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Common Plumbing, Heating & AC Questions

Have questions? Here are  answers. We’ve put together some of the most common questions our technicians are asked when they’re on the job.

“8 years ago your team installed a RUUD hot water heater in my home. When should I consider replacing the pressure relief valve?”

For replacing the relief valve, it should not be necessary unless it is dripping or tripping. We generally find that relief valves will last the life of the water heater and other than testing it periodically, it should be just fine. If after you test the valve, it should leak or drip, then you would look to replace it.

A couple of other maintenance items that will help extend the life of your water heater include:

  • If there is a screen at the bottom of your water heater, be sure it is clean and clear or dirt and lint (a shop-vac works great)
  • There is a drain valve located toward the bottom of your tank. Place a bucket underneath the valve and release a couple of gallons of water. This will help clean out the sediment that collects in the bottom of the tank and help extend the life of the heater.

“I’m leaving to go on vacation and will be gone for about a week. How can I prepare my home?”

If you’re heading off on vacation for more than just a few days, it’s a good idea to make a few preparations to make sure you don’t walk into a plumbing disaster zone when you return. Here are three simple tips:

Turn off the main water feed to your house. During the winter season, you should also drain your pipes to prevent them from freezing. If your pipes freeze, they could burst, causing a major flood.

If you have a gas water heater, turn the dial of the gas valve to the lowest setting possible. Some dials have a “vacation” setting.

Double check to make sure your sump pump is working properly.

“How do I check to make sure my sump pump is working correctly?”

Like any other home appliance, a sump pump requires the occasional maintenance check-up. To make sure your sump pump is working properly:

  1. Unplug the sump pump.
  2. Dump 5 gallons of water into the pit.
  3. Plug the pump back in and check to see if it is pumping out the water.
  4. Go outside to check that the pump is actually discharging water. Sometimes the pump will run, but it won’t pump any water out.

If you have a heating, plumbing or air conditioning common questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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