Sprinkler Tune Up

 

Get your lawn off to a great start this spring by making sure your sprinkler is in good shape after the long winter. Furthermore, an efficient sprinkler will save you time and money over the long, hot months.

First, check the irrigation controls and programs. Check the time and date on the timer and the settings to make sure they are what you want for your lawn. Generally 3/4 inch of water per irrigation cycle is recommended, which moistens the soil around 8-9 inches deep. Replace the battery in the timer if needed (it is a good idea to do this every year.)

Make sure the sprinkler heads are free of dirt, rocks or any other type of debris. Try to keep obstacles out of the way. All of that debris can disrupt the flow of water, which cannot only mean an uneven flow, but also wasted water— and money.

If the sprinkler heads or nozzles, valves or pipes are worn out, cracked, chipped or otherwise damaged, replace them. Valves are especially important because if not working properly, they can lead to a lot of wasted water. If you notice any muddy areas or too-wet areas when testing the system, it probably means you have a leaky valve.

Turn on the water and do a test run. Open the water valve slowly to let pipes fill gradually to prevent a big surge of pressure and thus, damage. Too much pressure can lead to cracked pipes, broken valves, leaks and watering that is not even or efficient. A water pressure gauge can measure your pressure in your house and your yard. You connect it to a hose faucet and if the pressure is above 40-65 PSI, you may need to install a pressure regulator or to fix any damage that you think may be causing it.
Think about additions to help your system. A rain sensor can keep you from over-watering. It will prevent your system from watering right after a heavy rain.


Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Bathroom Makeover for Less

On average, a bathroom remodel costs about $9000, but the range can be significant. Here are some ways to update yours without spending too much.

  • imagesChange your sink faucet. Turn off the water supply (valves are typically under the sink). Next, turn on the faucet to relieve any water pressure. Disconnect the supply lines from
    the faucet and the lift rod, and then remove the nuts from under the faucet. Unscrew the slip nut on the P-trap. Put a bucket underneath to catch water. Disconnect the drain flange from the tailpiece. Follow the manufacturer’s directions for the new faucet.
  • Change your tub faucet. Again, turn off the water supply. Open the faucet and drain the water. Unscrew the screws that attach the handles. Pull the handle away from the wall to expose the valve. Unscrew the entire stem from the bathroom pipes. You’ll want to take the whole faucet to the store to pick out a new one.
  • Put in some new hardware—a curved, double-rod shower curtain, towel hooks, or cabinet handles can make a big impact.
  • Add in some storage space to reduce clutter. Look for unused areas on the wall or between things.
  • Paint and/or add crown molding.
  • Change your vanity light fixture.
  • Create a new frame for the mirror.

Remember, if you run into any issues with your plumbing or electricity during the renovation, this will add onto the cost. If, however these are things you’re not comfortable with doing yourself, it’s best to hire a professional from the beginning to avoid further complications once you’re in the middle of a project.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Leaky Toilet – Call The Pros at Central Carolina Plumbing

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Do you have a toilet that you constantly hear ‘running’?  Maybe you’ve just become used to that Tupperware container under the water connection.  Let’s just hope you don’t forget to empty it every other day.

Maybe you’ve employed the towel solution since you really don’t even have a clue as to where the water is coming from.  Either way, it is time to take matters into your own hands and really address the problem head on.

What To Do With a Leaky Toilet

Toilets have lots of moving parts.  The diagram, courtesy of This Old House, shows all the many parts of a toilet. Each part can  malfunction and cause a leak.  And sometimes it can be really hard to figure out which part is not working correctly.  So here are some basics:

  • Locate the leak. If you can figure out where the leak is you might be able to fix it.  If it is an obvious coupling, try tightening the connection.  If the connection is as tight as possible and it is still leaking call a professional as your fittings likely need to be replaced.  The same goes for gaskets and seals. If you see water leaking from a connection that involves a gasket or wax ring, it likely needs replacement.
  • Can’t find the leak? Cut the water off and don’t use the toilet and give us a call.  Cut the water off and drain any water from the fixture to prevent future damage.  You can do this by cutting off the water and flushing the toilet to get all the water out of the tank and into the bowl.  Flush again to get water out of the bowl.  If your leak is between the fixture and the floor connection, the wax ring will need to be replaced.  This type of leak is often accompanied by smelly fumes, so you will know if that is the case.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Surge Protection by Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electric

 

Surge Protection – Why is it important?power-strip

Earlier this week we talked about how you can prevent vampires by stopping the flow of electricity to your electronics when not in use. One way was to simply unplug each piece. The other way to do that was to plug your electronics into a power strip and to use the switch on the power strip to power all of the electronics off. So what is the difference between a power strip and a surge protector?

