Unfreezing The Drains In The Winter

As we are deep into the winter season, it is important to understand that your household drains are susceptible to freezing and thus making it difficult to unclog them while using traditional drain cleaning methods. You might be asking, which drains are at risk of freezing? The answer to this question would be drains that are more exposed to the elements, or ones that are along the outside walls of exposed basement walls. A few examples of these drains would be downspout discharge drains, shallow sewer lines, and shallow drains.

How To Prevent Freezing Drains

Now, it is important to keep in mind that there is no guarantee that the freezing temperatures will not affect your drains. However, the following solutions can help to prevent a drain block:

  1. First, you should cover your pipes with insulation sleeves
  2. Insulate any unfinished basements or other areas where the pipes and drains are exposed to colder temperatures
  3. Turn up the heat in any area where your pipes and drains are exposed
  4. Be sure to carefully pour hot water down any used household drains that are used infrequently
  5. Make sure you remove any debris from the outdoor drains and keep them clear throughout the winter months.

What Happens If Your Drain Becomes Frozen

When it comes to clearing frozen drains and pipes, here are a few DIY approaches you might want to consider. First, if it is an outdoor drain, using hot saltwater or just hot water along with a deicing agent can help to clear a line, however, be prepared for some water to back up towards you until you have cleared the block. For indoor pipes, they may respond by exposing them to the heat from a hair dryer. You will want to be cautious not to expose the pipes to heat for too long as it can cause more damage. Now, while using the DIY approach might work, you might want to contact a drain cleaning professional like All County Sewer & Drain for safety reasons. All County Sewer & Drain uses their drain cleaning cameras to get deep into the drain and see exactly where an issue is. Doing so allows them to know exactly where they need to work and save you time and money.

So, if you happen to notice that your drain is freezing up or it already has become frozen and you are in need of professional assistance, please do not hesitate to reach out to All County Sewer & Drain today at (800) 834-3102!

Drain Maintenance Tasks To Prepare For Winter

Winter has arrived, but it is never too late to prepare your home’s plumbing system for the cold winter months that are here. Keep in mind that you will want to get a lot of this work done before you reach the peak of the season. Your drain is one of the highest maintenance parts within your house’s plumbing as it always requires cleaning, draining, and/or fixing. So, with all that said, let’s take a look at a few tasks that will help keep your drain in tip-top shape during the winter season.

Unclog The Drains In The House

One of the first things you will want to do is to go around to every drain in the house and make sure that none of them are clogged. Once you have checked each drain, you should look to remove any hair or dirt currently in there at the moment. The reason for this is because, once the winter really kicks in, they will have a greater chance of becoming clogged as well. Now, you might not get everything, but you should try to remove what you can so that you won’t have to deal with it during the thick of the winter. Also, if you do find any clogged drains, do not wait when it comes to fixing them as the longer you wait, the worse it will be.

Clean Your Drains

Another task to implement is to go around to all the drains and clean them to prevent them from becoming clogged during the winter. You can use baking soda and vinegar to effectively clear your drains. Doing so once a month will significantly reduce the frequency of clogs.

Make Sure The Sinks And Showers Drain Properly

It will always be a smart idea to ensure that all of your showers, sinks, and even toilets are draining properly. Keep in mind that just because a drain is cleaned or unclogged, that does not mean that it drains properly. What some people may not be aware of is that many drainage issues come from the pipes themselves and not the drain. So, if you start to notice that water is building up and not draining properly, even after you’ve cleaned it out, be sure to contact a local professional.

Perform Hot Water Flushing

If you are someone who does not have time to clean your drains with some kind of cleaner, or maybe you already have and want to make sure that they are in working condition, you can simply pour boiling hot water over every drain. This should be repeated weekly.

Use Cold Water

Finally, you should look to use cold water in the kitchen sink as it will keep oils and grease in a solid state allowing the garbage disposal to break it up.

These are a few tasks that you will want to implement to ensure that your drain is in working condition for the winter season. If you have any further questions or would like professional assistance, reach out to All County Sewer & Drain at (800) 834-3102!

Maintaining The Drainage in a Hospital Building

When it comes to modern hospitals, they are amongst some of the most complicated buildings in the world and this is because they specifically designed to be used for various kinds of patients, in different care settings all while using a plethora of treatments and equipment. So, with that in mind, their drainage systems are by nature also very complex. Health facility managers are also well aware of what a headache it can be when these systems break down. For example, a sewage backup occurring behind a blockage and flooding a hospital ward, while not uncommon, can mean having to move patients to other busy wards in order to clean that area. All County Sewer & Drain is well equipped to handle the maintenance of a hospital’s drainage system and provides the following tips to ensure your system remains in top shape.

 

Know Your Drainage System

Most hospital buildings have been developed as necessary over the years and the mapping of the drainage systems sometimes does not keep up with these changes due to a myriad of reasons such as inaccurate or incomplete plans, or even misconnections in the hospital pipework. This can make identifying the source of a drainage problem much more difficult and thus responding to those problems can become close to impossible. So, the best way to mitigate these issues is to map the entire drainage system so that you can identify the connections, water flows, system capacities, and asset condition.

 

With All County’s sewer camera system, they can provide high-quality video footage inside the pipes to give a clear view of the system allowing you to better map things out. This is the first step to having a quality maintenance strategy as you can easily identify which parts need to be fixed immediately and which can be saved for a later time.

 

Effective Maintenance

Performing regular preventative maintenance will be essential due to the unique demands placed on drainage systems. You will find that in older hospitals, many of the downpipes are cast iron reducing their capacity due to oxidization. Common hospital items can also accelerate this process like caustic chemicals, sanitation gels and detergents can also build up within the pipes. In addition to what goes on inside the building, outside blockage issues can be a burden to patient services. For example, tree root infestation and drain collapses are common causes of sewer blockages. All County Sewer & Drain has many different techniques to rectify these issues if necessary.

