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Los Angeles Plumber Blog

The challenges of finding a plumber in Los Angeles


Finding a plumber in Los Angeles

The reality is that no one ever wants to call a plumber. It would be wonderful if your home and business never had any problems with their pipes, toilets or showers. How great would it be to have your plumbing system running free an clear without any issues for the life of your home or business. Unfortunately, for those of us who live in realville, plumbing emergencies can and will happen and usually they happen at the most inconvenient time imaginable.

JB Plumbing and Rooter is an amazing 24 hour, 7 days a week provider of plumbing in Los Angeles. So if you find yourself in real leaky trouble in the middle of the night, JB Plumbing can help by quickly dispatching one of our skilled plumbers right to your door. Rest assured that JB Los Angeles Plumbers will be there for you when you need us.Los Angeles Plumbing Tips

We are available to serve you anywhere in the Los Angeles area and many of its surrounding cities. We are equipped to handle your small leaks and your big drips, as well as any other plumbing issue.

We are highly skilled, completely reliable and a most trustworthy plumber here in Los Angeles and we would be honored if you trusted us with your next plumbing problem, big or small.

4 Steps to Unblocking Any Clogged Drain


Here at JB Plumbing and Rooter, your local plumber in Los Angeles, we know that not everyone has extra cash lying around to spend on unexpected plumbing issues. That’s why we’d like to share these four steps to take when handling a very common plumbing issue, clogged drains.

Plunger – The plunger is often the first step in taking care of clogged drains. Make sure to fill the sink partially with water, a quarter of the way full. If you have a double sink, you will need to block the other drain with a cloth. Then, plunge over the drain, up and down quickly, until the water in the sink starts to drain. If it does, it was just a small blockage, and your clogged drain is fixed!

Baking Soda and Vinegar – This should be your next step. Using a bucket, empty the water from the sink. Next, stuff about a cup of baking soda down the drain. Use a wooden spoon to pack it down. Next, pour a cup of vinegar down the sink and put the stopper in immediately to force the mixture down. The mixture will foam downwards into the pipes. Let the mixture work for five minutes and then proceed by running warm water down the drain. If it is still clogged, try four cups of boiling water. If you still have a clogged drain, it’s time to move on to the next step.

Cable Auger – This is a difficult method, and should not be attempted by amateur handymen. First, detach the trap or J-joint underneath the sink connecting the sink to the horizontal pipe. Use a bucket to catch the water. Next, remove the horizontal pipe from the wall, and then use the auger to slide down the stub pipe. Gently push the cable down by spinning the crank clockwise. Once you snag the clog, spin counter clockwise to recover the cable, and with any luck the blockage as well. This should unblock your clogged drain.

Call a Plumber – Finally, when all else has failed, its time to call your local plumber in Los Angeles. Continuing to try to unblock a clogged drain with other methods can often lead to terrible results. Really, the best advice is to contact your local plumber in Los Angeles.

Top 9 Things People Do that Cause Plumbing Problems


Top 9 Things People Do that Cause Plumbing Problems

1: Leaving hoses connected during winter.

Los Angeles Plumbing - Drain Cleaning & Repair

Drain Cleaning & Repair

This is a classic plumbing error and unlike holiday lights, hoses can cause damage when left out all year: they can lead to freezing the outdoor faucet or its water supply pipe and cause bursting pipes.

2: Using vent pipes for anything other than venting.

Vent pipes aren’t just there for their bad looks, they not only provide air to drains inside the house, to prevent a suction effect that inhibits drainage; they also get rid of sewer gases that come up from the city’s sewer main. If you cut a hole in your vent inside the house, you’re tapping into an endless supply of your neighborhood’s sewer air.

3. Using too much drain cleaner.

When used correctly, drain cleaners can be effective and relatively safe for drains. When used with incorrectly, they can corrode some drain materials, and they can actually make clogs worse.

4. Pouring chemicals (and other bad stuff) into a septic system.

You must think twice about using chemicals like drain cleaner, chlorine bleach, paint and even anti-bacterial soaps in your septic system. These chemicals kill the essential waste-eating bacteria in the septic tank, and can cause sewage backups into your home.

5: Screwing, nailing or cutting into a wall with hidden plumbing pipes.

Always be careful of hidden wall pipes when doing any kind of screwing or sawing into your drywall.

6: Joining two different metals in piping.

DIY plumbers beware: When dissimilar metals, such as copper and steel, are touching, a process called galvanic action leads to corrosion. Corrosion leads to leaks. Such joints must be made with a dielectric union or other approved fitting.

7: Pouring grease down the kitchen drain.

If you’re in the habit of pouring bacon grease down the kitchen-sink drain, you should stop this immediately. Grease is one of the best things for clogging drains.

8: Putting everything else down the kitchen drain.

