Choosing the Right Professional for Your Plumbing Maintenance Needs

Choosing the Right Professional for Your Plumbing Maintenance Needs

If you constantly find yourself having to fix the toilet or getting leaking taps on a daily basis, it may be time to consider professional help. An experienced plumber can make quite a difference when it comes to maintaining your property’s pipes efficiently. However, like all things, not all plumbers are made the same, and you need to do your due diligence before putting your trust in the hands of a random contractor.

In this blog, we will outline all the do’s and don’ts you may need to watch out for when it comes to choosing a plumbing contractor. So, let’s get started!

Plumbing Professional Guide To Choosing The Right Contractor

1.    Testimonials and Referrals

Don’t hesitate to ask for testimonials and referrals from trustworthy sources. Recommendations from friends, family, and neighbours can give you valuable insights into a plumber’s reliability, professionalism, and the quality of their work. Additionally, it’s a good idea to ask the plumber for references from previous clients and get feedback from them directly.

2.    Online Reviews and Ratings

Online reviews are a crucial resource. Platforms such as Google and Yelp aggregate customer feedback, providing insight into a plumber’s performance. Take your time to read through reviews, paying attention to both positive and negative feedback. Look for common themes, the number of reviews, and the overall rating.

3.    Insurance Coverage and License

Liability insurance protects homeowners in case of accidental property damage during plumbing work, while worker’s compensation insurance covers the plumber’s employees in case of on-the-job injuries. Additionally, you also need to ensure that your plumber is licensed and well-informed about local building codes.

4.    Evaluating Reputation

When selecting the right plumber, their reputation carries significant weight. It reflects their reliability, work quality, and client satisfaction. Assessing a plumber’s reputation can offer valuable insights into their professionalism and dedication to customer service.

5.    Upfront Quotes and Estimates

Before commencing any work, a trustworthy plumber will offer clear and upfront quotes and estimates for their services. They should conduct a thorough assessment of the project and then give you a comprehensive breakdown of all associated costs, encompassing both labour and any required materials or equipment.

6.    Breakdown of Costs

Along with giving you a total estimate, an honest plumber will also provide a detailed breakdown of the project’s costs. This helps you understand exactly how your money is being spent and the value you’re getting in return. Don’t hesitate to ask for clarification on any unfamiliar items. A plumber will gladly explain the reasons behind their pricing and address any questions you might have.

7.    Avoiding Hidden Fees

Be aware that hidden fees can significantly increase the cost of plumbing services if you’re not vigilant. When negotiating pricing with a plumber, ask if there are any potential extra charges that might be added to your project. This encompasses fees for emergency services, overtime labour, or unexpected complications that may occur during the work. This approach will help you steer clear of surprises and allow you to anticipate any additional costs that may crop up.

8.    Guarantees and Warranties

A good plumber provides guarantees and warranties for their work, ensuring peace of mind and demonstrating confidence in the quality of their services. Before hiring a plumber, ask about their service and product warranties. The presence of strong guarantees reflects a commitment to customer satisfaction and accountability.

9.    Attention to Detail

A proficient plumber carefully examines the project, identifies potential issues, and implements precise solutions. They ensure proper pipe alignment, seal connections correctly, and thoroughly test for leaks. It’s important to choose a plumber who pays close attention to detail.

10.   Clear Communication Channels

Effective communication with your plumber is key for a successful project. Regular updates and open channels build trust and confidence in your relationship. You can check the communication skills of your plumbers by asking them for plumbing maintenance tips. How forthcoming they are in their answer can easily tell if your plumber will be communicative in the future or not.

11.    Respectful and Courteous Staff

Superior customer service requires professionalism, courtesy, and respect from a plumber’s team. Look for plumbers who prioritize customer satisfaction and ensure a positive experience for every client.

12.    Response Time for Emergencies

In the event of a plumbing emergency, you may need to get immediate assistance. A competent plumber comprehends the urgency of such situations. When assessing plumbers, be proactive in inquiring about their emergency response time. A reputable plumber must provide swift and effective emergency services, guaranteeing the rapid resolution of critical issues like burst pipes or sewage backups.

13.    24/7 Availability

Choose a 24/7 plumber for peace of mind, whether it’s a late-night leak or a weekend emergency. Go for plumbers who prioritize customer convenience. If you are looking for the best 24/7 plumbing services in Sydney, Rapid Service Plumbing may be worth considering, as with us, you can have an experienced team of plumbers at your disposal any time, any day!

To Wrap Up

In conclusion, choosing the right professional for your plumbing maintenance needs is crucial for the well-being of your property. When you follow the outlines tips, you can make an informed decision and ensure that your plumbing work is carried out efficiently and effectively.

Your diligence will lead you to a reliable and trustworthy plumbing professional, or you can just take the easy route and book a consult with Rapid Service Plumbing to maintain your property’s plumbing in top condition. May you have a hassle-free experience with your chosen plumber!

How Often Should You Schedule Professional Plumbing Maintenance?

How Often Should You Schedule Professional Plumbing Maintenance?

When it comes to keeping your home or business running smoothly, regular plumbing maintenance is key. But how often should you schedule it? Let’s dive into the details and see why a good plumbing maintenance schedule is important and how often you should call the pros.

Why Regular Plumbing Maintenance Matters

 

Regular plumbing maintenance isn’t just about fixing leaks and clogs. It’s about ensuring the entire plumbing system is functioning properly, which can save you money in the long run and prevent major disasters.

  • Routine plumbing maintenance allows you to catch small issues before they become big problems.
  • Addressing minor issues can prevent expensive emergency repairs.
  • It will also improve the efficiency of your plumbing, potentially lowering your utility bills.
  • Leaks and standing water in faulty pipes can grow mould, while faulty pipes can contaminate water, so you need to keep the maintenance of your system up to date.

Determining Your Plumbing Maintenance Schedule

So, how often should you perform plumbing maintenance? The answer depends on various factors, including the age of your plumbing system, property type, and specific needs.

1.    Residential Properties

For most residential properties, an annual plumbing maintenance check is sufficient. This yearly inspection can identify any emerging issues and ensure everything functions as it should.

2.    Commercial and Industrial Buildings

Due to their complex and high-demand plumbing systems, commercial and industrial buildings often require more frequent maintenance. Semi-annual or even quarterly inspections might be necessary to maintain operational continuity and protect property.

