The Best Clogged Drain Tool Is The Hydro Jet

Rocket Plumbing is committed to bring the best solutions to bear on our Los Angeles customers various plumbing repairs. A new machine we are excited about is the Hydro-jet. If we are to professionally and expeditiously deliver on our promise of top customer service and the best plumbing repair solutions, taking our tools seriously is part the work involved. This tool for the toughest, greasiest, compacted drains can be cleaned with our Hydro-Jetting system. There is nothing else like it out there. In our mission to assist in maintaining a healthy plumbing system throughout your home or business, the Hydro-jet deserves consideration.

Hydro-jetting is the process of using water under high pressure to scour the pipe walls clean of grease, debris, roots, sand or dirt and flush it all out and away downstream.

The Hydro-jetting service is unique in that it is the only process that can actually clean your lines. Because of this, hydro-jetting has become the industry standard for sewer and drain cleaning.

The old way has been to use “snaking” or “rootering”. While using a cable to “snake” through a line and punch thru a blockage, it still left only a hole in the blockage. So by it’s nature, that is only a temporary fix.

See the image below to appreciate the engineering quality that has gone into crafting this terrific tool, that cuts down the risk of a pipe or sewer line disaster, and keeps every thing flowing just as intended.

 

 

The post The Best Clogged Drain Tool Is The Hydro Jet appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.

Advertisements

Happy Memorial Day in 2018 From Rocket Plumbing California

Hello everyone!  We want to wish everyone a happy and safe Memorial day weekend.

Wondering how to celebrate?  How to enjoy the day off in this great country?  Below is a list of celebrations listed by areas our Plumbing locations serve.  To all our Rocket Plumbing customers, eat well, be well, and make more memories today to be grateful for.

In Los Angeles:

Memorial Day observances in Los Angeles County will include a parade in Canoga Park, a ceremony at the Los Angeles National Cemetery in Westwood and a Mass celebrated by Archbishop Jose H. Gomez in Mission Hills.

In Santa Monica:

The Woodlawn Cemetery 80th Annual Memorial Day Observance 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM PDT
Free parking can be found at Santa Monica College’s Lot 4 at 16th St. & Pico Blvd. Santa Monica College’s Lot 6 at 14th and Pico Blvd. is $5. There will be shuttle service to the Cemetery from both lots and the Elks Lodge at 1040 Pico Blvd. Big Blue Bus Lines 7, Rapid 7, 41, and 42 serve the Cemetery.

Google My Map

The post Happy Memorial Day in 2018 From Rocket Plumbing California appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.

What Can You Expect To Pay For Los Angeles Water Heater Repair?

We came across this really terrific data about how much Water Heater Repair can cost. Their summation is:

National Average   $526
Typical Range  $206 – $846
Low End $95
High End $1,338

We want to share with you this terrific information, and then share our own thoughts afterwards. Read the whole thing:

The national average cost to repair a water heater is $526. The typical range for repairs is $206 and $846, though homeowners have spent as little as $100 and as much as $1,300.

There is nothing worse than waking up on a frigid winter morning to a cold shower because the water heater that is on the fritz, or worse, has completely died! Conventional water heaters are relatively simple and straightforward in the way that they operate, so there are only a few things that can malfunction. Cold water enters the tank and is heated by an electric element or gas burner. As the water heats, pressure builds inside the tank. When you turn on a tap, pressure sends hot water out of the faucet. Problems could be as simple as a pilot light that has gone out, a circuit breaker that has tripped, or a thermostat that is broken. The average thermostat replacement cost is between $100-$300. Most other repairs are equally affordable.
There are two main types: gas and electric. A gas unit works by way of a gas flame while an electric one works using electric elements, or coils. The two types have similar life spans and repair costs. A gas one will cost more to install and replace, though it won?t use as much energy over time as an electric unit. Here are a few things to consider when faced with the cost of repairing or replacing your water heater.

On This Page:

Gas Heater Repairs
Pilot Light
Thermocouple
Gas Control Valve
Thermostat
Electric Repairs
Heating Element
Thermostat
Fixing Hot Water Heater
Replacing Other Elements
Pressure Relief Valve
Anode Rod
Dip Tube
Tank Cleaning
Replace Water Heater
Gas Water Heater Repairs

Gas models will have issues that are unique to their power source. The three most frequent problems are with the pilot light, the thermocouple, and the gas control valve. To figure out the root of your problem, a professional will need to troubleshoot each element as they go. Plumbers charge $45-$150 per hour and the most common issues with gas units cost between $150-$500 to fix.Some of these repairs can be done without a professional, but only if you follow instructions and secure your gas line. Before you relight a pilot light or perform repairs on your own, make sure that you are comfortable working with gas and that there aren?t strong gas smells around your unit. If there is a strong gas odor, call a professional and address the problem as soon as possible.

