The Plumbing Industry’s Best Kept Secret About Hard Water

The Plumbing Industry’s Best Kept Secret About Hard Water

hardwatersecret
There’s an old saying that claims that if you knew how the sausage was made, you’d never eat sausage again. In the plumbing industry, many believe that if our customers knew how their plumbing gets fixed, they would never need plumbers again.
 
At Heidler, Inc. we have more faith in our community than that! That’s why we decided to open up about one of the plumbing industry’s best-kept secrets: hard water stain removal! Read on to learn how the pros deal with hard water, including why you should consider investing in a water softener.

What Does “Hard Water” Mean?

watersoftenerHard water is a term that is used to describe water that has a high mineral content- usually high in magnesium and calcium.
 
It’s not necessarily dangerous to your health, but hard water can be a nuisance and wreak havoc on your clothes, skin, and hair.
 
Hard water is also known to leave behind hard to clean stains on surfaces in your home. Everything from your bathtubs, showers, toilets, and sinks, to your silverware, glasses, and floors can be streaked or spotted with hard water stains.
 
Not to mention that hard water makes it tougher to rinse soaps and detergents away, so it can lead to a buildup of soap scum. It can also require you to use more detergent in your laundry, costing you more money in the future.

How Can You Clean Hard Water Stains Yourself?

Now we get to the good stuff: how you can clean hard water stains yourself, using ingredients you probably already have in your house! All you need is vinegar, baking soda, fresh lemon juice, and a spray bottle.
 
cleaningstainsOn most surfaces:

  • Mix 50% vinegar and 50% water in the spray bottle
  • Spray stains and let sit for 5-10 minutes
  • Rinse, and wipe the surface clean to avoid more stains

On tougher stains:

  • Combine baking soda and vinegar until it forms a paste
  • Cover stains with the paste and let sit for 15 minutes
  • Scrub until the stain is gone
  • Rinse and wipe clean

On faucets and fixtures with scale buildup:

  • Using a spray bottle, spray lemon juice directly onto scale buildup
  • Let sit for a few minutes
  • Wipe faucet clean and run water for a few seconds
  • Repeat as needed until all mineral deposits are gone

Why Should You Install a Water Softener?

Now that you know how to clean up after your hard water stains, what can you do to prevent more stains in the future? You can install a water softener! Water softeners remove hard minerals from your water, and:

    watersoftener

  • Improves the look and feel of clothes, skin, and hair
  • Makes your water using appliances last longer
  • Improves your water pressure
  • Keeps your surfaces free from stains!

No one wants their mirrors, tubs, dishes, or clothes to stay looking (or actually being) dirty after they’ve cleaned them.
 
Don’t let these secrets be secrets any longer- share this article with all your friends today!
 
Remember that when you’re ready to put an end to hard water in your home, you can call Heidler, Inc. at (410) 268-7191 for water softener installation in Annapolis, MD.

Finding Your Perfect Bathroom/ Kitchen Sink

Finding Your Perfect Bathroom/ Kitchen Sink

bathroomsink

Finding the perfect sink to fit the look of not only your kitchen or bathroom but also of your home, in general, can be more stressful than you initially anticipated. Who knew there were so many different kinds of sinks and faucets?!

If you are struggling to find the perfect bathroom or kitchen sink for your home, don’t worry! Heidler, Inc has put together some information to help you find a new kitchen or bathroom sink that will suit your home and lifestyle perfectly!

Research Different Kinds of Sinks

sinkresearchIf you are feeling overwhelmed by the number of options available for both kitchen and bathroom sinks, it may help do some sink research and narrow down your choices.

The internet is a near limitless source of information and can be very useful in helping you look for types of kitchen sinks, bathroom sinks, and even bar sinks for your entertaining area.

Getting a visual of the different types of sinks and faucets that are out there can help you get an idea of what you like and don’t like.

Once you have that, you can head out to a showroom to look at what a particular style of sink might look like in a completed bathroom. You may find that the sink you had in mind looks better in pictures than in practice, and that’s alright! It’s all part of your sink research.

How Much Should Your New Sink Cost?

sinkcostAs with any home improvement project, it’s always important to keep your budget in mind when selecting your new sink.

Installation for kitchen or bathroom plumbing can run you anywhere from $200 to about $550, depending on the style of your sink, the materials it’s made of, and how involved the installation process is.

With that in mind, you may need to compromise a bit in order to get a sink that suits both your style and your budget. If you live alone, for example, and wash the few dishes that accumulate throughout the day by hand, then a sink with an attached drainboard may be a wise investment for you. A large, farmhouse sink may be more aesthetically pleasing, but you probably won’t get the full value out of it.

Head to Your Local Plumbing Store For More

callusNow that you know what kind of sink you are interested in and how much you are willing to spend on certain features, it’s time to call up your local hardware or plumbing store to make sure your perfect sink is actually available.