3.    New Constructions and Renovations

Plumbing maintenance may not be as important if you have a new system or your existing system has been upgraded. However, it’s wise to establish a regular schedule to keep things running smoothly as the system ages.

Key Components of Routine Plumbing Maintenance

Routine plumbing maintenance involves several key checks and tasks to ensure your system is in top condition. Here are the main components of a thorough maintenance check.

1.    Inspection of Water Pressure

You will need to check the water pressure daily as you use the facilities. The reason for this is that a low or high water pressure can be the direct result of a leak or blockage.

2.    Integrity of Water Control Devices

Ensuring that water control devices like shut-off valves are working can prevent major water damage in case of an emergency.

3.    Calibration of Water Monitoring Devices

Devices that monitor water usage and pressure should be calibrated regularly by a professional to ensure accurate readings and effective performance.

4.    Testing of Water Drainage

Proper drainage is essential to avoid backups and clogs. Testing drains can reveal potential blockages or slow drains that need attention.

5.    Checking for Water Leaks

A thorough inspection for leaks can save you from water damage and high water bills. This includes checking visible pipes and fixtures, as well as using specialized equipment to detect hidden leaks.

6.    Inspection of Discharge or Wastewater Management Systems

Ensuring that wastewater is being managed properly is crucial for both health and environmental reasons. This includes checking for leaks, proper flow, and potential blockages.

7.    Plumbing Systems Connected to Mechanical Devices

Plumbing systems connected to appliances like water heaters, dishwashers, and washing machines need regular checks to ensure they are functioning properly and efficiently.

8.    High-Performance Equipment

Suppose your property has high-performance equipment or processes that depend heavily on the plumbing system. In that case, more frequent maintenance might be necessary to keep everything running smoothly.

9.    Complex Plumbing Systems

Buildings with complex plumbing systems, such as high-rises or multi-tenant spaces, benefit from annual maintenance to clear the drains and test the pipes for leaks. This proactive approach can prevent major, multi-floor damage.

10.  Seasonal Variations

Additional maintenance checks might be required in areas with extreme seasonal changes to ensure the plumbing system can handle the temperature fluctuations.

Signs That You Need Immediate Plumbing Maintenance

Sometimes, waiting for your next scheduled maintenance isn’t an option. Here are some signs that you need to call a plumber immediately.

1.    Slow Drains

If the water is draining slowly, it indicates that there is a blockage somewhere. You will need to address this before it becomes a bigger problem.

2.    Low Water Pressure

Sudden drops in water pressure can signal a serious issue, such as a leak or pipe damage.

3.    Noisy Pipes

If you hear banging or gurgling noises from your pipes, it may be time to check them out. These are abnormal and often indicate a problem requiring professional attention.

4.    Water Leaks

No matter how small, visible leaks should be fixed immediately to prevent water damage and higher utility bills.

5.    Unpleasant Odors

Foul smells from your drains or pipes can indicate a blockage or sewage problem that needs urgent attention.

DIY Maintenance Tips for Plumbing

While professional maintenance is crucial, there are some things you can do yourself to keep your plumbing in good shape between professional visits.

  • Prevent clogs by regularly cleaning your drains.
  • Periodically check for leaks under sinks and around fixtures.
  • Keep an eye on your water pressure, as sudden changes can indicate a problem that needs professional attention.
  • Call in a professional if anything gets out of hand.

Why You Should Call A Professional?

Despite your best efforts, some plumbing issues require professional expertise. Therefore, contacting Rapid Service Plumbing, a reliable 24/7 plumber in Sydney, may just be your best bet. Our team is equipped to handle even the messiest leaks and blockages at all hours, so don’t hesitate to give us a ring!

To Wrap Up

Regular plumbing maintenance allows you to keep everything running smoothly and prevent costly repairs. However, keep in mind that while some maintenance tasks can be handled on your own, don’t hesitate to call in the experts from Rapid Service Plumbing when needed. A well-maintained plumbing system is not only efficient but also crucial for the health and safety of everyone in the building.

Top 10 Common Issues with Rainwater Harvesting System Drains

Top 10 Common Issues with Rainwater Harvesting System Drains

Harvesting rainwater is a great way to conserve water and contribute to environmental sustainability. Rainwater harvesting systems provide a valuable resource for flushing toilets, washing cars, and irrigating gardens.

However, like any system, rainwater harvesting systems can encounter issues that require regular maintenance and troubleshooting. In this blog, we’ll explore the top 10 common issues with rainwater harvesting system drains and offer rainwater drainage tips to keep your system running smoothly.

Top 10 Tips for Rainwater System Troubleshooting

1.    Bad Smelling Water

The most common problem that occurs with these types of water harvesting systems is foul-smelling water. Such an occurrence can be caused by several factors, including:

●       Algal Growth

Algae, a freshwater organism, can fester in tanks that are exposed to sunlight and make the water smell. These micro-creatures tend to like the increased water temperature as it is a growth stimulus for their species. To make sure this does not occur, all you need to do is keep your tank sealed by using rain heads, tank screens, or even gutter mesh. If you already have algal growth, a few dashes of chlorinate should deal with this issue quite effectively.

●       Tank Base Sediment

Since tanks have water stored in standstill conditions and are not flowing, it also means that the tank may accumulate sediments at its base. This accumulation may result in water starting to smell bad. You can also protect your tank from sediments by filtering out the dust and organic matter using the same mesh and screens used to keep the algal spores out.

●       Animals in the Tank

When you use rainwater harvesting tanks, you are also always at risk of having to deal with decomposed small animals that may have found their way in. These animals can be anything from a mouse to birds or even frogs. If you do not wish to deal with all of this, install a rodent guard and remember to check for breeches regularly.

2.    Not Collecting Enough Water

Another common issue is that your tank may not be collecting enough water as you expected. This could be due to a blockage or leak caused by the accumulation of debris, leaves, or even a few rocks. You may need to regularly inspect the water collection area to make sure that the flow of water is not obstructed.

If the issue is persistent despite all your efforts, it may be time to call in a professional from Rapid Service Plumbing for the best drainage solutions in all of Australia.

3.    Unclear Water

You may also find that the rainwater in the tank is dirty or cloudy. This can be due to your filters not being cleaned properly or the build-up of debris in the tank. In case this issue is not resolved, you may need to consider installing a downpipe filter as it will clean the water as soon as it enters the tank.

