Anthony Expert Advice

boy drinking water

Unfiltered water?  You’ve got that covered with your reverse osmosis (RO) system with the expensive filters that you have to change, and the mineral drops that you add back into the water, ugh.  Hard water?  You’ve got that covered with your water softener and its heavy and expensive bags of salt, yikes.  Stop!  These are old technology.

New Catalytic Water Conditioning Technology Removes Hardness without Removing Minerals

There is now an easier and healthier way to take the hardness and contaminants out of the water in every faucet and appliance in your home, with a whole home water conditioning plus filtration system.  Water conditioning softens your water not by removing the minerals that your body needs, but by changing their molecular structure through catalytic treatment.  This new catalytic treatment technology requires no maintenance, no electricity, no bags of salt and no expenses, and can be installed in your home quickly.

Water Conditioning plus Non-RO Filtration Makes the Healthiest Drinking Water

Water conditioning alone does not filter contaminants out of your water.  That is where whole home water conditioning plus water filtration systems come in.  Unlike RO systems that filter only the water that comes to your sink or refrigerator, whole home water filtration filters all of your home’s water, including the water you shower in and spray on your vegetable garden.  And unlike RO systems, they leave in the important minerals that your body needs.  While whole home RO systems do exist, they are expensive to maintain and waste a lot of water.

Catalytic Water Conditioning Plus Filtration offers Many Benefits over Reverse Osmosis

The NaturalSof water conditioner plus filtration system is a great example of a water conditioning plus water filtration system that installs easily at your home’s water source and softens and filters your water all in one.  It also offers the following benefits over water softening and RO:

  • requires no maintenance, no salt, no filter replacement
  • requires no electricity like traditional water softeners do
  • doesn’t leave your hands feeling oily or soapy like traditional water softening
  • removes the hardness from water without removing the health benefit of the minerals
  • filters all of your home’s water, not just the water going to your RO tap
  • wastes no water
  • adds no sodium to your water

The NaturalSof 6L removes the following contaminants from your drinking water:

  • chlorine
  • ammonia
  • sediment
  • chloramines
  • chemicals
  • disinfectant byproducts
  • metals
  • trace pharmaceuticals
  • bacteria

Removing Hard Water Keeps Your Plumbing and Appliances Healthy

We all know that water filtration is important for the water you drink.  But did you know that removing the hardness from your water is just as important to your home and appliances?  The mineral scale build up from hard water does damage to your home in the following ways:

  • clogs your home’s plumbing and appliances like dishwashers and washing machines
  • leaves scale on heating elements in tankless water heaters, coffee pots and vaporizers
  • increases maintenance needed on whole home and stand-alone humidifiers
  • damages and clogs plumping fixtures
  • leaves spots on shower doors and glassware
  • causes you to use more detergent and soap

No home or family should be without a whole home water conditioning system and a drinking water filtration strategy.  Traditional water softeners and RO systems are still right for some, but there are many options available to suit the needs of every home and family’s particular needs.  Call our plumbing experts at Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling today to analyze your options at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO.

 

 

 

 

 

 

hvac zoning for hot and cold roomsMaestro HVAC Zoning Solves Your Home’s Hot Zones and Cold Zones

You have 2 or more thermostats in your car, so why should you be content with only 1 thermostat in your home?  If you want it warmer in some areas of your home and cooler in others, then an HVAC zoning system is for you.  Or if you have rooms that are always too hot or too cold compared to the rest of your home and you want to even out the temperatures, you also can benefit from an HVAC zoning system.

Most homes have areas that suffer because a single thermostat located in one area controls the temperature in all parts of the home. The thermostat only knows the temperature where the thermostat is actually located. You simply cannot achieve whole home comfort with one thermostat, just like you can’t control all your lighting with one light switch.  Our Maestro Zoning system lets you control the temperature in all areas of your home by allowing you to send conditioned air when and where it is needed.  You will feel more air than you have ever felt before out of your system.

Maestro Zoning Allows You to Control Which Rooms Get Cooled and Heated Air

An HVAC zoning system consists of 2 or more thermostats placed in problem areas in your home, and an electronic monitor which activates dampers in your ductwork to move conditioned air directly to those rooms where a greater supply is needed.  Anthony’s Maestro Zoning system can be installed quickly and easily in your home, to make every room a Goldilocks room, that is “just right” temperature wise.

By giving homeowners more control over how they heat and cool their home, Maestro Zoning enables the creation of comfort zones that are customizable, which keeps all family members happy while saving money on energy bills at the same time, by sending conditioned air only to the zones that need it and only when they need it.

How Zoning Works

Zoning is a simple, economical way to gain better air flow to problem areas without adding an additional heating and cooling system. Using automatic dampers (which are pneumatically activated so there are no motors that eventually fail) in your vent work, a zoning system allows you to control the temperature independently in separate areas of your home by opening some dampers and closing others.

The brain of the zoning system is an electronic monitor which activates the dampers as ordered by the individual thermostats in the areas served.  It can even be used with wireless thermostats that can be carried from room to room to ensure the desired temperature in that room.  You can also control thermostats with your cell phone.

Maestro Zoning is Right for Any House

Zoning is all about the comfort of the homeowner, and any home can benefit from zoning if the homeowner wants more control over the temperature in different areas of their home.  Homes with hard to cool or hard to heat areas, or with multiple levels that require more than one thermostat are perfect for zoning. These include homes with:

  • multiple levels, like two stories or split levels
  • rooms over the garage or added onto the back
  • finished areas in the basement or attic
  • expansive glass areas that let in ambient heat
  • family members who prefer different temperatures than others
  • home offices
  • portions of the home built over a concrete slab floor
  • wings extending off the main living area in multiple directions
  • large, open areas such as vaulted ceilings or lofts

Zoning Beats the Heat in Two Story Homes or Bedrooms over the Garage

Since a thermostat only knows the temperature of the area it’s located in, your home can suffer from stark temperature variances in different rooms.  Because thermostats are normally located on a home’s first level, rooms on upper levels can be unbearably hot because of the “stack effect” of warm air rising.  Also, second floor areas have more heat gain because the ceiling is the hot attic. And if you are the unlucky one who’s bedroom is over the garage, you know that no matter how much the AC is cranked in the house your room is always hot in the summer.  Rooms over garages are always cold in the winter, too.

