Whether it’s a traditional storage tank or an instantaneous system, a hot water heater delivers hot water to the faucets and showerheads in your home or office.
An experienced hot water plumber will ensure that your hot water heater is set to the right temperature, and they’ll also help you to better understand hot water safety in the home or workplace.
Hot water safety
Hot tap water can cause real harm in everyday households – especially to small children and elderly people – if not managed carefully.
Something as simple as washing your hands or unexpectedly stepping into a scalding hot shower can cause painful burns and lasting damage to your skin if the water temperature is too hot.
Legally, the temperature of hot water coming out of any tap or showerhead in Victoria (unless specifically required) can’t be more than 50°C. This temperature is considered warm enough to heat up your baths and showers, but not so hot as to cause severe burns.
There are some exemptions to the 50°C rule, including childcare centres, schools and nursing homes, where – for safety reasons – the hot water coming out of any faucet must be capped at a maximum temperature of 45°C.
Maintaining a safe water temperature
To prevent harmful bacteria from growing, the water in hot water heaters needs to be stored at a temperature higher than 60°C.
However, if the storage temp (60°C) is higher than the legal outlet temp (50°C), then how does the temperature cool down that additional 10°C before reaching the tap?
As your handy hot water plumber will tell you, a tempering valve (for traditional hot water tanks) or remote temperature control (for instantaneous systems) will reduce the temperature of hot water before it comes out of the faucet.
So long as your hot water system has a remote temperature control or tempering valve installed and activated, you won’t have to worry about scalding hot water coming out of taps or showerheads in your home.
Set your hot water heater at a safe temperature
With the help of your local hot water plumber, preventing hot water burns is easy. Talk to one of our experienced plumbers today to ensure that your hot water heater is set at a safe temperature for your home or workplace.
If you’re building a new home or office, or are ready to upgrade your current hot water system, we recommend installing an instantaneous system with the help of an experienced hot water plumber.
What is an instantaneous hot water system?
A traditional hot water tank stores a set amount – this could be anywhere from 90 to 300 litres, depending on the size – of hot water within it. As it is used up, cold water fills the tank to replenish it.
When the hot water is used up in a traditional tank, expect your shower or tap water to go unexpectedly cold, and to stay that way for some time while the water in the tank reheats.
Unlike a traditional hot water tank, an instantaneous hot water system won’t have you stuck in a cold shower. This modern system is designed to heat water when you need it, and to shut off when you’re not using it.
Instantaneous hot water systems are activated when you turn the water on. This action subsequently turns on the gas or electricity needed to heat the elements contained within the pipe that heat the water as it travels through.
Preset heat for safety
With a remote temperature control, you can preset the heat of the water so that it never goes above your chosen temperature. This is especially important for a home with children as it ensures that your hot water won’t burn them.
Instantaneous hot water systems are durable and long-lasting. Though they cost more than a traditional hot water tank, their lifespan is up to 10 years longer. Where a hot water tank lasts up to 10 years, an instantaneous system can last up to 20 years.
Hot water tanks need room for storage. Their bulkiness takes up a lot of space if installed inside the home, and they jut out unattractively if added to the exterior. Instantaneous systems, on the other hand, have a simple, aesthetic design that doesn’t take up much space at all.
Neverending hot water supply
The number one benefit of an instantaneous system is that you will never run out of hot water. No matter how many showers you have or hot water wash cycles you run, you’ll always have enough hot water to go around.
Is an instantaneous hot water system for you?
With all of the benefits that come with installing an instantaneous system, we think it’s definitely one to consider for your new build or upgrade.
Instantaneous systems can run on gas or electricity, and an experienced hot water plumber can advise you on the installation process that will work best for your home.
A home built without proper ventilation can lead to all sorts of problems, including excessive condensation, lack of air circulation, air pollutants and allergens. Calling in a leak detection specialist will help you to identify potential problems before they cause any serious damage.
