How to Patch A Leaky Pipe While You Wait For a Plumber

How to Patch A Leaky Pipe While You Wait For a Plumber

  • Plumbing

While we at McHales love to see the DIY spirit, somethings just require a professional touch. Leaky pipes are a prime example. When water is coming out of anything but your faucet or shower head, it’s going to take more than a little duct tape to fix the problem in a meaningful way and that’s where we come in. And while our response times are among the fastest in the biz, we can’t teleport directly to your home. Meanwhile, you still have a leaky pipe, which can lose as much as 250 gallons of water through a 1/8 inch crack. While they aren’t permanent fixes, there are some band-aid solutions you can apply to stop the flow temporarily. Here are some easy things you can do to hold down the fort while you wait for the cavalry to come.

Pipe Epoxy

You’re probably already familiar with these types of products since they’re widely available at most hardware stores. Basically, it’s a chemical compound that starts out soft and hardens over time after application to a leak. Think of it like putting some water resistant glue over the hole. They can be relied on for a few weeks, but you still need a plumber to come out and fix the issue once and for all. A temporary solution, but an easy one for the average person to access and deal with. There’s a lot of different brands out there, but for our money, here are some of the ones we recommend:

  • Flex Paste
  • J-B Weld Epoxy Adhesive
  • Oatey Fix-It Stick
  • Gorilla Epoxy Adhesive

Pipe Tape

Literally a band-aid solution. These are exactly what they sound like: tape you put around your pipes to stem the flow of water. Pipe tapes are most commonly made from resin impregnated fiberglass/PVC tape so they can stand up to the water flowing underneath. It work really well on joints and elbows, which are some of the more common plumbing fixtures that spring leaks in the first place. Since they are essentially heavy duty pieces of tape, they do eventually lose their adhesive quality over time usually in a , but in a pinch, pipe tape can be a life saver for a homeowner trying to stop a leak before a plumber arrives. Here’s a few of our recommended brands:

  • Rescue Tape
  • F4 Tape
  • Blue Monster
  • Gorilla Waterproof Tape

Rubber Pipe Connectors

In the event of a major leak at a joint or elbow, a little tape isn’t going to do much for you. Rubber pipe connectors are the thing you’ll need. This remedy is best for leaks that occur around joints or in the middle of water piping. And while it’s much more effective and longer lasting than both epoxies and tapes, it’s a lot more difficult to apply for the average homeowner without extensive plumbing know-how. They may not be the best choice to patch your leaky pipe while waiting for a plumber, we do have some products we tend to recommend for those who it is right for.

  • Watts Rubber Fittings
  • Fernco
  • Cherene

Pipe Clamps

Clamps are another common quick fix while waiting for a plumber. Though more often found in commercial settings, they work just as well holding together a leak in a private home. These pieces of metal are screwed, bolted, wrapped, or otherwise affixed to the pipe, covering the leak. They’re often pretty cheap and easy to apply, so they remain a popular choice among those in need of fast plumbing repairs. And where other products have some variance based on brands, pipe clamps are largely the same no matter which brand you go with. The differences are in the types of clamps, which will vary based on where your leak is and what type/size of pipe you’re dealing with.

Schedule a consultation with a call to McHale’s today!

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“What’s Wrong With My Air Conditioner Unit?”

“What’s Wrong With My Air Conditioner Unit?”

  • Air Conditioning
air conditioner unit

“What’s Wrong With My Air Conditioner Unit?” A dreaded question no homeowner wants to have to ask, especially as we enter the dog days of summer.  Your air conditioner unit is going to be your best friend in the coming months as temperatures soar into the 80’s and 90’s. When your air conditioner unit stops working, you need answers and you need them fast. The best thing to do is to call a professional, but here are some of the most common reasons your AC might be broken.

Electrical Failure

The most common reason air conditioner unit’s fail is electrical failure. An unreliable circuit breaker or a blown fuse are two of the most usual suspects. These are simple enough issues that some handy homeowners may be able to fix themselves. Failing that, there’s a more serious issue at hand. For all other electrical-related mishaps with your AC, we recommend getting a licensed and trained technician on-site.

