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Which is better hot water heater or tankless?

Tankless water heater on a wall

Choosing the right water heater for you

Let’s talk about tankless water heaters. How does a tankless water heater work if it doesn’t have a tank? A tankless water heater heats water directly with either an electric element or a gas burner, same as with a traditional water heater. The difference is the tankless water heats the cold water as soon as it arrives in the unit; it doesn’t have to store the water in a tank and heat it up before sending on to the faucet.

You know how you get ready to take a shower on Sunday evening after working in the yard all day, only to be hit by cold water? Because everyone else has bathed, somebody has been doing laundry and washing dishes, there is no hot water in the water heater tank. A tankless water heater delivers a constant hot water supply, so you never have that happen again.

Can you run out of hot water with a tankless water heater?

Before that question can be answered, an explanation about how a tankless water heater system works is needed. The conventional storage tank water heater system does just that: It stores water at a high temperature until you need it. The downside to that is when all that water in the tank is gone, more water needs to heat. That takes a while whether you have an electric water heater or gas water heater. 

The tankless water heater system doesn’t have a tank full of water to keep hot or heat. It heats upon demand as soon as it detects movement of water in the water lines. The heat exchanger kicks in and heats that water that very moment and will keep heating water until the faucet is turned off.

So, to answer that question, can you run out of hot water with a tankless water heater? No, unless the water is turned off, no, you will not run out of hot water with a tankless water heater system.

Can a tankless water heater fill a tub?

Well, it depends on a few things.  How big of a tub do you have? Are there other appliances using hot water at the same time? Do you have the tub faucet on full blast? What size of unit is your tankless water heater?

You won’t run out of hot water because the tankless water heater isn’t heating up the water. You’ll have an endless supply of hot water with the tankless water heater system.  Allow us to further explain: If two people are showering, the dishwasher or washing machine are all running simultaneously, a tankless water heater won’t be able to keep up, and lukewarm water is the result. There are solutions for this scenario:

  • Buy a larger tankless water heater unit that will put out more heat.
  • Stagger your hot water needs like showers, washing clothes or dishes by a few minutes.
  • But two tankless water heater units.

So, yes, you can fill that bathtub up with hot bubble water! Just don’t run other hot water appliances at the same time. To further clarify, you can fill an oversized bathtub when you have a tankless water heater, but not when another appliance or fixture is using hot water. Turn the faucet force down too will help the system keep hot water coming because you’ll be putting less force on it. Before you buy a tankless water heater, make sure you’re getting the size that is appropriate for your family’s needs and usage.

Where should a tankless water heater be installed?

Install your tankless water heater anywhere inside your home. They are small compared to the conventional water heaters, making them unobtrusive. They can fit in a pantry, under a sink or under stairs, almost anywhere that is out of your way, even outside, but yet easy to get to for maintenance.

Tankless water heater works best when it is closest to the appliances and faucets that will need hot water the most often. If the bathroom is where you use the most hot water, then have it installed near the bathroom. The further away from the places you’ll use it, the less efficient it will be. Homeowners often find that having more than one tankless water heater installed, placing them in zones, gives them the ultimate performance.

 Installing a tankless water heater outdoor is okay in a mild climate that doesn’t see winters below freezing. If you must install it outside, makes sure it has a 12 inch clearance away from any door or window and have an outdoor vent cap installed on the unit.

Do not install a tankless water heater near air vents or dryer vents and if the installation is between building, it will need a two foot clearance. Never install a tankless water heater near a window or across from a door or window that is facing a wall. If installing your tankless water heater above pavement, it should be vented seven feet above.

How long do tankless water heaters last?

Like any appliance in your home, maintenance is key to having a long lifespan from your tankless water heater. With proper maintenance as instructed by the manufacturer, you can expect your unit to last twenty years. They have parts that are easily replaced when needed that can extend their lifespan.

tankless water heater installed on wall

Is a tankless water heater worth it?

The tankless water heater benefits may not be a lengthy list, but they are powerful in their benefits:

  • Energy efficiency is a money saver over time
  • A longer lifespan than conventional water heaters with tanks – as much as double the lifespan
  • They take up less space than the conventional water heater
  • With proper size and planning, they provide unlimited hot water on demand versus the time it takes a conventional water heater to heat the water inside the tank

There are few caveats with the tankless water heater that you should consider before making this investment.  A tankless water heater with pump for recirculating the water is available already in the system or can be added on later. They can increase the price by as much as a $400, but if you’re making the investment, it may be worth it for your household. The purpose of a recirculation pump is to keep the water continuously circulating, returning it to the tank to be heated again. This definitely minimizes the energy efficiency of the unit, but it will keep the water hot. 

