Author Archives: greg

navien-1

A Plumber’s Road Trip: Navien

Last month the G&C Plumbing and Heating crew took a road trip to New Jersey to complete a two-day training on Navien boilers and tankless water heaters. They are pretty pumped about what they learned and are now certified and trained to install and service all Navien products. Here’s what they had to say about the experience.

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Navien – A global leader in energy efficient and water saving technology

“This brand is the top of the line,” said Greg Sheck, Grand Master Plumber from G&C. “We spent approximately 14 hours in lectures and in hands-on and interactive product training to become experts in this amazing technology for our clients.”

Navien was an early leader in developing condensing technology for boilers and water heaters. What makes them so unique is the systems use condensing technology to maximizes energy savings by capturing additional heat from the flue gasses (that is conservation thinking down to the molecular level). As a result, energy consumption and greenhouse gases are significantly reduced with Navien products and the tankless technology also saves water and energy by only heating water when you need it.

“We took a road trip to New Jersey because we care about keeping up with top-of-the-line products and knowing how to install and service them, but it was also a great teambuilding experience,” said Brandon Sheck, Greg’s top-notch plumbing son.

What impresses Greg and Brandon most about Navien boilers and tankless water hearts is the NPE-Advanced ComfortFlow® technology used for continuous hot water. “This design looks and acts like something you’d see on a space station,” said Brandon. These were his favorite highlights:

  • The internal recirculation pump and buffer tank,
  • It earns up to 3 Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) points with recirculation,
  • It lowers the Home Energy Rating (HER) index score,
  • It’s Wi-Fi enabled with NaviLink®,
  • It has an optional HotButton™ on demand control kit, and
  • It was the 2013 Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating (AHR) Innovation Award Winner.

Here is where the guys totally nerd out on you…

“I was very impressed how the system incorporates a built-in insulated buffer tank and recirculation pump,” said Greg. “The buffer tank eliminates that bunched-up cold water you often get when you first turn on some on-demand heaters.”

“I think clients will like that the system has similar technology to the popular Nest in that it uses NaviLink™ module to connect to any new Navien NPE series tankless water heater, NCB-E series combi-boiler, NHB series and NFB series boiler so you can turn a unit on or off, change the water temperature, monitor system status and even activate the recirculation system on the NPE-A tankless water heater,” continued Brandon.

Naiven Products the Guys Totally Love

So, now that the G&C team is certified to install and service all Navien products (and maybe a bit obsessed about the technology), here are a couple for you to check out

  • Navien NPE-A and NPE-S units replace inefficient tank heaters, saving water, natural gas and electricity with added benefits of endless supply of hot water, lower maintenance costs and longer product life. You can cascade up to 16 units in side by side or back to back configurations. The Ready-Link Manifold System provides everything an installer needs for a side-by-side wall-mounted application, side-by-side floor-mounted rack application or floor-mounted back-to-back applications.
  • Navien NCB-E is the first high efficiency condensing combination boiler with the capacity to supply both heat and domestic hot water for larger homes — enough hydronic heat for a whole house, plus hot water to run two showers and a dishwasher all at the same time.

Want more information about Navien boilers and tankless water heaters? Call the guys at G&C Plumbing and Heating today – they learned more about these technology wonders than in two days than most kids learn in a year at school! (Happy Back to School, by the way!)

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G&C Teams Up with Random Smile Project

The Booster’s Club from King Phillip High School in Wrentham sent out a call for businesses to team up with the Random Smile Project to help renovate the high school’s coveted Snack Shack and guess which amazing plumbing team stepped up to answer the call – G&C Plumbing and Heating – you betcha!

“King Phillip High School is where Christine and I went to school, and when the king calls, I answer,” said Greg Sheck, Grand Master Plumber and life-long Warrior from G&C Plumbing and Heating. (In case you’ve forgotten, Christine is the love of Greg’s life and the “C” in G&C!)

Greg and Brandon Sheck worked with the Random Smile Project to provide plumbing services to renovate the Snack Shack which needed to have new appliances hooked up and all the plumbing updated and set to code.