4.    Frost Damage

These tanks are usually installed under the open air and above ground; therefore, they can easily freeze over during the winter. Repeated frost damage can significantly damage these tanks over time. The best solution for this is proper insulation or buying a pre-insulated rainwater harvesting tank.

5.    Water Overspill

When you experience heavy rains, your tank can fill up quite quickly and may even overflow. In such conditions, an overflow pipe is essential to drain all the extra water to the nearest drain. Check the overflow pipe regularly to make sure it is in proper working condition.

6.    Blocked Gutters and Downpipes

Another issue you may encounter is having to deal with blocked gutter or downpipes in your rainwater harvesting system. This blockage may prevent water from reaching your tank, so you may need to clean out your gutters and downpipes regularly. You can also install filters like gutter guards to stop the build-up of debris.

7.    Damaged or Leaking Tanks

As time passes, these tanks can wear out due to constant use, leading to leaked or damaged tanks. To remedy this before your tanks end up being damaged beyond repair, you may need to invest in some professional rainwater harvesting system maintenance from Rapid Service Plumbing on an annual basis.

8.    Pump Failures

A significantly essential part of any rainwater harvesting system is the pump. It is responsible for transporting the harvested water to where it can be used. When your pump stops working, the entire point of your harvesting system becomes moot. You may need to make sure your pump has ample power, is not worn out, or hasn’t any blockages. The pump may also need regular servicing or maintenance from an expert plumber for an extended lifespan.

9.    Clogged Filters

Filters are critical for keeping your harvested water clean, but they can become clogged with debris over time. Regularly clean or replace filters to maintain water quality and system efficiency. Establish a schedule for maintenance with your plumber to check and service filters as needed.

10.    Incorrect Installation

The last on this list and perhaps the most devastating issue that can fester into numerous problems is incorrect system installation. When your system is incorrectly installed, it leads to poor water collection, system failure, overflowing, and leaks. The most tried and tested way to prevent this from ever happening is to get the aid of an expert plumber who specialises in rainwater harvesting system maintenance, like our team at Rapid Service Plumbing.

To Wrap Up

While rainwater harvesting systems offer numerous benefits, they require regular maintenance and troubleshooting to address common issues. When you stay proactive and address these issues promptly, your rainwater harvesting system continues to provide an eco-friendly water source for your various needs.

Remember, if you encounter persistent problems with your rainwater harvesting system, seeking assistance from professional plumbers such as Rapid Service Plumbing can provide you with the expertise and solutions needed to keep your system running smoothly. Happy harvesting!

 

How to Improve the Efficiency of Your Dishwasher by Preventing Drain Blockages

How to Improve the Efficiency of Your Dishwasher by Preventing Drain Blockages

Are you looking to improve the efficiency of your dishwasher but don’t know where to start? No need to worry because we understand the importance of an efficient dishwasher. It not only saves you time but also ensures your cutlery and dishes come out sparkling clean every time. One of the best ways to maintain optimal dishwasher performance is by preventing drain blockages.

In this blog, we explore the best methods for blockage prevention and tips for improving dishwasher function so you can keep your dishwasher running smoothly and extend its lifespan. Let’s start!

How To Achieve Optimal Dishwasher Performance?

1.    Avoid Overloading

One of the most important blockage prevention methods is overloading the dishwasher. This can block the spray arms and consequently prevent the water from reaching all the dishes. It leads to inadequate cleaning and increases the need for re-washing, wasting water and energy. There should be enough space between each dish or cutlery so that the water and detergent can circulate freely.

2.    Placement of Large Items

The bigger items like the pots and pans need to be placed on either the sides or at the back of the bottom rack in the dishwasher. This way the smaller items can be cleaned thoroughly in the middle part. Additionally, you need to be careful of where you place the larger items, as they can end up blocking the detergent dispenser or even the spray arms.

3.    Positioning Dishes

The position of your dish, when you place it in the dishwasher determines how efficiently it will be washed. For the best results, make sure that you position dishes with the dirty side turned towards the spray arms. Another positioning technique to note is the angle at which you place the plates and bowls. They should be angled downward for proper drainage so the water can reach even the dirtiest parts.

4.    Avoid Nesting Utensils

When your utensils end up nesting together, they create a space between them where water and detergent cannot enter. This is not sanitary, so you need to avoid this by placing the utensils with their handles down in the utensil basket. This, of course, does not apply to knives for very obvious reasons, so place them with handles up for your and your family’s safety. Do not place spoons and forks together, as they can also end up sticking with each other.

5.    Use the Top Rack for Delicate Items

The top rack of the dishwasher is designated for smaller items like glasses and cups. To make sure these delicate items do not break, place them securely and in a way that they are not touching each other.

6.    Secure Lightweight Items

The water jets in the dishwasher can be quite forceful, so they can easily toss around any unsecured lightweight plastic items. You may need to secure these items in place using another heavier item or use a top rack designed to hold them.

7.    Check for Blockages

You may be able to employ a variety of blockage prevention methods, but your dishwasher may still become blocked. Therefore, you need to check for these regularly before starting the dishwasher. Just spin the spray arms by hand to ensure they can rotate freely and are not obstructed. Get a professional involved if there are any signs of the spray arms not working.

8.    Choosing the Right Detergent

Here are some detailed tips on detergent use:

  • Only use the detergents which are specifically formulated for dishwashers.
  • Do not use excessive detergent as it will leave residue buildup on dishes and inside the dishwasher.
  • Make sure to follow the dishwasher manufacturer’s guide on how much detergent you need to use.

9.    Routine Checks and Maintenance

Your dishwasher needs regular maintenance to keep running smoothly. Book professional plumbing services in Sydney, like Rapid Service Plumbing, to come and inspect your dishwasher every once in a while to ensure it is working as it should. Without routine checks, your dishwasher is at high risk of sudden breakdowns.

10.    Use the Right Cycle

The right cycle makes all the difference when it comes to dishwashing. A dirtier dish requires a hot cycle, while a lightly dirty dish can be cleaned efficiently by a short cycle. Identify the type of cycle your dishes may need.

11.    Run Full Loads

Only running full loads in the dishwasher is not only an eco-conscious habit, but it also maximises water and energy efficiency.

