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When Is the Best Time to Replace Your Toilet?

When Is the Best Time to Replace Your Toilet?

The toilet is used daily but is often overlooked when remodeling or updating different parts of your home. Richardson Plumbing will provide you with a guide to know when it is time to replace your toilet.

Your Toilet Isn’t Working Properly

The first and most obvious reason to replace your toilet is if it is not working properly or if it requires too many repairs. If it needs to be fixed often or if you are frequently replacing parts it is time to replace it. If you weigh out the costs of continuous repairs and a new toilet you will usually find is it more cost effective to replace your toilet altogether. If it toilet requires plunging more than one time per week it may be time to replace it. Plunging and consistently fussing over your toilet can become a nuisance. If plunging it has become a daily or weekly aggravation it is time to replace your toilet.

It Is Cracked

If your toilet has scratches or cracks it may be time to replace it. Scratches in the toilet bowl will become harder and harder to maintain as they get larger. Many people find themselves scrubbing their toilets daily and finding they still don’t look clean. A toilet with many scratches should be replaced to save you time and money with maintenance. If your toilet has cracks it does not only look unattractive but it can also result in a huge mess. Cracks can lead to serious damage causing leaks. It is best to replace your cracked toilet before it breaks and becomes a bigger issue. If the location of the crack is in the actual toilet bowl, it is not quite as urgent but you should definitely keep an eye on it.

It Is Raising Your Water Bill

Sometimes your toilet can be the culprit for a high water bill. If you notice your water bill is high and it is not due to a pipe leak it may be time to replace your it. If you do not already have a low flush toilet you may want to replace your existing toilet to save water and money.

It Is Outdated

Your toilet should be comfortable and look nice as well. Let’s face it: the bathroom is not the most elegant of rooms in your home but it should look nice and sanitary. If your toilet does not look clean or up to date that is reason enough to replace it. While entertaining guests or simply having a few friends over you want them to feel comfortable using your restroom. If the toilet looks old or grimy someone may be hesitant to use it. Since you spend some time throughout the day in your bathroom you want to make it cozy. If your toilet is older, it most likely does not have the bells and whistles a newer model has. Newer styles are made differently to ensure complete convenience and comfort. Elongated bowls are available to make the seat easier to sit on and with different designs you have the option to have a higher or lower sitting toilet. This is great for people who have difficulty sitting or standing.

Call Richardson Plumbing today to replace your toilet! Our staff are friendly, knowledgeable and honest to give you the best possible experience.

 

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Handy Tricks for Detecting Water Leaks

Handy Tricks for Detecting Water Leaks

A water leak can become very costly very quickly. Just a small water leak is capable of wasting 6000 gallons of water. At Richardson Plumbing we give our customers excellent customer service and support which is why we will provide you with handy tricks for detecting water leaks.

The first and most simple way to check for water leaks is by checking your water meter. The first step is to turn off all of the water in your home. Make sure your washing machine and dish washer are not running. Once the water in your home is off you should no longer see a change in the meter. If you are watching the meter and it begins to change while your water is off you most likely have a big leak moving fast. If the water has not changed immediately there could still be a slower leak. Wait two hours and see if you notice a change, if there is a change it is typically due to a slower water leak. Both fast and slow water leaks should be repaired by a professional such as those at Richardson Plumbing, and preferably as soon as possible, because this could result in a large cost on your part.

It is important to check your water usage and monthly bill. Each month your bill should remain fairly close to the month before. If you are noticing a significant increase in your bill it may be due to a water leak. A large family may use more water than a smaller one, but every family should make sure their usage is within the normal limits. Checking your monthly water bill is a great and handy trick to monitor water use and detect water leaks.

Toilets generally account for up to 30 percent of your water usage. To check that your toilet is working properly you can use the food coloring trick. Add a few drops of food coloring into the toilet tank and wait ten minutes. After the ten minutes check to see if the color is still seen in the water of the toilet bowl. If you notice the food coloring has reached the toilet bowl without the toilet being flushed, you may have a problem. A leak can cause the colored water to flow from the tank to the bowl. Many times the best option is to have a professional assist you with these types of water leaks.

