SPS Mechanical Inc. Blog : Archive for January, 2013

Benefits of Installing a Whole-Home Humidifier

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Are you tired of dealing with dry skin and sinuses during the winter in your home in Woolwich Township? A whole-home humidifier could help alleviate some of these symptoms and improve indoor air quality. In the winter when the heater can dry out the air inside your home, having proper moisture control is essential. While a room humidifier only works in a certain area of your home, a whole-home humidifier works with your heating system to add moisture to your entire home. Here are some benefits of installing a whole-home humidifier to help you decide which one is right for you.

When the air is too dry inside the home, it can feel colder, which causes many homeowners to turn the thermostat up higher than necessary in the winter. In addition, the heater in the winter can sometimes dry out the air excessively, and worsen issues related to poor indoor air quality issues. If you have severe dry skin, sinus problems, and other respiratory issues, you may want to consider some type of whole-home humidifier.

Air that is too dry can also damage wood furnishings and floors, along with carpets, rugs, paintings, and other valuable items. Many people think that because room humidifiers are cheaper, they are the better choice and can do the trick just as well; however, this is not always the case. Room humidifiers can cause your heating and cooling system to work harder if there are not certain moisture control settings. Whole home humidifiers are sensitive pieces of equipment that can maintain the right amount of humidity in the home.

Another benefit is that proper moisture control can reduce the chances of mold or mildew growth inside your home. Compared to room humidifiers, whole-house systems add much more controlled amounts of moisture. They also are designed to work with many types of heating systems, including heat pumps, radiant heating, and much more.

Call the Woolwich Township heating experts at SPS Mechanical if you have further questions. We can help you select the right whole-home humidifier for your home and needs.

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Plumber’s Tip: Types of Water Treatment Systems

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Here at SPS Mechanical, we get a lot of questions from customers in the Sewell, NJ area about water treatment systems. If you are thinking about which water treatment system is right for your home, call us. We can go over the different types of systems that we can install for you to find which one is right for your home.

Here are a few of the water treatment systems available:

  • Whole home water filtration systems – With a whole home water filtration system, you get more protection than just using a faucet filter. If you have hard water, this could be a good option for your since it can protect all of your water pipes from mineral build-up, such as magnesium and calcium build-up.
  • Reverse osmosis – A whole–house reverse osmosis system targets many of the more common contaminants found in our area. These systems only require a small amount of basic maintenance, and they can provide you with pure drinking water right out of your tap!
  • Chemical feed pumps – Chemical feed pumps work by using salts and minerals to remove arsenic, calcium, iron, sulfur, and other contaminants in your fresh water supply. These systems also neutralize acidic water, and they are safe and cost-effective.

Get the clean, pure water in your home that you deserve. Not only do contaminants in your water supply cause build-ups and plumbing problems, but they also cause strong odors and a bad taste, which can be harmful to your health depending on what’s in your water. When minerals build up in your plumbing system, it can make everyday tasks, such as washing clothes or dishes, difficult to complete.

Don’t hesitate to call SPS Mechanical if you would like to speak with one of our Sewell, NJ plumbers about the water treatment system that’s right for your needs.

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Plumbing Tip: What to Do in a Plumbing Emergency

Monday, January 21st, 2013

We’ve all been there. The toilet is backing up or you have waste water flooding into your basement from a drain pipe in the ceiling, and you aren’t sure what to do. There are a few things you can do to help prevent further damage to your Woolwich Township home or plumbing system. Here are some common plumbing emergencies and what to do if they happen to you.

Water Line Break

How do you know if you have a water line break? One of the first signs of trouble with your water line is a drop in pressure. Washing machines and tubs take longer to fill; sinks and toilets don’t seem to function the way they normally do. Other signs of trouble are pools of water or saturated areas in your yard that never seem to dry up. A wet spot around your slab or basement could also indicate water leaking from your main line.

Unlike water leaks inside your home, leaks in the main water line can be difficult to spot. For inside leaks, the water meter will spin even when all the sinks and other plumbed appliances are off. There will be no sound of running water or puddles under the sink or on the floor. If the water line break occurs in your home, call a Woolwich Township plumber, but you can turn off the water supply to your home to prevent flooding.

Broken Sewer Line

A broken or damaged sewer line would cause waste water and sewage to leech out into the soil beneath your property. The water would gradually rise to the surface, creating puddles or patches of unexplained dampness. A foul, sewage odor would probably be noticeable. If raw sewage works its way to the surface, it will attract flies. Waste water flowing underground can also cause a sinkhole to form. Depending on the contours of your yard and other factors, the water might flow to the boundary of your property before it becomes noticeable.