 

 

The 8 Steps Of Stormwater Pit Installation

The 8 Steps Of Stormwater Pit Installation

Did you know it rains about 150 times per year in Sydney? That’s almost every other day dumping water on our properties – which means installing a stormwater pit is something every residence might need to consider sooner or later. That’s especially the case if natural drainage is an issue at your place, so are you wondering about residential stormwater pit installation? It will be perfect as a collection point for all that excess water, so that it can be safely diverted away from your precious property. Care about your home’s landscape and foundation? It’s time to learn how a stormwater pit works and the ins and outs of stormwater pit installation. Let’s dive in:

Stormwater pit in backyard: What you need to know

In many, many cases, drainage pit installation is absolutely essential to serve as a holding tank for all of that excess rainwater. But what is a stormwater pit, exactly? Basically, it’s just a big container, typically made of plastic, concrete, or fibreglass, that is buried underground at a low point in your yard.

As for how it works, it’s quite simple but it’s also quite ingenious: when it rains, the water flows into the pit through grates at the top, which filter out the debris. The collected water is then directed away from your property through connected drainage pipes, which should ideally lead to a stormwater drain system or safe discharge area. Think of it like this: the pit ensures that excess water is stored for a while so it can be gradually released, eliminating the risk of flooding and water damage to your landscaping and foundation making it an effective Sydney drainage solution. The only question that remains now is: how to install stormwater pit components at your place? Let’s take another dive:

Tip: The flooding in your yard might not actually require a stormwater pit. It’s possible water isn’t flowing due to partially blocked stormwater drains, so a professional drain inspection is advised before proceeding.

How stormwater pits are installed

Ok, installing a stormwater pit may be very tricky, but we’re going to educate you, recognising that it requires a good understanding of drainage systems and some heavy manual work:

1. Site selection & planning

Choose the lowest point in your yard where water tends to accumulate when it’s really been raining. You’ll need to consider the pit’s size and the direction of the drainage pipes.

2. Excavation

Dig a hole larger than the size of your stormwater pit. This requires precise measurements and you’ll also need to factor in the stability of your pit.

3. Preparing the base

Next, lay a bed of compacted sand or gravel at the bottom of the hole – that will give it stability. Then level the pit.

4. Installing the pit

How to install plastic stormwater pit? Recognise that concrete, plastic, PVC and fibreglass are all viable options, but they all have their pros and cons. Plonk it into the hole, ensuring it sits exactly level.

5. Connecting drainage pipes

Attach PVC pipes to the pit’s outlets, ensuring they all lead towards the most appropriate discharge point. Beware: This step will require a good understanding of gradient and flow direction.

6. Backfilling & compaction

Fill around the pit with gravel and compact it to ensure stability and prevent shifting.

7. Installing the grate

Finish up by fitting the grate to the top of the pit. It should be precisely flush with ground level for safety and effectiveness.

8. Final landscaping

And now, really restore your home to its existing (or extra!) beauty by restoring the area around the pit. This may include paving, planting or turf laying.

The importance of correct drainage pit installation

Don’t forget, DIY stormwater pit installation requires intricate planning, heavy lifting and precise execution, highlighting the importance of getting it right the first time to ensure the effective drainage you’re looking for. And given all that complexity, it’s usually advisable for homeowners to consider hiring a professional plumber or drainage expert who can guarantee a safe and effective installation.

Are you starting to get your head around the complexities of installing a stormwater pit? It requires understanding its function and all of the detailed steps that are involved – so why not get professional installation and expert advice done at a brilliant price? Here at Rapid Service Plumbing in Sydney, we’re your local go-to that Sydney residents really trust for a hassle-free and efficient installation, keeping your property safe and dry with a workmanship guarantee – for life! We are always ready to serve you whether you’re in Kingsgrove, Rosebery, Darling Point, Box Hill, Rozelle, Alfords Point, Beecroft, or beyond. Not only that, but we also now have a top rated Meblourne plumbing team available. So get in touch with Rapid Service Plumbing today for true peace of mind.

8 Questions, 8 Answers For A Toilet Not Completely Flushing

8 Questions, 8 Answers For A Toilet Not Completely Flushing

Ah, that dreaded moment when you hit the flush button, expecting everything to vanish in a whirlpool of triumph and science – and it simply doesn’t work out that way. Instead, you’re met with the stubborn refusal of that toilet paper (and its less mentionable companions) to bid a final farewell, leaving you in a flush of frustration and embarrassment. Toilet not flushing properly? Don’t fret, because you’ve stumbled upon the right spot – our ultimate troubleshooting guide is here.

Why is my toilet not flushing? First, don’t panic!

So how are we going to handle this? Well, as you can imagine, our Sydney toilet plumbers stare into a lot of misbehaving toilets and cisterns, so we can swiftly navigate you through the murky waters of a toilet not fully flushing. But before we get out our tools, the owners of these porcelain thrones ask us the questions. And right here and right now, we provide all of the answers for every flush faux pas!:

1. Why is the toilet paper not flushing?

Everything seems fine, but nothing really goes down, right? Often, if the toilet paper won’t flush (not to mention everything else!), it’s because you have a habit of using too much paper per flush, and it’s caused a blockage. You may even have been trying to flush non-flushables like feminine hygiene products, but the plunger could do the trick to fix it.

2. How come my toilet’s flush seems weaker than usual?

A weak flush can be due to low water levels in the tank. Open the cistern up – it’s not hard – and ensure the water level is about 2-3cm below the overflow tube. Check around the base and look for and water running into the bowl to ensure your cistern leaking is not the issue.

3. Why does my toilet not flush fully or empty the bowl completely?

Ah, that could be a problem with the flapper. It’s that rubber valve at the bottom of the tank, which lifts to release water into the bowl during a flush and then seals back up to refill it. If it can’t release enough water for a powerful flush, give it a once-over and check for wear or damage.

4. My toilet is flushing so slowly. What’s up?

Toilet not flushing fully – or just really, really slowly? Mineral build-up in the holes under the rim or in the siphon jet can be a reasonably simple explanation for a slowed-down flush. Get out an old toothbrush and some white vinegar and see what you can do.

5. My toilet keeps flush all by itself!?

In the plumbing business, we often call this ‘ghost flushing’ and the culprit can be the flapper once again, allowing water to seep into the bowl and trigger a full flush. You’ll need to check for leaks but that flapper probably needs replacing.

