How to Find a Good Plumber

There have been lots of awful stories about rogue plumbers who exploit the vulnerable and take a few minutes to fix a dripping tap but spend most of their time doing nothing and charging way over the top.

The good news is most Vancouver plumbers are honest and professional and not out to rip people off. But the sad news is that there are some dodgy guys around and there is a shortage in skilled. So if your tap, radiator or boiler’s got a a leak and you need someone fast how can you make sure the person who comes to fix it is competent and out to exploit you?

Obviously a good plumber is often hard to come by. So here are some tips for finding a reputable Vancouver plumbing company fairly quickly. Not all of these will be appropriate to your circumstances but at least it will give you some options.

  1. If you are in a hurry then we would recommend a quick look on the internet. Search for a local plumber with your town, city or village.
  2. If you don’t have the internet at home or you can’t connect then try the neighbors. A verbal recommendation from someone you trust is quick and easy
  3. OK so you have no neighbors around who know of a good plumber – try your yellow pages. There are always plenty of local plumbers that advertise there
  4. If you don’t have Yellow Pages then why not call a friend who lives close and ask if they know anyone…if they don’t…
  5. Ask if they can recommend that you call someone else who could know – it could be anyone their referral doesn’t have to be a plumber themselves just someone who may have the number of one.
  6. Are their other tradesmen you have used in the past- electrician, carpenter, gas engineer? Try these. Tradesmen often work together and know of each other so they are likely to know of a good plumber
  7. Is there a hardware or DIY store near to where you live? These will often have lists of tradesmen who can help. Go round or call them.
  8. Is there a relative you think could have some ideas. Obviously they would have to be fairly local.
  9. If none of these work and things are getting a little desperate you could call the Citizens’ Advice Bureau and ask if they can help. This is an excellent organisation that helps people with all kinds of problems – they would certainly have a Yellow pages.
  10. If the problem is serious don’t attempt it yourself and if it takes a while to locate a good plumber and your need is urgent make sure you make what cautionary arrangements you can – pots, pans, containers, towels, to catch dripping water.
  11. If the problem is a major one check with your insurance company that you are covered and ask them if they can recommend a good plumber. If you are not covered ask them if they could recommend a good plumber anyway.

For a few more good tips on finding a reputable plumber, read this article we posted last month.

Warning Signs That Drainage Has Become a Problem

Drainage problems seem unimportant most of the time, but could easily and quickly evolve into problems that go far beyond the drainage system. It’s important to note that drainage problems do not simply appear; there are tell-tale signs that we tend to ignore.

Drainage problems are brought about by a number of factors, including improper drainage fixtures such as drainage pipes that are too narrow, clogged drains and can lead to difficulty dispelling water, hence creating backups that could lead to serious problems. One of the most overlooked services is perimeter drain tile cleaning. A local plumber is usually the best choice for getting this service done.

One of the best ways to ensure that your drainage is working properly is to regularly inspect your home.

Top Warnings of Drainage Problems

  • Unpleasant drainage odors
  • Strange sounds in the drainage
  • Slow draining water
  • Penetration of water in the walls
  • Foundation cracks
  • Water accumulation in the various areas within and around the home
  • Soil changes in specified areas

One of the major signs to look out for is unpleasant smells emanating from the drainage system. Blockages are usually a result of hair and food which eventually begin to accumulate slime– and hence the awful smell. You may also want to look out for slow draining water which is the easiest way to know that your drainage is in danger.

Slow drainage means that there is an obstruction. You can also tell that your drainage is experiencing some problems by listening to the sounds its makes. Gurgling sounds are brought about when you have trapped air in the drain. Foundation cracks also indicate that there is a drainage leak.

Water resurgence is a clear sign of a drainage problem. You also need to look for signs of localized flooding on areas— such as the rooftop and yard. Presence of moisture walls could tell you if you have drainage problems.

