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What is a Plumbing Emergency?

How long do Emergency Plumbers Take?

In a sense, a plumbing emergency can be defined as a few different types of plumbing dilemmas that either terribly inconvenience you or are causing massive damages to your household. Examples of this can be surprisingly small to quite expansive depending on what part of the country you live in. For residents in and around Vacaville, CA you may not see pipes freeze over, but you can be susceptible to plumbing emergencies like:

  • Water shut off valve damage or complete failure
  • Sewer backup
  • Sump pump failure
  • Leaking or burst pipe

Each of these examples and more problems that warrant emergency plumbing repairs can be started by multiple different reasons as well as possibly look different on each occasion. As it happens, however, homeowners need not worry when they know an emergency plumber is on their way. Generally, when plumbers are confronted with a plumbing emergency, they do not take very long to stop the problem and then patch it up. This process tends to take a few hours, occasionally it will take days if the issue is needing an extensive process. The immediate resolution to the growing damages however are the plumber’s top priority and should be stopped the first time around. One thing that plumbers can agree is the common issues that predict an emergency plumbing situation are low water pressure and the eventual backup in the sink, toilet, or another drain. When needing emergency plumbing, why not trust Advanced Plumbing Heating & Air and call __PHONE__ to arrange a fast and professional visit to get your plumbing problems taken care of. 

Is a clogged toilet a maintenance emergency?

While a clogged toilet may not seem like much of an issue, if it is your only toilet or if it is overflowing then yes it can be considered an emergency plumbing situation. Your plumbing system is at your disposal and if it is hindered to the point that you cannot use it or it is damaging your home then you should make the call to get it taken care of. A homeowner can take a few different methods to try and fix the solution to the problem. Some include: 

  • Using a plunger
  • Hot water
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar

While the fizz does show particles are being broken down, it should be noted that you should not do this if the water is constantly rising or if you do not necessarily know where the problem is. The baking soda and vinegar combo can add more pressure to your pipes. If the system already has an ample amount then it will only add to the problem. Hot water will break down effectively particles effectively but practice caution when doing so. If the plunger is ineffective, plunging your system more may cause some of the pipes to weaken if not burst.

What do Plumbers Fix?

Some not familiar with the plumbing industry may not have any notion of what a plumber specifically does. That can be understood, while plumbers do provide crucial maintenance to one of the dominant systems of the home, they also are not the most advertised. Plumbers and emergency plumbers specifically work on:

  • Piping 
  • Faucets
  • Toilets
  • Heaters
  • Washers
  • Backflow protection 
  • Water and sewer lines
  • Kitchens 
  • Bathrooms
  • Gas lines

Unless you’ve inspected your local plumber’s list of services, you may have not noticed that plumbers do quite a bit more than general maintenance. We are trained and certified to grant your home with a system that helps you cook, clean, and enjoy life. Plumbers work on gas lines, often helping in the full repair of one if needed and can help detect a problem in the greater system. It is a tireless job, serving homeowners and business owners with the services that make modern buildings function for people.

Can a Water Leak Fix Itself?

When you encounter a water leak in your home, the damages can be devastating if left unattended. In the circumstances that cause a leak to happen, there is almost never one that creates a situation where a leak patches itself up and thwarts further damages form occurring. On the occasion that you detect one, you should by all means call your local plumber to get it taken care of before any further problems can result. Leaks more often than not point to a larger problem somewhere in your system if not in the immediate point of leakage. A plumber, whether its for emergency plumbing or not, is more than capable of finding the source of the dilemma and fixing it accordingly. When it comes to something like a drain, sometimes the fix is easy, but sometimes it can require a professional. The latter tends to be when the problem is taking place in the main drain, which cannot be affected by the means a homeowner has. Why not then trust the certified and highly trained professionals at Advanced Plumbing Heating & Air. Call 707-273-6001 for your emergency plumbing appointment and we’ll get you taken care of.

Why is my AC running but not cooling?

hvac system outside while the sprinklers run

How do you know if your air conditioner is cooling?

By the calendar, we’re still in Spring, but by the thermostat, for many of us, it is feeling like summer already. If you haven’t already had to have a home air conditioner repair call, now is the time to have an air conditioner repair service. Having your system checked now before summer is a preventive maintenance for any homeowner. It could be the difference between having an air conditioner repair or replaced done.