Even if you’re not guilty of grease disposal, you might be one of those folks who thinks a garbage disposal in your sink can handle any food waste. Be weary of  flour, rice, potato peels (and some other veggie peels) and many fibrous foods such as asparagus and chard because they can quickly clog your drains.

9: Using the toilet as a trash can.

Flushing one improper item down the toilet ultimately can stop up everything in the house. The bottom line is, only human waste and toilet paper should be disposed of in your toilet.

5 Funny Noises from Your Plumbing and How to Stop Them


Los Angeles Plumbing TipsDon’t take your home’s plumbing for granted. Faucets, fixtures, and pipes often need repair or replacement and when they do, they usually make their presence known loud and clear. Here are 5 funny noises you might hear from plumbing which is in distress and a warning sign that it is time to call a local plumber in Los Angeles.

Faucet Drip, Drip, Drips
A faucet that drips on and on and on when it’s supposed to be turned firmly off is definitely annoying. In addition to the aural irritation, the noise is a reminder of the quantity of (expensive) water that you are involuntarily wasting. Most likely all that’s required is a new washer, but if the sink or bathtub hardware is more than 20 years old, you may be ready to replace your faucet, especially if you’ve been through this drippy story a few times before.

Another type of bothersome dripping may occur in your kitchen sink sprayer. Instead of gushing up like Old Faithful, your sprayer might gasp out just a trickle of water. When this happens, it could be that the diverter valve (which is located in the faucet handle) needs cleaning. Take it out and give it a good soak in a white vinegar solution before replacing. If this doesn’t do the trick, it might be time to call a local plumber in Los Angeles.

Faucet Squeaks
A squeaky faucet is another relatively minor problem that nevertheless has incredible nuisance value. Fortunately, this kind of faucet repair can generally be taken care of with a minimum of fuss or expense, via a washer change or an application of plumber’s grease to faucet handle stem threads that have worn down. Once again, though, a faucet which has outlived its useful lifespan may need replacement, rather than repair. If a replacement is needed, it might be time to call a local plumber in Los Angeles.

Pipes Screech or Whistle
While it may be annoying or even frightening, pipes that whistle, screech, squeal, or howl like a banshee when you turn on the faucet are not usually a major trouble spot. The main difficulty is in pinning down the precise source, as there are quite a few possible causes for the racket.

You may have air in your pipes. This is an easy DIY fix. Close the water shutoff valve and turn on the faucet full force until it drains dry. Then reopen the valve. You may have a bit of debris or other obstruction in your pipes. Flushing the system with water can help.

The pressure may not be turned up high enough. Short-term fix: turn on the faucet to full pressure every time. Longer-term repair: replace faucet washers or valve stem. Adjust your water pressure regulator. The water flow rate to individual plumbing fixtures may need adjustment.

Shower Whooshes or Rumbles
A disturbing whooshing or rumbling sound when you try to take a relaxing shower is probably caused by a buildup of mineral sediment (aka “lime scale”) in either the water heater or the pipes, common in regions with very hard water. Flush your water heater once a year to remove the scale. If the problem is in the plumbing pipes themselves, you may need to have them professionally cleaned by a local plumber in Los Angeles. In either case, consider installation of a water softening system to reduce this type of issue in the future.

Pipes Rattle
Sometimes a bizarre noise connected to your bathroom or kitchen fixtures may not be coming from the inside of your plumbing system, but rather the outside. For example, if your pipes have a tendency to shake, rattle, and roll, they may simply be loose. Securing them firmly in place could be all that is necessary to calm them — and you — down.

5 Easy Ways to Save Water During Drought


As a local plumber in Los Angeles, we know first hand just how difficult this historic drought has been for our community. Last year, we offered some drought tips to help you improve your water conservation. Unfortunately the drought still persists. Because we care about the environment and helping our customers save water and money on utility bills, we’ve come up with more tips to help save water during this drought. Feel free to call your local plumber in Los Angeles, JB Plumbing and Rooter, any time you have questions or need some advice.

Do Laundry and Dishes on an As-Needed Basis
You would be shocked at how much water you can save by wearing a pair of jeans or another item of clothing at least twice before doing a load of laundry. You can also wait to do a large load of dishes instead of running the dishwasher for just a few dishes.

Upgrade to a Water-Saving Toilet or Low-Flow Faucet
Many homeowners who have older toilets see a substantial difference in their water bills once they upgrade to a low-flush toilet. Installing a low-flow toilet or faucet is especially important during this drought season because most of the water in the bowl comes from our local fresh water supply.

Find Ways to Use the Last of the Water in Your Water Bottle
If you usually pour out that last ounce of water in your water bottles once it gets warm? Instead of pouring it down the drain, use it to water a houseplant, or pour it into your pet’s water bowl.

