal before the big meal to make sure it can keep up and schedule garbage disposal installation or repair if necessary. This quick guide from local plumbers can help!

drain Clogged Drain Prevention

The Pilgrims didn’t have sinks to protect, but modern-day Pilgrims need all the help they can get to make Thanksgiving go smoothly. One of the things that can disrupt festivities is a clogged sink, and the garbage disposal is the only thing that stands in the way. Garbage disposals are powerful appliances that grind up food waste and allow it to pass through the piping in a sink drain more easily.

When food isn’t ground up before being flushed into plumbing, it can cling to the sides of the pipes and slowly build up. The resulting clogs can be notoriously difficult to remove and result in a kitchen sink that won’t drain. Simply by having a working garbage disposal, this possibility can be eliminated entirely, and homeowners can focus on celebrating instead.

Practice Gratitude With These Maintenance Tips

Even if the garbage disposal is working fine, there are a few good things that homeowners can do to ensure that it will stay working for years to come. By implementing a few good practices, homeowners can have continued confidence in their garbage disposal. Some ideas to help it along are:

  • Throw Out the Grease: Grease should never be discarded down the drain, even with a garbage disposal.
  • Toss Eggshells in the Trash: An old myth exists that asserts eggshells sharpen the disposal’s blades. This is false. Additionally, the membrane inside the eggshell can tangle around the blades and throw them off balance.
  • Always Run the Water: When flushing food scraps down the sink, always run water with them to keep things moving.
  • Throw Vegetable Skins in the Trash: Onion and potato skins don’t grind well and can still cause clogs even after running through the disposal.

Signs Garbage Disposal Repair is Necessarygarbage disposal

Even with meticulous maintenance and good practices, garbage disposals can still develop problems. When a disposal is having trouble, most of the time, the signs are obvious. Some of the signs the garbage disposal needs attention are:
  • Even louder grinding noises than usual
  • A soft humming instead of normal grinding
  • No power at all
  • Needing to reset the overload numerous times

Scheduling repairs as soon as deficiencies are noted can prevent holiday disasters. Be sure to ask for help as soon as possible.

About Platinum Plumbing

Platinum Plumbing lends its experience to customers in Bloomington. With 5-star service, they aim to exceed their customers’ expectations at every turn. Their customers enjoy their fast service and flat-rate pricing. Call now for plumbing service.

Check Out the First Black Female To Become a Master Plumber

Meet the African-American Plumbing Pioneer- Adrienne Bennett

Many people see plumbing as a male’s work. More and more, women in the industry are changing that perception. Adrienne Bennett is one of the trailblazers of the industry. She became the first black woman to become a master plumber, shattering several glass ceilings along the way.

Throughout her career, Bennett believed in herself and maintained a passion for excelling. She did not stop at becoming the first black female master plumber; she also became a CEO.

The Story of a Black Master Plumber

adrienne bennettAdrienne Bennett is the fourth of eight siblings who love to put together the Apollo spacecraft module. She was taught to always do a good job at a young age and ensure she finished whatever she started. This ideology and her interest in how things work made her take a bold step in the positive direction. She enrolled in an entry-level training program with an engineering firm in Detroit.

There, she had a revolutionary encounter with a worker. This encounter made her discard the idea of attending college to become a mechanical Engineer. She did some odd jobs for a few years working as an advocate for people on public assistance programs. The 1976 election rally for Jimmy Carter allowed her to meet Gus Dowels from the Mechanical Contractors Association of Detroit.

Dowels were out to recruit minority women, as he was working with a federally-sponsored apprenticeship program for skilled trades. The young Bennett took the admission test into the five-year apprenticeship program with the Plumbers’ Union, Local 98, at 22years. She met backlash, bullying, and hostility from her male peers as she started excelling and earning praise from their instructors.

Her Past and Present Positions

With determination and hard work, Adrienne worked her way through different ranks of the plumbing industry. As a woman plumber, she has held several jobs ranging from an apprentice to journeyman plumber and then to master plumber. She also worked as a project manager, plumbing inspector, and code enforcement officer for the City of Detroit for a decade.

Adrienne Bennett, an Independent Contractor

team of contractorsWith the various experience and knowledge gathered from these positions, Adrienne thought of taking the next step in her career. Irrespective of the challenges and barriers, she decided to become an independent contractor.

At the age of 30, the master plumber opened a company in Detroit, Benkari LLC, with her son-A.K Bennett. She became the first black female master plumber and CEO in the United States, running an independent contracting business.

About Platinum Plumbing Inc.

Platinum Plumbing Inc. is a 5-star rated residential plumbing company in Bloomington, IL, with licensed technicians. They offer high-quality plumbing services regardless of whether the job is small or big with competitive pricing. Their services range from maintenance, installation, repairs, and replacements.

Green Plumbing Tips To Try This St. Patrick’s Day

Three Eco-Friendly Habits That Can Save Both Water and Money

Since 1970, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has advocated for “green” technology––including water-saving appliances. In addition to adapting some eco-friendly personal habits, the organization recommends investing in eco-friendly appliances and refraining from flushing certain things down the toilet.

It also recommends replacing old, poorly-functioning appliances with “WaterSense” products. These toilets, faucets, and other appliances function well above government standards, saving hundreds of gallons of water each year. Continue reading to learn more.