The Random Smile Project provides a bridge of support to people or organizations in need of assistance. The Project has completed multiple accessibility upgrades and renovation projects like wheelchair ramps, handicap bathroom conversions, and home repair. The Snack Shack remodel is yet another example of how the Random Smile Project promotes the spirit of giving and receiving that reflects the greater good of what a community really is.

“It’s important for us to give back to this community that supports us in so many ways like waves when we drive by in the G&C van, business referrals, and just a great place to call home,” said Sheck.

A bit about Greg’s alma mater and the Snack Shack

King Philip Regional High School is a regional high school in Massachusetts that draws students from Wrentham, Norfolk, and Plainville. The Warriors compete with eleven other area school districts in the Hockomock League. The school colors are green and gold, and the school mascot is (obviously) “The Warrior.” The Warriors have won several Hockomock League Championships and State titles in recent years including the Division 1A state championship in football in 2016 and 2017. The Snack Shack is the place to see and be seen at all Warrior home games!

G&C worked with the KP Sports Boosters, Random Smile Project, and a local Eagle Scout to help reduce the costs involved in remodeling the iconic Snack Shack. “I can’t wait to go back for a home game and see everyone enjoying the new Shack,” said Sheck.

Thanks for helping out our community, guys!

Ok, we know you’ve been waiting with bated breath for the last two weeks to hear more about the dual flush toilet and here we are telling you about all the wonderful things the guys are going outside of work. We promise, we’ve not forgotten!

 

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Dual Flush Toilets – Save the Extra Water for Your Number Twos

The way water is used to remove waste from your John has a lot to do with how much water is needed to get the job done. Thus, it doesn’t take much imagination to figure out that flushing liquid waste wouldn’t require as much water as flushing solid waste. Yet, standard toilets use a siphoning action to evacuate waste all the same, and many times that’s just wasting water. Greg and Brandon from G&C Plumbing and Heating can save you some money and the planet some water by installing a dual flush toilet to deal with your dual waste dilemma.

The standard toilet has one job

“No one likes to have to flush the toilet twice to get everything down,” said Grand Master Plumber and Waste Flushing Extraordinaire Greg Sheck. “So, the standard toilet uses a high volume of water to fill the siphon tube and pull the waste and water in your toilet bowl down the drain.”

Dual flush toilets have a larger hole (AKA trapway) at the bottom of the bowl and a flushing design that actually pushes waste down the drain instead of siphoning.  “The larger trapway makes it easy for waste to exit the bowl, requiring less water per flush even for solid waste,” said Greg. “For liquid waste, the dual flush toilet has a half-flush button on the top of the tank. Between these two design elements, a dual flush toilet can save you over 50 percent more water than even a conventional low-flow standard toilet.”

Fun Fact: When flushing solids, a dual flush toilet uses 1.6 gallons of water and only 0.8 gallons when flushing liquids.

Call the guys at G&C to see about installing or improving your dual flush toilet

Even if you’re ahead of the game on saving money and water in your bathroom, Greg and Brandon can help with some maintenance tips on your dual flush model to improve its functionality. (Check out the guys in action in this video)

The dual flush model has a completely different design than a standard toilet and it can seem a bit alien like if you’re not used to this John’s capabilities!

Next time, the guys will share some tips for all of you do-it-yourselfers out there to tweak your dual flush John to perform at optimal levels (or you can call them out and they’ll do it for you)!

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Importance of Annual Maintenance on Your Instantaneous Water Heater

Tankless water heaters are the bomb! They are quiet and super-efficient, but what many people don’t realize is that tankless water heaters need maintenance as well. And much of the maintenance completed for tank water heaters is similar to the maintenance performed on tanks. Summer is the perfect time to run some annual maintenance on your system.

We’ll let Greg and Brandon from G&C Plumbing and Heating tell you more.

“Scaling can have a major effect on a water heater because the mineral buildup clangs around in the tank and causes problems with pressure, temperature, and potential corrosion,” said Greg Sheck, Grand Master from G&C. “Tank water heaters need flushing every now and then to offset this effect.”

