Category Archives: Plumbing Article Archives

20 DEGREES! NOOOOOOOOOOO!

 

Forecast – Saturday, Oct. 31, 2020 – 31 degrees in the morning.

Next Monday, Nov. 2, 2020 – in the 20’s in the morning

Those cold mornings have done in our plants, our vegetation decorations, our gardens and left us with cold-damaged plants that need to be cleared from our gardens and flowerbeds.  Another thing that needs done is to remove/disconnect our hoses from the exterior faucets.

It is not advisable to leave your hoses attached through the winter.  The water in the pipe will freeze and, in the spring, it is likely to burst – flooding your home.  If this happens when you are not home – you don’t even want to think about it.  Many years ago, I got a call at 5:15 a.m.  The Englewood police had just called our customer who was out of town.  They told him water had frozen at the end of his driveway – there was no reason for water to be at the end of his driveway – it had not rained or snowed for that matter.  Yup, you guessed it.  The exterior faucet line had burst in his garage and water had been running long enough for it to reach the street.  The house?  You can imagine.

By the way, the plumber’s secretary didn’t follow her own advice and our backyard became a small lake.  Thankfully, it didn’t get into the house, but the water company loved sending that bill. 

Disconnect those hoses, allow the hose to drain and store in the garage. Turn off the shut off valve on the exterior faucet water line and then open the exterior faucet to allow the water to drain out. By doing so you won’t need to call us in the spring.  If you don’t, here’s the number you’ll need –Aaron Kramer Plumbing – 937-898-0008. 

 

 

Buckingham Palace and Plumbing

The Royals, kings, queens, princes, princesses, fairy tales, crowns, crown jewels, pageantry. pomp and circumstance, coronations, the Windsors – on and on and on the list could go of things that come to mind when you hear ‘Buckingham Palace’?  But plumbing?  How about HUGE, IMMENSE? Or, how many people does it take to clean it?

HUGE and IMMENSE when you learn it has 775 rooms (the Queen only uses 6 of them.) – 19 state rooms, 52 royal and guest bedrooms, 188 staff bedrooms, 92 offices and 78 bathrooms which translates into 500 toilets, sinks and showers.

This ‘house’, the same as all of ours, needs renovating, maintenance, and upkeep –just done on a grander scale.  A ten year ‘re-servicing’ project was begun in 2017 and is already over budget (original amount was $490 million) and behind schedule.  Take heart, it happens to the richest of us!   Major systems such as electrical and plumbing are being replaced.

There are 6,500 electrical outlets (that is still probably not enough or they aren’t in the right place, just like our houses), 5,000 light fixtures (bulbs have to be changed in some rooms that are 90 feet high), 20 miles of heating pipe and 2,500 radiators.  The plumbing system – 10 miles of piping – needs to be replaced, but in the meantime toilets, sinks and showers clog – just like ours; faucets drip – just like ours; hot water is from boilers which go down – just like our water heaters.  To make these repairs in just one wing, 3000 pieces of art and antiques had to be removed and stored.  And I complained about having to move 10 family pictures and Aunt Agnes’ vase. 

No matter the size, any house needs repairs.  Aaron Kramer Plumbing is ready and able to make those plumbing repairs to your ‘palace’.  Our ‘prince’ of a technician is waiting!  Give us a call!  (937-898-0008)

(This plumber’s secretary reads plumbing trade magazines – go figure.  In PHC news, February 2020, an article about ‘Reservicing’ Buckingham Palace piqued my interest.  More info was found on the internet – articles, pictures and videos – all quite interesting.  Did the royal family get bumped out or need to move to temporary quarters?  Some of them did; just like us when major renos are being done.  They aren’t much different than we are; but I bet they didn’t have to go stay at Motel 6.)

The Plumber’s Secretary  

Ok, I Give Up! What ARE those?

             

Ahhh, there is nothing more relaxing than sinking up to your chin in a tub full of hot, fragrant bubbles or standing under a shower of hot water – luxuriating after a hard day’s work.  Did you ever give a thought as to what bathing was like before now?

