Taking a shower is part of most people’s daily routine. A good shower can do wonders for your mind and body. Cold showers can increase alertness, help muscles to recover and even improve immunity, while hot showers can detox your body, repair cells and ease anxiety.
Showering may be beneficial for your well-being, but if you fall into a couple of common bad habits, it can take its toll on your plumbing. If you’re not careful, you may find that a relaxing shower quickly turns into a stressful morning where you have to deal with some rather serious plumbing problems!
Here are six bad shower habits you should try to avoid in order to keep your bathroom looking great and your plumbing in Chicagoland working properly:
If you’re in a rush in the morning, then cleaning up the little puddle of water on your bathroom floor from your shower may be the last thing on your mind, but perhaps it shouldn’t be. You wouldn’t ignore a water leak, and you certainly shouldn’t ignore water spillage from the shower!
Leaving water on the floor of your bathroom is a recipe for disaster. That water could cause mold growth, ruin your floor and potentially cause much more widespread problems. Investing in a bath mat and cleaning up water spills after a shower will help to prevent serious water damage.
If you’re used to seeing a puddle of water next to your shower, then you may not notice immediately if you have a leak – which could result in a flooded bathroom, or worse!
Did you know that just turning the water on in your shower could be damaging to your plumbing? Hard water, like the water in Chicago, is often rich in certain minerals that can clog your showerhead.
When hard water dries, it leaves deposits. Over time, these deposits will block the showerhead nozzle and reduce water flow. Thankfully, this common problem has a very easy solution!
Just a little white vinegar is normally all that’s needed to remove calcium deposits, improving the appearance and function of your shower head in minutes.
If you’re partial to taking long showers, then there’s a good reason to curb the habit – mold! All the steam that builds up in your bathroom during long showers can result in the development of mold, which is not good for your family’s health.
Mold will quickly spread to all the nooks and crannies in your bathroom if you don’t have good ventilation. Shower curtains and loofahs are also breeding grounds for mold and bacteria and may need regular cleaning if you’ve noticed signs of mold.
One way to prevent mold growth is by reducing the temperature and length of your shower. You can also increase ventilation and reduce mold by opening a window or installing an exhaust fan.
One of the worst shower habits for your plumbing is letting hair get into the drain. Over time, a few hairs can become a lot of hair and suddenly the drain is blocked and you’re making the call to an emergency plumber in Chicagoland to fix the problem.
Like most bad shower habits that can ruin your plumbing, this one has a simple solution – a drain stopper. Drain stoppers are an affordable and effective way to stop hair and other debris from clogging the drain.
If you’ve noticed a clog in your drain – whether from hair or other debris – then one of the worst things you can do is reach for a chemical cleaner. Chemical cleaners may get rid of the clog, but they could potentially leave you with a more serious problem.
Not only are chemical cleaners bad for the environment, they’re also bad for your plumbing. Those harsh chemicals will corrode your pipes, which isn’t as easy or affordable to fix as a simple clog.
Plungers and plumber’s snakes are safer tools to remove blockages that won’t cause damage to your pipes in the process. If ever in doubt about how to unclog a drain, it’s always best to call a trained plumber in Chicagoland who’ll be able to assess and solve the problem quickly.
Many plumbing problems come with plenty of warning signs before true disaster strikes. This is especially the case in the bathroom, where your shower is likely to give you a fair bit of advanced warning if all is not well!
Constant dripping may not seem like a major problem, but it could be a sign that you need to adjust water pressure before you ruin the plumbing. Similarly, hot water not lasting as long as you hoped is not only annoying, but it may also be a sign of a serious problem with your water heater.
Faster running water, slower running water, oddly colored water, poor drainage and any other alterations to the way your shower works or how the water looks need addressing quickly. It’s always better to call a plumber as soon as you notice small problems than to ignore the problems and risk them escalating.
Not all habits are bad habits. If you can get into the routine of booking regular plumbing inspections and start paying attention to warning signs, then you can enjoy healthier plumbing and a reduced risk of disasters occurring!
For advice and guidance in a plumbing emergency or for the answer to any questions you may have about your bathroom plumbing, simply get in touch with Arco Plumbing. Arco Plumbing is one of the most well-established and trusted plumbing services in the Chicagoland region, and the only experts you need to call for plumbing advice in Westmont and the surrounding areas.
