Tag Archives: plumbing services

SILENT – BUT, DEADLY

SILENT – BUT, DEADLY

Normally, when we write our blogs, we try to give them catchy titles and start out with a little humor. This one, however, deals with a very serious and potentially deadly problem that may exist in your home, and you may not realize it until it is too late. This potential problem is the presence of carbon monoxide (CO).

In the last two years in our area three children and an elderly husband and wife have lost their lives to this ‘silent killer’.  Carbon monoxide is an invisible, colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is produced by fuel-fired appliances, generators, space heaters, and automobiles. When CO is inhaled, it replaces the oxygen in the blood, preventing oxygen from getting to our organs.  The gas can first cause flu-like symptoms, followed by disorientation, then unconsciousness, with the end result being death.

If a household appliance malfunctions, the gas could be allowed to dissipate throughout your home. Generators and space heaters can also produce CO.  For this reason, if you are using a generator that burns gas or propane, the generator should be at least 20’ from the house, and NEVER be used in the house or in the garage. You may have an all-electric home, but if you have an attached garage, you may also be at risk. Leaving a car running in the garage with the door up or down will allow the gas to seep into your home.

Potential harm to your family can be prevented with the installation of CO alarms. These alarms emit a loud, beeping pattern that goes off when CO is detected. The loud beeping doesn’t stop until the CO level has been decreased.  These alarms do not prevent or correct the problem; their purpose is only to alert you to the presence of CO.

The Residential Code of Ohio stipulates that the CO alarms be located outside the bedroom group in the home.  If there are bedrooms on every floor, then a unit should be installed on each floor outside these rooms.  Kidde, an alarm manufacturer, has in their manual to install one on each floor, regardless if there are bedrooms on the floor.  Kidde also stipulates that the unit should not be installed within 5’ of an appliance; and in the case of a water heater and/or furnace, it should be no closer than 15’. Deep cell marine batteries such as those that are used with battery back-up pumps, also produce CO, and the alarm should be located 5’ or more away from these batteries to prevent nuisance alarms.

Once an alarm has sounded, open the nearest window and/or doors, and/or leave the house immediately and call 911.  If you are unable to leave, stay by the open window.  If you leave the house, do not return for any reason.  Once the CO level has gone down, the source of the CO must be found. The first responders may be able to determine the source, but the repairs will need to be made by a plumbing and/or HVAC technician who is licensed, bonded, and insured.  They should check any fuel fired appliance in your home.  Do not turn on any appliance until it has been evaluated by a licensed technician.

Alarms for just carbon monoxide can be purchased, and there are also combination alarms for both smoke and CO. No matter which unit is purchased, it is the home owner’s responsibility to read through the entire manufacturer’s manual and follow the directions to the letter. Test the units weekly, and keep track of their age. They can be purchased on-line, at Home Depot, Lowe’s, and local hardware stores.  Some communities also give away free CO detectors to their residents.  Call your local fire department to see if such a program is available in your area.

The best way to protect your family and keep them safe is to be knowledgeable about the effects of carbon monoxide and install alarms in your home.    Your family is depending on you.

Your family also depends on you to make sure they have hot water, working toilets and faucets, a quiet garbage disposal, plus all of your other plumbing needs. You can depend on Aaron Kramer Plumbing to make sure that your plumbing is in working order.  Give us a call today at 937-898-0008

 

 

THE FORTUNE COOKIE

THE FORTUNE COOKIE

My grandchildren, all eight of them, love fortune cookies – both to eat and read. They always want me to read the fortune to them, and then give me a blank stare – they understand nothing of what it says. Personally, I usually ignore them – until this last one. It read as follows: Business is lot like playing tennis; if you don’t serve well, you lose! In tennis, that opening volley, the serve, is everything. You miss that first shot, you’re done. This same thing applies in business. The opening ‘serve’ is everything to a business, that first impression. That ‘serve’ must be done right from the beginning; there is no do-over.

For seventeen years I’ve been the primary voice on the phone for this company, and I realized the first day that the ‘volley’ that I left with the person on the other end of the call had to be a favorable one. If the caller was not ‘served’ well, we would lose. We would not only lose them as a customer, but if they said anything to anyone else, we would lose again, and could keep losing – like a ripple effect in a pond. Customers have called crying; wives angry with their DIY’er husbands have called; and some have called who not only have diagnosed the problem, but they also tell me how long they think it will take to repair it – so it isn’t going to cost much, right?

