Tag Archives: toilet

toilet bowl

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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Is It Time to Kick Your Toilet to the Curb?

If your toilet is giving you grief, it might be time to replace it. Sometimes an easy fix can spare you the time and money of installing a new one. However, there are a few problems that, unfortunately, aren’t worth the effort to fix. Here’s a quick list from the guys at G&C Plumbing and Heating to know when it’s time to say goodbye to your old John:

He’s Falling Apart

First it’s the handle, then the flapper, and then the fill valve. Sure, these repairs are relatively simple individually, but if you add them all up and find yourself doing one after another, you’re putting yourself into a position to end up spending more time and money on the fixes than if you were to just replace the whole thing.

“My rule of thumb, if you’re planning to replace your toilet in the next few years, then save the money and time and replace the toilet after you’ve tried just one basic repair,” said Grand Master Plumber, Greg Sheck from G&C Plumbing and Heating.

Clogs (and not the comfy shoe kind)

Many toilets tend to clog as they age, especially some of the first low flush models. Sometimes they simply require more than one flush and sometimes they require a plunger. “No one likes to plunge their toilet and if you’re doing it more than a couple times a month, it’s time to replace,” said Sheck. “Low flush toilets have come a long way and the new line of water savers work much better than anything we’ve ever seen.”

Porcelain Cracks

If you spot a hair line crack in the tank or bowl of your toilet, it’s time to kick it to the curb! “Even small cracks can turn into a flood at the worst possible time or can be the source of an active leak,” said Sheck who suggests inspecting toilets for cracks whenever you clean them. An unnoticed leak can lead to a ruined floor, or worse, over time.

Save the World and Some Cash

Saving water may be reason enough to replace a toilet. You can save quite a bit on your water bill every year with a low flush toilet. “A water saving toilet uses less than two gallons of water per flush which is considerably less than the old three to five gallon flush toilets,” said Sheck. Not only are you helping the environment with a new toilet by saving water, you are helping yourself save money. Just promise us you won’t try to use your old toilet as a planter in the back yard!

Should John Stay or Should He Go?

So, what’s the verdict – is your John staying or going? If he’s going, you’re in luck because next time on Plumbers Without Cracks, we’ll cover how to install a new toilet. If you’re still not sure, or have no desire to install a toilet (like most normal people) feel free to call Greg or Brandon at G&C Plumbing and Heating and they can come over and help you out with your dear ole John.

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Leaky Toilet?

Expert Tips from the Trenches to Stop the Plumbing Emergencies Before it Happens.

Greg and Brandon have acted as first responders to a few home emergencies in their time. Several feet of clogged pipe from food build up and flooded basements from a broken toilet, plumbing isn’t always pretty, but the guys at G&C try their best to keep it from ruining your weekend, holiday, or return from vacation. The father and son team from Franklin, MA suggest the following to avoid serious plumbing problems before they start.

Dear John, it’s not you, it’s me.

Although it is rare to have your porcelain throne spontaneously explode, it can happen. More likely, a leaky toilet is the result of the working parts inside the toilet failing. When this is the case, slowly but surely, your toilet can waste enough water to fill an Olympic sized pool.

“If you suspect a leak, you or your eight year old can run a fun and easy test by pouring a bit of food coloring into the toilet’s tank,” says Greg, a plumber with over 20 years of experience. “If you see coloring in the bowl the next day, you need to replace the flush valve.” A bit of preventative maintenance on your favorite lounge chair can go a long way.

Don’t Burn Your Pipes or Your Plumbers

Bathroom and kitchen sinks can quickly get clogged with hair, soap residue, and fats. This is a messy problem that can become disastrous if not attended. In the bathroom you can use a wet/dry vacuum to remove small masses, and in the kitchen flush the drain with a bucket full of boiling water to help oil dissolve. However, please never pour flesh eating products like Drano in your sink.

“I can’t tell you how many times I have been chemically burned after opening a pipe to clear a problematic drain,” said Brandon Sheck. These over the counter products run along the bottom of a pipe and burnout a small path along the way, but they don’t actually clean out the problem and often get trapped themselves creating a little corrosive chemical pool that can damage your pipes and the hands that fix them.

The simplest way to keep drains running clean is to not put clogging material down there. But, it’s difficult to talk your wife or daughter into brushing their long hair in the garage instead of in the bathroom. And, it’s even more difficult to ask your Italian mother or grandmother to stop cooking with olive oil. If you do experience a slowing of your drain, just remember – don’t burn your plumbers! G&C recommends using BIO-Clean. This product is not available in stores and is a blend of bacteria and enzymes. The bacteria are natural, not genetically-engineered. The enzyme concentration is the most powerful on the market and is used by many amazing plumbers such as G&C.

Stay tuned next week for more pre-emptive tips from G&C!