6. Why isn’t anything happening when I press for a flush?

Nothing happening at all when you press that button – literally nothing? It can seem like a catastrophic problem, but it could just be a loose or broken handle, and that’s always fixable by your local plumber in Sydney. Also, just check that handle is securely connected to the flush mechanism, as that can be a super-quick fix.

7. Why does my toilet gurgle when I flush it?

Oh, that could be a blocked vent pipe. You’ll need to call your plumber!

8. My toilet is brand new! Why isn’t it flushing properly?

Do you have one of those modern, low-flow toilets? Perhaps you’re simply not holding the handle down long enough to release enough water for a full, complete flush. You’re welcome! If only every problem was that easy to fix!

Toilet not flushing completely still? Call a Pro!

Have you scanned down the list of questions and your problem isn’t there? Or if you found your problem and the problem persists, what’s next? Look, it could be something quite a bit more serious like a total sewer line blockage or a toilet that needs hauling into the local tip – but don’t worry, because the guys at Rapid Service Plumbing are always just around the corner. No matter your toilet flush issue, we do it all – bundled with no-obligation quotes, upfront pricing, and 100% guaranteed workmanship for life. Give the friendliest team of local plumbers at Rapid Service Plumbing a call today.

How Long Do Hot Water Systems Last? 5 Essential Tips

How Long Do Hot Water Systems Last? 5 Essential Tips

We’re all Aussie homeowners. And one of our constant worries is about how long do hot water systems last. After all, a hot shower or bath or a steaming pile of dishes is a crucial part of our happy daily life, but we only ever take it for granted once something goes BANG! Cold showers as the cold season approaches? No thanks! Massive unexpected bills amid a cost of living crisis! No way!

How long does a hot water system last, really?

How long do solar hot water systems last? No, take a deep breath because it doesn’t matter what type of hot water system you have. How often do you wonder how long do electric hot water systems last? Or gas. Or solar. Or heat pump? No matter the technology, age or type, there are plenty of factors that are relevant here. Usage. Maintenance. Environmental conditions in Sydney and beyond. Because no, it’s not just a simple question of time. That’s why we’ve diving deeper into understanding how long do gas hot water systems last – and the rest of them! We use all sorts of hot water systems in Sydney and beyond, so let’s seek both peace of mind and a plan for the future:

1. What type of system do you have?

This factor can be a big deal, because while electric and gas systems typically last 10-15 years, solar and heat pump models can last a little longer. So make yours long as long as it can, regularly check and clean the components specific to your system type – and by that, we mean clearing those solar panels or checking the anode in electric models. Need help? Jump to the bottom of this blog!

2. What’s your water quality?

You should also know about the quality of your tap water. If you live in a region with particularly hard water, that can really start to build up scale in your system. What does that mean? We’re talking about reduced efficiency and lifespan. To help things, install a water softener or get your system regularly descaled to mitigate the effects.

3. How often is that system used?

If you’re really stressing your hot water system, be aware that wear and tear is only being accelerated. So watch that hot water usage, and before you do that make sure that the size of your hot water system is enough to accommodate your household’s needs.

4. What’s your maintenance routine?

A bit lazy with maintenance? We all are, but if you keep up with that upkeep, you keep total system failure at bay. Schedule an annual inspection, get that maintenance done, and flush the tank. And check the pressure relief valves!

5. Are there environmental factors?

Yes, there are definitely environmental factors! It could be harsh weather or heavy hail, but no matter how cold or hot it gets, it matters when it comes to the system’s durability. Are your external components protected by insulation or weatherproof covers? Have you asked a local Sydney plumber about adequate ventilation for the indoor and outdoor units?

DIY VS professional hot water system maintenance

Understand these factors deeply, and homeowners are on the way to extending the life of their hot water systems. From a complex issue to regular maintenance, seeking affordable and professional help is the most obvious answer here. Rapid Service Plumbing offers comprehensive plumbing services in Sydney, including emergency plumbing, blocked drain solutions, gas fitting, hot water systems and more. Give us a call today.

How Long Does A Hot Water System Take To Heat Up?

How Long Does A Hot Water System Take To Heat Up?

So, how long does a hot water system take to heat up? We know it’s frustrating to wait – especially if you think something might have gone wrong with your expensive unit that you rely on each day for showers and baths. But perhaps you’re browsing for a new system and want to know what to expect – like if you’re tossing up between a tankless vs a traditional tank system or perhaps even a state-of-the-art heat pump. Or maybe you’re just curious.

How long does it take for a hot water tank to heat up?

First, let’s do some troubleshooting! We know you’re shivering in the bathroom waiting for that freezing cold water to heat up, so let’s see what’s going on whilst pondering the question: How long does it take for hot water to heat up?:

Troubleshooting hot water system heat-up delays

1. Check power sources

Is your system even connected to its power source? If it’s electric, that means checking the circuit breakers. And for gas systems? How long does a gas water heater take to heat up? A bit faster than electric, but let’s start with peering into the system to look for the presence of that pilot light.

2. Inspect thermostat settings

Next, let’s verify that the thermostat is set to an appropriate temperature – because if it’s set too low, it’s not going to be hot enough! However, your system should be set to a standard, regulatory-compliant temperature.

3. Evaluate tank capacity vs. usage

Do you have a tank-based system? If you do, perhaps you’ve just run out of water! If the stored water is all gone, your system won’t be able to catch up as you stand there waiting for it. This leads to the question, “How long does it take for a hot water tank to heat up?” Understanding this can help you manage your expectations and plan accordingly for your hot water needs.

4. Look for leaks

Put your clothes back on and head outside to your system. Do you see your hot water system badly leaking? A few drops here and there are fine, but something very soggy could be a major problem.

5. Could it be sediment build-up?

In storage systems, sediment accumulation at the bottom of that tank is something that can act as a barrier to heat transfer. It could be time for a flush.

6. Check for faulty heating elements

You might also need to look into whether your hot water system has a faulty heat element, especially if you’re asking, ‘How long does an electric hot water system take to heat up?’ This could be a key factor affecting the heating time of your system.

7. How old is your system?

If your system is past its prime, it may be struggling for heating efficiency. Maybe that means waiting a little longer for water – or maybe it’s time to call the plumber!

Quick or slow?: Unpacking the factors behind water heat-up

So, you’ve run through 1 to 7 and there’s nothing obviously wrong? Maybe you’ve just run into a few of the major factors that impact how quickly your hot water system can heat up. Remember, it’s not always just about patience, but a complex mix of science and system specifics.