  • Water has a high content of minerals in it – Calcium and magnesium being the most common. When mineral deposits are left behind in appliances or pipes, it’s called “scaling.”
  • Scaling can affect the heat exchanger of your tankless water heater. “That’s what heats up the water in the first place” said Greg. “You need it to be clean, so the water heats efficiently.”
  • Scaling makes your burners work harder and can overwork an on-demand system to the point that it breaks down – noooooooo!

The guys at G&C use a noncorrosive solution to clean the heat exchanger and recommend you have them come out to service the system annually. Otherwise, you can see what happens here when you DON’T keep the filter clean.

Even with annual maintenance, most tankless systems typically last for about 20 years. If your system starts to fail much sooner than this, it may be due to a lack of maintenance and whether you start to do it yourself or call Greg and Brandon, here are some things to know and assist with maintenance tasks:

  • What type of water heater do you have?
  • Is your water heater natural gas, electric or propane?
  • Is it a basic tank or a tankless design?
  • What is the serial number?
  • How do you turn off the water?
  • How do you shut off the fuel or power supply?
  • Is the water heater area clear?

The more you know is better for the guys – that’s what they tell us, anyway! If you need help or have questions about your instantaneous water heater (any water heater, actually) please give Greg and Brandon a call and they’ll be happy to help keep your system in good working order.

Casey

Introducing Mr. Casey Perry

Last time we introduced you to G&C Plumbing and Heating’s new team member, and next Star Lord, Chris Goguen. This time we have another awesome team member to tell you about – Casey Perry! But, listen, we need to admit ahead of time we totally let Casey down in finding that one awesome superhero/actor/singer/social light to make “punny” famous references to, like we did for Chris. Nothing worked and let me tell you we tried. Here is the list so you know we put some serious effort in: Perry Mason, Steve Perry, Katy Perry, Perry Como, Tyler Perry, and Bryan Ferry.

Sorry Casey.

What were we going to do, tell you Casey Perry is a master plumber and gas fitter master process pipe fitter just like Perry Mason was a master public defender and only lost one case on black and white reruns?

Or that Casey Perry was drawn to working at G&C Plumbing and Heating because of their core values and pride in customer service just like Katy Perry was drawn to becoming a judge on American Idol as a way to revive her popularity?

We spent days trying.

This was one of our best: The name of Tyler Perry’s next hit movie could be “Casey Perry” makes repairs on frozen plumbing pipes under a mobile home in negative temperatures and doesn’t loose his mine. See, we used Casey Perry there instead of the Tyler Perry because plumbing repairs under mobile homes in the freezing cold are one of the craziest jobs Casey Perry has ever done and Tyler Perry make movies with sarcastic and often long titles.

Forget it.

(Casey Perry does bring professional and friendly service to G&C just like Steve Perry brought real talent to Journey – that’s just the honest to goodness truth).

So, we are going skip the hoopla and straight-up introduce you to this great guy who’s working with Greg, Brandon, Christine, and Chris at G&C. Here are some interesting facts:

“I have 20 years of plumbing and heating experience and a willingness to learn from and teach my co-workers,” said Perry (not Steve, Katy, or Tyler).

  • Casey tells us that if he were stranded on a deserted island and could bring one item with him, it would be his torch – and that is pretty darn smart (although Christine would bring a boat).
  • When friends or family try to trick Casey into coming over to fix their plumbing he tells them to “get the food cooking!”
  • Finally, and this is a good one, Casey’s favorite plumbing joke is “your brown is our green.”

Welcome Casey!

The guys are super happy to have you onboard and we know customers will enjoy your professionalism!

 

chris

Move Over Chris Pratt

Sure, Chris Pratt (AKA Star Lord) was pretty cool in the recent Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War (spoiler alert – he was the closest to getting the infinity gauntlet away from Thanos). But, what use is this Chris going to be when your upstairs plumbing leaks through the kitchen floor, or your water heater explodes? None. That clever little racoon character may be of some help, but we’re told he’s “fictional.” Which is why the guys at G&C Plumbing and Heating are saying, move over Chris Pratt…

Enter, Chris Goguen!

Chris is a bit like the other Chris in that he’s the guy you look to when you need a job done. That’s why Greg and Brandon from G&C brought him onto the team. “He fits really well because you can tell he just won’t accept anything less than perfection,” said Grand Master Plumber, Greg.