If you call up a plumbing store and they don’t sell the type of sink you are looking for, don’t lose heart. They may be able to refer you to a different store that carries exactly what you are looking for.

Heidler, Inc is here to answer any other questions you may have about choosing and installing your new kitchen or bathroom sink!

Give us a call today at (410) 268-7191 for service in Annapolis. And don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family to help them find the perfect sink as well!

Who’s Picking up Your Plumbing Bill?

Who’s Picking up Your Plumbing Bill?

nobodytells

Is there anything worse than getting home after a long day of work, and a stressful commute home, than opening your front door to find that a plumbing catastrophe has taken place in your absence?

Honestly, I think not. What makes the entire situation worse is knowing that once the mess is all cleaned up, you’ll be stuck with a plumbing bill to pay…but maybe you won’t have to pay that bill yourself.

If you rent your home, you should know that your landlord may be responsible for fixing the emergency plumbing issues in your home. Let’s take a look at why your landlord has to pay, and how much they are responsible for.

How Much Does Your Landlord Have to Pay For?

landlordpaysWhen you sign a lease to rent an apartment, you agree to pay monthly for your living space, and your landlord agrees to provide you with a comfortable living space.

That means that when you have a plumbing emergency that threatens your comfort and personal safety, your landlord has to pay to fix it.

Flooding caused by a backed up drain can lead to harmful bacteria in your home, and any kind of excess water in your home can lead to mold and mildew growth, which can lead to a host of respiratory and health issues.

Plumbing Repairs For Rental Homes

rentalhomes

As long as you rent your home, you won’t have the responsibility for emergency plumbing repairs.

If you own your own home, however, there is no landlord to take on that responsibility for you, so it falls on you.

If you own a building or house, but you hire a management company to handle the rental operations, then the company becomes responsible for plumbing repairs. In some cases, even as a renter, you may be required to pay for minors repairs.

Your lease agreement may also stipulate a specific amount, below which you agree to pay for plumbing services. If your emergency repairs cost more than the agreed upon amount, however, the responsibility falls back on your landlord again.

Consult Local Rules And Ordinances

localrules

Always remember that there are certain laws and local rules that protect you as a renter.

In some cases, your landlord may be under legal obligation to cover the cost of any emergency plumbing repairs that tenants like you might incur.

The specific legal requirements your landlord can be held to vary somewhat from one state to another, and even from one city to another. Always check local rules and ordinances, to see precisely what your local government has to say about your landlord’s responsibilities to you with regard to plumbing repair costs.

If the cost of plumbing repairs has been keeping you from calling for plumbing services in your home, you can stop worrying about that now!

Now that you know the responsibility of paying for your emergency plumbing repairs falls on your landlord, you can call Heidler, Inc. for all your home plumbing needs. Our experienced plumbing technicians are ready to help you with plumbing repairs, installations, and maintenance in Annapolis, MD.

3 Major Bathroom Remodeling Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

3 Major Bathroom Remodeling Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

mistake

Remodeling your bathroom seems like a fantastic idea. It’s a fun project and saves you plenty of money. You know exactly what you’re doing, right? Chances are you have a general idea of what you’re doing but might not be entirely qualified to perform all tasks.

Maybe you have a different idea for the flooring or underestimated expenses. These mistakes can be costly, slow your progress, or be the cause for significant repairs in the future.  Let’s review a few bathroom remodeling mistakes and how to avoid them!

Moving Fixtures Without a Plumber

Yes, calling a plumber can increase the amount you spend on your bathroom remodel. However, this increased cost is lowered over time by not having to pay for repairs in the future.

Someone probably told you, “do it right or don’t do it at all.” If this was never said, take heed: putting half the effort or money into a project will only cause problems. Moving fixtures with a plumber’s help will:

  • Improve water flow.
  • Limit the risk of water damage.
  • Ensure there are no leaks.
  • Repair any mold or water damage from old fixtures.

Carpet Flooring

carpet

Carpet flooring is a bad idea in bathrooms. Sure, it’s nice to step out of the shower onto something other than cold tiles, however, moisture and the inability to dry carpet thoroughly is begging for mildew and mold.

Because it’s almost impossible to clean or keep dry leads to other problems, including damage to the wood foundation that often runs under carpeting, it’s best to leave them out of your next bathroom remodel project.

Forgetting Your Budget

Taking on a bathroom remodeling project yourself can save you some money. While this is nice, if you forget about your budget or don’t make one to begin with, you may end up out of money with a half-finished washroom. Follow these steps to make and stick to a budget:

  • Dream Big: Figure out what materials you’d love to use, items to replace, and ideal flooring.
  • Revise the List: Take those big dreams and figure out what is doable and what are must-haves, wants, and impossible.
  • Research: Every material you’ll use should be researched for the best price – always be sure to compare multiple options for the best choices.
  • Allow for Overages: Many contractors recommend adding about 30% of your total cost to the budget. This allows for repairs or forgotten necessities.

