Wm. Henderson Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc. Blog

It’s the Season to Find Out If You Need a New Heater

October 22nd, 2018

autumn-backgroundIt’s already the second half of October, and Halloween decorations are all around. But as you enjoy the spooky fall festivities, it’s important to remember that winter is just around the corner. We don’t mean that you need to start pulling down those boxes of Christmas decorations just yet—you still have to get through Thanksgiving first!—but you should give some thought to whether you need a new heating installation this fall. If your current furnace or other residential heating system is near to the close of its useful service life, now is when you want the system replaced. You don’t want to rush to have it completed after the chill Pennsylvania winter has arrived!

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Make Sure Your Generator Is Ready for Winter!

October 8th, 2018

generator-residentialIf you have a whole-house generator as a power backup for your home, the time when you may need it the most is coming up soon—winter! With the extra strain placed on the power grid and the danger from storms, your house might suffer from an extended power outage this winter season. You want to make sure your backup generator can turn on and supply you with the electricity you need—otherwise, what good is it?

But please don’t just trust the generator will work. If you’ve already had your current backup generator for a few years, it’s important you take steps to make sure it’s in good shape. Should you find anything wrong, you can call us for generator repair and we’ll see the system is ready to take on any power loss. We’ll also replace an old generator that’s no longer reliable.

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Different Uses of Trenchless Technology in Plumbing

September 24th, 2018

Backhoe-bucket-with-pile-of-rocksIf you’re looking for plumbing services to handle working with the pipes outside your home—i.e. the sewer line and the water line—keep in mind that not all contractors have access to the same tools or training. When it comes to repairing and replacing pipes, many contractors still use standard digging methods to excavate the ground above the pipes. This is an effective technique, but it’s not an efficient one. Digging a trench to reach a pipe is time-consuming and labor-intensive. It’s also ugly, turning a pleasant yard and garden into something resembling an archaeological dig.

But you have a choice for contractors: you can call one who uses trenchless technology. This is a type of lateral boring that approaches buried pipes from the side. Only one or two small holes need to be dug to access the pipe.

Trenchless technology has several different uses in residential plumbing:

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As Summer Winds Down, Does Your AC Need Last-Minute Help?

September 11th, 2018

Scottish-terrierLate-summer doesn’t necessarily mean cooler weather. In fact, September often delivers some of the hottest days of the year—we had a few days peak in the 90s last week—and this warm weather often lingers through October. The AC keeping you cool still has some heavy work to do, and it may need some help from you at the last minute.

We recommend scheduling air conditioning repair as soon as you notice any troubles with your cooling system, no matter how late in the year. As long as you still require the air conditioner to provide comfort for your household, it’s important to react fast to any indications it isn’t working at its best.

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The Different Types of Plastic Pipes Plumbers Use

August 27th, 2018

worker-cut-PVC-pipes

Indoor plumbing has been around for a long time, and the materials used for the pipes have gone through many changes. For decades, metal and ceramic were the most common pipe materials. Many homes today still have galvanized steel, clay, or even cast iron piping. Starting in the 1970s, copper replaced galvanized steel and is today the most common metal used in plumbing systems.

Plastic pipes, however, have an important part in plumbing. Plastic is easier to work with in general than copper. The first use of plastic pipes was in the 1930s, and with the 1960s they rose in popularity among plumbers thanks to advances in plastic manufacturing that made these pipes more useful in general.

There’s no single type of plastic used to manufacture pipes. For years, a gray plastic called polybutylene was common for plumbing systems, but it’s no longer used because it splits and creates leaks. If you have old polybutylene pipes in your house, we strongly recommend you arrange to have it replaced with a newer type of plastic. Here are the three types of plastic pipes that modern plumbers most commonly used today:

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Sizing: Why It’s Important for a New AC

August 21st, 2018

air-conditioner-with-toolsHave you found yourself stuck in the hot dog days of summer with an old air conditioner that’s finally decided to pack it in—whether you want it to or not? The good news is that when you contact our expert HVAC team for a new central air conditioning installation, we’ll find the ideal new unit to match your needs and have it up and working in no time at all. We don’t want you to spend too much time in a hotbox of a house.

When you work with professionals like us for an AC system installation, one of the most crucial jobs we do comes before we even pick the new air conditioner: sizing it. No, sizing doesn’t mean deciding on how physically big the new central AC can be (although we definitely won’t try to install one that won’t fit!). Sizing is a specific job that HVAC technicians do to ensure an new air conditioner supplies the cooling power, also called a cooling load, that’s neither too weak nor too powerful for the house. It’s the “Goldilocks Principle” at work: not too small, not too big, but just right.

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Air Conditioner Not Working? Make These Checks First

July 30th, 2018

checkmark-greenSummer days aren’t much fun when the air conditioner that’s supposed to make your home pleasingly cool isn’t doing anything at all. When your AC won’t turn on, or it does turn on but doesn’t deliver cool air, one of your first instincts will be to call a professional HVAC contractor to repair it.

This is the right instinct: repairing an air conditioner isn’t something you can do on your own, and it shouldn’t be left to non-professionals. However, before diving for the phone, you can make some basic checks to see if there’s a simple reason behind the air conditioner problem. You may not need repairs at all—and if you do, we’re always here to help.

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Here Are the Most Common Plumbing Emergencies

July 16th, 2018

high-pressure-pipe-leakHaving an emergency plumber’s number handy is one of the best ways you can put your mind at ease about your home plumbing. You know you can reach out to a trusted, licensed professional when a disaster strikes your home’s plumbing that could lead to a loss of fresh water, backed up sewage, flooding, and other problems. You shouldn’t attempt to do any major plumbing repairs on your own, and it’s especially crucial you leave those emergency jobs to plumbers who can act fast and get the job done right.

We’ve handled many plumbing emergencies in our years in business, and we’ve put together a list of some of the more common ones that you might run into. We’re here to help you with 24-hour, 7-days a week service when these happen.

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A High-Efficiency Air Filter Might Spell Disaster

July 2nd, 2018

air-fliter-cuAre you interested in better air quality for your home? Chances are that you’d benefit from the professional installation of air cleaners of some type. There are many different types of air cleaning products on the market, ranging from tiny electronic air purifiers that don’t do much to extensive whole-house air filtration and purification systems. Because of the high number of types of pollutants that found in today’s homes, we strongly recommend working with our IAQ professionals to find the ideal air quality products and solutions.

And this brings us to the topic today, which is the simple mistake some homeowners make if they try to go it alone with air cleaners…

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Drain Cleaning Is Better and Faster with This Amazing Device

June 18th, 2018

tapwater-down-drainDrain cleaning is about more than unclogging drains. It is also a preventive method that keeps away future clogs. We encourage homeowners to arrange for professional drain cleaning once a year to help keep their drainage system working at its best and avoid having to make emergency service calls because of a stopped up bath or kitchen drain.

Plumbers use a number of specialized tools to clean drains, such as motorized drain augers (a.k.a. drain snakes) and powerful hydro-jetters that blast high-pressure water along the inside of the drainpipes to scour them clean.

There’s one device that modern technology has developed that makes drain cleaning faster and more effective than ever before: video pipe inspection equipment.

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