Use Re-claimed Water for Your Lawn and Garden
While drought season may not be the best time to use a rain barrel, you can use a rain barrel during the times of year when water is plentiful. Then store it in 5-gallon containers to use on your lawn and garden during the drought season.

Make Sure all Faucets are Completely Shut Off
Although it may not seem like a lot, dripping faucets can add up in the long term. When you take a shower or use the sink, be sure that the faucet is completely shut off when you are finished.

Los Angeles Plumbers – Spring is Best Time for a Plumbing Check-up


Los Angeles PlumberSpring is Best Time for a Plumbing Check-up

Spring has finally arrived and it’s time to make some quick observations around your home. Here are some very valuable plumbing tips for you to think about as the weather starts to warm.

Start by checking the kitchen, bathroom,  appliances, and more common areas, both within and outside the home. By doing this, you can be prepared and help prevent any plumbing problems that occur. Including this in your spring cleaning project is a great way to get it done.

Check your drains, gutters and downspouts – which should be clear and free of debris to ensure proper operation. Many regions of the country experience a large amount of rainfall this time of year and you want to make sure you’re ready. If you let the debris build up, gutters and drains can clog, causing water damage, leakage and mold growth and that is certainly not something you want to deal with!

You should also make sure your plumbing pipes and vents are clear of bird nests, leaves, sticks and any other sort of debris.

Springtime is also a Good Time to Check Your Hose Bib

Check out the faucet for leaks – this is especially common in colder climates where hoses have been left on the hose bib for the winter. If the water supply pipe has frozen the once frozen pipe can be expanded and may have cracked. This pipe will leak and should be replaced as soon as possible by your local plumber, before water damage can occur.

To Avoid Flooding Concerns, its Always a Good Idea to Make Sure Your Sump Pump is Functioning Properly.

The most important thing you can do to keep your plumbing system safe this spring is to make sure your sump pump is primed and ready for some hard work. If you are not sure about your Sump Pump, test it by pouring a few buckets of water into the sump pit. The pump should kick on in a few seconds, allow the flow of water and then turn itself off automatically. If it does not do it, call your local plumber and have the sump pump tested and checked by a professional to avoid costly damage to your home and property.

Other Plumbing Repair Tips

Check the faucet in the kitchen and bathroom for leaks. Finding and stopping leaks will SAVE you money. Make sure you have your filters on each drain. This will prevent hair, soap and other substances from clogging your drains.

Check your toilet for leaks. A fast and inexpensive way to do this is to put a few drops of food coloring in your toilet tank. If there is a leak, the food color will end up in the bowl within half an hour. While you’re at it, check out the bowl for any cracks or leaks.

Check your toilets to make sure they are flushing correctly. If you must hold or shake the handle, you need to replace the parts of the toilet which are responsible for flushing. They do not cost much and in fact will save you money on your water bill.

Check your water supply valve by turning on and off occasionally. This will prevent them from sticking.

Finally, clean your shower head with vinegar to remove mineral deposits that can clog. I know most people don’t know this little trick of the trade. Take a plastic Ziplock bag and fill it with white vinegar. Place the Ziplock bag on the shower head iand wrap the bag with a few heavy rubber bands securing the bag to the shower head. Leave for 24 hrs and the mineral deposits should breakdown leaving your shower clean as a whistle.

Completing this inspection now will prepare your home for spring and will help you discover sooner and not later any damages caused by the winter months.

Summer Is The Home Buying Season


Summer is the “home buying” season. Many new homebuyers find out too late that their dream home is riddled with water leakage or a poor plumbing system. Many new owners need to call a plumber within one year of purchasing their home.

Here are some great tips to check before you buy:

  • Water stains on the walls or ceiling could be a sign of leaky pipes.
  • Check for leaky or loose tiles by pressing on the walls where they come in contact with the bathtub. If the walls are soft, water may have created damage behind the tiles. Leaky pipes don’t have to be expensive to fix, but if they’ve already done some damage, the repair costs could stack up. 
  • Check for lead pipes: Lead is an environmental hazard. Period. Homes built prior to 1998 often have lead or galvanized plumbing, so keep this in mind when considering home prospects.
  • Make sure you’re on the lookout for moldy spots, as well
  • If the home has a basement, check exposed piping for signs of leaking or recent repairs.
  • A rusty water tank is a sign of pending problems.
  • Survey the inside of cabinets (with a flashlight) for signs of water damage, warped cabinet bottom or stains. Make sure that traps and supply tubes are not leaking.
  •  One way to determine how the water pressure might work throughout the home is to turn on the shower farthest away from the water source. If that upstairs shower has great water pressure, it’s likely that the rest of the home does, too.

