7 Benefits of the Plumbers Compliance Certificate

7 Benefits of the Plumbers Compliance Certificate

For most of us, when we need plumbing work done, it’s a fairly simple matter of finding a great plumber and then getting on with life. But what’s all this you’ve heard about plumbers compliance certificate?

If your drain is blocked, a pipe has gone bang, your hot water’s on the blink, or you’re getting a new kitchen sink installed, you’re going to need a plumber. But in Queensland legislation, plumbing work is actually categorised in four ways.

There’s unregulated work, minor work, notifiable work, and compliance assessable work. And depending on what you’re doing or getting done, you will almost certainly need a licensed tradie, you may need to let the Council know, and you may even need council approval or inspection.

So when you’re getting your plumbing done and you’re looking around for a great Gold Coast plumber, make sure to ask them if they know all about the plumbers compliance certificate.

What is a plumbing certificate of compliance?

Basically, it’s a document that a licensed plumber will give you and the relevant bodies that certify that the work they’ve done complies with all of the plumbing standards, codes and regulations that may be applicable.

Only a licensed plumber can issue a plumbing compliance certificate because it’s an important document that is crucial protection against bad workmanship.

What exactly is a plumbing compliance certificate for?

That plumbing compliance certificate isn’t just a piece of bureaucratic paper that the plumber signs off on. It’s proof that the work they’ve done is not only compliant but has been tested and proven to be safe.

It’s you and your plumber’s legal obligation to ensure plumbing work that is done is compliant, working and safe, and the plumbers compliance certificates are a permanent legal record of that.

What makes plumbers compliance certificates so important?

1. Dodgy tradies

As mentioned above, the main benefit of certified plumbers is to separate the best, fully licensed tradespeople from those prone to faulty workmanship.

2. Great tradies!

As the pay-off to isolating dodgy tradies, the best tradies are left over – which makes picking a great plumber to do your work all the easier and safer.

3. Gas Fitting

A gas compliance certificate confirms your gas fitter is licenced, and that the work carried out meets the required safety standards.

4. Property protection

If you engage a plumber who isn’t going to be able to meet state regulations, you’re putting your valuable property (and even more of your hard-earned money) at risk.

5. Safety

Never forget, all those regulations – including the plumbers compliance certificate – are there to protect you, your family and your community in terms of health, safety and comfort.

6. Penalties

In short, you want to avoid them! It’s not just the plumber that could be liable for breaching the rules about compliance certificates, you could too! And the penalties can be harsh, not to mention having to get the work done again … properly.

7. Insurance

If the plumbing certificate of compliance is missing or not completed correctly, you could run into trouble with your insurance company if you ever need to make a claim.

So in a nutshell, if you raise the issue of the plumbing compliance certificate with the plumber of your choice and they fob you off, that’s the perfect red flag to keep looking! You can be sure the guys at Gold Coast Plumbing Company are not just highly professional, skilled and experienced, they are fully licensed, insured and also well versed in all the ins and outs of the plumbers compliance certificate! For more info, check out our plumbing FAQs, or get in touch today on 1300 390 361.

How to Save Water at Home – 11 Simple Tips

How to Save Water at Home – 11 Simple Tips

The plumbing at your place is all about hot showers and healthy pipes – right? Not quite. How about your bank account? What about the health and future of your community and planet? And how on earth do you deal with those council water restrictions? Saving water is the key not only to doing the right thing but also to keeping your water bills nice and small. Here’s how to save water at home:

1. Catch it in a bucket

Does it take your shower 30 seconds to heat up? Have you thought about leaving a clean bucket in the bathroom to catch the cold shower water that is otherwise going straight down the drain? Your plants will appreciate this easy way to save water.

2. Change the shower head

The shower is where over 20% of your household’s water is going down the drain. But simply by switching to a water saving head can save 20,000 litres of water every year.

3. Use a timer

Did you know that your favourite song is almost certainly between 3 and 5 minutes long? Why not put it on when you have a shower – it’s plenty of time to wash thoroughly and great for conserving water while singing! It’s a great example of how to save water.

4. Check for leaks

Even after it’s finished flushing, do you still hear a trickle in the toilet? That leak is costing you water (and money) and it’s probably a very easy fix. Make sure you fix those leaky taps while you’re at it, too – you could even do it as a DIY job!

5. Install a rainwater tank

Thought about adding a rainwater tank to your place? It’s a great way to conserve water (and rainwater tastes delicious to drink, too). Ask your plumber about having it plumbed into the washing machine and toilet.

