SPS Mechanical Inc. Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Sicklerville’

3 Plumbing Installations You May Need

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

You plumbing system consists of many important components that work together to provide you with all of the conveniences that go along with modern plumbing. You may feel as if your plumbing system works adequately as-is. However, there are a few plumbing installations that could greatly improve not only your plumbing system but your quality of life as well. Call the plumbers at SPS Mechanical Inc. for more information about how you can get these plumbing installations in Sicklerville and check our guide.

Water Heater

Of course, you probably already have a water heater installed in your home. However, you may not have the most efficient water heater for your particular needs. If your water heater is oversized, it will use up more energy than your family needs to use. But if it’s undersized, you may not get enough hot water in your home. We can resize your new water heater unit in order to make sure it accommodates your family members’ needs. We can also help you select between a tank and tankless model if you’re considering more options for your home.

Water Treatment System

A water treatment system can improve the quality of the water throughout your entire home. While many homeowners rely on localized filters that remove contaminants from only one area of the home, this ignores the reality that these contaminants exist throughout the entire home. Filter contaminants from the entire water supply with a filter or specialty cartridge, or a reverse osmosis system, one of the most effective water filtration systems. We also install chemical feed pumps to eliminate contaminants from the water in your well.

Garbage Disposal

If you need a new garbage disposal unit, the installation cannot wait. Garbage disposals protect your plumbing from clogs that can eventually allow waste to backup through your drains. Make cleanup and cooking easier by installing a new garbage disposal unit for your kitchen sink. You can even upgrade your existing unit to one with better horsepower if you want yours to be more effective.

Call our plumbers at SPS Mechanical Inc. for plumbing services in Sicklerville. We offer new installation or repairs and maintenance for your existing units.

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Client Request: What Does a Backflow Preventer Do?

Monday, February 16th, 2015

In many ways, we take our modern plumbing system for granted. Clean water and proper drainage are luxuries that we’ve come to expect, in part because our plumbing systems are designed to prevent impurities from entering the water system. Most municipalities put their water through a rigorous water treatment process before it reaches the residential areas. However, this doesn’t mean that contaminants cannot possibly reach your water supply. Unfortunately, undesirable cross-connections may occur and, if so, this will allow groundwater, pesticides, or wastewater to enter your drinking water. This is why most residential and commercial plumbing systems are outfitted with a backflow preventer.

The water supply is kept under very high pressure so that water can easily flow from a tap in your home. But let’s say that there was a sudden drop in this pressure. Perhaps the water line burst all of a sudden, or maybe a nearby fire hydrant discharged large volumes of water, drawing from your water supply. This abrupt drop in pressure could force a reverse-flow in the water line, sucking in any nearby source of liquid. This means that pesticides in the ground or even sewage could potentially move into the water pipes.

Backflow preventers are required components of most plumbing systems in order to keep this sort of contamination from occurring. Many have a series of check valves and air gaps that help to stop backflow, while other more advanced backflow preventers are more complex. These models, called reduced pressure zone devices, work even if check valves malfunction due to a pressure-monitored chamber.

A backflow preventer is a necessary component in any plumbing layout, but it requires regular maintenance if you want to keep your water supply protected. You should have a plumber check your backflow preventer every once in a while, or you can ask your plumber to test your backflow preventer during an annual plumbing maintenance visit.

At SPS Mechanical Inc., we maintain and repair backflow preventers in Sicklerville, and we also provide backflow prevention device certification and testing. Even if your plumbing system appears to be fine, you should consider testing it to make sure your home or business continues to be protected. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment.

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Is It Possible to Convert My Home to Natural Gas?

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Back in the day, once you chose a certain kind of heating system for your home, you were stuck with it until it was time to replace it. However, if you use a propane or oil system, you have the option to convert your system to natural gas. Handling the conversion process on your own can be challenging, as there are many steps involved with the conversion process. This is why hiring a heating services company that specializes in natural gas conversion in Sicklerville makes the process far easier. The experts at SPS Mechanical, Inc., have handled hundreds of natural gas conversions, so if you are interested in finding out more about converting your oil or propane heating system to natural gas, call us today!

