Why isn’t my furnace turning on?

Did you decide to take the chill off your North Shore home a few nights ago? If your furnace didn’t start for you, it is always better to know that before cold weather sets in. Here’s a few things to check before giving your local HVAC professional a call.

Thermostat

Yes, we know the thermostat is a pretty obvious thing to check, but never overlook even the simplest solution to what could be a major headache. As thermostats become more advanced in what they can do, they also become more of a priority to keep in good working condition. Make sure they have the power they need to function properly.

Circuit Breaker

Your heating doesn’t have to be powered solely by electricity to be at the whim of your circuit breaker box. Even gas and propane furnaces need electricity in order to operate. Checking the circuit breaker is another one of those simple solutions that should be checked.

Pilot Light

Older furnaces, and even some of the newer models, rely on a pilot light that could go out. If that happens, the safety feature on the furnace would keep it from turning on. If you don’t know if your furnace has a pilot light that can be checked, reach for your manual and take a quick look.

Gas

If you have a gas or propane furnace, check other appliances that use that same energy source. If they are working, then you know your service has not been interrupted. If you smell gas while checking on the status of your furnace, go outside and call for emergency service. All gas leaks should be taken seriously!

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Marblehead and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their heating repairs and installations. If you’d like to discuss your comfort system options, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

 

How Long Does a Water Heater Last?

Water Heaters! We put them in a corner, decorate around them, hide them in the darkest sections of our homes. We truly do not give them the respect they deserve for providing hot water for our use at the drop of a hat. They are the forgotten appliance in our homes. … at least until they stop working correctly.

How long should it last?
The common tank-style water heater can be expected to last from 8 to 12 years. A more efficient tankless water heater can often times last up to 20 years.

How Can I find out how old it is?
Find the serial number of your water heater, it will begin with a letter and have a 2 digit number. The letter will tell you the month, the 2 digit number the year. A = January, B = February, C = March, D = April, and continues on. B16 would translate to February 2016, C09 would mean March 2009.

When should a water heater be replaced
As your water heater nears the last 2 years of its expected life, it’s a good time to start planning when and with what type you are going to replace it. But if you notice any symptoms before that, you should certainly give us a call. An aging water heater can do more than just stop producing water, it can send leaking water into your house when you least expect it.

Failing Water heater symptoms
Odd Noises – Calcium can build up, harden and form a crust in your water heater. If you have hard water, this can be an especially common issue. That crust will cause your water heater to produce odd banging noises and send ot the alarm that it is time to be replaced.
Rusty Water – Do your own detective work before you call the plumber. Is only the hot water rusty, or is it affecting the cold water as well?
Performance – If you begin to notice that the water isn’t as hot or last as long as it once did, it may be trying to tell you that its age is catching up with it.
Leaking – If water leaks develop around the bottom, check to see if there is a loose connection or if its seems to be leaking from around the bottom. Don’t ignore it! If you can’t solve the leaking, give us a call!

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Lynn and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their water heater repair and installations. If you’d like to find out about the many choices available, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

It is a Good Idea to Switch from Oil to Natural Gas?

Hands holding a flame gas on black

Reduced Heating Costs

There are 2 main ways that switching from oil to natural gas should save you money. Natural gas is generally a cheaper fuel source. Natural gas is a more efficient energy source.

Flexibility

Natural gas users enjoy the flexibility that oil users cannot offer. Have you thought about cooking on a gas stove or installing a gas fireplace? Perhaps you’d like to use natural gas to heat your swimming pool. Natural gas will give you many options to use in your home that fuel oil does not.

Go Green

Natural gas burns cleaner than oil, reducing carbon dioxide by up to 40% and sulfur dioxide by 99.9%.
Is it Time?

If you are considering updating your heating system, now is the time to decide. Switching from oil to natural gas does require an investment. But future savings and comfort should return that investment over time and then begin to save you money as a bonus. We can assess your unique situation and energy usage to show you if switching from oil to gas will be worth the expense.

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Swampscott and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their heating system repairs and installations. If you’d like to find out about the many choices available, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

 

 

Ready to Switch to a Low Flow Toilet?

The 1990s were not a good time for the toilet industry. When the new law went into effect that limited the amount of water a toilet could use (down to 1.6 gallons), consumers were in for a bad surprise.

7 Gallons per Flush? Oh my!

Toilets had typically used up to 7 gallons of water per flush. While that might have given a bathroom user a sense of security, it wasted an unimaginable amount of our precious water resource each time we pushed down the handle in Lynn, MA.

It was imperative that toilet manufacturers came up with a design that would not only adhere to the EPA water conservation guidelines, but would also “do the job”.

Gravity

What still makes our toilet work the best? Good old-fashioned gravity remains the defining power to make our toilet do its job completely. The difference is that now manufacturers have taken the time to combine gravity with design to produce the most power per flush.

