Basnett Plumbing, Heating & AC Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Plumbing Installation’

Questions to Ask a Plumber Before Choosing One

Monday, August 26th, 2019
technician-with-business-card

When you’re looking to a hire a new plumber, you’ll have numerous choices available. The internet makes it easier than ever to pull up a lengthy list of local plumbing contractors. But more choices rarely mean better choices. It isn’t simple finding a plumber who can deliver quality work, excellent customer service, and whom you can trust over all.

The best way to find out if you’ve found the right plumber is to take a proactive approach and ask questions. Don’t feel bashful about this! You aren’t being rude. Plumbers are professionals and should expect questions from potential customers. And they should be able to answer them honestly.

Below are questions to ask any plumber in Sudbury, MA whom you’re considering as your on-going permanent plumber.

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How to Tell When Your Plumbing Fixtures Need Replacement

Monday, August 14th, 2017

kitchen-sink-faucet-waterMost homeowners hope that broken plumbing components in the house can be repaired, rather than replaced. They would prefer to hang on to their older appliances and fixtures—toilets, sinks, and faucets—as long as possible before having to replace them. But eventually, any part of your household systems, even those that seem most durable, need replacement.

Our plumbers are here to help, offering a guide for when you can hang on to your older fixtures and get repairs that will hold up, and when it’s time to let go. Thankfully, we offer the services you need to get plumbing repairs or the right fixture into your home as soon as possible for your plumbing in Maynard, MA!

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Concord, MA Plumbing Tip: What is a Grease Trap?

Monday, February 18th, 2013

Basnett Plumbing & Heating offers grease trap installation in Concord, MA and surrounding areas. Call one of our professional plumbers if you are considering a grease trap or would like to know more about benefits of installing one. First, we’ve put together a short post explaining how a grease trap works to help you decide which kitchen appliances work best for your needs.

Grease traps can collect extra cooking oil or grease that gets clogged in your drain lines. Modern grease traps have been around since the late 1800s, and today they are installed as small boxes inside the drain line that connects the kitchen sink to the sewer system. You can find them in a variety of materials, such as cast iron, stainless steel, plastics, and even concrete. Sizes range greatly, so it is important to know how much capacity you need, or if you want one installed inside the kitchen or outside your home.

Perhaps the most common type of residential grease trap is a passive grease trap, which is a small point of use unit installed under the kitchen sink, just like a garbage disposal install. Even if you have a garbage disposal, you can still install a grease trap under the sink to prevent clogs. While installing a grease trap is more common in restaurants, homeowners who cook more often may benefit from the installation of a grease trap. It really depends on the condition of your pipes and how much use they get.

Keep in mind that once your grease trap is installed, it will need to be maintained and cleaned regularly for optimal performance. We can handle all your grease trap maintenance and repair services as well. Call the Concord, MA plumbers at Basnett Plumbing & Heating for comprehensive grease trap installation services.

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Littleton, MA Plumbing Question: What Is a Sewage Ejector Pump?

Monday, November 26th, 2012

In some homes in Littleton, MA, sewage ejector pumps are a critical part of the plumbing system. There are a couple of different applications for this kind of equipment. At Basnett Plumbing & Heating, we’ve been working with customers throughout the Littleton, MA area for many years to make sure that their plumbing system works well. We thought that it would be helpful if we put together a basic explanation of what a sewer ejector pump is and how it is used.

How Sewage Flows

Many homes in Littleton, MA are designed so that gravity will pull the waste water from your kitchen, bathroom and laundry areas down into your septic tank or sewage system. This is not always possible.

The Sump Pump of Sewage

In homes that have fixtures below the grade of the sewer or septic lines, the sewage won’t flow up and out of the house on its own—it needs some help. The sewage ejector pump is installed in the lowest point of the home, typically in the basement. The sewage from the fixtures will drain into a basin, which is capable of holding about 40 gallons of liquid. The sewage ejector pump is activated by a float, similar to the one in the tank of your toilet. The pump will push the sewage up a pipe that meets the normal sewer line of your home so that it can drain out into your septic tank or sewer system.

When to Install a Sewage Ejector Pump

If you’ve just started to notice that your plumbing system is having trouble draining out of your home, it could be that you need an ejector pump. Sometimes this can be the result of a clog, but if you’ve had your pipes inspected, you may want to ask your plumber in Littleton, MA about the possibility of putting in an ejector pump.

