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Was your home built before 1975? 

You may have a potential disaster lurking underground!You may have a potential disaster lurking underground!

If your home was built prior to 1975 then you most likely have cast iron sewer lines. High-quality cast iron pipe is approved for plumbing and is still used today. However, about 50 years ago imported steel made its way to the US. The imported steel was not subjected to the same quality standards but became popular due to its lower cost. American companies were forced to produce lower quality steel that could compete pricewise. Also, recycled steel became more popular. Much of the new cast iron is produced from lower quality recycled steel rather than smelting new steel from ore. The new, lower quality, steel is prone to rusting, splitting and cracking. A broken or cracked sewer line will stop the normal flow of sewage, allowing raw sewage and water to run in your yard or much worse, back up into your home. It is also prone to scaling which occurs when pipe oxidizes from the inside. The inside of the pipe bubbles, splinters and flakes off. The splinters catch paper products flushed down toilets and eventually cause stoppages by clogging the normal flow of sewage. This then causes the sewer line to back up into the house. A back up inside your home can cause significant water damage as well as health hazards from raw sewage.

How do you determine if your home has cast iron piping?

Often, we find older homes have had previous repairs or sections of the sewer replaced. You may think you have a PVC sewer line when in fact only parts of it are PVC tied into sections of cast iron. The most accurate way to check your entire sewer system is to have a sewer camera run through the main. The camera can determine what type of piping you have, and the condition of the piping.

I have cast iron piping, now what?

If the sewer camera reveals rust, cracks, splits or thinning of the pipe your best option is to have the line replaced as soon as possible.

If the sewer camera reveals excess scaling a technique called chain knocking and hydro-jetting can be used to remove the scale build up and return your sewer line into good working condition.

Call us today to schedule to have your sewer line inspected.

Roots in your sewer pipes?

Sometimes, plumbing problems are caused by things we can see- like a clogged drain or an overflowing tub. However, these aren't always the root of the problem. While these are easy to fix, there is another dangerous plumbing issue that you should be aware of: roots in pipes.
It may sound strange, but it's not unusual for roots to find their way into plumbing systems and cause a major headache. 
Root infiltration into your sewer lines can cause serious problems if not treated quickly and efficiently. Roots growing in sewer pipes can clog drains, back up wastewater, and even completely destroy pipes. You should be aware of the signs of roots in your pipes so that you can take quick action before the problem gets worse.

Why Do Tree Roots Grow Into Pipes?

Tree roots grow into pipes for several different reasons. One potential cause is they are seeking something they need to grow, such as water or nutrients.

Another common cause of tree roots growing into pipes is because they are already there! Many older homes have been around for decades, and trees have had plenty of time to grow in them. Roots can easily find their way into a sewer line and cause damage.

Tree roots can also get into your system if you recently moved near a mass of trees. Pipes last only about 30 years, so make sure to check for leaks every year. 

There are numerous colors, shapes and sizes of tree roots. Roots grow every day and can even cause major blockages once they grow large enough to occupy the entire inside diameter of the pipe.

Speaking of growing: They can grow about an inch or more a day and can travel through the smallest spaces to get to water. Some roots even split once they get deep enough in search of more nutrients.

Even though tree roots don't consume as much water as household items as toilets do, their constant intake is still enough to give you a headache or two.

Tree roots suck up water through their pores to survive, much like we do. The difference is that tree roots need more water than humans do. While humans need at least one liter of water per day for survival, trees require anywhere from 10 - 100+ liters of water every day!


Signs You Have Roots In Your Pipes

There are several  signs to look for in the case of roots growing into your pipes.

  • The first sign of root intrusion is if your home has a slowly draining water system.

  • The second sign of a root in your sewer pipes is gurgling sounds coming from your toilet.

  • Another sign is finding patches of grass that are much greener than the surrounding grass. That green grass is likely benefiting from the extra water and nutrients from the intrusion.

  • A sunken areas in the yard can often be a sign of a root intrusion. As the roots create a hole in the pipe, the surrounding dirt is washed into the city sewer. While the hole may seem small, they can create mini sinkholes which can be quite dangerous. 