At Richardson Plumbing we want to make your life as stress free as possible by helping you detect leaks sooner rather than later. If you have already found a leak it is crucial to your home’s foundation that you get the problem fixed fast. At Richardson Plumbing we promise to give you quick and excellent service at a fair and honest price. We are family owned and family friendly and proudly service Northern KY and Cincinnati. If you find a water leak call our reliable, knowledgeable, and trustworthy professionals at Richardson Plumbing as soon as possible. We are experienced and happy to help with all your plumbing needs.

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Got a Clogged Toilet? We Can Help

Got a Clogged Toilet? We Can Help

Having a clogged toilet is both frustrating and messy. There are a few at home tricks and tips to think about and try, but sometimes the best option is to call a professional such as those at Richardson Plumbing.

The Plunger

Many times a plunger is the only tool you need to unclog the toilet from home. It is simple to place the plunger into the toilet and quickly relieve the clogged toilet. To avoid a mess it is best to be gentle with the first plunge. If you use too much force the air will push back into the plungers seal and cause water to blow all over the bathroom. Yuck! After the first gentle plunge it is time to get to work. Plunging vigorously fifteen to twenty times can sometimes be necessary to loosen the material clogging your toilet. It is crucial to ensure the plunger is fully submerged in water; this will generate the most pressure. If you find you must unclog the toilet with each use, there is most likely a bigger problem. Your toilet should work efficiently and not get clogged often. If this is a frequent problem in your home it may be time to call Richardson Plumbing.

The Snake

Most bathrooms are equipped with a plunger, but what about a snake? If you have tried using a plunger multiple times and failed, the next tool to attempt is the snake. A drain snake is a long wire coil with a tip that resembles a corkscrew. It can be purchased at many stores for around ten dollars. The snake is used to unblock your toilet in two simple steps. First feed the snake through the toilet pipes until you feel a slight increase in resistance. Next carefully turn clockwise to allow the tip of the snake to break through the debris. The drain snake is an excellent tool for clogged toilets but often it is still necessary to have a professional take a look. While the snake can work wonders for some toilets, it may not be enough for your clogged toilet.

Avoid clogged toilets

There are many ways to prevent your toilet from becoming clogged. Make sure everyone in your home is aware of the things that can and cannot be flushed. Sanitary wipes and feminine products are likely to be the culprit of a clogged toilet. Sometimes foreign objects are found in the pipes and most foreign objects found by plumbers are toys. It is essential to allow limited access to the restroom without supervision for young children.

Preventing clogged toilets is the way to go but sometimes accidents do happen. At Richardson Plumbing we are family owned and operated and proudly service Northern KY and Cincinnati. Our experts are experienced, friendly and professional and we pride ourselves on our many word of mouth referrals. At Richardson Plumbing our professionals ensure you get the best and quickest service possible at an honest price.

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Tips and Tricks for Preventing Pipe Damage

pipe damage

Plumbing and pipe damage can become inconvenient and expensive very quickly. At Richardson Plumbing our goal is to offer you the best possible service. This is why we provide you with tips and tricks for preventing pipe damage.

1. Only flush approved items

Do not flush anything down the toilet. Bulky items can cause a pipe to burst. Other hazardous items to your pipes include grease and other things that could cause a clogged system. Teach your children the proper things that can be flushed down the toilet to avoid big pipe problems.

2. Avoid frozen pipes

In colder areas, such as Kentucky in the winter, it is important to make sure your pipes do not freeze by making sure they are insulated properly. Freezing damage can be prevented very easily with a couple of simple tips and tricks. The first option is to leave your faucets running slowly, moving water through the pipes will usually prevent them from freezing. Keep your home warm and do not allow it to go below 32 degrees in the areas where pipes are located. By allowing warm air to enter into areas such as the garage and other unheated areas you can protect your pipes from the harsh cold weather. If your cabinets are left open it will allow warm air to surround the pipes, decreasing the risk of the pipes becoming frozen. Products like heat tapes can be installed by a plumbing professional to warm pipes during extreme cold temperatures. If you will be away from your home it is important to make sure it maintains a warm temperature during cold weather.