Maestro Zoning is a great option for homes with these configurations.  Rather than install window units in your upstairs bedrooms or keep your lower levels uncomfortably cool in an attempt to accommodate the upper levels, zoning has become a must-have solution for any two-story home.

Zoning Eliminates Arguments Over Temperature

No more arguments over temperature in the house – with Maestro Zoning you have control of the temperature in your room, and your family members have control over theirs.  The dampers in the ductwork are activated by the electronic monitor depending on the set temperature from individual thermostats in the areas served.  These dampers allow cooled air to be sent into warmer rooms while restricting air flow to other rooms.  Since each room, or “zone” has a different thermostat, one person can enjoy a warmer room while another luxuriates in their own much cooler zone.

Call our Maestro Zoning Experts for a Free Estimate

Call our Maestro Zoning experts today for a free estimate, and we will come to your house and explore the many options available to customize a zoning system to meet your needs. Call us at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO or click here to submit your information and we will contact you at a time that is convenient for you.

frozen AC coilWhen your central AC blows hot air, it often means you have a frozen coil.  Frozen may sound like a good problem for an AC to have, but your system cannot cool your home if the coil is iced over.

It is important to know that AC technicians cannot fix your frozen coil problem until the coil thaws.  So if your AC is not producing cold air, take these steps before you call your technician:

 

1.  Check your filter

A dirty filter could be the only issue preventing your AC from cooling your air, and that is an easy fix. Turn off your furnace fan by turning your system to OFF on your thermostat.  Locate your return vent, unscrew the cover (if any), and pull out your filter. If it’s dirty, simply replace it. Write down the size indicated on the edge of the filter, and purchase a new one at a home improvement store.  With your system still OFF, pull out the dirty filter, paying attention to which way the air flow arrow points on the edge of the filter, and put the new filter in facing the same direction.

2. Thaw out your AC

If your filter is not dirty, try thawing out your AC coil.  First, switch your thermostat to OFF and your fan to ON. This will start defrosting your coil, which is located inside the air handling unit next to your furnace.  Call an expert technician from a reputable heating and cooling company and set up an appointment to have them come look at your AC unit after the coil thaws.  Give your unit a few hours to fully defrost, and head to a movie theater or restaurant to stay cool.

To see if your coil is thawed, locate your air handler and the frozen coil.  Check the condensate pan underneath the coil to make sure it is draining properly, and not leaking and causing damage to your floor.

3. Turn your AC back on

After a few hours, check your coil.  It should be dry and free of frost or ice.  Switch your thermostat back to “cool” to turn your AC back on. If the air comes out cooler than room temperature, you have fixed your AC problem!  If not, it is now ready for your technician to make any necessary repairs.  Even if your AC is working again, it is good to have your technician inspect the system, as a frozen coil usually a sign that something is wrong.

Don’t be stuck with a non-functioning AC system on a hot day when the demand for technicians is high, and the wait for service is long.  Get your checked annually, before trouble starts. Call Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO, (913-268-4669), or click here to schedule a service call.

anthony technicianpara Español,haga clic aquíAir-conditioning systems are one of those appliances you rarely think about until something goes wrong. And if you’re caught without AC in the middle of summer when HVAC technicians are at their busiest, you could face some miserable days of heat at home.

Fortunately, there are some telltale signs homeowners can usually identify before an AC system breaks down completely. Are you seeing any of the following? Better get your air conditioner replaced sooner than later.

1. Your AC is more than 10 years old

Air conditioners wear out just like any other household appliance. A well-maintained AC system will last 10 to 15 years, according to the National Association of Home Builders.

However, systems that have not been maintained over their lifespan will not last the full 10 years. Steve Burbridge, owner of Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling, recommends having a tune-up by a professional HVAC technician to keep your system in good working order. The technician can inspect the unit’s components, identify and fix any issues and clean the indoor and outdoor coils.

2. Your energy bills are rising

Before you blame global warming for your rising energy costs, consider whether your high energy bills could be the result of faulty, failing or inefficient machinery. An AC system that is working inefficiently will run more frequently, using up more electricity while not adequately cooling your house.

Many utility companies provide comparison charts of how your bill has changed month over month and year over year. They also often provide an average temperature for each day of the month, information that can help you identify whether higher utility costs are associated with outdoor temperature or something else.

Newer cooling systems will also tend to be more energy-efficient than older models. Investing in an energy-efficient system could provide you dividends in the long run.

3. Your system uses ozone-depleting refrigerant (R22)

In 2020, the ozone-depleting refrigerant R22 will no longer be manufactured. Used as a coolant for air conditioners beginning with the first models produced in the 1950s, R22 has been found by researchers to be contributing to the thinning of the earth’s ozone.

Burbridge recommends homeowners have an HVAC technician inspect their system to determine what kind of refrigerant it uses. More recently produced models use ozone-friendly refrigerant, such as 410A.

“If their system uses ozone-depleting refrigerant and it needs any repairs, it doesn’t make sense to invest any money in it,” Burbridge said.

4. Repeat breakdowns

repair costs vs age of acWhether your AC system has reached the end of its lifespan or not, having multiple serious repair jobs in a row could indicate it is near wearing out. Recall that systems last only as long as they’re maintained well, and some simply don’t last as long as others. If you’ve already fixed one issue and more are popping up, it might be best to cut your losses and replace.