It’s a good idea to call a plumber BEFORE you buy. Call Us: (323) 559-3053

Drought Tips: How to Improve Your Water Conservation


Remarkably dry conditions have lead many to call this the worst drought in our state’s history. Last month, the city of Los Angeles started a program in which you can now be fined for excessive use of water.

While everyone knows the basics of water conservation (shorter showers, watering the lawn less frequently), there are some innovative methods you might not have considered. As a Los Angeles plumber, we feel obligated to share them with you.

Re-use shower water

Most know that you can reduce the amount of your shower, but you can take it further! Instead of letting all of that water go down the drain, save it! Just put a bucket on the shower floor to catch your runoff. Then use it to water your garden. You can easily save yourself a few gallons of water!

Check for outdoor leaks

As a Los Angeles plumber, we really encourage this next method. Outdoor leaks can drive up your water bill and even make you a target for the officials tasked with finding restriction violators. To make sure you’re okay, perform a weekly check of your outside fixtures. Or if you feel uncomfortable doing this, J.B. Plumbing can help! Any nozzle or sink that drips should be attended to. If merely turning it off doesn’t work, you could have a larger problem. If so, it’s time to call the best plumber Los Angeles has to offer, J.B. Plumbing!

Live / vacation off the grid

While this may seem a bit intense to some, many people have found that being exclusively accountable for their own home and utilities is profoundly rewarding. As an alternative to traditional water mains, off-the-grid residents draw their water from wells. A professional can dig into the ground and tap into the water supply that exists naturally in the sub-surface. If you’re drawn to the solitary lifestyle but not sure you want to commit to it full time, try a short-term vacation. At the very least, you’ll save a little water in the meantime.

And just remember JB Plumbing and Rooter, your Los Angeles Plumber, is an amazing 24 hour, 7 days a week provider of plumbing in Los Angeles. So if you find yourself in real leaky trouble in the middle of the night, JB Plumbing can help by quickly dispatching one of our skilled plumbers right to your door. Rest assured that JB Los Angeles Plumbers will be there for you when you need us.

Does Your Plumbing System Have A Leak? Here Are The Signs.


It’s not always easy to know if a leak exists in your plumbing system. As a trusted local plumber in Los Angeles, we know what to look for and we want to share with you some helpful tips. First, when it comes to leaks, most of the time, at least one of the signs that you have a leak is clearly visible or audible. You simply need to be on the lookout for it.

Here are some of the signs to be on the lookout for:

– The sound of dripping water behind walls.
– Wet or damp walls, ceilings, or floor.
– Bad odors coming from a specific area of the home where water pipes are located.
– Unusually high water meter readings or bills, particularly if you have been away on vacation.
– Visible signs of damage to any area where water pipes are located.

Its important to keep an eye for these signs because leaks can cause damage. Even a minor leak can cause structural damage to your home. Continual dripping of the water can lead to staining, foul odors, cracks, discoloration, and the breakdown of your floors, walls, and foundation. So don’t hesitate if you see one of these signs. Call your trusted local plumber in Los Angeles. JB Plumbing and Rooter.

Know Whether to Replace or Repair a Water Heater


Sudden, unexplained icy shower? Or maybe you found unexpected giant puddle in your basement or garage. It would seem that your water heater not operating normally. You now have to decide: Repair or replace? Which ever choice you go with, you’ll need a local plumber in Los Angeles that you can trust. That’s were JB Plumbing and Rooter comes in.

Most storage-tank water heaters have a life span of about ten years. If your water heater is only a few years old, repair may be the best option.

Because water heaters contain few moving parts, only a few things can go wrong and repair is straightforward. For gas water heaters, the pilot light can flicker out. For electric heaters, the circuit breaker could be tripped. Also, the thermostat could break or the valve sticks.

But if your problem happens in the latter years of the life span or if the unit is leaking, replacing your water heater is probably the better option.

If the tank is over ten years old, or if it is leaking, a new water tank is likely in your future. Over time, water minerals react with steel, corroding water heater tanks. Once a water heater tank springs a leak, it has to be swapped.

Newer water tanks are twenty percent more efficient, thus saving you money over the life of the water tank versus keeping an older water tank. New glass liners make tanks less prone to corrosion. Manufacturers now inject foam insulation between the tank and the outer shell, resulting in higher heat retention.

You can also replace with a tankless, heat pump, or solar water heater. These options are more costly upfront, but they offer a longer lifespan of up to thirty years.

Some replacement jobs might be just as simple as taking out the old heater and installing the new. You may have to also replace the mount, venting system, drain pan, or supply pipes as well.

Whether you repair or replace your water heater, they will last longer and perform better with regular maintenance. You can have a local plumber in Los Angeles come out and check your unit periodically.

At JB Plumbing and Rooter, we can help you solve these problems no matter which option you choose.