Rusty, Slimy or Smelly Water? You Need Iron Water Filtration

Rusty, Slimy or Smelly Water? You Need Iron Water Filtration

Asheville Water Filtration Blues

Got rusty, slimy or smelly water? If so, iron may be the culprit, and you will need iron water filtration. Iron in water is a very common problem for a lot of people around the country, and especially here in the Asheville and Hendersonville areas.

Iron left untreated will seriously damage plumbing components and equipment by accumulating inside pipes and fixtures. Deposits can clog dishwashers, washing machines, water heaters, sprinklers, wells, water pumps and other appliances, leading to very expensive repairs. Iron leaves unsightly stains on laundry, dishes, sinks and tubs, and can even stain light colored hair! The orange, yellow or brown stains are difficult, if not impossible, to remove. It causes your water to taste and smell metallic, which carries into coffee, tea and other drinks made with it. Aside from bad taste, iron in water adds a displeasing coloration to drinks and food. Veggies cooked in well water containing iron turn unappetizingly dark and absorb the taste of the water.

Three different types of iron are commonly found in well water. They are:

Iron bacteria is usually noticeable because it leaves slime in places like toilets, or in water softeners or water filters. It does not have a “rotten egg” smell, but it does create an environment where sulfur bacteria can grow and produce hydrogen sulfide, which does.

Ferrous iron is often called “clear water iron” because it looks clear when the tap is turned on, and it remains clear as long as the water it is in is not exposed to oxygen. Once exposed to air, it starts to turn orange. If you’ve ever filled a tub and had the water change color, you’ve seen ferrous iron turn into ferric iron.

Ferric iron is known as “red water iron”. In well water, ferric iron is essentially clear water iron that has been exposed to oxygen in the air. This is the rusty-colored water which causes stains. Ferric iron can be present directly out of a well or in tap water that has oxidized.

A lot of people here in Western NC use water softeners as a way of dealing with iron. Unfortunately, while softeners are a cheaper means of iron water filtration, they are not the right solution. It is true that a water softener can remove ferrous bicarbonate for a time, but it is not capable of dealing with the other forms.

Field test kits are not capable of detecting the different forms if iron, so if you do have iron in your water, there is no way to make sure that you only have the one type that a softener can handle. Well pump impellers add air to the water when pumping, which means that as water travels from well to pressure tank and then to the softener, any clear water iron that is present oxidizes and turns into red water iron, which cannot be removed by the water softener. Even if you only have clear water iron at the wellhead, you will have red water iron in your tap. It will eventually foul the resin bed, causing the water softener to stop working properly.

You need an iron reactor system to deal with iron properly. I understand why people choose to hire plumbers who offer water softeners as a solution for iron water filtration, because it is cheaper in the short term. But I also know that after a couple of years they regret their decision. In the end they have to install a proper iron water filtration system after the ‘water softener solution’ ultimately fails.

If you have rusty, slimy, smelly water, or see stains on your fixtures, get your water professionally tested by a plumber who offers a comprehensive water test and getting the proper water filtration installed right the first time.

Jacob Goodman is the owner of Goodman Plumbing Asheville NC. He has been plumbing for over20 years. Goodman Plumbing offers a full-range laboratory water testing for wells, springs, or municipal water, and holds a platinum certification from CSI water filtration systems. You can read more about Asheville water filtration at www.goodmanforthejob.com/water-filtration-asheville, or give us a call today! 828-774-7076

5+ Tips to a Clog-Free Sink and Disposal Asheville

5+ Tips to a Clog-Free Sink and Disposal Asheville

Helpful hints to keep your kitchen drain and disposal Asheville working right

As your local Asheville plumber, we received a number of calls over the holidays because of clogged drains. We not only want to help you with plumbing emergencies, we want to help you avoid them altogether!

1. The Sink Is Not a Trash Can

It’s called a garbage disposal, but it’s not for garbage really. As much as you can, throw leftover food scraps in the compost bucket or trash can. When you use your disposal Asheville friends, don’t overload it, but put scraps in a little at a time!

2. It’s Not All Good

Unless you have a super heavy duty commercial garbage disposal, things like bones, fruit pits, poultry skin, potato peels, celery stalks, corn husks, artichokes, or banana peels will tie it up in knots. Don’t risk it.

3. Grease Is The Word

Don’t ever pour fat, grease, or cooking oil down the drain, and wipe out greasy pans with a paper towel before washing them.

4. Keep That COLD Water On

Always run cold water (not hot!) when you use your disposal, and let it keep running for a few seconds after you turn it off to thoroughly flush everything down. (Hot water can liquefy the ground up waste, causing it to stick to the sides of the disposal, while cold water helps solidify it.)