If you do find an issue with roots in your plumbing system, it's important to call a professional plumber immediately and have the problem taken care of before you end up with a large issue on your hands. F1 Plumbing Corp can perform a camera inspection to confirm the presence of roots and remove them.


Preventing Roots From Entering Pipes

To prevent tree roots from entering your plumbing system again, you should make sure that the trees or plants near your home are not feeding off of your water. There are a few ways to do this:

  • Install a rain gutter to collect rainwater from nearby trees and plants. This will keep them from absorbing any of the water.

  • Create a barrier around your house with a layer of gravel at least 3 inches thick. Be sure that it extends at least 12 inches past the perimeter of your home. The best way to create a barrier is by using four layers; the first two layers should be made up of washed gravel (gravel stones that are clean on one side), while the last two layers should consist entirely of cobble (granite-like rocks).

Roots from nearby trees and plants can grow into your plumbing system, which is why you need to keep a close eye on the roots that are coming in contact with or touching your pipes. If you notice any signs of an invasion (slow draining or toilet gurgling), it's time to call in professional help to get rid of them before they cause more serious damage than just some unpleasing odors! f1 Plumbing Corp has been providing quality plumbing service. Contact us today at (305) 497-6450 if you're experiencing this problem so we can get started helping you out right away.

4 Possible Reasons for That Mysterious Dripping Noise

A constant, recurring, or totally unpredictable dripping sound can drive practically any homeowner to the point of desperation. The frustration annoyance may seem even more unbearable when the sound appears to have no obvious cause, making it that much harder to troubleshoot and remedy that underlying issue.

Once you know some of the most common types of dripping noises and the reasons that they occur, you'll feel more confident about describing the problem to your plumber and getting the right kind of care for it. Consider the following four possible causes of plumbing-related dripping sounds.


1. Leaky Faucets

A leaky faucet can make just enough noise to keep you and your loved ones awake or distract you from your daytime activities. At the same time, it may sound so quiet and diffuse that you can't locate the guilty faucet in question, or it may drip so slowly that you never catch sight of water escaping.

A variety of mechanical problems can cause a faucet to drip. Sometimes the leakage occurs at the bottom of the spout, the result of a failed O-ring that no longer seals properly. Corrosion inside the faucet can change the shape of its inlet ports, interfering with the function of internal seals. Mineral scale can also affect seal performance.

Thankfully, a skilled plumber can identify and correct these leakage issues relatively easily. While mineral scale buildup may respond to a thorough cleaning, your plumber will most likely need to replace a faulty seal. Sometimes replacement of the entire faucet offers the simplest and most effective solution.


2. Toilet Tank Problems

You may think of toilet problems mostly in terms of disastrous clogs or overflows. However, more subtle problems can also cause an otherwise-functional toilet to make maddening dripping sounds. If your sounds seem to emanate from the bathroom (but the bathroom sink doesn't leak), suspect this appliance.

Dripping sounds often originate in the toilet tank. Sometimes an aging overflow tube will develop a crack that extends beneath the toilet tank's fill line. When this occurs, you'll hear a dripping sound as the excess water trickles into the bowl. A flapper that doesn't seat properly can also encourage water to drip constantly.

Plumbers diagnose the exact cause of this problem by removing the toilet tank lid, flushing the toilet. they can spot signs of tube leakage, flapper malfunctions, and problems that prevent the ball float from rising to the fill line. Solutions may include adjusting the flapper chain or replacing a worn-out part.


3. Cracked Pipes

A dripping noise with no identifiable origin point could lurk hidden within your walls. While this issue could stem from many mostly-harmless causes, it could also indicate a leak. A cracked pipe that leaks may produce structural damage (and spike your water bill) unless you get it addressed promptly.

The dripping noise you hear could come from some sort of motion, concussion, or vibration in the pipes themselves. For instance, temperature changes that cause thermal expansion may make pipes produce tapping, ticking, or dripping noises. Abnormal water pressure or air in the pipes can also create such sounds.

If you believe that your dripping sounds come from behind a wall or ceiling, contact your plumber immediately. This expert can catch and fix a little leak before it becomes a big one. The installation of a water meter pressure regulating valve or a shock-absorbing device called an air arrestor can stop vibration-related sounds.


