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Pueblo Plumbing and Heating

What is the Best Temperature For Water Heaters?

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If you are a regular reader of our blog, you are probably aware that you can change the temperature of your hot water heater. This may have led you to set it to an unnecessarily high temperature.

While some websites and plumbers may tell you that 140° F is the optimal temperature for your hot water heater, they are wrong. There are multiple reasons why setting your temperature this high is a bad idea.

The first reason is energy efficiency. If you have a traditional water heater with a holding tank, the water is kept at your desired temperature around the clock, whether you are using it or not. Keeping it at 120° instead of 140° can save you up to 10% on your monthly water heating bill.

Another reason to turn your water heater down is for the health and safety of your skin. Even if you love taking hot showers, 140° is far from comforting. Water that hot can cause 2nd degree burning after only three seconds of exposure, and 3rd degree burning after just five seconds.

Not only can that water damage your skin, it can damage the plates, utensils, and cookware in your dishwasher.

The experts at Patterson Plumbing and Heating recommend keeping your hot water heater set to 120° F. This is still plenty hot enough to wash your body, dishes, and clothes, while also saving you money on your energy bills and helping to prevent scalding accidents. It takes a full five minutes of exposure to 120° water to cause a 3rd degree burn.

Patterson Plumbing and Heating is Colorado’s leading authority in hot water heaters, plumbing repairs, and home heating services. If you live in Pueblo or the surrounding area, contact us online or give us a call at (719) 544-4922.

What You Need To Know About Water Softening

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Is the tap water in your home cloudy, distasteful, or downright dirty? You could be dealing with something known as “hard water”.

Don’t worry – there are ways to purify your home’s water to make it cleaner, clearer, and better tasting. This process is called water softening; here is what you need to know about it.

What is hard water?

Water is said to be “hard” when it contains dissolved minerals such as calcium and magnesium. Hard water is generally no threat to our health, but it can harm our home’s plumbing system and appliances. The minerals in hard water can accumulate to clog pipes, reduce water flow, and hinder energy-efficiency.

How do I know if I have hard water?

Be on the lookout for the following signs around the home, which could indicate that you have hard water:

  • Bad-tasting water

  • Cloudy or rusty-looking water

  • Water spots on freshly-washed dishes, glasses, and cutlery

  • Film or residue on shower faucets, curtains, or doors

  • Soap does not work as effectively on your skin, clothes, or dishes

  • Your hot water bill has skyrocketed

What is water softening and what are the benefits?

Water softening is a technique used to remove minerals from hard water. It works by using a process called ion exchange. Just like magnets, the minerals in water contain a charge. Two opposite charges attract each other, and two similar charges repel. The water softener is charged in order to attract the minerals in the tap water, removing them before they ever make it to the faucet.

Some benefits of water softening include:

  • Clean water that tastes good

  • No more soap spots on your dishes

  • Softer skin and smoother hair

  • Improved performance of plumbing system, as well as appliances such as washing machine and dishwasher

  • Reduced water heating bill

Many homes in Pueblo, Colorado and the surrounding area suffer from hard water. As an authorized retailer and installer of Kinetico water softening products, the experts at Patterson Plumbing & Heating can solve your hard water problems once and for all. Call us at (719) 544-4922 to schedule a free in-home water quality analysis.

How To Find A Qualified Plumber


There are some things in life you just don’t skimp on. Your mattress, car maintenance, and plumbing services are perfect examples of these things.

If you try to save a few dollars by hiring an unqualified plumber, it will wind up costing you more in the long run. Shoddy plumbing work will always come back to bite you in the form of future repairs and damages.