Older air conditioners will also have more aesthetic issues. “Rust is a major problem, along with being noisier than newer models,” Burbridge said. “People with air conditioners that are near windows or backyard patios could benefit from the newer and quieter AC units built today.”

For more information on how to recognize when your cooling system needs replacing, contact Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling in the Kansas City area today.  Call us at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO.

 

ecm fan motor being added to furnaceAfter July 3, 2019, residential furnace manufacturers must include energy-efficient electronically commutated low-wattage motors (ECM’s) on their furnace fans, instead of the permanent split capacitor (PSC) induction blower motors normally used.

The Department of Energy (DOE) has updated their Furnace Efficiency Rating (FER) standards, mandating that these energy conserving motors be used starting July 3, 2019 in all new furnaces, with the expectation that these new standards will result in significant conservation of energy and reduction of carbon pollution.

For homeowners, this means the initial price of residential furnaces will be increasing due to the higher cost of the ECM motors.  But though the initial cost for a new furnace will be going up, the DOE estimates these motors will save an average consumer about $340 to $500 over the lifetime of their furnace, even after accounting for the increased upfront cost, due to significant savings in energy costs.

ecm high efficiency motorECM motors are expected to keep homeowners more comfortable, too.  First, they provide more efficient airflow. Second, they reduce temperature swings in the home by allowing the fan to run for a longer time at a reduced speed.  And homeowners will be more inclined to operate their furnace fans all the time, therefore cleaning the air consistently.

The net effect on the homeowner’s energy usage by the ECM motors may be reduced by as much as 46%, which depending on the home and the furnace model, could result in as much as $67.00 per year in energy savings.

Although the old furnaces with PSC induction motors may still be in stock for a short time after July 3, they will only be available while supplies last.  Some homeowners may opt for repairing an old furnace, but it can be a costly decision when compared to the energy savings of replacing it with an energy efficient furnace.  The question then is, “how expensive does a furnace repair need to be before it’s not worth it?” Even for less expensive repairs, depending upon how old your furnace is, replacement may be a more cost-effective option.

To help you make the best choice possible, Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling will help you assess when and if you should replace your furnace.  Call us at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO.

The Clock is Ticking – What’s Your Plan?

r22 phase outIf your AC uses the refrigerant known as R-22, it is time to plan your replacement strategy.  If you have to add refrigerant to your AC unit, then your time may be up this year.

Because of Environmental Protection Agency concerns about R-22 effects on the ozone, it will not be produced after January 1, 2020, and the only way to acquire it will be through recycled or stockpiled supplies which will be prohibitively expensive to purchase.  The price of R-22 has been increasing steadily over the last few years already, which has made R-22 AC systems too expensive to continue to run, making replacement the more affordable option.

The last AC units using R-22 were manufactured in 2010.  So if your AC unit is one of these, it is already old enough to consider replacement.  If your AC uses R-22 refrigerant and you’ve had to add refrigerant recently, then it is time to replace your AC system.  Refrigerant doesn’t get used up – the only time you have to add refrigerant is if you have a leak.  And if you have a leak, you will have to add more and more refrigerant each year.

Refrigerant leaks happen to all units eventually as they age.  Refrigerant circulates under high pressure and therefore wears down and thins the inside of the tubing. Because AC units last only 10 – 15 years on average, it is time for your R-22 unit to be replaced, especially if it is leaking refrigerant.

How Do I Know if my AC Unit uses R-22?

Steve Burbridge, owner of Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling, recommends homeowners have an HVAC technician inspect their system to determine what kind of refrigerant it uses. Age of the system is one determinant – no R-22 units were manufactured after 2010.  But R-410A units have been manufactured since 1996, so just because your unit is old it doesn’t mean that it uses R-22.

r22 to r401a

Can I Wait One More Year?

Making a choice to wait will also put you in the same boat as all of the others who are waiting until the last minute, and prices for new AC systems go up when demand is high.  And even if you are lucky enough to get a reasonably-priced replacement unit, the wait for available technicians to install it might be long.  And the last thing you want to do is be faced with weeks without air conditioning during the summer heat.

What if I Can’t Afford to Replace Right Now?

Replacing a central AC unit can cost thousands of dollars, more than many of us have saved up.  This is where financing comes in.  Fortunately, there is financing available for just about any credit score.  Click here to review the many financing options available through Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling:  https://www.anthonyphc.com/financing/.

Rebates from energy companies can also help financially.  KCPL offers rebates when you purchase energy-efficient AC systems installed by authorized contractors like Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling.  For more information on rebate programs, call our us at Anthony or click here:  https://www.kcpl.com/save-energy-and-money/home/rebates/heating-and-cooling.

The one bright side to incurring an extra monthly expense through financing is the reduction of energy costs that you will receive when a new unit is doing the cooling, which will help offset this expense.  New AC units outperform old units significantly, no matter what their Energy Star rating is.  And you will no longer have costly repair bills to pay either.

Have questions on R-22 refrigerant, AC system replacement?  Call our knowledgeable experts night or day at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO, or submit this form to request an estimate:  https://www.anthonyphc.com/schedule-estimate/.

Can air conditioners spread allergens?

The answer is yes, they can. If not cleaned and properly maintained, they can put allergens into the air which contribute to a myriad of health issues namely those dealing with respiration such as allergies and asthma.

A dirty air conditioner filter prevents cool air from flowing. It takes trapped dirt, dust, dander, and pollen and distributes it throughout a room. People who spend time in the space breathe in the air and develop allergies in the process. Investing in regular AC cleaning prevents that problem from occurring.

It prevents the spreading of pollutants throughout the home. It does not, however, eliminate them. In order to do that, you must first identify the source of the problem and do your part to get rid of it before it worsens. The next section addresses the top in-home allergens so you can determine if they’re what is causing you or a family member’s allergies to worsen.