4. Slow Drains

You don't have to have damaged plumbing to hear an annoying drip from it. In many cases, a slow drain can cause these sounds, especially if you have recently used the appliance in question. A clogged shower drain, for instance, may catch water, slowing its rate of removal and making it drip instead of flow.

Ask your plumber about safe, non-destructive ways of removing and preventing such clogs. If an especially deep or stubborn clog fails to respond to these methods or products, your plumber can use professional tools to eliminate the clog.

F1 Plumbing Corp Services can look at your plumbing, listen for dripping or other unwelcome noises, identify plumbing problems, and free you from those annoying sounds. Contact us today to schedule service.

The Cost of Water Leaks

If a pipe suddenly bursts, spilling water all over your home, you probably won't wait to contact the plumber to start cleaning up the mess. However, slower water leaks are often ignored or go unnoticed because they have little or hard-to-see signs. If you don’t notice these leaks, they can turn into expensive repairs. Keep reading to check out the real cost of water leaks.

Wasted Water

One of the leading problems with water leaks is wasted water, which increases your water bill. A small leak of 10 drips per minute can waste 29 gallons of water a month, while a faster drip can waste 330 gallons of water per month. Not only is that a waste of water, but you must also pay for not using it. This faster leak can add up to $6 or more to your monthly water bill.

Toilet leaks, however, can be much more expensive. If the toilet constantly runs, it can waste an incredible 200 gallons of water per day or 6,000 gallons a month. This can increase your water bill by up to $70 a month. In most cases, you can hear and stop a leaking toilet by ensuring the flapper properly closes. But this may only be a temporary fix that you have to do after each flush.


Water and Mold Damage

Even small amounts of water can cause water damage. If the leak is hidden in the wall, the lack of ventilation may keep the area wet longer, and insulation can absorb large amounts of water.

Fixing water damage is often an invasive process because you may have to remove large portions of drywall. On top of that, your insurance provider may not cover the damage if they can argue the leak was due to a lack of maintenance.

Additionally, failure to fix water damage can lead to mold growth. Not only is mold ugly and smelly, but it can cause some health issues if you already struggle with health concerns like allergies and asthma.

Even if you are not sensitive to mold, some more aggressive molds like black mold can cause complications. On some surfaces, you can kill and clean mold, but porous surfaces like drywall and wood may need to be replaced.


Pest Infestation

Leaking water and water damage also attracts pests. Pests like quiet, dark, safe places like inside your walls. And a leaking pipe is an attractive water supply for them. As a result, they may decide to make your home their home. Common pests attracted to leaking pipes include silverfish, rats, mice, cockroaches, and termites.

In addition, some of these pests (like termites) may burrow into the wood in your wall. If the wood is wet or starting to rot due to moisture, pests can burrow even easier.

If left untreated, pests can spread throughout your home, and they may pose health risks from their droppings, saliva, and fleas.


Fire Risk

Water and electricity don't mix, but your electrical system may be behind the same walls as your plumbing pipes. As long as you maintain both systems, there is no issue. However, a leaking pipe may expose the wires to water. If those wires become damaged, or if the water hits an area with no insulation, the water can create a spark.

A spark won't always lead to a fire, but if there is also a lot of insulation around the area, the spark can ignite it. Similarly, if the area has a lot of moisture, the spark may spread or be strong enough to ignite the drywall or wood.

Water leaks can become incredibly expensive, especially if you ignore them or don’t notice them. If you would like to know more, or if you want to have your plumbing system inspected, contact us at F1 Plumbing Corp. today.

You may have a potential disaster lurking underground!You may have a potential disaster lurking underground!

Tankless water heaters are efficient and easy to maintain, but they are still susceptible to some problems. Below are some of the common problems with these systems.

Restricted Energy Supply

The water heater won't turn on if its energy supply is off. For an electric water heater, the electrical supply might be off because:

  • The circuit breaker has tripped

  • The electrical system has a short circuit

  • The ignition system, such as the electrode, has malfunctioned

For a gas system, here are some things that might restrict gas flow:

  • Improper gas pressure (for example, due to incorrect setting)

  • A closed gas valve

  • Gas supply interruption to the house

Mineral Buildup

The water supply to your house contains some dissolved minerals. Every time you use the water heater, some of the minerals remain and accumulate in the heating system. Over time, the accumulated minerals can discolor your hot water and give it a bad odor. Extreme mineral buildup can also damage the heat exchanger.