A tankless water heater without water softener may not last as long as one with a water softener installed, but the same is to be said of the conventional water heater. A water softener improves the water supply to keep the tank or tankless water heater from becoming corroded with mineral deposits that are found in water. Call 817-244-4370 today for your tankless water heater installation in Fort Worth, TX.

Is Plumbing an Emergency?

plumbing emergency

What are the most common plumbing problems?

Certain plumbing issues can be considered an emergency, if you want to categorize it, there are certain qualifications that would define an emergency from a regular plumbing problem. While some can be prevented, others tend to have to do with age or insufficient services provided like installation and repair. Here are some of the most common problems that plumbers face daily: 

  • Leaking: Leaks in pipes and faucets lose homeowners an exorbitant amount of money yearly because their water is constantly running through leaks. 
  • Clogged drains: When your drain is clogged, you end up not being able to use the devices like your toilet, bathtub, and shower. Sometimes the homeowner can fix it, but when convenient methods fail plumbers can always do the trick. 
  • Constant running: Just like leaking pipes and faucet, a constantly running toilet will waste the homeowner tons of money as long as it occurs. 
  • Water pressure: When your water pressure is down house-wide, there are several problems that could be the cause of the issue. 
  • Water heater issues: The water heater is made up of several parts that deliver to you refreshing hot water. When one malfunction, the entire system can be subject to any number of issues.

When one of these problems arises, there tends to be an agreed-upon understanding on what can wait and what is bad. A toilet for example, if you have multiple toilets in your home, it may not be an emergency to fix it, but if it is the only one in your home then it can be considered a plumbing emergency. In more urgent examples, if your piping, drains, or toilets are creating enough water to damage your property and perhaps endanger you, it may be considered an emergency plumbing. When you need emergency plumbing repair in Fort Worth, TX, trust S.W.A.T. Plumbing LLC to take care of it. Call 817-244-4370 today to schedule your appointment and speak to one of our plumbers today.

What is considered a plumbing emergency?

When you feel you have a plumbing emergency and need emergency plumbing, you understand the need for immediate action. It could be that you no longer have running water or that the water won’t stop running and begins to cause havoc in your home. Specifically, immediate concerns can include examples like:

  • Soon to be bursting pipes: When a pipe bursts, there is an immediate effect that causes destruction to property.
  • Water shut off failure: Water shut off valves help in maintaining your water system, when it fails it has a definite impact. 
  • Sewer back up: Sewage exudes harmful gases and chemicals that can be harmful to a person. 
  • Sump pump failure: Generally in basements or parts of the home water system, the sump pump is designed to keep homes from flooding especially during storms.

When a plumbing system needs to be fixed urgently, plumbers can come out as fast as they are capable to apply repairs. The general time the procedure tends to vary but can be from half an hour to three hours depending on the quick fix needed. When a plumber comes out to make an emergency repair, they come with the intention to get it fixed as fast as possible and will help you with future steps for longer lasting maintenance.

When should you call a plumber for a clogged drain?

As mentioned, emergency plumbing tends to come with signs that make the situation one that urgently needs to be fixed. Additionally to signs that the emergency could cause you damage and/or harm to your health. However,  there are signs you could catch before the situation becomes bad. Take plumbing for example, you could catch these signs and call a plumber before the system gets progressively worse:

  • Recurring clogs
  • Gurgling
  • Foul smell
  • Clogging around the home
  • Slow water drain

When it comes to clogging drains specifically, these signs are can be easily seen before a plumbing emergency occurs in your home. So when it comes to repairing these and piping, augers or plumbing snakes are generally used to solve the problems. The process of fixing the issue tends to include cutting off the connection, chemicals that break down blockages, and then drain the cut off the system so it’s assumed that it works.

plumbing emergency

Is a clogged toilet a maintenance emergency?

As mentioned, a clogged toilet can be an emergency depending on the context. When it’s overflowing and causing damages, yes it is an emergency. In the same sense, if it is your only toilet, it can also require emergency plumbing because you are left without a toilet. However, what has only barely been mentioned thus far is when you have a backup and notice a foul smell with what’s coming back up. When your sewage backs up, you can be subject to toxic gasses that are developed in sewage. For your health, you will need emergency plumbing to solve the problem because it will cause much more damage than a regular overflow. S.W.A.T. Plumbing LLC is the perfect company to help from our main location in Fort Worth, TX. Call 817-244-4370 today to schedule your appointment and get your emergency plumbing. 

