A List of Plumbing Tools That Every Homeowner Must Have

Plumbing ToolsWhile the professional plumbers of Reeves Family Plumbing will be there whenever you need us, there are some plumbing situations that you can handle on your own. There are a few specific plumbing tools you’ll need to do a more efficient job. Make sure you have these tools in your toolbox before your next plumbing problem.

Plunger

No residence should be without some type of plunger. Cup plungers are great for sending clogs through tub and sinks, flange plungers with non-splash ball cups are good for toilets and bellows plungers can be used for all other jobs.

Closet Auger

Closet augers are great for grabbing and breaking up stubborn clogs that your plunger can’t handle. Augers can be used in showers, toilets, tubs, sinks and drain lines.

Basin and Pipe Wrench

Out of all of the plumbing tools that homeowner should have, the basin wrench is one of the best since it’s the only tool that can do what it does, which is loosen and tighten the nuts on your sink faucet. Pipe wrenches are used on threaded pipes, fittings and nuts. One word of caution with the pipe wrench is that it can potentially ruin the finish on your fixture, so use the serrated teeth with caution.

Tongue-and-Groove Pliers

Also called water pump pliers, tongue-and-groove pliers are used to turn, loosen, twist and hold fittings, bolts and frozen parts. It’s best that you buy either a 10-inch or a 12-inch.

Allen Wrench Set or Hex Key

For those times when your garbage disposal is on the fritz, you’ll want to use either a hex key or an Allen wrench set. You’ll recognize these tools by their L-shape and hexagonal heads.

Propane Torch

For those DIY plumbing projects, a propane torch can become your best friend. Specifically, they’re great for sweat copper pipe and fittings. We recommend that you opt for a self-igniting torch head.

For more tips on plumbing tools, or if you have a plumbing problem that your tools just can’t handle, give Reeves Family Plumbing a call at 972-247-3763 .

4 Effective Tips to Lower Your Garbage Disposal Repair Cost

Garbage Disposal RepairAs with most appliances, regular maintenance and responsible usage are essential for reducing the garbage disposal repair cost you will have to pay. At Reeves Family Plumbing, we are always looking for ways to help our customers keep all of their home plumbing systems working at their best. Take a look at this quick list of tips from the Carrollton garbage disposal experts that will keep your unit running smoothly and garbage disposal repair cost to a minimum.

  1. Use Water Generously

Using water every time you run the disposal can help to ensure that food particles are fully ground and completely flushed through the pipes. Once you hear the grinding action of the disposal become a soft whir, turn the unit off, but allow the water to continue to run for another 10 to 20 seconds.

  1. Use Cold Water

While hot water is not necessarily harmful, cold water is usually preferable. Hot water tends to liquefy fats and grease, causing excessive buildup that can lead to blade or motor damage. Using cold water ensures that these substances congeal and pass through the system, rather than creating a clogging hazard.

  1. Avoid Grinding Hard Foods

It can be tempting to use the disposal for everything and anything food related, but items like popcorn kernels, bones, and peach pits can easily blunt blades and become wedged in the machinery. Fibrous items like onion skins and corn husks can also pose a jamming risk when they become wrapped around rotors and blades.

  1. Clean Regularly

Keep in mind that harsh chemicals can damage interior parts, leading to a high garbage disposal repair cost. To clean and deodorize your disposal gently, use a combination of baking soda and vinegar, or combine about a cup of rock salt with ice cubes when sharpening blades.

While good maintenance is a great start, remember that Reeves Family Plumbing is always available to assist with major repairs, replacements, and disposal emergencies. Contact our team today at [phone].

5 DIY Steps for Fixing a Leaky Sink

Fixing a Leaky SinkWhether you have a persistent drip or pooling water, at Reeves Family Plumbing we appreciate how frustrating faucet issues can be. We’ve put together a quick guide to fixing a leaky sink in five easy steps.

  • Turn Off Water

When fixing a leaky sink, the first thing you should do is turn off the supply of water to the faucet, from the main line. This can be done using the knobs beneath the sink.