Save yourself the time and hassle by hiring a good plumber who can get the job done right the first time. Here are a few tips to help you find one:

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  • Ask friends and family. If you have a friend, family member, or relative that has recently had plumbing work done, ask them if they can recommend anyone.
  • Turn to online resources. If you don’t know anyone who can recommend a plumber, the internet certainly can. Resources such as Angie’s List and the Better Business Bureau can help you find a qualified plumber in your area.
  • Look for licenses and experience. Who would you trust more – a fully-licensed plumber with 20 years of experience, or a random, unlicensed “contractor” performing his first job?
  • Upfront pricing is a MUST. When it comes to hiring any kind of contractor for your home, choose a someone who provides up-front pricing. An estimate is great, but paying triple what you were originally quoted for isn’t.
  • Do they guarantee their work? Warranties are another important factor to consider. If a plumber isn’t confident in their own work, how can they expect you to be?

If you are looking for a qualified, reputable plumber in Colorado, look no further than Patterson Plumbing & Heating! For the past 20+ years, homeowners in Pueblo and the surrounding area have come to us for our superior plumbing services. We offer up-front pricing, stand behind all of our work, and have an A+ accreditation with the Better Business Bureau. See what we can do for you – call us today at (719) 544-4922.

5 Inexpensive Ways To Keep Your House Warm

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If you are having trouble keeping warm during the winter months, the first thing most of us do is reach for the thermostat. Not so fast; it shouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg to combat the frigid winter weather. Here are five ways to keep your house warmer without breaking the bank.

1. Seal air leaks

If you have cold drafts in your house, your money could be going out the window – literally. Air leaks can result in heat loss of up to 20%. Prevent this by sealing leaky windows and doors with weatherstripping or caulking.

2. Use your ceiling fans

Many people don’t know this, but ceiling fans can be used to keep your house warm or cool. During the winter months, set the blades to rotate clockwise. This will push the warm air that gathers at the ceiling back down into the room.

3. Get a humidifier

When the humidity levels in our homes drop too low, it can lead to dry skin, sore throats, and warping of wooden floors and furniture. Dry air also doesn’t feel as warm as moist air, so using a humidifier can actually make your home feel a few degrees warmer.

4. Wear more clothes

Staying warm is as easy as throwing on your favorite sweater and comfiest pair of sweat pants. This costs you absolutely nothing, and is the perfect way to stay warm and cozy on even the coldest of days.

5. Tune up your furnace

Annual furnace maintenance performed by a professional technician can lower your heating costs and extend the lifespan of your equipment. Call your local HVAC service and see how a heating system tune up can benefit you.

Pueblo, Colorado had relied on Patterson Plumbing & Heating to keep warm for over 30 years. We provide a variety of heating services such as furnace repair, new heating system installation, and annual tune ups. Call us today to see what we can do for you at (719) 544-4922 or schedule an appointment online.

Reasons to Schedule a Tune Up for Your Heating System

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When was the last time you changed the oil in your car, cleaned your house, or had your heating system tuned up by a licensed technician? While you have likely done the first two pretty recently, your HVAC system probably doesn’t get the attention it deserves.

It runs around-the-clock to keep you warm and cozy during the winter, the least you could do is give it a little TLC every once in a while. One of the best ways to do this is by getting it tuned up every year. Here are three reasons why you should call Patterson Plumbing and Heating today to schedule your furnace tune up:

1. Improve Energy Efficiency

Have you noticed that your heating bill continues to climb, but your home doesn’t feel any warmer? This could be due to things like clogged air filters and dirty components. Our technicians will inspect and clean the various parts of your heating system, allowing it to operate at peak efficiency.

2. Prevent Future Breakdowns

More than 80% of heating repairs are caused by problems that could be prevented with a little bit of simple maintenance. Our technicians will inspect your heating system for warning signs of potential failures, helping to prevent future breakdowns and extend the lifespan of your equipment.

3. Validate Your Warranty

Having an annual maintenance service is such a good idea that many manufacturers require it. Refer to your owner’s manual – many companies explicitly state that your warranty will be voided if their equipment isn’t regularly serviced by a licensed professional.

What are you waiting for? Schedule your furnace tune up with Patterson Plumbing and Heating today! Getting in touch with us is simple, just call 719 (544) 4922 or schedule an appointment online. Don’t forget to connect with us on social media – we are active on Facebook and Twitter.