 

The Top In-Home Allergens

To better understand what you’re up against, it’s important to know what causes allergens to build up inside the home. Among the biggest culprit is a dirty air conditioner filter which is easily taken care of with AC cleaning. Replacing the filter every few weeks is highly recommended with the frequency increasing in homes with pets.

Other allergens that cause concern include:

 

  • Cigarette Smoke. Second-hand smoke can cause respiratory problems in children and adults. It can also be problematic for pets. Asking that all smokers take their cigarettes and vape pens outdoors to smoke keeps the nicotine out of the home and lungs of the residence’s occupants. Most people have no issue smoking or vaping outdoors especially if the person they are visiting requests that they do so.
  • Dust Mites. The parasites live in linens and gather on clothing and toys that sit untouched for a while. The best way to deal with them is to clean and vacuum the home regularly. It’s impossible to get rid of them completely but you can reduce the problems caused by the dust mites significantly by dusting, vacuuming, and washing sheets, pillowcases, and blankets frequently. Creating a weekly cleaning schedule for yourself helps you take care of all the potentially problematic areas inside the home.
  • Mold. Using a dehumidifier inside the home helps reduce instances of mold. When it’s warm, dark, and damp in a room, spores appear. Hiring a professional to tackle a mold problem before it worsens is imperative. Mold is the type of problem that can get a home condemned if it gets bad enough.
  • Pollen. Ensuring that your doors and windows have screens on them is one way to keep pollen out. Keeping your AC unit’s filter clean at all times does, too. Investing in the right size of filter for the make and model of air conditioner that you have makes it easier to trap pollutants and keep them from entering your home, nostrils, and mouth while you breathe.
  • Pet Dander. Like dust mites, you can’t avoid a pet that sheds. If your dog or cat has long hair, make sure to brush them outdoors regularly. You’ll also want to sweep, dust, and vacuum on a routine basis. Cleaning the pet’s bedding also helps eliminate traces of hair and dander which cause a lot of people’s allergies to kick in.
  • Toxic Chemical Cleaning Supplies. Switching to all-natural, organic cleaning products eliminates the level of toxicity inside the home. Individuals with chemical sensitivities notice a distinct difference in how they feel and breathe once commercial cleaners are banned from the residence. Common kitchen ingredients such as baking soda and vinegar are often used in many DIY cleaning recipes. They’re all-natural and not something that aggravates or creates allergies for people.

An indoor air quality test allows you to better understand what could be triggering you or your family member’s allergies. It makes it easier to eliminate the source of the problem by repairing a broken AC unit. AC repair makes the unit work more efficiently at eliminating the issue of indoor allergens.

 

Making sure that your air conditioner isn’t doing more harm than good is your responsibility. By learning what to do to keep your unit working optimally, you eliminate many of the problems caused by pollutants inside the home. You also protect your investment by keeping your AC in good working order so you can continue to use it for years without replacing it.

 

What You Can Do to Keep Your AC Running Well 

There are things you can do to keep your AC in good working order. The first is to not put off AC repair. If you know that your air conditioner isn’t doing its job, it’s time to call in a professional. The fix could be as simple as air duct cleaning.

Staying on top of routine maintenance prevents your air conditioner from freezing up and running up your home energy bills. An AC can run non-stop, not put out cool air, cause an electric bill to skyrocket, and burn out its motor rendering the unit useless.

 

That’s why you should take a look at the unit routinely, remove anything blocking its air flow, switch out its filter, and have a technician service it before using it full-time in the hotter months of the year. You’re able to prolong the lifespan of the AC that way and keep yourself from paying exorbitant costs to the electric company.

 

What AC Maintenance Entails

 

If you’re unsure of what hiring a professional to perform maintenance on your air conditioning unit entails, don’t worry. Anyone who hasn’t had the experience of working with an expert isn’t sure what to expect. A company such as Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling puts your mind to ease right away by remaining communicative throughout the maintenance process.

 

Before an air conditioner is turned on for the first time for the season, a technician comes out and takes a look at the unit. They remove the air filter and replace it with a new one. They check coolant levels to make sure they are adequate enough to cool your size of home for the duration of the summer.

 

The tech turns the air conditioner on to make sure that it gets to the desired temperature right away. They also note any strange sounds the AC makes or smells that come out of the unit. If a repair must be done to get the air conditioner back in good working order, the professional does it on the spot as long as they have the replacement part in stock.

 

Addressing common furnace problems is something else that we do in addition to repairing a broken AC unit and performing routine AC maintenance. Having a company you can trust to take care of your air conditioning and heating needs is essential as a homeowner. It ensures that your home remains a comfortable temperature year-round.

 

Contact Us to Schedule AC Unit Cleaning Today

It is highly recommended to contact Anthony Heating and Cooling to set up a time for AC unit check and cleaning. Doing so helps you remove existing allergens from the home and prevent future problems from occurring.  Contact us today at 913-268-4669.

When it comes to water, the notion is plain and clear; we need it to survive. Many times individuals who own properties will notice their utility bills inflate to an absurd amount; if this is the case, then it is wise to investigate the instance further as this could indicate a plumbing issue that needs quick attention.

 

The longer people wait to get their plumbing pipes checked, the more damage could occur costing possible tens of thousands of dollars to fix.

 

Don’t wait until this happens to you and call Anthony PHC before you become the problem- why the world’s water is being wasted.

 

Before you end up with a water wasting scenario and habit, our experts at Anthony PHC Kansas City highly recommend that you watch out for the following signs discussed in this article; and remember to always preserve your pipes, drains, and faucets. Be cognizant and save water every moment you get.

Faucet Plumbing Drips

 

A never-ending drip that slowly leaks from your pipes is a reason to have your plumbing system looked at.

 

If you experience a faucet dripping at a slow rate, this could mean that you need the components inside of the unit replaced.

 

If you don’t get this looked at, you could be wasting hundreds of gallons of water per year.

 

Plumbing Cracks

 

Do you see signs of cracks that lie around your porcelain toilet, tub, or sink?

