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Quick Guide: What's a Sump Pump & How Does It Work?

A sump pump is an invaluable tool in most basements. If you live in a flood-prone area, your home is likely already equipped with one.  When it rains heavily, water may find its way into your basement.  As soon as a flooding threat presents itself, the sump pump will activate and begin flushing water out of your home and back outside. This prevents water damage and mold growth.

As you’ll see in this video, sump pumps are an excellent precautionary idea for all basements. If you need help maintaining or installing a sump pump, give All Plumbing Inc. a call at (571) 451-2971 or visit us online.

Do You DIY? Check Out These 4 Helpful Plumbing Resources

plumbing tools

The plumbing system is exceptionally important in any building. Whether it is for bathrooms, kitchens, or fire sprinklers, plumbing must be cared for and maintained. To learn more about plumbing systems and their maintenance, take a look at these helpful links:   

  • Use this guide to learn how to neutralize potent Drano chemicals in the event of a spill or splash.
       
  • Read this article from the Maryland Gazette to find out why plumbers say Drano should be a last resort.
        
  • EnergySavers.gov has a few tips for minimizing your hot water use to save money and energy.
       
  • How Stuff Works has a great set of instructions for unclogging various types of drains.
       
  • For more information, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971.

Don't Ruin Your Weekend - Steer Clear of Dangerous DIY Projects!

A do-it-yourself project can be a fun and challenging way to spend a Sunday afternoon, but it’s important to make sure that you are doing the project safely. Watch this video for some valuable tips for steering clear of potentially dangerous DIY projects.

Beginners should stick to smaller jobs such as hanging pictures or assembling bookcases. Never work if you are tired or distracted from what you are doing. Most importantly, never attempt plumbing and electrical projects yourself, as these are challenging and often risky tasks that should be left to trained professionals.
    
When you need a dependable plumber, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971. We have been providing first-rate plumbing services to the Northern Virginia community for more than three decades. Visit us online to learn more about our services.

Need Plumbing Tips? Learn More about Our Recent Blog Topics!

Plumber at Work

The plumbing system is exceptionally important in any building. Whether it's for bathrooms, kitchens, or fire sprinklers, plumbing must be carefully monitored, cared for, and maintained. If you need to learn more about plumbing systems and their maintenance, take a look at the helpful links below!

  • Learn some tips for making your plumbing more eco-friendly from the US Environmental Protection Agency.
  • Check out this slide show of environmentally friendly alternatives to everyday services from EverydayHealth.com.
  • Take a look at this How Stuff Works article to learn about home fire sprinkler systems.
  • Read through the NFPA website for some statistics and other fire sprinkler information.
  • Get some tips for maintaining a clean and clear drain in your sinks and showers from Popular Mechanics.

To learn more or speak with a reliable, professional plumber, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971. We are a locally owned and operated plumbing business that offers 24/7 emergency services and over 30 years of experience in Northern Virginia.

 

Tired of Clogged Drains? How to Prevent Build-up in your Sink and Shower Drain

Plumbing Service - Kitchen Sink

There are many factors that can lead to a blocked drain.  Fortunately, there are also ways to prevent these troublesome clogs. Maintaining a clean drain and clearing small clogs when they first present themselves are great ways to avoid dealing with serious drain blockage problems. Here is a guide to keeping your sink and shower drains clear:

  • Clear Hair and Grease Traps
    Every time you take a shower, at least a few hairs get caught in the drain’s hair trap and begin to create a clog. Similarly, grease and other food products can clog a kitchen sink. Removing hair and grease after each use can help prevent the most common clogs.
  • Use Simple Cleaning Products
    Some simple homemade cleaning agents can greatly help to reduce, prevent, or remove clogs. In the shower or sink, a mixture of vinegar and baking soda will help to break up some of the material that may be stuck in your drain. Grease that has made its way past a grease trap can be loosened and flushed with hot saltwater.
  • Avoid Flushing Debris 
    Many clogs happen when people flush material that does not belong in the drain. Trying to flush the smaller hair clogs past your hair trap or sending food down the drain in your kitchen sink without a garbage disposal can lead to serious blockages. Try to drain only soap and water and throw anything else in the garbage.
  • Stop Clogs Early 
    Small clogs can usually be cleared up easily, so pay attention to signs of a small clog and catch it early. This will save you the trouble of trying to release a more serious blockage at the cost of more time, money, and effort in the future. When you first notice the signs of a clogged drain, take action immediately. Use some of the above tips or call a reliable plumbing service to take care of the problem.


If your showers, sinks, or toilets are not flushing properly, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971 today. We have provided excellent emergency and scheduled plumbing services in Northern Virginia for over 30 years. Contact us online for more information or to schedule an appointment.

4 Environmentally-Friendly Plumbing Upgrades!

World's big hug

Many people are taking smart actions to become more environmentally friendly, from driving hybrid cars to installing high-efficiency windows. But, did you know that there are many simple plumbing upgrades that can make your home even more efficient and eco-friendly? Here is a guide to some of the environmentally-friendly options for your home’s plumbing system:

  • Low Flow Toilets
    Many people with older or less efficient toilets can use as many as 3.5 gallons of water per flush. This can add up to over 33,000 gallons of water flushed per year for some families, which is far more than necessary. A low flow toilet will only use an average of 1.28 gallons or less per flush, cutting water use by more than 60%. This is not only good for the environment, but also for your wallet.
  • Faucet Aerators
    Bathroom sinks are used for many purposes throughout the day and are often a large source of wasted water. Faucet aerators add air to the flow of water, allowing the tap to produce the same water pressure while using fewer gallons per minute. 
  • Water Saving Shower Heads
    Showers are another source of significant water usage.  Depending on the duration of the shower and the efficiency of the shower head, hundreds of gallons may be used per day. Shower heads with aerators or lower pressure can save a lot of water and money.
  • Tankless Water Heaters
    Conventional water heaters store large amounts of water in reservoirs, keeping the water constantly heated. This uses a great deal of energy and limits the amount of hot water a home has available at any single point. Tankless water heaters heat water immediately and only as necessary, saving both energy and water.