Problems caused by unventilated spaces
Condensation occurs when cold surfaces come into contact with warm air, or when humidity is prevalent in the home. While condensation is common in colder climates, the humidity of warmer climates can also play a huge part in causing condensation damage.
Without any ventilation in your home, trapped moisture will cause condensation. Ultimately, this can lead to mould, rot and deterioration of the ceiling and walls in places where the condensation is most prominent.
When condensation begins to build up, it causes mould. Because mould thrives in damp areas, a home with little ventilation and lots of condensation makes the perfect place for it to grow.
The following are signs that you could have mould in the house:
Visible mould spores
Dark or coloured spots on the walls or ceilings
Musty or damp odour
Dark or pink colouring on the shower floor or in the grout
You experience lingering cold symptoms that won’t go away
Your asthma or seasonal allergies worsen
Mould can be toxic to humans and when left untreated, it can have seriously adverse effects on your eyes, lungs and skin. If you’re experiencing mould due to excessive condensation in your home, it’s important to check for any water leaks that could be contributing to the problem.
Lack of air circulation
Lack of ventilation in your home can cause the air to become still and stagnant. In turn, this traps harmful pathogens like spores, bad bacteria and viruses inside with no other way of getting out into the open air.
Everyday household items like hairspray, nail polish and general cleaning products often contain chemicals that stay in the air long after the smell is gone. Without proper ventilation, these toxins will hang around for anyone in your home to inhale.
Air pollutants and allergens
As air pollutants like carbon monoxide and cigarette smoke can get trapped inside without proper ventilation, so too can allergens like dust, pet dander and pollen. This can lead to some nasty smells and serious health problems down the line if left unchecked.
Opening up the doors and windows of your home will help to rid the air of pollutants and allergens, while fresh, clean air circulates back inside. An exhaust fan or ventilation system will also help to clear the air – without you having to worry about letting any cold or hot air in.
Make sure your home is properly ventilated
Whether you live in the tropics or a city like Melbourne with colder temperatures in winter, proper ventilation throughout your home will help to prevent any of the above issues from afflicting your abode.
Carbon monoxide is a tasteless, odourless and invisible gas that is poisonous to humans. There is a natural concentration of carbon monoxide in the air that doesn’t harm us, but when that level rises, it can begin to cause serious damage.
Found naturally in bushfires and volcanoes, carbon monoxide also comes from unnatural sources including tobacco smoke and car exhausts as well as gas heaters and appliances.
Carbon monoxide in Australia
Carbon monoxide levels throughout Australia’s smaller towns and cities are low enough that they won’t cause harm to our health. In some of our larger cities, carbon monoxide levels may be slightly higher and could potentially cause harm.
Because of the potential harm that carbon monoxide can cause – and because we are unable to detect the poisonous gas ourselves – it is important for us to bring in tools and professionals who can detect it for us.
By testing for dangerous levels of carbon monoxide in your home or workplace, you can prevent the poison from causing harm to yourself or others and take action to eliminate high levels if they should arise.
Signs carbon monoxide could be making you sick
If carbon monoxide levels build up within your home or workplace, you and those sharing your space are likely to get sick. If not detected soon enough, the toxic gas can negatively impact your health long-term or even cause death.
Recognising the symptoms associated with carbon monoxide poisoning could help you to save yourself and your family before the gas has a chance to cause irreversible harm. Keep an eye out for any of the following:
Loss of consciousness
Testing for carbon monoxide in your home or workplace
The efficient team at Plan B Plumbing will test any and all of the appliances in your home that could be a potential source of carbon monoxide. These may include:
Gas or kerosene heaters
Gas-fueled appliances or space heaters
Gas ranges and stoves
Gas or wood-burning fireplaces
Any fireplaces lacking ventilation
When inhaled in large amounts, carbon monoxide can be fatal. In order to prevent any harm from coming to yourself or anyone else sharing your space, it is vital that you bring in a professional to test the carbon monoxide levels in your home or office.