What is Plumbing Maintenance?

Young plumber with adjustable wrench collage background.

Learn More About Plumbing Maintenance

Your plumbing system comprises of a number of areas that need to be paid attention to every so often so that proper performance can be maintained. In order to ensure proper system compliance and behavior, plumbing maintenance duties will have to be implemented periodically, if not, you may see repair bills lining up in the near future. With plumbing maintenance, it’s important to know where to address an issue and know what to do. Often times, certain tasks can be DIY, yet certain areas like with gas fixtures or more severe problems like with rusted pipes must be handled by a trained professional. Make sure to contact your local plumber for assistance with plumbing maintenance if need be. Until then, here is some helpful information regarding plumbing maintenance that may prove of use to you.

What are the eight main areas of plumbing?

The eight main areas of plumbing maintenance involve gas fitting, drainage, water supply, fire protection, sanitary, irrigation, and mechanical services involving heating, cooling, and ventilation.

What do maintenance plumbers do?

Plumbing maintenance with a skilled professional plumber will involve working with gas, sewer stations, water, water wells, irrigation and duties related to these areas. Repair, maintenance, installation or replacement services can be implemented depending on the situation.

How do I maintain my plumbing system?

Plumbing maintenance can be implemented by paying attention to various scenarios having to do with your plumbing lines and fixtures. Certain behaviors can be common or expected with certain areas so as long as you pay attention to any changes or developments you’ll have your plumbing maintenance down. Leaks, for example, tend to occur with faucets and showerheads when connections aren’t right or washers are worn. Slow drains can happen with showers and kitchen sinks due to common clogs with hair or garbage disposals respectively. 

How often should you clean your plumbing pipes?

Plumbing maintenance with cleaning pipes will depend on the age of your pipes as well as piping materials. However, if you want to avoid sewer backups it’s best to schedule cleaning every 18-22 months. It’s important to have maintenance duties performed sooner rather than later as unaddressed plumbing problems can become major repairs if they go undetected for some time.

How do you maintain drain pipes?

One way you can undergo plumbing maintenance with your drain pipes is to pour a homemade solution down them. It will involve hot water, baking soda, vinegar, and more hot water. First, you will run hot water through the sink, afterward throw a handful of baking soda down the drain and follow that up with hot water as well. Next, pour a cup of vinegar down the drain and allow that to sit for half an hour. Once the time has passed, pour down more hot water down the drain to flush out anything that has loosened in the pipeline.

How do I keep my outside drains clear?

Plumbing maintenance with clearing outside drains can be handled by using a grate with a fine screen under it. This fine screen will be enough to keep debris like leaves out while not being too fine to restrict the flow of water down the drain. Using a screen can be done with roof drains as well yet for both make sure to clean what was caught periodically so there are no obstructions before heavy rainstorms hit.

What breaks down grease in pipes?

For plumbing maintenance involving breaking down grease in pipes consider pouring a mixture of a pound of powder detergent with three gallons of boiling water. Make sure to hold the container close to the drain and pour slowly to prevent scalding reactions. Baking soda with vinegar and hot water can also be used for this plumbing maintenance duty as well. Finally, you can also use salt with baking soda to dissolve the grease clog. 

How do plumbers clean pipes?

Plumbers will typically use technology such as a pressure hose that will snake down the line and tackle debris with its nozzle. Water blasts out at an angle from the side and directly in front to create a path of movement. Plumbing maintenance with this tool will allow enough pressure to wash away obstructions on the drainpipe walls.

Plumber with plumbing tools on the kitchen.

How do you prevent plumbing problems?

  • Avoid Disposing Things You Shouldn’t Down Drains or Toilets
  • Apply Drain Screens
  • Incorporate Monthly Drain Treatments
  • Don’t Crank-Shut Faucet Handles
  • Apply Washing Machine Hose Screens

What is considered a plumbing emergency?

Plumbing emergencies can show up in many forms and can range in severity. Clogged drains, gas leaks and damaged pipes are common plumbing emergencies that can occur which require immediate attention. Implementing periodic plumbing maintenance duties can avoid plumbing emergencies from happening as they will tackle the issues at their beginning stages before they progress to larger issues.