Chris Goguen had a passion to become a plumber when he was back in high school. “Now it has become a reality with G&C,” said Goguen. He was drawn to working with Greg and Brandon because of the team’s professionalism toward their employees, customers, and training methods. He also likes that the father and son duo manage to maintain a positive sense of humor. “That really drew my attention.”

So, we asked Chris Goguen to make a plumbing comparison to an action movie stunt – something similar to what Chris Pratt might have to endure on the movie set of the Avengers. The new G&C team member was a good sport: “Going up into a hot attic with the messy loose insulation to move a vent pipe to a different location.”

Well played Chris Goguen.

Facts About Your New G&C Star Lord

  1. If stranded on an island, he couldn’t live without his Sawzall.
  2. He is actually full of joy when friends or family ask him to come over to fix their plumbing.
  3. His go-to plumbing joke: “We are number one in a number two business.”
  4. He brings even more muscle and smiles to the G&C team. “I am ready to learn and do all of the heavy lifting,” said Goguen.

Welcome to the team!

bask in snow

Heater’s Still Standing

We’ve spent the better part of this spring talking about your heating system miraculously making it through the wicked winter of 2017. Some of you realize this past winter was certainly your heater’s last stand, making now the best time to hook yourself up with a new unit. But, what about the rest of you with heating systems that still have a few good winters left in em? What about the heaters that are still standing strong? Is there anything you can do to make a decent system more efficient? The guys at G&C Plumbing and Heating have just the news for you!

Boiler Add-Ons

If you heat your home using a hot water boiler, there is an easy way to improve the efficiency of your system and save money without having to replace the boiler itself. All you need is a boiler outdoor reset control.

A what?

A boiler outdoor reset control can be installed on an existing boiler to automatically adjust the temperature of the water heated by the boiler based on the outdoor temperature. “With boiler water temperatures adjustable, you can improve the comfort of your home, the lifespan of your heating equipment, reduce standby energy loss, and lower your heating bills by an average of 10 percent,” said Grand Master Plumber Greg Sheck from G&C. All you have to do is call the guys at G&C to install it.

Boilers are traditionally designed to heat water to peak temperatures, anywhere from 160-200 ºF. This temperature range typically keeps your home comfortable even the coldest days of the year in New England. “In the spring and fall, and during some of the wacky winter days when we get in the 50’s, you don’t need peak temperatures from your boiler even though you still need heat to keep your house comfortable,” said Sheck. “Without a boiler outdoor reset control, your boiler doesn’t adjust according to the mild or wild temperatures, it heats water to peak whether you need it or not.” At peak temps, your using energy you don’t need, which is like throwing money out the window.

More Mass Save Benefits

To help more people realize the benefits of outdoor reset controls, the Sponsors of Mass Save® are offering rebates of up to $225 on controls for natural gas boilers and up to $100 on controls for oil and propane boilers. That’s free money from Mass Save that you just can’t pass up, especially if you know your boiler is good for a few more winters! For more information about Mass Save rebates, click here or call the guys at G&C and they will happily walk you through it.

Piggy Bank

Heater’s Last Stand – Part 2

Last time we talked about your heating system miraculously making it through the wicked winter of 2017. We all agreed it was your heater’s last stand, and that now is the perfect time to replace that sucker even though you don’t want to talk or even think about turning on the heat. The guys at G&C Plumbing and Heating get it, it’s summer and warm, but let’s find the best way to outfit your home with a new system while this warmth lasts.

Mass Save

Get this, when you replace inefficient and old (AKA: barely hanging on, it’s a miracle we didn’t freeze to death in February) heating equipment, you may be eligible for rebates of up to $3,250 through the Mass Save Program.

“Mass Save is a collaborative of gas and electric utilities, and service providers that give people a hand in making energy efficient upgrades by providing a range of services, rebates, incentives, trainings, and information,” said Greg Sheck, the Grand Master Plumber and heating system extraordinaire from G&C.

This means Mass Save can help you pay for your new heating system! Who doesn’t like free money?

