The Big Freeze

As most of the world knows pipes freeze in cold weather, but here in the San Francisco Bay Area it is a uncommon experience.  The weather here has been uncommon all right, Friday night the temperature was a balmy 39 degrees at 6:30 at night and who knows what it was at 4am in the morning.  I know all you readers in the east would say that's a heat wave. The weathermen predicted a cold storm from Canada coming in this week that will bring the snow level down to under a 1000 feet.

How Well Do HET Toilets Flush?

Have you ever wondered how well the new High Efficiency Toilets (HET) flush? I have, that's why I change the toilets in the shop several times a year. I test out new models and with a bunch of plumbers using them every day you really get a really good test. I use the results from the toilet testing to inform our customers about the different toilets and which one will work best for them.

Carbon Monoxide the Silent Killer

I went to a customers house today to check out their water heater and noticed that the flue was disconnected, I explained how this was a dangerous condition that could cause death! The customer acted surprised since this had been this way for quite a while and it was just their water heater. I then explained that all gas appliances create Carbon Monoxide.

What Makes a Good Plumber?

So what makes a good plumber? is it training? is it just  knowledge or is it more?  In my career as  plumbing contractor I have employed several hundred Plumbers some great some not so great.  One thing I have learned is that plumbing is not a easy trade, the products that we service range in age from brand new to over a hundred years old and when they are in need of repair it usually means a crisis for the homeowner.

Do We Have it Good?

I jumped out of bed this morning, OK maybe rolled out of bed would be more accurate and made my way to the bathroom where I found it occupied. My daughter and her family had spent the night after a Halloween party. So I made my way downstairs to use the downstairs bathroom, then to the kitchen to get a glass of water. As is my usual routine I jumped on the internet to check my email and low and behold a message from Google alerts about toilets. Being a plumber finding out about toilets in the news is of great interest.

Joe the Plumber - a plumbing legend?

In my meandering course through the whizzing ones and zeros we call the Internet, I was reminded of a certain plumbing story that begs to be dredged up from our hilarious history:

Joe the Plumber was just like any other guy, until he ran into - completely by coincidence - Senator Obama.  He criticized the future President’s tax proposal then and there, catching him unaware and off-balance.

His rise to fame was swift, and sure.  His criticisms were taken to heart by the Republican candidate, Senator John McCain, who set up Mr. Plumber as an avatar of the average American.