ABC Blog

Why Is My Water Softener Leaking?

a kitchen with stainless steel appliances

A leaking water softener is an irritating problem to have in your home. Not only can the leak cause quite a mess, but it can also impact the appliance’s ability to do its job. Without a properly working water softener, you may start noticing signs of hard water again. For example, your home’s water might leave spots and residue on your glasses and faucets, and start to dry out your skin and hair. This is why it is important to identify the source of the leak before it becomes an even bigger problem.

As with any kind of appliance, water softeners only last for a certain amount of time. Their typical lifespan is around 10 to 15 years. At this point, the water softener can start to have issues like leaks or could stop working altogether. However, having a leak does not necessarily mean that it is time to buy a … Read Full Post »

Why Is My Water Bill So High?

a home with a slab leak

When homeowners notice a spike in their water bill, it can often lead to finger-pointing and frustration. Maybe you’re just noticing that your water pressure isn’t as great as it used to be or your toilet won’t flush all the way. Most homeowners find that an increase in their water bill is due to a leak or change in water use. If you have kids home from college or a new garden that you’re watering more, you also may see an increase in your water bill. And, did you know something as simple as a dripping faucet can waste more than 20 gallons of water a day?

Other common high water bill culprits include:

  • A leaky toilet
  • Filling or topping off a swimming pool
  • A leaking or malfunctioning sprinkler system
  • Malfunctioning humidifiers attached to a furnace
  • Hosting guests
  • Large leaks, … Read Full Post »

Why Is My Tankless Water Heater Not Heating?

a cold shower because the tankless water heater is not heating up

In normal circumstances, tankless water heaters usually have many benefits. These types of heaters are known for saving homeowners money and providing hot water more quickly than other kinds of water heaters. But, when your tankless water heater is not heating properly, it can make for a really bad day—especially if it stops working when your friends or other guests are visiting.

There are several different reasons why a tankless water heater would not be heating.

Sediment Buildup

Over time, mineral sediments can build up in your water heater and throughout your plumbing system. This holds especially true if the water supply in your area is “hard” or has a high concentration of minerals. When this happens, water leaves behind particles of magnesium, calcium and other minerals wherever it goes. This includes your water heater, pipes, water filter and other parts of your home’s plumbing system.

If a thick layer of minerals builds up, … Read Full Post »

Is a Water Softener Worth It?

a sink and dishwasher that would benefit from a water softener because hard water is wearing down the appliances

Water softeners are valuable for many different reasons. They can lengthen the lifespan of your home’s appliances and prevent your family’s skin and hair from getting dry and itchy. Water softeners can also help prevent minerals from building up inside your pipes and water fixtures. Plus, they can reduce spots on glassware and soap scum in your sink and tub.

However, not everyone needs a water softener. You really only need one if you have hard water in your home. Otherwise, if your water is already soft, then using a water softener doesn’t have many benefits.

Water softeners work by removing unwanted minerals, such as magnesium and calcium, from the water in your home’s plumbing. Magnesium and calcium are both positive ions. The resin beads in a water softener hold negative sodium ions. As water flows through the softener, the resin beads in the water softener attract the minerals that need to … Read Full Post »

What Is a Slab Leak?

a home with a slab leak

Many homeowners have heard the term “slab leak”. But, what does it mean and how would you know if you had one? These types of leaks can be quite a concern, as they can end up costing a pretty penny.

For starters, the term slab refers to the concrete slab that many homes are built on. If you have a slab leak, it means that there is water leaking under your home’s foundation. This can happen if you have pipes running under or through your foundation that burst or crack.

Slab leaks often happen when plumbing gets older and wears down over time. However, pipes can also break due to other factors. For example, leaks can occur if your pipes were not installed correctly or were damaged during the construction of your home. This can also happen if minerals in your water have corroded your pipes.

It’s important to detect and fix slab … Read Full Post »

What if My Toilet Won’t Flush All the Way?

a toilet that won't flush all the way

It’s annoying when your toilet won’t flush all the way. This problem is already bad enough if it’s just you in the house, but it’s especially frustrating if it happens when family is visiting or you’re hosting a gathering. Not only is it gross when the contents of your toilet bowl don’t completely empty when you flush, but it’s also concerning. This could be an initial sign of a larger issue that could lead to messy and expensive problems.

When you push the handle on your toilet, this should start a chain reaction. The handle should lift a stopper, which should then allow water to flow into the toilet bowl. Then, all the contents flow out through the drain in the bottom. However, this process doesn’t always work, which means that the contents in the bowl might get left behind. There are a few different reasons why you may be having … Read Full Post »

How Long Do Water Softeners Last?

a kitchen with white cabinets

Softening water can help prolong the life of your home’s pipes, water heater and other appliances. Plus, it can make your water easier on your skin and hair. This is because hard water not only dries out people’s skin, but the sediment in hard water can also build up in your plumbing.

Water softeners work for about 10 to 15 years, but a variety of factors can affect how long the equipment lasts. For one, the quality and type of water softener that you own matters. This is because some types of water softeners can degrade more quickly. For instance, water softeners that run on a timer system instead of on-demand may run through water and regenerate more often than needed. These systems replenish salt based on a set schedule, even if you haven’t been using much water. This can make the system work much harder than it needs to and … Read Full Post »

Tankless Water Heaters vs. Tank: Which is Best?

tank water heater

When your water heater starts making knocking noises or stops providing adequate hot water for your home—or, worse, it bursts—it’s time to decide on a replacement model that will best fit your needs. When you start looking into the options, however, you might feel overwhelmed by all the choices that are available. Which are better—tankless water heaters or tank water heaters? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each type, and which kind is right for your particular home?

If you’re considering making the switch from a traditional tank model to a tankless water heater, it could seem especially daunting to decide whether this is the right move. Tankless heaters typically have higher price tags than tank heaters, though their operating costs over time are lower. Even knowing they’ll likely save money over time, many people balk at the prospect of spending so much money up front.

Of course, there are other … Read Full Post »

Causes of Low Water Pressure in Kitchen Sink

low water pressure in a kitchen sink

If you begin noticing that the water coming out of your kitchen faucet doesn’t have as much pressure as it should, the first thing to check is whether it’s a whole-house issue. Are all the taps affected, or only the kitchen sink? If the kitchen is the only tap with low pressure, it’s time to consider the potential causes of low water pressure in a kitchen sink so you can determine what might be causing it, and fix it.

The most common causes of low water pressure in a kitchen sink are a clogged aerator or a clogged cartridge. The aerator is the part of the faucet that is at the very end of the spout; it is the last thing the water touches before it comes out into the sink. Most aerators become clogged over time due to mineral deposits in hard water. Fortunately, they are simple to clean when … Read Full Post »

Why Clogged Drains From Washing Machines Occur

A front-load washing machine filled to the brim with clothes

It’s frustrating to put a load of laundry in the washer and press start, only to wind up a half-hour later with a machine full of wet clothes and dirty water that won’t drain. When this happens, it’s most likely because your washing machine drain has a blockage that needs to be cleared before the water can properly exit the machine. The most common reason for a clogged drain from washing machine is an issue with the filter.

Appliance repair specialists find all sorts of items—most commonly, socks, underwear and baby clothes—that have gotten stuck in washing machine filters during the wash or spin cycle. This happens because it’s easy for small items to slip through, block the filter and prevent the washer from draining properly. If your washer isn’t a front-load type of washing machine, however, the problem is likely due to something else, as only front-loading machines are equipped … Read Full Post »