Another scorching summer will be here any day, so make sure your air conditioner or conditioning is ready so that you don’t have to have an expensive home air conditioner repair bill, or worse, a new unit. The following is a checklist that will tell if your home and HVAC is ready to do its thing:

  • The air filters. You follow proper homeowner maintenance and have either changed or cleaned the air filter in the last 30 days.  
  • The thermostat is powered. As a responsible homeowner, you have recently changed the batteries in the thermostat, or you performed the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance test. You have the thermostat is in the “on” and “cool” position.
  • You can hear the blower fan. You can hear the blower fan whirring with no issues of binding up.
  • The inside temperature is cooler than outside. You turned the AC on for a day and came home to a cool house.
  • The air conditioning unit is quiet. All you can hear is the normal blower fan whirring sound from the inside and outside components.
  • There is adequate insulation. During your recent HVAC system maintenance check-up, either you or an experienced HVAC technician have checked the insulation in the attic and it is ready for another scorching summer that will let the air conditioner cool without overworking.
  • You can minimize excessive sunlight. You have blinds and curtains on every window so you can minimize the blistering sun every day.
  • All debris is cleared of the outside component. The outside component is free of debris, grass clippings, leaves, sticks, etc., including critter nests.

How do you troubleshoot an outside AC unit?

Good thing you checked it out and make sure the air conditioner is ready for summer, because the outside component is quiet, and the house isn’t cooling down. There are two things that professional HVAC technicians find during home air conditioner repair service calls:

  1. The outside component of the AC is humming, but the fan isn’t spinning.
  2. There is warm air blowing through the vents inside the house even though you have checked everything from the air filter to the thermostat.

Here are some typical reasons that home air conditioner repair technicians find to be the problem:

  • BAD CAPACITORS: Energy is stored in capacitors that power the fan inside that outside component of your HVAC system. A capacitor starts the fan and keeps it running, and some HVAC systems have dual capacitors that power the fans and the compressor. A capacitor is like a battery and over time, loses its ability to store energy. High temperatures, high voltage, and power surges can blow a capacitor out. When the capacitor is out, the fan won’t turn. A fan may not turn if there is debris wrapped around the fan, the fan motor bearings are dirty or jammed, or it damages fan motor. 
  • DEFICIENT POWER SUPPLY: If the fan isn’t getting adequate power supply, it will stop working. This is typically not an easy diagnosis to make and requires the experience and skills of a professional HVAC technician and home air conditioner repair call. 
  • THE CONTACTOR: The fan motor is controlled by the contractor and when it goes out, the fan will stop. This isn’t a DIY project and requires a professional home air conditioner repair technician. 
  • BURNT OUT FAN MOTOR: Fan motors will burn out simply from wear and tear, or from poor maintenance. With proper homeowner maintenance steps, you can avoid making those unexpected and expensive home air conditioner repair service calls.

What causes outside AC unit to stop working?

Even the best, most expensive, and best-maintained HVAC system will go out at some point. Some of the most common problems found during a home air conditioner repair service call are: 

The Wiring

There are numerous networks of wires connecting parts of your HVAC system.  Sometime there are above ground wires exposed and sometimes, the home air conditioner repair technician will find broken, damaged, or eroded wires behind the walls.

An Icy Build Up

When the air filter hasn’t been changed or cleaned, ice will build up about the evaporator coils, pipes, even outside the unit because the system must work twice as hard and the internal parts freeze up. When you see ice built up, you need to call for a home air conditioner repair because that ice will need to be removed from some delicate parts of the internal structure that can be damaged if you don’t know what you’re doing.

A Faulty Thermostat

Homes outfitted with an analog thermostat will find that this old style thermostat cannot keep up with today’s high efficiency HVAC models.  Replacing the unit with a digital thermostat that has a touch screen is less likely to give you any problems as the thermostat will communicate with the system. A homeowner can usually do this themselves or you can place a home air conditioner repair service call and have an experienced technician install a new thermostat.

The Refrigerant

Your HVAC system has refrigerant running through tubes in a closed circuit. Sometimes, a central air system will accumulate leak and the refrigerant drips out. This can often be repaired by a home air conditioner repair service call, but more than once, you probably need to replace the unit.

The Condenser, Evaporator Coils, and Filter

As the homeowner, you should be changing or cleaning the air filter monthly. What you can’t do is clean the condenser or evaporator coils. A professional to clean those during a home air conditioner repair service call.

A Faulty Compressor

The compressor pumps compressed the refrigerant through the coils and throughout the air conditioner system to cool the air. When the compressor goes out, the amperage rises to meet the thermostat demands. With a home air conditioner repair service call, the technician will replace the condenser and restore your home with cooled air.

A Faulty Motor

When a blower motors is running at half speed or has frozen up, it stresses the central air system. This required the motor to be replaced during a home air conditioner repair service call.

How do I reset my air conditioning unit?

If you have tried to turn on your air conditioner already but didn’t feel cool air, it could be the thermostat that needs to be reset. A thermostat should be reliable, but like anything, they get old and wear out. The following steps will help you reset your thermostat.

  • Turn the AC off at the Thermostat by turning it to the “off” position.
  • Find the Breaker Box and flip the breaker marked “AC” to the off position.
  • Wait 30 Seconds to 1 minute then flip it back to the on position.
  • Next, turn the thermostat back to “on” and make sure it is in the AC mode.

