What Happens When a Garbage Disposal Dies?
Our late 1980’s model garbage disposal finally bit the dust. It started fading away slowly — first the blades wouldn’t rotate when the switch was turned on, but responded well to the broom-handle treatment. Then, the reset button kept needing to be “reset”. We limped along for a couple of months until the disposal finally gave up the ghost about a month ago. We have a shiny new InSinkerator Pro Series ready to be installed, but we haven’t gotten around to it yet. So what happens when the disposal dies?

• You forget that you don’t have a disposal and rinse food down the drain anyway, Result: Clog.
• Everyone else forgets, too. Result: Clog.
• You spend a lot of time sticking your hand in the disposal drain picking food out of the drain. Result: You realize how distasteful it is to put your hand in the disposal.

Solution: Have the replacement disposal installed as quickly as possible.

Disposal Gaskets — A Breeding Ground for Germs
When the disposal is in good working order, remember to clean the gasket every week or two to prevent greasy build up and odors.

Here’s how:
1) Remove the gasket (if possible).
2) Using an old toothbrush and a good de-greasing liquid dish soap or chemical cleaner, scrub the food debris and greasy buildup from the gasket. Make sure to reach all the gasket nooks and crannies.
3) Scrub the drain area around the gasket – there is a metal groove that also harbors germs.
4) When finished cleaning the gasket, place it back into position and rinse the sink area thoroughly with hot water.

Rusty Toilet Bowl? Iron-Out Works Wonders
If your water is prone to leaving iron stains around the drain or in the toilet bowl, try using a product called Iron-Out. It’s a white powder that will remove iron stains from white clothes and toilet bowls.

Give the rusty bowl a pre-cleaning to remove the easy dirt, then add a generous amount of Iron-Out to the bowl (both above and below the water line) and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Before flushing, scrub the bowl again to remove the iron, then flush. Repeat as needed.

Water Deposits on Your Faucets?
Few things are more lovely than a sparkling, shiny kitchen or bathroom faucet. With a good chemical cleaner such as CLR or Lime-A-Way, faucets are a snap to make squeaky clean. If you prefer the natural approach, cider vinegar does a good job as well. Be aware that chemical cleaners are caustic — don’t let them sit on sink porcelain for more than 1 or 2 minutes or it’s possible the glaze will become damaged. Rinse with lots of cold water and polish with a dry cotton towel.

Tip: If your shower head shows signs of hard water deposits, soak it overnight in vinegar or for less time in a chemical cleaner. Either remove the head and place it in a baggie with the cleaning liquid or put the cleaner in a baggie and tie it onto the in-place shower head. When it’s clear the deposits are taken care of, rinse well with cold water.

Water You Waiting For? If you prefer a new disposal, shower head, or faucet to the old one you may currently be using, call Ray today for a free quote. Our highly trained professionals at Allied Reddi Rooter are on hand to assist with selection and installation. Coupons may apply; call today for a free phone estimate: 513-396-5300.

We have a friend who is constantly yammering about “the way things used to be.” Dude, welcome to the innovations of the 21st century—some things from the past are better left behind. In plumbing, the tools used to bust up main drain line clogs have advanced a lot from electric eels and metal snakes. When it comes to clearing drain clogs quickly, thoroughly, and with minimal potential harm, today’s tool of choice is a high-pressure water jet.

Why Water Jet?
• Rigid metal cables cannot always fit through the tight radius of main drain lines.
• Metal snakes/eels can break through the drain lines, causing greater damage.
• Water jetters typically have a longer reach, making it easier to access longer drain runs.
• Water jetters work under high pressure, easily cutting through tree roots, silt and tough clogs.
• Water jetters are self-propelled and run smoothly through twisty drain lines.

Types of Household Drain Clogs
The most common cause of drain clogs are solid items in the piping, such as food, hair, grease, tree roots, personal toiletry products, washcloths, and toys. Below are clogs that happen frequently and may be a candidate for a high-pressure water jet cleaning.

• Main sewer line clog – Generally, homeowners are responsible for maintaining the portion of sewer line/main drain line between the house and the street (e.g., the part that’s buried in your yard). When a main line become clogged, tree roots are a common culprit.

• Dishwasher clog – When you run the dishwasher, does water backup into your sink? That’s a problem that bears investigation – your household drainage systems may benefit from a high-pressure water jetting to clear caked on grease that’s choking down drainage lines.

• Garbage disposal clogs – Disposals are one of our favorite plumbing devises, but they have limits. Run lots of cold water when using a disposal to ensure that food waste is washed away and doesn’t sit in your pipes. Never dispose of stringy foods (celery, fatty meats) or cooling oils/grease.

Water You Waiting For? Ray and his team of Allied Reddi-Rooter plumbing professionals are skilled at using high pressure water jetting to clear sewer line/main drain line clogs. If you are have water (or worse) backing up into your basement or bathroom drains, call Ray today at 513.396-5300 for a free consultation on the advantages of high pressure drain cleaning. BONUS: Ask about our 2-hour arrival timeframe and discount coupons.

Coming off the usual weekend warrior household projects, plumbing issues are on our mind yet again. This weekend, we cleaned out the garage and sent two new P-traps and two sets of toilet tank replacement parts to the thrift store. We’ve stored these parts for years and no doubt, now that we’ve let them go our plumbing will break ASAP. On the bright side, the act of editing our household stuff generated conversations about our day-to-day plumbing needs. See Q&A below.

Q: What are the most important plumbing tools to keep at home?

A: The top three tools on our list are:

· A toilet “snake” or auger is at the top of the list. This is the hand-held cable tool used to break up clogs.

· A good plunger or two (Note: for sanitary purposes, keep two plungers: one for the toilet and a different one for the sink)

· A wet-dry shop vac, which is a good all-around tool to have wherever you live.

Q: How should I go about choosing a plumber?

A: If your need is not urgent (read: I’m planning an improvement, not staring at a clogged toilet or main drain line), do as much research as possible before making a decision:

· Look for a state-licensed plumber; in an ever-increasing regulatory environment, licensed plumbers are becoming harder to find and well worth the effort.

· Consult the Better Business Bureau or Angie’s List to find out what others think about a plumbing company and how disputes are handled.

· Ask the plumber for references and call those previous clients to get their opinion of the plumber’s work.

· Askfor a free estimate on the job at hand, ask if it’s acceptable to supply your own parts, and if possible, speak with the owner of the plumbing company so you can get a feel for his work philosophy.

Q: What uses the most water in our home?

A: Surprisingly, toilets are the real water-wasters in any home or business; the shower/dishwasher/clothes washer…not so much. Tips:

· Keep your toilet in good repair because a constantly running/leaking toilet can really do a #2 on your water bill.