How To Avoid Costly And Damaging Bursting Pipes

THE DANGER ZONE: WHEN AND WHY PIPES FREEZE

Especially in places that typically see cold winter weather, like New Jersey, well-constructed modern homes are built to protect pipes against freezing. In older homes, however, or during unusually cold temperatures, pipes that are most at risk of freezing are

  • Exposed pipes in unheated areas of the home,
  • Pipes located in exterior walls, and
  • Any plumbing on the exterior of the home.

Exposed pipes in the basement are usually warm enough that they aren’t in danger of freezing. But exposed plumbing in areas such as crawl spaces, attics, and garages may be at risk. Tests of residential water systems showed that for uninsulated pipes installed in an unheated attic, freezing began when the outside temperature fell to 20° F or below. Surprisingly, both hot and cold pipes can be at risk. As water freezes, it expands and can increase the pressure in your plumbing system; too much pressure can cause pipes to burst or crack.

Many homeowners don’t take appropriate precautions to protect plumbing that is connected to the outside of the home, such as outdoor kitchen plumbing, exterior spigots, or even a garden hose. Water expanding in a frozen garden hose can increase pressure throughout your home’s plumbing enough to burst an interior pipe.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or Plumbing needs call toll-free at 888-315-5564

Is An Annual Furnace Inspection Really Essential?

Uphold Your System’s Warranty

Many warranties provided on heating systems have a clause that void the warranty if furnace inspections or maintenance are not completed at regular intervals. These warranties may also be voided if someone other than a professional has worked on the system.

Keep Your System Running Efficiently

A furnace inspection will ensure that your furnace is running efficiently; this can save you a lot of money on energy costs over the cold months.

Minimize Breakdowns

Having your furnace inspected before winter sets in can save you from experiencing an emergency, such as your furnace breaking down on the coldest night of the year.

Keep Your System Operating Safely

By having a professional inspect your furnace, you can ensure that your furnace is safe to use. Furnaces that have leaks or obstructions can cause fires and potentially devastating damage to your home.

Evenly & Comfortably Heat Your Home

Regular furnace inspections and tune-ups can make sure that your home is heated evenly, as dirty filters and obstructions can leave one room boiling hot and another freezing cold.

Extend the Life of Your Furnace

By having your furnace inspected each year, you may be able to extend the life of your furnace. Many furnaces will last up to 20 years, however, if your furnace is not taken care of, the lifespan can be much shorter.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ toll-free at 888-315-5564

How To Make Sure Your Plumbing Is Party Proof

While holiday activities can put a strain on your home’s plumbing, there are ways to ease this strain. Here are six quick tips to prevent a plumbing catastrophe during the holidays:

  1. Clogged Sinks – Avoid draining oils and greases down your kitchen sink. Fatty substances can solidify in your pipes and clog your kitchen’s plumbing. Instead of pouring cooking oil and grease down the drain, let it cool, wipe it up with a paper towel and dispose of it in the trash. Using strainers in your sink drains will also help prevent clogs by catching larger items that might otherwise slip down the drain and cause issues. Additionally, clean your plumbing fixtures with vinegar to remove any build up. This will help ensure a free flow of water. As an added bonus, your faucets will be sparkling for your guests.
  2. Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free at 888-315-5564

Did You Know Toilets Have Their Own Holiday?

WORLD TOILET DAY HISTORY

World Toilet Day aims to raise awareness of sanitation and hygiene issues around the world. Poor sanitation and hygiene refer to lack of access to clean drinking water toilets and showers. Poor sanitation drastically increases the risk of disease and malnutrition, especially for women and children. Today, 2.6 billion people, about one-third of the population on the planet, do not have access to proper sanitation, a problem that kills nearly 1 million young children every year.

World Toilet Day was designated by the United Nations in July 2013. It is celebrated annually on November 19 as people all over the world take action and support the basic human right of access to clean water and sanitation.

