Blog - Wisler Plumbing

Why Can’t I Use Multiple Fixtures In My Townhouse?

 

Why Can’t I Use Multiple Fixtures In My Townhouse?

 

If you notice that you can’t use more than one plumbing fixture at a time in your townhouse, the simplest answer might just be that the water pressure is low at the street connection coming from your municipality. One of the things you can do to solve that problem is install a water booster pump. It boosts the pressure inside your home so that you’re able to use multiple outlets. The municipality is only required to provide a certain pressure at the street, and it probably does meet that requirement.

 

The next thing that comes to mind is the plumbing in the home itself. If you have a small pipe and you put water through it at 40 pounds of pressure, you might only get 2 gallons per minute. If you increase the pressure to 70 pounds, you’ll probably double that amount (4 gallons per minute). The higher the pressure, the more gallons per minute you’ll get. If the pipe that was put in your home isn’t sized appropriately and it’s too small, that can reduce the volume of water that you get at the outlets. If you have larger pipes with more volume, you don’t need higher pressure. If you have smaller pipes with less volume, you’ll need more pressure to get enough water. Sometimes the piping system in homes are designed and sized without any extra capacity. The plumbing code requires very minimal pipe size, and many townhouses are sized just at what’s needed to meet that requirement.

 

Sometimes there might also be a blockage or collapse of the main water line in the ground coming into the house. When the dirt settles and shifts, it can cause a pipe to pinch off and not provide very much water pressure in the home. In that situation (especially in a townhouse), I would suggest that you ask your neighbors if they are experiencing the same thing. If they are, then this probably isn’t the issue. It’s not the main water supply because everybody is using the same one. If your neighbors have good water pressure and you don’t, then it’s probably an issue that’s isolated to your system.

 

If you’re experiencing a similar water pressure issue in your townhome, contact us online or give us a call at 540-483-9382. We would make a service call and put a pressure gauge on the home to determine the static pressure (pressure before a fixture is run). With the gauge on the line, we would open up other outlets to see how much the pressure drops off. If it drops drastically, then there’s probably a blockage or something else that’s stopping the water from coming out. If there’s just a slight decrease in pressure, then it’s a water pressure issue that would require something like a booster or pump.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lessons Learned From Taking Kids to the Movies

 

I have a recent experience with taking my kids to Roanoke Cinema to watch Cars 3. My son loves Cars, so we took off Sunday afternoon and went over to the movies. The first thing I learned was that kids’ movies apparently have 30 minutes of previews. They show what amounts to a short film before they actually show the movie that you went to see. Unless you want to sit through a lot of previews and commercials, I would definitely recommend going late.

 

My son is four years old and my daughter is two. A two-year-old doesn’t necessarily tend to sit very still in the movie theater. There’s also a pretty good chance that someone this age will fall asleep. Either way, you’ll still be charged for the ticket (it’s odd to me that younger ones aren’t admitted free). If you’re not really looking to pay for your two-year-old to take a nap, you should probably leave them with someone else. You also might want to decide against buying the large concessions. Kids don’t eat that much when the movie is on, and they are pretty pricey items.

 

All in all, moviegoing is a cool experience for someone who is four or older. I would definitely recommend taking children to see Cars 3. If you want my in-depth review of Cars 3, give me a call immediately. Otherwise, reach out to us by contacting us online or giving us a call at 540-483-9382 for plumbing related questions.

 

What I’ve Learned From My Family

 

You can’t help but pick up some things from when you’re being raised (and even once you’re older). One of the habits that I’ve picked up from my family is a good work ethic. Our family has always worked hard, and I value the saying that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. When we’re down in a slump, the only thing that I know how to do is double down on work until we can get out of it. Having self-pity and a bad attitude while just complaining definitely isn’t going to help us get out of a slump. Work ethic is highly valued in today’s society, but unfortunately, it’s not as common as most people would like to see.