Remembering your budget and using it wisely will prevent stretching your finances too thin as well as the annoyance of putting a project on hold.

Professional Help May Not Cost as Much as You Think

After determining your budget and what it will cost you to complete a bathroom remodel yourself, consult a professional. There is a decent chance that you can hire them for specific projects or for the entire project.

The idea behind this is to prevent problems in the long-run and additional costs from faulty installations or missed steps. If you’d like to discuss a bathroom remodel with a professional or maybe get some advice on where to start, give Heidler, Inc a call!

Fit Your Granite Countertops for a Sink

Fit Your Granite Countertops for a Sink

sinkongranite

Granite countertops are increasingly popular, popping up in kitchens all around Annapolis, MD. They give a kitchen a classy look and can seriously increase the value of a home. Adding the right sink to your granite will bring your kitchen to the next level. Learn how to properly fit your granite countertops for a sink and ensure your new kitchen plumbing runs smoothly.

Take the Proper Measurements on the Countertop and Available Space

rightmeasurementBefore cutting the hole for the sink, do the proper measurements on the countertop. Allow enough space for the kitchen plumbing underneath the countertop and ensure it is placed in a practical spot.

Tape the cardboard outline of your sink onto the granite, then cut. For cutting granite, use a diamond blade on a circular saw.

This tool is best not just for cutting, but shaping your stone as well. Once the opening has been made, you can flip your granite over and get ready to insert the sink.

Source a Sink That is to Your Liking and Fits the Space

matchingsinkYour sink should match the design of your kitchen. So, allow for enough space for the plumbing and storage underneath. Now that your granite is cut and flipped, you can secure your sink.

Wipe your granite and sink with denatured alcohol, and then place the sink over the hole to trace. Once traced, remove the sink and apply caulk to the edge of the hole. Place the sink back over the hole and press down. Seal the sink in place using the clamps provided with your sink purchase. Now you can turn your countertop back over to install them.

Consider Professional Installation By a Plumber

callaplumberfWould you take your car to anyone who wasn’t a licensed mechanic? No, probably not. So why try installing your kitchen plumbing on your own if you’re not a plumber? Professional plumbers have expertise that the average homeowner simply doesn’t.

Education and experience can’t be beaten. If you’re investing significant amounts of time and money to make changes to your kitchen, then you might as well consider professional installation by a plumber who will execute the task correctly.

New kitchen features are always great to look at. In addition to being eye-catching, upgrading your kitchen will add value to your home if you ever decide to sell it. Two birds, one stone!

Signs That a Replacement is Better Than a Repair

Signs a Replacement is Better than a Repair in Your Plumbing System

plumbingreplacement

It happens to many homeowners in Annapolis, MD who are faced with delicate plumbing devices. Each time it breaks you wonder which is the best option: calling for repairs or buying a new one. Getting it fixed might cost less in the short-term, but you know eventually it will need to be replaced.

Buying new equipment might cost a lot of money, but modern devices tend to be more energy efficient and don’t require too much upkeep. It’s an investment that might pay off down the road. But how do you know if it’s time to buy a replacement? Here’s what you need to know when it comes to repairing or repiping.

Concerning the Shower Top

showertopSomething to keep in mind when it comes to shower tops is the possibility of clogs. This may be caused by sediment buildup and impact on the device’s water pressure and efficiency.

It also could lead to water leaks and widespread water damage. If you think it’s time to buy a replacement shower top, go for a water-efficient model. Save money on your next utility bill by consuming less water.

Anything but the Kitchen Sink

kitchensinkA kitchen sink in good condition should be a top priority. It’s the most used sink in your home. Any damage or cracks mean it’s likely to begin leaking.

The resulting water damage may spread throughout your kitchen, which will be expensive to fix.

Purchasing a new kitchen sink to replace an old, beat up one will prevent this scenario from happening. When you’re out for a replacement kitchen sink, be sure to get water-efficient faucets as well. This will reduce a home’s water consumption and lower the charges on your water bill.

Water Heater in Decline

waterheaterWe often take water heaters for granted but must remember they go through a lot of stress every day. Some heaters end up wearing down at an alarming rate. Water leaks, rust spots, and loud noises caused by sediment buildup are all signs of a device in decline.

These types of problems could reduce the device’s efficiency and accelerate the damage being done. One solution to these issues could be to buy a tankless water heater.

These devices connect directly to a home’s plumbing, which gives you access to a limitless supply of hot water but only as much as you need. Since you don’t need a tank, you can remove the old one to gain more storage space. Tankless water heaters are both practical and efficient.

