One Call Plumbing Blog

What You Should Know About Your Water Service Line

Indoor plumbing is a relatively new advancement in human history. Can you believe that it wasn’t until 1833 that the White House had plumbing installed?

What You Should Know About Your Water Service Line

Of course, our water and sewer systems are so common that we take this modern luxury for granted. It’s especially important for homeowners to understand the basics of plumbing so they can quickly identify issues when they arise. And what better place to start than how we get water to our homes in the first place? Today, we’re sharing the essential information about the water service line.

What is the water service line?

The water service line brings fresh, drinkable water into your home so it can be distributed by your plumbing system. This system can get confusing for homeowners because part of it is public and part of it is private (meaning, your responsibility). The divider is typically your property line, or where your yard meets the sidewalk.

Water main – The large, primary pipe that carries fresh water to all the households in your neighborhood. The water main …

Tank or Tankless: What’s Best For Commercial Water Heaters?

For years, commercial property owners only had one choice when it came to a reliable hot water source. However, with advances in modern technology, commercial water heater capabilities have expanded to include options for tankless and traditional tank water heaters. 

Tankless Water Heaters

While tankless water heaters are a popular choice for homeowners, they don’t always have the same glowing reviews for commercial use. And just as traditional tank water heaters have their drawbacks for residential use, they can end up costing commercial property owners more than what is necessary for hot water. 

If you’re considering upgrading or replacing your water heater, it’s important to consider the pros and cons of both options. 

Tankless commercial water heaters

Tankless water heaters provide hot water on-demand. These water heaters are smaller in footprint than traditional tank water heaters and can provide a virtually endless supply of hot water. That said, electric tankless water heaters are typically not the ideal choice for serving an entire building with hot water. These electric units typically better function for smaller applications such as handwashing. 

In some instances, installing …

3 Common Causes of Tap Water That Smells Like Rotten Eggs

Of all the foul odors you can come across in your home, one of the most concerning is the stench of rotten eggs. It’s a clear sign that it’s time to clean out your fridge or, in emergency situations, that you may have a gas leak. 

3 Common Causes of Tap Water That Smells Like Rotten Eggs

But what does it mean if your tap water smells like rotten eggs? Read on and we’ll explain.

What causes water to smell like eggs?

The odor that you’re noticing is typically hydrogen sulfide, which can be naturally occurring or produced by sulfur bacteria. While hydrogen sulfide is generally not dangerous in water, it can contribute to clogged plumbing and other bacteria growth. Plus, it’s very unpleasant to smell and taste, so it’s a good idea to find and fix the cause as soon as possible.

How to find the source of the smell

To locate where the hydrogen sulfide is coming from, ask the following questions.

Is the odor only coming from hot water? If no, then it’s likely that bacteria are growing in the water heater. The tank may …

Considering a Tankless Water Heater? Here’s What You Need to Know

If you’ve watched a home renovation show, you may be intrigued about the benefits of a tankless water heater. Maybe you even have a friend who raves about their long showers and low energy bills. But would a tankless water heater work for your home? In this article, we’ll cover some of the most important aspects to consider to help you make the best choice.
Considering a Tankless Water Heater
What makes tankless water heaters different from traditional units?
When thinking about a water heater, we usually picture a giant tank that stores 30 or more gallons at a time. A tankless water heater works completely differently by only heating up water when needed – such as when you turn on the shower or dishwasher. As water passes through the small unit, it’s heated up immediately and then continues on through the pipes. That’s why tankless systems are sometimes called on-demand water heaters.
They are usually more expensive to install but save on energy bills
The biggest benefit of a tankless water heater is improved energy efficiency, which means you …

How to Use a Plunger to Unclog a Shower Drain in 7 Steps

On a list of the most annoying things in life, a clogged shower drain ranks somewhere between getting stuck in traffic and your neighbor playing their music too loud. But the one good thing is that it’s a nuisance you can actually do something about.
How to Use a Plunger to Unclog a Shower Drain in 7 Steps
Read on to learn how you can resolve most shower clogs on your own with a classic plumbing tool – the plunger.
What causes shower clogs?
The real question should be, what DOESN’T cause shower clogs? Think about how much soap, shampoo, hair, body oils, dirt, and other gunk goes down the drain while bathing, and it’s not surprising that they can get stuck together. The majority of clogs occur in the trap, which is a curved part of the pipe right below the drain.
The blockage can start off small – and you may notice the drain is flowing slower than normal. But eventually, it will build until there’s a complete clog and no water movement. Not only does this …