 

If you’ve answered, yes, then you will need to call the plumbing experts at Anthony PHC Kansas City and inform us about this problem, before the cracking worsens.

 

Water can slowly leak through the cracks and can sometimes go unnoticed; you’ll have to take a closer look to see if this is causing your water wasting issue.

Plumbing Fungi

Of course, your bathroom is a humid and wet area, especially after you relish in a hot and relaxing shower.

 

Look around, if you notice any green or black fuzziness or sludge around your pipes, drains, or faucets then you will need to contact plumbing experts who can eradicate the mold or fungi.

 

Living with this type of problem could eventually cause pipe deterioration and contamination; you and whoever else resides in the building could be exposed to potential health risks.

 

When fungi is in and around your plumbing system, this wastes water for the mere fact that mold and fungi could be contaminating water supplies; in turn, causing health ailments galore.

 

Stop wasting water and minimize medical bills. If you see black sludge anywhere near your plumbing system, it is best if you call an expert immediately.

Plumbing Water Discoloration

If your water is exerting a strange color then throw in the towel and get expert advice from a certified, insured, and experienced plumber in Kansas City.

 

Your water should be clear and shouldn’t have a strange color or smell. If it does and has particles or rock sediments in it, you will need to call the pros at Anthony PHC Kansas City as this is another plumbing problem and water is being wasted.

If you notice any of the signs above, keep in mind, the longer you wait, the higher the chances you may ingest water not appropriate for consumption.

Click here to learn more about how you can preserve water and stop wasting and destroying our world’s water resources through ongoing and unnoticed neglect.

sewer camera

Where Does your Responsibility End, and the Local Water Authority’s Begin?  Your Plumber Must Determine

Maintenance of your sewer main is shared by you and your local water authority.  If a back up occurs on your part of the sewer main, or “on-property,” it is your responsibility to fix it and to pay for it.  If it happens on your local water authority’s part of the system, or “off-property,” it is their responsibility to fix it and to pay for it.

It is up to the homeowner’s plumber to make the determination on whose part of the sewer main the back up is located and to let the local water authority know if there is a problem with their part of the sewer system.  So it is important to make sure you hire a plumber who specializes in diagnosing sewer backups.

How Can You Tell if Your Back Up is “On-Property” or “Off-Property?”

The place where your responsibility ends and the local water authority’s begins is in your lateral sewer main.  The lateral is the sewer main that runs from your house and connects to the local water authority’s sewer main.

Every home on your block has a lateral sewer main that connects to the sewer main of the local water authority, which is also called a sewer main, so differentiating between the two in conversation can be confusing.

So at what spot in your lateral sewer main does your responsibility ends and the local authority’s responsibility begin?  It is different in every home, and it is up to your plumber to determine whose portion of the lateral main the back up resides on, yours or the local water authority’s.  That is why it is important to choose a plumber who specializes in diagnosing sewer backups.

A Sewer Back Up is an Expensive Problem, Unless it is Not Your Problem…

Your plumber should be able to tell you which main is affected, your lateral main or the local authority’s sewer main.  And if the back up is in the lateral main, your plumber needs to be able to tell you if the back up is in the “on-property” portion of the lateral, or in the “off-property” portion.

Your local water authority relies on the plumbers hired by homeowners to let them know when there are off-property backups so they can send the proper teams out to correct the problems.

Camera and Diagnostic Equipment are Critical to Determine where the Back Up is Located

Luckily Anthony’s plumbers have cameras to make the job of diagnosing and repairing sewer backups easier.  If your plumber finds that your back up is off-property, they will be able to take pictures to prove where the blockage is.  These cameras also have receivers and digital location systems which identify the location and depth of pipes.

In some cases, it may cost extra for a plumber to use this diagnostic equipment, but it is well worth the money for homeowners if it can determine that backups are off-property.  Cameras allow plumbers to make better and faster repairs to your pipes which can also save you money in labor.

They can quickly tell you where the blockage is, and determine if there are sewer pipe repairs are needed as well, and where, to minimize digging.

The Benefits of Opening vs. Cleaning

There is a difference between opening a sewer main to temporarily resolve a backup, and cleaning a sewer main completely, especially in price.  Many plumbers will advise homeowners to opt for opening a pipe, which involves punching a hole in the back up with a snake, leaving only a partial opening, rather than completely cleaning the pipe.

It is much easier and more affordable to open a pipe than clean it out completely, and homeowners appreciate the cost savings.  To avoid the need for repeated drain openings and to provide a more permanent fix, a sewer main needs to be thoroughly cleaned, not just opened.

When Your Plumber Fixes Off-Property Back Ups, They Need to Tell the Local Water Authority

If your plumber determines that your back up is “off-property,” they will still fix the back up for you and have the local water authority reimburse you for the work.  Even if your plumber is able to correct a back up that is off-property, the local water authority still wants to be informed by your plumber so they can keep an eye on it and make further repairs if necessary.

A sewer main backup can cause devastating damage to multiple homeowners if left unchecked, even so as to require a house to be condemned if waste backs up and ruins electrical and HVAC equipment.  Water levels can rise quickly during a sewer main break before there is time to intercede.  So the role of the plumber in diagnosing and reporting sewer main problems is a critical one.

How Do I Know if My Back Up is in the Sewer Main Lateral or Just the Floor Drain?

Sewer main backups require much heavier snakes to open your 3 to 4 inch lateral than snakes that can negotiate a 2-inch branch line to your floor drain, so it is important to know where your back up resides, so you can call the right plumber.  The easiest test is to check to see if toilet paper or human waste is present in the standing water.  If no waste is present, have a spotter watch the floor drain while you run cold water into a bathtub somewhere else in the house for several minutes.

If the spotter never sees any water rise, then the back up is in the floor drain.  If water does rise, then the back up is in the sewer main lateral or local authority’s sewer main.  Sometimes sewer main backups can cause water to back up in your toilet or bathtub instead of your floor drain, even though the floor drain is lower.