Washing Machine Replacement

washingmachineWashing machines are sturdy and meant to last about a decade, but that doesn’t mean something can’t go wrong and cause homeowners to buy a replacement. Leaks due to cracks in the tub or loose drums or motor mounts, for example, cost a lot of money to fix.

In these cases, it often makes more sense to purchase a replacement washing machine rather than call for repairs. Modern washers also consume less water and energy than old models. This means you can save on utility charges while helping the environment.

These Outdoor Plumbing Tips will Help Your Home Through Spring

These Outdoor Plumbing Tips will Help Your Home Through Spring

Outdoor Plumbing

It’s not uncommon for homes in Annapolis, MD to get hammered during wintertime, which can do a number on your outdoor plumbing. As temperatures begin to rise and the weather gets warmer, it’s always a good idea to perform an inspection of the outside of your home and perform maintenance to ensure everything is in top condition throughout the spring.

Ignoring these tasks could result in further damage and costly repairs to your home’s plumbing system. Make sure your outdoor plumbing can handle the spring climate. Here are some tips to help your home through the season.

Check Out Your Sprinklers

SprinklerIt’s a good idea to run your sprinklers as soon as the weather becomes warm enough. Run water through all the sprinkler heads to ensure they’re working properly.

If there are any problems, conduct a thorough cleaning or contact a professional plumber to solve the problem.

Don’t forget to inspect the hoses to see if there are any cracks or leaks. This could affect water consumption and how your lawn gets watered.

Inspect All of the Hoses

Outdoor HosesA leaky hose can waste thousands of gallons of water every month, depending on how often you use your home’s outdoor plumbing.

Before spring is in full swing, check all hoses and connections for cracks or anomalies. It’s easy for hoses to become damaged by cold winter temperatures, even if they’re not connected to any plumbing.

It might also be worth it to call in a professional to conduct a leak inspection on all components. They will be able to quickly locate and patch up any problems.

Clean Out Your Gutters

Home GuttersOne of the first things you should do when the snow melts is clean out your gutters. A lot of leaves can accumulate during the fall and even more dirt and debris during the winter, which can impact drainage capacity.

This can cause clogs and backups, which can wreak havoc if obstructions aren’t cleared before any rainfall. The result could be flooding and water damage to your property. The best way to avoid these problems is by cleaning out your eavestroughs as early as possible.

Take a Look at Outdoor Faucets

Outdoor FaucetBefore you connect any hoses to your exterior faucets, turn them on and off again. If the faucet begins to drip, you may have a problem on your hands. It could be the result of a broken pipe or something as simple as a worn out washer.

Either way, it could waste thousands of gallons of water and cause damage to your home and result in standing water around your property. You should have a professional diagnose and fix the problem as soon as possible.

By performing an inspection of your home’s outdoor plumbing system, you can save yourself a lot of time and money by identifying any problems early. Always remember to conduct these simple maintenance steps at the beginning of every spring.

Winter Checklist Tasks You Should Get Done Before the Snow

Winter Checklist Tasks You Should Get Done Before the Snow

Winter Maintenance

It’s the time of the year when the cool temperatures begin to arrive, and homeowners across the region are faced with considering how to protect their property and their families for the months ahead.

Before you start your home maintenance routine, you might consider building a checklist. In this latest post, we’ll highlight the items that should be on your home maintenance checklist as you begin your winter preparations in Annapolis, MD.

Insulation and Ventilation Maintenance

Insulated HomeThe home insulation is one of the most important protective elements during the winter season. It helps keep warm air in the home and prevents it from escaping to the outside.

Your home insulation will also help you to consolidate your energy costs as you spend money heating the property. Make sure the insulation is in peak condition, and speak with home maintenance professionals if you find a problem in the insulation in the coming months.

Make you should also have your home ventilation systems checked and cleaned, to keep airflow consistent throughout the property.

Check Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Smoke Detector CheckThe home detection systems used to keep your family safe are of immense importance throughout the winter season. Make sure you check the batteries in the detectors and ensure that you test your smoke detector regularly throughout the winter.

This is the peak period of the year for home cooking, as the cool weather makes home cooked meals preferable to leaving the comfort of the property.

You should also check the performance of home fireplaces so that any problems can be resolved before the coolest of the winter weather arrives.

Make Sure You Have De-Icing Salt

Frozen PipeThe pathways outside your home can become a dangerous place during the wintertime. It takes just a moment’s lack of concentration for you to slip and fall.

Make sure that you have de-icing salt to clear the pathways, driveway space, and plumbing system ready for the winter season. It’s also important that you pack de-icing salt with you in your vehicle for the coming months.

You might find that your workplace has an issue with ice, which can be resolved quickly by simply placing salt on the ground.

By following the checklist highlighted in our latest post, you can stay safe throughout the winter season. Work with your family to secure your home and plan ahead to keep warm throughout the coming months.