Keep your family safe and the air clear in your home or workplace with Plan B Plumbing
Identifying indoor plumbing problems can be a tricky task
Indoor plumbing problems can be hard to find, especially if you don’t know where to look. We’ve made things easier for you by putting together a list of 6 common indoor plumbing problems – and how to spot them.
You’ve finished washing the dishes, taken out the plug, cleared away any food debris and noticed that the water is taking a while to drain out of the sink. When you come across this problem, you’ll find that it’s usually due to a clog in the pipes.
The clog could either be in the attached pipes or in the main sewer line. A professional plumber will be able to identify the source and get your drains running smoothly once again.
A bad smell in the kitchen or bathroom can be caused by a variety of factors, like bacteria buildup, a bucket of food scraps or a stray dirty sock. But when the bad smell is coming from the drain, the solution might not be as easy as simply doing the washing.
Bad smells emanating from drains can often be chalked up to a clog in the pipes. If not a clog, it could be a result of sewer gas rising up through the drain. Either way, taking action is a must if you want to get rid of the smell.
Having mould in the house is a pretty clear indication that somehow, water is getting in – and it isn’t drying up. Leaking pipes are one of the key reasons for having mould around, as is a damaged roof or damp basement.
While the cause might not always be linked to plumbing, it is still important to understand why there is mould showing up in your home and how you can get rid of it.
Low water pressure
Low water pressure in the house could be due to a water leak, blocked pipe or faucet, or having the shut-off valve in the wrong position.
While it’s possible for you to resolve the minor issues on your own, we recommend calling in a plumber to help with the more serious ones (like water leaks).
Brown spots, bubbling paint or peeling wallpaper
Brown spots on the ceilings or walls can only mean one thing: somehow, somewhere, there is a water leak.
Bubbling paint can also point you in the direction of a leak, as can peeling wallpaper – although it’s best to check whether peeling wallpaper is because of water damage, or because of general wear and tear.
When the water coming out of your tap is brown, murky or riddled with debris, it could be unsafe to drink.
Discoloured water usually means corrosion or rust in the pipes. If you find yourself faced with this problem, we highly recommend bringing in a professional to help get your water back to normal.
Keep an eye out for indoor plumbing problems
Indoor plumbing problems might start off small, but they can escalate quickly. In order to keep your house in good condition – and your plumbing functioning as it should – be sure to call in a plumber if you notice any of these issues in your home.
The thing about water leaks is that often, you don’t even know they’re happening. A dripping tap is obvious because you can see and hear it. But a concealed, undetectable leak? Those are much harder to spot.
Identifying whether you have a leak means checking for the following:
Can you hear running water even though no taps, appliances or evaporative coolers are turned on?
Has your water bill been climbing over the past few months?
Are there any unidentified, foul-smelling odours around the house?
Do your walls or floors have unexplainable wet areas?
Is your water metre changing even when you aren’t using water?
Faucets: Using a torch, look for moisture under the sink. If you find any, clear out the cupboard and search for water stains, mould or peeling/swollen material.
Toilets: Remove the cistern lid and listen for a hissing sound. Alternatively, try putting some food colouring in the cistern and seeing whether it leaks into the toilet bowl.
Showers and bathtubs: Inspect the floor around the shower and the bathtub. If there is a crawl space under the tub, check there as well. Look for loose tiles, peeling paint, mould or swollen floorboards or vinyl.
Hot water tanks: Check the hot water valve or listen for a hissing sound. Remember that these tanks contain hot water – keep a safe distance and avoid getting burnt.
Outdoor taps: Easy to identify, a leaking outdoor tap is also easy to fix. The issue is when the leak is coming from somewhere else, like underground pipes.
Underground pipes: Search for irregular damp spots on the ground that are far from any outdoor water sources. Can you see a puddle even though it hasn’t been raining?
Swimming pools and spas: As with underground pipes, look for damp, sunken or eroded spots around the pool area. Check around the filter, heater and pipe valves.