Another sign might be slow or uneven drainage of your sinks, toilets, and other appliances. Water may empty down the drain fast, and then back up or gurgle.

If you observe any signs of a possible sewer line break in your Woolwich Township area home, don’t flush toilets, use the shower, or other drains and call SPS Mechanical right away. A broken sewer line must be repaired immediately, and it must be done according to accepted standards and local codes.

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Gas Furnace Safety Tips

Monday, January 14th, 2013

For residents living in Woolwich Township, gas furnace safety is something every homeowner should be aware of during the winter. With a few tips, you can reduce the chances of hazardous situations. Don’t hesitate to call the technicians at SPS Mechanical any time you need a furnace repair or routine maintenance visit.

Regular maintenance is one of the best ways to make sure your gas furnace is working safely. It’s also important to make sure that the general area around the furnace is clean to avoid fire hazards. This could make a world of difference with just a few extra hours of work each year.

Here’s a basic gas furnace safety guideline:

Ventilation:

  • Make sure there’s no airflow restriction by regularly cleaning the fan blower and other components.
  • Check the condition of your ventilation system to ensure that there are no obvious signs of damage or that there’s nothing blocking airflow.
  • Change air filters as often as necessary.

Routine Maintenance:

  • A routine maintenance visit is essential to preventing carbon monoxide leaks and other issues with the heat exchanger and other components. Furnaces should be inspected by a professional contractor annually to ensure that everything is working safely.
  • For gas furnaces, make sure the pilot light in gas furnaces is burning properly and on at all times, even when it is not in use. This is for safety purposes and efficiency. Call a technician if you are having problems with your burner.
  • Annual maintenance should also include a professional inspection and cleaning of ductwork and ventilation systems.

Carbon Monoxide Detectors:

  • Make sure you have a carbon monoxide detector in your home if you have any gas appliances, especially gas furnaces and boilers.
  • Test the carbon monoxide detector and smoke alarms often.
  • Make sure your CO detector is up to code, or ask a technician if you aren’t sure.

Call the Woolwich Township gas furnace specialists at SPS Mechanical today for more safety tips or to schedule a routine maintenance appointment with one of our qualified technicians.

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Plumbing Tip: Common Plumbing Noises and What to Do About Them

Monday, January 7th, 2013

Here at SPS Mechanical, we get a lot of phone calls from our Woodbury, NJ area customers about plumbing noises. There are many plumbing noises that are not cause for alarm and can be taken care of with a few simple steps.

The three main plumbing noise complaints that we get are, water hammer, whistling pipes, and creaking pipes. This post explains the potential cause and repair for each.

Water Hammer

Water hammer is a loud banging noise that is caused by abruptly turning off the water. This usually happens because there’s a leaky air cushioning in the pipe. This is an easy fix for a Woodbury, NJ plumber. An air chamber valve can be installed so that when the water is turned off, the valve closes and compresses the air. This slows the water down gradually so that there’s no hammering noise.

While it may seem like a minor issue, water hammering noises that are left unattended can eventually lead to water leaks and deterioration of the piping material. If you hear more of a chattering or rattling noise, there may be a loose pipe rubbing against another pipe or other metal objects. Call a professional plumbing contractor if you hear any hammering or rattling noises in your pipes.

Whistling Pipes

Both water hammering and whistling noises are caused by the momentum of the water flowing through a pipe that is too small to handle a large volume of water. Attaching a pressure reducing valve will eliminate both noises and help with other issues in the plumbing system as well. Whistling could also be caused by sediment buildup, so you may need a drain cleaning service.

Creaking Pipes

Another common noise that is often reported in homes is a creaking sound in walls or floors. This is caused by the expansion and contraction of hot water pipes. When hot water flows through the pipe, the pipe expands to some degree, and when the hot water is turned off, the pipe cools and contracts. This accounts for the creaking noise often heard by homeowners. A plumber can insulate the pipe or make a space in the surrounding building material, such as cutting a notch in the wood, to allow for the expansion of the pipe.

If you have questions or hear any of these noises, call a Woodbury, NJ area plumber at SPS Mechanical. We’ll diagnose the issue and have it fixed in no time. We are always happy to answer any plumbing questions, so call any time.

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