How Do You Clear a Back Up in the Lateral Sewer Main?

You can never clear a lateral sewer main back up through the floor drain, so if the plumber you call attempts to do so you have not chosen the right plumber.  Lateral backups can only be cleared through your home’s main inside clean out which is located on the lower level and capped by a screw on plug.

Occasionally homeowners make the mistake covering up access to clean outs during remodeling; if that is the case, laterals backups must be cleared by removing a toilet and snaking from there.  If worst comes to worst a lateral back up can also be cleared from the stack which extends above the roof where the sewer gases escape, but the cost of hoisting equipment to the roof can be great.

Choose Wisely, and Seek Professional Advice

Sewer backups put your life on hold, but don’t get in a hurry and hire the first plumber available or the cheapest one you can find.  Be patient and qualify plumbers carefully; you will save a lot of money and time and aggravation.  Call us at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO and we will help you through this process.  For more information on fixing and preventing different drain issues, click here to read our blog on “Easing Drain Pain.

 

Efficient air conditioners can seem like a luxury in the hot, scorching summers of Kansas City.

Keep enjoying a cool home and ensure your unit is well maintained by getting the necessary repairs before the hot weather hits. Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling in Kansas City, MO, provide reliable heating and cooling services to homeowners and businesses in KC.

Our licensed and certified technicians have years of expertise in AC repair or replacement using modern equipment and tools to get the job done to your satisfaction. More importantly, knowing how your air conditioning unit works helps you to determine when it needs maintenance, repair, or replacement.

What is an Air Conditioner?

An air conditioner is a system of equipment that converts warm air into cool air and distributes or circulates it throughout the rooms in your home or office; this is done using energy or electricity and the processes of refrigeration, evaporation and condensation. The amount of energy needed to do this depends on the brand or model of the unit.

Older units typically use more energy to cool the same square footage of space compared to the newer models. The high-efficiency units we install use far less energy to provide cool air, saving you a ton of money in the long run. You can get one installed if your current unit has been costing you too much money to repair or has stopped working.

Types of Air Conditioning Systems

There are generally two different types of AC systems. They are room air conditioners and central air conditioners. Then there is the ductless, mini-split unit which is a hybrid air conditioner. Central AC units can be a split system or packaged unit but they both work similarly and function efficiently to provide cool air.

Split-System Central Air Conditioner

The main parts of the split-system central air conditioner are the outdoor unit, the indoor unit, and the thermostat to control the temperature. The outdoor unit or cabinet contains the compressor, fan, condenser coil, and electrical parts. The indoor unit cabinet houses the evaporator and evaporator coil and may also contain a furnace. Otherwise, the coil is installed at the top of the gas furnace in the home.

The outdoor and indoor units are connected by pipes and the refrigeration lines that contain a gas called the refrigerant. When installing the AC system, ducts are placed throughout the home and function as air tunnels. Finally, a thermostat is installed, usually on the wall in one of the rooms. It is used to set the room temperature as desired.

Packaged Central Air Conditioner

With the packaged central air conditioner, the compressor, condenser, and evaporator are all housed in one unit. It also usually contains a natural gas furnace or electric heating coils. The cabinet may be placed on a concrete slab outside the home or business or on the roof. The ducts are placed through openings in the roof or exterior walls of the building and then connected to the unit. With the furnace or heating coils and the evaporator, this type of AC unit removes the need for an indoor furnace. It also saves on indoor living space.

How Air Conditioners Work to Provide Cool Air

Air conditioners are installed in three-quarters of all homes in the US, yet many people do not know how this important piece of cooling equipment works. The science behind how it works is generally the same but there may be unique differences depending on the type of unit installed.

The refrigeration lines built into the unit are largely responsible for the cycle of cool air that comes through the unit. But each component of the system provides a special function that helps cool the air.

The Cooling Cycle

The refrigerant flows through the refrigeration lines between the indoor and outdoor units of the central AC system. When the AC is turned on, the fan in the outdoor unit will spin and pull warm air from inside the home through the vent and into the ductwork.

The gas refrigerant is vaporized or compressed by the compressor and pumped onto the condenser coil in the outdoor unit, then released to the evaporator coil in the indoor cabinet.

The evaporator coil absorbs the heat in the air and cools it. The cool air flows through the connected ducts and escapes through the vents connected to the HVAC system. This refrigeration cycle continues over and over to lower the temperature and cool the room to match the setting on the thermostat.

Common Air Conditioner Problems

The last thing you want to happen during the hot summer days is for your window, room, or central AC unit to malfunction or stop blowing cool air. Some of the most common problems with these cooling units our technicians have seen and fixed are:

  • Clogged filter
  • Thermostat isn’t working
  • Leaking refrigerant
  • Burnt out capacitors
  • Dirty condenser coils
  • Compressor not working
  • Refrigerant needs refilling
  • Problems with the breakers or fuse
  • Filthy or clogged condensate drain lines
  • Worn out fins

When to Get Air Conditioner Repairs in Kansas City

Other times, the problems are an indication that the system needs maintenance or repairs. Your unit may need repairs if any of these problems are present:

  • Leaking refrigerant
  • The unit blows hot air
  • Increase in humidity in the rooms
  • Noisy unit, e.g., loud grinding, grating, or squealing sounds
  • Pungent, musty, or burnt smell coming from the unit

Skip the DIY and Call the Air Conditioner Repair Experts

The heating and cooling system installed in your home or office are complex. If an AC problem occurs, you may be tempted to try and fix them yourself; however, to avoid causing any damage to the system, it is best to call in the air conditioner repair professionals at Anthonys PHC.

They are available 24/7 to ensure you remain in cool comfort. Having years of expertise diagnosing problems in various types of AC systems, our experts can easily identify what’s causing the problem and recommend repairs if needed. Armed with state-of-the-art tools and equipment, they’ll get your unit working again in no time!