Preventing Drainage Problems

You can easily prevent drainage problems from occurring by:

  • Installing sink strainers
  • Regularly cleaning the drainage system
  • Planting trees and plants away from the drainage pipes

Sink strainers help keep foreign objects out of the drain and help catch food particles, hair and other matters that could easily go down your drain and potentially lead to blockage. If you are planting trees, plant them away from your drainage pipes. If you already have trees and plants, make sure that the roots do not invade your pipes.

Cleaning your drainage system is important. You can keep your sink clean by simply pouring hot water and using a suction pump to remove any grease and other build ups. However, be very careful about using popular drainage cleaners, as they easily corrode drainage pipes and lead to greater problems.

Stopping drainage problems early is essential, as it could prevent blockages from occurring and even arrest leaks in time, thus preventing structural damages and consequent expenses. If you have come across any of the issues mentioned above and cannot clear the problem yourself, then we suggest you call a local plumbers Vancouver for professional help. In many cases proper tools are needed to remove a blockage or root intrusion.

Regulations and Safety Assurance Brought by a Plumbing Company

Customer service satisfaction is important and should be a given in any service-oriented environment or company. A Vancouver plumber who provides excellent service will be hired and called for to work on a future projects when the customer it is servicing had been satisfied with its performance. Testimonials and word-of-mouth advertisement from a satisfied customer is the best tool to use so that the company may acquire more clients and customers. Naturally, when you receive excellent service from a company, you will eventually recommend them to someone else like a friend or a relative.

This also serves true when hiring the service of a plumbing company to install all plumbing system needs of a house or a building. The plumbing system is not limited to only the installation of water pipes and the basic plumbing fixtures. It also includes water heating machines, the overall bathroom and kitchen installation including the sink, the tub and shower where you relax and comfort yourself in and the tank which holds up your water in place.

Other basic components of a plumbing service that a plumbing company must be able to provide are fixing of broken pipes, waste disposal units and its cleaning operation and clearing of blocked pipes. An established plumbing company Vancouver may also include heating and gas installations as part of their primary services. Every aspect of plumbing service is important as you enjoy the luxury and comfort of your home or office establishment.

Trustworthy plumbing companies and their services are bound to different laws and regulations specific to where it is located. This ensures safety and quality of service from all those who are performing such business. The industry needs to be regulated so that the government is assured that only licensed plumbing companies are operating in their area.

Other people may think that they can do the work of fixing their water system but you must remember that you are still under the same laws and regulations that these companies are bound. When you try to do it yourself, you may be putting yourself, your family and the entire building into more danger than when you hire an expert to do the work for you. This will eliminate the hassle and headache that you have to go through as you fix or repair whatever plumbing fixture that was broken or clogged up. Sacrificing that little amount of money for a service may not be worth it when you risk yourself trying to do something that you are not knowledgeable of.

What to do When you need a Plumber

Until the dawn of the 20th century, lead was the main choice of material for molding tubular conduits, and the word plumber meant a person skilled in working with lead. Polyurethane, copper and other materials gradually became more popular and widely used, as it was discovered that the seemingly harmless material of lead was actually causing various chronic and fatal conditions by being ingested.

Of course, today’s modern buildings have complex plumbing systems consisting of not only hot and cold running water, but also sewage disposal, air conditioning, gas heating, systems for fire defense and a pneumatic / hydraulic power delivery system. Many emergencies in the home can be prevented or resolved by your friendly residential plumbing expert, making the plumber the 4th emergency service for many people.

Getting to Know a Local Plumber

One of the most common problems with calling any Vancouver plumbers to your home is that it seems they are always busy when you need them the most. If they are available they’ll charge double or triple for coming during the evening or on the weekend. You might be expecting to be charged at least double the normal rate as well as an after hours premium if you have the audacity to call the plumber out on a Sunday!

However, most plumbers who specialize in residential plumbing services are only too aware of how valuable the time of their customers is, and how inconvenient a leaking or burst pipe can potentially be.