Sewerage: Sewerage leaks are often the hardest to detect because the pipes run underground. Causes could include tree roots that pierce or move the pipes, or leaking joints. A plumber can identify the problem by inserting a camera into the drain.
Call a plumber
Finding the source of a leak brings you one step closer to fixing the problem. If you can identify the cause or the location, you’ve done well!
Knowing when to bring a professional into the mix means admitting when you might need help. If you have found the leak but don’t have any knowledge around how to fix it, we’d recommend calling in the experts.
Hiring a skilled plumber to detect and fix a water leak in your home is the best option for many reasons. Not only will it save you time, but also money spent on exorbitant water bills and any further deterioration to the area.
A blocked sewer drain is not just an inconvenience, it can also cause very serious problems for your toilets, bathtub, washing machine, showers and sinks if left too long without being fixed. It can also be a health and hygiene issue.
How do I know if my sewer drain is blocked?
Luckily, it is usually easy to identify when you have a blocked sewer drain, which means you can have a plumber attend to it as quickly as possible. Some signs that your sewer drain may be blocked include:
Wastewater reappearing in your sinks, shower or bathtub;
A bubbling or blocked toilet (especially when you are using another sink or shower); and/or
Foul odour coming from your drains.
These issues occur because when a sewer line is blocked up, the water cannot flow freely through it the way it was intended. Instead, the wastewater flows back up through the pipe and exits at the lowest most point, which is usually the drain in the shower.
What causes a blocked sewer drain?
Tree roots are the primary cause of blocked sewer drains. Tree roots are attracted to the moisture contained in the drains and thrive due to the constant supply of water. Clogs caused by tree roots are more commonly found in older homes but take place in newer homes as well. Tree root growth can also occur outside of the pipe and over time the sheer pressure of their weight can cause the pipe to collapse in on itself.
Un-flushable items such as wet wipes, sanitary products and paper towels are becoming increasingly more common as the cause of blocked sewer drains. Most of these products will feature a warning on their packaging that they are not safe to flush – and there is a good reason for that!
If your sewer is blocked, it is important that you act quickly. A blocked sewer drain means that the sewerage has no way of departing your plumbing system and this can result in raw sewage flowing back up through your drains and into your home.
A blocked sewer drain is not to be taken lightly and could cause significant damage to your home and your health if not acted upon quickly.
If you suspect there is a clogged sewer drain in your home:
Turn off the water main, which will normally be located outside your house.
Call Plan B Plumbing – a licensed, experienced plumber – right away.
Plan B Plumbing Solutions
When it comes to plumbers, finding one you can really trust can be a stressful task. Based in South Oakleigh servicing Chadstone and surrounding suburbs, Plan B Plumbing Solutions are well known and trusted, already having made a name for themselves as an industry leader in the plumbing sector.
Offering a range of services, and a zero-dollar call out fee and free quotes, Plan B Plumbing Solutions are committed to getting the job done right. That’s why Plan B Plumbing Solutions should be your plan A when it comes to your plumbing needs.
Plumbing emergencies can strike at any time and can be a costly, time consuming and stressful experience. Sometimes even small plumbing repairs can create a major inconvenience, so it’s natural to want to rectify the issue for the cheapest price or even attempting to fix it yourself. The issue with DIY plumbing, however, is that by neglecting to utilise the skills and expertise of a plumber, you could end up causing further damage and costing yourself more in the long run.
An underground leak detection, for example, is a procedure that only plumber with the correct knowledge and equipment can undertake thoroughly to make sure an investigation leads to a solution. If a leak goes undetected for too long because a plumber was not engaged, the problem can become enormous. Without the sufficient expertise, an underground leak can cause masses of leak damage not only to your property, but potentially your neighbours’ properties, too, and it can also cost you money if there is an increase in your water bill. However, when you hire a plumber who is equipped with an underground leak detector and expert plumber knowledge in underground leak detection such as Plan B Plumbing, we can assess the area and locate the leak as quickly as possible to rectify the issue and prevent any further problems.