Steps of Natural Gas Conversion

Some conversions may require more work than others, but here is a general overview of what to expect during the conversion process:

  • Find exact location of natural gas line – for any gas conversion to take place, it’s necessary to be in close proximity to a main gas line in your neighborhood. As such, the company will find out the location of the closest gas line to your home.
  • Survey of the site – this step entails calculating the heating load for your home, evaluating the existing heating system and determining how much gas piping will be needed for your home.
  • Coordination with the gas company – a gas load data sheet is created for the gas company and includes the following information: owner of the property, property location, the gas loads for any current gas appliances and what the gas load(s) will be for new gas appliances, and the make, model and gas requirements of the new heater.
  • Gas pipe installation – as soon as all permits are obtained, the gas piping is installed.
  • Gas pipe inspection – once all the gas piping is installed, it has to be inspected by the gas company to ensure it has been installed correctly.
  • New heater is installed – after the gas company approves the new gas piping, your new heater is installed and tested.

As you can see, handling a natural gas conversion on your own can be challenging. This is why working with experts, like the ones at SPS Mechanical, Inc., can make the difference between a difficult or easy natural gas conversion in Sicklerville. Ready to convert to natural gas? Call us today!

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Do You Need to Replace Your Water Heater for Oil to Gas Conversions?

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

If any of the major appliances in your home run on oil or propane, you know just how much of a chore it can be to maintain them. You frequently have to get your oil tank refilled, which is a hassle in itself. Furthermore, you get stuck with the bill, which turns this inconvenience into a real nuisance. Thankfully, natural gas is one of the cheapest utilities available, and can be used for many household appliances like boilers, furnaces, and water heaters. If you want to make the switch for your home, a trained contractor is usually available in your area who is certified to perform such work.

But if you’ve been considering switching your appliances from oil to natural gas, you may have a few questions for your technician. The first question many homeowners ask is whether they’ll need to replace their older unit. Is it possible to convert an existing oil unit to natural gas? Or will I need to install an entirely new system? This will depend on many factors of your particular unit, but some of the details are described below.

Many contractors can actually convert some oil units into natural gas burning units. To do so, they must use oil-to-gas conversion kits compatible with your particular burner. A conversion burner can be installed in many residential heating appliances so that a technician can professionally hook up your home to a gas line.

Unfortunately, oil-to-gas conversion isn’t always possible. Some oil appliances simply were not built to use anything but oil to run and are not compatible with an oil-to-gas conversion kit. Oftentimes, homeowners find out that the only way to get natural gas to their appliances is by replacing the entire unit. However, there are many benefits to installing a new unit anyway.

Your new water heater or other gas appliances may be very efficient, saving you even more every month over an older oil appliance. Besides, a newer unit does not have any worn down parts, so you won’t have to worry about frequent repairs or breakdowns for a long time to come. Call the experts at SPS Mechanical Inc. to convert or replace your water heater and other appliances in Sicklerville and the surrounding area and to learn how you can convert any other oil appliance as well.

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Oil to Natural Gas Conversions: The Time Is Right

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Do you still use oil for power in your home? Chances are good that you, like many people in Southern New Jersey, still make use of oil to fuel boilers, furnaces, or stoves. However, the option to convert your home over to natural gas may be heading your way. South Jersey Gas is expanding a natural gas pipeline as part of a $90 million project to increase the state’s use of natural gas and create more environmentally friendly and efficient energy solutions.

There are many reasons you should consider an oil to natural gas conversion in Sicklerville, NJ for your home. Contact SPS Mechanical Inc. and we will help you find out if conversion is possible where you live (or if it soon will be). You can then let us take over the job of connecting your home and its appliances to the gas line.

