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Ceramic Discs For Taps

The taps that are on sale today are fitted with things called ceramic discs to control the water flow rate. These discs are very tough and dont need to be maintained. Of course nothing is usually bullet proof and a failure can occur, in which case the chances are that it will be the disc. These ceramic discs incorporate two holes in both so that when the tap is turned on, one moves and the other stays still. Once these holes line up, the water can flow. Causes:There might be a problem with the hole alignment, which can be down to small amounts of debris present in the fitting. Mechanical failure may also be the culprit. East London Plumbers can fit new ceramic disc cartridges.The discs can only be replaced, not repaired.The discs what is called handed which means that there is a right on and a left one, so they must not be fitted incorrectly.Inspection and Replacement:1). The first thing to do is to isolate the hot and cold water feeds and drain the water by opening the taps. Take off the heads of the taps. These should be a push on fit or you might need to use a screwdriver to remove the holding screw. 2). Keeping the tap body still, so that when you turn the mechanism it does not move also. Once the mechanism is accessible you will be able to see the actual cartridge.Should you not be confident to carry out this task you must call a professional tradesman like an East London Plumber who is trained to carry out the work.3). Remove the cartridge complete. Visually inspect for debris that may have caused the failure. If no debris or obvious damage is visible, then replace the whole unit with a new one. A good idea is to inspect the seal as well.If necessary, fit a new seal. Re-fit the tap, restore the water supplies and inspect for any leaks.

Carbon Monoxide Fumes

Everyone should really know the symptoms, and what to do if they suspect that carbon monoxide fumes are present in their home. They also need to know what measures they can take to stop the fumes from being produced in the first place. Carbon monoxide is a killer that has no discernable tastes, smells or anything that will indicate its presence until it is too late.Carbon Monoxide Detectors:The gas detectors are available at most retailers and are not highly priced. Ideally fitted all over the house, on all floors, in particular the bedrooms and areas close to boilers and flues. Fit where an open flue or solid fuel burning appliances are located. Do not be fit above or next to boilers, fires or cookers, as they have been known to give out carbon monoxide that could give a false alarm as they fire up.Location:Position the detectors at 150mm down from the ceiling, higher is fine, never lower. Higher than windows or doors that can be opened, between 1.8m and 4.5m from a potential source, and not in any areas of humidity like a bathroom due to water/steam damage. An East London Plumber knows the warning signs. Central Heating Boiler:The heating boiler needs to burn with a particular shape and colour of the flame which indicates it is safe and not producing carbon monoxide. Looking at the flame through the glass viewer on the boiler and you should see the flame burning blue with the in and outer core well defined. Should the flame burn orange or yellow, then the combustion is not right and should be sorted. East London Plumbers are gas safe. If a combustion issue occurs, the flame begins to release soot, covering everything around the boiler.Symptoms:Should any of the symptoms below be experienced, then, you need to turn off the boiler and call a professional gas engineer. You must always report any problems with gas.Headaches.Tiredness.Vomiting.Nausea.If you or anyone in the home experiences any of these symptoms, then you should shut the boiler down and call a gas safe engineer straight away, headaches, tiredness, dizziness and nausea. ALWAYS REPORT IT!

Shower mixers

In a shower, the water flows to a mixer tap or thermostatic mixer where the temperature is adjusted for comfort. From the mixer, the warm water flows through a single pipe to the showerhead. East London Plumbers can fit all mixers.There are three types of mixer:1). A combination bath mixer tap and shower.2). A manual shower mixer.3). A thermostatic mixer.In the first, that average of the water is adjusted by turning the hot and cold taps until the water running from the mixer tap is a suitable temperature, and then operating a button to divert the water to the showerhead. This is a good option if you want to keep the running costs down. In the second, a manual mixer features a single control for regulating the temperature and flow of water in the shower. While this is a good low-cost option, it’s not such a good idea if the shower is intended to be used by children or elderly people.In the third, the mixer incorporates a control to preset the temperature of the water. They are a little more expensive than ordinary mixers, but well worth the extra financial outlay on many counts. They are much safer to use than other types of shower because the temperature is regulated. If someone uses hot or cold water elsewhere in the house, a thermostat mixer instantly adjusts the water flow so that the temperature of the shower remains the same. The temperature dial operates independently of the on/off control, so the temperature setting can be maintained when the water is turned off. When you next use the shower, the temperature will be exactly the same. This is a good option when it is intended that the shower will be used by children or elderly people. It is also possible to get fail-safe units that can be locked to a safe temperature. The mechanism inside a thermostatic mixer shower is complicated. An East London Plumber understands mixers. The temperature is controlled by a small wax field piston or a bi-metallic strip mechanism, which continually adjusts the flows from hot and cold pipes to give a constant outlet temperature.