Most plumbers do make all reasonable efforts to be at your home as soon as possible, and just as importantly, to be there when they say they will. Plumbing work sometimes results in an explosion, flood or other disaster and because of the risks associated with this type of work, plumbers need to have professional indemnity insurance, which inevitably leads to higher prices for their services.

Take Your Time and Look Around

Be wary of using a plumber that seems too cheap, as they probably don’t have the proper insurance. Unfortunately there are dozens of unreliable and disreputable plumbers out there just waiting to take advantage of you and take your money, although of course not all plumbers are charlatans and many strive to deliver the best possible work. Don’t be afraid to ask for the VAT registration reference from the plumber, and look for membership of professional or trade bodies.

You can avoid a lot of this by getting acquainted with one of the local Vancouver plumbing companies in your neighborhood before a problem happens. Call a family member or friend who might have had to use a plumber in the past. They can tell you if they have a preferred service company. You can also find good people by looking up reviews on plumbing companies that look good to you online.

Most of us Don’t Want to Deal With This

Although you will probably have need to call a plumber at some point, it is hoped that you won’t have to, but of course it pays to have the contact information for a reliable and experienced plumber in your area. Calling a plumber in Vancouver for a routine check up and overhaul of your plumbing and heating systems is a much better option than waiting until you have a plumbing emergency and then calling one.

Where to Go For a Personal Loan in Vernon

The cost of living in many developed countries is quite high and lot of people live from paycheck to paycheck. Every now and then, many of us are faced with financial hardships especially if an emergency arises and we have no extra money to pay for unexpected expenses.

While many people would resort to borrowing money from their family and friends, sometimes, this is not an option. Perhaps they are hesitant to do so or their loved ones simply don’t have any money to spare.

If you’re strapped for cash until your next payday, you can approach a money lender for help. There are many financial institutions in the country that can help you. But the thing is, not all of them are able to.

For one, they will consider your credit history. Have you been paying your bills and loans on time? Do you have any outstanding loan? Are you prompt in paying your credit card bills?

The answers to these questions will determine whether a lender will be able to help you with your short term financial problem. But if you don’t have a very good credit score, don’t worry, it’s not yet the end of the world.

You see, there are personal loans in Vernon offered by lenders that specialize in helping borrowers with low credit scores. In fact, you can apply for these loans online. For the most part, the lender will only require you to furnish them a proof of your employment, proof of identification and residency, and your checking account information. Once you’re approved, your money will be deposited to your bank account in as quickly as a day or two.

Keep in mind however that lenders usually charge high interest rates for bad credit loans due to the fact that it is a high risk loan. After all, when they approve the loan, there is always the possibility that the borrower will default on his loan payments.

The best thing you can do is to take a little bit of time to do some research. If you search for loans available online, you will be given plenty of options in the search results. Take some time to compare their offers, rates and terms. That way, you can find a money lender that offers the lowest interest rates. You should also see to it that the lender is a registered business, and not some fly by night operator who’s out to steal your personal information.

Generally speaking, if you’re strapped for cash and need money urgently, you can find the solution from lenders offering personal loans. But practice diligence and use your common sense to ensure that you are getting the best deal. Finally, don’t make borrowing a habit. Get a personal loan only if absolutely necessary and pay it off as quickly as possible.

Applying for a Personal Loan

The cost of living in many developed countries is quite high and lot of people live from paycheck to paycheck. Every now and then, many of us are faced with financial hardships especially if an emergency arises and we have no extra money to pay for unexpected expenses.

While many people would resort to borrowing money from their family and friends, sometimes, this is not an option. Perhaps they are hesitant to do so or their loved ones simply don’t have any money to spare.

If you’re strapped for cash until your next payday, you can approach a money lender for help. There are many financial institutions in the country that can help you. But the thing is, not all of them are able to.