Contact Your Local Plumbers For Help

When you’re in need of plumbing maintenance get in touch with your local plumbing company for assistance. Plumbing maintenance with a professional plumber will allow for a thorough job that will protect your lines throughout the seasons. It’s important to implement plumbing maintenance duties periodically so that you can avoid larger issues from arising from previously smaller ones. Improve on your plumbing lines and get plumbing maintenance today.

If you require assistance with plumbing maintenance in Fort Worth, TX call 817-244-4370 with S.W.A.T. Plumbing LLC!

How Do You Clean a Drain?

drain

How to Clean a Drain?

Have you ever wondered about the ways to clean a drain in your home? Sure, it can be a tedious task and not the most pleasant, but we’re going to discuss how to clean your drains at home. Let’s dive in.

How to Clean Drains Naturally?

Many people ask: “What can I pour down my drain to unclog?” 

Well, there are a few “natural” ways to unclog a drain and drain cleaning at home. Most of which use ingredients from your cupboard. But remember, if this doesn’t work, it may be time to call an expert to come to inspect your drain system and check for blockages. 

If your system is blocked or backed up, a natural solution will do nothing for you and in the long-run, cause some serious damage.

Some of the ways you can naturally unclog your drain include:

  • Using a combination of baking soda and vinegar
  • A mix of baking soda and lemon juice
  • Baking soda and salt
  • A combination of baking soda, salt, and cream of tartar

Most of these combinations will use 2 parts water and 1 part of baking soda or half when combined with other ingredients. 

Will Bleach Unclog a Drain?

One very popular way to try and unclog your drains is by using bleach. Plus, bleach is a known bacteria killer and odor neutralizer. 

In general, diluted bleach is ok to use in moderation. It will definitely disinfect your drain but will not UNCLOG it. The mixture of bleach and water is great for cleaning your drain and flushing out any debris. However, things can get tricky because bleach will not unclog the drain. It’s great for sanitation and killing horrible smelly germs, but that is it.

For drain cleaning and plumbing you may need to call a professional like the ones in our Swat team for more information and services.

What do Plumbers Use to Unclog Drains?

Most plumbers will use specialized equipment to unclog your property’s drains. Some of these include a manual drain snake, which is a small auger that rotates and is pushed through the clog. 

Another tool includes a motorized drain snake. This handy tool is brought in when the manual drain snake doesn’t work. This will most likely be used in the sewer port outside the home. This tool extends to 150 feet and clears larger clogs.

In other cases, plumbers will use a hydro-jetting machine, which is used when none of the above works. This will also include a video inspection of the sewer lines. 

Drain Cleaning Bacteria

If you’re experiencing the terrible odors coming from your drains, there are a few cleaners that you can use in order to get rid of the odors attacking you every time you pass by.

However, we have a very important recommendation for you. Don’t use chemical drain cleaners. It may seem a bit mundane, but there is a lot of truth in this. Chemical drain cleaners will eat through your pipes. In the long-run (and short-run if your pipes are older) it will cause huge damages including cracks, leaks and complete corrosion of piping.

The best option is to use bio drain cleaners. This is nothing like the chemical products that people are used to purchasing. It will not by any means cause the expensive damages chemical cleaners will. 

Bio cleaners are different products. They are safe to use in your home and will definitely provide the results you are looking for when cleaning your drain. This is the best “chemical” to unclog drains.

Drain Cleaning Equipment

If you are interested in purchasing some drain cleaning equipment for yourself, we’d be happy to make a few recommendations. So that you count on the right equipment that will not harm your piping and will unblock and unclog your drain successfully. It’s smart to have some of these handy for removing and loosening the top of the drain, as well as the basic resources to access the clog.

Some of the standard tools include the following:

  • Snake: This is the most flexible drain cleaning tool. It is a long- tube-like tool that is used to push through blockages. It has a grip handle for you to hold and push down the drain. 
  • Plunger: You know plungers and most likely already own one. These are great to suction and release backups. These come in many sizes and you can find the best for your drain in any home improvement store.
  • Wire Brush: These small wire brushes are used to clean the gunk after you removed blockages from the drain. They are combined with the use of soap and hot water and are similar to toothbrushes.

Final Thoughts

If you need professional help for unclogging your drains and avoid damage, contact us today at 817-244-4370! We look forward to hearing from you.