5 Steps To Prep Your Home for Vacation

New Year, new vacations, here’s what you need to do to make sure your home is ready for your departure:

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Step 1. Pull the plug on all of your electronics. TVs, toasters, coffee pots, computers, etc., can continue to drain power even while in the off position. You’ll want to keep your fridge plugged in and perhaps some lights (on a timer) for security reasons, but all else can be unplugged.

Step 2. Tidy up before you go, including cleaning out your fridge and freezer, sink traps and garbage disposal. After being away for days the last thing you want to come home to is offensive odors from old food. For a DIY cleaning solution – mix half a cup of vinegar and half a cup of water and pour each down your drains.

Step 3. Lower your heat, but do not shut it off. To avoid freezing pipes set your thermostats to no lower than 55 degrees. If you have pets or house plants in the home, adjust the temperature accordingly.

Step 4. Turn off the water supply to your home – this way if you missed any small leaks before, you can rest easy knowing there won’t be a flood to return home to.

Step 5. Phone a friend – not only to stop by and check on your home (and feed your pets) in your absence, but also advise your in-home service professionals (alarm service)that you’ll be out of town.

The last thing you’ll want to do is come home to a disaster. Look forward to your 2016 travels knowing your home is prepared!

For over 25 years, Patterson Plumbing has been Pueblo, Colorado’s go to company for plumbing, heating, cooling, water treatment, and remodeling needs. If you need us, we’ll be there – FAST. Schedule an appointment online or give us a call: 719.544.4922.

Connect with Patterson Plumbing & Heating on Social Media

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Here at Patterson Plumbing and Heating, we’re not only here to take your phone calls – we’re available digitally as well. We want to make sure we are available for our customers in any way that is convenient, whether it’s simply allowing you to schedule an appointment online or being your go to source for tips and information year round thanks to our blog and social media channels.

From plumbing tips to maintenance tutorials – we do our best to keep our community informed about their home’s plumbing, heating, and cooling systems. Should you be interested in home trends, trying to figure out the best ways to organize a small bath or kitchen space, or even how to unclog a toilet without a plunger – we’ve got you covered.

So where can you find us? Aside from our blog, we’re also active on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube.

Be sure to connect with us today!

At Patterson Plumbing we are experts in everything from plumbing to heating and air conditioning repair, replacement and installation. Our plumbers, drain cleaning techs, and home HVAC professionals can repair any of your home’s plumbing, furnace, boiler or air conditioning problems. When you need us, we’ll be there – FAST! Explore what services we offer online or give us a call: 719-544-4922

Customer Review Spotlight

reviews word on a speech bubbleWith the New Year quickly approaching, what better time than now to resolve to take better care of your home. And where your plumbing, heating, and cooling are concerned – that’s our area of expertise. Just take a look at what some of our customers have said recently about our work:

This letter is on behalf of three very special people, who recently had an extensive amount of work at their home. The sewer line and piping under the house were in need of replacement . The work your employees provided and the compassion and commitment to do the job and to get it done no matter how long it took, went above and beyond! Your employees were courteous and respectful to their needs and even their pets were accommodated. This time of year is often so fast paced that we forget the true meaning of Christmas. Because of your work and dedication you have allowed these three very special people to remain in their home another Christmas season, the best gift of all! Thank you again! – Gerald V.

 

I am a long time customer of Patterson’s. They have done both heating and plumbing work for me. Their service people are eager and willing to satisfy the customer. I have an older home and often this presents uncommon problems. I feel they have gone that extra mile to meet my particular needs. Based upon the many years of quality service they have given me, I trust them completely. – Alfred V.

 

I had occasion to contact Patterson Plumbing and Heating for a problem on 10-28-15. I had the most positive experience I have ever had with any business contact. Everyone I talked to from the Customer Service Reps to the Field Technician were friendly and seemed genuinely concerned with my issue. I would not have a problem using or referring this folks to anyone. – Greg M.