Pilot Light Assessment and Reignition – $45-$150 per hour
One of the most common problems with gas units is the pilot light going out. There may be no need for repairs, if this is the case. It could be that it was blown out or that your unit temporarily lost its gas connection. If you follow safe procedures, you can relight this component on your own. This would save you a service call fee, which could range from $45-$150 per hour. If it doesn?t light, you could have thermocouple or valve issues.

Thermocouple Replacement – $20-$150
Calling a professional plumber to install a new thermocouple should only be up to $150. If you do the work yourself, you will only pay the price of the part which is about $20.
The thermocouple is responsible for sensing that the pilot light is lit and triggering the gas control valve to continue providing gas. When this part fails, it won?t be able to accurately sense the presence of the flame and the control valve will stop releasing gas. As a result, you will not be able to relight the pilot or even the burner. Replacement is the only option, when your thermocouple stops working.

If you are considering this as a DIY job, be sure to shut off your gas connection and let the water cool before working with the unit.

Gas Control Valve Replacement – $300-$500
If your pilot light and thermocouple are in good shape, it may be that you need a new gas control valve. When this part has gone bad, replacing it is usually a more efficient and cost-effective option than repair. The control valve is responsible for releasing gas and turning it off when the pilot light is out. A bad valve can render your entire unit unsafe. A professional will diagnose this problem if your burner or pilot light won?t light or stay lit, and after issues with the thermocouple and pilot light themselves have been ruled out.

Installing New Gas Thermostat – $80
The thermostat is part of the valve unit and, therefore, fixing issues with it will involve replacing or repairing the entire valve. One common sign of a faulty thermostat is a burner that fails to ignite. A valve unit costs an average of $80.

Electric Water Heater Repairs
Tripped breakers and bad heating elements are the most common issues when it comes to these units. A tripped breaker can be resolved without the help of an electrician. If a breaker isn?t your issue, you?ll want to test both the thermostats and their heating elements.

Heater Element Replacement – $200-$300
Keep in mind that this equipment receives a very high voltage of electricity and can be very hazardous to work with. You must be sure to shut off the electricity to your unit before testing and repairing on your own.
The typical professional charge to repair your heating elements is $200-$300. There are two of these in each unit, one at the top and one at the bottom. The top element controls the bottom element and, if it goes bad, your unit won?t be able to generate hot water. You can test the function of these elements with continuity testers, which cost up to $10 at hardware stores.

Thermostat Replacement – $150-$200
Hiring a professional to remove a thermostat and install a new one averages $150-$200. On their own, the parts cost up to $20. Each heating element is connected to its own thermostat. If you or your plumber find that the elements are in working condition, your problem is likely one or two malfunctioning thermostats. These can be replaced easily and without removing the elements themselves.

Hot Water Heater Repairs
Your home may be outfitted with a hot water heater, or boiler, instead of the conventional gas or electric model. Boiler repairs cost an average of $350 and have similar issues to conventional systems. Most likely, you have an indirect system that allows your gas or electric boiler to also heat the water in your home. These systems are more efficient and are considered a ?green? solution. The following are common issues and repairs for these units.

Tripped breaker or blown fuse (electric) – $20 per fuse – Most homeowners can diagnose a tripped breaker or damaged fuse on their own by checking the fuse box.

Pilot light out (gas) – $45-$150 per hour for repairs – As with conventional gas systems, plumbers find that the pilot light is one of the most frequent culprits. You can often diagnose this yourself but, if you aren’t sure or you are uncomfortable, it is worth calling a professional with experience handling gas.

Thermostat replacement ? $50-$100 per hour of labor – The thermostat which controls the temperature in these systems is also known as an Aquastat ($70-$150). These are very easy to access and replace. Just make sure to turn the breaker off before you begin.