The Romans had their public, heated, open-air, baths that were available to anyone to use – rich or poor.  (Let your imagination run on that one – common laborers bathing with the upper echelon!  At least they were all clean, I guess.)  Some of the upper echelon of society did have hot baths in their homes.  However, bathing in the next centuries was not so common.  Fast forward to the beginnings of this country.  

A hot bath? Nope.  You took a dip in the nearest creek, stream, pond, river, etc to get clean.  Refreshing in the summer, but not so much in other seasons – which meant much less bathing.  How in the world did they stand to around each other?  No Zest or Irish Spring or Dove or Ban or Degree!  Use your imagination!

For the settlers moving out across this country hot baths were, most of the time, a once a week event, if then.  And, an event it was!  It took hours to get an entire family bathed.  The family wash tub was hauled into the kitchen and placed in front of a wood burning stove.  Water would then have to be lugged from the nearest creek or pond, bucket by bucket, put into large pots to heat either outside on a fire or inside on the stove.  How long would it take to heat up enough water to fill up that wash tub?  Use your imagination again!

To the first person into the tub, usually the youngest family member, it was sheer luxury!  Was it then emptied and then refilled?  Uh, no.  One person out, the next one in; that one out, and then next one in and so forth until the entire family had had a bath.  What was the tub water like by the last bath? Use your imagination! 

Taking a shower inside the house was unheard of until William Feetham came up with an indoor shower.  The bather would stand in a basin and over their head was a tank full of water – cold water. One tank was not enough and had to be refilled – by climbing a ladder next to the shower.  Bathing was definitely NOT done in private.  Use that imagination again!                                                                                                             

With the development of indoor plumbing it now became possible to get water to where you wanted to use it – but the water was still cold – until 1868.  In 1868 Benjamin Waddy Maughan, a painter in the UK, invented a heater that used natural gas to heat up the water.  The heater was located next to the bathtub allowing the water to go directly into the tub.  Nice!  However, the gases created by the burning natural gas were not vented out of the room causing illness and occasionally, an explosion!   Needless to say, this heater, called “The Geyser” by Maughan, never really caught on in popularity. 

Following Maughan were others who took his idea and began working to improve on this indoor water heater.  One such inventor was Edwin Ruud, who in 1889, developed the first safe, automatic hot water tank to be used inside the home.  These heaters were still located in the bathroom, but with more and more homes having indoor plumbing and utility companies running gas lines to homes, it became possible to have one heater and have the hot water piped throughout the house.                                                                                                                                

I wonder if pioneers and others ever tried to imagine what it would be like to take a bath or shower without all that work?

Thankfully, we don’t have to imagine – we just luxuriate!

By the way, those pictures at the beginning? 

Those are early water heaters!

 

 

What Do Aaron Kramer Plumbing Customers Expect From Their Local Plumber?

E –  Expect quality work at a fair price.

X Xplanations of work to be done.

P Prompt arrival time with a call a head that the plumber is on his way.

E Experience and expertise in our field.

C Customer Service that is second to none.

T Thanks from US for your business, your loyalty, your referrals, and your reviews!

This is what we know you expect, and we do our best to fulfill those expectations. 

It is a full-time job – a job we are more than willing to do and want to do.

Aaron Kramer Plumbing 

Your Local Dayton, Ohio Plumber

Working To Fulfill Your Expectations! 

Call us today!  937-898-0008

A Research Paper? No Way!

Class, I’m going to distribute the guidelines for your research papers.

Oh man!  Did any of you enjoy doing research papers?  The instructions were probably along these lines – do the research, make note cards as you’re reading, make an outline, do a rough draft, edit, and do the final draft. Done!  Well, we aren’t asking you to write a research paper, but we are suggesting that you do some research when choosing the technicians who will be working in your home and for our purposes we will be considering the plumber.