5. The Dishwasher Connection

If your kitchen sink or disposal seems to be having trouble, don’t run the dishwasher until it is cleared. Dishwashers often empty into the garbage disposal, so running it can make your problem bigger.

Bonus Plumbing Tip:

If your kitchen needs a little freshening up, you can always grind up a citrus peel or two in your disposal to make things smell better. And, of course, if you need a reliable and honest local plumber, please give Goodman Plumbing a call at 828-774-7076, we’d love to help you with all your plumbing needs or problems with your disposal Asheville.

citrus for disposal asheville

Helpful Spring Plumbing Tips Asheville

Helpful Spring Plumbing Tips Asheville

Seasonal Plumbing Maintenance Tips for Your Asheville Area Home

Spring is in the air! It’s time for flowers and plumbing maintenance in Asheville! Here are 10 spring plumbing tips to get your house ready.

1. Dewinterize those pipes

Many people live in the Appalachian mountains of Asheville and Hendersonville for only part of the year. During the cold winter months, they leave for warmer climates. Winterizing is the process of removing water from pipes so that they won’t freeze while they are not being used. Now that Spring is here, they need to be de-winterized! Here’s how to do that. First, make sure all water supply lines are connected, and if not, reconnect them. Then, turn off the shut-off valves (if there are any). That will allow you to turn plumbing fixtures on individually and check for leaks. Next, turn on the water, go to each fixture, and let it run for a few minutes. Finally, flush the toilets a few times, and look for any water on the floor. Be diligent in checking for leaks since they don’t always appear right away. Always take your time and double check everything!

2. Take note of low water pressure

Low water pressure can be caused by many different things, but often it is a sign of something going wrong in your plumbing system. It could be a problem with your water heater or pressure reducing valve, you might need to change the media in your water filters, have a hidden leak, have mineral deposits in your plumbing, or have a problem with your well pressure pump. If you notice low water pressure, be sure to read on! These spring plumbing tips might help you find the culprit.

3. Check your hose bibb (spigot)

Asheville Plumbing Pipe Repair

A broken hose bibb we removed and replaced for a customer.

Obviously, not a lot of outdoor watering goes on in Asheville in the winter. But as soon as spring rolls around it is the perfect time to check your hose bibb (spigot). Inspect the water line that goes to it to make sure it has not been damaged by freezing temperatures. If an outdoor faucet drips, has low water pressure, or you notice water inside your basement, crawlspace or house when the hose is turned on for the first time in the spring, you may have a frozen pipe that cracked and needs to be replaced. This often happens if a garden hose or other attachment was left connected during a freeze. We like to install Woodford FrostProof Hose Bibbs, but even frost-proof can’t withstand leaving a hose connected.

4. Check for other leaks

Leaks can cause serious damage before you even realize they are there. Check for water under your refrigerator, damp spots or stains on your walls or ceilings, and musty smells. Ice maker lines, dishwasher lines, washing machine hoses, exposed pipes under sinks and in basements are some places to check for bulges in the line or water on the floor. If you have city water, something you can check is the leak indicator on the meter. It is a small red triangle that moves when water is flowing. If yours doesn’t have one, you can take a reading from your water meter before bedtime. Then the next morning (making sure no one used any water during the night) check it again. If the number has changed you know you have a leak that needs to be repaired.

5. Check your water heater

Set the temperature gauge on your water heater to 120℉ to save energy and prevent burns. Inspect the area around your water heater and make sure there is nothing flammable nearby. If your water heater is old, look at the serial number. The first four digits are often the month and year that your water heater was made. Anything 15 years or older should probably be replaced. Newer water heaters save money because they are much more energy efficient. And chances are, since it’s that old, it’s going to give out pretty soon (probably at the most inconvenient time!)

If you have a tank-type standard water heater, plan to do a quick flush to remove the sediment and corrosion that can build up on the bottom of your tank. Any crud inside can reduce the life expectancy of your water heater and reduce its efficiency. Just attach a garden hose to the tank spigot with the other end draining somewhere outside and turn it on until it runs clear steadily. If nothing comes out, you know you have a problem!

If you have a tankless water heater, spring is the perfect time to do your yearly descaling and cleaning of the combustion chamber, which we can help with.

6.Toilet repair asheville Check your toilets

Check for leaks from the tank into the bowl by putting food coloring into the tank. If you see colored water in the bowl within 30 minutes, you have a sneaky leak that could be costing you! While you’re looking, check the bowl for cracks or leaks there too.

