Tips: Self Help:

Noisy Pipes

Frozen Pipes - How To Thaw Them

Clogged Drains

Hot Water Tank Maintenance


  • Banging Pipes
    • Loud pipes can be caused by a few different reasons.   When you turn your water on do the pipes bang?  If so, you may have loose straps or even air pockets trapped.  Look at the anchors, they should be no further 6 to 8 feet apart for horizontal runs and 8 to 10 feet apart for vertical runs.  You may need to add some straps to stop the banging.  When you add a strap, make sure you leave room for expansion.
    • DO NOT USE galvanized straps on copper pipes!
    • If your hot water pipes squeak, they may need cushioned at the straps.


  • Frozen Pipes
    • The first thing you need to do is locate the main shut off vale and close it, then open the closest faucet to the frozen pipe so it can drain as the pipe thaws.
    • You may want to take measures to prevent water damage incase leaks occur.  You can use buckets, drop cloths and or plastic.
    • Any of the following methods is acceptable to thaw pipes. use what you have at your disposal or what you feel comfortable using. Thawing should be done gradually.
      • Propane Torch - a torch will work quickly but can be dangerous.  USE WITH CAUTION!
      • A Hair Dryer will slowly and safely defrost the lines.
      • An Electric Heating Pad sold at most home improvement centers will not only defrost but left in place will prevent future freezing.
      • If you have none of the above, try pouring hot boiling water continuously over the pipe, eventually it will work.

  • Clogged Drains
    • Toilet Clogs can usually be handled pretty easily:
      • Clogs tend to happen in the built in trap in the toilet.
      • First try a plunger, it may take several attempts.
      • If that fails, try an auger.  you can usually rent these from a home improvement store or local rental facility.
      • If that fails call us 412-931-2255
    • Sink Drain Clog:
      • This can present a bit more of a challenge but may also be handled by you.
      • Again you can try the plunger first.
      • If this doesn't work, try a liquid drain opener product.
      • If this doesn't work, you may need to take the trap apart under the sink.  If you're not comfortable doing this, give us a call.  A trap that ends to be a leak can be more costly than a service call.


  • Hot Water Heater Tank Maintenance:
    • Hot water tanks over time will inevitably end up with a build up of sediment at the bottom of the tank.  You should periodically have the tank inspected to prevent unexpected failure.  If you have a Soft Water System you will get a much longer life out of your hot water tank.



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