According to Mass Save, “Massachusetts has earned top ranking as the #1 state in the nation for energy efficiency according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).” (We copied that from their website, along with the following lists:)

How to Participate

  • To see if you’re eligible for an early heating or cooling equipment replacement rebate, contact us at 866-527-SAVE (7283) to schedule your no-cost Mass Save Home Energy Assessment or Site Visit prior to removing your old equipment and installing your new efficient equipment.
    • If you are only interested in the early central A/C or central heat pump rebate, you may contact an Airflow and Charge Check (AC Check) Trained Contractor to verify eligibility.
    • Please note if you are interested in using the HEAT Loan to finance the new equipment, you must have a Home Energy Assessment.
  • If your equipment is eligible for the early replacement rebate, you will receive the rebate form from your Energy Specialist or AC Check Trained Contractor. The new equipment must meet or exceed the efficiency requirements listed above.
  • Rebates and other required documentation can be submitted online or by mail.
    Please allow six to eight weeks for rebate payment after our receipt and verification of all paperwork and/or site inspection.

Rebate Eligibility Requirements

Natural Gas, Oil and Propane Heating Systems:

  • Fuel switching/conversion (i.e. oil to gas) is NOT eligible for this offer.
  • Distribution change/conversion (i.e. forced hot air to forced hot water) is NOT eligible for this offer.
  • Must be a Massachusetts residential natural gas or electric customer of Berkshire Gas, Blackstone Gas, Cape Light Compact JPE, Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, Eversource, Liberty Utilities, National Grid or Unitil.
  • Municipal Electric customers must heat with natural gas provided by a participating Gas Utility.
  • Customer must complete a Mass Save Home Energy Assessment or Site Visit prior to replacing their heating equipment. The existing equipment must be functional and fueled by natural gas, propane, or oil. A boiler must be at least 30 years old, while a furnace must be at least 12 years old.
  • Qualifying equipment must be installed and completed Rebate Form and other required documentation must be submitted by the installation and submission deadlines.
  • Equipment must be installed within a home with an active residential account.
  • Customers receiving the Early Heating Equipment Replacement Rebates are NOT eligible for any other Mass Save or GasNetworks heating and cooling equipment rebates on installed equipment; however, customers are eligible to apply for 0% financing through the Mass Save HEAT Loan Program.
  • Rebate is only valid for installations between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2018. Rebate application must be submitted by January 31, 2019.
  • Equipment installation may be subject to a verification inspection.

Well, That Was A Lot of Bullet Points

The bottom line is Greg and Brandon from G&C Plumbing and Heating are here to help get your new heating system installed for the best price possible. Weather it’s financing options with G&C and/or helping your get the maximum on Mass Save rebates, give the guys a call and they’ll make sure your old heater’s last stand is a pleasant memory.

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Heater’s Last Stand

Raise your hand if when you turned off the heat last month you were amazed your system lasted through winter because you’re pretty sure it’d been circling the drain since Thanksgiving.

Hands down.

Greg and Brandon Sheck from G&C Plumbing and Heating know you don’t want to talk about heat after the winter we just survived, but now is actually the best time of the year to make some critical decisions about your heating system. “Because you don’t need it right now,” said Grand Master Plumber Greg Sheck. So, whether you’re certain of your system’s impending death or just curious, Greg and Brandon want you to do them a favor…

Go over to your heating system, right now, and run a quick test to make sure it’s in proper working order. “Don’t worry, running a test on your heater isn’t technically the same as turning it on,” said Greg for those still suffering from the psychological effects of March.

  • Move the thermostat switch to the “heat/on” position and turn it up at least 10 degrees higher than the actual room temperature.
  • Listen carefully. Within a few minutes, you should hear your heating equipment jump into action.
  • If the equipment doesn’t start up, press the reset button on your burner’s relay. Press it just once.
  • If your system still doesn’t start, consider these points:
    • Are the emergency switches on? (There may be two: one at the stairs and one at the unit)
    • Did the fuse or circuit breaker for your equipment trip?