Whether your existing toilet seat is old or broken and in need of replacement or you’ve just installed a new toilet, fitting a toilet seat & lid should only take a few minutes when you know what you’re doing. This quick and simple DIY project is an easy way to brighten up your bathroom without much effort or any professional tools.
Here are seven tips for replacing a toilet seat & lid and one ultimate trick to bear in mind to keep your bathroom plumbing in tip top condition:
If you’re considering installing a new seat & lid on your toilet because your existing seat isn’t working properly, then you may not need a new seat at all! An unsteady or sliding toilet seat can often be fixed with just a simple hinge or bolt adjustment.
Tightening a loose hinge or bolt or replacing a broken bolt may be all that’s needed to make the seat steady. Adjustments to the hinge position will also prevent problems like the toilet seat falling down or the seat not covering the bowl properly.
Just replacing some or all of the fittings could save you some money and mean that you don’t need to spend time trying to find another toilet seat & lid that matches your bathroom design.
One of the most important tips to bear in mind when replacing a toilet seat & lid is to take measurements. You’ll need to measure the existing toilet seat and take note of the shape to make sure that you buy a replacement that fits properly.
If your toilet doesn’t have a seat, then measure the width of the toilet bowl, the space between the holes, and the length of the bowl from the middle. The likelihood is you’ll either need a round or oval seat, as these are two of the most common toilet seat shapes.
While you’ll need to match your existing toilet seat for shape and size to get the correct fit, it doesn’t mean that you can’t upgrade your toilet seat in another way.
One thing to consider when replacing a toilet seat & lid is the option of a soft-close toilet seat. These can cost more than a traditional seat, but they close smoothly and quietly by themselves. Some soft-close seats also come with other advanced features like built-in night lights.
If you’re replacing your toilet seat anyway, it’s worth shopping around for an upgrade if you’re budget can stretch to it.
As with any project, it’s best to start with the tools you need ready. Thankfully, replacing a toilet lid & seat doesn’t require much equipment, but you will need a:
You may also want to wear gloves while working on the toilet or clean it thoroughly first with an anti-bacterial spray. As you’ll likely need to kneel down when removing and replacing the seat, it may be easier to use knee pads or place a towel or soft rug on the floor.
On most toilets, there’s a bolt on either side that needs to be removed to take off the seat. You’ll need to remove the bolt caps and hold the nuts in place while you unscrew the bolts, or alternatively remove the nuts first and then the bolts.
For older toilet seats where the bolts don’t come off easily, you may need to spray them with WD-40. WD-40 will loosen the bolts and make it much easier to remove them.
If WD-40 doesn’t do the trick, then the other option is to cut the bolts using a hacksaw. Simply protect the toilet bowl with tape and saw off the bolts beneath the hinge.
Installing your new toilet seat & lid may be as simple as following the same process for removing the seat but in reverse. However, it’s always best to read the instructions carefully before attaching the new seat & lid.
Much like removing the toilet seat, the installation process will vary depending on the type of toilet seat you’re installing; different types and brands of toilet seat will also come with different hardware. The installation process will go much simpler when you know what you’re doing before you begin!
To get the perfect fit for your new toilet seat & lid, make sure that you leave the nuts loose during the installation. Tightening the nuts too much while you’re still fitting the seat will limit the adjustments you can make. Only tighten the nuts fully when you’re 100% happy with the final position.
If you’re using plastic nuts, then you may not want to tighten them all the way. Plastic nuts that are too tight may break sooner and mean that you’ll need to replace the fittings again. Over-tightening metal nuts may also prove problematic at a later date if you need to remove or adjust your toilet seat.
Much more can go wrong with your bathroom fixtures than an old or broken toilet seat. There are many problems that can affect your toilet, such as issues with the flush, constantly running water in the tank and moisture around the toilet fixtures.
For peace of mind over the health of your plumbing, booking a home plumbing inspection is a great idea. The inspection will cover everything from the pipes and lines in your home to toilets and sinks to give you the ultimate reassurance that your plumbing is in excellent condition.
Contact Arco Plumbing in Westmont IL for bathroom plumbing maintenance, installations and replacements as well as repairs, or give us a call for advice about any aspect of your plumbing.
