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How does plumbing leak detection work?

Water flowing from a rusty pipe.

Dealing With a Plumbing Leak

If you’re lucky, when your home has a plumbing leak, detection is obvious because there is water puddled up in the floor, or everything under the sink is wet. Unfortunately though, not all plumbing leaks are as easily discovered. If you need help with leak detection in Fort Worth, TX, the team at Molberg Plumbing LLC can be there to help when you call (817) 475-2800. Otherwise, read on to learn some valuable leak detection tips.

Signs You Have a Leak

You may not even know you have a leak, but there are things telling you there is a leak somewhere. Sometimes, you can’t find plumbing leaks because they’re underground. This is when you need special leak detection ability, equipment, or service for an underground leak detection test. What is a leak detection test?

A leak detection test will determine if and where a leak has transpired. A leak detection test can be used for gases or liquids by using one of three methods: 

  • Hydrostatic Testing
  • Infrared
  • Laser Technology

These three leak detection methods are used to test for leaks after gas or liquate pipelines have been created as well as once the lines are in service, like plumbing pipe leak detection in homes. 

How can I tell if I have a water leak?

Well, on the downside, an obvious indication would be mildew and mold. There is a long-standing partnership with plumbing leak and mold and mildew. Consider them the three musketeers of homeownership horrors. 

A water leak can become a dangerous situation if leak detection doesn’t find it pretty quick. Water may be dripping and trickling, but the damage it is doing is moving at warp speed. So, what are some indicators that will tell you there is a possible plumbing leak? 

1. Water Bill is Unusually High 

We all complain about our water bills being high, but they are usually consistent. A home’s average water bill won’t vary more than $10 to $15 each month unless you’ve had a lot of overnight guests or filled a swimming pool. Any spike in the water bill otherwise may be indicating you need a leak detection test. 

 2. Heat Water Running 

The sound of water running should be investigated by checking all the faucets and toilets inside and the outside spigots. If everything is off, check the water meter. When you know every water-based thing in your home is off, the toilets are filled, etc., watch the water meter. If it is spinning, you have leak detection! If it isn’t spinning, write down the reading, wait an hour, and check it again. If there are any changes in the reading, you have leak detection. 

3.   Damp or Wet Floors

As you walk across a carpeted room and suddenly feel a squish under your foot, you’ll probably blame it on a pet or a spill. When that has been cleared up and nothing like that has happened, you may have a slab leak either from plumbing or sewer lines. You can’t ignore this, because that moisture is going to keep coming back and it is spreading further and further throughout your home. Those three musketeers we talked about earlier, plumbing, mildew, and mold, are doing their thing now. As you know, mold can become a toxic situation, a health danger. Call for professional leak detection immediately. 

4.  Foul Smells

You notice a foul, unpleasant smell and can’t find it, so you light a candle and go on about your day. What if that foul odor is from mildew or mold though? That candle isn’t going to do any good. You likely have a plumbing issue somewhere in your home and that mildew and mold are going to keep growing and spreading until you have found the source with leak detection and fixed it. 

5.  Green Patches and Overgrowth in the Lawn

Unless you have extra fertilized your lawn in a certain area any green, lush patch of grass or a concentrated wet spot could be an indication of a sewer or water line leaking. This is allowing hazardous bacteria to grow and spread throughout your lawn. Call for a professional leak detection service as soon as possible. 

6. Cracked Ceilings and Walls

The smallest plumbing leak can cause your foundation to crack. Those cracks will cause the floors and walls to crack and work their way to the ceiling. That leak will continue to spread, your foundation will shift, even sink. The sooner you have leak detection done to find the cause and fix it, the better. 

How do you check for plumbing leaks? 

Water is a wonderful natural source that we use every day. It can also be the enemy, and when mildew and mold follow, they are a destructive trio. Even a newer home can have an undiscovered leak. Detection is key in stopping the damage, and there are several ways to perform leak detection yourself. 

One is the water meter trick we mentioned above and paying attention to large jumps in the water bill as we discussed earlier. The green, lush spots in the yard and cracks in the floor, walls, or ceiling are easy leak detection. A few other leak detection things you can yourself are: 

  • Check Appliances and Fixtures

If the leak detection testing we’ve mentioned does not indicate any leaks, check under all the cabinets in the bathrooms and kitchen. Look for unexplained dampness or water puddles. Check around the dishwasher, washing machine, and water heater too. 

You may want to make this a routine check just to stay on top of things, especially an older home. If you have any leak detection with these checks, check all the water valves are tight and if that doesn’t stop it, call a plumber. 

  • Test the Toilet with Dye

If all the appliances and fixtures check good and all the other leak detection methods we’ve mentioned came up dry, check the toilet. The flapper inside the tank wears out over time and allows water to keep a trickle going from the tank to the bowl. This is costing you money! Put a little food coloring in the tank and if the flapper is leaking, you’ll have colored water in the toilet bowl pretty quick. 

What is plumbing leak detection?

There is leak detection equipment that homeowners can purchase now. Plumbing leak detection is a way to monitor the water flowing through plumbing lines. When the flow is abnormal, there are leak detection systems that will shut the water off entirely. With this type of leak detection, there is less damage to homes and lawns, not to mention the money saved on the monthly water bill. 

While this type of leak detection equipment is a great homeowner help, it doesn’t do the job that plumber’s leak detection can do. They have cameras and other equipment that will travel into the pipeline and find the exact spot where the leak is happening. 

Blue pipe gushing water.

The One Question We All Have – Is a water leak covered by homeowners insurance?

It will depend on your homeowner insurance policy and what it covers. If the insurance adjuster deems the leak was due to homeowner neglect or simply aging of the pipes, then no, your claim will likely be denied. With simple aging of pipes though, your insurance may cover for any replacement of personal items, flooring, etc., but not the leak repair. Review your policy with your agent once a year so that you are current on what your coverage offers. Knowing ahead of time will save you some headaches and worry later. Meanwhile, if you need any help finding leaks with leak detection in Fort Worth, TX so you can get the issue fixed, contact Molberg Plumbing LLC at (817) 475-2800 to get things started.