Of course, the best time to put one in is if you’re getting ready to do a new construction project. It is an intensive job that requires a lot of digging and jackhammering through concrete.

If you have any questions about the plumbing in your home, call the expert plumbers at Basnett Plumbing. We have years of experience offering top quality plumbing services in the Littleton, MA area. Give us a call today.

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Littleton MA Plumbing Question: What is a Faucet Aerator?

Monday, October 29th, 2012

A tap aerator or faucet aerator is located on the tip of water faucets which are used indoors such as kitchen and bathroom sink faucets.  Their purpose is to spread the water stream into a number of smaller streams, in essence adding air to the water stream.  This saves the amount of water which comes out of the tap at one time while also reducing the amount of backsplash which occurs when the faucet is turned on.

Utilizing faucet aerators can be one of the most inexpensive ways to save money on water consumption and save energy with your Littleton MA home’s plumbing system.

There are two main types of faucet aerators, some which use metal or plastic screens to separate the water, and some which do not use screens. One advantage to those without screens is that they eliminate problematic clogging which occurs on screen aerators due to sediment buildup.  There are also aerators with off-valves and swivel aerators which allow users to direct flow to wherever the water spray is needed.

There are three main flow-types seen today. The needle method creates a circular pattern of small, single streams of water with no water-flow in the very center.  The aerated method created a tubular flow with air mixed into the water, creating a single stream of bubbly water.  The laminar method has no air mixed in which makes for a single stream of water with no bubbles.

Many aerators are designed as more economical low-flow aerators which optimize the water flow while still providing optimal water-flow performance.  In kitchens these low-flow options decrease flow from 2.2 gallons per minute to 1.5 gpm or 1.0 gpm, saving anywhere from 32% to 54% of water-usage.  On bathroom faucets the water-flow is decreased from 2.2 gpm to 1.0 gpm or even 0.5 gpm saving from 77% to 84% of water usage.  When engineered properly, low-flow or economic aerators can provide increased perceived water pressure while in actuality helping to save water.

When purchasing new faucet aerators, ensure that you find the proper type (male or female) and the proper size (regular or small).  There are dual-thread options for those who do not know whether a male or female aerator is necessary.  Also, look at the tap aerator’s price in conjunction with how much savings it can provide in water usage annually and see how little must be spent on each faucet in order to save hundreds of dollars.

For more information about how to improve your Littleton MA home’s plumbing, give Basnett Plumbing & Heating a call today!

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Lancaster Plumbing Tip: A Low Cost Way to Brighten a Kitchen or Bath

Monday, August 13th, 2012

Many older homes in Lancaster still have the original faucets, toilets, shower heads, and other plumbing fixtures installed by the builder. Like most contractor-grade components, those fixtures were  probably designed to be strictly practical, with very little styling or decorative flair.

Contractors aren’t architects or interior designers. They’re focused mainly on installing the infrastructure of the plumbing system – the water delivery and waste pipes. It’s not their job to pick out elegant or cutting edge fixtures. They also can’t predict the taste of a home’s future occupants, so it makes no sense to install distinctive fixtures that might be removed or, worse, contribute to a potential buyer’s negative impression of the home.

That means many homeowners spend years living with plumbing fixtures deliberately intended to be bland and unnoticeable. There’s nothing wrong with that, but consider how many times each day we use our bathroom and kitchen faucets. How many times per week do we take a bath or use the shower? The simple pleasure of seeing and touching an attractive, well designed faucet is a little perk that can help brighten the day.

Higher end plumbing fixtures can be pricey, but factor in how long most fixtures last and you’re only paying a few pennies or less per day. Plumbing fixture design has become much more consumer-driven. Companies must compete by offering an expanding variety of styles.  The new passion for cooking has increased the demand for professional grade kitchen faucets that can stand up to hard use, have pullout sprayers, and accommodate large pans. New shower head designs provide a more comfortable, invigorating spray. Sink faucets with elegant finishes of bronze, brushed nickel, or brilliant brass can liven a bathroom. Ergonomically correct handles are easier to use and more inviting to touch.

There are also practical reasons for replacing fixtures. With improvements in materials technology the interior seals of faucets and other fixtures are more resistant to mineral build up and corrosion that can cause leaks. Metal finishes are more durable and resistant to dulling from soap or detergent.