When to Replace Your Air Conditioning Unit

There are times when the only economical thing to do is to replace your AC or cooling system. If any of the following applies you, it may be time to upgrade to a new, energy-efficient air conditioner installed by Anthonys PHC:

  • The unit is old (10-15 years)
  • It stops working efficiently
  • Frequent and expensive repairs
  • Energy bills keep rising
  • It’s not the right size for your home

Call to make an appointment for AC repair or replacement in Kansas City

If you’re experiencing one or more of the common AC problems, call the AC repair professionals at Anthonys PHC in Kansas City, MO. We provide HVAC services to satisfy the heating and cooling needs of customers in KC. Our technicians are skilled in servicing and repairing various types of cooling units and will run a complete diagnosis to determine the problem.

We can also replace your unit if it’s broken, reached the end of its lifespan, or you simply want to upgrade to central air. We install all major brands of air conditioners capable of maintaining inside when it’s 100° outside. Plus we’re on call 24/7 and for emergency services. Call 913-353-8444 or 816-407-8444 today! Ask about the 2-year money-back guarantee policy on our air conditioners.

Before we get started mentioning the plenty of problems your plumbing system may encounter with time and use, it is important to note that at Anthony PHC Kansas City, safety is very important to us.

Of course, there are many things you can do to maintain and check-up on your plumbing system, but if you do not know what you are doing or have a question, don’t hesitate to ask an expert at Anthony PHC.

Drip, Drip

Faucets aren’t meant to drip unless you have them turned on, if your faucet is, you could have an issue. Not only will your water bill and your bank account suffer from non-stop dripping faucets, but you will be wasting a lot of water every day; let’s face it, water shortages in 2019 are not unheard of.

Tip # 1

Help preserve our resources. If there is a drip, be sure to try and turn the faucets off all of the way; ensure they are tightly closed. If this does not work, then you may want to call a plumbing professional from Anthony PHC Kansas City because this problem may point to an internal issue.

Water Heater Problems

Are you dreaming of taking a warm shower? Perhaps you turn on your shower and only cold water exits…

Tip # 2

This could be a few issues; hopefully, it is as simple as reigniting your pilot light; or it could be composite build-up that needs to be cleaned off by a professional plumber, it could also be that your thermostat may need to be looked at or replaced.

Remember, safety first, do not to touch your water heater if you have no clue what you are doing. If you are comfortable enough, you can light the pilot, but other than this simple task, leave this complicated matter for the professionals at Anthony PHC Kansas City, this way, you’ll receive a proper plumbing diagnosis and fix.

Slow Sink?

Picture this, you are brushing your teeth, the water is on, then all of the sudden, you look down and notice nothing is draining, the water is stuck in your sink and slowly drains; this is certainly not a pleasant sight. At this point, you need to unclog whatever object is blocking the water from freely flowing down the drain.

Tip # 3

You have a couple of options with this scenario, you can try to run extremely hot water to see if this washes away the debris. Next, you could try using a drain snake, or you could resort to buying a chemical agent that will dissolve the unwanted debris (read and follow the instructions carefully, as the cleaning agent should not come into contact with human skin or pets).

If you decide to use the drain snake, you will need to insert it into the problematic drain, you’ll then have to push the tool down further while turning the handle, keep pushing until you feel the obstruction; now push the debris down and free your pipe.

Is your sink still slow after trying all of the above methods? Anthony PHC Kansas City will rescue your pipes and plumbing in an urgent manner.

Bathtub Clog?

So you’re taking a shower, your feet are drenched with overflowing water, considering the tub is not draining…

This is not an ideal experience for anyone, which is why it is important to get to the bottom of this issue immediately.

Tip # 4

If you are brave enough then you can buy or reach for your nearest drain snake, follow the directions, insert it into the bathtub drain and begin to push and twist deep to remove any debris that stands in the way of the water and the outgoing drain.

Dealing with this issue is never ideal as constant water build-up will soon cause mold. Getting your bathtub clog under control is imperative, especially if you don’t want it to affect your main sewer line.

Toilet Backup

The quickest do-it-yourself method is to use a plunger if your toilet is backed up. First things first, see if you can solve this issue yourself before calling a plumber.

Tip # 5

Make sure that you purchase the right plunger that fits your toilet bowl hole. You will need the dome-shaped area of the plunger to cover the entire hole inside of the toilet. There will also have to be enough still water in the toilet bowl, if not, add water.

Wear gloves and personal protective equipment; position the plunger right over the hole, push down to gain suction and keep pushing down and up—do not break the suction. If you’ve gained good suction, chances are, the clog will diminish after several plunging attempts.

If nothing works, including the drain snake, then you may have a large backup in your main sewer line; never attempt to do this on your own as this process is too complex.

Call Anthony PHC 24/7 at 913-353-8444 or click here to learn more about drains, plumbing, and piping systems. We offer expedited service to everyone because no one should be left with problematic plumbing.

If this sounds familiar to you and you’re at your wit’s end and you’ve had enough of noisy AC parts keeping you up at night, then it is about time that you distinguish what type of noise you are hearing. In this article, Anthony PHC Kansas City experts will discuss the top five reasons why this may occur.

If you can’t figure out why your AC is making noise, you should never try and fix it yourself, otherwise, you could potentially disrupt your AC and cause damage to the unit and to yourself.

Always count on an Anthony PHC Kansas City specialist to educate and lead you to a properly working AC unit.

First, before you move forward, you need to determine the different sounds your AC is making and learn what they mean. Is the noise banging, buzzing, clicking, humming, or screeching? Perhaps it is so loud that you are only able to get a few hours of sleep per night? If this is the case, Anthony PHC experts are a simple phone call away.

1.) Bang, Bang AC

Banging sounds coming from your AC can represent the fact that something inside the unit is loose and may need tightening. It is not recommended that you open your unit by yourself, especially if you are not an expert in the HVAC craft.