What Causes a Drain to Get Clogged?

clogged filled sink

Causes of a clogged drain

A clogged drain seems to only happen at an inopportune time, like while you’re cooking a holiday meal, or you have company on the way. Or maybe it’s the tub with a clogged drain after you’ve had a long, hot, soaking bath you can’t drain. Why now at these times and what causes a drain to clog?

If you’re wondering how does a clogged drain happens, the following are some of them most causes for clogged drain, most of which you can prevent:  

1. Scum

Soap scum and toothpaste scum builds up inside a bathroom drain, created from soap residue, typically related to bar soaps that leave a thin film behind inside the pipes.

2. FOG 

Fat, oil, grease getting poured down a garbage disposal will cause a clogged drain. Other things that are commonly poured into the garbage disposal that shouldn’t be put in the garbage disposal, or any drain, are eggshells, large food chunks and fruit peels.

3. Hair

Hair is the most common culprit cause of clogged drains. 

4. Paper and Paper-Like

What may seem the most normal thing to flush is probably the worst thing you can flush. Tissues, cotton balls, baby diapers, baby wipes, and feminine products.

5. Paper Towels and Paper Napkins

These should never be flushed down the toilet! Put it in the trash and take the trash out if that grosses you. These paper products are too thick for toilet plumbing. 

6. Debris and Dirt

Whether you’ve been out gardening or coming in from a soccer game, shake the dirt and grass off before you get in the shower. 

7. Toilet Paper

Yes, you can flush toilet paper down the toilet, but not big wads along with human waste. Courtesy flush, clean again and flush again. Two flushes are better than a toilet with a clogged drain.

8. Foreign Objects

This is more typical of homes with small children. Toddlers like to put things in the toilet, flush it, and watch them spin around and go down. Unfortunately, they don’t always go down all the way. 

What to use to clean blocked drain?

When a homeowner knows certain techniques and is armed with the certain tools, a clogged drain isn’t any big deal.  Here are steps to cleaning a clogged drain in the bathroom or kitchen using a basic plunger and a plumber’s auger.:

  • Fill the sink ¼ full of water.
  • Start vigorously plunging up and down quickly several times. If you’re clearing a clogged drain in a double sink, plug the other side up with a rag.  
  • If the plunging doesn’t clear the clogged drain, remove the P-trap under the sink and let the water out into a bucket. 
  • Feed a plumber’s auger into the stub until you hit the clog. 
  • Pull 18 inches of the cable out and then lock it in place. 
  • Turn the handle clockwise while pushing forward to drive the cable into the pipe further.
  • As the cable get hung up, turn the crank counterclockwise while pulling the cable out. 
  • When the cable is clear,  repeat clockwise cranking and pushing into the pipe again.
  • Remove the cable, put the P-trap back on and turn the hot water on. 
  •  If still slow draining, fill the sink ¼ full of water and plunge again.
  • Run hot water for 5 minutes.

Is Drano really bad for pipes?

Of course the manufacturer of Drano claims it is perfectly safe to use their product. Experienced plumbers however have a different viewpoint.  Since they are the ones on the frontline, so-to-speak, their opinion may hold more value. 

Experienced plumbers say that a chemical cleaner can make a clogged drain worse. The chemical may break things up, but it then turns it all into a congealed, solid mass that will actually make the clogged drain more clogged. 

Another caution that experienced plumber offer when using Drano for clogged drains is what can do to the pipes.  Drano sits inside pipe “working” to dissolve the clog and is continually reacting while generating heat. Using Drano or other chemicals in a clogged toilet can crack the bowl from the heat. Drano will soften PVC pipes and eventually they will break, and if your pipes are corroded and old, Drano can damage them by eating away the glue that is holding them together.

drain sink

How do you unclog a drain naturally?

When the plunger method isn’t working, you can try these natural methods to open up a clogged drain. In fact, you may want to do one of the following methods every 30 days to keep your drains open. 

  • Baking Soda and  Vinegar: Pour half a  cup baking soda and half a cup vinegar down drain then put the plug in and wait 60 minutes. Now pour boiling water in the drain. Repeat this if that doesn’t work the first time to open a clogged drain.
  • Baking Soda and Lemon Juice: Pour half a cup baking soda and half a cup lemon juice into the drain and plug it closed. After one hour, pour boiling water into the drain. 
  • Baking Soda and Salt: Mix half a cup of table salt with half a cup baking soda and pour into the clogged drain. Wait thirty minutes and add boiling.

How much does it cost to clean a clogged drain?

Remember that plumbers typically charge by the hour, not by the job. If you’ve tried everything we’ve suggested and still have a clogged drain, make that phone call. Be prepared for rates that start around $50 and can go up to $150 for the first hour with a total bill reaching upward of $180. 

Can too much baking soda clog a drain?

No, because this isn’t a closed system where pressure build up. Baking soda is one of the most gentle, yet effective, ingredients you can have in your home. It is good for removing odor in almost everything you can from bad breath to smelly stains in the carpet. Call (817) 475-2800 today for your drain cleaning needs in Fort Worth, TX.

How do you find a gas line leak?

gas line leak

Is a tiny gas leak dangerous?

Natural gas is one of the cleanest sources of energy available to us today. It burns cleaner and hotter, one reason why restaurants prefer gas in their kitchen.  It can also be a dangerous when there is a gas leak, which is why a gas line repair is an urgent matter when a gas leak is discovered. 

Hearing the words ‘gas leak’ causes most people a little panic and worry, but a gas leak in the middle of your yard isn’t a dangerous problem. The chances of a natural gas leak killing you is very slim. 

In fact, less than 20 people die from gas explosions or gas leak in one year. You have a better chance of dying from falling out of your bed. In 2014, over 25 people dies from lightning strikes. Regardless how much gas companies police gas leaks, they will always exist. 