There comes a time for many homeowners when the services of a professional plumber are essential. You may need a sink unclogging, a leak repaired, or a full basement rough-in – no matter the reason you need a plumber, it’s always handy in these situations to have a good relationship with a local service!
So, how can you tell whether a plumber is the best fit for a job? Just like when you hire any contractor, there are some important questions to ask before you make a decision over which plumbing company is right for your needs.
Here are eight tips and questions to ask, before you hire a plumber in Chicago for your plumbing job:
The first thing that you need to know is whether the company offers the services you need. There’s no point in hiring a commercial plumber in Chicago, if you need a residential plumber, or vice versa. Some plumbing companies will offer both commercial and residential plumbing services, but others may only offer one service or the other, so it’s worth asking in advance to make sure that you hire the right type of plumbing company!
You’ll find that not every plumber offers the same guarantees or warranties on their work. If something goes wrong after the work is completed, some plumbers will agree to return and fix the problem within a set timeframe, while others may have more exacting conditions on what they will/won’t replace or repair. Before you hire a plumber, you should ask them what guarantees and warranties they provide and make sure that you get them in writing before work begins.
Does the company provide free estimates? Will you get a quote over the phone? Are estimates provided after a home inspection? It’s important to have a clear understanding of the cost of a project before work gets underway – and when payment will be due after work is completed! In most situations, your plumber should be able to give you a clear estimate of the cost of the project after having a look at the work that needs doing.
Another essential payment-related question is whether the plumber offers fixed rates or hourly rates. If the payment is a fixed rate, then you know that the price won’t change, but an hourly rate can be very unpredictable, especially if the job doesn’t go to plan. Knowing whether you’ll be paying a set fee or are going to be charged by the hour for work will help you to plan ahead for expenses. If you don’t want to pay an hourly rate, then check the contract to make sure there are no clauses stating that you’ll need to pay reasonable costs.
A great way to get a better understanding of a plumbing company and their reputability, is to check online reviews and ratings. There are many review sources online, including BBB reviews (Better Business Bureau), which help to build trust between businesses and customers. Through BBB, you can search for businesses in your local area, check what rating they have (F to A+), see whether they’re a BBB accredited business, and even look at reviews and complaints.
It’s always better to know in advance who’ll be completing your plumbing job: will it be the person who gave you your estimate, or will it be someone else? Some plumbing companies have multiple plumbers on staff or hire subcontractors; some plumbing companies have just a single plumber. Ask who’ll be completing the job, and about their qualifications, training, and experience – the company should be happy to share the skills of their plumbers!
Making sure that the company you choose is licensed, bonded, and insured is one of the most important things to do before you hire a plumber in Chicagoland. Plumbers in Illinois require a license to work, so it’s essential to make sure that they have one! Insurance and bonding is protection for both you and the company: insurance means the company is covered in the event of an accident, and bonding means that there’s money available to cover the cost of any claim filed by a customer – protecting you against unsuitable business practices and poor workmanship.
No matter the type of contractor that you need to hire, experience should always be an important factor in the decision-making process. An experienced plumbing company should be able to identify and repair most common problems very quickly and they’ll have a better understanding of how to manage situations that are out of the ordinary. Most businesses share their experience on their websites, and you’ll also be able to find how long they’ve been in business on BBB, or simply by asking them directly!
If you’re looking to hire a plumber in Chicagoland, then the team at Arco Plumbing are happy to answer your questions!
Arco Plumbing is a residential and commercial plumbing service that’s based in Westmont, IL and serves the Chicagoland area. Our company was founded more than four decades ago, in 1978, and since 1985, we’ve been proud to be an A+ BBB rated business.
We’re licensed, bonded, and insured, and offer fixed rate payments on all our plumbing services in Chicagoland. You can get in touch with us today for a free home estimate on your plumbing job in Chicagoland or advice on your plumbing problem or project. Whether you need general plumbing services or emergency services, we have you covered!
Do you worry about what would happen in the event of a plumbing emergency in your home? Or perhaps you’ve encountered a plumbing emergency in Chicagoland before, but didn’t know how to stop the problem in time to prevent damage?