 

I’ve also learned that family members hold each other to a higher standard than friends or other people they’ve met. That can be a good thing, but it can also be a bad thing too—family members expect more out of each other and they will sometimes offer less grace or empathy. I think that it’s part of a healthy family, though, because they are there to hold you accountable. When it comes to a family business, I’ve definitely learned that there needs to be clearly defined responsibilities between each family member. This is something that can be easily overlooked. Everyone should know where their responsibility starts and ends.

 

There’s always a history with family, which can go all the way back across multiple generations. The reality is, you can either complain about it or embrace it. Sometimes that history can lead to baggage, but the most important thing is to understand where it comes from. Make sure not to hold a grudge for things that happened in the past. At the end of the day, you’ve grown up together, lived together, fought together, and cried together. Hopefully those experiences will lead to positive memories.

 

My brother currently has five children, with the oldest one being nine years old. I’ve learned that I don’t want to have that many kids, because it’s somewhat of a circus at his house. It’s definitely not for me because there’s a lot of pressure and anxiety involved. I’m sure that one day that won’t be the case for him, but that’s the kind of choice that can add years to your life very quickly.

 

I’ve also come to realize that we don’t value family as much as we should sometimes. The older that I get, the more value I place on my family. It’s just so easy to take family members for granted. Just this week I learned that an uncle of mine found out that he only has months to live due to brain cancer. Things like that can happen so quickly, and when tragedy hits a family, we might start to have regrets. As I’ve watched and learned, just don’t take your family for granted. They might not be there one day, and you’ll wish you had done things differently. Just live each day at a time and make the most out of the time you have.

 

No matter what challenges come up, you can count on your family. There’s just something about a blood relation that can be significant, but I’ve definitely learned not to abuse that as well. Taking advantage of a family member by not contributing back to the relationship can be damaging. As much as I need my family, they need me too. I have to make sure that our relationship is a two-way street.

 

Family is an integral part of what it means to be a part of Wisler Plumbing. If you have any questions about what family means to us, contact us online or give us a call at 540-483-9382.

What to Find Out Before Hiring a Contractor

What are some of the things you should find out before deciding to hire a plumber or contractor? The first question that most people say you should ask is how much it’s going to cost. I don’t think that’s necessarily the best question to ask right from the start. Instead, you might want to do some research or ask the contractor about their reviews or public reputation. It could be on Google, Angie’s List, the Better Business Bureau, or their business website.

 

Any established business is going to have a reputation. Thanks to the internet and social media, it doesn’t take long before people pick up on things that a business does. (Some of those things are true, and some of them aren’t.) I would definitely dig a little deeper instead of just looking on the surface. For instance, instead of just looking at the star rating, maybe read some of the reviews to see if they are relevant to you.

 

Another thing you should find out is whether the company you’re looking to hire is licensed with the state. Additionally, make sure the company has proper liability insurance, along with insurance for all their employees. References are always very important, too. Are the people that the company serves satisfied? It’s easy to hear about the bad situations if you just ask a couple of questions. A company with good, solid references and feedback is typically the one that will work hard to make sure that their clients are satisfied when all is said and done.

 

I think it’s also important to have a written price agreement that shows everything in black and white. Don’t assume anything, and make sure you ask questions if there’s something that you’re unsure about. I’ve had clients tell me about other companies that gave an estimate, just to later say it’s going to cost more after the job was done. Make sure you have a clear understanding of these things, and don’t ever feel like the questions you’re asking are stupid. You’ll want to establish these things upfront before going into a relationship with a contractor.

 

If you have any questions about where we stand in any of these areas, contact us online or give us a call at 540-483-9382.

 

How Fatherhood and Business are Related

Most people don’t think that fatherhood and business have much in common. Personally, I do think that they are very similar to each other. To me, being a father is about being a leader to my son, my daughter, and my home. It’s very much the same concept in a business—a successful business needs a leader who has several different traits.

 

The first trait that comes to mind is courage. You definitely need to have a lot of courage, both as a father and as a business owner. Courage is a strength because you’re dealing with adversity all the time, especially with children. They get down and discouraged sometimes, and  they might have things that they fear. That’s why they need someone to give them encouragement.