In Victoria, plumbers must be registered and/or licensed to carry out plumbing works. You may think you can undertake a quick plumbing repair by yourself at home, but the practical and theoretical knowledge plumbers have gained through their education, training and hands-on experience is invaluable and should not be underestimated.
What may seem to you like a small plumbing issue could actually be far greater than you realise, attempting to fix the plumbing issue by yourself may cause you much bigger issues down the road. By hiring a licensed plumber you will be provided with a high level of service and specialised knowledge to ensure the problem is fixed right the first time.
When you are looking for a local plumber in Oakleigh, take the safest option and ensure you hire a plumber like Plan B Plumbing. We are Licensed Plumbers who possess the specialist plumbing knowledge required to be able to provide the most appropriate plumbing solutions that will leave you with a long-lasting and cost-effective answer to your needs.
A leaking tap can waste up to 10,000 litres of water a year.
A constant trickle of water into the toilet bowl wastes around 9,000 litres a year.
If you suspect you have a leak and want to make sure, Plan B Plumbing has the latest technology and state of the art equipment to help you get to the bottom of it. Even the smallest of leaks can be detected. Plan B Plumbing Solutions have earned the reputation of being the best leak detection experts in Melbourne. We have a range of specialist equipment like thermal imaging technology, acoustic pipe location, tracer gas, and the Mini Snooper. If there is a leak, we’ll find it.
Leak detection can be a tricky task to do on your own. At a general level, you should look in the kitchen, laundry or bathrooms for dripping taps or leaking washing machines and dishwasher connections. Damp patches on the wall may also indicate a leak. You should regularly test your garden irrigation system for leaks, too. Irrigation systems can often use the most water in a household and leaks in these systems can be very costly.
CCTV Drain Inspection
Have you noticed cracks in your walls, or movement in the paths around your home? If you answered “yes”, then there may be an issue with your underground sewer or stormwater services. Plan B Plumbing Solutions offer full-colour drain camera CCTV inspections. Using a state of the art CCTV push camera system technology, we can locate blockages or structural defects within your stormwater and sewer drains. The drain camera allows for accurate diagnosis of your stormwater and sewer drains by locating cracks, breaks, tree root entry and other potential problems that can cost you significant money if left unattended. Plan B Plumbing is not just skilled at detecting any drainage issues, we are highly qualified and experienced with repairing them. Licensed and able to assess any drainage and sewerage systems, you don’t want to trust anybody else.
Plan B Plumbing Solutions specialises in assessing and reporting on roof leaks across all of Melbourne. Our qualified roof plumbers will assess your entire roof for defects and advise you on the outcome. There may be cracked tiles, blocked gutters, deteriorated silicon or mortar, issues with solar matting or solar panels, issues with your air conditioning units, and more. Plan B Plumbing will also tell you if your roof has been built to Australian Standards, ensuring your builders are kept honest. Some roofs may become difficult to reach with traditional methods due to their height or pitch, and, therefore, Plan B also offer roof inspections with the use of drone technology. With the use of our high-flying drones, our team can easily access, assess and diagnose your roofing problems safely and effectively. For any defects that are found affecting your roofing system, we will service all repairs from small inconsistencies to large full sheet replacements.
Plan B Plumbing Solutions
When it comes to plumbers, finding one you can really trust can be a stressful task. Based in South East Melbourne, Plan B Plumbing Solutions are well known and trusted, already having made a name for themselves as an industry leader in the plumbing sector.
Offering a range of services, and a zero-dollar call out fee and free quotes, Plan B Plumbing Solutions are committed to getting the job done right. That’s why Plan B Plumbing Solutions should be your plan A when it comes to your plumbing needs. We provide all clients with a comprehensive written report outlining the defects found and the repair strategies required to ensure the leaks are stopped.