  • System type: If it’s a fully-functioning tankless (or instantaneous) hot water system, that should give you hot water very quickly – we’re talking within a few seconds. A tank system, though, can take a while for the hot water to reach your tap.
  • Tank capacity: What is the size of your hot water system? Is it a particularly big one? It should be chock-full of hot water, but if you’re waiting for it to heat up, that’s going to take quite a bit longer.
  • Energy type: Gas or electric? If electric, it can take longer to heat up than gas. But it’s not going to make a huge difference, to be honest.
  • Initial water temperature: How cold is the weather out there? If it’s the dead of winter, it’s time to be patient because you’re asking your system to work a lot harder to reach the desired temperature.
  • Thermostat setting: Your thermostat should be at a fixed temperature, but if you’ve cranked it all up to something particularly hot, that will take longer once you turn that hot tap.
  • System efficiency: Is your system brand new or quite old? If the latter, expect a longer wait time – or start looking into a repair, some maintenance, or something brand new.
  • Maintenance history: When was the last time you had a professional out to service your hot water system?
  • Usage patterns: Do you have two or even three showers or baths? If so, if you’re trying to churn out hot water at the same time, that could mean seriously extended heating times.

Rapid Service Plumbing: Tailored solutions for your hot water needs

Think of your hot water system like a living, breathing piece of technology. Does it need a little TLC? From installation to repairs, maintenance, regular servicing and beyond, the friendly team at Rapid Service Plumbing offers expert guidance and a range of services tailored to your needs around the clock. Why not give the team a shout today for an obligation-free quote? We can’t wait to hear from you!

Electric Hot Water System Not Working? Here’s 9 Simple Fixes

Electric Hot Water System Not Working? Here’s 9 Simple Fixes

Electric hot water system not working like it used to – or at all? It’s a tale as old as hot water systems themselves: you’re ready for a relaxing shower, only to be greeted by an icy torrent that sends shivers down your spine. Yes, hot water system issues are not just annoying – they can seriously disrupt the daily routine and trigger temper-tantrums all across the household. But here’s a little-known fact: when it comes to hot water system woes, electric models take the cake for causing more headaches than their counterparts. Why, you ask? Well, it’s a combination of their widespread use, intricate electrical components, and the need for regular maintenance that often goes unnoticed.

But let’s stop fretting, because we’re about to dive into the ultimate troubleshooting guide for those pesky electric hot water system problems. So, grab your notepad and keep that dry towel and body wash handy – because help is on the way!

Why is my electric hot water system not working? A progressive troubleshooting guide

Let’s take a progressive approach to resolving your electric hot water issue. Though it might seem daunting, especially when you’re faced with something like your hot water system not heating, there’s a chance it could be a simpler fix than you think, one you might be able to handle yourself. Of course, it could also indicate a need for a plumber or a new system, but let’s not jump to conclusions just yet.

1. Have you run out of water?

If you’ve got a storage-based system, the problem could be as simple as an empty tank! You might have a ‘boost’ button that can start to heat a new batch immediately, but you might also need to wait until the morning.

2. Check the power source

Your electric system isn’t going to do much without electricity! It’s frustrating when you encounter something like your electric hot water not working, but with a bit of luck, it’s not a serious power issue or a deeper wiring problem. Rather, it could be something as simple as a tripped breaker or a blown fuse that needs dealing with.

3. Can you adjust the thermostat?

Across the country, hot water systems are basically set at a pre-determined level in compliance with regulations. However, if you’re facing an issue with an electric hot water system not heating up, it could be as simple as the thermostat settings being set too low for a satisfying shower.

4. Is it a high-temperature cut-off?

Similarly, if you’re dealing with your electric hot water system not heating, it could be that the upper thermostat on your unit has a cut-off switch that has tripped due to excessive heat. Simply hitting the reset button might be the quick solution you need. After resetting, give the system some time to get going again.

5. Is your hot water system leaking?

When you notice moisture or water pooling around your hot water system, it’s a clear sign of a leak – and potentially a big problem waiting to unfold. Leaking hot water systems can range from simple issues like loose connections to more serious problems such as a cracked tank.

6. Low hot water pressure

Experiencing a disappointing trickle when you were hoping for a powerful, hot shower is not only frustrating but could indicate a problem with your hot water system or the plumbing. Here are steps to diagnose and potentially fix low hot water pressure

7. Check the heating elements

It’s very common for the heating elements to become coated with mineral deposits – or simply burn out. It’s possible to test them with a multimeter, but you may need help with that – especially if you find you need a replacement.

8. Is it time for a flush?

Part of your system’s normal maintenance regimen is a simple tank flush – which basically involves emptying the tank completely so that it can re-fill with fresh water.

9. The thermostat could need replacing

If you’re sure all the settings are right and your unit has power, it might be the thermostat that has seen better days. Replacing it will require a call to a licenced plumber near you.

10. Corrosion or tank damage

Perhaps you haven’t kept up to date with checking (and replacing) and sacrificial anode rod – the component that sits inside your tank with the express task of attracting corrosion away from your precious tank. Unfortunately, if the tank is badly corroded or otherwise damaged, the entire system will probably need to be replaced.

11. Which brand is your system?

We have some detailed guides for different hot water brands. So if you’re troubleshooting a Rinnai hot water system or trying to fix a Rheem hot water system dive deeper there.

12. Call a hot water plumber

Have you run through the steps? No success? Don’t panic: because Sydney’s favourite 24-hour hot water plumbing service is always just around the corner. Perhaps it’s an internal blockage, maybe it’s a complex mechanical failure, or perhaps it’s a super-easy fix – or maybe it’s simply time to explore your options for a shiny, brand-new hot water system.

Expert advice for an electric hot water system not working

Remember, while some hot water fixes are straightforward, electrical systems can be dangerous – and there are plenty of regulations restricting what you’re allowed to do with your hot water system. If in doubt, give the friendly team at Rapid Service Plumbing a call – we’ll be right there! Inner West hot water, Sutherland Shire hot water, North Shore hot water and Sydney wide.

