10-29-21 Newsletter – Sobieski Services | DE, NJ, PA, MD
Don't let replacing your system scare you!
Is Your Plumbing Ready for the Holidays?

When the holidays roll around, making sure your guests are comfortable is high on your list. Some of the things that can hinder a nice visit are clogged toilets, running out of hot water, and broken garbage disposals.

While some of us may be traveling to visit relatives, the rest of us will be hosting the celebration. When you are spending time with family and friends, the last thing you want to deal with is a plumbing emergency.

The best way to prevent plumbing problems for the holidays is by scheduling a plumbing tune-up from a certified professional. Contact Sobieski Services for comprehensive plumbing tune-ups and 24/7 emergency service in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.

Learn how to prevent plumbing problems over the holidays with these tips and tricks:

Get Your Bathroom Ready

Residential toilets are pretty simple, but there are a number of problems that could arise. Whether it’s a slight leak or a more serious issue, it’s important to fix the problem before your guests arrive. If you cannot fix the toilet yourself, contact a plumber right way to prevent future damage and avoid a plumbing disaster.

Common toilet problems include:

  • Trouble flushing waste in a single flush
  • Frequent clogs
  • Loud sounds
  • Water leaking from the tank into the toilet bowl
  • Cracks in any part of the toilet
  • A wobbly toilet
  • Water that runs continuously

Here are some ways you can maintain a clean, functioning toilet through the holidays:

  • Clean the entire bathroom and toilet. Consider cleaning the rim jets inside your toilet bowl. Use a handheld mirror to see where they are located, then clean them out with a wire hanger.
  • Switch to single-ply toilet paper. Your guests are used to their own toilets and may use more toilet paper than you do. The plush two-, three-, and four-ply varieties take longer to break down and are the cause of many toilet clogs.
  • Stock up on toilet paper and other bathroom supplies. Make sure the toilet paper is easily accessible for your guests. You should also have toilet bowl cleaner, soap, and dry towels or disposable towels. Consider breath mints, lotion, tissues, and single-use floss as well.
  • Buy a quality plunger with an extension flange. Keep the plunger handy for your guests.
  • Remove anything you don’t want your guests to have access to, such as medications.
  • Fix a toilet that keeps running.
  • Make sure the water supply is opened all the way. You will get a better flush if your water supply is fully open. This is the silver knob located behind the toilet.

Prevent Garbage Disposal Problems

Garbage disposals get a lot of use over the holidays. You can help prevent garbage disposal problems for the holidays, by following these tips:

  • Consult your owner’s manual to learn proper operation steps and what can and cannot be put down a garbage disposal. As a general rule avoid putting any of these items in a garbage disposal or drain:
    • Fat, oil, or grease
    • Coffee grounds and eggshells
    • Large bones
    • Pasta
    • Oatmeal
    • Pits
    • Nuts and Shells
    • Trash and inorganic material
    • Fibrous vegetables
    • Potato peels
    • Corn husks
    • Paint
  • Don’t allow guests to use the garbage disposal. If you do enlist help with cleaning up the dishes, restrict it to one or two people and instruct them to scrape off dishes into the trash instead of the garbage disposal to be safe.
  • Grind some ice cubes and lime wedges to clean and freshen the disposal. Your garbage disposal may require more intense cleaning, but a quick way to freshen it up is by grinding some ice cubes and citrus wedges.

If your garbage disposal isn’t working, contact Sobieski Services for fast diagnosis and repair.

Maintain Your Drains

You can try to clear your drains with plungers, drain snakes, and a combination of ½ cup baking soda to ¼ cup white vinegar, but sometimes clogs require the services of a professional plumber. If you can’t clear your drains before the guests arrive, contact Sobieski Services for plumbing and drain services throughout Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.

To help prevent drain clogs, we recommend using mesh strainers for every shower, tub, and kitchen drain in your home. Strainers can prevent foreign or unwanted items from going down your drains, including hair, food, and even cotton balls and Q-tips (not to mention the occasional toy or Lego piece).

Learn more tips for clearing and preventing drain clogs.

Make Sure Water Heater Can Handle the Extra Load

You don’t want your guests to expect a nice, warm and toasty shower, only to be jolted by a strong burst of ice-cold water. If your home needs an inspection of your existing hot water heater system, the trained professionals at Sobieski Services can help.

If your hot water heater isn’t working efficiently, there are newer hot water heaters available that offer larger tanks, as well as offering outstanding energy efficiency to help save on your energy bills. One of the newer advancements is a tankless hot water heater that can provide instant hot water without the wait for traditional water heaters.

Have the professionals at Sobieski Services inspect your water heater before the holidays to help you plan for the extra guests and strain on your water heating system.

Sobieski Services Is On Call for the Holidays

Sobieski Services wants you to have a festive holiday season without having to worry about your home’s plumbing and heating systems. If you have followed these plumbing tips, but a problem still arises this December and you have a plumbing or heating emergency, the Sobieski team is on call 24/7 to meet your residential plumbing and heating needs.

Sobieski Services is available 24/7 for all your heating, cooling, and plumbing needs in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.


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Man opening vent
Tips to Keep your Systems Efficient this Fall!

Mid-Atlantic homeowners are busy tackling their fall maintenance chores, inside the home and out. Chief among those chores should be HVAC system maintenance. If you haven’t put it on your list, you should. Here are some tasks to complete before the worst winter weather arrives, so that your furnace works efficiently and without problems throughout the heating season.

Change the Filter

Go ahead and schedule an appointment with your HVAC consultant to inspect your furnace and the other components of your HVAC system, but in the meantime, change your air filter. Changing the filter keeps the moving parts free of dirt. A dirty filter can also impede airflow, causing the system to strain and work less efficiently. Change your filter regularly. If you’re not using a good quality air filter (minimum efficiency reporting value of 8-12), then consider an upgrade.

Furnace/HVAC System Checklist

If your furnace burns gas or oil, it has a heat exchanger, which should be checked every year for cracks and corrosion. Fuel-burning appliances may leak deadly carbon monoxide, so this is one task not to neglect. Also have the gas pressure tested, and the burners examined for soot buildup and corrosion. The burner flame should be blue, not yellow. The ignition system should also be inspected and tested, and cleaned if necessary.

Fall maintenance inspections should include testing the heating system’s thermostat, to ensure that set points are reached, and the controls, to make sure the heat cycles on and off properly.

Other tasks to be performed by a technician: Examine the blower assembly and clean the blower housing, wheel and motor.

Check electrical connections.

Replace faulty wiring.

Check condensate drain for holes and obstructions.

Lubricate any moving parts.

At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues – especially HVAC and plumbing issues – so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.

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