Plumbing emergencies can quickly cause you to panic, but if you know what to do in advance, then it’s much easier to stay calm and tackle the problem head on. We’re going to walk you through what to do immediately, when to call a plumber, how to identify and react to common problems, and how to prevent problems, so you always know what to do in an emergency!
The second you realize that a problem has arisen with your plumbing, you need to act quickly. If you’re not 100% sure of the source of the plumbing problem, here’s a simple checklist that’ll help you to prevent as much damage as possible:
Unless you have any prior plumbing knowledge, then most plumbing emergencies will result in a call to the professionals. Plumbing problems can quickly progress into large problems, so the sooner you call a plumber in Chicagoland, the better!
Once you’ve checked the essentials off the list, if there’s nothing more you feel that you can do, then make the call to Arco Plumbing. It’s a smart move to save our number in your phone in case of a plumbing emergency – 630-960-5950.
By calling a plumber quickly, you’ll be able to get expert advice on what to do next as you wait for back up to arrive, potentially saving you a lot of money on repairs!
In some emergencies, you may be able to do more to reduce the risk of further damage or even solve the emergency altogether – the more you know, the easier it is to react quickly in the event of a plumbing emergency in Chicagoland.
Not all plumbing emergencies are immediately dangerous, but some are. Here are six common plumbing emergencies, what to do if they arise, and when you’ll need to call for back up:
Few plumbing emergencies are more serious than gas leaks. The second you suspect a gas leak, and only if it’s safe to do so, turn off the main valve. Extinguish any flames, don’t adjust any electrical switches, open the windows, and leave the premises. As soon as you’re safe, call the experts!
There’s very little that you can do in the event of a burst or leaking pipe, other than turning off the main water valve. As soon as the valve is off, you’ll need to call a Chicagoland plumber. If the pipes have frozen, inspect them for damage and follow the same protocol for a burst or leaking pipe if you notice any problem areas.
If you notice a nasty smell coming from your drains or when you run water from a faucet, then it definitely constitutes an emergency! Fouls smells often indicate a sewage problem, or a serious issue with your sump pump or septic system. You should always call a plumber in the event of sewage-type smells in your home, as DIY fixes can make the problem worse.
Clogged drains are a very common plumbing problem that you can often solve yourself. All you’ll need to remedy most cases of a blocked drain is a plunger. Without using any chemicals, try and remove the clog yourself with the plunger, aiming to remove enough of the block in the system to get the water draining again.
If using a plunger doesn’t fix the problem or if the water is still draining very slowly, you’ll need to call a plumber.
A broken toilet can be a nuisance, but it’s not the end of the world! Just like with a clogged sink, a plunger is the best tool in your arsenal for toilet blockages. If the toilet is running, check the overflow valve, flapper seal, flapper chain, and fill valve to see if there are any problems.
It’s best to contact a plumber if you can’t identify the problem yourself, if the toilet is leaking seriously, or if you can’t remove the clog.
If your water heater is leaking, then it can quickly start to damage the surrounding area. Turn off water and power supply to the heater, along with the main water valve as an additional precaution. Once power to the heater and gas supply (if you have a gas heater) have been shut off, you can start to drain the heater. If you aren’t comfortable draining the heater, you’ll need to call a plumber.
You can avoid many plumbing emergencies in Chicagoland with the right know-how. Here are ten top tips to prevent common plumbing problems:
Knowing what to do when faced with a plumbing emergency in Chicagoland can make the whole ordeal a lot easier! If you ever need an emergency plumbing response in the event of a plumbing problem or if you’d like to book an inspection for your plumbing, get in touch to with Arco Plumbing in Westmont, Illinois immedeiately at 630-960-5950 !
Bathrooms are one of the most unique rooms in the house, but when it comes to health and safety at home, that’s not always a good thing. An abundance of hard tiles, smooth porcelain, and sleek metal, combined with a lot of water, creates an environment where it’s very easy to slip and fall.
Nobody is exempt from the dangers of a bathroom environment, people of all ages injure themselves in the bathroom every year, a figure that is in the hundreds of thousands. A bathroom can be very dangerous, but it doesn’t have to be!