Why You Should Change From Oil to Natural Gas

  • Convenience: You’ve probably run out of oil before at a time when you needed power the most. That is the biggest hassle about using oil for heating fuel: you have to store it, and if you forget to take delivery you can run out at the worst time. But with natural gas, the power comes from a municipal supply, piped right into your house. You never have to worry about running out of fuel.
  • Increased energy efficiency: One of the reasons the State of New Jersey is making the conversion to natural gas is that gas is more budget-friendly than oil because it burns more completely, resulting in less waste. In 2011, the federal Energy Information Administration found from a study that the average U.S. homeowner paid three times more to heat a home during the winter using oil than using natural gas. Just as New Jersey expects to pay less for energy, you can also expect to pay less with the switch to natural gas.
  • Domestically produced: Natural gas comes from local sources, not overseas oil drilling. You help support U.S. energy independence when you start using natural gas.
  • Tax rebate: As part of New Jersey’s natural gas expansion, some utility companies will offer rebates to homes that choose oil-to-gas conversion. Rebates run as high as $400, making natural gas an even better bargain that will rapidly pay for conversion costs.

Oil is an out-of-date fuel source for homes, and if there is any way of making the switch to gas, you should take advantage of it. An oil to natural gas conversion in Sicklerville, NJ may now be possible for your home, or possible in the near future, thanks to the new natural gas pipeline. Give us a call today to talk with one of our oil-to-gas conversion specialists at SPS Mechanical Inc. and learn more about the process.

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New Natural Gas Pipelines Help Power Southern New Jersey

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Natural gas as a power supply for your home offers a number of major advantages over using electricity and oil. Natural gas is less expensive than electricity and more efficient when it comes to powering a furnace or a boiler. It is also less expensive than oil and propane, and in addition it burns much cleaner, and you don’t have to worry about running out of your supply because natural gas comes right to your house through a pipeline. No more unpleasant surprises because you forgot to fill up the tank! If you have a home that depends on oil or propane to fuel its furnace or boiler through a New Jersey winter, then you should give serious consideration to making a full oil-to-gas conversion. This is especially helpful if your home relies heavily on liquid propane not only for a furnace or boiler, but also for your hot water heater, kitchen range, and clothes dryer. Contact SPS Mechanical Inc. today to talk to our conversion specialists about hooking up your home with the cost-effective and clean benefits of natural gas if you have a nearby natural gas pipeline and in need of a natural gas piping service in Sicklerville, NJ.

But even if you only use electricity to run the appliances and heater in your home, natural gas provides great advantages. As a power source for the electrical plants that provide energy to homes across the state, natural gas offers a clean, in-state, low-pollution solution to power planets that use coal and oil. And right now, the construction of a large pipeline build-out project will benefits hundreds of thousands of homes through the southern portion of the state.

South Jersey Gas has invested $90 million to construct 21 miles of new, 24-inch gas transmission pipelines in Southern New Jersey. Construction of the new pipeline will take place throughout 2014. The pipeline will deliver natural gas to the BL England electric generation facility, 15 miles southwest of Atlantic City. This plant currently operates from coal and oil, and the switch to natural gas will mean a far cleaner and more efficient working facility to provide electricity across the south of the state. This will serve the goals of promoting new, clean, in-state electrical power generation. It will also offer a level of reliability that many customers have not experienced before, delivering power to approximately 267,000 homes. The pipeline is state-of-the-art, including automatic and remotely controlled valves. South Jersey Gas had received approvals from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

For Woolwich and Pilesgrove Townships, a recent expansion of local gas lines is placing more homes within reach of the benefits for natural gas. The current plan is for the expansion to finish by fall of 2015.

To find out more about the various new natural gas pipelines available in these townships and in Sicklerville, NJ and how they will affect you, call our experts at SPS Mechanical Inc.

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Causes of Backflow in Your Sink or Toilet

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Clogs that cause backups are a regular occurrence in most homes. Sometimes you can clear them through plungers, other times you will need to contact plumbing professionals to remedy the situation.

Backflow is a different problem from backup. Although less common, backflow is more worrisome: instead of plumbing what won’t run wastewater through it, the wastewater will start to come up through the sink, toilet, or shower drain, even when they aren’t being used. This is one of the most serious issues that can affect your plumbing, and it requires that call a skilled plumber in Sicklerville, NJ as soon as you to locate the cause of the backflow and stop it before your home sustains damage.

Backflow is a textbook example of a plumbing emergency, so make sure you have the number of a skilled plumber with 24/7 services available should your home ever encounter sewage backflow. SPS Mechanical Inc. is here to help you any time of the day or night.