Low water level ? One of the top issues with boiler systems is that the water level in the expansion tank is low. The proper fill is halfway with a pressure of 12-15 psi. Homeowners can fill the expansion tank themselves.
Leaking ? up to $1,000 for fixes – Most leaks should be handled by a professional. They could be caused by a malfunctioning pump, a bad seal, sediment, faulty valves, or compromised pipe connections.
Return to Top

Replacing Other Heating Elements
Replacement might not be as simple as hooking up the new system. Many local building codes now require you upgrade other items like, the water heater mount, venting system, supply pipes, and the drain pan under the heater. Ask your installer to address these issues before installation, so you don’t have any surprises!

Pressure Relief Valve – $20-$200
A replacement valve costs around $20 and calling in a professional could bring your cost up to $200. This isn?t a steep cost to ensure proper diagnosis and installation. The pressure relief valve is there as a safety measure in case the pressure inside the tank gets too high. If moisture is seeping out of this valve at a ?leaking? rate, there are several potential problems. You may have sediment built up in the valve, the pressure in your tank may be too high, or you may need a new part entirely.
Removing this valve to install a new one is one of the safer repairs to attempt on your own. If you plan to diagnose this yourself, be sure to turn off your unit, turn off the gas (if applicable) and let the water cool before you inspect the valve.

Anode Rod – $20-$50
Plumbers suggest getting a new anode rod every five years. The rod itself is only $20-$50 and, with proper instructions and precautions, you can perform this maintenance on your own. The anode rod keeps the inside of your tank from corroding. It does so by drawing the corrosion to itself. If your rod has corroded extensively, your water will likely be a rusty color and may even have an odor and/or taste.

If you replace the anode rod before the corrosion enters the interior of your tank, you can extend the life of your water heater. If the interior of your tank is severely corroded, you?ll want to consider replacing it entirely.
Return to Top

Dip Tube – $10-$150
Dip tubes are usually $10. Replacing them professionally averages $150. Both electric and gas styles have these elements, which carry cold water from the top of your tank to the bottom. When your dip tube is disintegrated or broken off in the tank, your water will not get very hot.

Flush/Clean the Tank – $200
A plumber can refresh your tank for up to $200. Whether you repair or replace, these systems will perform better and last longer if you flush the tank once a year to remove sediment. Your unit will operate more efficiently, saving you money. This is true for both gas and electric systems.

One sure sign that you need to flush the tank is noise, which is caused by the sediment on the bottom. This sediment could cause a heating element to go bad, leaks, or unit failure.

When to Repair & When to Replace
Getting a new unit all-together will be $750-$1,300. A conventional storage tank water heater has a life of about 10-15 years, so if your unit is in that age range, it may be worth footing the cost to replace a water heater it rather than constantly fixing problems as they arise with age. However, if your water heater is only a few years old, repair may be the best way to go.
Over time, water minerals react with steel, corroding tanks. When it springs a leak, repair isn’t an option. Leaks from valves, pipes, and vents may simply require tightening and cleaning. If the leak is coming directly from the heater and pooling under it, you likely have serious damage to the tank itself, which cannot be remedied. Hire an experienced plumber if you think that this is the solution for you. They will help you to find the right equipment for your home and their skills will lend to an accurate and timely installation.

Will a new system lower my bills?
A professional will likely have great recommendations to improve your home?s efficiency. Today’s high-efficiency heaters can warm your water better and faster and save money on your energy bills. Manufacturers now inject foam insulation between the tank and its outer shell, resulting in higher heat retention. New glass liners make tanks less prone to corrosion.
You may need to pay to install a new conventional storage unit. But on the bright side, homeowners experience up to a 20% decrease in their bills with a more efficient system. If you do end up having to pay for a new water heater it may be more cost effective than your old one ever was.

The Rocket Plumbing take?  It’s always important to remember that California’s variable climates in areas of the State can effect water heaters, particularly when it comes to moisture, and materials expanding or contracting based on temperature.

For our Los Angeles area customers, thankfully, the climate is pretty stable compared to other areas of the State.

 

The post What Can You Expect To Pay For Los Angeles Water Heater Repair? appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.

Tankless Water Heaters And How They Have Changed

Brian McMahon, owner
Rocket Plumbing

Tankless Water Heaters have changed quite a bit since I was first trained and certified to install them.

While the benefits of immediate on-demand luxurious hot water and energy savings have always been there, another benefit with these water heaters was not there 13 years ago… ease of installation.

Don’t get me wrong, these tankless water heaters are quite the project. However, back in 2005, our quotes for them had to be $1000 more than today’s installations for a very good reason… Venting.