Installing a new, attractive faucet won’t provide a total kitchen or bathroom makeover, but it will provide a spark that brightens the room and makes everyday living just a little more fun.  For more information about how to improve your Lancaster plumbing, give Basnett Plumbing & Heating a call today!

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Acton Plumber’s Guide: Why Buy WaterSense Labeled Fixtures?

Monday, June 11th, 2012

If you have been shopping for new plumbing fixtures in Acton lately, or even just wandered through that section of the home improvement store, you have probably noticed that some of them bear a familiar label.

“Just what is this ‘WaterSense’ company and why have I never heard of them before?” you may ask yourself. “Are they a new manufacturer?”

No, it’s not a new fixture company. WaterSense is a program in partnership with the Environment Protection Agency designed to make it easier for consumers to find, identify and choose products that use water more efficiently. You can find it on a number of faucets, shower heads and toilets. Even some newly built homes that exclusively have WaterSense fixtures installed bear the certification.

In order to wear the WaterSense label, a product has to meet strict criteria, such as using water at least 20% more efficiently than its average competitor, while also performing at least we well, and obtaining certification from an independent third party.

That’s all well and good, buy why should anyone buy a WaterSense labeled fixture? What are the benefits? In contrast to older or less efficient products, fixtures with the WaterSense label:

  • Are better for the environment
  • Reduce water consumption
  • Operate more efficiently
  • Employ more advanced technology
  • Perform as well as or better then competing products
  • Save you money on utility bills

As with the EnergyStar label that graces so many appliances and electronic devices these days, in this case what is good for the environment is also good for your wallet. The added efficiency of WaterSense products reduces water consumption, which not only conserves water for everyone, but conserves money for you.

So, for homeowners who are in the market for new plumbing fixtures and like to save the planet as well as some money, WaterSense labeled products are the way to go. For more information about ways to improve the plumbing in your Acton home, give Basnett Plumbing & Heating a call today!

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Littleton Plumbing Guide: Water Saving in a New Home

Monday, May 7th, 2012

New homes offer many new water saving features which older homes tend not to offer.  Water saving in a new home  in Littleton can be quite simple, considering all the new technologies which are available to home builders.  Make yourself knowledgeable about these options and when you purchase a new home watch for these.  If you are building a home, it is good to communicate to the builder which of these options you want in water efficiency.

Indoor Water Saving Solutions

Up to 70% of water usage in residences happens indoors.  A number of items that new homes tend to provide save water usage and money in the long-run.

  • Fixtures such as toilets, bathroom faucets, and showerheads offer low-flow options
  • High efficiency and low energy use hot water heaters
  • New appliances such as dishwashers and clothes washers
  • Install a tankless water heater close to the most used hot water usage areas
  • Use of an on-demand style recirculation system in combination with a high efficiency water heater
  • Install a solar water heating system to preheat water which enters the tankless water heater
  • Check for leaks regularly to ensure there is no waste

Outdoor Water Conservation

Anywhere from 30% to 70% of water usage of homes is used outdoors for yard landscaping and pool upkeep.  When designing an outdoor space, it is important to keep in mind how much water will be used for upkeep, as well as to ensure that water is saved where possible.

Landscaping:

  • Properly plan and design the landscaping
  • Limit grass and lawn to 40% or less of landscaped areas
  • Choose plants and flora which are regionally appropriate
    • Group plants according to similar water usages
    • Use native plants and those which have low water needs
    • Schedule efficient irrigation
    • Use fixed-spray sprinklers on lawn
    • Use drip or micro irrigation on plants, flowers, and bushes
    • Water during cooler times of day to ensure little evaporation due to heat
    • Do not over-water, it can harm plants just as much as not watering enough
    • Use mulch to prevent evaporation of water near plants, and to keep weeds away
    • Keep the yard properly maintained and the soil healthy with fertilizers

Pool:

  • Use a pool cover when the pool is not in use; this can save 30% to 50% of water which is wasted through evaporation
  • Keep the pool temperature a few degrees lower, the higher the temperature of the water the more evaporation occurs
  • Plant a windbreak of tall foliage to prevent wind from whipping water out of the pool
  • Check and fix leaks regularly
  • Clean pool and pool filters regularly to prevent backwash

Whether indoors or outdoors, water saving in new homes is quite easy, and while some options mean spending some money initially, the long-term savings on water month over month and year over year are quite significant and worthwhile indeed. If you have any questions about upgrades you can make to your Littleton plumbing, give Basnett Plumbing & Heating a call today!

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