Flush the water heater regularly to get rid of the mineral buildup. The degree of mineral buildup depends on the water temperature and amount of minerals dissolved in the water. More minerals and higher temperatures call for more frequent flushing.

Vent or Exhaust Blockage

Unless you have an electric water heater, the system will require fresh air for combustion and a venting system for the exhaust. A blockage on the air supply or exhaust system spells problems for your water heater.

Blocked air supply can cause ignition or combustion problems. A blocked vent can cause overheating, chock the heating system, and foul up your indoor air. In both cases, the solution is to unblock the system.


Your water heater has a specific capacity, and you overload it if you try to heat more water than the system can handle. You can overload the water heater if you operate multiple hot water systems or open multiple hot water faucets simultaneously. Overloading the system is bad because:

  • You won't have adequate hot water

  • The system can overwork and overheat

  • The system can shut down

Understand your water heater capacity so that you don't overload it. Try to limit the number of hot water that flows out of the system at any time. Upgrade your water heater's capacity if you need more hot water, for example, if you renovate the house and install more hot water appliances.


Tankless water heaters don't easily corrode because they don't heat water all the time – but they can still corrode. For example, condensation around the gas burner can corrode it, and a corroded gas burner can suffer blockage or leakage. The heat exchanger can also corrode and cause the system to overheat.

The first step is to remove the corrosion. Replace the affected part, such as the burner, if the corrosion has already caused serious damage. Extreme corrosion in an aging system might call for the water heater's replacement.


Lastly, overheating is also bad for your tankless water heater. Overheating can occur if:

  • You overuse the system

  • You set the water temperature too high

  • A malfunction restricts water supply to the system

  • Temperature sensors malfunction

  • Something blocks the air

The solution depends on the cause of overheating. Note that prolonged overheating can cause catastrophic damage to the water heater.

For most of these problems, you can repair your water heater and continue to use it. Water heater replacement is only necessary in extreme cases. F1 Plumbing Corp. has  experience in the plumbing industry. Contact us today about your water heater problem, and we will be glad to solve it so that you can continue to get hot water in the house.

How Do I Avoid Water Damage?


Shower and Tubs

  • Inspect tiles to see if any are missing or cracked. Check grout areas to see that the grout is not missing. Water can seep behind tiles and damage the wall if tile and grout is not in good shape.

  • Don't let water sit in the tub. Standing water can find ways to get around a faulty drain.

  • Check out caulking around tubs and showers and replace or repair any areas that may allow water to seep through.

  • Dry the floor immediately after bathing or showering. Don't let water sit on the floor.

  • Use the exhaust fan to pull moist air out of the area. Keep the room as dry as possible.

Sinks and Cabinets

  • These are exposed to moisture every day. Inspect them often to see that there are no leaks or moisture issues that might cause problems.

  • If the trap has a leak or any moisture around it this could indicate a problem with your plumbing in Chico. Somewhere in the system there has to be excess moisture. Get this looked at.

  • Any drips from faucets need to be repaired. Small leaks lead to larger leaks and bigger problems.

  • Check seals and grout around sinks also. If they are cracked, broken or simply missing replace or repair them.


  • The seal on the bottom of the toilet needs to be inspected regularly. If you see water near the base of the toilet have the seal replaced.

  • Make sure the tank does not leak. If you hear the tank filling for no reason you know there is a leak. This constant water drip can cause damage to the toilet and any others near it that stay wet.

  • Check water lines leading to the toilet. These can often leak and cause damage if left unchecked.

General Plumbing

  • Water leaks in the bathroom are often hard to detect since most of the pipes are in the wall. Check the walls for soft spots and discoloration. 

  • Inspect adjacent rooms to the bathroom. Water and moisture detected in these areas could indicate a problem in the bathroom

  • If you have a two story home check the ceiling areas under second story bathrooms to see if there are any issues.

What do I do When a Pipe Bursts? 

Put Safety First

  • Turn off the water at the main valve. You will stop further water damage right then and there (a momentary bright spot because you'll know that things can only get better from here.)

