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acadian plumbingEvery season presents issues for homeowners and Fall is no exception.  But there are some things that just shouldn’t be DIY’ed.  Take a closer look here at some plumbing issues that can be handled for you easily by a professional plumber, saving you money in the long run.

 

1) Blocked Drains:  As the leaves begin to fall, they cause a big mess in your sub-surface drainage system.   Wind, rain, and even traffic cause leaves to be blown into your home’s sub-surface drains, especially if you are unaware that your drain covers are damaged.   Call a professional plumber to have your sub-surface drainage system thoroughly checked.  Drain covers are often manufactured to fit a particular drain, consequently these should be measured and installed professionally.

2)  Water Heater:  As the ground cools, the water coming into your home cools as well.  Your water heater will need to work at double its capacity to heat the cold water.  The chances of your water heater failing increases as the temperature decreases.  Call a professional plumber to check and inspect your water heater to ensure hot water all winter long.
3)  Damaged/Broken Pipes:    When the water freezes and expands, pipes can crack or burst.  The best solution here is prevention.  Calling a professional plumber ensures that your pipes are insulated properly, from Styrofoam faucet covers to insulating pipe sleeves.
It often costs more money to fix damage from botched DIY jobs than it does to hire a professional plumber to do the job in the first place.  Acadian Plumbing’s employees have years of experience, giving them the insight and knowledge to tackle all of your plumbing needs, no matter the season.Acadian Plumbing


With Spring right around the corner, many people begin the process of sprucing up their yards and homes from the winter.  Don’t forget to check your plumbing!  Taking a few minutes in the Spring to check for problems can limit water damage and expensive repairs.  Take a look at our list for a few ideas.

 

dripping faucet1) Check for leaks:

When you are unwrapping your pipes from the winter, it’s a good idea to take a look around and check for any possible leaks.  Look for drips, condensation, and water pooling in areas outside.  Check the exposed pipes under sinks for leaks.  Check the hoses that run to your dishwasher and washing machine, looking for any weaknesses in the hose.  Also keep an eye in these areas for moisture, puddles, rust, or corrosion.  Check the faucets both inside and outside your home for any drips or leaks.  And don’t forget the toilet!  Look around the base of the toilet for water.  Add a few drops of food coloring to the tank.  If the tank is leaking, the color will appear inside the bowl within about 30 minutes.

 

2) Look after your water heater:water heater

You may have turned up the temperature on your water heater to help combat the cold of winter, but professionals recommend keeping your water heater set at 120 degrees.  This helps conserve energy and prevent scalding.  Check your water heater unit for signs of corrosion, rust, or soot around the control panel.  Look for leaks or puddles.  It is a good idea to drain several gallons from your water heater tank to help flush corrosion-causing sediment.  This will improve your water heater’s efficiency and help lengthen your heater’s life.  Make sure to check with the manufacturer for specific instructions on this procedure for your specific make and model water heater.  Many water heaters only last approximately 10 years.  If your water heater is older, have it checked by a professional plumber to ensure safety. (The first 4 numbers in your heater’s serial number indicate the month and year of manufacture.)

 

sprinkler lawn3) Sprinkler lines:

Spring is a time when many people use sprinklers to help bring their lawns back to lush growth after winter.  Check your outdoor pipes, faucets, valves, and hose bibs for signs of water leaks.

 

 

 

These are just a few ideas to help you maintain your home plumbing system.  Here at Acadian Plumbing, we can help with all of these services, and much more.  If you have a plumbing concern, don’t delay.  Call Acadian Plumbing at 504-466-7809 to find out how we can help you with all your residential or commercial plumbing needs.

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We continue our examination of ancient plumbing techniques by looking to the most well-known and influential civilizations: the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans.

 

Ancient Egypt 2500 BCE
baths of Kom el Dikka
The baths of Kom el Dikka, Egypt

The ancient Egyptians created the first copper pipes.  Because water was scarce, the Egyptians dug wells that were up to 300 feet deep.  Crop irrigation used a complex system of canals, dams, and sluices.  Water wheels were invented in ancient Egypt and used in conjunction with shadufs to raise water from the wells and to irrigate their crops.  There were many public bathhouses, as well as private bathhouses for the wealthy.  The ancient Egyptians went so far as to build functional bathrooms for their dead.

 

 

Minoan fountain at Delos
Minoan fountain at Delos
Ancient Crete/Minoa 3000 BCE – 1000 BCE

Bathrooms in the royal palace had hot and cold running water, as well as ceramic bathtubs.   Terra cotta pipes used in their drainage systems enabled odors to be siphoned away from the latrines.  Open top channel systems drained storm water into the sewers.  The first flushing toilets used rain water collected in cisterns.

 

 

 

Ancient Greece 500 BCE – 300 BCE
bathtub at Nestor's palace
bathtub at Nestor’s palace, near Pylos, Greece

The Greeks improved many of the Minoan inventions and helped to make them part of everyday life.  Hot and cold running water and bathtubs were commonplace, provided by aqueducts.  Overhead pipes and shower heads installed at the site of the Olympic Games enabled athletes to shower.

