SPS Mechanical Inc. Blog: Archive for October, 2013

How to Keep Your Plumbing Functioning Effectively

Monday, October 28th, 2013

The flow of water into your home and the removal of waste from it are necessary for clean and healthy living. However, people often take for granted the complex plumbing that allows this process. If you don’t take care of your plumbing system, it can fail you at the most inconvenient times, leaving you without working showers, sinks, and toilets.

Here are some tips to follow that will help you keep your plumbing in good shape so that it functions effectively for you. If you do need repairs, count on the West Deptford, NJ plumbing professionals at SPS Mechanical. Call us any time: we have 24-hour emergency services.

  • Don’t put garbage or pour grease/cooking oil/fat down your drains: It’s a common error we see homeowners make all the time: thinking the drains in their sinks act like disposals, and anything thrown into them just vanishes. Kitchen sink disposals are designed to handle larger food items, but your standard sink drains aren’t, and their p-traps can quickly clog up and block your pipes. Take particular care not to pour grease, cooking oil, or fat into your drains—even into the disposal. These substances harden and congeal when they cool, creating a thick plug in your pipes.
  • Install drain covers and screen caps in showers and sinks: Getting some hair and soap scum in drains that receive frequent use is unavoidable. But you can reduce the amount that slips into the drains and help prevent clogs with the simple precaution of putting inexpensive covers and screens over these drains.
  • Insulate your pipes: This is important in any location that experiences below-freezing weather during winter. Pipes that freeze will not only stop flow, they will be in danger of cracking or bursting. Get foam pipe insulation to protect them. Better yet, call a professional to do the job to insure that it gets done right.
  • Hire professionals to handle most repairs: A plunger and a bottle of drain cleaner can solve some small troubles with your pipes, but anything worse you should leave to a trained plumber. (And don’t go out and get the strongest type of drain cleaner you can find—this might damage your pipes.) Attempting to fix problems with plumbing on your own can cause further damage leading to dangerous leaks. If you want your plumbing to keep working effectively, make sure that the care it gets is the best—professional care.

For all the precautions you take, there will be times when trouble develops that is out of your control. If you have a West Deptford, NJ plumbing emergency, call SPS Mechanical and we’ll get one of our highly trained plumbers on the job.

Continue Reading

Heating Guide: Why Install Radiant Heat?

Monday, October 21st, 2013

An option for home comfort during the colder months that has started to gain popularity in New Jersey is radiant floor heating. Radiant floor heating takes the idea of using heat radiating from an object to provide warmth to a new level of comfort. Hydronic or electric heating elements installed in the floor transfer warmth directly into your home.

You’ll understand why radiant floor heating has become so popular when you look over these advantages:

  • Energy efficiency: Compared to most heating systems on the market, radiant heating uses less energy to provide a comfortable indoor temperature. There is less heat loss because of the absence of ducts and exhaust pipes, making it easier to heat your home so you won’t need to keep the heating on as long.
  • Excellent comfort: Radiant heating doesn’t just heat up your home more efficiently—it provides heat that feels better. With radiant floor heating, you’ll no longer have cold feet even while the rest of you gets warm. People with radiant heating often find they are comfortable at lower settings, which can mean less energy use.
  • Improved health: Floor heating systems do not use forced air the way that furnaces do. With forced air, there is always a risk of circulating airborne contaminants. But the warmth from radiant heat doesn’t carry the risk of spreading dust, dirt, or mold, making it ideal for homes with pets or people with allergies.
  • Quiet operation: Without fans running, radiant heating does its job almost silently.
  • Visually unobtrusive: If installed correctly, a radiant heating system is almost invisible. This not only looks pleasant and makes your home easier to decorate, it also saves floor space.

Although radiant heating offers some terrific benefits, it doesn’t work ideally for every home. It also requires extensive installation work. If you’re curious about getting a radiant floor heating system installed, you should consult an HVAC expert to inspect your home to see if the available systems are a good fit for it.

SPS Mechanical can handle the work needed to get you a quality radiant heating installation. We can take care of all your Haddonfield, NJ heating needs, so contact us today to set up an appointment.

Continue Reading

Heating Guide: How Radiant Heating Works

Monday, October 14th, 2013

You may have heard the term “radiant heat” talked about in reference to a home heating system. It’s one of two basic types of home heating, the other being “forced air” systems which push warm air throughout your home to raise the temperature. Radiant heating tends to be a more effective and cost-friendly way to keep your house cozy on a cold day. In towns like Woodbury, NJ, heating systems need to be effective in order to keep winter at bay without breaking the bank, making radiant heating an attractive option for homeowners. Here’s how radiant heating works.

It starts with the floor. A radiant heating system places a series of tubes or coils beneath the floorboards. Which one? That depends on the type of radiant heating system. Hydronic systems pump water through tubes; a furnace or boiler then heats the water to warm the tubes. In the case of electric systems, the tubes are replaced by electric coils protected within a heat-conducting mat.

Regardless of the system, the results are the same. The coils/tubes warm up the floor, which in turn warms up other objects in the room (including people). The heat is mild enough to let you walk around barefoot without pain, and it’s safe on furniture and curtains as well. Because it starts at the floor, very little of the heat escapes through the ceiling, increasing overall efficiency and lowering your heating costs as a result. Radiant heating isn’t subjected to the vagaries of air flow, allowing the whole space to be heated evenly and preventing the circulation of dust and similar particles from blowing air. Zone controls allow you to tailor a radiant heating system to heat only those areas that you want, further saving you money.

The specifics of installing a radiant system depend on the particulars of your house, but you can consult a trained professional on how radiant heating works and what version works best for you. For Woodbury, NJ heating issues, talk to SPS Mechanical. We serve all of Southern New Jersey, and our qualified experts are available 24 hours day. Call us to set up an appointment today!

Continue Reading

Reasons for Heating Repair in Haddonfield: Inconsistent Pilot Lights

Monday, October 7th, 2013

The pilot light in your gas-powered boiler or furnace may be a small flame, but it serves a big purpose. Without it, the powerful gas burner that provides you with heat won’t ignite. If your pilot light starts to go out regularly, you might end up with no heat at all. With winter coming up, it isn’t a good time to have your furnace or boiler fail.

Pilot lights do occasionally go out, even if there’s nothing wrong with your heating system: a strong air gust could do it. But if the pilot light starts to fail on a regular basis, then you should get it looked at before it goes out and won’t light again.

A common reason for an inconsistent pilot light is lack of air intake. Like any flame, the pilot light needs a steady supply of oxygen in order to burn. If the area where the pilot light and gas control are located becomes dirty, or the air intake opening gets clogged, the pilot light will struggle to remain on. Regular maintenance will keep this area clean, but if improper venting is snuffing out the pilot light, call for repairs. There might be other vent problems beyond dirt.

Also watch out for low gas pressure or possibly a gas leak. Although there are occasional hiccups in gas flow, a pilot light that has to fight to stay lit may be pointing to a problem with the gas supply. A gas leak can be a potential hazard, so you should not delay at calling in help.

If you need repairs to get your pilot light burning steadily, get a professional on the job as soon as you can. SPS Mechanical will deliver high-quality heating repair in Haddonfield, NJ and the surrounding area when you need it. We’re on call 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. Contact us today to schedule the repairs you need.

Continue Reading