  • Remove Handles

Next, you will want to remove any decorative pieces of the handle knobs, using a flat-head screwdriver to gently pry them free. Beneath each knob, you will find a screw mounting the handle to the stem. Unscrew each of these and remove the handles completely. A penetrating oil like WD-40 can help to loosen any tight-fitting hardware.

  • Remove Stem

Using a wrench, loosen the packing nut to reveal the stem, and remove both pieces. Depending on your faucet, the stem may either twist free or simply pop off. Check these parts for any damage.

  • Inspect O-Rings

Next, inspect your O-ring as well as the washer seated inside the valve. Poorly seated washers and deteriorating O-rings are frequently the cause of simple leaks. Replace the washer and O-rings, making sure that the new pieces are an exact fit.

  • Reassemble Faucet

Finally, reassemble all pieces in the following order: washer, new O-ring, faucet stem, packing nut, screw, and handle. Open the lines to your faucet and slowly turn the handle knob to verify that the leak has been repaired.

In many cases, these steps are all you will need when fixing a leaky sink. However, sometimes the issue goes beyond a failing O-ring or loose washer, and may even be evidence of a serious underlying complication. Keep in mind that at Reeves Family Plumbing, we’re always happy to help with trickier repairs. For your most persistent plumbing problems in Carrollton, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Contact us today at [phone].

3 Surprising Facts About Commercial Water Heater Sediment

Water Heater MaintenanceWhile all storage water heaters have to contend with the natural buildup of mineral deposits, a commercial water heater has a need for high capacity performance, which can make frequent flushing and careful maintenance especially important. At Reeves Family Plumbing, we know how important a reliable supply of hot water can be for businesses and multifamily homes. Take a look at these three surprising facts about sediment buildup and commercial water heater maintenance.

  1. Leaky Tanks

In both gas and electric water heaters, sediment tends to accumulate on burner plates and heating elements, leading to a significant drop in efficiency. Additionally, sediment that becomes trapped beneath burner plates can lead to excessive temperatures that can warp components and even cause glass linings to melt.

  1. Bacterial Growth

A heater that produces a smell of sulfur or rotten eggs likely has a problem with bacterial growth. Together with sediment accretion, the oxygenation caused by such bacteria can quickly corrode tank linings and eventually cause major damage.

  1. Keeping Temperatures Optimal

While softening agents can help to slow sediment buildup, they can also reduce the life of your anode rod. You should keep in mind that sediment tends to develop rapidly at temperatures exceeding 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Maintaining a temperature of 130 degrees can help to slow accumulation, while still being hot enough to kill harmful bacteria.

Scheduling Regular Maintenance

Excessive noise, foul odors, and poor heating performance are important signs that your commercial water heater is in need of maintenance in Carrollton. While regular flushing is an important step that you can take to keep sediment in check, our expert technicians can help you to remove buildup completely.

Whether you have a plumbing emergency or you would like to schedule a service appointment, keep in mind that at Reeves Family Plumbing we’re always here to help. Contact us today at [phone].

Water Heater Maintenance: Preventing Sediment Buildup

When water is heated in a water heater, minerals that are naturally present in the water begin to come together to form a precipitate, or sediment. The lime sediment is much heavier than the water, so it all tends to sink to the bottom of the water heater. It is not uncommon to have 5-10 inches of sediment sitting at the bottom of your tank, completely encasing and insulating the heating element. At Reeves Family Plumbing, our plumbers know that unless the sediment is removed, it can potentially cause homeowners some serious headaches. Luckily, some simple water heater maintenance can keep this common issue from becoming a big problem.

Use a Water Softener

Water softener works by replacing the damaging magnesium and calcium ions that causes hard water with sodium ions, which are harmless. Adding a water softener to your system may help break down the sediment and help your heater work like new again.

Drain the Water Heater

The most effective water heater maintenance tip on preventing the buildup of sediment in your tank is to drain the water regularly. The flow of water out of the tank will take the sediment with it and help reduce the amount of buildup in your tank. Removing the sediment will help extend the life of your water heater, so it is worth the time and effort required to schedule regular drains according to the tank’s manufacturer’s instructions.