With all that aside, should you suspect you have a gas leak, take a moment to make sure it isn’t something as simple as a burner was left on or a pilot light blew out. Then, if you have found an obvious reason, it is better to err to the side of safety and call for gas line check and gas line repair by a professional. 

What are signs of a gas leak in your home?

There is at least one, maybe two gas appliances in most homes today. Those appliance could be the cookstove, oven, or water heater, even a heater for the hot tub or swimming pool. At any point and time, one of these, or the gas line going to them, could develop a leak and need a gas line repair. Depending on the severity of the leak and where it is located, it may be best to have the gas line repair done by a professional. 

Some indicators that are telling you that there is  natural gas leak are: 

  • Rotten Egg or Sulfur Odor: Natural gas itself is odorless, so gas supplies add Mercaptan, a chemical that gives a rotten egg or sulfur odor. So anytime you smell rotten eggs or sulfur, evacuate the area immediately. Once you’re safe, call plumber that is certified for gas line repair, then call the gas company. 
  • Dying Houseplants: When you’ve had a small gas leak for some time, it will zap the oxygen out of your home. This is obvious when you have dead, dying, or unhealthy houseplants. If the gas line repair isn’t done sooner than later, it can be come deadly to you and your family. 
  • Fatigue & Sickness: Natural gas exposure can cause deadly symptoms that include headaches, nausea, sickness, suffocation, and weakness. If anyone in your home has an abnormal or sick feeling, call 911 for an ambulance and advise your home may be exposed to natural gas poisoning and needs a gas line repair.
  • Dead Bushes & Grass:  Under your home are large number of natural gas pipes that are providing the gas to your appliances. If the ground cracks, a gas line will sometimes release gas in the air, absorb the Oxygen and suffocate the bushes and grass around our home. You should call a plumber that is certified to do gas line repairs immediately before this becomes a bigger problem. 
  • Irritated Skin: Skin irritations are sometimes noticed by people when they have been exposed to a natural gas leak. When a gas leak located in the ceiling or behind a wall, it can create a large abundance of natural gas and cause blisters, numbness, skin discoloration, and other physical issues.
  • Discolored Flames: If your gas furnace or any gas pilot lights are burning blue, you don’t have any gas leak at that appliance. However, a yellow flame indicate a gas leak and you’ll need to call a plumber that has gas line repair certification. 

Who is responsible for gas line repair?

Typically, a gas line repair between your home and the meter will be your responsibility. A gas line repair on the other side of the meter will be the utility company’s responsibility. However, if you suspect you have a gas leak, safety is the top priority for the gas company, and they should be notified ASAP so they can disconnect the gas until the gas line repair is complete on either side of the meter. 

leak gas line

 Who do I call to fix a gas line?

You would call a plumber, verifying they are certified for gas line repair and installation. There are easy gas line repairs that a homeowner with wrench and a little DIY ability can do when it is a tiny leak. One example would be if you’ve moved an appliance to install new flooring, you’ll need to disconnect and reconnect your gas cook stove. With gas line repair tape and the proper, well working gas line repair fittings, this can be done is few minutes. 

You can test your gas line repair with a spray bottle with dish liquid and water. Simply spray the water on where you connected the gas and if you see bubbles, then you a gas leak. Undo what you’ve installed, use new gas line fittings, and reconnect.  If you make three attempts without any luck, call a professional plumber, and turn the gas off at the appliance. 

Yes, as a homeowner, you want to get as much from the insurance company as possible after paying them monthly premiums. From the foundation to the roof and beyond.  So, does homeowners insurance cover gas line repair?

The same answer as always, or so it seems, the answer is it depends. If you have a gas leak that causes an explosion, then yes, your homeowner’s insurance will pay for this because it would be considered a covered peril.  

What if you have a gas leak from an appliance that is old and beyond what is considered safe, and an explosion results? Nope your homeowner’s insurance will see that a homeowner neglect and responsibility. Call (817) 475-2800 today for your gas line leak repair in Fort Worth, TX.

What are the steps to remodeling a bathroom?

small bathroom space

Where do you start when remodeling a bathroom?

When it comes to your home, the bathroom may be the most important room. As a family grows, the bathroom doesn’t, so bathroom remodeling is often necessary. What if your home only has one bathroom? Can you do a bathroom remodel without demolition? 

Today, we’re going to answer some commonly asked questions about bathroom remodeling that can you decide if this is a project you want to undertake. Or maybe it would be easier to move? You tell us! 

Bathroom remodeling projects are a popular home renovation choice. However, there isn’t any set formula for the process, most of the time it is by the fly-of-the-seat and trial-n-error.  Here we have put together a bathroom remodel to do list that has proven to help homeowners put together a bathroom remodel and design that is beautiful and functioning.

1. A Realistic Budget

Your first step needs to determine your budget, a realist budget, addressing ever expenditure. Among those expenditures for bathroom remodeling you need to include: 

  • Labor: Drywall, electrical, plumbing, painting.
  • Material: Paint, wallpaper, plumbing fixtures and fittings, surfaces, cabinetry.

Realize upfront that no matter how meticulous you are with your budget planning, there will be incidentals, so bump another 20% on the budget.  Have contractors and suppliers provide estimates and quotes to help you determine your budget. These estimates need to be broken down and include the supplies, a timeline, and building permit expenses. A dream bathroom can cost as little as $5,000 and up to $10,000 or more. 

2. Demolition

With the “business” part of your bathroom remodeling out of the way, the demolition can begin. Depending on the size of the bathroom and how much of it you’re remodeling, this can day up to 2 full days.

This is going to be dusty and loud, and that dust will make its way through the house. Wear gloves, ear plugs, and safety eyewear, and consider renting a roll-off dumpster for the debris. 

Remove the vanity, sink, toilet, shower, tub, and any tile. Take precautions not to rip out electrical, plumbing, or metal ducts. Any thing you’ll be reusing like the toilet or tub, cover them with furniture blankets. 