If you are experiencing any trouble or concerns with your toilet, call the experts at Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ. We are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. Call toll-free at 888-315-5564

How Often Does My Furnace Need To Be Serviced?

Professional maintenance is a lot more than just a look-over that can be easily overlooked. Proper care ensures your system gains a lot of crucial benefits that aim to keep your heating costs (and stress level) much lower when the cold kicks in.

The benefits of maintenance include:

  • Lower heating costs. A well-maintained system can perform its function faster, better, and at less effort on the machine’s part. This means you’ll get all of the high-quality comforts you need without your system overworking and using too much energy, which directly impacts your monthly energy costs.
  • Higher quality comfort. That efficiency also spells out better comfort. Whether you use oil heating, gas, or an electric furnace, you’ll get better heating that never leaves cold spots or cool rooms.
  • Less risk of breakdowns. One of the most important parts of a professional maintenance service is ensuring your system is working optimally, and all components are in great working condition. The vast majority of seasonal breakdowns can be directly traced to poor component health or air flow problems; both issues are addressed with an inspection!
  • Longer service from your furnace. Depending on your type of furnace, you can generally expect around a decade or slightly more of service from your furnace. But that amount of time takes into account getting inspections and maintenance, without which you can cut that decade down to even just a few years!
  • If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing concerns call Green Apple toll-free at 888-315-5564

Get Your Plumbing One Step Ahead Of The Weather

  • Run a trickle of water:  Run a thin trickle of water from the faucet furthest from the water line coming to your house. Usually, this is in a room at the back of the house.  Allowing the water to circulate through your home’s plumbing helps to keep it from freezing.  Some consider this a waste of water, but the cost of the water used is extremely slight compared to repairing broken pipes and the resulting water damage. Also, the water can be captured in a bucket and used for other purposes around the home, like watering plants and washing dishes.
  • Disconnect and drain outdoor hoses: Detach all hoses from faucets and allow them to drain.  This action guard against the water in the hose or pipe from freezing and bursting the faucet or pipe to which it is connected.
  • Eliminate the amount of cold air coming into the home around water pipes.
  • If your home has a crawl space, cover the outside vents to prevent winter winds from freezing the pipes.
  • Insulate pipes or faucets in unheated areas: Pipes located in unheated areas of your house, such as a garage or crawl space under the house or in the attic, are subject to freezing.  If you have time to do this before freezing temperatures arrive, wrap these pipes with insulation materials made especially for this purpose.  These materials can be found in most hardware stores or home improvement centers.
  • If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free at 888-315-5564

Here’s How Not To Let Heat Sneak From Your Home

Insulate the attic. Is there insulation in your attic? If so, how much? The existence and amount of insulation that is there is crucial to your home’s ability to hold in the rising warm air. If checking your attic insulation status is not something that you can easily do, contact a local contractor or insulation installer for an in-home evaluation.

Insulate your walls. Some older homes have very little insulation in their walls. The minimum that usually suggested for exterior walls is 6” thick. But, some have only four inches. Removing your walls to add more fiberglass insulation is all but impossible and can be a very involved home repair. Blown-in insulation is an easier and more efficient option. The amount of insulation in your walls can be increased quickly and easily by using it. If you think that some of your home’s heat loss could be attributed to the lack of insulation in your walls, then consider adding some blown-in insulation.

Replacement windows. Ill-fitting, warped, old windows can certainly be a contributing factor to your heat loss. Old wood windows with single pane glass are a far cry from the double pane insulated glass windows of today. Vinyl replacement windows are custom made to fit and are composed of the highest quality vinyl. These windows will add beauty while making your home more energy efficient.

Replace your doors. Entrance doors can be the focus of the exterior of your home. They can easily add character, color, and style to set your house apart. Unfortunately, if these doors are old, they very well could be allowing cold air into your home and hot air out. Replacing your doors with a new replacement fiberglass or steel door can stop this unwanted air exchange.