While these preventative water heater maintenance steps should significantly slow the accumulation of debris at the bottom of the tank, some sediment will remain and accumulate over time. Eventually the sediment will result in an ineffective or broken water heater and your tank will need to be replaced. Our Coppell plumbers at Reeves Family Plumbing are happy to help resolve any water heater issues you have, whether it is regular maintenance or a serious problem. Call us at 214-989-4906 to schedule an appointment today.

3 Signs You Are in Need of Pipe Repair

One of the things homeowners dread most is a leaky pipe. Not only can a single leaky pipe or hose cause a lot of damage in a small amount of time, it can also lead to health problems for a home’s inhabitants. At Reeves Family Plumbing, our plumbers in Carrollton understand how devastating a leak can become, so we invite you to take note of the following warning signs that you may be in serious need of pipe repair.

1. High Water Bills

This if often the first thing people notice with hidden leaks. If your water bill is so high that you can’t believe you could have possibly used that much water, you probably didn’t and a leak is to blame.

2. Leak Registers on the Water Meter

Your home’s water meter is usually located beneath a metal covering in your yard or close to the street. Examine the meter’s leak indicator. If it is spinning, it means that there is water moving through the system and you have a leak. If you have no leak indicator, examine the location of the analog dial and then return after a half hour to an hour. If the dial has moved, you are in need of pipe repair.

Changes in the Walls, Ceilings and Floors

Any kind of dramatic change to the surfaces of your home may indicate leaky pipes. If you notice any of the following signs of water damage and cannot locate the source, a hidden leak is likely:

  • Bubbling
  • Warping
  • Sagging
  • Staining
  • Mold or mildew

Although some of these symptoms alone are not enough to prove there is a leak, when two or more combine, it is almost guaranteed. If you find a leak, contact us at Reeves Family Plumbing by calling 214-989-4906 to get your pipe repair job done completely and efficiently.

How to Quickly Clear a Clogged Drain

Clogged DrainClogged drains are, unfortunately, just a part of everyday life. Although the situation may be nearly unavoidable, many homeowners can prepare by learning how to handle minor clogs on their own. With only a few simple tools and some elbow grease, a clogged drain can be back to normal in no time. At Reeves Family Plumbing, our Carrollton plumbers are always ready to help deal with difficult clogs when they are just too much to handle.

Prepare Your Tools

The first step in any DIY project is to prepare your tools. The most basic plumber tool is the plunger, and it can be used to clear a clogged drain on various fixtures, including toilets, sinks, and tubs. They are generally inexpensive and can be found at any home improvement store and even some grocery stores.

Attack the Clog

To clear a clogged drain on any kind of fixture, first add a little water to the reservoir. If you have a double sink, stuff a wet rag into the drain you are not plunging, ensuring it covers the opening completely. If your bathroom sink is clogged, stuff the wet rag in the overflow hole. To begin, take the plunger and place the large, rubber inverted bowl over the mouth of the drain and start pumping the handle up and down directly toward the drain. Do this vigorously for a few seconds and then quickly remove the plunger. If the drain is clear, the water will quickly start to retreat. If you notice that some but not all water is getting through, a few more pumps should finish the clog for good.

If a clog seems to be stuck and doesn’t respond to your efforts after a few attempts, our plumbers at Reeves Family Plumbing would be happy to handle the job for you. Schedule an appointment today by calling 214-989-4906.

How to Unclog a Drain With Household Ingredients

Unclog a Drain

No one likes to find out that their drain is clogged. Unclogging a drain can be an annoying task, and many people decide to wait until the drain is completely stopped up before they try to do anything about it. At Reeves Family Plumbing, our expert plumbers know how to get the job done quickly and can help correct other plumbing problems as well. With a few simple homemade remedies, you can learn how to unclog a drain before seeking professional help.

