What Does a Gas Plumber Do?

What Does a Gas Plumber Do?

Throughout most of history human beings struggled to keep their homes warm throughout the winter and cool in the summer.  Modern HVAC systems really are a blessing, if it is too cold we just turn a dial and in a few minutes your home is comfortable.  There are all kinds of ways to heat your house but one of the most affordable and increasingly common is through natural gas.  When it comes to natural gas and gas lines in your home you need a gas plumber to handle that.  So…what does a gas plumber do exactly?  Let’s have a look.

What Does a Gas Plumber Do?

If you asked the average homeowner what a gas plumber does they would be pretty hard pressed to tell you.  When they think plumbing they think of water and not gas, that is a common misconception.  Gas, especially natural gas also comes into your home through pipes and they are maintained by a plumber with special training in working with gas.

There are plenty of home owners that consider themselves fairly handy and is willing to try and fix anything that goes wrong in their home.  While that’s great and can save you a fortune over the years but you don’t even try when it comes to gas.  There are very few things in your home as dangerous as the gas lines.  Proper working gas lines are perfectly safe, but if you mess around and do something wrong because you don’t know any better, you can not only damage your home and family but the entire neighborhood as well.

Here is what a gas plumber can fix for you:

  1. New gas appliances: This is one of the more common reasons to bring in a gas plumber. Homeowners that love to cook, often trade in their electrical stove for a gas range.  Stoves aren’t the only gas driven appliance, getting a gas dryer is another option.
  2. Your water heater: Most water heaters in the home actually run on natural gas. When it comes time to install or replace your water heater then you need someone that is qualified to do so.  If you have purchased an older home then you may also want a gas plumber to come and look at the water heater to make sure it complies with current building codes.
  3. Outdoor Kitchens: If your ideal summer is spending it with family and friends cooking on the grill then the last thing you want to do is run out of gas.  A gas plumber can run a gas line directly to the grill and your summer will be perfect.
  4. Gas Fireplace: There is nothing cozier than sitting around the fire on a cold winter night.  Today most fireplaces are gas rather than wood, to install and maintain them you will need a gas plumber.
  5. Problems with your gas line: Last but definitely not least is problems with the gas lines in your home. Gas leaks are indicated by a rotten egg smell and if that happens leave your home and call your gas plumber right away.  Natural gas can be dangerous, leave it to the professionals to handle it.

Now that you know what a gas plumber does and when you need to call one.  Never hesitate when it comes to natural gas, while it is safe 99% of the time it is that 1% you need to be careful of.

Is it Time to Replace Your Plumbing?

Is it Time to Replace Your Plumbing?

When your plumbing breaks down it causes problems well beyond just a broken or clogged pipe.  Plumbing problems like leaks can lead to damaged furnishings as well as the structure.  Clogs can lead to sewer backups and toxic waste in your living space.  Your plumbing can fail for a number of reasons, freezing pipes, poor installation and most commonly from age.  This begs the questions, is it time to replace your plumbing?  Let’s look at the lifespan of your pipes and what causes plumbing to fail.

What are Your Pipes Made From?

The pipes in your house could be made from a variety of materials depending on the age of your home and how long it has been since the plumbing was replaced.  Typically when you buy your home and have it inspected the inspection report will tell what type of plumbing has been used.  Each type of piping material has its own lifespan and they may determine if you need to replace the plumbing.  For instance, brass and copper will both last somewhere between 40-50 years, whereas galvanized steel lasts about 30 years.  Cast iron piping can last up to 100 years and modern PVC piping can last forever.

While at first glance you might think, my pipes will last long enough they don’t need to be replaced but that is not the only issue.  You also need to take into account the other parts of your plumbing like the joints, mechanical parts and the fixtures in your home.  Leaks and water backups can happen regardless of the age of your pipes or the material they are made from.

Your Plumbing is Failing

Two of the most obvious signs that you have plumbing problems are clogs and leaks.  You may even be able to see cracks in the pipe or you will find leaks near your sink, dishwasher or tub.  You may find the floor warped or water stains in your ceiling or floor.  You may also notice low water pressure that can mean you have a crack in the pipes coming into your home.

Clogs are noticeable when your tub or sink is very slow to drain, you may even hear gurgling that indicates there is air getting trapped in your pipes.  You can grab a plumbing snake at your local hardware store and try and clear out the clog.  When that doesn’t work it is time to call a plumber to find and remedy the clogged pipes.

Repair or Replace Your Plumbing

Removing clogs and replacing taps and things is normal homeowner maintenance and for the most part you don’t need a plumber.  These are projects you can easily handle on your own.  Big problems tend to be less visible, you will have clogs that are in the pipes underground or behind a wall.  When or if that time comes then you can speak with a plumber about replacing the pipes.

If you plan on doing a major renovation to your bathroom or kitchen that is another time to consider replacing any outdated piping.  If you already have the walls open then you can inspect the joints and see what should be replaced.