 

You’re 6 Steps Away From Fixing A Leaking Toilet Cistern

You’re 6 Steps Away From Fixing A Leaking Toilet Cistern

Is that the dreaded sound of a leaking toilet cistern – that ‘trickle, trickle, trickle’ is a never-ending, irritating symphony in your home’s smallest and most hard-working room. But even if you can cope with the annoying dribble, it can quickly escalate into a seriously watery nightmare, hiking up your water bills and threatening water, plumbing and other damage.

Mastering the art of fixing a leaking toilet cistern

But don’t worry, because you don’t need to be a toilet plumbing specialist to start to get your head around this. Our easy, step-by-step diagnostic guide is here to help you pinpoint the problem with a toilet cistern leaking and guide you towards the next steps to fix it. So, together, let’s dive into the porcelain throne and fix that drip!:

Step 1: Confirm the leak

You’ve already heard that trickle, trickle, trickle, but let’s also give that entire toilet a decent visual inspection too to check for any obvious cistern leaking in and around the tank but also the base and the supply lines too. And is the whole toilet loose? Simply tightening the base bolts could fix that.

Step 2: Check the cistern water level

If you have a dripping toilet cistern, let’s see what’s going on inside. Remember, the cistern is the tank that holds the water ready for the next flush. The lid of the cistern should be easy enough to remove, but be careful not to break it as they can be difficult to replace.

Look at the water level – is the top of the water a few centimetres or so below the overflow tube? If it’s too high, make an adjustment to the float mechanism to lower it a little. With a bit of luck, that will stop the system from its constantly toilet cistern dripping state.

Step 3: Test the flapper valve

The flapper valve is a fairly basic rubber seal that controls the release of water from the tank into the bowl when you hit the flush button – and it’s critical for maintaining the proper water level, especially when dealing with a leaking cistern.

  • Inspect it: Check the flapper for signs of wear, warping or damage, especially if you suspect toilet cistern leaking into the bowl. If you think that could be the culprit, you can try to replace it yourself – as long as you’re confident you’re not going to make your misbehaving toilet problem even worse!
  • The food colour test: By adding a few drops of food colouring to the cistern water, you can test the performance of your old (or new!) flapper valve when dealing with toilet flush leaking. Simply wait 30 minutes after adding the colour – and if the water in the bowl starts to become colourful, the flapper valve may well be leaking.

Step 4: Inspect the fill valve

Toilet system leaking? Look for a metal or plastic cylindrical body called the fill valve – a crucial component for regulating the way water is supplied to the cistern.

  • Listen for hissing: Is it hissing? That’s the classic sign of a fill valve on the way out.
  • Adjust or replace: Look for an adjustment screw or knob, and turn it clockwise to increase the water level or anti-clockwise to decrease it until you find the sweet spot. If the valve is damaged, though, it will need replacing.

Step 5: Check the flush valve and flush mechanism

Next up, let’s zoom into the flush valve seal and the flush mechanism. The seal is just a rubber/silicone ring to create a watertight seal during the flush, while the mechanism itself is what you press in order to flush the toilet.

  • Seal: Give it a good once-over for signs of wear or damage.
  • Mechanism: Is the button or handle sticking or loose?

Step 6: Can you DIY or do you need a plumber?

Sometimes, you can get away with a quick DIY fix, with minor toilet issues among the few plumbing tasks you are allowed to try for yourself without a plumbing license. But for major water leaks, cracks or more complex problems, it may be best to get professional help right from the start:

  • Simple fix: If you’ve traced your toilet problem to the flapper, fill valve or the need for a minor adjustment, go for it if you’ve got the basic skills, knowledge, tools and confidence.
  • Call a plumber: For everything else, or if you’re just not sure, don’t worry – because a top plumber in Sydney is only ever just around the corner.

Decision time: DIY or professional help?

A misbehaving toilet can sometimes feel like a big problem, but thankfully it’s one of those household problems that can be resolved with a bit of DIY grit and know-how. But even when that leaky throne overwhelms you, Rapid Service Plumbing will be there for you. Across Sydney and beyond including Canterbury-Bankstown, City of Sydney, Eastern Suburbs, Hills District, Inner West, Sutherland Shire, North Shore and Northern Beaches, we offer 24/7 service, obligation-free quotes, guaranteed workmanship and no call-out fees. Flush all of your worries away by giving the friendly team at Rapid Service Plumbing a shout today.

Mastering DIY Plumbing: 7 Easy Steps To Replace Your Toilet Cistern

Mastering DIY Plumbing: 7 Easy Steps To Replace Your Toilet Cistern

You may sit on the bowl itself, but without the cistern – the tank that holds the water ready to flush – it’s not going to be a very satisfying experience! If it’s time to replace toilet cistern due to it being cracked, otherwise significantly damaged or it’s just time for a modern upgrade, a full replacement is something that isn’t too tricky to do.

Is replacing toilet cistern even legal?

First, a warning: In NSW, like most other jurisdictions across Australia, plumbing codes will require you to hold a valid plumber’s license for any significant plumbing work other than changing a washer, swapping out a showerhead or fitting a comfy new toilet seat. This includes the replacement of a toilet cistern only. So check with your local authorities before you repair or replace a toilet.

What may surprise you, however, is that while it’s the critical component of the hardest-working seat in your home, replacing the cistern actually isn’t too hard if you have the confidence and basic skills. How to change a cistern?

First, you’ll need:

  • New cistern (including bolts)
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Screwdrivers
  • Sponge, towels & bucket
  • Plumber’s tape
  • Rubber gaskets & sealant.

How to replace a toilet cistern in 7 simple steps

Step 1: Prepare

Turn off the water supply both at the mains and at the valve located behind or next to the toilet itself. Now flush the toilet to get rid of the stored water in the cistern, and use the sponge and bucket to get the last races out too before you replace cistern.

Step 2: Disconnect the water supply

At the bottom of the cistern, you’ll find the water supply line. Remove it with the wrench and be ready for the release of a little more water with the bucket and towels.

Step 3: Remove the old cistern

It’s done by unscrewing the nuts that attach the cistern to the bowl – find them at the bottom of the tank. If they’re corroded or stuck, try using some penetrating lubricant before trying again. Once they’re off, just lift the cistern off the bowl.

Step 4: Prepare the new cistern

Hopefully you’ve already ensured the replacement toilet cistern is compatible with your existing bowl and toilet configuration, so unpack it and follow the instructions to see if any mechanisms need to be assembled before you try to install it. Place new rubber gaskets on the new cistern bolts so you’ll have a nice, watertight seal.

