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What is a Drain Snake?

Marcin from ExpressRooter, the official contractor for Mike Holmes, is here to address some of the common questions that many homeowners ask. What is a Drain Snake? A drain snake is equipment that plumbers use to provide maintenance and to clear debris of any…

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Do You Know Where Your Water Shut-Off Valve is?

Many homeowners think that if something goes wrong with any of our home’s plumbing, we can simply call a plumber. While this might be true for many repairs, including emergencies, this is not the case with your water shut-off valve. You and your family members need to know where the water shut-off valve is and how to turn it off. Here’s why, and how, to turn it off.

The Damage Water Can Do

Over time, water in your home can cause considerable damage. The longer the water is running and collecting in your home, the worse the damage will be. You need to know where your shut-off valve is and stop the water from pouring into your home as quickly as you can.

Signs that you have leaking water include water pockets in the paint on the walls, or flaking and peeling paint. Additional signs can include mold, or unusual levels of moisture in your home. For a more serious issue, like a damaged pipe, you might actually see the water running. With water pooling on the floor, it will put both your flooring and walls at risk of excessive damage. 

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How to Fix a Leaking Toilet Tank

If your toilet tank is leaking, not only will your toilet not flush properly, you will also be wasting water. Luckily, fixing a leaking toilet tank can be done yourself, and you may not have to rely on a plumbing service specialist. What you will have to do is replace the rubber gaskets present around the tank bolts, as well as the spud washer. This washer can corrode due to hard water and high mineral content, resulting in annoying leaks.

If you have a leaking toilet tank, here is what you have to do to fix it:

Items Required to Fix the Leak

  • Screwdriver
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Small-sized wire brush
  • White vinegar
  • Sponge
  • Rags
  • New spud washer
  • New tank bolt gaskets
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How to Prevent Tree Roots in Your Sewer Pipes

Tree roots can make their way into your sewer lines through loose joints and cracks. This actually is a common problem in old homes that have clay, cast iron, or asphalt composite piping. Tree roots in sewer pipes can mean an expensive repair. Getting rid of the blockage will cost you thousands, and this blockage will cause several plumbing issues in your home.

Thankfully, there are ways to prevent this from occurring. Here are some pre-emptive measures that you can take to prevent tree roots from inhibiting sewage flow and causing broken pipes and blockages.

Locate the Sewer Line

Get in touch with the local public works department to find out where your sewage line is located. In fact, this is something you should do before you landscape your garden, as it will give you an idea about pipes, lines, and cables under the ground.

Once you know the location of the sewer pipes, you will be able to take measures to prevent roots from creating havoc.

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Your Common Plumbing Questions Answered

Like so many of modern life’s conveniences, we tend to take our plumbing entirely for granted… until it goes wrong.

If the toilet suddenly backs up, or a tap continues to leak, or a sink won’t drain, there are several relatively simple self-fixes you can try. In this easy-to-digest overview, we’ll look at those three common plumbing problems, give advice on how to deal with them, and refer you to other blog posts that deal with plumbing questions in greater detail.

How to Unblock A Toilet

Immediately stop flushing the toilet. Dumping more water into the bowl isn’t extremely likely to result in a miraculous clearance; rather, you’ll just make matters worse by flooding the floor with overflowing water. In fact, turn off the valve which serves the toilet, then wait for the trapped water to seep away.

Put on a pair of sturdy rubber gloves, reach in and try to remove any obvious blockages. If that doesn’t work, add a little dish soap to a half-bucket of  hot (not boiling) water, then pour the mixture into the toilet from a couple of feet above the top of the bowl. If the pressure and agitation caused by the falling water doesn’t work, the detergent may loosen the blockage.

Use a heavy-duty rubber plunger, or attempt to push out the obstruction with a plumbing snake (a flexible coil of wire on a spool). You can buy a manual version, or rent one that works on an electric drill.

This and other plumbing questions are more fully explored here

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4 Plumbing Issues to Watch Out For When Renovating an Old Home

An old home has its own charm and beauty that is hard to beat. Unfortunately, this charm of an old home often comes with plumbing concerns. Not only are older homes designed differently compared to present-day homes, they also carry the excess baggage of an aging plumbing system. So, if you are renovating an old home, you need to keep your eyes peeled for certain plumbing problems that are common in such homes.

Here is a list of the 5 main plumbing issues that you may come across during the renovation process. Remember, these issues require professional plumbing services. You should not attempt a DIY job.

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Hire a Plumber for Your Shower Drain Installation

Even if you are generally good with DIY projects and typically do all of your own repairs, shower drain installation is one task that is best left to a professional. Sure, you can get all the parts and do the job yourself, but there are some factors that need to be considered that only a professional would be able to handle.

Site surveying

The first important factor a professional will start with is surveying the site where the shower drain installation is to be done. Whether it’s for a new construction or renovation, the site of a linear drain is contingent on the location of the waste line. While it is necessary to move the water line, it depends heavily on the site’s conditions. This is best done by a professional.

Another factor a professional would know how to handle is locating the linear drains. A linear type of drain makes it possible for a larger format floor tile to be used. It also facilitates pitching of the floor in one direction. This allows the conventional center drain installation, where the floor has to slope in four directions to drain water properly. 

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What is a French Drain?

What is a French drain? Depending on your location, you may also hear this humble gravel- or rock-filled trench referred to as:

  • Agricultural drain
  • Blind drain
  • Drain tile
  • French ditch
  • Land drain
  • Perimeter drain
  • Rock drain
  • Rubble drain
  • Sub-soil drain
  • Sub-surface drain
  • Weeping tile

Each of those terms refers to the same style of drain. If you’re still left wondering “What is a French drain?”, All will be revealed below.

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Trust ExpressRooter for Toronto Drain Repair

Plumbing emergencies are precisely that: emergencies. The potential for disaster when an internal pipe freezes, for instance, especially on an upper floor, can’t be overstated. The typical water pressure in a Toronto household’s water main delivers no less than seven litres per minute, which can do some serious damage to your home or office. Drain repair can be equally urgent.

What to Do In an Emergency

Your first step must be to stop the flow of water, immediately. Turn off the shut-off valve to the particular fixture or appliance that’s sprung a leak, or to the whole property – at the main water valve – if there isn’t one handy.

If you, and every member of your family or staff, doesn’t know the location of these shut-off valves, learn where they are immediately after you finish reading this post.

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