3. Place Special Orders  

New items for a bathroom remodeling project can be fun to shop, like the lighting and plumbing fixtures, the vanity cabinet, shower head, etc. If the stuff you want isn’t readily available, requiring special ordering, order them now. There is no bigger let down and show topper than a special order item not be delivered when you get to that point of bathroom remodeling projects. 

4. Choose the Surfaces

As you choose the surface materials for your bathroom remodeling project, be sure to choose ones that are suitable for a bathroom. This includes the floors, counters, and walls, remembering they are going to be a humidity and moisture. If a surface material isn’t made for this type of environment, it can ruin them and ruin your bathroom remodeling project.

5. The Unexpected Surprises

Bathroom remodeling projects are complex and that is for the expected and planned parts. There will always be unexpected issues and problems popping up because you don’t know what to expect when you remove the vanity or take up the old flooring cover. 

6. Avoid Any Change Order

Just like special order items not arriving in time, a change order can be a showstopper, a budget buster, or timeframe extender. Avoid change orders if at all possible, any sentence that starts with “While we’re doing this ….”, shut it down. Some things can’t be avoided, like meeting code compliance, but if any possible way to avoid a change order, should be avoided. 

7. A Safe Bathroom

Have grab bars installed with your bathroom modeling. They aren’t the ugly styles of yesteryear anymore. In fact, they are stylish today in several finishes that will match any bathroom décor you have planned. 

8. Storage

A bathroom remodeling project is when you need to address any storage issues. The more people that share the bathroom, the more storage space  you need. If your remodeling project includes enlarging the overall size, add a full size linen closet. If there is space, replace the one-sink vanity with a double-sink and you get not just an extra sink, but extra storage space too. Instead of a mirrored wall, go with mirrored cabinetry for the storage space.  

9. Light It Up

With a bathroom remodeling project, now is the time to improve the lighting along with the storage. You want your bathroom to be attractive, functional, and welcoming. More lighting will make it safer by installing ambient lighting and task lighting.  Flush mount on the ceiling will illuminate the entire bathroom. Task lighting over the sinks for hair, make-up, and shaving tasks. 

10. The Ventilation 

There isn’t any room in your home that needs effective ventilation more than the bathroom and a bathroom remodeling is when you need to address that issue.  A ceiling-mounted vent fan or a combo set is the best way to let the odor and steam out. This will keep the floor safe too because it will pull the condensation out of the room. 

How long does a bathroom renovation take?

Remember how we said to expect the unexpected for budget purpose? Well that goes for timeline purpose too. Those unexpected and unforeseen things delay a bathroom remodeling project, but it happens. It may not happen with every bathroom remodeling project, but it is better to expect the unexpected and not be surprised. An average time frame for a total remodeling a  small bathroom remodel can be between 20 to 23 days, or four to five weeks. 

Can I renovate my bathroom myself?

You can do your  own bathroom remodeling or renovation if you have basic and necessary expertise and tools. On the surface, a bathroom remodeling may not seem to be that hard, but it gets more involved when it comes to the electrical and plumbing matters. Many cities are going to require an inspection before they put their approval on the job, so going with a professional may be the better option. 

remodeled bathroom

What remodel adds the most value?

 If you’re looking at renovations and remodeling that will bring you more value when you sell your home, you need to choose the areas and room that are the money makers. Here is a list of areas and rooms that any remodeling will get you the most ROI value:

  1. Outdoor Structures – deck, patio, porch, outdoor kitchen
  2. A Full Bathroom Remodeling
  3. New Windows
  4. Increase Attic Insulation
  5. New Roof
  6. New Technology
  7. Finished Basement
  8. Complete Kitchen Remodeling

Is it worth it to remodel a bathroom, can a bathroom remodeling project be that much value-add that will get you’re an ROI that is satisfactory? Absolutely!  Homeowners spend an average, of $20,000 for a midsize bathroom remodeling or renovation project and they can see just over 67% of that back. For a full-size, upscale bathroom remodeling or renovation project can cost close to $65,000, homeowner sees a 60% back. Want to get started on a bathroom remodel in Fort Worth, TX? Call Molberg Plumbing LLC at (817) 475-2800 today!

What is a shut off valve?

shut off valve

Where is the water shut off valve?

Wherever there is plumbing, in a business, public building, or a home, there is a shut off valve. A water shutoff valve  controls the flow of water to plumbing fixtures like the faucets, shower, toilet, tubs, washing machine, or any type of plumbing fixture. 

A shut off valve will be found under the sink and the toilet tank, and for a bathtub or shower, it is inside an access panel located in the wall. A shut off valve has a handle and that is how you turn the water off and on  to the connected inlet water pipe that is connected to the other end. A plumbing contractor may refer to this as either a shut off valve or ball valve, they are the same thing. 

What are the different types of shut off valves?

As you own a home, you’ll experience many things with the electrical and the plumbing. When you come across an older water shut off valve, you will find there are several choices to choose a replacement. 

There is an angled version and straight version of shut off valves. There is the multi-turn and quarter turn options in the valve with a variety of water supply line options to be considered.  The following is a list of the most common shut off valves used in a home.   

  • Compression Fit Stop Valve: This shut off valve comes in multi-turn and quarter turn and is used with water supply lines made of copper or PEX. 
  • Sweat Fitting Stop Valves: This shut off valve is designed to connect to copper water line and be non-leak, non-removable. 
  • Push Fit Stop Valve: This shut off valve is a new technology that is easy to install and offers versatility. 
  • Female Iron Pipe Threaded Fitting Shutoff Valve: FIP, short for female iron pipe is a shut off valve that is used with galvanized water lines that are threaded and requires pipe thread compound, then screws on and off. 
  • Barbed Fitting Stop Valve: This shut off valve is used with PEX water lines and can be used with a compression fitting.

Can a shut off valve fail?

Shut off valves are a low maintenance part of plumbing in a home, but like anything, they get old and worn.  The failure that is most common older shut off valves is they seize up and can’t be moved. When this happens, they cannot be turned by hand, which jeopardizes the purpose of shut off valves.