For one, they will consider your credit history. Have you been paying your bills and loans on time? Do you have any outstanding loan? Are you prompt in paying your credit card bills?

The answers to these questions will determine whether a lender will be able to help you with your short term financial problem. But if you don’t have a very good credit score, don’t worry, it’s not yet the end of the world.

You see, there are personal payday loans Edmonton offered by lenders that specialize in helping borrowers with low credit scores. In fact, you can apply for these loans online. For the most part, the lender will only require you to furnish them a proof of your employment, proof of identification and residency, and your checking account information. Once you’re approved, your money will be deposited to your bank account in as quickly as a day or two.

Keep in mind however that lenders usually charge high interest rates for bad credit loans due to the fact that it is a high risk loan. After all, when they approve the loan, there is always the possibility that the borrower will default on his loan payments.

The best thing you can do is to take a little bit of time to do some research. If you search for loans available online, you will be given plenty of options in the search results. Take some time to compare their offers, rates and terms. That way, you can find a money lender that offers the lowest interest rates. You should also see to it that the lender is a registered business, and not some fly by night operator who’s out to steal your personal information.

Generally speaking, if you’re strapped for cash and need money urgently, you can find the solution from lenders offering personal loans. But practice diligence and use your common sense to ensure that you are getting the best deal. Finally, don’t make borrowing a habit. Get a personal loan only if absolutely necessary and pay it off as quickly as possible.

Difference Between Secured and Unsecured Personal Loans

Every now and then some of us may need a personal loan. Running out of cash can happen at any time and that is when a personal advance can come in handy. Personal loans are also known as signature or unsecured advances. This kind of finance can help when there is a need for money and you won’t have to go through a long process or put up your home or car for collateral. Personal loans online can be a convenient way to get this type of financial assistance.

Additionally, personal advance loans can be a good way to get cash that you need right away. They are made for any purpose and do not have to explained as to the reason for needing them in order to get the financing. To be clear, the primary types of personal loans that exist are secured (protected) personal loans and unsecured (not protected) personal loans. An individual loan that is safeguarded by collateral that was put up as surety is secured. In other words, it requires back-up by some kind of financial asset like a person’s boat or even someone’s wedding ring. If there is no repayment, a repossession will be made on the boat or ring or whatever item was used as the guarantee. Check out online personal loans; they are convenient and the process is quick and easy.

A loan, by an individual, that is never protected or backed up by anything is not secure; except by the signature of the person who wants the loan. In most cases, this kind of advance for a person is based on their credit worthiness. In addition, with an advance such as that, that is not secured, there is a higher interest rate and that is because of the additional risks associated with it.

There are several benefits that come with a personal loan:

  1. Easier to quality for and
  2. The process to getting a loan is not as long

It is important to note that there are two main benefits with a loan for person or individual: having a fixed monthly payment and a fixed loan term. Because the interest rate never changes, a person’s monthly payment stays the same. Most importantly, a fixed payment gives a person a feeling of stability; especially when it comes to their monthly budget.

The fixed loan term is yet another benefit that comes with this type of advanced financing. Having a fixed loan term can help a person deal with their overall financial concerns. This can lower a person’s stress and give them a more confident feeling that they can pull themselves out of their financial dilemma.

Personal Loans with Bad Credit

There are options for people to apply for even if they have bad credit. Short term lenders are aware of the many reasons people have fallen into that crevice of a low rating in the credit bureau: loss of jobs, identity theft, the primary paycheck in the family might stop, or starting a new job that causes a late payment to be sent in weeks after the due date. There is nothing like the feeling of security with money in the bank, especially for an emergency. Don’t listen to the rumor mill, clients are approved every day for personal types of loans for bad credit.

To apply for a personal loan takes a few minutes to fill out an application. The lender must know what type of income is being received by the client. It can be social security, disability checks, alimony or a financial settlement. There are personal loans for bad credit that will fit a client’s budget. The financial information is vital for a loan officer to make a determination of how much money they will approve for a personal loan with bad credit. Lenders must be certain that the amount of income received is enough to handle the re-payments of the loan.