6. Turn off the tap!

Are you one of those people who clean their teeth with the tap running? Why!? It’s achieving nothing except wasting water and adding dollars to your bill.

7. Add a half-flush

Big water bill? Got an old toilet cistern? It could be the perfect opportunity to upgrade to a dual-flush toilet – using that half-flush can save an amazing 80 litres of water every single day.

8. Use energy efficient appliances

And while you’re upgrading that toilet, think about getting new, water-efficient dishwashers and washing machines, too. Look for stickers on them with lots of stars!

9. Design a water-wise garden

If you’re designing your garden from scratch, check out ways in which the layout and features will save you time, money and water without compromising your desired lifestyle.

10. Buy a pool cover

Believe it or not, you can lose the entire volume of your pool’s water over a year simply through evaporation. This amount is vastly reduced with a pool cover.

11. Use a broom

When it’s time to make those paved areas look spick and span at your place, do you still use a hose? Do the right thing and make the switch to a broom or blower instead.

So as our water bills continue to rise and council water restrictions remain in force, do your bit for your community and your wallet by applying some or all of these ways to save water. Think a leaky tap or inefficient hot water system might be adding to the problem? Considering a water tank? Just want to chat with an expert? Give the guys at Gold Coast Plumbing Company a call today on 1300 390 361.

Have another way on how to save water at home? Put it in the comments below to help others trying to save water.

4 Reasons For Low Hot Water Pressure In Your Home

4 Reasons For Low Hot Water Pressure In Your Home

After a long day at work or an intense workout in the gym, there’s almost nothing better than a long, hot blast under the shower. And if it’s a mere hot trickle, there’s almost nothing worse. So if you’ve got low hot water pressure at your place, it’s time to get to the bottom of it fast.

Especially if you’re cold, tired and irritable, having no hot water pressure really is a pain in the backside. But it could be even worse than that. The causes of low hot water pressure can be serious, leaving you not just chilly and unsatisfied, but out of pocket for serious repairs and damage.

Why is my hot water pressure low?

1. Clogged pipes or fixtures

More often than not, low hot water pressure in shower, bathrooms and other parts of the house are caused by your pipes.

Hopefully, they’re not broken or leaking, because they could be causing an awful mess if you haven’t discovered those damp carpets or walls yet.

More likely is that rust, calcium, debris, and sediment is just disturbing the flow of water. The problem could be simply in the shower head or tap itself, especially if you’ve noticed that one outlet has good pressure while another is low.

2. Hot water system sediment

It could be that the sediment is building up in the actual hot water system, in which case the hot water pressure will be affected throughout the entire house.

Luckily, a good plumber can drain, clean and flush your hot water system, and hopefully restore that lost hot water pressure.

3. Hot water system problems

If you know your area well and know for sure that water pressure isn’t a factor, it could be that your hot water system needs repair or replacement. A clear way to know the hot water system is the issue is to compare the flow with the cold water supply. If the hot water pressure is a lot lower than the cold, and you have low hot water pressure in whole house, you could have a system problem.

4. Hot water system filter

Some hot water systems have handy filters that are located on both the input and outputs. If they do their filtering job brilliantly, they will eventually need to be cleaned – and they could become so dirty that they are clogged. It could also be a valve that has given up the ghost, so give your plumber a call for assistance.

What to do about low hot water pressure:

1. Isolate

Hot water pressure low in the shower but nowhere else? Is the problem in one room, one fixture, or the whole house? Successfully isolating the problem is the first step.

2. Check leaks

Are there any signs of damp, including in the walls or carpet? Have you had a cursory look in the ceiling space? If you think you’ve found a leak or suspect one, call a plumber immediately to prevent further damage.

3. Check calcification

If you’ve narrowed down the leak to a particular fixture or room, check for calcification inside the fixture or pipe.

4. Check the hot water system

If the problem is throughout the whole house, it could be the hot water system that is on the blink. Check it over to see if there are leaks or damage, and test the valves.

5. Call the pros

If all else fails, don’t forget that you can always call your local plumber – especially as most hot water plumbing can actually be illegal or dangerous to DIY.

The Gold Coast Plumbing Company is just as committed to fixing your annoying low hot water pressure problem as you are, and services all areas from Surfers to Nerang, Upper Coomera to Robina and everywhere in between. Low hot water pressure in shower, bathroom or the whole house? Don’t put up with it, give us a call today!