If you have any HVAC or plumbing questions call Green Apple toll-free at 888-315-5564

Things You Never Knew About About Your Plumbing

1. STORE YOUR GARDEN HOSES BEFORE TEMPERATURES DROP

As temperatures drop, you’ll want to make sure your hoses make it through the colder weather. Start by disconnecting each hose and draining it, ensuring any leftover water has been removed. If any water is left inside the hose when it gets really cold, it will freeze and can potentially break it.

2. COVER YOUR OUTDOOR FAUCETS WITH STYROFOAM

To protect your outdoor faucets from freezing temperatures, invest in a very affordable foam faucet cover. It looks like half an igloo and basically acts as an insulation to keep the outside cold out. Save your faucets from freezing with this very simple and quick solution.

3. IF YOU’RE AWAY FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD, SHUT OFF VALVES

If you’re not home for an extended period of time, it’s a good idea to shut off water valves as temperatures begin to drop. Some water meters are located inside, while some are located outside. Look for a round, wheel-type handle and turn it all the way to the right, clockwise. To check whether it’s shut off, test each faucet by turning it on to its highest level. The water should eventually drain and no longer flow.

4. CLEAR OUT YOUR HOME’S GUTTERS

If you have a ladder handy, carefully use it to inspect the gutters around the exterior of your home. Clear out any leaves or debris that could block water from flowing and draining.

5. CHECK YOUR WATER HEATER SETTINGS

During the colder months, your water heater has to work harder to deliver warm water when you need it. As temperatures drop, make sure your water heater is set to 120 degrees to ensure it’s prepared to perform at its best.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your plumbing or HVAC needs call Green Apple toll-free at 888-315-5564

Here’s How To Not Let Your Furnace Burn Out

REDUCE REPAIRS

Having a technician check your furnace significantly reduces the number of furnace repairs that you could have possibly done. Some heating problems can easily be averted through checkups. This is because the checkups include cleaning the furnace as well as fixing any small problems before they turn into major problems. Remember, your furnace works overtime during fall and winter due to the enormous demand of warming the home and this eventually results in system failure if a checkup is not done on time.

SAVES TIME

Getting your furnace checked before winter is not only convenient but it will also save you on time and inconvenience. A furnace checkup will definitely save you from sitting in the cold as you wait for the technician to come. Besides, when done at the right time the charges are bound to be more affordable.

Green Apple are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free at 888-315-5564

Are Any Of These HVAC Sounds Causing You Concern?

WARNING SIGNS YOUR FURNACE NEEDS REPAIR

Noises are usually an indication that your furnace needs routine maintenance or repair. However, some noises can indicate an issue with your furnace which could possibly put you and your family at risk. Here is a list of the five most common furnace noises and what your furnace is trying to tell you.

  1. Booming – It’s not uncommon for homeowners to hear a boom when the furnace engages.  In some furnaces, especially older models, a boom could indicate the build-up of gas from a delay in the ignition.  Call a Green Apple service technician immediately, especially if there is an odor of natural gas around the furnace.
  2. Clicking – A clicking noise coming from your furnace is typically an indication of a faulty flame sensor, or possibly a problem between the ignition and the gas.  This will also require immediate attention.
  3. Squealing – Not unlike a car, squealing coming from your furnace could indicate a faulty belt, or possibly, a failing fan motor.  Both fixes are usually pretty routine but do require a Green Apple service technician.
  4. Rattling – A rattling sound that doesn’t subside could be indicative of worn or broken components in the motor or fan. If the rattling worsens, you could be hearing the sound of a complete system failure.
  5. Chirping – Chirping noises are common in a furnace that hasn’t been used in a while.  If you hear chirping, and it’s the beginning of the furnace season, wait a bit.  If the chirping doesn’t go away, you may need your fan belts replaced or some similar routine maintenance.
  6. Call Green Apple toll-free at 888-315-5564