Step 5: Position the new cistern

The new cistern and the top of the toilet bowl should perfectly align with the mounting holes so that you can easily secure the installation with the nuts. When replacing a cistern, be careful not to over-tighten as it can not only damage the cistern but even crack the porcelain.

Step 6: Re-connect the water supply

Wrap the threads of the inlet valve with Teflon plumber’s tape, which is critical for a tight and permanent seal when replacing the cistern. Now it’s just a matter of re-connecting the water supply line to the bottom of the cistern with the wrench – and remember, don’t over-tighten!

Step 7: Test, seal & you’re done!

Fully restore the water supply, and you’ll know you’ve done it correctly because you’ll hear the cistern start to fill up. Carefully check if the cistern is leaking while this happens, and once you’re sure and the tank is completely full, do a test flush. If everything’s working perfectly, add a bead of sealant around the base of the cistern to ensure it’s all watertight for good. And now pat yourself on the shoulder for a job well done. You’ve learned how to change toilet cistern parts and it all works perfectly!

Toilet cistern replacement – The easy way!

But don’t forget, fiddly DIY jobs – especially on your home’s critical plumbing functions – aren’t for everyone, because they can turn a minor issue into a big, watery, expensive disaster! And in NSW as well as most other Aussie jurisdictions, work like this can only be carried out by a licensed local plumber in Sydney – like Rapid Service Plumbing right here in Sydney and beyond.

Our expert services are tailored to meet the unique needs of each client Sydney wide, including Chullora, Darlington, Coogee, North Rocks and Beecroft. No matter what TLC your home’s hard-working throne needs or where you are, we do it all with obligation-free quotes, $0 call-out, a price match guarantee and fully guaranteed workmanship for life. Give Rapid Service Plumbing a call today – 24/7.

Rinnai Hot Water Troubleshooting: 9 Problems & Solutions

Rinnai Hot Water Troubleshooting: 9 Problems & Solutions

Rinnai is a household name for hot water in Australia, for a very good reason – a trusted brand for keeping that hot water absolutely steaming hot! But that doesn’t mean your Rinnai won’t break down, or at least run into the odd problem – because in the typical life of a Rinnai, it will keep literally tens of thousands of showers and baths hot per household. And while there are numerous Rinnai hot water system troubleshooting guides out there, many are just for marketing, or the information is too generic. Put simply, they’re guides that are mainly compiled by flicking through a Rinnai manual rather than the actual, real-life queries plumbers like us receive just about every day about their real-life, hard-working Rinnai hot water systems.

The real-world guide to Rinnai hot water problems

Rinnai hot water not working? This Rinnai troubleshooting guide is different. It’s perhaps the only faithful compilation of real-world questions and problems specific to Rinnai systems, put together and answered by real-world plumbers who get their hands dirty with Rinnai systems of every age and type every day.

Together, we’ll help end your Rinnai problems:

1. No water at all from my Rinnai system

If your Rinnai is churning out cold rather than hot water, the most common reason is that it’s a gas system that isn’t getting gas! Error code 11 is super-common, indicating a problem with the igniter – although the gas could simply be turned off as well. In the absence of an error code, look into whether the system’s temperature settings have been accidentally changed.

2. How do you reset a Rinnai water heater?

Perhaps there’s been a power outage, you want to clear an error code, or things just aren’t running right. To reset your Rinnai, find the control panel, and restart it – by turning off the power supply, waiting a minute or two, and restoring the power. If your particular Rinnai model has an actual reset button though, that’s even better.

3. Why is my Rinnai hot water heater not working and showing Error Code 11?

As we implied in Q1, it’s a very common one! But it doesn’t necessarily result in you having no hot water at all. However, something has gone wrong with the ignition. It could be no gas, it could be a faulty, dirty or misaligned igniter, or it could be a flame rod issue.

4. Why is my Rinnai water system not working while it’s leaking?

While the odd release of a small amount of water indicates normal valve function, a steady or excessive release of water could mean those valves have actually gone wrong. Then again, the tank could be corroded – which is very bad news. But perhaps it’s just a loose fitting or connection rather than a clear sign that your Rinnai’s useful days are over.

5. What does error code 12 mean on a Rinnai?

Error Code 11 is common, and so is Error Code 12! Basically, it’s just telling you about a flame failure, although the actual reason for that can vary. The gas supply could be low, venting may not be happening properly, or the flame rod might be faling. So check that gas, check the vent system – or call a plumber.

6. How do I re-light a Rinnai pilot light?

If your Rinnai is fairly new, it perhaps doesn’t have a traditional pilot light at all but electronic ignition instead – which would definitely explain why it’s proving hard to re-light! If your older Rinnai definitely has a normal pilot light, you’ll need to pull out that manual and follow the specific steps, but it’s usually just turning the gas control knob to ‘pilot’ and igniting the pilot whilst holding down the reset button.

7. Why is my Rinnai producing lukewarm water?

You want a satisfying steamer, but instead you’re getting a lukewarm fizzer. It could be the thermostat that’s on the way out, but then again it might be something as simple as a half-closed gas valve. Then again, the heat exchanger might be clogged or hard water might have caused scaling, in which case you’ll need a good hot water repair plumber.

8. How do I increase the temperature on a Rinnai electric hot water system?

It seems like a similar question to #7, but the solution is probably simpler – find that control panel and send the temperature in the upward direction. You might even have a new electric hot water system model with a remote, which can be used – but bear in mind that most hot water temperature in Australia is restricted due to the scalding risk.

9. Why did my Rinnai gas hot water system just suddenly turn off?

The main cause of a sudden but apparently-routine shutdown of your Rinnai gas hot water system is overheating – so you might be seeing Error Code 16. Then again, it could be a ventilation issue (Error 10) or an unspecified system fault (Errors 70, 71 & 72) – and for these you’ll need a plumber or technician.

Your Rinnai rescue team at Rapid Service Plumbing

Rinnai hot water system not working? The solutions and insights you see above are all courtesy of the real-world customers and plumbers of Rapid Service Plumbing. Our friendly plumbers Sydney wide are serious experts in dealing with Rinnai hot water systems of every kind, age and condition, offering expert guidance and fast, affordable solutions. Rapid Service Plumbing stand out from the crowd with our lifetime workmanship guarantee and a range of other service goodies, so for fast help 24/7, don’t hesitate to give us a shout day or night.