3. Practice proper landscaping

Walk around your yard and inspect the landscape. Inspect your trees and roots to ensure they are not causing damage to pipes. Believe it or not tree roots, looking for moisture, can actually puncture through your pipes. The hair-like roots can cause clogs and breakage. If roots are not removed promptly a complete blockage may occur. Using powerful cutting, a professional plumber can remove the roots and in many cases replace your affected pipes. One of the most important things for you to know regarding your plumbing is where your pipes are actually located. You can reduce the chances of root interference by limiting the number of trees and plants near pipes or by simply choosing plants and trees that produce less roots. Trees and plants that grow slowly will likely have less and smaller root systems. When planting large trees, be sure to plant them where the roots can’t reach pipes.

If you think you may already have a damaged pipe it is essential to call a professional right away. The problem will not go away on its own and will likely worsen if not tended to. At Richardson Plumbing our professionals are knowledgeable, trustworthy and experienced. We are family owned and operated and guarantee our customers quick service at a fair and honest price. At Richardson Plumbing we provide full service plumbing to the Northern KY and Cincinnati areas. Call us today for assistance in all your plumbing needs.

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How to Make Your Bathroom Safer for Children and the Elderly

bathroom

When thinking about the way your bathroom is set up, one of the most important characteristics to consider is bathroom safety. Every family member and every potential guest should be accounted for. Children can easily open cabinets and get into hazardous chemicals. The elderly are likely to fall getting into a bath tub or slip in a shower. Making your bathroom safe is an easy task with these simple installations.

For children the main aspect of safety is control and keeping potentially dangerous items out of reach. Children are curious, and whether you have your own kids or you have house guests with kids, it is important to keep hazardous materials out of their grasp. For example if you are storing toxic cleaning supplies it is essential to keep a child proof lock of the cabinet door. Another way to safely control your bathroom is by installing a separate lock on the outside of the bathroom above a child’s reach. This will prevent young children from going into the bathroom alone. While bathing your child it is crucial to take the proper safety measures inside the bath tub. A great way to prevent scalding is to set your water heater no higher than 120 degrees. Children can sometimes get rowdy while splashing in their bubble bath. Installing the proper gear such as faucet cover will protect your child from bumping their head or busting their chin on the faucet. Children can sometimes be clumsy which is why rubber bath mats or bath tub decals are an excellent way to prevent falls. Bath mats keep all members of your family safe.

When an elderly person falls and slips it can be life threatening. For fragile bones a small fall can be a huge deal. It is important to keep the elderly safe in the shower or tub by placing bath mats or tub decals. A small addition such as a bath mat could possibly save a life. Many elderly people do not like to ask for help, and like to have their freedom and be able to do things on their own. Another great way to add safety to your shower or bath tub is to install grab bars. They make your bath tub or shower accessible and easy to use. Taking a bath will not be a dangerous or difficult task. A grab bar is also helpful near the toilet for individuals that may have difficulty standing or sitting. Grab bars do not look institutional nowadays. They are made to accommodate your needs and also look fashionable.

At Richardson Plumbing we want to look out for the safety of each individual in your home. It is our priority to add comfort, safety and sophistication to your home. We will make sure you are completely satisfied in your home installations. We proudly service Northern KY and Cincinnati. Please call today for a free in home consultation and make sure your bathroom is safe and accessible for everyone.

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Should You Get a Stand-Up Shower or a Shower and Tub Combo?

shower

If you are trying to decide the best shower or tub for your home it is important to fully understand all the benefits of both. Both options are excellent choices for different kinds of homeowners, and with Richardson Plumbing you can’t go wrong either way. We will inform you of each choice and our experts are available to answer any questions you may have. At Richardson Plumbing we will provide you with the best possible customer service to give you the best possible experience when dealing with your home’s plumbing.