Frozen Coil

When was the last time you changed out your air filter? Hopefully it was relatively recently, as old, worn-out filters and dirty ductwork are surefire ways to get yourself a frozen coil. The coil is a critical component in your unit’s airflow meaning that it’s a critical component to your AC functioning. You can check your coil by looking down into your air conditioner, but you’re going to need to call a repairman to remove it and install a replacement.

Refrigerant Leak

Refrigerant is the liquid inside your air conditioner unit that empowers it to do its job in cooling down your home. Think of it as the lifeblood of your system. If there’s a leak sprung, it’s important to get it fixed very quickly. Refrigerant fluid can be hazardous to the environment and your health, so it’s best to get it cleaned up and replaced by a McHales team member as soon as possible.

Damaged Hardware

Being outside, your AC is prone to the elements and all that they bring along with them. Important components of your air conditioner unit, including the fan, the compressor, and the electrical connections, wear down over time, especially in units more than five years old. These components are usually obscured inside the unit itself, and issues with them are only diagnosed by a technician digging around in there and finding them. The good news here is that there’s a reliable way to prevent these issues before they get the better of your trusty cooling system…

A Lax Maintenance Routine

Regular HVAC maintenance is paramount to ensure your system runs smoothly when you need it the most. Having a professional come in at regular intervals and inspect your air conditioner unity from the ground up will help you both catch any latent issues before they become AC breaking problems. A trained McHales technician has the skills and know how to pick up on potential problems before they rear their ugly head, but they need to have eyes on your system to do so. Regular maintenance is THE best way to make sure your AC never needs an emergency repair.

Schedule a consultation with a call to McHale’s today!

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6 Signs It’s Time for an AC Replacement in Bucks County

6 Signs It’s Time for an AC Replacement in Bucks County

  • Air Conditioning
AC replacement in Bucks County by McHale's

We talked before about how important it is to tune-up your AC every once in a while. However, sometimes some maintenance won’t be enough to get it through the summer. Nothing lasts forever, and losing your air conditioning can be a major loss, especially during the summer. If it is still working fine, maybe you’re just being cautious and planning ahead. Whatever the case, Jones Services can tell you the signs that you’ll need an AC replacement in Bucks County.

Here are 6 signs you should get an AC replacement in Bucks County:

 

The AC reached retirement age.

How long have you owned your current AC? According to the National Association of Home Builders, well-maintained AC units can last anywhere from 10 to 15 years. If your AC has reached this point and isn’t working like it used to, it might be time to retire it. It may seem like a major cost, but don’t worry! You can use this opportunity to purchase a modern unit that’s more energy efficient.

 

The AC has a refrigerant leak.

A refrigerant leak is a serious problem with your AC. The leaking coolant can pose a health risk to your family and the water leakage can damage your home. It’s possible to fix serious leaks by getting a new coil, but it might be a sign you should get a new AC.

 

A repair would cost too much.

Sometimes replacement parts and repairs for your AC don’t justify their high costs. It gets more unappealing when you’re talking about a unit with an expired warranty. If this is the case, you should pick up a new unit and get a new warranty.

 

Your AC is making strange noises.

Is your AC operating louder than it normally does? AC units are supposed to run quietly, so any grinding, banging, or rattling noises are a major concern. These noises can represent something like a slipped belt or broken motor bearings. If these issues aren’t fixed quickly, you’ll have a costly repair or replacement on your hands.

 

The AC air isn’t cold.

If you turn on the AC and cool air doesn’t come out within a few minutes, there’s a problem. A wide variety of issues can cause this problem, like low Freon levels or a broken compressor. Whatever the case may be, it’s an obvious sign that your AC has an issue.

 

Your AC needs frequent repairs.

You may want to keep an AC operational for a good while through repeated repairs. However, doing this may eventually lead you to spend more than you would from getting a replacement. This is more likely if your warranty has expired and isn’t helping with repair costs.

 

Why should I have McHale’s install my next AC?

With almost 70 years of experience helping homeowners, McHale’s is one of the area’s home service long-runners. When you call us to examine your unit, we’ll give you everything you need to know about costs, benefits, and installation needs. To this day, we still practice our founder’s policy of “measure twice, order once.” If you’re in need of an AC replacement in Bucks County, just call McHale’s to sort everything out!

By McHales