Make sure your toilets are flushing the way they should. If you have to jiggle the handle or hold it down, that’s a sign that the inner parts of your toilet need to be rebuilt. Fortunately it is not a very expensive fix and can end up saving you money on your water bill in the long run.

7. Check your filters

Check and change the cartridges or media in your sediment filters, fridge water filters, or water softeners. Here are some simple steps to do it: First, shut off your water. Then, unscrew the outer housing and remove and throw away the old filter cartridge. (You might want to have a bucket underneath first!) Next, remove and lubricate the O-ring with clean plumber’s faucet grease and put it back in place. Fit new filter cartridge over the centering knob in the bottom of the housing. Then, screw the filter housing onto cap and hand-tighten. Finally, turn your water supply back on. Now your water filtration system can do its job properly!

 8. Check your shower heads

If you see white mineral deposits around the water holes in your shower head, you have hard water and you might consider installing a water softener. Calcium build-up not only clogs shower heads, but does the same thing to all your plumbing fixtures! You can clean off your shower head by scrubbing it with white vinegar and clearing the holes with a toothpick or wire, allowing it to flow freely again. Some people suggest soaking your entire shower head in vinegar over night. That works, and is less labor, but a vinegar soak might damage the finish on your showerhead, so we don’t recommend trying it unless you feel sure it won’t.

9. Check your sump pump (if you have one)

Spring rains are coming! Prime your sump pump to make sure it is ready for some hard work. If you have not checked your sump pump recently, test it by pouring a few gallons of water into the pit. The pump should turn on in a few seconds, drain the water, then turn off automatically. If it does not, call your local Asheville plumber and have us check your sump pump before it completely burns out and leaves you at risk for flooding.

10. Check your drains

Pour a gallon or so of water into any drains (sinks, tubs, floor drains) that have not been used recently. This fills their P- traps and prevents sewage odors from entering your living space. Snake slow floor drains to make sure that they will drain quickly in case of a springtime flood.

Hopefully these spring plumbing tips have been useful to you. If you would like help with any of these plumbing maintenance items, or if you discovered a plumbing repair that needs to be done, please call us at Goodman Plumbing Asheville, we’ll be right over. 828-774-7076When you need a professional, licensed and courteous Asheville Plumber? — You Need a Good Man for the Job!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moving? Here Is Your Asheville Plumbing Checklist!

Moving? Here Is Your Asheville Plumbing Checklist!

Asheville Plumbing Checklist

When you are moving, lists can be invaluable, so we put together this simple plumbing checklist for you.

The housing market in the Asheville area is booming and has been for several years, and the season for real estate is back in full swing! As Asheville plumbers, we often get calls from customers who are either buying, selling, or just purchased a new home. If you are buying or selling, you need to know what to look for to make sure your plumbing is going to work correctly after the sale.

1. Check the water lines

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to leaks. The hoses connecting your refrigerator water line, dishwasher and washing machine are good examples of this. Take a look at them and see if you notice any areas that have been rubbing or showing wear. If so, it is a good idea to replace them before they start to leak, as these hoses tend to be out-of-sight and out-of-mind where a leak can go unnoticed and cause a whole lot of damage before anyone even knows it’s there. If any of the hoses are 10 years old or older, plan on replacing those as well, even if they aren’t showing visible signs of wear. Think of it as cheap water damage insurance!

2. Inspect the flooring

Look at the floor around any plumbing fixtures like sinks, dishwashers, bathtubs, showers, toilets, and refrigerators. In rooms under upstairs bathrooms, look at the walls and ceilings and note any musty smells. If the flooring or sheetrock is warped, cracked, or stained it is a good indication that there was or is a leak. Plumbing leaks can cause much bigger problems such as mold or structural damage and are important to identify.

3. Check the water heater

Locate the water heater and note its age and condition. If it is over 10 years old or showing signs of rust, you will probably need to replace it soon. Gurgling sounds coming from the tank are signs of sediment build-up and another indicator that the water heater may need to be replaced. Hard water or iron can cause sediment to build up quickly and collect in the bottom of the tank, which makes the water heater lose efficiency and cost more to run. Unchecked, it can cause it to stop working altogether. It’s a good idea to flush the sediment from your water heater every 6 months to keep things working as long as possible. With a new home it’s a good idea to do it as soon as you arrive.

If the water heater does need to be replaced, consider installing a new ultra-high efficiency water heater or an on-demand tankless water heater. Both types can save energy, money and can keep you from ever running out of hot water.

4. Turn on all the showers

Running the showers can tell you about the water pressure, hot water availability and whether the waterheater is working properly. Calcium build-up on the shower head can also indicate that the house may have hard water.