Another failure that is common with shut off valves is the rubber stop or seal that is located within the valve have deteriorated. If a shut off valve is leaking, this is usually the cause. 

How do you fix a shut off valve?

If you have a leaking water shut off valve or your water shut off valve is stripped, the following are steps to take to repair the faulty shut off valve: 

  1. Turn the water off to the house at the meter.
  2. With a screwdriver, pull the shut off valve handle off.
  3. Using a wrench, loosen the gland nut located on the back side of the handle.
  4. Unscrew the handle and remove the valve part of the shut off valve.
  5. Take the new valve from the repair kit and screw it in place. 
  6. With the wrench, tighten the gland nut back, careful not to overtighten.
  7. Using the screwdriver, put the shut off valve handle back on.
  8. Turn the water back on at the meter.

Are water shut off valves required?

Currently, there isn’t any federal law stating water shut off valves are required. You should check local zoning laws and building ordinance. Depending on where you live and what type of structure you live, a shut off valve may be required at every water operating appliance. This would mean a water shut off is at every shower, sink, toilet, tub, dishwasher, washing machine, etc. It may be required to have both cold and hot water shut off valve.  

dirty pipe with shut off valve

Is it possible to repair a shut off valve without shutting off water?

The shut-off valves in houses are referred to as gate valves, a simple mechanism. There is a handle or wheel that causes a gate to lower or raise according to the water flow. An inexpensive and reliable component, until they fail. 

However, the joint in the middle of the valve body and the valve stem are vulnerable in gate valves because of the  rotating stem and valve body allow water to escape around the stem. Manufacturers of shut off valves created a solution that placed a waterproof barrier between the two parts referenced as a packing gland. It is typically made of grease fibers, leather, rubber, or some other material. 

Over time, that material breaks down or hardens, and sometimes too high of water pressure will push it out of place. Either of these will allow the shut off valve to start leaking. To fix the shut off valve without shutting off the water, follow these steps:  

  1. Dry the area around and the valve. 
  2. Close the valve shut and take off the valve handle. 
  3. Remove the packing gland’s follower.
  4. Wrap the packing gland and stem with plumber’s tape.
  5. Replace the gland follower and stem handle.
  6. Test the shut off valve.

If you move into a home that doesn’t have a water shut off valve at each water operated fixture, take the time and expense to install one yourself or have a plumber do the work. Either way, should you ever experience a water emergency, and you will, that water shut off valve will be your best friend and saving grace. Call (817) 475-2800 today for shut off valve repair in Fort Worth, TX.

Should You Do a Sewer Scope Inspection?

sewer inspection camera

Should You Do a Sewer Scope Inspection?

Sewer camera inspections are quite essential when you are experiencing significant plumbing problems and need to get to the bottom of the issue. The reason why you should consider a sewer scope inspection is if you are in the process of buying a home and the home itself is over twenty years old. You will want the plumbing system thoroughly reviewed so that you won’t have to pay any costly fees later for sewer line repair or any other related plumbing services.

Who Makes the Best Sewer Camera?

There are a number of lovely camera manufacturers in the industry. Because this is the case, there are different sewer camera models on the market. If you would like to review these models, please read on in the bullet-pointed list below.

  • The Mophorn – 30 m / 100 ft. – Nine inch.
  • Aukfa – 30 m / 100 ft. – Seven inch.
  • L-Limink – 15 m / 49.2 ft. – Smartphone
  • Teslong – 5 m / 16.4 ft. – 4.3 inch

How Does a Sewer Camera Work?

Are you wondering how a sewer camera works? It’s actually a very exciting topic. A sewer camera is a small, flexible camera that is attached to a cable. This cable is very similar to a drain snake. The plumber will utilize the snake to get to the point where a clog or break exists in the plumbing or sewer line. This process was created with the hope of fixing plumbing problems without having to remove walls or attempt invasive activities. It’s actually become recognized across the country and is very popular because the process is so effective.

How Do You Tell if Your Sewer Line Is Broken?

Are you wondering if your sewer line is broken? If so, it will be essential for you to review the warning signs of a broken sewer line. For instance, if you have sewage backups and blockages, it could spell a certain disaster. Likewise, if you smell a sewer gas odor, have mold problems, and have slow drains, it’s important to call a plumber as soon as possible. Outdoors, you may see signs like an extra green lawn and lush patches in the grass. Moreover, if you have foundation cracks, settlement, and sinkholes, these could also be warning signs.

How Much Does it Cost to Have a Plumber Snake Your Pipes?

Are you wondering how much it costs to have a plumber snake your pipes? If so, it stands to reason that this amount will change based on where you live. The cost will also change depending on which plumbing team you call. In order to understand more, please be certain to call a plumbing company directly.

Sewer Inspection Cameras

Sewer inspection cameras have come a long way since they were first used by plumbers. If you are interested in sewer cameras, you should understand that plumbers choose the make and model of the camera they eventually settle on by a couple of vital factors. For instance, if a camera has crystal-clear imaging properties, it will certainly be considered an asset. A good sewer camera can also be used in different settings. For example, if you need a camera to inspect an air duct, a chimney, a gas vent, or anything in between, a sewer inspection camera is certainly a great tool. 

What is Sewer Camera Inspection

It is difficult to know exactly what is happening within the bowels of your plumbing system without a sewer camera inspection. Sewer camera inspections are a fabulous trick of the trade due to the fact that before they were invented, plumbing problems could be very tricky, very expensive, and very invasive.

Sewer Inspection Camera for Sale

Due to the fact that there are a plethora of wonderful sewer cameras for sale, it’s important to review which sewer camera will be best for your purposes. As mentioned previously, there are many good models on the market. The price ranges for such sewer cameras vary greatly. The prices will be dependent upon the scope of the equipment, and the clarity and precision of the camera.

sewer inspection camera

Sewer Inspection with Camera

There are a number of different questions that can arise when you need a sewer camera inspection. How bad is the sewer issue? What is the root of the issue? According to leading experts in the industry, one of the chief problems to be aware of is the appearance of tree roots. Once a tree root has found its way into a sewer line, the problem rarely ends there. It’s always best to secure an appointment with a professional plumbing company if there are any extenuating issues with your pipes.