Homemade Drain Cleaner

If your drain is moderately clogged, there is a simple drain cleaner that you can make at home with ingredients you probably already have. The following are the steps you can take to unclog a drain on your own:

  1. Take ½ cup of baking soda and pour it below the drain.
  2. Pour ½ cup of vinegar immediately after the baking soda.
  3. Allow the ingredients to interact. There will be foam and fumes.
  4. Place the drain cover loosely over the drain and allow it to sit for approximately three hours.
  5. Run hot water down the drain.
  6. Repeat if necessary.

Is grease causing the clog? Use this homemade recipe to get rid of the it:

  1. Put ½ cup of baking soda and ½ cup of salt into the drain.
  2. Pour boiling water down after it.
  3. Allow this mixture to work overnight.

Keep Your Drain Unclogged 

With these easy homemade drain cleaners, you can take care of some of the simple clogging issues you may run into. For severely clogged drains, or other maintenance and repair jobs, don’t hesitate to call in the professionals. Our Carrollton plumbing technicians are here to unclog a drain that’s giving you problems. Contact us here at Reeves Family Plumbing by calling (972) 247-3763.

How to Properly Take Care of Grease Disposal

Grease Disposal

Some of the most delicious food items are made with cooking oil or leave extra grease in the pan. After you make your bacon or fries, grease disposal can be difficult. The one thing you should remember is to never pour the leftover grease down the drain. Once it solidifies, it can clog the drain and cause all kinds of issues. If your drain does become clogged or you have other plumbing issues, our technicians at Reeves Family Plumbing are here to help.

Three Steps to Properly Dispose of Grease

If you want to know how to properly handle your grease disposal, follow these simple steps:

  1. Allow the pan to cool. Before you remove any oil from your pan or other cooking equipment, you should let the oil cool first. Hot cooking oil can cause severe burns if it is accidentally spilled on yourself or someone else around you.
  2. Choose a container. If there is just a small amount of oil left, you can just wipe it out with a paper towel. However, if there is quite a bit of oil, you need to choose what container you would like to pour the leftover grease into. It is best if you avoid glass jars, which could break if dropped. Peanut butter jars or tin cans work great.
  3. Throw the container away. Once you have poured the leftover grease into the container of your choice, it is a good idea to let it solidify. You can even reuse the container until it is full of solid grease before throwing it away. Make sure you screw on the lid tight before it goes in the trash.

A clogged drain is the last thing you want at the end of the day. Avoid this issue by following these steps for proper grease disposal. At Reeves Family Plumbing, our plumbers in Carrollton are standing by to help you with any problems you come across. Contact us today at (972) 247-3763.

 

Things You Shouldn’t Put Down the Garbage Disposal

 

Garbage Disposal

Garbage disposals are one of those things that you don’t really appreciate until you live in a place that doesn’t have one. This appliance is the perfect way to get rid of the leftover food on your plate. However, despite what you might think, not everything can be put down the garbage disposal. It should not be mistaken for a trash can. At Reeves Family Plumbing, we can take care of any plumbing repairs or maintenance you may need.

 

Three Things to Avoid Putting in the Disposal

In order to avoid costly repairs, it is important that you are aware of what items you should not put down the disposal. Here are three things to avoid:

 

  1. Pasta and Rice. When pasta and rice come into contact with water, they swell. Even if you run the water for a while or run the disposal, pieces of pasta and rice cannot be broken down small enough. These pieces end up together in the trap and close off the pipes.
  2. Grease. Although grease is liquid and seems like it would go down the drain without a problem, eventually it solidifies. This creates a clog in part or all of the drain. No amount of running the disposal can fix this problem.
  3. Animal Bones and Vegetable Peels. The disposal is not strong enough to break animal bones into small pieces to fit down the drain. Tough vegetable peels such as potato peels can also be hard on the disposal if they are in a large amount. Both of these items could jam in the disposal and possibly break it.

 

Qualified Help for Plumbing Problems

By making an effort to not put these items down the drain, you can avoid breaking your garbage disposal. At Reeves Family Plumbing, our Carrollton plumbers are here to help with all of your plumbing needs. Give us a call today at (972) 247-3763.