  • Assess the burst and the surrounding area to the best of your ability. If the pipe burst has occurred on an upper level, see if the water has already moved (or can move) to a lower level.

  • Turn off the electricity to the affected regions of your home. You cannot be “too safe” with this step; the combination of water and electricity can cause shocks, electrocution and even death. So if you're uncertain, shut down all the power.

  • Take photographs of the damage. Naturally, you want to get to work. But take a few minutes to take pictures or take pictures as you work. You will need them when you submit an insurance claim.

Remove Saturated Items

  • Call for plumbing help if you need it, whether it be from the Experts or, for a leak contained to one room, a neighbor or friend. Without trying to alarm you, understand that you are now in a contest against the clock since mold can develop in as little as 24 hours.

  • Open the windows for ventilation. If you still have electricity, turn on fans to get air circulating and reduce odors.

  • Remove anything and everything that has been touched by water,including rugs, furniture and books. Get these wet items out of the house – don't just set them aside – so that you don't create more work for yourself later. Place wet items on a tarp in your garage or on the lawn.

Remove the Water

  • Use a wet vac to start removing the water. Depending on how much water has accumulated, this step could take a while; emptying the vac takes time, too. Keep at it until your efforts literally come up dry.

  • Tend to wood flooring before carpet since it is now susceptible to warping. Check your flooring warranty for emergency care instructions. At the least, wood floors should be dried out thoroughly with fans.

  • Pull back sections of waterlogged carpet and padding and train a high-powered fan on the area to dry it out.

  • Run a dehumidifier to draw moisture out of the air.

Stem the Damage

  • Clean vinyl floors with soap and water. If you fear mold or mildew growth, use bleach, too. Fill a 1-gallon bucket of water and clean ceramic tile with 1 cup of white vinegar and stone tile with 1 tablespoon of Murphy Oil Soap.

  • Check your drywall for water damage. If the seams are still intact, the drywall should be fine. If the seams have swelled or separated, you will need more than plumbing help from the Experts; you will need new drywall, too.

What’s the First Step to Take When My Toilet is Overflowing?


Step 1: Stop the Rush of Water

  • Lay some old towels on the floor, especially if there is a lot of water there, so that you don't accidentally slip and fall.

  • Remove the lid from the toilet tank and set it down.

  • Reach inside the tank and press down on the flapper valve – a rubber piece located in the bottom-center region of the tank. This move will stop water from flowing into the bowl and, by extension, from flowing over the sides, too.

  • Lift up on the float to stop the tank from filling. The water level in the bowl should start to drop. After about a minute, the water level should return to normal; now you can let go of the float and let the bowl refill without worrying about it overflowing. But keep an eye on it, just in case.

  • If the water level doesn't start to drop after about a minute, keep holding onto the float while you shut off the water at the toilet supply valve. This is where things can get tricky, but not for long: the valve is usually located near the floor or on the wall behind the toilet. Turn it clockwise to close it. If you cannot hold onto the float and reach the valve at the same time, release the float and close the valve as quickly as you can.

Step 2: Investigate the Scope of the Plumbing Problem

  • Test the other plumbing fixtures in the bathroom to see if they are working as they should.

  • Check the other toilets in your home to see if they flush properly. A toilet can overflow for several reasons, including: a problematic septic field (if your home is on a septic system); a blocked trap, an S-shaped device located between the bowl and the drain line which is supposed to keep the drain from clogging in the first place; a clog in the pipes inside your home; a clog in the pipes leading outside your home, including the main sewer line, which can be disrupted by the root systems of trees; or a low-flow toilet, which generally means older models. Most often, toilets overflow because they are unable to process a foreign object (such as a children's toy) or an influx of material (such as tissue).

  • Call Experts F1 plumbing Corp help the minute you encounter anything troubling or suspicious. 

Step 3: Try to Unclog the Toilet and Clean Up

  • Place the cup of a toilet plunger at the center of the hole in the toilet bowl. Exert slow pressure at first; then gradually increase the pace and pressure of your movements until the clog is dislodged and the toilet flushes freely.

  • Clean up large amounts of water with a wet/dry vacuum. Old towels should suffice for smaller spills. Ensure that you dry out smaller spills. Ensure that you dry out any soaked areas – and disinfect them with bleach – so that you don't develop a mold problem.


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