When you have a plumbing problem and need a sewer inspection camera in Fort Worth, TX, you can always reach out to us at (817) 475-2800. Our courteous team is available to help you today.

Gas Leak What To Do

detail of a residential gas pipe against a red brick wall

Learn More About a Gas Leak

A gas leak can be a dangerous situation to navigate with your property so it’s important to know what to do. Essentially a gas leak will give off significant cues such as the smell of rotten eggs or sulfur or causing fatigue, headaches, and other symptoms. In order to protect the health of those around you it’s best to have a fool proof method to detect a gas leak in case any unexpected issues arise in the future. There are many things that may be helpful to know regarding a gas leak so read on to understand a bit more about them. Speaking to a local plumbing company may also be useful in learning more, until then here is some general background information that can prove helpful.

Can a gas leak in your house kill you?

Inhaling a high concentration of gas from a gas leak can lead to asphyxia; when your body is deprived of oxygen. With more carbon monoxide in the air and less oxygen this can potentially kill you. Common symptoms of asphyxia are feeling of chest pain and fatigue.

Is a small gas leak dangerous?

A gas leak can be dangerous because natural gas is flammable so if there’s a flame or spark in the area of the leak a fire or explosion is possible. Have a professional make sure that gas pipe fittings aren’t loose or the gas pipe isn’t damaged to avoid this trouble.

Is it normal to smell a little natural gas?

It’s ok to have a faint smell of natural gas present when you use your stove or the pilot light for one of your appliances goes out. At any other time it may be that something is wrong. Call a professional for guidance. 

Should you open windows if you smell gas?

With a natural gas leak, states and gas companies do not recommend opening windows and advise to just exit the vicinity of the area.

gas pressure gauge reading

What are the signs of a gas leak in your home? 

  • The smell of sulfur or rotten eggs.
  • A hissing or whistling sound near a gas line.
  • A white cloud or dust cloud near a gas line.
  • Bubbles in water.
  • A damaged gas pipe.
  • Dead houseplants.

What do I do if I smell gas?

If you smell a gas leak leave the home or building without activating or turning off any electrical devices or outlets. Even turning off a light or using your phone can be an issue. Leave the doors open as you exit each room to allow for more ventilation. After going a safe distance from the area call your emergency response number and 911 to notify police and fire officials of the leak. Also call your gas company to fix the pipe. Warn others in the area to stay away until the issue has been resolved.

How long should I air out my house after gas leak?

After a gas leak-NOT DURING-you’ll need to allow your house to ventilate for a few hours to make sure that gas has escaped. With a faint smell of gas opening a few windows or doors from your kitchen can be useful yet if the gas from the kitchen has spread to multiple rooms in the house opening all of exterior doors and windows can help. Follow the instruction of the gas company after their repairs to see what should be done.

Is there a device to detect gas leaks?

There are many different devices available to detect a gas leak. It’s important to get a device that’s specifically designed to detect even small gas leaks. A built-in processor may be able to detect natural gas, bhutane, liquid propane and methane gasses. Some may give audible alarm signals, visual cues such as red and yellow lights illuminating to indicate the amount of gas detected, automatic gas shut off triggers, and more. 

Will a carbon monoxide detector detect a gas leak?

Leak detectors which hold the title of only one name will typically only detect that one thing. A carbon monoxide detector for example will only be able to detect carbon monoxide and not be able to detect a natural gas leak. What’s more carbon monoxide is very different from methane and that too won’t be able to be detected from the same sensor in that device. Your best bet would be to get a gas leak detector that is able to detect multiple forms of gas from carbon monoxide, propane, methane, natural gas and more. 

Where do you put a gas leak detector?

A gas leak detector can be installed for a wall or flush mounting between .30 to 4 meters from the gas fired appliance. Don’t install the gas leak detector near any hobs, extractor fans, vents or sinks. Some gas leak detectors are also installed on the gas pipe valve for emergency shut off activation when readings are too high. This type of model should only be activated by a professional as required by law and for the safety of occupants since handling a gas pipe can be dangerous. Depending on the model and type of gas leak detector you purchase instructions will be clear. 

Get Professional Assistance With a Gas Leak

A gas leak can be confusing to detect on your own. To save time and energy gas leak detection devices may be the difference in time  that you need to save your life if something is the matter. Gas leak detection can be done by professionals even if you don’t have a device and the area of the leak can be pinpointed so that repairs can be made to the gas line. Call your local plumber today to get the assistance you need for a gas leak or to install a gas leak detector. 

Get help with a gas leak in Fort Worth, TX by calling (817) 475-2800 with Molberg Plumbing LLC today! 

Is a Tankless Water Heater Worth It?

A Tankless Water Heater Installed on a Wall.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of a tankless water heater?

Thinking about installing a tankless water heater in your home? If so, you’ve heard tankless systems produce hot water on demand and you’ll never run out of hot water. Unlimited hot water probably generated your interest in tankless systems. These are all good reasons to invest in a tankless system. But, is a tankless system really worth it? Are all the things said about them true. Before you choose one, you need to weigh their advantages and disadvantages. Make sure they fit your needs and your budget.

Advantages

  • Produces instant hot water: Delivers its supply of hot water almost instantly after all cold water is flushed from pipes, so the hot water never runs out.
  • Lasts longer and have longer warranties: Standard tank systems last about 10 years. A tankless system lasts about twice that time. Warranties usually extend to 20 years.
  • Lowers monthly costs: These systems are 22% more efficient than tank systems and reduce your monthly utility costs. This will add up to long-term savings.
  • Saves on space: The smaller units require little space and can be installed almost anywhere, even on walls. 
  • Qualifies for tax credits: Installation costs are offset by federal tax credits.