 

Control What Goes Down The Drains

Typically, whatever a patient or a healthcare worker would do at home, they are likely to do in a hospital. Therefore, it is not uncommon for many sanitary products and wet wipes to be disposed of wrongly down hospital toilets on a regular basis. Along with this, in hospital canteens and kitchens, you will notice a lot of fats and oils finding their way down the drains in residual amounts of through irresponsible disposal. For this reason, it is imperative to be in control of what is being put in the drains. So, be sure to train the staff and be on high alert when it comes to patients and visitors.

 

These are just a few common tips that can help maintain an effective drainage system within a hospital building. As mentioned, All County Sewer & Drain is well equipped to handle these kinds of drainage systems, especially with their sewer camera system that will allow them to get deep into the pipes and determine root causes of whatever drainage issue your building might be facing. For more information, feel free to call All County Sewer & Drain at 1 (800) 834-3102!

Tips To Keep Restaurant Drains Fresh

For restaurant owners, there are a host of things that one must keep track of. One of the most important things to think about is proper drain care. At All County Sewer and Drain, we have all the necessary tools and experience to help keep restaurant drains in top shape. So, let’s take a look at some tips that can help you take care of your drains and avoid health hazards in the process. 

 

Keep Grease Traps Clean

One of the best ways to keep your drains in top shape is to make sure the grease traps are clean. These are designed to stop certain materials from getting into your plumbing system which would result in clogging. The primary culprits include oils and fats which can cause many plumbing issues if they manage to get past your grease traps. So, it will be imperative to know how often your grease traps need to be pumped and when the grease trap line needs to be cleaned. Both of these measures will depend on how much grease you dispose of, so be sure to find an interval that works best for you.

 

Use Natural Solutions

Many times, even with minor clogs, people are quick to go for a chemical drain cleaner. Now, while these can be effective, the harsh ingredients and compounds used to break down clogs can also cause other types of problems that can be quite expensive to fix. An alternative solution that is more natural would be to use a mixture of baking soda and vinegar which work together to take on grime and grease. Another natural solution to look into is hot water and bleach which helps to clear funky smells. These natural solutions are unlikely to damage your pipes which will be beneficial for you in the long run.

 

Install A Drain Cover

Drain covers or drain grates help to keep out any large debris, ensuring that your pipes and grease traps stay cleaner. On the bright side, these do not cost too much to install and would end up paying for itself over time as they would help you avoid any costly plumbing problems due to its assistance.

 

Eliminate Any Food Scraps

Even the smallest food scraps can cause some issues if they make their way down the drain. So, you will want to ensure that employees clean off plates thoroughly into the trash can. This will help you have some peace of mind that you won’t have to deal with any waste causing clogs or drain issues. The added time spent on cleaning up will certainly save you a bigger headache down the line. 

 

These are just a few tips that restaurant owners can use for preventative maintenance on their drains. For further information or assistance, be sure to call the professionals at All County Sewer and Drain and we would be happy to take a look at the problem for you and get you and your restaurant back on the right track. Give us a call at 1 (800) 834-3102!

Preventative Maintenance Tips for Excess Usage

This year we were all taken for a ride with the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the quarantine, we were all left to stay home for an extended period of time. Now, that businesses and even schools are beginning to open back up, we can expect that the sewer systems will be used much more than they had been previously. With that being said, it is important to perform preventative maintenance, not just to administer best practices, but also to ensure the safety of everyone who uses it. As we are not out of the woods yet as it pertains to COVID-19, safety should always be your number one priority. So, by having a properly functioning sewer system, that is clean, it will protect any patrons or students in the building. Therefore, let’s take a look at some preventative maintenance tips for excessive usage of your sewer system.

 

Clean Out Slow And Clogged Drains

With excess usage, you may come to experience water that is slow to empty in the drains which might indicate a clog. One chemical-free and natural remedy of vinegar and hot water poured down the drain can flush it out and unplug the debris. You will want to complete this technique every few months in order to keep the drains flowing at an optimal condition. You can also use common household drain cleaners. Now, if you find that this issue continues to occur, then you will want to reach out to your local professional for assistance. All County Sewer and Drain use their sewer cameras to get deep to the root of the problem which would be very useful in these kinds of situations.

 

Investigate Bare Pipes and Appliances For Leaks

There will be situations where a leak can be traced back to a broken or exposed pipe that was connected to a water heater, garbage disposal, or other appliance. If you follow the manufacture guidelines for maintaining the appliances, you can help to keep thins in check. However, it is also a good practice to learn to look for signs of water leakage like stains on the walls or ceilings. Another telltale sign is water pooling around the floor and by being aware of these signs, you can prevent a major issue before it becomes one. Plus, if you want to very proactive, you should look to schedule periodic leak detection services from your local professional.

 

Check The Sewer System Lines

If you have a building that runs on a sewer system, then you need to understand how the lines run and check regularly for tree roots that may sprout and cause havoc with the pipes. This is another prime opportunity to take advantage of All County Sewer and Drain’s sewer camera inspections. They can use their technology to snake through the sewer lines and check for any problems and nip them in the bud before they become costly.

 

Test The Water Pressure

Another great measure to take is to check the water pressure frequently as it will help regulate what comes out of the faucets. You can use a gauge to test the water pressure and ensure that it working at optimal levels. You can also include a pressure regulator that will keep the water pressure at the preferred level.

 

As always, safety is the number one concern, especially during these times. It is important that you do what you can to control the aspects that are within your control. For any further questions or assistance as it pertains to preventative maintenance, please feel free to call All County Sewer and Drain at 1 (800) 834-3102!