Get Water-Saving Appliances 

The EPA notes that the bathroom uses more water than any other part of the home––nearly 30 percent of a home’s water usage, but there are countless ways to conserve water. The best way is to install water-saving appliances.

Many states offer rebates, meaning that after one installs a low-flow toilet (or another appliance), they can get money back to help with installation costs. The EPA even has a search engine to see what rebates can be applied.

Some examples of water-saving appliances include:

  • Appliances with the WaterSense label
  • Tankless water heaters
  • High-efficiency faucets
  • EnergyStar appliances

While not an appliance, homeowners can also cut down on water consumption by insulating their pipes. This way, homeowners can reduce the likelihood of frozen pipes, which can burst and waste gallons of water.

Adapt Eco-Friendly Plumbing Habits 

save

Installing eco-friendly appliances isn’t the only thing a homeowner can do. To maximize water efficiency, one should combine these appliances with water-saving habits. Turning off the faucet when brushing one’s teeth can even add up over time.

The EPA lists some water-saving habits, such as:

  • Taking showers every other day: Unless one works a labor-intensive job, there is no reason to bathe every day.
  • Relying on the dishwasher: Washing dishes by hand isn’t just time-consuming; in the end, it uses more water than using a modern-day dishwasher. Homeowners can take their water-saving habits further by installing an EnergyStar dishwasher.
  • Only washing full loads of clothes: It’s just wasteful to run a load of laundry to get one shirt clean. Homeowners should fill up their washing machines to the maximum, rather than using them several times a week for a few articles of clothing.

Think Twice Before Flushing 

toiletToilets have one job: to eliminate human waste. If something isn’t human waste or toilet paper, it doesn’t belong in the toilet. Anyone who flushes menstruation products, paper towels, and Q-tips down the toilet risks clogging the system. This reduces a toilet’s efficiency, and over time, it can lead to clogs and burst pipes.

When using the toilet, one should avoid:

  • Using drain cleaner to eliminate clogs (this can wear away at the home’s pipes)
  • Using too much toilet paper
  • Avoid pouring grease or oil down the drain
  • Refraining from using the toilet as a garbage disposal

One should also close the lid prior to flushing. This prevents the spread of bacteria and water droplets from exiting the system.

About Platinum Plumbing 

The highly-rated Platinum Plumbing has experienced, fully licensed technicians and offers guaranteed upfront pricing. Call the professionals today for service in Bloomington and Normal, IL.

TAP LEAKAGE

Three Signs You May Have a Hidden Water Leak

What Homeowners Should Know About Hidden Leaks

Water leaks can be a huge problem in homes, causing water damage and expensive repairs. In many cases, homeowners won’t even know they have a water leak until it’s too late. Detecting a hidden water leak is essential to preventing any major problems down the road. Here’s a list of common signs that water leaks are present.

Running Water Soundsrunning water sounds

There are a few things homeowners can do to check for leaks. One of the easiest ways to check for leaks is to listen for running water sounds. If running water is heard even when all the taps are turned off, there’s likely a broken water line. A leaky water pipe often makes a hissing or dripping sound. If a homeowner hears these sounds coming from the walls, floors, or ceilings, it’s time to call a plumber.

Sometimes leaks may be slow enough that the sound is too quiet to hear. When that’s the case, mold and mildew can signify a hidden water leak in the home. If there are any signs of mold or mildew, it’s important to take action immediately. Mold can cause serious health problems, so don’t want to wait to address the issue.

swampy spots

Swampy Spots in the Yard

Another great way to find a hidden water leak is by looking in the yard. Underground leaks can cause a pooling of water in an area of the yard. The swampy spot should not be taken as a sign of a leak if it has just rained or the sprinklers were recently on. Otherwise, the spot could be due to a hidden leak.

Leaks can also be identified by examining growth patterns in an area of the yard. If there are noticeable differences in growth patterns, such as some areas growing quicker than others, it could mean there’s been saturation in those parts due to leaking underground pipes. The area will likely be lush and grow much faster than the rest of the lawn. However, if the leak is more serious and the soil is too saturated, it could also kill off the turfgrass.

Lower Water Pressure and Higher Water Bills

If a homeowner has noticed lower-than-usual pressure when flushing the toilet, washing hands, or taking a shower, then there might be at least one hidden water leak. When water leaks are present, the effect is similar to when more than one faucet or appliance in the home is using water; the pressure drops.

The water bill may also be noticeably higher due to the continuous flow of water from a water leak. The EPA estimates billions of gallons of water per year are wasted on small leaks that leak less than one gallon per minute. By getting small leaks repaired quickly, homeowners can lower their water bills and help the environment by saving water.

If a homeowner is experiencing any of these signs, the home likely has a water leak. If this is the case, it’s important to take action right away and repair the leak. Water leaks can cause serious damage to a home, so it’s important to get them repaired as soon as possible.

About Platinum Plumbing

The highly-rated Platinum Plumbing provides its neighbors in the Bloomington-Normal area with trusted service. They offer upfront, no-hassle pricing, easy financing options, and tailored solutions. Call them today for plumbing services by experienced, fully licensed plumbers in Normal, IL.