Disadvantages

  • Temperatures are not consistent: While hot water comes out instantly, the temperature isn’t always consistent.
  • High installation costs: Tankless systems cost more to install initially. Added expenses like gas line rerouting or equipment like water softeners might cause installation costs to go up.
  • High demand can overwhelm the system: When there is heavy demand, especially larger households, the system can be overwhelmed and not work as efficiently. These systems work best with moderate demand and in smaller homes.

If you are interested in Tankless water heater installation in Fort Worth, TX, you can always rely on the experts at Molberg Plumbing LLC. Reach out to us at (817) 475-2800 to find out how we can help meet all your plumbing needs.

Which is better hot water heater or tankless?

Both standard tank and tankless water heaters have their pros and cons. Your household’s demand for hot water tends to be the determining factor in selecting one over the other. Typically, if you are using 41 gallons or less of hot water each day, a tankless system is probably a good choice to make, especially if you have a smaller home with limited space. In this case, a tankless system can save you anywhere from 22% to 34% on utility costs. Of course, with newer energy-efficient tank systems like high-recovery water heaters, when you have high demand, you can get just as many benefits as from a tankless system. Tankless systems are also useful as supplementary resources of hot water.

Are tankless water heaters more efficient?

Generally, tankless water heaters are more efficient than standard tank water heaters. That efficiency can be lost, however, when there is high demand. In fact, a tankless system can get overwhelmed when demand is heavy. There are also several types of high-efficiency tank water heaters on the market today that run just as efficiently as tankless. 

What tankless water heater do I need?

Like regular water heaters, tankless water heaters come in various sizes. The type you’ll need will primarily depend on the size of your household and how much hot water is used. You can usually check the rate of gallons per minute (GPM) on a unit to determine if it is right for you. Most tankless systems produce around 2 GPM to 12 GPM and average households typically require anywhere from 5 GPM to 10 GPM to meet demands. Smaller tankless units are sometimes installed as a way to supplement the tank’s supply.  

Where is tankless water heater installed?

Because of their small size, tankless water heaters can be installed almost anywhere, although the closer they are to the appliances or faucets they are supplying, the more efficient they will be. Tankless units are often installed on walls near those appliances or faucets. Gas units also need to be close to areas where they are vented sufficiently. Can a tankless water heater be installed outside? Both gas and electric units can be installed outside. Some gas units are specifically designed to be installed outside to meet ventilation requirements. Electric units or gas units not specifically made for outside use will need some kind of shelter or covering to protect them from the elements.

Can you run out of hot water with a tankless water heater?

Technically, no, a tankless water heater doesn’t run out of hot water, because there is no supply in a tank being heated. The water is heated as needed. You can, however, have instances when the hot water gets cold. You might, for example, get a splash of cold water from your shower when you first turn on the hot water. This is just leftover cold water in the pipes. It’s rarely a cause for alarm. Moreover, when demand is high on a tankless system, the unit can get overwhelmed. This can happen when more than one tap or appliance is in use at the same time. 

Can a tankless water heater fill a tub?

If you’ve been looking forward to a hot bath all day and you’re ready to fill your tub from your tankless water heater, you may be waiting longer than expected for your bath. This all depends on the size of the tankless unit and the tub. The smaller the unit, the longer it will take to fill a large tub. 

A Small Tankless Water Heater Next to a Shower.

Call Us Today

When you are looking to install a tankless water heater in Fort Worth, TX, you can always count on the expertise of Molberg Plumbing LLC. We offer a full range of plumbing services including water heater installation. Book a service call today at (817) 475-2800.

What to do if you Have a Slab Leak?

slab leak

How do you Stop Slab Leaks?

Slab leaks are one of the most destructive damages to a home that can cause irreversible harm to the home if left to build up. The immediate reaction you should have when discovering a slab leak is calling your local plumber, like those at Molberg Plumbing LLC to get it taken care of. The issue that comes with a slab leak is that homeowners tend to not be capable of making any physical solution, only minimizing it until a professional can take care of it. Measures of that can include:

  • Pay attention to your water usage
  • Shut down any systems that you do not require
  • DO NOT flush your system with cleaning chemicals

A responsible homeowner has no capability in preventing a slab leak occurring to their home. This is because the general cause is often credited to erosion, problematic installation, or weak materials. However, while two of the three causes are possible, shifting earth is the most common culprit that busts a pipe. Especially in the great state of Texas, the soil is not exactly in a state of constant stability. When it comes to your home, you can trust our professionals to get you emergency slab leak repair thanks to our staff in Fort Worth, TX. You need repairs as fast as possible when it comes to a slab leak, urgent repairs and heavy equipment are both what we can bring along with our hard-earned experience. Call (817) 475-2800 today to speak with a representative.

What are the Symptoms of a Slab Leak?

There are several signs a homeowner can catch that will indicate a slab leak is happening under their home. While it does not necessarily have to be a full-on gushing water event, a leak in a pipe can be destructive wherever it happens on the property. To note, most plumbers offer a way to detect pipe leaks and weak spots in the home through tools we implement to scan through the system. However, if you are relying on your own means then some signs you should be on the lookout for include:

  • Irregular water meter
  • Rising water bill
  • Puddling water
  • Warmer or hot floors
  • Running water can be heard

As mentioned, slab leaks do not necessarily mean that there is gushing water somewhere under your home. However, they can get to be that way depending on the damages that occur over time. When a homeowner by some measure suspects they have a leak in their piping, they should not hesitate in using their plumbing company to check their system. Molberg Plumbing LLC is more than capable of finding a slab leak and repairing in a quick manner. We understand the extent that a slab leak can bring to a home, that is why our plumbers are highly trained and ready for your call.

Is a Slab Leak Dangerous?

When left alone to grow and cause more damage, a slab leak or any other leak for that matter has the capability to rise through the flooring. It can flood your home and create extensive damages throughout your property. On occasion, this may also be a sign of inadequate drainage, whether it is due to a leak or a heavy storm. Your foundation can face significant damage if you do not immediately address the leak when it is discovered. In parts of Texas, floods are absolutely possible, Fort Worth, TX has seen its share of heavy rainfall. 

