Wm. Henderson Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc. Blog : Archive for September, 2012

Plumber’s Tip: Causes of and Solutions for Frequent Drain Clogs

Monday, September 24th, 2012

Are you getting tired of your kitchen and bathroom drains being clogged on what seems like a daily basis? Plunging the drains, taking them apart to remove a build up of grease and food particles or simply having to call a
Havertown plumber seemingly every month to have a clogged drain snaked – none of this is very appealing to the average homeowner. Fortunately, there are a few preventive tasks you can perform that will reduce the risk of so many clogs.

  • Hair and Food – Hair and food are not meant to go down your drains. A little bit every now and then won’t hurt, but if your drains are open and you allow everything in the fixture to flush down, you’re going to have a problem. Get strainers for your sinks and bathtub and even consider a garbage disposal for your kitchen sink.
  • Grease – In the kitchen it is tempting to just rinse off that frying pan and let the grease on it go down the drain. After all, it’s liquid right? Won’t it continue into the sewer line? Unfortunately, grease that is liquid when being rinsed away will soon solidify, especially as the water around it cools. Combined with hair or food particles, it can create truly stubborn clogs deep in your drains.
  • Non Flushable Items – Certain items are not meant to be flushed. You’ll notice that toilet paper disintegrates almost the second it gets wet – it has been designed for flushing down the toilet. Napkins, paper towels and tissues, among other things, are not meant to be flushed.

The vast majority of drain clogs are completely preventable with some basic changes to how you clean, do dishes and use fixtures in both your kitchen and your bathroom. Make a few simple changes to the rules in your home and ensure everyone understands what can and cannot go down the drain and the vast majority of your problems will be alleviated for good.

For any plumbing service in the Havertown area, give Wm. Henderson Plumbing & Heating Inc. a call!

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Heating Guide: Fall Maintenance Tasks

Monday, September 17th, 2012

Fall can sometimes be a busy time for people, especially for families getting back into the swing of school and fall sports. But for all Newtown Square homeowners, the season is perfect for getting a maintenance check on your heating and air conditioning system. This is usually not a busy time for HVAC companies and they can usually come out at a time that’s convenient for you.

One thing you can always do on your own is clean or change the air filters in your system. Some models just need to be taken out and washed, while others are replaceable. When you take time to clean or change the air filter, it adds to the life of your system. When a filter is dirty, the system has to work harder, which increases the amount of energy it needs to run and can cause your energy bills to go up considerably. A dirty filter can also lead to damage to the other components of your system, which could potentially lead to failure and the need to replace it in the future.

When you call on a professional Newtown Square heating technician to do routine maintenance, there are several things they will do. First, they will turn the system on and begin inspecting it. They will check the thermostat settings to make sure you’re getting the most out of each setting. Then they will tighten all the electrical connections on the systems and lubricate any moving parts it may have.

They will also check the condensation drain while the system is turned to air conditioning mode to make sure everything looks okay. When a drain gets clogged it can cause water damage, which is a potentially expensive problem to fix.

A professional technician will also check all the controls on the system to make sure they are operating correctly. They should start, operate and shut off promptly.

Specifically in the fall months, professional technicians will look to make sure all oil or gas connections are hooked up properly, make sure the gas pressure is working, and that the burner combustion as well as the heat exchanger are all doing their jobs properly. Preventative maintenance is the key to getting the most life out of your heating and cooling system. To schedule an appointment today, give Wm. Henderson Plumbing & Heating Inc. a call!

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Heating Guide: Installing a New Heating System? Read This First

Monday, September 10th, 2012

If you are looking to install a new, more efficient heating system for your Bryn Mawr house, you are on the right path. However, there are a few checks you can run before getting too deeply involved in this project. The following are some significant things you should look out for before installing a new heating system:

Air Leaks

Before you go ahead and install your new heating system, make sure you check the air ducts in your home for leakages. Any such leakages should be eliminated immediately. You may already know that sealing these leaks is an energy saving and cost effective step most of us forget to take.


Your Bryn Mawr heating system will function more efficiently if the room air is balanced. This means that when the doors of all the rooms are closed, they should all have the same air pressure on both sides. You can conduct the following tests to assess the air pressure levels in your home.

  • Turn on the furnace or just the fan if that’s possible.
  • Shut the door of the room you’re carrying out the test in.
  • Light an incense stick.
  • Now open the room with just a little space for your finger to fit in.
  • Hold the incense stick there for a while.

If this smoke blows back at your face, you might have a problem. Even if it gets back into the room at a relaxed pace, there is still a problem. If this persists, you will need to remove the door or keep some kind of opening from the room so the air pressure can be balanced. Apart from this, you must also get your furnace filter and heat exchanger checked.

For more information about installing a new heating system in Bryn Mawr, give Wm. Henderson Plumbing Heating Cooling Services a call today!


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Plumber’s Guide: Tree Roots and Other Dangers – What’s in Your Pipes?

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

All the sewers, waste pipes and drains from your Springfield PA home lead directly to the septic tank or municipal sewer. To ensure that water flows through these pipes smoothly, it is important to keep them clog-free. To do this, you must always be careful about what you flush down the drains, sewers and toilets in your home.

Apart from the common household items that can clog drains, sewer pipes, especially those made of clay or cast iron can get blocked with tree roots. Roots grow through the joints and continue growing inside the pipes, eventually leading to a complete blockage.

To keep this from happening, it is necessary to perform a few periodic checks. First, find out which path the sewer pipe takes from your home to the street and check if there are any bushes or trees along the path. If there are any trees, you can control the growth of roots in the pipes by treating the sewer with a solution periodically.

It is important to call the right Springfield PA plumbing professionals to do this to ensure that they know how to go about keeping your sewer lines clear. If tree roots are a danger to your system, they will first drill a two-and-half inch diameter hole above sewer line. About two feet above the ground, a twenty-inch PVC pipe will then be inserted into the hole. This one-and-a-half inch pipe will be glued to an adapter on one end where a cap will be screwed on to it about two inches below the ground.

They will then pour hot water and copper sulphate crystals halfway into the pipe and wait for the copper sulphate to dissolve and seep into the ground. This will keep any tree roots from growing in the sewer. To keep roots from growing repeatedly, this procedure must be carried out at least once every four months.

Another alternative is to pour the solution to keep roots from growing down the clean out fitting. This will usually be located at the side of your home. Remember, however, that you should never clean your sewer using caustic drain cleaners as they can severely damage pipes. If you find roots blocking your sewer pipes, you need Springfield PA plumbing professional help in getting them cleared out.

Prevention is always better than emergency repairs. To ensure that roots do not grow in the sewer and drain pipes, take the above precautions. If roots do grow, call Wm. Henderson Plumbing & Heating Inc. immediately to get them removed.


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