If the system kicks on, good! But, Greg wants you to consider a few things while it’s humming:

  • How many times in the past three years have you had the system serviced? Check out your service history to review the dollars spent. “If the numbers are creeping up there, you might want to invest in a new high-efficiency system instead of return-repair visits,” said Greg.
  • Are there any abnormal smells or funky noises? A bump or two from the basement is to be expected, but “if you hear excessive humming, clunking, banging, or smell strange odors, that’s not good and even if you don’t replace the system, it certainly needs a check-up.”
  • Is the air dry or dusty? Noticeable amounts of dust or drastic changes in air humidity can be symptoms of a declining heating system.

“We don’t want folks to sit back, enjoy their spring and summer and then find themselves in October with a faulty system,” said Brandon Sheck. “That is actually the worst time to make critical decisions about your heating system because that’s when you need it.”

G&C is pleased to offer financing options for pro-active customers this spring. “We have a 12-month financing option with 0 percent interest if you pay it off in said months, or longer terms like 60 to 84-month options for about six to nine percent interest,” said Brandon who is glad this gives customers peace of mind about coming up with money upfront for something they don’t even want to talk about when the weather is nice.

If you’re suspicious that your heater may have made its last stand over the winter, call the guys at G&C Pluming and Heating to get some honest advice and suggestions about what you should do right now.  In addition to financing options, Greg can tell you about some helpful MASS Save rebates that will also help.

We’ll tell you all the details next time!

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Plumbers Without Cracks

To follow-up on G&C Plumbing and Heating’s THIRD Angie’s Super Service Award, we figured we’d fill you in on how this A + customer service providing and major award-winning team does business!

Father and Son

It’s incredibly refreshing to know that when Greg and Brandon Sheck come into your home they are acting not only as excellent customer service providers, they are also acting as a father and son team – there is a level of respect and care in this working combination that elevates the service they provide to something pretty cool.

“My dad taught me from a young age to be respectful. That’s why we both think it’s important to wear booties on our shoes in our customer’s home, place mats down for our tools to protect our customer’s floors, and pick up after ourselves,” said Brandon who probably takes his shoes off at home too.

“One thing we hear often is how we’re the only plumbing company to answer the phone or to return a phone call. Not just within a day or so, but to return the phone call at all,” said Greg who is super happy is wife Christine is great with customers on the phone.

Over the years, the father and son team has added crew members to their A+ business. Even though the “new” guys may not be related, Greg and Brandon treat them like family and expect them to treat customers in the same fashion G&C has always run the family business.

  • They believe in treating people how they would like to be treated.
  • They get a lot of work from word of mouth and strive to keep those words positive.
  • They are polite and personable with customers and even their pets.
  • They feel it’s a lot easier to be nice to people than to be mean to them.

Greg’s Story

Greg worked for the same plumbing company for 14 years and was fairly happy until his boss changed his business model in an attempt to make a quick buck and “things went downhill real fast,” said Greg.

In 2005, G&C Plumbing and Heating was born.

As a Master Plumber of his own company, Greg worked for well-known builders and general contractors in the Franklin, MA area until the housing crash of 2009, when “five general contractors filed for bankruptcy all at the same time -that was tough,” said Greg.

Always an optimist, Greg used the crash as an opportunity to change the G&C business model and started working exclusively for homeowners doing residential service and repair work. “Turns out it was the right move, business has never better.”

Brandon’s Story

Brandon participated in wrestling year-round and it taught him a little something about having a strong work ethic. He took his energy to Westfield State where he was regularly on the Dean’s List and eventually graduated with a 3.3 GPA in Business and Marketing.

“During summers and school vacations, I would do plumbing with my dad to earn spending money for the next semester,” said Brandon. But, after a few years of working with his dad, he started to realize he was incredibly talented at the plumbing practice. He enjoyed figuring out the best way to solve plumbing problems and became serious about learning the trade and family business.

Although their personal and professional approach to business has blessed the guys at G&C with a dedicated client base, Brandon has applied his business and marketing education to help bring G&C Plumbing and Heating’s marketing strategies into the now. His efforts have made finding G&C Plumbing and Heating much easier by focusing on their website, business partnerships, and social media – He was the guy who came up with the idea of writing this absolutely amazing, potentially award winning, blog!

And that’s the story

A father and son team working hard to serve their community. They know your name, and you recognize the G&C Truck as it travels back and forth across southern Mass. It’s a great story when you think of it: A successful local business that helps friends and neighbors.