The shower and tub combination is the most widely used version of both showers and bathtubs. The reason the shower and tub combo is so commonly used is because they give you both options in one. Bath tubs are great for relaxing and unwinding after a long day. The heat is excellent for soothing sore muscles. Jets and whirlpool features are great for relaxation. Most people agree they fall asleep very quickly and stay asleep longer after a peaceful bath. The shower and tub combo is ideal for families with small children. Baths are fun for kids and easy for parents. So much enjoyment happens for a child in a bath tub. With toys and bubbles it can be an entertaining way to get your kids clean. Shower and tub combinations are very convenient and are the best choice for many families.

The stand-up shower is ideal for people with mobility issues or injuries. They help with safety. Rails and bars can easily be installed to prevent slips and falls. In a stand-up shower you have the option to have a sit down feature which also is an effective way to prevent falls. Benches and chairs allow you to sit down while bathing without having to climb into a hazardous tub. Depending on the size you select, generally showers take up less space than a bath tub would. This gives you larger bathroom space. Stand up showers also give you the option to add luxurious stream jets and rain showers. If you like the larger shower area and the bells and whistles available, Richardson Plumbing can help you make sure all of your plumbing is hooked up correctly.

If you can’t quite make a choice and are having trouble deciding, our professionals at Richardson Plumbing are available to help. We want to make sure you are completely satisfied with your purchase. Our staff is knowledgeable and friendly and ready to help with your next bathroom project. Weather you choose a stand-up shower or a shower and tub combo choose Richardson plumbing to do your installation or remodel. We are family owned and operated. We pride ourselves on excellent word of mouth referrals. At Richardson Plumbing we are family friendly and we treat our customers with respect and honesty. We proudly service the Northern KY and Cincinnati area for your convenience. At Richardson Plumbing we do outstanding work and by the end of the day we will make sure you are pleased with your stand-up shower or shower and tub combination.

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The Pros and Cons of Liquid Drain Cleaners

liquid drain cleaner

Many people use over the counter chemical drain cleaners for bathroom or kitchen sinks that are running slowly or will not drain at all. These products may seem like a good choice but they all have definite pros and cons that the homeowner needs to be aware of.

Types of Drain Cleaners

There are many types of commercial chemical drain cleaners available. They come in many forms such as liquid, powders or gels and create a chemical reaction that produces heat as a byproduct. The oxidizing drain cleaners use bleach and nitrates to break down and oxidize organic material, making it a good choice for food-based clogs found in kitchen sinks. Caustic drain cleaners dissolve difficult substances like grease, making them a better choice for heavy duty clogs. Licensed plumbers have access to acid drain cleaners that are not available over the counter in stores. These cleaners are very dangerous to your health and your pipes and should only be used by professionals.

Drain Cleaner PROS

The majority of chemical drain cleaners will clear your clog in one application in a very short amount of time. You can typically clear your sink or tub drain in less than an hour. They are also easy to use. You simply open the bottle, pour it down the clogged drain and then rinse with water. You do not need any special training, skill or tools. They are also relatively inexpensive, with most bottles costing less than ten dollars.

Drain Cleaner CONS

Along with the PROs mentioned, there are many CONS when considering to use drain cleaners. Although chemical drain cleaners can often clear away and break up clogs caused by food, grease, and hair they cannot clear clogs caused by mineral buildup or foreign objects. They are also not a good idea to use them for clogged toilets because the solution is heavier than water. This means that the cleaner would rest at the bottom of the toilet instead of going up to the clog in the siphon curve.

These cleaners can also be very dangerous to use. Chemicals such as Lye in certain cleaners can be harmful to your eyes and skin if they make contact with them. Chemical drain cleaners can also create harmful fumes that are dangerous to breath in. They can also contaminate your groundwater and soil if you have a leak in your sewer pipe.

Chemical drain cleaners can also damage plumbing pipes and fittings, especially if used repeatedly. PVC pipe can soften with repeated use of some drain cleaners. If pipes are currently corroded then the use of chemical drain cleaners can cause further damage. Repeated use of these cleaners can also cause residual buildup that can trap debris and cause more clogs.