 

At 4:00 pm I discovered my furnace was not working. I called Patterson’s and with-in 15 minutes I had a tech out here to look at it and give me a quote. The quote was reasonably priced and I authorized the work to be done. At the end of the job we turned the furnace back on and an “act of god” accident occurred. The technician did not do this purposefully in any shape way or form, it was just something that happened and an electrical surge was sent thru the system incurring a bit more damage. The tech and Patterson’s went way above and beyond to fix the problem, order new parts and installed them with no extra charge to me. I was right there with the tech when this happened and I know it was not his fault yet he made it right, replaced the burnt out parts and went way above to get my furnace in tip top working order again. My experience with Patterson’s was wonderful and I would highly recommend everyone to use their services when in need. I can’t say enough good things about the service the provided me with and wanted to make sure others knew what a wonderful experience I had with them and I will call them again in the future and know that I am getting good quality service with knowledge techs and parts. Thank you Patterson’s for such a wonderful experience!! – Richard B.

Thank you again for all the kind words – we’re happy to be of help to our community for all these years. For over 25 years, Patterson Plumbing has been Pueblo, Colorado’s go to company for plumbing, heating, cooling, water treatment, and remodeling needs. If you need us, we’ll be there – FAST. Schedule an appointment online or give us a call: 719.544.4922.

Preventing Burst Pipes This Winter

Burst pipes and winter go hand in hand. Why? Well when water freezes while contained, regardless of how strong the material, this expansion adds tremendous pressure – which can cause a pipe to burst. Pipes that freeze the easiest are those exposed to severe cold, like outdoor hose bibs, water sprinkler lines, and water supply lines in unheated areas of the home (crawl spaces, attics, garages, kitchen cabinets, basements).

Frozen Pipes

With a few preventative measures, you can lower the risk of burst or frozen pipes in your home:

  • Disconnect, drain, and store any outdoor garden hoses. Close inside valves that supply water to the outdoor hose bibs and open the outdoor bibs to let water drain out.
  • Identify unheated areas of the home with exposed pipes. Wrap those you find with pipe insulation or heating tape to prevent freezing.
  • If you are leaving on vacation, do not turn your heat OFF. Leave it on low, but no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Keep kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors open to allow warmer air to circulate your plumbing. (Just be sure no cleaning products or hazardous items are in reach of small children.)
  • Close windows and cover any vents that are near pipes. Cold temperatures combined with wind drafts can cause pipes to freeze more frequently.
  • Make sure everyone in the home knows the location of the main shutoff valve and how to close it – in an emergency.

When it comes to your plumbing and the winter season, preparation is key. Should you experience frozen pipes or a pipe burst this season – give us a call immediately. Our team has helped Pueblo homes since the fall of 1984 and will not hesitate to send help your way.

Common Plumbing Lingo

While plumbing terms make our communications easier, we realize they may also sound like a foreign language to most. If you find yourself scratching your head when reading up on or troubleshooting your plumbing – you’re not alone.

To help end some confusion, we wanted to provide some of the most common terms clients hear and what they mean:

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Flapper – A rubber piece found at the bottom of the toilet tank that is raised to allow the water to flush and lowered when the tank is empty to refill.

Aerator – An insert in a faucet that adds air to flowing water. Without one, you’ll find your faucet forcefully sprays out water and causes splashing. To reduce splashing and produce a steadier, more stable stream an aerator is needed.

Backflow – When the flow of water happens in reverse. This is dangerous as it allows potable water to become contaminated and unusable.

Potable Water – Water that is safe for drinking.

Closet Auger – Also called toilet auger, is a flexible rod used to clear clogs and obstructions in the toilet.

Shutoff Valve – A valve used to stop the water supply in a pipe in case of malfunction or repair.

Hose Bib – Can be an internal or external spigot or faucet. In the case of outdoor, it is where your water hose is connected. Internal hose bibs can be found in the laundry area for your washing machine hook up.

When it comes to plumbing, a little understanding goes a long way! At Patterson Plumbing & Heating, we’re available for all of your plumbing needs. Give one of our expert technicians a call today: 719-544-4922. Don’t forget to LIKE us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more updates and industry news.