Brown Water From Taps? 5 Water Quality Issues Explained

Brown Water From Taps? 5 Water Quality Issues Explained

It may never be at the top of our minds, but the water that comes out of our taps is really, really important. It washes our clothes, dishes and bodies and waters the lawn. But most importantly of all, it quenches the thirst of our beloved families or helps to make our food. So when it’s not crystal clear, alarm bells start to sound. Is their brown water coming out of your taps? Is it milky coloured? Other strange water discolouration or suspect quality? It can be alarming, but don’t worry quite yet!

Here are 5 water quality problems you should watch for:

1. Brown water from taps

No one wants to get thirsty and find that the water coming out tap is brown.

Brown, muddy or otherwise discoloured tap water can stain your washing, but it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to make you sick. Dirty tap water is often caused by manganese, a natural element that collects on the insides of your pipes. Sometimes, if you just run that tap for a good 10-15 minutes, this process of ‘flushing’ can fix the problem. That’s because the manganese is loosened up because of the pressure, but the biggest risk is really to the whites in your washing!

2. Milky tap water

Just like brown tap water is still safe for drinking, a milky colour in your glass is also probably no great cause for alarm.

Usually, you’re actually just seeing many tiny air bubbles that make their way into your glass after becoming trapped in your pipes. This can commonly happen after some plumbing work, or if a tap is suddenly discharged (but be careful at sudden discharge to stop water hammer – it can be a big problem!) and a release of carbon dioxide occurs. But remember, it’s just air – and air is harmless.

3. Blue tap water

Blue or bluey-green or otherwise coloured water can be even more alarming, especially if that hue is also cloudy in appearance – and the taste itself can be metallic and bitter.

The metallic taste is probably copper which has come from your corroding pipes. It’s a common occurrence if the pipes haven’t been used for a long while. Be aware that copper is not safe to consume, even for the preparation of food. However, the fix can be simple, with a 2-3 minute flush before using the taps quite often enough to clear the copper from the water.

4. Black bits in tap water

If your clean glass of water shows a lot of black, pepper-like specks floating around, it’s a sure sign that some of the gaskets, o-rings, and washers in your actual plumbing are starting to degrade.

Obviously, these bits of your plumbing are not designed to drink, so it’s the perfect time to call a local plumber!

5. Chemical or musty taste

If your water looks clear but it tastes seriously off, there are almost certainly chemicals in your water that you really don’t want to be there.

It could be that normal household chemicals have gotten into your water service lines via the backyard, causing the bad taste and sometimes even a smell as well. If the taste is particularly musty or earthy, it could even be blue-green algae, especially if it’s a warm time of the year. To be safe, don’t drink it as your taste buds are a great detector of unhealthy things to consume!

Luckily in Australia, the water quality is very good across the board, and even if it is a strange colour, it’s not likely to do your family any serious harm. Check out the useful information put out by the City of Gold Coast to see if the colour or smell or your water is cause for alarm.

So if your tap water is brown or otherwise strange, don’t panic. Ask your neighbours if they’re having the same issues, and if in doubt get in touch with the team at Gold Coast Plumbing Company! Cheers!

Image source: https://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/reports-of-brown-water-in-city-taps-decreasing-481660143.html

How to Stop Water Hammer (Before It’s Too Late!)

How to Stop Water Hammer (Before It’s Too Late!)

Water hammer is a hydraulic shock that typically occurs in old pipes after a valve is shut off suddenly. A series of loud bangs also occurs when there is an increase in water pressure in your water line.

So, if you live in an old house, you may think that it’s strange why there are banging noises inside your walls after you stop showering or using a washer. But it is not. It is normal for old pipes to get worn out at some point. And in this case, they absorb shock less from changes in the water pressure as you (or other appliances) rapidly open and shut off water supply flowing through the pipes.

For example, washers automatically control water flow from fully on to off within seconds. So, this sudden stoppage causes a hydraulic shock that makes your pipes bang against other fixtures. Over time this can lead to disastrous burst pipes and water leaks!

The video below explains in more detail the science behind the water hammer effect.

 

So know you know how water hammer works, it’s time for some water hammer solutions before it’s too late!

Check for loose mounting straps in your pipes

If you have been hearing water hammer for quite some time, it can damage the pipes enough to loosen from their straps or supports. It is recommended to do the following steps to know for sure:

  1. Go to where your pipelines are installed (e.g. basement)
  2. Find the valve that gives water supply to your toilet or other fixtures
  3. Observe as you turn on and off the valve; and
  4. Look for any atypical movements in the pipes
  5. Secure the loosen pipes with a clamp and see if they still produce a hammering sound afterward

If the noises still persist, you might really have a major water hammer problem so read on.