At Plan B Plumbing Solutions, we offer a number of plumbing services, from infrared water leak detection, CCTV drain inspection, thermal imaging, and more. One area we specialise in is residential and commercial roof inspections across Melbourne. We conduct comprehensive roof inspections across Melbourne and service all repairs from small roof defects to large full sheet replacements.
Our qualified team of roof plumbers will assess the condition of the roof and provide you with a comprehensive written report that highlights any defects found. It will also outline the repair strategies required to ensure that the leaks are stopped.
In addition to our standard roof inspections, we also offer roof inspections with the use of drone technology. With the use of our high-flying drones, our team can easily access, assess and diagnose your roofing problems safely and effectively. Our state of the art drones makes roof inspections for properties above three stories or with a steep pitch easier, safer, faster and less costly. The drone can access almost any part of the building, and collect useful information using high-quality image and video. The drone transmits the data instantly to the inspection team on the ground or through the Cloud, allowing us to analyse the data and generate reports without putting anyone at risk.
Why Do You Need A Roof Inspection?
If you notice water damage within your home on the ceilings, around the cornices or dampness on the walls, skirting boards or carpet, a thorough roof inspection is required to ascertain the extent of any roof damage. A comprehensive roof inspection will include an interior and exterior evaluation of the roof’s structure. This includes assessing the roofs guttering systems and giving you advice on whether your roof has adequate drainage and meets Australian Standards. Our roof plumber will also examine the interior of the house including the ceilings and walls for any dampness or water leaks, as well as any roof and attic spaces for any internal evidence of wind, water or hail damage.
Thermal imaging and moisture meter readings form part of our standard testing procedure when assessing the interior of your home for any water damage. Most people assume their roof is well made and properly installed; but in reality, roofs are quite vulnerable as they are exposed to all the harsh elements of Melbourne’s unpredictable weather. It is also prudent to have your roof analysed and inspected, especially after heavy rain or violent storms. If you do notice any internal water damage, it is critical that you have an experienced Melbourne roof plumber carry out a roof inspection as soon as possible to prevent ongoing water damage to the interior ceiling or walls. Not doing so can result in more costly repairs in the long term.
A roof that is flawed in any manner has the potential to put you and your loved ones at risk. Furthermore, severe roof damage can result in costly repairs or even a full roof replacement that decimates your finances. The solution is to be proactive with regular professional roof inspections with Plan B Plumbing Solutions.
Plan B Gives People Knowledge About Roof Inspections
A bit about us: Plan B Plumbing Solutions was co-founded by Anthony & Emily Hunter in 2014. Anthony is a Licensed Master Plumber with over twenty-three years of experience in the plumbing industry. Emily has more than twenty-five years’ experience in administration, marketing and customer service. We understand the importance of superior customer service and quality workmanship at all times. Our team consists of four full-time plumbers, an apprentice and two full-time administration staff in the office which means there is always someone available take your queries and answer any concerns you may have regarding your plumbing needs.
At Plan B Plumbing Solutions, we aim to educate our customers to fully understand their roof structure, its condition, and any immediate or potential problem areas – and locate exactly where any damage may have occurred. When it comes to roof inspections, unfortunately not many homeowners put it on their priority list. We often take roofs for granted, until there’s a leak of course.
Typically, tiled roofs last for 30 years. That life span can be cut short drastically if early water damage signs aren’t noticed early enough or are ignored. Your roof is the first line of defence for your home, protecting your home from weather damage. Sun, wind, rain, hail, lichen, trees and so on will lead to roof deterioration over time. Quality of materials and installation is an important factor as well.
Regular roof inspections will ensure that the roof is taken care of properly and early damage is dealt with swiftly, allowing you to repair small problems now rather than having to replace a neglected roof entirely later. We often suggest to our customers to have their roofs inspected twice annually and Plan B Plumbing Solutions is a leader in the industry for roof inspections. When choosing an experienced and qualified roofing plumbing company in Melbourne – with great customer reviews – think Plan B Plumbing Solutions; you won’t be disappointed.