Caution

There are many situations when you should NEVER use chemical drain cleaner. You should never pour it into a garbage disposal because it can cause damage to the unit. The chemicals can also splash back out the next time you use the disposal. If a drain is completely blocked, you should not use chemical drain cleaner. It will cover the clog in chemicals and will require the plumber to get rid of the water to clear the drain. Chemical drain cleaners can also damage septic tanks and should not be used with them.

Allow our professionals at Richardson Plumbing of Florence, KY to help you with alternatives to using liquid drain cleaners to ensure your safety and the safety of your plumbing. Contact us as we proudly serve Northern, KY and Cincinnati.

 

 

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The Care and Keeping of Your Dishwasher

dishwasher

A dishwasher is used to clean your family’s dishes every day, however you probably don’t ever think about cleaning it. Most people think that this appliance is cleaned with each use but actually that is not the case. Food and other debris collect on the inside of the machine and can build up over time. This buildup can cause the dishwasher to become dirty and can cause it to perform poorly. There are a few things that you can do to keep your dishwasher clean and running smoothly.

Regular maintenance and cleaning of your dishwasher will keep it running smoothly and will make sure that your dishes are spotless with each wash. One of the most important things to do is to use your dishwasher on a regular basis. Using it more frequently will make sure that any debris inside the machine will not settle at the bottom which will reduce the need for cleaning. However, periodically you will need to clean the appliance thoroughly by following these steps:

  1. Empty the dishwasher – Run the dishwasher through a normal cycle and then remove all of the dishes making sure that the inside is empty. This will allow you to have easy access to the inside and allow you to clean it properly
  2. Clean and Inspect the Spinning Arms – Your dishwasher operates by spraying water via the spinning arms. If the arms are not spinning properly or the holes in them are clogged then your dishes will not be cleaned. You will want to check the openings in the arms and clear any debris using a toothpick, piece of wire or pliers to remove any clog, which will allow the water to flow freely. You will also want to make sure that the arms spin freely and correctly.
  3. Clean the edges and exterior – After cleaning the inside, you will want to clean off any buildup that may be on the edges of the dishwasher to make sure that the door is closing properly and is able to be sealed to allow proper cleaning. The edges are not washed during the regular use of the dishwasher and often collect debris that builds up. This can be cleaned by using any regular household cleaner and a cloth. Make sure to wipe underneath the door, all flatware baskets and the soap dispenser.
  4. Clean the Drain – the drain to the dishwasher is located at the bottom and is often a place where food can build up. If you do not clean this debris out it can cause a clog and create unpleasant odor. Simply clean the area by removing anything in the drain so that the dishwasher can work properly.

In addition to regular use and an occasional thorough cleaning you should run your empty dishwasher with an acid to remove water deposits and buildup to make sure that your dishes continue to come out sparkly and not dingy. You can use lemon juice, lemonade or vinegar by placing it in the detergent dispenser. All of these tips can help you keep your dishwasher running smoothly.

At Richardson Plumbing located in Florence, KY we can help you with dishwasher maintenance and taking care of your dishwasher and all other appliances. Contact us for all of your plumbing needs as we proudly serve Northern KY and Cincinnati.

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What You Need to Know About Jacuzzi Tubs

jacuzzi

After a long, hard day at work, the first thing you want to do is come home, relax, and have some well-deserved “me time.” However, do you have a personal space where you can have some peace and quiet and disconnect from the world for a moment in utter relaxation? One of the best ways to accomplish this necessary goal is through installing a Jacuzzi tub in your home. There are multiple benefits to Jacuzzi tubs, but how do you know if it would be a good fit for your home? Richardson Plumbing of Florence, KY serving Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati provides you with this information about Jacuzzi tubs so that you may see if it would be beneficial to your life!