5. Test the water quality

We use tap water for so many things pertaining to life and health; drinking, cooking, bathing, washing. Surprisingly, water quality is often overlooked! The municipal water in Asheville is notoriously bad tasting, and the wells around here can be high in iron, hardness, and acidity. These contaminants can be dealt with, but it’s a good idea to you’re your water tested up front so that you know what you have. We offer professional comprehensive water testing and customized water filtration options.

Buying or selling a house represents one of the biggest financial decisions most people make. Use this simple plumbing checklist to help you be more informed and aware as you buy, sell, or move into your new home.

If you would like a professional Asheville plumber to look at your house, please don’t hesitate to contact us! We offer complete and thorough plumbing safety and efficiency inspections. We’d be happy to answer any plumbing questions you may have.

Call today to schedule an appointment at 828-774-7076 or visit us online at goodmanforthejob.com.
Need a professional, licensed and courteous Asheville Plumber? — Good Man for the Job!

Homage to the Ultra High Efficiency Water Heater

Homage to the Ultra High Efficiency Water Heater

The Ultra High Efficiency Water Heater Really Is Ultra Efficient

As a plumber, I run across a wide variety of products and plumbing systems. I find myself curious and interested in new technology my industry comes up with, but very rarely am I impressed. I mean, truly honest-to-goodness wowed. One product that I am impressed with is the ultra high efficiency water heater (a.k.a. gas condensing water heater). These babies are real work horses!

Typical Water Heater Workings

To understand why I am so impressed, you need to know how a typical tank type gas water heater works. Basically, it has what looks like an extra large stove burner under a tank with a flue pipe for gas. Inside this flue pipe is a wavy sheet of steel called the baffle. The baffle slows down the escaping hot gas just enough so that heat can be transferred to the water. This design is very inefficient. As it leaves the water heater, the gas still contains so much heat that we have to install double-walled metal flue pipe if it is close to anything combustible, otherwise it will start a fire. So much money is spent to heat that water, and then most of the heat is lost out the top.

The Ultra High Efficiency Water Heater Difference

So what is the difference with an ultra high efficiency water heater? They look similar to regular water heaters, but these things might as well not even be from the same planet. Firstly, the burner sits on top and the flame is less like a stove and more like a jet engine. Then there is a fan that pushes the heat down through a central pipe spiraling down through the inside of the tank, which allows time for the heat to transfer into the water. In fact, 96% of the heat from the flames transfers to the water. Cue the term “ultra high-efficiency”. (Not to be confused with what are sometimes labeled as “high-efficiency” conventional types. Those are only 8% more efficient than the older, regular models.)

Remember the double-walled metal flue pipe the other water heater needed so it did not burn down your house? Well, this thing pulls out so much heat that that flue pipe is made of plastic. It’s plastic and it doesn’t melt. But wait! That’s not all! When you fire this up, it heats 50 gallons of cold water to 120 degrees in about 15 minutes. So what is the big deal with that? Let me tell you!

Tankless vs. Ultra High Efficiency Water Heaters

Right now, there is a big movement to go to tankless (which, by the way, is a great invention and a huge improvement over conventional), but there are sometimes issues with tankless water heaters—unexpected issues that can require you to change your lifestyle in order to accommodate the tankless’ gallons-per-minute limitation. That is, with a tankless, you have endless sequential hot water, but you can’t have a large quantity at once. Ultra high efficiency water heaters heat water so quickly that it’s almost like having a tankless, but without those limits. It’s the best of both worlds, really: virtually endless hot water, and as much of it as you want.

Cost and Energy Savings

On top of that, the cash you save on energy bills is quite substantial compared to the cost of using a traditional tank. It is estimated that the savings over the lifetime of an ultra high efficiency water heater is in the $2,550 range, which would help cover the extra cost of installing this amazing piece of equipment, while you reduce your carbon footprint at the same time.

For all of these reasons, installing these types of water heaters is something that makes us feel proud of our work at Goodman Plumbing, knowing that we are helping to make a difference one ultra high efficiency water heater at a time!

If you’d like to read a little more about different types of water heaters, we have pages dedicated to each kind. Click here for a summary of water heater comparisons, conventional water heaters, tankless water heaters, ultra high efficiency water heaters, heat pump water heaters, or commercial water heaters. Let us know if you have any questions about anything regarding water heaters or how you can make your Asheville plumbing more water or energy efficient—we’d love to help you find a solution that is perfect for your needs.

When you need a good man for the job, call Goodman Plumbing828-774-7076