Pressure

Another type of toilet is also available. Pressure-assisted toilets use pressurized air to couple with the maximum 1.6 gallons of water to produce more flushing power. This type of toilet produces a bit more noise, but the extra power can be a benefit.

Dual Flush

I’m sure you’ve heard about them. Australia has always needed to be water conscious. They developed the dual flush toilet. The light flush is only .8 gallons of water, while the full force flush uses all 1.6 gallons of water.

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Lynn, MA and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their plumbing repairs and installations. If you’d like to find out about the many choices available, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

Tips to Save Water This Summer

SAhhh, water! We rely on water for so many facets of our daily life in Lynn, MA. And while the summer is when we seem to truly appreciate it the most, it is also the time of year that can be extra wasteful.

Here’s a few tips to remind us that saving water should be an every day routine in our lives.

Water the Yard in the Cooler Part of the Day
The hot afternoon sun is no time to water your lawn. The water will begin to evaporate before it gets a chance to soak into the ground. Try the morning or evening when outdoor temperatures are lower.

Toilet Leak Test
The toilet is one of the most common places that will find water leaks. Luckily, it is also one of the easiest to check for. Click here for a Simple Toilet Leak Test that you can do yourself.

Cover the Pool
It only takes a few minutes to cover and uncover the pool. That extra time will help keep water from needlessly evaporating.

You Deserve a Dishwasher
You not only deserve the extra help doing the dishes, it will also save water and energy. Energy star rated models can use as little as 3 gallons of water per load. Washing dishes by hand can use up to 27 gallons.

Car Wash
While washing a car in the driveway to some is a family tradition, an automatic car wash can often use only 40 gallons of water.

Rain Barrel for Your Gutter
Putting a rain barrel under gutter is an excellent way to help the environment. You can then use that water to water plants around the yard.

Shower or Bath?
The relaxing nature of bath is something that cannot be duplicated. But did you realize that the average tub will take between 30-50 gallons of water to fill with hot water. The average shower is only 20 gallons. Today’s latest achievements in shower heads can bring that down to even less … which saves you both water and energy

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Lynn and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their plumbing repairs and installations. If you’d like to discuss new fixtures for your home, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

Signs To Replace Your Toilet

Over our lifetime, each of us will probably spend 1 year to 3 years sitting on the toilet. That’s right … not a chair or couch, but a toilet. All of us would like to think that none of that time will include plunging it … or cleaning it more than necessary from wornout porcelain, or cracks that form slow leaks on our floor.

Here are several signs that it could be time to replace your toilet in Lynn, MA and the North Shore area.

Clogs
I cannot think of a worse clog in the house to deal with, then one in the toilet. When we flush we don’t like to think about what happens, just that it disappears. If your toilet is starting to have clogs more often, it might be time to consult a plumber and see if your outdated toilet is part of the problem.

Constant Repair
Most of us know a few tricks or two to stop the water running on our toilet. But at some point you should really consider if it’s time to replace instead of repair. Waldman Plumbing can help you decide if it’s time to update.

Cracked Porcelain
Tiny cracks can slowly develop in the porcelain. They start out being barely noticeable, but can increase to cracks that can leak water onto the floor. Don’t let those cracks cause water damage in your bathroom, or worse even, break entirely!

Cleaning Scratched Porcelain
Porcelain is not immune to becoming worn and scratched over time. That wear and tear not only shows, but makes it more difficult and time consuming to get it cleaned. Who wants to spend any more time cleaning their toilet than necessary?

Go Green
Did you know that many older toilets can use from 3-5 gallons of water per flush? Upgrading your toilet can lower that to less than 2 gallons every time you push on that handle. That means saving money on your next water bill and helping to save the environment at the same time!

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Lynn, MA and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their toilet service and installation. If you’d like to find out about the many choices available, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

What You Need to Know About High Efficiency Water Heaters

If you are thinking about an upgrade to a high efficiency water heater, think about this. 20% of our home’s utility bill costs come from our hot water heater. We take hot water in our homes for granted, but it does come with a price tag.

Save Money on Hot Water

High efficiency appliances typically come at a higher price, and hot water heaters are no exception. But over time, the extra cost will be returned in what you save on your energy bill.

Go Green

Every bit of energy that we can keep from being wasted is good for our environment. A longer life in our homes also means less waste in our landfills. They are built to be repaired, not simply replaced. With up to 15 year warranties, high efficiency water heaters are built to last.

Maintenance

Maintenance is recommended for all hot water heaters. But a traditional hot water heater is always on duty, and simply has to work harder to provide the same service.

The decision to make the change from a traditional to high efficiency water heater should always be an informed one. Waldman Plumbing can discuss your options with you and suggest a system that we think will fulfill you and your family’s hot water needs.