Advantages of Jacuzzi Tubs
The various benefits of Jacuzzi Tubs are pretty straightforward. Having the ability to come home and soak in a warm jetted bath whenever you desire is comparable to enjoying a spa-like experience in the comfort of your own home. With the hustle and bustle of life, soaking in a Jacuzzi tub can help you relax and relieve some of your daily stress. Not to mention, Jacuzzi tubs can also be an effective tool in a health or physical therapy regimen, when recommended by a professional. Jacuzzi tubs can be especially helpful if you experience problems with sore muscles and/or joints, poor circulation, or even poor flexibility. As you can see, there is an abundance of benefits to installing a Jacuzzi tub in your home!

Disadvantages of Jacuzzi Tubs
This luxurious spa-like experiences can be costly. This is one of the disadvantages of Jacuzzi tubs. These tubs tend to start around $1,000 and can even exceed $5,000 for high-end models with a large number of upgrades. Another cost that arises on top of this is an installation cost. Not to mention, installation can also be complicated. This is due to the nature of Jacuzzi tubs being large and fairly heavy. It is important to make sure you have adequate space in your bathroom for your desired Jacuzzi tub as well. Another disadvantage to consider is cleaning the Jacuzzi tub. It is not the same as cleaning a regular tub as there is a whole network of air tubes that need to be taken care of as well.

Professional Help in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati
If you think you still need help in deciding whether a Jacuzzi tub would be a good fit for your home, then it is time pay your friends at Richardson Plumbing a visit. We are located in Florence, KY and have been serving the Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati area for close to 20 years. Our trained technicians can assist you with small plumbing repairs such as frozen pipes this winter season all the way to kitchen or bathroom remodels. We also offer 24-hour emergency service in case you experience an issue that just can’t wait. We have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and are also on Angie’s List. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any of your plumbing needs!

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Does Your Kitchen Need Two Sinks?

two sinks

Remodeling your kitchen can be a huge undertaking but in the end, can turn cooking for your family and entertaining your friends into a joy! New countertops and appliances transform the space while a new layout in counters and cabinets improve the cooking flow. One thing that many homeowners don’t think about is adding a second kitchen sink.

Cooking vs Cleaning

You may think at first that it would be extravagant to have a second sink in the kitchen, however that second sink can give you more functionality in the space. Using one sink for cooking and the other for cleaning frees the cooking sink up for the chef. Being able to use the cooking sink for food preparation while using the other sink for the cleanup lets you leave the cleaning until after dinner is in the oven. You no longer have to wash the dishes in the same space that you are cleaning your fruits and veggies.

A second sink allows you to plan the kitchen workflow around the sinks – your prep sink could be in the island so you can have room to work and the dish sink could be near the tableware cabinets to help with putting them away.
If you have two cooks working simultaneously in the space, adding the second sink helps with making sure everyone has enough work space and can eliminate tripping over each other in the process.

 

Style and Placement

Both sinks do not need to be exactly the same. It may actually make more sense for them to be different. You may want a larger deeper sink for clean-up especially if you have a lot of large pots and pans. It would also make sense to have a deeper, wider bowl for filling large pots with water.

The prep sink can be smaller as to allow for you to leave more counter space. This sink would most likely also need a garbage disposal for all of the pieces from slicing and dicing.

When looking at placement for the sink in the kitchen it is probably best to consult an interior designer. You will want to think about the areas that you use often and what features you use the most when designing your kitchen.

For instance, if you have a kitchen that has a beautiful view then you will most likely want to position a sink under the window that allows you to look at the scenery while you are cooking or cleaning. If you like to have a beverage while cooking then you may want to create a wet bar with a sink for washing your glasses. If baking is your thing you may want to create a little baking corner for rolling out dough and filling baking sheets with a sink close by.
Your kitchen is often the heart of your home, where you spend much of your time making memories and preparing food for your family. Let the professionals at Richardson Plumbing help you create the perfect kitchen space.

Our professionals at Richardson Plumbing in Florence, KY servicing Northern KY and Cincinnati can help you with designing your kitchen with two sinks and all of your other kitchen plumbing needs.

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