You see, back then, we had to use 5″ metal outbound pipe to vent heat and energy. This pipe in most homes had to be built from scratch, and necessarily meant cutting thru walls to get the exit out into the outdoors.

Today, we can use PVC pipe, which is much easier for plumbers to work with. We can get this part of the project done so much quicker, that our estimates for tankless water heater installation is, as I said, $1000 cheaper than in the mid 2000s.

It’s one of the things that energizes me about the plumbing industry… constant innovation and change with the tools, materials, and ever improving engineering forces the industry to constantly improve our living standards.

If you have any interest in Tankless Water Heaters.  NOTE:  if you are reading this in Los Angeles, give us a call at (323) 992-6477

 

What Are The Benefits Of A Tankless Water Heater?

Tankless units (also called “on demand” units) heat water only when you turn on the faucet. They usually operate on natural gas or propane. The main advantage is that they eliminate the extra cost of keeping 40 to 50 gallons of water hot in a storage tank, so you waste less energy.

Advantages to on-demand water heating include: Tankless water heaters are compact in size, taking up less space than conventional tank type water heaters. They can virtually eliminate standby losses – energy wasted when hot water cools down in long pipe runs or while it’s sitting in the storage tank.

Are tankless hot water heaters better?

It’s been our experience that they do save money in the long run, but don’t take it from us – According to Energy.gov,

For homes that use 41 gallons or less of hot water daily, demand (or tankless) water heaters can be 24%–34% more energy efficient than conventional storage tank water heaters.

The post Tankless Water Heaters And How They Have Changed appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.

Sewage spill into Marina del Rey triggers beach closure

This is a story from January 7th, which is a cautionary tale for all restaurateurs.

Sewage Spill into Marina del Rey

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Los Angeles County health officials have closed parts of the beach around Marina del Rey after a 1,100-gallon sewage spill.

Beachgoers were advised Sunday to avoid the water 100 yards up and down the coast next to the Ballona Creek outfall, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

Officials said a sewer line blocked by grease caused the sewage to enter the storm drain that leads directly into the marina.

It was not immediately clear late Sunday how long the closure would be in effect. Visitors can still go to the dry areas of the beach.

Did you catch that? GREASE build up in a sewer line. It has been our experience that restaurants are particularly susceptible to these types of emergencies. The average restaurant should have their grease traps cleared out every 3 months.  If you are a high volume eatery doing extremely well, it might even be prudent to do that every month.  Not only do you want to prevent a catastrophe that could shut down your business for a day or two, creating a PR nightmare, but can you imagine dealing with the headache of a city government official seeking to place blame?  Do the right thing by yourself, your employees, and your customers, and make sure to have those grease traps and sewer lines cleared as needed.  Ask us about how we use what’s called a Hydro Jet to clear out these sewer lines, it is the very best technology for preventing  a sewer emergency on your property. Marina del Ray is a mere miles from our Venice Plumbing Service location.

The post Sewage spill into Marina del Rey triggers beach closure appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.

Residential Gas Piping And What The Los Angeles Do-It-Yourselfer Needs To Know

Did you know that every weekend, the big box home improvement stores host home owners who are building on additions to their homes, expanding man caves, or adding a gas grill in the backyard, and these people are walking away from these bog box stores more annoyed than ever?

You see, the big box stores offer gas pipe threading… this important and detailed work is often done at the big box store by an employee who is simply following written instructions on the threading. That’s a mistake. You see, what most people don’t know is this threading is incredibly important to having gas pipes that work correctly and safely. At Rocket Plumbing, we take it SO seriously, we make sure every Rocket Plumber on a residential gas pipe project in and around Los Angeles has access to our pipe threading tool.

That’s it right there, the Rigid (it’s a beauty, cost us over $6k).

So why are these home owners getting frustrated by the big box stores on their threading?  We hear about it all the time.  “I had to wait all saturday morning and afternoon, they had only one person on staff who knew how to do it.”  “I get home and the threading wasn’t done right.  Wasted my whole afternoon, and had to buy new pipes anyway.” “The measurements were all wrong, wasted all that material.” “Wasn’t done correctly, found out at the worst time, couldn’t get it done in time for my party at my home.”

According to Brian McMahon of Rocket Plumbing:

 

Most homes have leaks and don’t even know it, most don’t rise to the level of a major a concern. Usually they are only found when someone wants to sell a home, when the home inspection is done. Most state regulations pertaining to require an inspection, and gas leaks are a must on these inspections. Usually, home inspectors will mark these problem areas with colored tape.