This should get your AC going again with cool air. If it didn’t then you must make a home air conditioner repair service appointment with a certified technician.

HVAC systems exterior, not functioning

How do I fix my AC?

Most air conditioning problems will need a professional home air conditioner repair service, there are some things you can do yourself using the following guidelines:

  1. The Air Conditioner Doesn’t Turn On: If the air conditioner doesn’t turn on, check the outside component is running, the unit is plugged in, and the thermostat is set on AC and ON.
  2. The Air Conditioner Is Not Cooling: If the air conditioner is on, and the thermostat is set correctly but it still isn’t cooling, the condenser could be blocked or dirty. Check that the outside component doesn’t have any debris, grass, or weeds around it that could block the air circulation. Check the filter to see if it needs cleaning or replacing.
  3. The Air Conditioner Isn’t Cooling Adequately: If the air conditioner is on and set correctly, but still isn’t cooling to the comfort you desire, the evaporator coil could be frozen, or your system may be too small. If there is ice inside the exterior component, turn the system off and schedule a home air conditioner repair service. If you keep trying to run it while frozen, you could do more damage and the air conditioner repair cost will be more than you want to pay. 

This time of year, knowing that summer is about to arrive, make sure your air conditioning unit is running and ready to go. Every day you wait, the professional air conditioning technicians are getting booked further out.  Get started on your home air conditioner repair needs when you call the experts from Advanced Plumbing Heating & Air at 707-273-6001!

How Do You Hook a Generator to Your House?

Two yellow portable generators sitting on the grass.

Get the Right Generator for You

There are many reasons why you may need a power generator at your house. Perhaps your power goes out from time to time unexpectedly, or you have possessions that need a reliable source of power at all times. Regardless of your reasons, it is important to know how to hook a generator up at your house, and other information pertaining to the use of a home generator. Read this article for details on owning and using this type of machine.

Basics Everyone Should Know About Home Generators

Here are home generator basics that everyone should be aware of.

  • You need to know what you’ll want to power. You need to know what appliances you’ll want to power with your generator to know what size you will need for your home. For example, if you want to keep your fridge running, but also want to be able to use your air conditioner, you’ll need to know how many watts these things use normally. This can help you make a better decision on the model you want.
  • There are different types of generators. There are numerous types of generators, including ones that are placed beside your home, portable models, inverter generators, and power stations. Many people get confused when it comes to home generator vs inverter. Inverters are more expensive than regular portable units are and give off fewer emissions. This makes them safer overall.
  • Pay attention to the features available. You need to pay attention to the features that different models offer. These can end up helping you over time. For example, some give off less carbon monoxide or have automatic features that can come in handy. Others may be able to use different types of fuels as well. Take the time to read everything you can before you make a decision on an investment like this.
  • Research transfer switches.  A transfer switch is necessary, regardless of what type of generator you want to use. You should have it installed by a professional to make sure that it works when you need it to. Talk to your regular contractor about what this process involves.

What size generator is needed to power a house?

A generator that is around 7500 watts should be able to power a few appliances at once, where you can keep the most important things you will need working during a power outage. There are units that are more powerful available as well. If you don’t intend to use many products with your generator, you can choose one that produces less power, closer to 5000 watts.

Can you plug a generator into a house outlet?

You should not plug a Power generator into a house outlet. They should not be built into your circuit breaker system either. For the best outcome, they should be installed by a professional through what is known as a two-way transfer switch.

Do I need a transfer switch for my generator?

If you want a large generator hooked up to your house, it is likely you will need a transfer switch. When it comes to a home generator and transfer switch, they go hand in hand. You will need one to get your generator to bring power into your house. They can be costly though, but they also come with other advantages, which may cancel out their purchase price.

How many feet should a generator be from the house?

Your generator should be at least 15 feet away from your house if it is an emergency or portable generator. If you have a generator hooked up to your house, you can talk to the professional that installed it to make sure that it is the proper distance from the home.

Can you run a generator overnight?

You will need to understand the specifications of your machine to know how long it is safe to run a generator at one time. Many models are only able to run for a certain number of hours before they should be shut down, often 6-8 hours. After that time, they need to turned off, so they can rest. If they run too long, it can wear out their parts quicker.

A home Power generator on the side of a house.

Call Us With Generator Questions

Now that you know all the major aspects of owning a power generator, you have a better chance of making an informed decision about the one you want for your home. When it comes to home generator efficiency, there are so many models that you can count on, so it may take time to find one that works best for your needs. This is why it is so important to enlist an expert to talk to you about this type of appliance and when it comes to installing it. We can help with this at Advanced Plumbing Heating & Air. We work with generators for home use and can help provide a power generator in Vacaville, CA. Call us at 707-273-6001 for a consultation, and so you can hear our advice.