The dangers of ignoring a slab leak cannot be understated as they can cripple your home and open you up to possible injury. Particularly because the leak can shift the earth underneath your home and then can cause your home to be on unstable ground. Fortunately, when you discover the leak, you may be covered by homeowner’s insurance. To be doubly sure, check over your insurance policy today to check and see if you are able to better handle a slab leak.

slab leak repair

What damage can a slab leak cause?

Aside from creating unstable ground underneath your home, there are multiple more damages that a slab leak can cause. Due to the leaked water being able to seep through your floor and enter into your home from the underside, you will see related damages like: 

  • Flooded carpets
  • Waterlogged boards
  • Devastated furniture
  • Further damage to the foundation
  • The raising of your home or yard

Further than that, a homeowner may have to worry about an eventual sinkhole formation if they make no attempt in fixing the damages caused by a slab leak. That is why when you notice one, you must reach out to your local plumber for them to get the process started and make repairs to your home. Molberg Plumbing LLC is the perfect team you can contact when searching for plumbers in and around Fort Worth, TX. We can get there fast and make repairs to help your home so we can prevent any further damage. Generally, the process takes two days, so call (817) 475-2800 now to get your home the attention it needs.

Why is My Pipe Leaking?

A pipe leaking due to freezing

Learn More About Leaking Pipes

There are many instances where an emergency plumbing situation will occur, most often then not they will have to do with leaking pipes. Leaking pipes can be particularly confusing to handle as oftentimes plumbing pipes are behind walls or underground so until visual cues enter like mold, mildew, and sagging areas most don’t know that a leak is there until it’s too late. With plumbing tools and technology there are ways to track down leaks so all is not lost in making the necessary repairs and replacements if they are needed. It’s essential to call your local plumber if you notice something is amiss with your home as catching the problem when it’s at it’s beginning stages can prevent future issues from arising. Here is some general information concerning leaking pipes that may prove useful to you.

What causes pipes to leak?

Leaking pipes can occur from a wide variety of reasons from high water pressure, root invasion, physical impacts, and more. With high water pressure, you run an increased risk of pipes bursting as inner pipes can corrode and wear resulting in leaks. Root invasion will occur when tree roots grow near porous piping materials or can be powerful enough to loosen pipe connections. A common concern with leaking pipes is with impacts that cause punctures or movement with the piping system enough to cause an opening for leaks. Other causes with leaking pipes can include rust, slab/foundation movement, and temperature changes.

How do I know if a pipe is leaking?

There are many signs that can point towards water waste with leaking pipes. One such method is with seeing very high water bills as water is being lost more than normal. Another is to see mold or mildew growth on the walls from access moisture. If you see water stains, warping, bubbling, or sagging on walls or floors this can also point to water abnormal accumulation. Musty smells are also a huge sign as old water will give off this perfume.

How can you tell where a water leak is coming from?

With leaking pipes, you’ll want to check your water meter to see if there are any leaks by seeing if the leak indicator is moving; if it is there is a leak in your pipes. For this test make sure that no water is running inside or outside your home. (The meter itself should be a small triangular shaped dial or small silver wheel that rotates when water is flowing through the meter.) You may also see the meter reading and see after 1 or 2 hours the reading has changed which indicates a leak. This test too requires the water to be turned off at all locations.

Is there a tool to detect water leak?

There are tools to detect leaking pipes with professional sound detection equipment. This will use a microphone and headphones to detect the sound of water running through pipes. Other types of equipment will use echolocation to determine the area where the leak has most likely taken place.

How do I stop a leaking pipe?

Leaking pipes can be fixed if there is misalignment and fittings need to be tightened. {Tighten compression fittings with two wrenches to crimp the ferrule into the pipe.) For tiny pipe leaks, a compound stick can be rubbed over the hole to stop the leak. With epoxy paste, the water will need to be turned off and pipe dry before application.

Will a small water leak seal itself?

With small leaking pipes over time, it can grow into bigger issues if left unaddressed. You can create a temporary seal around the pipe with epoxy or plumbers putty yet various factors can cause the hole to become larger causing additional pipe damages. 

Will plumbers putty stop a leak?

Leaking pipes can be fixed by plumber’s putty only if leaks are in specific areas. For other leaks, you may need an alternate solution. (This item and be used interchangeably with other products such as tape or caulk.)

Leakage Of Water From Stainless Steel Pipe On Gray Background

What is the best sealant for leaking pipes?

  • Rust-Oleum 265495 LeakSeal Flexible Rubber Coating Spray, 11 oz, Clear
  • Rust-Oleum 275116 LeakSeal Flexible Rubber Coating, 30 oz, Crystal Clear
  • Flex Seal Spray Rubber Sealant Coating, 14-oz, White/Clear
  • Loctite 1716864 Tube Plumber and Marine Adhesive

What do plumbers use to seal joints?

Leaking pipes coming from joints can be sealed with a pipe jointing compound, aka pipe dope, which is a type of sealant used on threaded pipes. It consists of a mix of certain substances such as clay, kaolin, rosin, vegetable oil, and ethanol. This type of seal can also be used as a lubricant for pipe joints. 

Does homeowners insurance cover water damage leaking plumbing?

Homeowners insurance covers leaking pipes if they were brought on by an accident or happened suddenly like with a washing machine supply hose breaking suddenly. If they were brought on by poor maintenance than it won’t be covered. 

Contact A Professional Plumber 

If you’re concerned that you may have leaking pipes get in touch with your local plumbing company so quality repairs can be made. They’ll be able to properly track down the location of the leak and offer you insight on what options you have for repairs or replacements. Ensure that the flow of your water is running smoothly and the conditions of your plumbing materials are in good order. Your local plumber is there to help you out.

If you need help with leaking pipes in Fort Worth, TX call (817) 475-2800 with Molberg Plumbing LLC!