2.) Buzzing AC

Buzzing sounds may indicate many issues that involve a loose part, or perhaps an air filter that needs to be changed. If the AC filter needs to be changed, this process can be completed by the building owner as long as new filters and directions are on hand.

3.) Clicking AC

This instance is not a usual occurrence. If you hear constant clicking, there could possibly be a malfunction inside of your unit, or perhaps the thermostat may be due to fail. This issue should not be handled alone, call Anthony PHC Kansas City and our general contractors will assure the noisy clicking sounds will be eradicated from your nightly and daily routine.

4.) Humming AC

Luckily, if your AC is humming and it does this every now and then, it usually isn’t a notorious issue, but if the sound is constant then it could potentially be an electrical issue, which will need to be looked at by an Anthony PHC Kansas City professional. You may need an expert to examine your AC motor and the wiring inside, as loose wires could also be contributing to the humming AC noise; the culprit keeping you up at night.

5.) Loud Pitched Screeching and Screaming

At this point, the best thing you can do to save your unit is to immediately turn off your AC and call an Anthony PHC Kansas City general contractor who can properly diagnose your problem. A loud pitched scream deriving from your AC can point to a refrigerant leak. You will need to act quickly, otherwise, your AC parts inside could become damaged and your families health will be compromised from breathing in the harsh chemicals that relate to the refrigerant leak.

AC replacements can be a costly experience, it is always a wise plan to address the problem before your unit needs to be fully replaced. Any noise that comes from your AC needs to be addressed and investigated sooner than later; if you want to avoid paying a lump sum and plan to preserve optimal health for you and your family. The Anthony PHC Kansas City specialists will be able to help you keep your AC in tip-top shape throughout the entire year. Click here to learn more about our AC replacement services today.

sump pumphaga click para la version espanol
Your sump pump system is your main line of defense against indoor flooding, but only if it is working! If you have a finished basement, or if you are storing valuables in an unfinished basement, you should take regular steps to ensure that your sump pump system is working.

To be well protected against the devastating financial losses associated with indoor flooding, you need to do the following:

  • Test your sump pump now, before the torrential rains and power outages do it for you, AND
  • Invest in a Battery Back Up Sump Pump if you don’t already have one.

How do I know if my Sump Pump is Working?

Sump pumps get a real workout during the rainy season, and they can stop working at any time. But sitting idle without regular use can also cause them to fail. You should test your sump pump frequently by taking these easy steps:

Step 1:  Test the Pump

Fill the pump pit with water and watch to see if the pump activates. If it doesn’t, and you know you have power to the outlet, then the pump needs to be replaced.

Step 2:  Watch the Drain

Watch the pump drain water out of its basin. Make sure there are no leaks in the discharge pipe. Go outside to ensure that water is terminating where it is supposed to.

Step 3:  Test the Shut-off

Stay until the pump turns off, so you know its shut-off feature is working properly. A pump that won’t shut off will eventually overheat and may stop functioning altogether.  If the pump does not shut off automatically, it will need to be repaired or replaced.

If my Sump Pump is Working, Do I Still Need an Additional Battery Backup Sump Pump?

In order to fully defend against indoor flood damage, you need a battery backup sump pump in addition to your regular sump pump. Sump pumps can fail at any time, and they do not warn you ahead of time when this has happened, so a backup pump will provide just that – a second chance at stopping the flood if the primary pump fails. Also, battery backup sump pumps work whether or not the electricity has been lost due to storm activity, and in the Midwest electrical outages are common during the stormy seasons.

A battery backup sump pump will also pump along with your primary pump when there is more water than your primary pump can handle. A backup pump will typically handle 1000 to 2200 gallons per hour. It also has a maintenance alarm to notify you when service is needed.

How Do I Test My Backup Sump Pump?

A battery backup sump pump should be tested in the same way as your regular pump. With the primary sump pump unplugged, run through steps 2 and 3 from above and make sure the pump drains the water and shuts off.

During the testing process, keep an eye on the battery indicator light. If it remains green, it is a good indication that your battery is strong. Fortunately, battery backup sump pumps have alarms that alert homeowners when the battery is nearing the end of its life.

Does the Battery in my Backup Sump Pump require Maintenance?

Some do. Maintenance-free batteries are aptly named, and shouldn’t need maintenance as long as they are being charged. Some backup sump pump batteries are not maintenance-free however; these batteries need to have the water levels checked in their cells every 6 months. If your battery has removable caps on the top of its cells then you will need to keep the water level up. The batteries used for this application are special standby batteries and not car batteries or deep cycle marine batteries. Standby batteries last approximately 5 years.

How Often Should I Replace My Sump Pump?

The average sump pump lasts for about 7 to 9 years. You should replace or repair the pump if it fails any of the tests above.

Here some warning signs that your sump pump might be failing:

  • Makes strange noises
  • Vibrates excessively
  • Infrequent pump usage
  • Runs all the time
  • Irregular cycling
  • Visible rust
  • Seven years or older
  • Motor sometimes gets stuck
  • Motor failure
  • Installed by the builder
  • Frequent power outages

Check Homeowner’s Insurance

Not all insurance adequately covers damaged valuables or the costly repairs necessary to undo water damage and the mold growth that occurs afterward. Flood insurance riders may not cover damage caused by malfunctioning sump pumps unless you have a sump pump rider, and it still may not cover sump pump failures unless you can prove regular maintenance was done on the unit.

Call Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling

A qualified plumbing professional can best make the assessment of whether a sump pump system needs to be repaired or replaced and when, and our plumbers are trained to do just that. Anthony stocks both sump pumps and battery backup sump pumps on all trucks to be available whenever you need them. So don’t hesitate to contact us at A-N-T-H-O-N-Y (268-4669) KS or MO or click here to schedule a visit.