If you're dedicated to making your home more environmentally friendly and efficient, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971 and ask about our many services today. We have been providing Northern Virginia with excellent plumbing services for over 30 years. Contact us online for more information.

Fire! How Does a Fire Sprinkler Work?

Sprinkler sprinkling

As a layer of safety, many commercial and residential buildings are outfitted with fire sprinkler systems. These sprinklers are a great way to ensure the safety of a building and its occupants in the event of a fire, but only if they work properly. So, how do they actually work? Here is a brief guide to the workings of a standard fire sprinkler system:

  • Construction
    Fire sprinklers are simple, yet effective, systems. Water is supplied to the systems through a series of pipes, just like in any other basic plumbing system, and diverted to strategically placed sprinkler heads. In some systems, each sprinkler head has a sensor connected to a release valve. In other systems, the sprinklers are triggered by a separate sensor or control unit.
     
  • Activation
    When a fire occurs in a building with a sprinkler system, there are several methods of sprinkler activation. In many automatic systems, there's a sensor in each sprinkler head that supports a release valve. This sensor is often made of a meltable material or a glass tube with a liquid that will expand when heated. High temperatures cause these valves to break or melt, releasing a localized spray of water. Other systems use a separate sensor to trigger one or more sprinklers simultaneously.
     
  • Effectiveness
    Fire sprinklers provide a great deal of protection for residential and commercial buildings, often stopping fires before they can damage much of the affected room or area. The NFPA reports that fire sprinklers in a home work effectively 92% of the time, reducing the average amount of property loss by 71%, and the risk of death by 80%.

If you need the sprinkler system in your building maintained, or if you want to install one in your home or office, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971 and set up an appointment today. We offer various plumbing services, including 24-hour emergency plumbing in Northern Virginia. Contact us online to learn more about our products and services.

Do You Take Tap Water Purity for Granted?

We often take the purity of tap water for granted. The water supplied to our homes and businesses from municipal and other sources is carefully filtered. Backflow, however, causes a serious threat to that water and to our confidence in its distribution.

 

This video from the American Backflow Prevention Association explains the hazards of backflow, as well as the basics of how it can work. The various speakers discuss the importance of proper water pressure and flow direction maintenance and the importance of backflow prevention devices.

 

If you want to make sure that your home is protected against causing or experiencing backflow problems, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971 today. We have 30 years of experience in Northern Virginia

 

3 Dangers of Relying on Drano Products for Tough Clogs

Risks Ahead

A clogged drain is an issue most people have to deal with at least once a year. Whether it is in the bathroom, the kitchen, or even the garage, one of the most common solutions people turn to is pouring a product, like Drano, down the drain to try to break up the clog. Sometimes, this will work, but for tougher clogs, it should not be relied upon. Here is an overview of the risks involved in using Drano on tough clogs:

 

  • Uncertainty: When your drain is clogged, it means that there is a blockage somewhere in the pipes, which you most likely cannot see. This means that it is impossible to accurately judge the exact cause and severity of the clog. You may end up pouring Drano products onto a blockage that will not dissolve or may partially dissolve and cause another clog quickly.

 

  • Ineffectiveness: Regardless of the claims of Drano and similar products, they are not surefire solutions to your drainage problems. These products can cause a wide variety of reactions in your drainage system, depending on the cause of the clog. Dense clogs caused by hair may actually become tougher to remove after being exposed to Drano.

 

  • Splashing on Skin: The active ingredients in Drano include sodium hypochlorite and the strong base sodium hydroxide. These are both very poisonous to people and animals and can cause serious burns and other health problems if exposed to the skin or eyes. A danger of using Drano on any clogs is the risk of splashing on oneself or splashing on surfaces that a child may touch.

 

If you have a clog and you want to be certain that it is safely removed, call All Plumbing, Inc. at (571) 451-2971 and set up a service appointment today. We are a locally owned and operated plumbing business that offers 24/7 emergency services and over 30 years of experience in Northern Virginia.

4 Helpful Resources for Your Plumbing Questions

Decision making

How much should you worry if you have a gas leak? What do you need to know about sump pump maintenance? How can you go about conserving water? For the answer to these questions and other plumbing quandaries, check out the following resources:

  • Pinal County in Arizona has a flier on gas pipe installation. Remember that installation isn't easy, so consider hiring a professional if you need work done on your gas lines.
  • How severe are gas leaks? HowStuffWorks can give you a quick overview on what to do in case of a gas leak, but the short answer is to evacuate your home and call a professional immediately.
  • Cleaning up a flooded home isn't easy. Make sure to wait until your home is dry before trying to replace the walls. For more tips on what to do after a flooded home, check out this resource from North Dakota State University.
  • A sump pump can help you avoid water damage. To learn how to properly maintain your sump pump, check out this link from The Washington Post.

Call All Plumbing Inc. at (571) 451-2971 today to learn more about our plumbing services.  We provide many services including renovation work, drain cleaning, hydrojetting, and plumbing repair services. For more information, give us a call at (571) 451-2971 or visit us online.

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