Let’s face it – not every plumber or electrician or painter is the same.  So, what do we look for?  One of the very first things, if not THE first thing that is considered is cost. Wanting to know the cost is understandable, but DON’T stop there!  The WHO is the very most important thing – WHO is going to be doing this work in your home.  Class, here is where you start the research – one note card per plumber.  😊  Consider the following:

  1. Is this a local company? I’ve had people ask specifically where we are located because they want to support a local company.
  2. Is this plumber licensed, bonded, and insured?
  3. How long have they been in business? Experience = expertise
  4. Look at their web site. A wealth of information can be found there
  5. Is this company a member of Better Business Bureau? What is their rating?
  6. Locate reviews. They can be found on the BBB, Google, on Facebook perhaps Angie’s List, or Nextdoor.  Consider both positive and negative reviews.  How did they respond to the negative reviews, and did they take the time to respond to both positive and negative reviews
  7. How will they treat my home? We have a ‘no mess left behind’ policy. How would you rate their customer service when you called?
  8. How would you rate their customer service when you called?
  9. Will they provide an estimate for your project?  With a description of your project we might be able to give you a ball park figure over the phone .  If not then we will schedule an onsite discussion and then provide a written estimate
  10. Last, but not least, is – what are your rates?

Hopefully by doing all the research you will come out with an A+ project.   In fact, we’ll help get you started.  Take your note card and write Aaron Kramer Plumbing in the top left-hand corner.  In the top right-hand corner write 937-898-0008; then call us to get started.  Class dismissed.

Holiday Disasters!

Aaron Kramer Plumbing  would like for all our customers and friends to enjoy your holiday celebrations without having to deal with any disasters interrupting your time together.  To avoid these disasters, we’d like to suggest the following

  1. Don’t stuff your garbage disposal with vegetable peelings, pastas, etc. that could clog the disposal.  We are suggesting that you reserve the stuffing for a part of your anatomy – and enjoy!  We won’t be available to snake your drain or replace the disposal. We’ll be closed the 25th
  2. Don’t stuff your toilet with paper and paper products. To put it delicately flush frequently to avoid overflowing the toilet.  We won’t be available to snake the toilet.  We’ll be closed the 25th
  3. Don’t’ let your toddlers drop their new hot wheels and other small toys down the toilet. They will probably not go down, but they will do a good job of clogging it.  How do you remove a small toy?  Many times, you don’t.  Your Christmas present to the family just might be a new toilet – installed after Christmas.  We’ll be closed the 25th
  4. Out-of-town company means lots of showers and lots of dishes to wash.  Space out showers and running the dishwasher to ensure having enough hot water.  Increasing the temperature of the water heater will not make it recover faster and we won’t be available for you to call and ask what is wrong with it.  We’ll be closed 25th

We wish our customers, friends and neighbors a wonderful holiday.  We will enjoy it also – did we say we’ll be closed? 

Call us on the 26th.  898-0008

Happy Holidays, 

Aaron Kramer Plumbing

RECALL! RECALL!

Recalls are nothing to sneeze at or blow off especially when it has to do with the safety of your family and home.  As a family who has had two fires, both from faulty appliances, we have learned the hard way.  One fire was caused by a faulty coffee pot that, not long AFTER our fire, was recalled.  That fire put us in temporary housing for over 3 weeks while our home was cleaned from stem to stern.  The second fire was caused by an insufficient amount of insulation between the oven and the drawer underneath.  That fire didn’t put us out of our home except for an hour or so sitting on our front porch while the fire department ran huge fans to clear out the smoke. 

The home appliance being recalled is a water heater.  These particular heaters have caused six fires with no injuries reported.  The water heaters in question were made by A.O. Smith and were sold under various trade names besides A.O. Smith – American, Kenmore, Reliance, State, U.S. Craftsmaster and Whirlpool.  The recall includes 30, 40 and 50 gallon natural or propane gas-fired water heaters – the Ultra-Low NOx.  These heaters were sold primarily in California, but it wouldn’t hurt to double check what you have installed in your home especially if it was installed between April 8, 2011 and August 1, 2016. 