Most gas leaks have to rise to 5% to 15% ratio of gas to air, combustion to happen. A lot of leaks are small, and undetectable. Most aren’t harmful, but some can be. They should be fixed over time. We call that repiping, in order to ensure the leak is fixed. Most homes have a leak, however small, as that is the nature and physics of pipe fittings. Almost all of these leaks are so small, there is very little chance of real harm. But there are enough out there, just from the normal wear and tear from every day use and physics, that the small leak can and do become problem leaks.

City does not fix leaks as they are so prevalent, so plumbers are needed. Additions like gas grills in the back yard, adding heater to the man cave, or garage. The DIYer often tries to do these, without realizing that gas pipes are a different animal than water pipes. For one thing, they need to be threaded, threaded to the right standards. Yes, the DIYer can go to Home Depot to have this done. Unlike pvc and such, the pipes for Gas must be threaded. Unfortunately, the big box stores cannot handle pipe threading correctly and in the amount often for additions

We get many customers for gas pipe repairs or installation because they do not get correct pipe rethreading from the big box stores. Many of our customers who have tried that route complain about long wait times at the store, the pipe thread is done by someone who is unaware of the correct details to watch, and often create pipes that are unusable. Note: A pipe threader costs $6k. We use and recommend the Rigid Pipe Threader.

Gas meters are exposed and sometimes need to be upgraded when additions to homes are made, in order to handle the new needed bandwidth or pipe to handle the new greater volume coming thru the gas pipes.

Let Rocket Plumbing handle your Residential Gas Piping for your next addition to your home.

Rocket Plumbing Los Angeles
2355 Westwood Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90064
(323) 992-6477
Find us on Google Maps by clicking this link: https://goo.gl/vQ2xpK

Also find us on Google My Maps: Residential Gas Piping Repair and Installation

 

 

 

The post Residential Gas Piping And What The Los Angeles Do-It-Yourselfer Needs To Know appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.

iPhone Connected Bathroom And Kitchen Fixtures From Kohler?

Kohler, one of our recommended manufacturers of faucets and bathroom fixtures, has released a new high tech innovation we are very keen to see in action.

Kohler launches Kohler Konnect smart home range of iPhone-configurable bathroom and kitchen fixtures

Excerpt:

The new line of connected devices using Kohler Konnect mostly centers around the bathroom experience, with each including some element that users can fine tune to their preference. The Kohler Konnect companion app can be used to alter presets, such as temperatures and lighting, and in some cases, to remotely turn on elements.

A key aspect is the inclusion of voice control, allowing for the user to operate a kitchen faucet or intelligent toilet, change the lighting in a bathroom mirror, run a shower, or automatically fill a bath to a specified depth and temperature, all through vocal commands.

While the system runs on Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform, and has a greater focus on using Amazon’s Alexa for automation and commands, a number of items from within the range are also able to support Apple’s HomeKit, along with the Google Assistant. In theory, this means that some of the announced items could be automated in HomeKit scenes, or for features to be remotely triggered by Siri commands.

The main featured item in Kohler’s new product range is the Verdera Voice Lighted Mirror, which is claimed to be an industry first with Amazon’s Alexa built into the unit. Containing dual microphones and hermetically sealed stereo speakers, the mirror offers LED lights for illuminating the user, a motion-activated wayfinding nightlight, and the ability to access thousands of Alexa skills.

So how does all this technology make life easier?  In our mobile device, Google Assistant, Amazon Alex connected world, it means with this sort of plumbing technology installed in your home, voice activation is now possible:

Away from the bathroom, the Sensate Kitchen Faucet offers motion-based and vocal control for water dispensing. Commands can be used to turn the water flow on or off, or to dispense water to a measured volume, for example the vocal command “Pour eight ounces.”

These are nice quality of life improvements for just about everyone.  Not mentioned here is how these voice activated innovations can make homes more liveable and convenient for our friends and family who have physical limitations.  Anyone out there in Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Redondo Beach, or Venice who has physical limitations where these voice activated controls would help greatly, we would love to  be your preferred plumber on the spot to install the Kohler Konnect system here and check up with you after of few weeks of use to see how it works out for you.  Give us a call at (323) 992-6477, we would love to hear from you.

 

The post iPhone Connected Bathroom And Kitchen Fixtures From Kohler? appeared first on Rocket Plumbing California.