Soak Up Knowledge About Your Hose Bib

We’ve waited long enough to enjoy the summer weather outside our homes. For many activities – from playing in sprinklers to gardening – you will need access to water. This is where the hose bib becomes one of your summer BFFs. 
Soak Up Knowledge About Your Hose Bib
In this article, we’re talking about hose bibs – what makes them different than inside faucets and potential problems to look out for. 
What is a hose bib?
A hose bib is a type of water faucet that is found on the exterior of your home. Most commonly, this is where you attach a hose to water the lawn, wash the car, fill the pool, or a variety of other uses.
What makes things confusing is there are many alternate names for a hose bib, including spigot, hose valve, outdoor water faucet, sillcock, and more. No matter what you call it, odds are that you use it more frequently in the summer.
Parts of a hose bib
Because of the outdoor elements, a hose bib is built differently than other water faucets you’d …

Are Bathroom Wipes Really Flushable?

Are Bathroom Wipes Really Flushable?With toilet paper becoming a hard-to-find commodity over the past few months, we’ve seen plenty of jokes about having to use other items to do one’s business. In reality though, plumbing problems are no laughing matter. Any time you flush a product other than toilet paper, you risk causing a clog.
That leads us to a hot debate – what about “flushable” wipes? You may notice that we put that word in quotes, which could give you an idea of where we stand.
How toilet paper works differently than wipes
Standard toilet paper is specifically designed to dissolve in water. This prevents TP from creating a blockage in your plumbing, as well as when it reaches your sewer or septic system. Not all toilet paper is created equal, however. Products with multiple-ply counts or lotions will break down a bit slower than your run-of-the-mill single-ply varieties – but they still do the job.
On the other hand, the majority of adult or baby wipes do not break down quickly enough to be safe for plumbing systems. One clue is that these products are pre-moistened, so they obviously are able to maintain strength …

Does Your Home Need a Sump Pump?

Most plumbing systems are designed to bring water into your home for drinking, bathing, cleaning, flushing, and other uses. However, there is a plumbing system that is specifically designed to keep out water that you don’t want. And if you ever deal with a wet basement, it’s one that you should consider having installed in your home.
sump pump durham and raleigh
Today, we’re going to talk about sump pumps – what they are, how they work, and signs you may need one.
What does a sump pump do?
Water has a way of finding its way to the lowest point of the ground. Unfortunately, that means it often ends up uninvited to below-grade indoors spaces such as basements. A sump pump is designed to divert water away before it ends up inside. 
A sump pump is submerged into a basin that is dug below the floor level of the basement. Water that is either rising up from the water table or seeping down from the ground ends up in the low-lying basin. Once the basin fills to a …

How Does a Tankless Water Heater Work?

You may not think about it often, but we rely on our home water heater for many of our daily tasks. Everything from bathing to laundry to washing dishes calls for reliable hot water. However, the average water heater only lasts for 10-15 years. So if yours is nearing the end of its expected service life – or you want to improve the energy efficiency of your home – it may be time to plan on upgrading your unit.
Tankless Water Heater
By now you’ve probably heard of tankless water heaters, either from a friend or on a home improvement TV show. Ever wonder how they work or if one would be right for your home? Read on because today we’re covering the ins and outs of tankless water heaters.
The traditional – tank water heater
For a long time, the most common types of water heater have been tank storage units. As the name implies, these systems have tanks that store large amounts of water – 30 gallons or more. Water is heated and held in the …

What to Do When Your Drains Stop Up

Family Washing Hands At Kitchen Sink

One of the most frustrating issues for a homeowner to deal with is when a fixture or sink won’t drain properly. You could be doing something as simple as brushing your teeth when suddenly you notice your bathroom sink is backing up with water. Or you could be taking a shower when it turns into something that resembles a bath instead.

Chances are, you’ll look for a quick solution, such as chemical, store-bought drain cleaners. But we encourage you to contact our professionals instead.

“Why Not Use Store-Bought Drain Cleaners?”

After all, it seems like these drain cleaning chemicals would be the easiest way to unclog backed up drains, right? But half the time, they don’t actually work. This is because the chemicals in drain cleaning liquids may be formulated to dissolve some types of clogs, but not all of them—like grease. Chemical drain cleaners might only move the clog further down the drain.

There are other reasons to avoid these chemical “solutions,” too. They’re highly toxic and can wear down the lining of your pipes if used too often.

“So, I Can Never Relieve Clogs on My Own?”

Well, we …