What Can Cause Backflow to Occur?

  • A broken backflow preventer: The backflow preventer is a crucial component of your home’s wastewater disposal system. Most homes use gravity to move sewage from the house and into the municipal system, although ones that are lower than the entrance to the municipal sewer will need a sewer ejector pump. The backflow preventer is a check valve that keeps the sewage from flowing back into the system. Should the backflow preventer break, you will start experiencing backflow troubles throughout your home. Broken backflow preventers are serious problems that must be remedied immediately. Make the call—whatever time of day or night—to professionals to come out and handle the replacements and repairs necessary.
  • Sewer line damage: The sewer line that carries the wastewater from your house to the municipal system can suffer damage (especially if it is made of older material like galvanized steel), and this will cause sewage to begin to flow back inside your home. This will usually start in your basement before it reaches toilets and sinks, so watch for signs of sewage leaking from basement drains and traces of foul odors. Sewer line replacement requires extensive work from professionals.
  • Municipal source: Sometimes, there is nothing wrong with your plumbing; the issue lies in with the city or local sanitation district, and a backup within the system has caused the backflow into homes. Although the responsibility rests with the utility company to fix the problem, you must still call a plumber to your home to manage the clean-up and to prevent damage to your plumbing and home.

We must emphasize the seriousness of sewage backflow: it can lead to major damage to your home and require extensive restoration work if it is not halted quickly. At the first sign of backflow, give us a call anytime and the 24-hour emergency services of SPS Mechanical Inc. will send a plumber to your home in Sicklerville, NJ to fix the problem, pronto!

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How Does Low Refrigerant Affect Air Conditioning?

Friday, April 25th, 2014

Refrigerant is an essential part of air conditioning operation. Without it, an AC cannot carry out heat exchange: the shifting of heat from one location (inside your house) to another (outside your house). It takes only a small loss of refrigerant in an air conditioner will lead to many problems. When you encounter AC refrigerant loss, summon professional repairs right away.

No matter what time of day or night you need air conditioning repair in Sicklerville, NJ, count on SPS Mechanical Inc. to answer your call. We have NATE-certified technicians on staff with the training to address any trouble in your AC, from low refrigerant to burned -out motors.

The Problems of Low Refrigerant

Refrigerant is a chemical blend designed to make an easy phase transition between liquid and gas and back again using only a small amount of energy. The transitions absorb and release heat, and this makes refrigerant the ideal vessel for moving heat from indoors to outdoors.

The refrigerant must stay at a specific charge (i.e. level) in an air conditioner that is balanced to the system’s size. During normal operation, refrigerant does not “get used up.” However, refrigerant can leak from an AC due to damage, corrosion, and loose connections. When the charge drops, it affects the air conditioner’s cooling power.

Refrigerant at a lower charge than it should be inhibits the indoor coil from absorbing the proper amount of heat. This will not only reduce the cooling ability of the AC, it will cause the evaporator coil to begin to ice over because the refrigerant’s temperature is not rising high enough. The more the coil develops ice across it, the less it can absorb heat, leading to a downward cycle that will eventually end in no cooling power at all.

Low refrigerant also damages the compressor, the “heart” of the air conditioner where the liquid refrigerant is squeezed into a high pressure gas. The compressor is designed to match the refrigerant charge, and if it drops, the compressor will start to overwork and will soon break. Replacing the compressor of an AC is an expensive repair that you want to avoid at all costs.

Detecting and Repairing Refrigerant Loss

There are a few signs of loss of refrigerant: reduced cooling, ice appearing along the indoor coil, and hissing sounds. At the first indication of any of these, shut off the system and call for a repair technician.

Repairs for refrigerant loss involve finding the source of the leak, fixing it, and then recharging the refrigerant to its correct amount. The new refrigerant must be the correct blend, and the system cannot be overcharged (which is as damaging as being undercharged). Always rely on trained professionals for this task.

When low refrigerant afflicts your home’s comfort, let SPS Mechanical Inc. be your HVAC company for quality air conditioning service in Sicklerville, NJ. Give us a call today!

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Help! My Wedding Ring Fell Down the Drain!