 

Integrity is another important trait because we need to keep our morals in line in terms of the way we think, talk, and act. Communication is very fundamental as well. I’ve seen families and businesses that don’t have very good communication. On the flip side, I’ve seen families and businesses with great communication. I think It’s an underlying factor in success both in the home and in a business.

 

Empathy, discipline, and vision are some other traits that come to mind. There are  circumstances where the best you can do is tell someone, “I understand.” The reason you might understand what they’re going through is because you or someone you know has been through something similar. You can’t always fix someone’s burden, but you can at least show empathy by telling them that you understand. I think discipline is a trait that speaks for itself. Vision is about making sure that our families know what our purpose is. In a business, it’s about making sure the team understands the big picture and where we’re headed in the long term. It’s more than just the day to day monotonous details that we go through. There is a purpose for the actions that we take.

 

You also have to have a willingness to learn, both as a father and a business owner. There’s always something new to learn, ways for you to improve, and things you can do to adapt to new situations. When a situation sideswipes you because you weren’t expecting it, you should be able to embrace the challenge. For instance, my son just started school and it’s a new experience for me. There are things that I wasn’t expecting, and being able to understand, adapt to the situation, and move forward is very important.

 

I would also say that it takes a lot of patience and endurance as a father and as a business owner. Endurance is needed because this is definitely a long game, and sometimes you have to think about events coming three or five years from now. You definitely want to take the time to enjoy the moment you’re in right now, but on the other hand, you have to be very intentional and proactive. Otherwise, you’ll wake up one day and wonder, what in the world happened?

 

I’ve always heard that children teach you patience, and as a leader, patience is incredibly important. People can be a blessing and a curse, and sometimes the patience that you have makes all the difference when it comes to which category you place them in. You definitely want to always stay positive and see the good in every situation, no matter how bleak it may appear.

 

If you have any questions, contact us online or give us a call at 540-483-9382.

 

What If You Have a Problem with Our Service?

What happens if there’s a problem with the service that you received from Wisler Plumbing? Of course, we try not to have this happen very often, but we’re definitely not a perfect team. We understand that there are occasions when a client will be dissatisfied.

 

The most important thing to discuss is the type of company that we are. It’s vital to us that we have satisfied customers. Therefore, we have a 100% satisfaction guarantee. That term can get thrown around very loosely, but to us it means that we’re truly committed to making sure that you are completely happy with the work that we did.

 

It’s also important that we call and verbalize our commitment to satisfaction. Sometimes clients might think that they are just being picky or mean. But we won’t know that something went wrong unless we are told. That’s why we try to make followup calls and correspond with our clients after every visit. I also send a followup letter and give my personal cell phone number to make sure that I’m available for contact if necessary.

 

Even though we try to do a good job of followup, it’s possible that sometimes we’ll miss the mark. Therefore, I can’t stress this enough: contact us immediately if you have any issue with the work that we’ve done. When we receive a client concern, it becomes the number one priority for our company. We will try to answer that need/call as soon as possible to provide resolution. Even if we have other people on our schedule, we’ll make sure that non-emergencies or issues that aren’t urgent are moved to a later time so we can take care of a dissatisfied client.

 

Our warranties really are about no small fine print. In other words, if we’ve warrantied an item, there will be no additional cost to you if something happens during that period. (You might be used to dealing with other warranties where the technician will look at your problem but there are still additional charges to fix the item under warranty.) At the end of the day, we need to step up to the plate and take responsibility if there are any unexpected issues.

 

We have 20 standards at Wisler Plumbing that we try to live by every day. One of those standards says that we stand behind our work. It can be very frustrating for a homeowner if they do business with someone who is defensive or unreachable after work was done. We think that it’s our imperative to take responsibility. We’ll be there for you, even if something goes wrong.

 

If absolutely anything happens after we’ve done work for you, get in contact with us. We’ll make it a priority to take care of your situation immediately. If you have any questions, reach out to the team at Wisler Plumbing by contacting us online or giving us a call at 540-483-9382.