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Marblehead and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their plumbing repairs and installations. If you’d like to discuss your hot water heater options, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

How to Choose a Garbage Disposal

There are certain things in life that once you start depending on them, you can’t live without. A garbage disposal is one of those things. Convenience and affordability make them a necessity in most homes. If your current garbage disposal is not working correctly click here for a few tips. If that doesn’t work, take a few moments to compare the features of most garbage disposals, and then give us a call!

How Much Power?
A garbage disposal starts at 1/3 hp, but models are available to a whopping 1 hp. That’s a lot of power. We suggest a minimum of ½ hp for the average kitchen. Give us a call to go over what horsepower is right for your kitchen and cooking style.

Septic Issues
Homes with septic systems should take special care In choosing a garbage disposal. You should consult your friendly neighborhood plumber to go over the pros and cons of a garbage disposal, and what precautions you should take in Reading, MA.

Noise Level
“Quiet” and “Garbage Disposal” are words that are seldom used together. The crunching noise of a garbage disposal traditionally is the sign that it is doing its job. If you are hoping for a quieter unit, then your best bet is to invest in a larger, heavier model that will contain more of the noise. Just take special attention that it will still fit under the sink. We can help you with that.

Switches
There are 2 ways available that will turn those grinding gears on and off of your garbage disposal. A continuous-feed is the most common. You run the water, flip the switch and grind away your food waste. A batch-feed automatically turns on when you place a specific stopper in the drain. It is easier to install and safer because the garbage disposal won’t work unless the stopper is in the correct place.

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Reading and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their garbage disposal installations. If you’d like to find out about the many choices available, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

How to Save Water This Summer

Summer is only a month away, and many of us are already looking forward to having some water fun that we missed desperately throughout the winter. But first, let’s spend a little time saving water in our homes, and a little cash besides.

Save Water at Home

1. Check for leaks. Leaks are not always as obvious as finding a puddle of water in the middle of your floor. Sometimes you need to go looking for them. They can hide. That can mean wasted water and damage to our homes. Click here for a few tips on how to check for water leaks in your home.

2. Brushing your pearly whites. For every minute you let the faucet run, that could mean 2.5 gallons of water needlessly going down the drain. Turn off the water and take your time performing your daily routine of brushing your teeth.

3. Shower time. Americans love their showers. It can both wake you up to prepare you for the day and then wash away the remnants of that long day at work. Did you know that outdated showerheads can use as much as 5 gallons of water per minute? Consider updating to a more water efficient one and saving on both your water bills and energy bills.

4. Car wash. Washing your car on a bright sunny day to some is a tradition that has been handed down through generations. Take care to turn off the hose when you are soaping down, or better yet, consider using a car wash that recycles the water instead.

What uses the most water in our homes?

If you guessed toilets … you are absolutely correct! The average American household can use up to 400 gallons of water per day. According to the EPA, our toilet accounts for 24% of that … more than any other item in our homes. What’s the solution? We suggest upgrading to a more efficient toilet!

A WaterSense toilet can save you cash each month, and as a bonus you’ll be doing your part to help save the environment. And while you are considering updating your toilet, think about your showerhead. Showers account for the 2nd most water usage in the home.

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Swampscott and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their plumbing repairs and installations. If you’d like to find out about the many choices available, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.

Identifying Sewer Line Problems

What is sewage? According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary: “waste material (such as human urine and feces) that is carried away from homes and other buildings in a system of pipes.”

Yuck, we all want sewage to be as far away from our home and family as possible. Even thinking about having it lingering in or around our Lynn, MA home is unacceptable.

Clogged Sewer Line

Sewer lines can become clogged by the wrong things being forced down our drains. If you’d like a reminder about common items that should never end up being flushed, check out our blog “What Not to Flush Down Your Toilet”.

Roots in the Sewer Line

Ahhh, don’t you love the beauty of trees? Sadly, the roots from those same trees that we love can also work their way toward our sewer line and cause cracks in the system. That’s something that needs to be take care of, the sooner the better.

Video Inspection

Our video inspection equipment allows us to determine the location and depth of the sewer line damage from above ground. This allows for spot repairs whenever possible. We can tell many things including the condition and type of blockage in your sewer pipe. This non-destructive method of assessing root and other damage allows us to find the exact location of the problem and fix it efficiently with minimal digging.

Sewer Line Symptoms

1. Sewer Gas – Nobody wants to smell sewer gas anywhere near their home, and they shouldn’t have to.
2. Slow drains – If you are constantly plunging your drains or they are always running slow, give us a call to diagnose your problem.
3. Mold – A crack within your sewer line inside your home can cause mold to grow. Mold loves dark damp places and will grow quickly if given the chance.
4. Bright green grass – A cracked sewer line will give a section of your yard a jolt of nutrients. While it may give that section of your yard a beautiful green glow, nobody wants sewage leaking into their yard.

Waldman Plumbing & Heating has been helping the residents of Lynn, MA and the North Shore area for over 100 years with their sewer line service. If you think you have a sewer line in need of repair, check out our coupons and then give us a call for an appointment.