Drain your water system to replenish air chambers

Water hammer in pipes can be kept to a minimum by installing a new air chamber or a water hammer arrestor.

An air chamber is made of copper pipe that is used for absorbing water pressure by compressing it within the chamber. The chamber loses air as water come and go so it becomes less shock absorbent over time, causing that unwanted hammering noise.

So, to refill your air chambers with new air, follow these steps.

Locate the main valve of your water line and shut it off. Next, turn all faucets you could find around the house on. It’s also advisable to start with the highest water outlet in your house till you reach the lowest point.

Drain water from all open faucets and wait for 30 minutes. Make sure that water is also flushed from the toilet before turning the water supply on again to your house.

Observe for 10 minutes to see if the pressure is strong again to supply a steady stream of water throughout the pipeline. If successful, it should stop those banging noises.

Reduce water pressure

If the second tip doesn’t work at all, try to reduce water flow to your house by adjusting the water pressure regulator. This will lower water pressure and essentially help the pipes or air chambers absorb the shock wave to its capacity.

However, if you don’t have a regulator and a water pressure gauge, consider installing one so you can adjust water pressure whenever necessary at the right level. Make sure that your water pressure range doesn’t go beyond 30-55 psi to avoid further damage to your pipes.

Call a plumbing expert for assistance

If everything gets more technical than you expected, or if all else fails, contact a plumber near you immediately. Besides, other water hammer solutions like installing air chambers, arrestors, or even regulators can be a pain for a non-handyman.

Overall, whether you’re trying to resolve the issue on your own or hiring a plumber, regular maintenance is key to preventing water hammer from happening again.

 

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Researching Outdoor Shower Ideas? Answer These 2 Questions First!

Researching Outdoor Shower Ideas? Answer These 2 Questions First!

Now, we hope we don’t have to convince you that showering every day is a good idea. But personal hygiene aside, taking a hot or cool shower is either a perfect way to get into the morning, or something relaxing and cleansing to cap off another hard day of toil. But here’s something you may not have given much thought to: outdoor showers. Is it really a thing?

We’ve certainly all used one at the beach from time to time, but many people are discovering the joys of winding down and washing off amid the sun, breeze and even the stars in their actual garden.

Outdoor showers are also practical, particularly if you love getting dirty in the garden or sweaty during exercise. And outdoor showers are even a great way to reduce your big water bill in the long term, as sometimes a quick and efficient splash outside after a swim is all you need.

But in all likelihood, it’s an idea that will either appeal to you and your family or not. If it does, the Gold Coast Plumbing Company can help! We don’t just fix your plumbing, we can also help you renovate your bathroom or take the bold step of exploring outdoor shower ideas.

So if an outdoor shower sounds like a tantalising idea, we’re posing the first two questions you will want to consider before taking the invigorating plunge:

1. Simple or fancy?

outdoor shower ideasBefore you start to research outdoor shower ideas, know what kind of outdoor shower you want.

If what you really want is something super-practical to wash the sand or chlorine off after a swim, you can stick to the basics and keep your budget low with minimal parts, plumbing and an entry-level outdoor shower head.

But many lovers of outdoor showers aren’t just into the practical side of things – they want their outdoor shower to be a luxury retreat or indulgence. Believe it or not, many outdoor shower users consider a ‘shower au naturale’ to be one of life’s little pleasures, and like a mini holiday each and every day. And in that case, when it comes to imagination and the budget, the sky is the only limit.

2. Hot or cold?

The outdoor shower memories you probably have are of an invigorating and uncomfortable 30 seconds under chilling cold water. But particularly there’s no reason you can’t pipe steaming hot water to your outdoor showers.

Talk to the plumbing experts about how to manage this hot water outdoor shower solution the most affordably and practically. This will probably mean either tapping into your existing hot water infrastructure, or installing a new hot water system and choosing between electric, gas or continuous flow options.

Another option is to extend the environmental theme of your new outdoor shower idea by ‘going green’ and considering either a heat pump or solar hot water system.

With these two fundamental questions answered, you’re just about ready to strip off and start brainstorming those exciting outdoor shower ideas. But you’ll also be answering even more practical questions like:

  • What sort of screening or wall do I want?
  • Will I use plants for aesthetics and to further ensure outdoor showering privacy?
  • Do I need to consider drainage and outdoor lighting?
  • Is a half inside/half outside shower a better idea?

So many people are being won over by the practicality and luxury of various outdoor shower ideas. If outdoor showers appeal to you, get in touch with your local plumber. We can help with your outdoor shower on the Gold Coast or next bathroom renovation project, don’t hesitate to get in touch!