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Galvanized pipes – An unhealthy foe

Years ago, before the 50s, lead was one of the most popular metals used in home plumbing and drainage systems. When lead was banned from use, it was replaced with galvanized pipes. These still exist in older homes today.


Here’s why you want to replace these pipes.

  • Over time, the inside of the pipe starts to corrode, creating rust that leaches into your drinking water.
  • Rusted pipes give your water a nasty smell and taste, which is not good for your family.
  • Rusty water in your laundry will discolour your clothes.
  • Over time the corroding pipes and rust build-up will restrict water flow to your home resulting in low water pressure.

If you still have galvanized pipes in your home, consider updating them to copper or PEX piping and get rid of this nasty foe! 

Plumbing inspections for older homes pay off

Older homes c​ome with charm and character. They connect you with the past and often have interesting nooks and features like glass doorknobs, dumbwaiters, and stained glass. Older homes also come with facets, fixtures, and pipes to match the times. That’s why, it’s always a good idea to have a home plumbing inspection to indicate potential unforeseen problems.

So, what about that plumbing?

Inside and outside plumbing, including the fixtures, could be problematic, especially if they’re the original installations from back in the day. You might find, for example:

  • Galvanized steel pipes
  • Original toilets, which use too much water
  • Steel (ceramic coated) tubs and hand basins

These are the things you can see. Potential problems extend to original drains, pipes and sewers that are not visible! For example:

  • Lead pipes – the original plumbing pipe and the trades namesake! (See your table of elements.) Unfortunately, lead is toxic and can lead to a host of health problems.
  • Galvanized pipes, made of iron and coated with a layer of zinc. Over time, these pipes corrode, creating rusty water and clog up.

What about your sewer lines? An older home generally means more mature trees in the yard leading to sewer lines being damaged by tree roots. Especially if you have original clay pipes.

A plumbing inspection will identify problems before they happen. Not only can a plumber replace your worn fixtures, but they’re also equipped to keep the water flowing smoothly by removing debris and replacing old and corroded pipes before they create a problem.

Preventative maintenance goes a long way!  

Plumbing tips for homeowners

You don’t always need a plumber. These​ simple steps can save you the time and cost of hiring a plumber.

1.Find your main water shutoff valve.
Your main water shutoff valve turns off all the water to your home. This is important if you’re changing faucets, repairing a toilet, or if you ever have a major leak, like a busted pipe.

2.Keep your drains flowing – use a sink tool to pull out accumulated hair.
Hair and soap scum are two ways drains can get clogged. Regular use of a sink unclogging tool to pull out accumulated hair will help keep your drains flowing. You should be able to find these tools at your local hardware store.

3.Clear your drains with baking soda, vinegar, and warm water.
Over time, your drains will get caked with debris that’s passed through your pipes. Before you call a plumber, try adding a little baking soda and vinegar. The baking soda will stick to the debris and the vinegar will act as a cleaning agent. After a few minutes, flush the drain by running warm water.

4.Don’t use liquid cleaners. These will damage your pipes.
Enough said. Although drain cleaners are promoted as helpful to clear drain clogs, they contain chemicals that are not only harmful to you but will damage your pipes over time.

5.Keep a plunger on hand.
Another handy tool to keep around is a plunger. When you seal a plunger around the toilet drain and push, the pressure pushes down on the water and helps to break up any blockage.

6.Don’t put grease or oils down the sink.
Cooking oils and fats have no place in your sink drains or your toilet! The film that will accumulate on the sides of your pipes will act as a magnet for other bits of food, soap, etc. and soon create a clog. It’s also not good for the water supply. Pour your grease and oils into a cup or wipe then with a paper towel and dispose of them in the garbage.

7.Install a strainer in the shower and tub to catch hair and soaps.
One of the biggest creators of clogs is the hair and soap that goes down the shower drain. A handy drain strainer helps keep your drains clear.

8.Check your hose connections are tight.
If you’re finding drips around your garden hose, dishwashers or washing machines, you may need to tighten or replace your connections. A leaking hose can cause a lot of damage if not repaired quickly.

9.Keep your faucets and showerheads clear of mineral buildup.

One way to clean your faucets and showerheads is to soak them now and again in vinegar and give them a scrub. This will help remove mineral deposits that clog up the spouts!

And most of all,

10.Keep your plumber’s number on hand! Dundee Services 519-619-0455

Reap the benefi​ts of a OneFlow®+ Salt-Free Scale Prevention and Water Filtration

Protect your pipes, extend the life of appliances and enjoy better tasking water with a OneFlow®+ water filtration system. It’s an economical and environmentally friendly water treatment technology for your home. And, the best part? The system requires very little maintenance, no backwashing, no salt and no electricity!

Here’s how it works

The OneFlow®+ system uses two cartridges:

  • A radial flow 20 micron carbon block cartridge, which reduces sediment, chlorine taste and odor
  • An integrated OneFlow®+ scale prevention cartridge

The OneFlow®+ system uses something called template assisted crystallization (TAC) to attract dissolved hardness minerals and convert them into harmless, inactive microscopic crystal particles.

These crystals stay suspended in the water and have a greatly reduced ability to react and attach to surfaces like dissolved hardness does. They eventually find their way to a drain.

The OneFlow®+ system is not a water softener. It does not add chemicals to the water. It is a scale prevention device with proven third party laboratory test data and years of successful residential

installations. The OneFlow®+ system is the intelligent scale solution and is a great salt-free alternative to water softening devices.

Is it time to update your toilet?

When it c​omes to renovating your bathroom, one of many decisions to make is which toilet to choose. Will it be the elongated bowl or the round one? It all b​oils down to a matter of taste, functionality and design. Here are some thoughts on each to help you decide.

Elongated bowls are considered more 'hygienic' because of their larger surface area and opening. They’re also easier to use for people ​with limited mobility. And, one-piece models are also easier to clean.

Although the elongated bowls, especially the one-piece design, may be a sleeker, more space-efficient alternative, if your bathroom space is limited, an elongated bowl may fall short. Also, if you have small children, the extra large opening and surface space may be a challenge in the early years.

Round bowls are great space savers and will provide more room to move around in those smaller bathrooms. They’re also easier for small children to maneuver. A downside to the round bowl is its smaller surface area making it an easier target for accidental messes and therefore less hygienic.

So, which will it be – the elongated bowl or the round one?​

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