 

 

Ancient Roman aqueduct
Ancient Roman aqueduct
Ancient Rome 800 BCE – 300 CE

The term “plumbing” actually originated with the Romans.  Plumus in Latin means lead.   The Romans used lead for their pipe work.  These pipes took water from the mountains and carried it underground into the Roman cities.  Lead pipes carried water into the Roman baths.  These pipes provided hot water heated by wood furnaces.  The bath houses also had elaborate steam rooms.  Lead pipes carried waste water into the Tiber River.  There were public latrines, in addition to the public bath houses.  Some of the aqueducts built by the Romans are still in use today.  In fact, the famed Trevi fountain in Rome is still fed by aqueduct water.

The Romans represented the high point of ancient plumbing technology.  With the fall of the Roman Empire in 410 CE came a standstill in plumbing technology for many, many years.

Roman lead pipe Ostia Antica
Roman lead pipe Ostia Antica

 

Don’t let your plumbing come to standstill!!  Call Acadian Plumbing and let us keep your pipes flowing!

 

 

Sources: https://www.qssupplies.co.uk/history-of-plumbing-timeline.html, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plumbing#History, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhkxD6bD2AY, https://egypt.mrdonn.org/irrigation.html, https://www.plumbingsupply.com/pmegypt.html, https://www.metrorod.co.uk/news/ancient-history-plumbing-sewers/, https://www.copper.org/publications/newsletters/discover/2005/march/article2.html, http://www.romanaqueducts.info/q&a/11stillinuse.htm



As a general rule, you probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about functional bathrooms or ancient plumbing innovations.  But indoor plumbing has a longer history than you might think.  In fact, the history of plumbing goes back to ancient times.

 

Ancient Pakistan/India
a drain at Lothal, India
a drain at Lothal, India

The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization found in South Asia, lasting from 3300 BCE until 1300 BCE.  Standardized earthen pipe systems found in their urban settlements are one of the earliest examples of ancient plumbing.  Wells within buildings and drains in the floors of bathing areas are some early innovations.  In addition, they had bathrooms with septic tanks, very similar to modern day bathrooms.

 

Ancient China

Earthen pipes used as part of sewer systems helped with both rain water and waste water in Chinese cities as far back as 4000 years ago.  Similarly, hollow bamboo reed carried fresh water to and from ancient salt mines.

Ancient Mesopotamia
Shaduf
Shaduf

The city of Babylon was one of the most magnificent cities of ancient times.  King Nebuchadnezzar II, around 600 BCE, had an extravagant palace with separate bathrooms and elaborate drainage.  He even had latrines with raised seats all connected to a covered sewage system.  One of the Ancient Wonders of the World is the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, reputed to belong of King Nebuchadnezzar II.  While the location of the Gardens remains disputed, there are numerous accounts of the Gardens themselves, as well as gardens throughout the region.  All of these gardens would have needed an extensive irrigation system to deliver water to the gardens from a nearby water source.  A combination of canals, dikes, pipes, and shadufs (a wooden beam with a fulcrum and a bucket on one end used to lift water to elevated troughs) were used to deliver water where it was needed.

Many of these ancient plumbing systems have crumbled with time and are no longer functional.  Let Acadian Plumbing help you keep your plumbing system in top condition.  Call us today for all of your plumbing needs.

 

 

Sources: https://www.qssupplies.co.uk/history-of-plumbing-timeline.html, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plumbing#History, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhkxD6bD2AY, https://www.ancient.eu/Hanging_Gardens_of_Babylon/, http://www.waterencyclopedia.com/Hy-La/Irrigation-Systems-Ancient.html



It’s summer…the kids are out of school…vacations are planned…..and the last thing you need are plumbing woes!  While plumbing problems can strike at any time, there are certain issues that seem to be more common in the summer months.  Here are a few plumbing issues that appear to be more common in the summertime.

 

  1. Washing Machine: Ahhh, summer days in the sand or the pool!!  Ball games, outdoor cookouts, and more!  All things we enjoy during the summer and all things that are guaranteed to increase your laundry.  When doing laundry, make sure to stay close to home so that if there are any problems, you can catch them quickly.  Move your machine slightly away from the wall to keep the water hose from kinking.  Speaking of the water hose, make to sure periodically examine them for leaks, cracks, or bulges.  And remember, the larger the load, the harder the machine has to work.  Keep to smaller load sizes to help avoid blockages which can lead to messy overflows.
  2. Drains: Drains are not designed to handle large amounts of sand, gravel, mud, or sea shells.  Make sure to hose off outdoors when coming in from the beach and to knock off debris from your clothes before washing.  Avoid bathing pets in the bathtub or make sure to trap fur and debris before it goes down the drain.  Your pipes will thank you.
  3. Sewer lines: Your sewer lines are probably the last thing on your mind most days, much less during the summer, but summer can be hard on your sewer lines too.  Heavy thunderstorms can cause the ground to become supersaturated.  This brings loose soil into pipes through small cracks, which in turn causes blockages, broken pipes, and causes sewer lines to back up into the house.  Also as tree roots search for water underground, they can cause damage and blockages to underground pipes.  On the opposite side, lack of rain can cause soil subsidence which causes underground pipes to sag and eventually break.  Video inspection of your pipes can keep you informed of the health of your plumbing.

 

These are just some of the issues that face your plumbing during the summer months.  A little home maintenance and attention is all it takes to avoid most of these issues.  But sometimes the job is bigger than you can handle on your own.  Acadian Plumbing is ready to assist you with all of your plumbing problems–large and small.  Call us today!!

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