Thermostatic showers

The mechanism contained in a thermostatic shower mixer does not very much between the different makes and styles, however, there are many options when it comes to the controls, pipework connections and the material specifications. East London Plumbers can fit all types of mixer showers.Option 1.With this unit, the pipework is hidden in the wall. The unit has two rotary dial controls, want to set the temperature, the other to control the flow of water from off all the way through to the maximum flow rate. This is really a very good option when the wall is a hollow partition wall, or where it is made out of plasterboard. If you want to fit a use of this type on solid walls, you will have no choice but to channel the wall and make good plaster. An East London Plumber will make good any mess from an installation.Option 2.With this unit, just about everything is chrome plated including the feed pipes, the showerhead and the body of the mixer unit itself. This type of installation is suitable for solid or partition walls. Please note that the hot feed pipe will get very hot and should not be touched so perhaps this type should be avoided if you have young children or if the homeowner is an elderly person. The controls for this sort of units may also be either in the form of a rotary dial or an all in one joystick, the stick is lifted to turn the water on, and moved left and right to change the temperature. The chrome finish on the mixer unit will emphasise limescale and salt deposits so it will need regular cleaning to maintain the high shine finish.

Plumbing in a water softener

If you have an indirect water supply system, the water coming into your house to the rising mains straight up to the cold water storage tank in the loft, with a branch off to your kitchen tap (and maybe an outside tap in the garden). East London Plumbers can fit this unit.A water softener diverts this cold water feed through the softener treatment tank before returning it to the pipe that feeds the cold water storage tank in the loft. This means that the water used in the majority of the house, including the central heating system, hot water, cold water to bathrooms and the WC cistern, is all treated by the water softener. If you have the time and money, it is sometimes better to connect the WC cistern directly to the rising main before the softener, and fit a small nozzle in the ballcock valve in the WC cistern. (This is because toilets consume a lot of water during flushing, and although it may occasionally be necessary to use a descaler in the WC pan, the consumption of softened water will be considerably reduced by the implementation of this measure). Although it can seem a bit fiddly, plumbing for the water softener must be installed correctly or there is a risk of water contamination.Connecting up.Working from the mains stop cock (under the sink), fit a one-way valve with the flow direction heading into the house, a small draincock, a washing machine style valve for the feed to the softener, a service valve (fitted with a knob) to divert the water flow through the softener (and to bypass the softener if it is out of action), and another washing machine tap (the return from the water softener). Use valves that have a quarter turn action, which are fitted with a knob that indicates whether the valve is open or closed. With servicing, this makes it easier to see at a glance whether the water softener is in flow or bypass mode. An East London Plumber can service this appliance.

Fitting a Garden Tap

A garden tap is very useful for jobs such as cleaning the car, watering the garden, washing the dog and filling up the paddling pool. Apart from a 15 mm copper pipe and various joints to suit your situation you will need a stopcock, a non return valve the main, a drain cock, and a bib tap to complete the task. East London Plumbers install outside plumbing.Method.1). In one of the under sink kitchen cupboards use a drill bit 25 mm in diameter to drill a hole through the wall to the outside, at about the height of your knee and as near as possible to the rising main.2). Turn off the main stopcock run the rising main dry. Cut into the main at a point directly below the drill hole and fit a T joint.3). From the T joint (and running directly up the hole) fit a short length of pipe, then the stop cock, then the non-return valve, and the drain cock. Make sure that the arrows marks on the various fittings are all pointing in the direction of flow.4). This and now for the difficult bit, making a neat job of the various joints while at the same time ensuring that the pipes fit closely to the walls. From the drain cock, run a pipe through the wall so that it connects to the bib tap, and screw the tap securely to the wall. An East London Plumber will do this.5). Finally, having first checked that all the joys of dry, stuff the hole in the wall with a fibreglass roof insulation or foam, then squeeze silicone sealant in and around the outside end of the whole to prevent the possibility of water leaking through. And the job is done.

General maintenance to do yourself

To prolong the life of the central heating system, the most effective maintenance you can carry out yourself is to make sure that the system is properly filled with corrosion inhibitor. This is important, and the components of the system (boiler, pipes and radiators) will not last long without protection. To find out whether or not your system has protection, do the following test. East London Plumbers can sort this.Draw off a water sample from one of the bleed taps at the top of the radiator when the system is on and the water is hot (take care not to burn yourself). Put the water in a jam jar and drop in a shiny new steel nail. Fill in this another jar with ordinary tap water and place a similar nail in it. After a couple of days, the nail in the tap water will go rusty as corrosion begins. On the other hand the nail in the radiator water should remain bright. If it does, your system doesn’t need to have corrosion inhibitor added, but if it starts to go rusty, you need to add the inhibitor. If the water bled from a radiator is black and murky, this is called sludge. The system needs to be flushed out with a proprietary chemical. To do this, tie the ballcock in the feed and expansion tank to a stick set across the top of the tank so that the water can flow into the tank. Drain the system by opening the drain cock at the lowest point in the radiator pipe work. Pour the flushing chemical into the feed and expansion tank and then allow the ballcock to partially fill the tank, at which point the flushing chemical will be drawn into the system. While some products require slightly different procedures, the next step usually involves draining the system and washing out all the flushing chemicals and sludge. Finally, refill the system with water and corrosion inhibitor to protect everything from rusting, and the job is done it sounds a bit complicated, but in fact it’s quite easy to do. An East London Plumber is qualified to do this. You won’t go far wrong if you follow the instructions supplied by the manufacturer of the flushing chemical.