Be aware the personal loans for bad credit that are approved might have a high annual percentage rate or APR. Some lenders will help the client by extending the length of time to repay the loan. The lender helps the client with due dates that can be met with ease. Read all the information and ask questions so there is a complete understanding about all aspects of the loan. Remember the lender is there to help the client to secure a personal loan. When the loan is approved the funds are direct deposited in the client’s bank account or a check is sent out through snail mail. The bonus is when payments are made on time and the loan is repaid, the lender informs the credit bureau and that boost’s the client’s credit score. The lender knows the clients history and will offer the client the opportunity to apply for another loan.

What to do When You Need a New Hot Water Tank

water-heaterWhen it’s time to replace the old hot water tank you have a few options. One of them being whether to keep the type you have or consider a different type of water heater. There two basic types now and you should make you decision based on your needs.

Traditional Hot Water Tanks

If you have less than five people living in your home and you find that you don’t use an excessive amount of Hot Water, consider a 150 liter (33 imperial gallon) tank with a 36,000 BTU per hour input rating (10.6 KW).

If you have five or more people living in your home, or you simply use a lot of H.W. because everyone showers at about the same time each day, etc., consider a 189 liter (42 imperial gallon) hot water tank with a 45,000 BTU input (13.2 KW).

Electric Hot Water Tanks

If you have less than four people living in your home, you’ll probably need a 175 liter (40 imperial gallon) tank with two 3-kilowatt heating elements.

If you have five or more people in your home or tend to use a lot of H.W., you may want to step up to a 270 liter (60 imperial gallon) tank with two 4.5-kilowatt elements.

Tips on Saving Energy

Insulate your piping with 12 millimeter (1/2 inch) fiberglass or foam insulation to reduce heat loss as the water is distributed throughout your home.

Insulate any piping that passes through unheated areas such as crawl spaces, attics and carports, etc.

Remember to flush your H.W. tanks every couple of years to prevent sediment build-up on the bottom of the tank and on the heating elements which can reduce the lifespan of your H.W. heater.

If You Want to Install it Yourself

Make sure you have all the proper tools and materials you need to properly install hot water tank Kelowna. Do the necessary research before attempting to install your hot water tank.

First you’re going to want to turn off the gas, power, and water supply to the tank. Then put on a hose on the bottom on the hot water tank to drain the left over water out of the tank. Now you will need to take off the inlet and outlet nipples off the water tank, you will need to use two pipe wrenches for this.

If it’s a gas water heater use your two pipe wrenches and disconnect the union, that is between the supply pipe and the inlet pipe or it might be a flared fitting. You can take the flue hat off too as well since the tank is not running.

Now that you tank is disconnected move it out of the way, and put your new one where the old one was. Make sure that you can get to all the dials a buttons properly when you put the tank back. A good rule of thumb is to use about 6 inches around. So this means make sure that there is nothing flammable within 6 inches of your tank. Make sure too that it sits level on the floor, you may have to make some shims.

Put Teflon tape on the inlet and outlet nipples and then put them into the new tank. Make sure that the blue goes into the cold and the red goes into the hot. Also be sure that all the arrow indicators are all pointing in the proper direction of flow.

Attach flexible hoses on the inlet and outlet water pipes. If you don’t see a supply shut off valve on the cold side, I would install one, just to cover yourself. After you are sure that everything is connected back properly, open the valve to fill the tank up, while this is happening i would open up a few hot water faucets just to get some of the air out.

Put back together the gas pipes just like they were before… you might need to change it a bit, but not too much. Make sure that you use Teflon tape and pipe dope on each fitting, then tighten them back together with your pipe wrenches. Grab your manufacturer instructions to connect the gas supply tubing. After the gas is on test all your joints, making sure that there are not leaking. You can use soapy water to help with this; it will just bubble for you. Then you may need to go back and crank on them again.

