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Month: June 2016

How to Properly Care for Your Garbage Disposal

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Garbage disposals: can’t live with them, can’t live without them. They come in handy anytime little scraps of food end up in the sink, but can be a pain when they aren’t working properly. Did you know there are do’s and don’ts to caring for your garbage disposal? Following these rules will help to keep yours running strong.


First rule to keeping your garbage disposal running is to keep it clean. You should also be cleaning your disposal regularly. Cleaning can also be as simple as pouring a little soap in and running the disposal with some cold water. Another cleaning method is to fill your disposal with ice cubes and rock salt. If you would like a deeper clean, consider making vinegar ice cubes to use instead of regular ice cubes.

Believe it or not, running your garbage disposal regularly can help to elongate its life. Using it frequently helps to prevent rust and erosion while keeping drain obstructions from forming. Always remember to run cool water while using the disposal. The water’s flow will help to push items down the drain after being chopped up.

Why cool water, you may ask? Hot water causes any grease or fat to melt, increasing the likelihood of a clogged drain.


To keep your garbage disposal running at full speed, you need to remember to only wash food down the drain. Do we even need to tell you this? Avoid grinding glass, plastic, metal, cigarette butts or anything combustible.

In addition, avoid grinding the following foods as they have been known to cause clogs: grease, corn husks, celery stalks, onion skins, artichokes, potato peels, pasta, rice, coffee grounds and large animal bones. And remember, never try to wash a large amount of food down the drain, regardless of what kind of food it may be. Section the food off and send it down the drain in small amounts, waiting for the previous section to fully grind before adding the next.

Don’t turn off the garbage disposal until the grinding is complete. After the grinding stops, allow the water to run for about 15 more seconds, flushing out any remaining particles of food.

Finally, never try to retrieve anything from the disposal while it’s running. Even when it is stopped, don’t use your fingers, always use pliers or tongs.

Following these simple do’s and don’ts should keep your garbage disposal running at full speed. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment on this post and we’ll get back to you. As always, request an appointment with us if you think your garbage disposal isn’t running at its best.

Six Summer Plumbing Tips

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The summer months are finally here. Kids are out of school, days are longer and the fun is just beginning. Don’t let a plumbing issue wreak havoc on your summer plans. You can avoid most major plumbing issues by simply following these six tips.

Turn down your water heater while you’re away on vacation.

When you leave for vacation, you may think of turning the air conditioner to a higher temperature, but have you ever considered turning down your water heater? It not only helps you save on energy costs, but also it could help lengthen the life of your water heater. Remember, the average life of a water heater is about 10 years.

Avoid putting certain common foods down the garbage disposal.

Summer is a time for cookouts with friends and family. But, if you want to keep your kitchen drain running at full speed, don’t put any of the following foods down your drain: grease, celery, onion peels, lettuce, pasta, potatoes, rice, coffee and bones. In addition, avoid trying to force any large amount of food into the garbage disposal, regardless of what kind of food it is.

How prepare your washer for the increased laundry load.

Summer months mean dirty clothes. Between yard work and children who always seem to find mud in the back yard, your washer will have its work cut out for it. Be sure to inspect your machine at the beginning of the season. Check washing machine hoses for bulges, leaks or cracks, and remember to replace them about every three years. Moving your washer approximately four inches from the wall may help to prevent damage to the washing machine hoses.

Water your lawn at the most opportune time.

The best times to water your lawn are early morning and late evening. These times tend to be the most efficient because the sun is not out, meaning you won’t lose any precious water to evaporation. If you have a sprinkler system, program it to run at these times and you won’t have to worry about turning on the sprinklers at strange hours.

Use your dishwasher instead of hand washing dishes.

Yes, you read that correctly. Most dishwashers are energy-efficient, meaning they use less water than you would washing the dishes by hand. Recent studies have shown that running one load of dishes through the dishwasher saves about 37% of the water you would use to wash them by hand. So, make cleanup easy after your next cookout and throw those dishes in the dishwasher.

Have your sewer lines checked.

Spring and summer rains can cause cracked sewer lines. Make sure to have yours checked by a professional to avoid sewer backups this summer.

Hopefully these tips will help you avoid any major plumbing issues this summer. If not, give us a call and we’ll happily come fix it for you!