Power strips allow you to increase the number of plugs you can have that are served by one outlet in the wall. They also offer a convenient way to get power from the wall (and potentially behind furniture) to the area where you need it. They don’t offer any protection for power surges or if lightening runs into your home.

Surge protectors on the other hand offer you some degree of protection against fluctuations in the power supply, and even some protection against lightening. So, why is that important? Today’s electronics like televisions, DVD players and phones contain sensitive electronics that can be damaged by these fluctuations and surges. A surge protector will absorb the fluctuation in order to save the electronics. Surge protectors are a great idea for any high priced electronics. However, be aware that you will need to replace them annually. Many times they will absorb a surge and continue to work, so you need to replace frequently to ensure your electronics are protected.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Holiday Decor by Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electric

 

fragile boxOrganize Holiday Décor with These Tips

More than likely you have either begun to take down your holiday decorations, or are planning to do it soon. But before you pull out the boxes and tissue paper to start packing, take a minute to prepare and organize your decorations for the next season. Spending a little time now will make next year easier.

Consider how you are storing your Christmas décor. Are you keeping it in the original box? Maybe an old shoe box? Or a shopping bag? Plastic boxes that hold multiple ornaments can be purchased for less than $10 and often include cardboard dividers that can be adjusted to fit all ornament sizes and shapes. Look for bins in holiday colors to make them easy to find. Plastic bins are a great way to store all types of décor because they provide moisture protection and are sturdier than most cardboard boxes. If the décor items are mostly textile products, add a cedar ball or moth balls in order to keep pests out of the bin.

Strings of lights are perhaps the hardest holiday décor item to store because they become tangled so easily. Lights can be stored on specially made light reels that are sold at most retailers for less than $25. Alternatively, use a wire coat hanger to make a square form that you can wrap the light strands around.

Carefully clean any décor items before packing them away so that decorating will be easier the following season. Repair or replace any broken items and dispose of any items that you do not expect you will use again. Check carefully for worn or frayed cords on electrical items and either repair or replace.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Happy New Years from Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electric

Happy New Years from Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrichappy-new-year-confetti

Cheers to 2016! We at Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electric wish you and yours a very happy New Year! We were very blessed in 2015, a year of business growth, personal fulfillment, and joy. We look forward to 2016 and all of the new customers we will serve. We also look forward to partnering with our community again in 2015 to support those causes that our employees, customers, and partners support.

One of our goals for this year is to make sure that this blog is meeting your needs and expectations! Take a minute to post a comment about what topics you would like for us to address in this blog, or take a moment to post a topic suggestion on Facebook. Do you have questions you want answered, just drop us a line. We will do our best to get you and answer and you might be a star in our next blog post!

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Cleaning Your Chimney by Central Carolina Air, Plumbing & Electric

 

Cleaning your Fireplacechimeny 1

Given that the weather has turned cool, you have probably had the chance to enjoy a crackling fire in the last few weeks. There is nothing quite like cozying up on the couch with someone you love while watching the flames lick at the logs. However, many of us neglect our fireplaces.

Did you know that those fires cause soot that can build up in your chimney into a thick, tarry substance called creosote? This creosote can potentially cause a fire in your chimney. That would certainly put a damper on your relaxing evening by the fire. To clean your chimney, follow these tips:

  • Remove grates and andirons from the fireplace and set outside to clean later.
  • Move a trashcan next to the fireplace.
  • Check ashes to ensure that all embers are completely burned out before shoveling out the ashes.
  • Place a disposable tarp in the fireplace and over the hearth and any flooring to protect it from soot. Cover with newspapers to absorb any liquids and reduce the amount of soot that will get on the tarp.
  • Next, open the flue. Most are on a lever near the fireplace. Using a flashlight look up your chimney while engaging the lever. If you see the small door move, you have found the flue. Leave it open as you finish cleaning the chimney.
  • Using a chimney sweep (nylon or metal wire brush 1 inch larger in circumference than your chimney), scrub the walls to loosen debris. Debris should fall onto your tarp and newspaper for easy disposal.
  • Once you finish sweeping, make a solution of 6 tablespoons of trisodium phosphate, 1 cup of bleach and 1 gallon of warm water into a plastic bucket. Use gloves as this solution is very strong and should be handled with care according to the directions on the package. Use this solution and your brush to scrub the walls of the chimney.
  • Rinse with warm water.
  • Dispose of the newspapers and tarp carefully by folding all edges inward to form a bundle and contain the mess.
  • Finally, using a nylon brush, clean loose debris from grates and andirons before returning them to the fireplace.

While you can clean your own chimney, you may prefer to call a professional if you are especially sensitive to chemicals, lack the time and patience, or simply don’t want to tackle this job on your own. Look online for chimney sweeps to find a local professional.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Pet Safety by Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electric

 

01faab088d6493db62ece4ef9a149fa7061c96fa19Caring for Pets During the Holidays

The holiday season is a time to celebrate with those we love – including our furry family members. While you are decorating this holiday season keep these tips in mind to keep Fido and Felix safe:

  • Some plants may be poisonous for pets. Either forgo them altogether or place them out of reach of pets. Poinsettia, holly, pine needles, mistletoe and lilies are just a few examples. For a complete list go to aspca.org and search for toxic plants.
  • Keep tinsel and ribbons up high so that pets can’t reach them. If eaten, they can get stuck in their intestines and cause blockages.
  • Don’t burn candles unattended or low to the ground since tails can sometime go astray and knock over the candle, or worse, catch the tail on fire.
  • Keep glass ornaments high on the tree, and in case of breakage, clean up the glass shards immediately to keep paws and tummies safe from broken glass.
  • Secure the Christmas tree to a wall or the ceiling in order to prevent it from tipping over on pets.
  • Do not let pets drink water from the base of the Christmas tree. It can contain preservatives which are poisonous, or harbor bacteria.

We want you and your pets to enjoy this holiday season. We hope these tips will help keep all of you safe. I want to encourage you to take a moment to nominate your favorite hero for our “Heat for Heroes” contest that started on December 1! We are giving a ceramic heater to 100 heroes in our community.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24-hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Give Your Roof an Annual Physical by Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electric

Give Your Roof a an Annual Physicalfile0001540045549

Your roof does a lot for your each day.  It keeps out the rain, shields you from the sun and ensures all your furniture stays dry (at least a working roof does)!  So how can you make sure that it continues to do its job year after year?  Give it an annual physical, of course!  Just like you have to make sure all of your systems are in working order, your house requires constant maintenance too.

Fall is a great time to either inspect your roof yourself, or hire someone to inspect it.  Roofs that are slate are expected to last 100 years or so, but still must be inspected for broken tiles annually to prevent leaks.  Metal roofs are expected to last 40 – 80 years, but should be inspected yearly to check for rust on the metal sheet and around the screws/nails used to secure the sheets.  Wood shakes and architectural shingles will last about 30 years with proper maintenance.  Asphalt shingles, the most popular roof covering, will last 20 years.  Some asphalt shingles will last longer, but you can expect to pay a premium for that type.

Newer roofs, where there is no evidence of leakage, can usually be inspected by homeowners from the ground or on a ladder.  Older roofs, or those with evidence of a leak, should be inspected by a professional who can inspect them from on top of the roof.  Extra care should be taken with slate roofs because they are expensive and fragile. Take care of your roof, and it will take care of you!

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

While You're Away… by Central Carolina Air Conditioning Greensboro NC

boy jumping on beach

Think your house is ready for vacation while you’re away? Think again.

Earlier we posted about how to set your thermostat.

But did you know that you should turn off your water at the main valve as well? Lots of floods happen in the home when people are away. Many families lose all their belongings when water lines break and water floods their home!

Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Electrical and Plumbing will soon offer a home automation system where you can do all of this right from your phone! You’ll be able to just hit a button that is called “Vacation Mode” and all of this happens for you and it can turn on lights at certain times to make it look like someone is home.

But for now, remember to adjust that thermostat correctly AND turn off the water at the main water valve! Happy Vacationing!

Need maintenance on your Air Conditioning, Plumbing or Electric?  We would love to help! Give us a call at -800-461-3010.