If your water heater is one of these brands have written down the size, the model number and the serial number prior to going to the internet or calling.  (The serial numbers in the recall begin with 1115 to 1631.)

You can find out two ways if your water heater is included:

  1. Go to www.waterheaterrecall.com and have your model and serial number handy
  2. Call 1-866-854-2793 (for Whirlpool, U.S Caftmaster or American Water Heater brands) or call 1-866-880-4661 (for Reliance, State, A.O. Smith and Kenmore brands)

As a side note:  if your family doesn’t have a family fire escape plan, plan one NOW.  Our family practiced our escape plan and this is what we followed for the second fire when one of our kids woke us up asking, ‘why is the house full of smoke?’  Did we crawl down the steps?  You bet we did! 

The Plumber’s Secretary

 

 

OH NO!

   Falling             Means        Which Could Cause    Which Could Lead To

FALLING LEAVES

                    MAN FLOATING IN WATER

 

 

     Which means you need to call

   Aaron Kramer Plumbing

937-898-0008

DO’S, DON’TS, NEVERS, AND CHUCKLES – Third Edition

These are the last few random thoughts from your plumber’s secretary.  (If we aren’t your plumber, you don’t have to read this; but, on second thought, maybe your plumber doesn’t offer such enlightened information.  So, go ahead and read it.)

  1. Do ask your plumber questions. We like it when people ask questions about the problem and the solution.  What is difficult to handle is when people snort at the answers when they don’t like them.
  1. Don’t tell your plumber, “It’s an easy fix and shouldn’t take too long, right?” That is a hint that you expect the bill to be small. Remember that you have hired a licensed professional, not Uncle George, to fix the problem and our services are not free.  We also need to put food on the table!
  1. Never use wrenches or pliers to force a faucet to close. If you break the faucet, the water pouring out on your feet has now created a bigger problem.  Make a squishy run to the phone and call us. (937-898-0008)
  1. Don’t be surprised if we ask you to take a picture of the part you are referring to. We don’t know what thing-a-ma-bobs, do-hickeys, or thing-a-ma-jigs are.  The pictures can then be texted or emailed to us for identification.  Aren’t cell phones wonderful!?
  1. Do remember this – we enjoy talking with and helping our customers. After all, without you, we have no way to support our families.  We do our best to please and serve you; however, there are always some, who no matter what we do, are not satisfied or happy.  In that case, we say ‘I’m sorry – please feel free to call someone else. Thank you for calling (someone else. ) Did I say that?  Not out loud!

With sincerity and a few chuckles,

The Plumber’s Secretary

Aaron Kramer Plumbing

937-898-0008

937-434-7074

 

 

DO’S, DON’TS, NEVERS AND CHUCKLES

DO’S, DON’TS, NEVERS AND CHUCKLES   – Second Edition

Just a few more random thoughts from your plumber’s secretary.  (If we aren’t your plumber, you don’t have to read this; but, on second thought, maybe your plumber doesn’t offer such enlightening information.  So, go ahead and read it.)

  1. Never put a broom handle (yes, you read that right) or any other object into a jammed disposal to try and unjam it. You will be calling us.
  1. Don’t let toilets ‘run’ or faucets drip unless you like paying high water bills. The water company thanks you.
  1. Don’t buy universal parts for the plumber to use for a repair. There is a good possibility it won’t work; so let the plumber supply the correct parts and save yourself a return trip to the store.  Keep that receipt!
  1. Don’t use hangers or other objects to try and clear a drain. Poking a hole or damaging the pipe has just increased the cost of repairs, to say nothing of the clean up under the sink.  We don’t do that.
  1. Do listen to the advice of your plumber – not Uncle George, Grandpa, your neighbor or the guy selling you parts at the box store. Are any of these people licensed plumbers?  Probably not; however, we are.

With sincerity and a few chuckles,

The Plumber’s Secretary

By the way, look for the final edition of ‘Do’s, Don’ts, Nevers, and Chuckles’ from the ‘enlightened’ plumber’s secretary!