There are many small ways that you can upgrade your bathroom to make it safer, more practical, and better-looking – none of which have to break the bank. Here are ten excellent ways to lower the risk of slipping in the bathroom, whilst still keeping the beauty of your bathroom intact:
Tip One: Buy A Quality Bath Mat
Buying a bath mat is one of the least expensive and simplest investments that you can make to upgrade your bathroom. The small purchase can make getting in and out of the shower or bath much safer, and make sure that your feet are dry before you step onto your bathroom tiles or laminate flooring. Most types of bath mats will suffice, as long as the mat doesn’t slide around on the floor of the bathroom.
Tip Two: Invest in Shower Mats and Bath Tub Mats
While it’s understandable that you may not want your bathroom to become ‘the room of many mats’, twinning your bath mat with a non-slip mat inside your shower or bath tub is a wise investment.
It can get very slippery inside baths and showers, and a non-slip mat will help to make sure that you can stand and move around a lot safer. Slip resistant bath mats will also making getting out of the bath much easier.
Tip Three: Upgrade to Non-Slip Flooring
A step above a mat outside your shower or bath is to upgrade to non-slip flooring. Bathroom flooring is often made from materials that are easy to clean, to lower home maintenance, and materials that are resistant to water damage. Changing to a specialist non-slip material will still mean that your bathroom is easy to clean and resistant to water damage, but the surface will be a lot safer.
Tip Four: Install Bars in Your Bathroom
It’s often not the actual slip that causes an injury but hitting the hard bathroom floor. Grab bars or hand grips are an incredibly effective way to prevent most types of slipping accidents in the bathroom.
Bars can be installed anywhere in a bathroom, but they can be most effective in places around the bath or shower and around the toilet, where slipping is very common. There are many design styles to choose from for an aesthetically pleasing bar, so you don’t need to alter your bathroom design too drastically.
Tip Five: Keep Water Contained with Shower Curtains
Shower curtains are more than just a design feature, they’re very important for keeping water inside the bath tub and shower where it’s less likely to cause you to slip and fall. Investing in a quality shower curtain will help to prevent those dangerous little puddles forming just outside the tub that can very easily be slipped on.
Tip Six: Make Sure Your Bathroom Has Good Lighting
Being able to see the dangers in your bathroom is one of the best preventive measures that you can take to avoiding them. Good bathroom lighting, that lights up every corner of your bathroom, will help to make sure that you don’t miss any puddles of water or slippery spots on the floor.
Good natural lighting and night lights can be just as helpful as the main artificial lighting, so it’s worth making sure that your bathroom windows are unobstructed and even think about investing in a small bathroom night light.
Tip Seven: Install a Chair in Your Shower
A shower seat is a bigger investment than a bath mat, but it’s an essential if you or one of your family members has trouble standing for prolonged periods in the shower. Being able to sit in the shower can prevent a lot of accidents and make showering easier for many people.
There are different styles of shower seat available, including ones that easily fold up, so the shower can still be used as a standing shower for other members of the family.
Tip Eight: Refinish Your Bath Tub
An alternative to a mat inside your bath is to refinish the bottom of the bath tub. There are a range of textured agents available that transform the bottom of the bath tub into a textured surface. These can make the tub surface much easier to grip without having to add a separate mat to the tub.
Tip Nine: Invest in A Taller Toilet
A taller toilet is a brilliant investment for adult-only homes where there is unlikely to be a child that needs to use the toilet. Taller toilets are easier to use and can lower the risk of falling around the toilet area when sitting down or standing up.
Many general plumbing services in the Westmont, IL area cover the installation of standard and taller toilets, so you shouldn’t have any problem getting one installed in your home.
Tip Ten: Keep Your Bathroom Plumbing Maintained
There is a lot that you can add to your bathroom to make it a safer environment, but there’s also a lot going on behind the scenes that needs to be considered when trying to make sure that your bathroom is as safe as possible.
All that plumbing for your shower, bath, sink, and toilet should be regularly maintained as part of your standard home maintenance. Good plumbing home maintenance will help to prevent leaks that can lead to slippery surfaces and pools of water that may go unnoticed.
Arranging for a Chicago plumber who provides general plumbing services in your area to inspect your plumbing after any installation, or every now and again, will give you a peace of mind about the general safety of your bathroom.
You don’t need to completely overhaul your bathroom to make it a safe part of your home. Just taking on board a handful of the top tips here and getting your plumbing regularly checked, will improve your bathroom and make it safer for the whole family to use every day.