No matter what the situation, they all have to be handled in the right way, or we lose. You want that customer to tell others that the people at that company are friendly, cheerful, accommodating, knowledgeable, and they listened to me when I explained my problem. You must give that customer the feeling that at that moment they are the most important thing you have to deal with, and that you are there to ‘serve’ them. As in tennis, if you don’t serve well, you lose; that same thing is true in business.

Aaron Kramer Plumbing would like you to be our next customer. Our services include repairing/replacing faucets; repairing/replacing toilets; replacing garbage disposals and sump pumps; repairing/installing water heaters; installing laundry tubs; locating and repairing pipe leaks; and diagnosing high water bills. Please call Aaron Kramer Plumbing today and check out our ‘serve’. 1-937-898-0008

WHAT SHAPE IS YOUR ‘SILLCOCK’ IN?

My what?  My sillcock?  You probably know it as a hose bib, exterior faucet, or outside spigot.  As to the ‘shape’ of your faucet, we are referring to its condition.  Your home is probably the most important asset you own, and minor plumbing issues can turn into major issues if not caught immediately.

Temperatures are warming up (THANKFULLY!) and in the next few months your exterior faucet is going to get quite a work out.  Very soon, if not already, many of you are going to be out preparing flower beds and/or gardens for planting, as well as washing the family vehicle.  Having an exterior faucet in working order will be a must.

Leaving your hose connected during the winter could cause damage to your faucet.  A leaking exterior faucet will increase  your water bill, and if it leaks in the house, the damage done could be extensive.

We would like to suggest that when you turn the faucet on, watch for leaks from the body or handle, and also any leaking from visible piping.  We also recommend that  you check the inside of the house – the basement, under the kitchen sink – any place where the water line for the exterior faucet ties in.  Without checking inside, water could be leaking for sometime before it is found.

To protect your home this next winter, we recommend that you do the following:

1.  Disconnect the hose and store it in the garage.

2.  Turn off the shut off valve on the water line to the exterior faucet.  (If there is no shut off valve, we recommend that you have one installed.)

3.  Purchase a foam cover for the faucet from a home center and put it over the faucet.  This will insulate it and hopefully prevent freezing.

Terms such as ‘sillcock’ may seem out-of-date, but we need to stay on top of things in our homes to keep them up-to-date and in good working order.  Give Aaron Kramer Plumbing a call at the first sign of any issues with your exterior faucet.  Please call us today at 937-898-0008.

AND THE COUNT DOWN BEGINS!

Count down? To what? Actually, there are a few things that we are ‘counting down’ to. We are probably all counting down to the first day of summer, kids (AND TEACHERS) are counting down to their last day of school, and families are counting down to when they leave on that long awaited vacation. Aaron Kramer Plumbing would like to offer a ‘count-down’ list of things to do prior to being away from your home, even if it is just for a day or if it is for an extended period of time.

1. When leaving for a day at the lake or park, a long weekend, or for an extended vacation, we suggest turning off the main water shut off valve to the house. (Recently, a family who was gone for just the day came home to find that the supply line to the toilet had ruptured. The water ran most of the day causing major water damage to two stories of their home.)
2. Have a trusted neighbor or family member check your home daily by doing a walk-through making sure doors and windows are (still) locked.
3. Don’t allow mail and/or newspapers to pile up thus alerting someone that no one is home.
4. Leave a couple of lights on or on a time along with a radio or tv giving the impression that someone is home.
5. Keep the yard mowed and flowerbeds weeded.
6. Have a neighbor park their car in the driveway, especially at night.
7. Alert your local police that you will be gone and supply them and a neighbor or two your contact information.

Begin your ‘count-down’ now and enjoy your summer with family and friends knowing that you have done all you can to protect your home. For information about the services offered by Aaron Kramer Plumbing, your local Dayton, Ohio plumber, please browse our web site at www.aaronkramerplumbing.com and/or call our office at 937-898-0008 or 937-434-7470.