If all else fails and you decide to call a professional then you may want to consider a licensed Kelowna plumber. They will get the job done quickly and up to local code, which is actually quite important. If you don’t know the local installation codes then you could risk health problems from poor ventilation or something else equally important.

Inspect Your Roof Once or Twice a Year

roof repairThe roof over your head is one of the most important components in your home. It keeps you dry and protects the wooden framework of the house. The roof is supported by trusses, joists and an array of parts that make up the whole. If it springs a leak it starts to undermine the entire structure, and that’s not the worst part. If water gets inside the house it starts attacking the insulation, the ceiling and even the walls if it gets that bad.

Something you want to set up as a home owner is a general maintenance schedule. There are a number of things in the home that need attention every few months, once a year or every two years. Here is a list of common house components to give you an idea what to add to your list.

  • The roof and gutters
  • Perimeter drainage, inside drains and possibly a sump pump
  • All appliances including air conditioning, HVAC or fresh air heat exchanger
  • The furnace, boiler, or electric base boards

As you can see there is a lot going on in the typical North American home. For instance the gutters should be flushed every six months, and while you are up on the ladder, look closely at the roof. If you see any shingles at an angle, flashing coming loose, or the granules in the shingles are shedding, then you will want to take a closer look. If you decide that any roof repair will be needed, you can click on the link to read some DIY roof repair tips from a company in Vancouver BC.

If you don’t like the idea of going up on a ladder yourself,  then you should start looking for a local roofing outfit who you feel will do a good job at a fair price.

For appliances like the furnace or an HVAC unit, you should change the filters every four months and get someone in every year or so for maintenance. These types of appliances need to be tuned up regularly for best efficiency. For things like the stove or dishwasher it’s not so critical because you use them every day, so you will notice when something goes out of whack. Not like the roof or the gutters which no one looks at unless you take the time to look up.

The Worst Roof Job Ever!


This video is a good example of how half-assed work can be a complete waste of time and money. Don’t hire someone just because they low-balled the price.

Pay Attention to the Gutters and Drainage Around Your Home

When it rains in Vancouver it can go on for weeks in the winter and it can be a serious downpour in the summer when the sky’s open up. When I first moved to Vancouver 20 years ago I was surprised to see a lot of homes without rain gutters. This is a mistake that can end up costing you thousands of dollars in water damage. Over time water that is not diverted away from your foundation ends up cracking the cement or opening the mortar between the cinder blocks. When that happens water starts getting into the basement which I’m sure you can imagine will cause havoc.

These days most builders will install gutters as a rule of thumb, but there are still a few thousand homes in the GVRD without proper drainage off the roof. Gutters direct rain water into the downspout and away from the building when installed properly. It’s easy to find out if your gutter down spouts are doing their job, just walk around your house and see if the downspout is draining into your flower beds or away from the house. They usually run off away from the home using any number of methods.

Proper Down Spout Drainage

downspoutThis picture shows one way it can be done. If you feel the water on your property is not draining because the gutters need cleaning, call Reliable Gutters for professional advice. We are a professional gutter cleaning company and will be happy to go over your options to help you save money by avoiding future water damage. If you do  not have gutters on your home and your budget is limited here is one system you could consider that will last for a few years.

Cheap Vinyl Gutters

Vinyl gutters are the cheapest way to go and good for a limited budget, but if you want quality work that lasts for decades then we suggest Alu-Rex gutters. They are the only gutter system on the market that comes with a manufacturers warranty. Good value for the money. If you prefer a professional does this work for you call us for a quote on gutter installation or if all they need is a clean up at we will be happy to inspect and do a gutter cleaning job for you.

Simple Vinyl Gutter Installation

Reliable Roof Repair – Gutter Services
Phone: (604) 259-0011
408 East Kent Ave S
Vancouver, BC V5X 2X7