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

It’s a nightmare scenario… worse than a basement leak, more worrisome than a busted water main…. Your wedding ring has gone down a sink drain!

Take a moment to breathe. You don’t want to panic. Your ring isn’t necessarily gone forever. This is a time where a professional plumber can seem like a superhero. When you need that skilled plumbing in Sicklerville, NJ to rescue that lost wedding ring, call SPS Mechanical Inc. and we’ll come to save the day.

We’ll walk you through a few steps to take immediately after your ring disappears down the drain.

Follows these steps when you lose your wedding band:

  • First… Don’t run the faucet! You don’t want any more water to go down the drain. At this point, your ring has probably stopped in the p-trap of the drainpipe, the u-shaped pipe directly beneath the sink. Water running down the sink could push the ring farther along, making it more difficult for a plumber to retrieve.
  • Second… Take a plastic bucket and place it underneath the p-trap. Better put some thick towels of newspapers around the bottom of the bucket to absorb water that spills out.
  • Third… Find the access plug on the p-trap. If your plumbing doesn’t have this (often true for older pipes) then the p-trap will need dismantling with wrenches. We don’t advise you do this on your own—the pipes can be difficult to reattach—and you should call a plumber at this point.
  • Fourth… Pull open the access plug. Water will fall into the bucket (and elsewhere; you’ll be glad for the towels and newspapers). Wait until all the water from the p-trap has drained out. Reach into the bucket of water and locate your ring.
  • Fifth… Replace the plug. Run water through the drain to make sure the seal is secure and there are no leaks.
  • Sixth… If you didn’t find your ring in the fourth step, you should call a professional plumber. Don’t feel embarrassed about this; plumbers are accustomed to this sort of emergency call, and they understand how important this is to you.

Call SPS Mechanical Inc. when you can’t retrieve your ring out of the p-trap, and we’ll send one of our Sicklerville, NJ plumbing experts to your aid.

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How Geothermal Heating Works

Monday, January 27th, 2014

If you walk outside on a cold day and stand on a bare patch of ground, you may wonder how you could extract heat from it use it to warm your house. However, geothermal heat pumps work with incredible efficiency that you won’t find in many other heating systems. Where standard heat pumps, which use the air as their source for heat exchange,  lose efficiency in very cold weather, geothermal heat pumps do not encounter the same problem because the temperature under the earth stays the same year round.

We’ll explain the operation of geothermal heating (which also applies to cooling) so you’ll understand some of its benefits. Call SPS Mechanical Inc. for more information, and to set up an appointment to see if a geothermal heat pump will work where you live.

Geothermal Heat

The earth itself is a source of heat: the core radiates warmth out toward the planet’s surface, and the continental plates float around on a molten sea. Although you can’t sense this from just walking around on the surface, you will notice it if you dig down only 10 feet. At this point, the temperature stabilizes to around fifty degrees, and does not fluctuate much, regardless of the chill of the air above. A geothermal system exploits this temperature stability and uses it as the medium for the heat exchange in its heat pump.

Underground pipes, called loop fields, are buried down in the earth near a home. Vertical loops will be buried deep, but horizontal loop systems won’t require as much digging to install. Antifreeze flows through these loops, and it absorbs heat from the earth.  The heat is than transferred to your heat pump system via a heat exchanger, and the heat pump uses that heat to warm the air that is then distributed throughout your ducts. (During the summer, the process reverses, and heat is removed from the home and put into the ground.)

Air-source heat pumps lose efficiency when the temperature drops below freezing, but geothermal heat pumps won’t have this problem because the ground provides a consistent temperature (usually around 55°F) . The geothermal pump also operates almost silently and works so efficiently that it can usually pay for itself with energy savings in 5–10 years. Geothermal heating is also beneficial to the environment, with almost zero emissions.

Professional Geothermal Installation

Only professional geothermal installers can correctly perform the job of setting up a system for you. Installers can also determine if geothermal will work for your location, since not every home is ideally situated for this type of heating.

SPS Mechanical Inc. has geothermal experts ready to help you if you are interested using the power of the earth for heating in Sicklerville, NJ. Call us today.

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