 

White Residue on Pots? Here’s What It Means

Wisler Plumbing offers a 14-day water treatment installation guarantee

If you see white residue on the bottom of your pots and pans after boiling water, that’s calcium from hard water. It’s going to leave behind what looks like chalk or even more of a white powder. If there’s hardness or calcium in the water, it’s dissolved and you cannot see it. However, any time the water is heated, the calcium will become a solid. That solid is going to settle and accumulate on the bottom of the pot or pan.

 

The most important thing to realize is that just with a little bit of water and some time, the same exact thing that’s happening in your pans will happen in your water heater. Because of the heat that’s introduced to the water, the calcium will solidify (become a solid) and settle to the bottom. That’s why it’s so important to flush your water heater in order to remove the calcium residue. In a pot it’s a very small amount, but in a water heater the large chunks of calcium can actually almost look like popcorn if left over a long enough period of time.

 

If you flush the water heater on an annual basis, it cleans all that hardness through the hose and prevents the water heater system from experiencing premature failure. I always like to use the analogy of residue in pots and pans (or even coffee maker reservoirs) to demonstrate what’s happening in the water heater. The same chalky residue that shows up in pans is going to build up in your plumbing components.

 

If you see chalky white residue, reach out to the team at Wisler Plumbing today by contacting us online or giving us a call at 540-483-9382. We can perform a water test and determine if it would be a good idea to get a water softener. Of course, even if you already have a water softener, water heater manufacturers still recommend that the system is flushed once a year. It makes sense because holding water in the tank acts as a settling area. It’s very important to flush it out periodically.

 

What Homeowners Can Expect When Choosing Wisler Plumbing for a Remodeling Project

Cyndi DeNeal Remodeling Sales at Wilser Plumbing

Some homeowners in the area don’t know that we do bathroom and kitchen remodeling. We actually do quite a bit of these kinds of projects (around 90 a year). Let’s highlight some of what’s involved in the process that we take from start to finish.

 

We start off with a remodeling specialist, Cyndi, who comes to the home. She’s actually a certified interior designer as well, so she’s very much in tune with the aesthetics of what makes a home look nice. When she comes over for the first time, she does what we call a discovery visit. This is when she gathers information about the needs and wants of the client. (We wouldn’t want to jump right out of the gate and start giving recommendations because it’s very important that we listen to our client first.) At that initial meeting, we would schedule a return visit to come back and present several different options that fit the needs and wants of the client.

 

When it comes to remodeling, sometimes a husband and wife might have different ideas about what they want. We try to blend options together and make the best of both worlds if there are different people involved. We would want to bring back drawings or sketches to give a visual representation of what the options look like. There would also be a preliminary contract or budget set, and we would hope that the client would be able to narrow their choices down to one option along with some small changes.

 

After narrowing the choices down and giving a commitment to one of those options, we like to follow through with a selection day. This is where Cyndi would go out with the client to pick out colors and materials. It would be the time to select cabinets, plumbing fixtures, tile, paint, etc., and Cyndi is immensely helpful in this area. Then we’ll do our final project layout, which is where we finalize the contract and proposal, making sure that we have the final drawings completed. We’ll come back to the client’s home and present these items, making sure that there’s nothing missing and everyone is on the same page about the project.

 

After that, we do our handoff meeting, which is where Cyndi hands everything off to our project manager, Tom. They will meet onsite at the customer’s home, walk through the proposed project with the homeowner, and make sure that all the details are covered. This is when the project’s execution happens and the project manager completes the entire remodel. Then there’s a completion walkthrough that Cyndi will perform after the project to make sure that everyone is satisfied with the overall results. The project should have met the expectations that the client and designer had in the beginning.

 

Homeowners experience a significant benefit by doing remodeling projects with a plumbing company. It allows you to get some peace of mind in knowing that all the components added to your home will fit together. A big part of a bathroom or kitchen is water and electrical. Being able to do the project with a trade-based company can be very advantageous. If you’re thinking about doing some remodeling in your home and you want to work with an experienced team, reach out to Wisler Plumbing by contacting us online or giving us a call at 540-483-9382.

 

 

 

Why Wisler Plumbing Focuses on Residential

We often get asked to do commercial work, even from our homeowner clients who have an office or business. We have to politely decline because we’re committed to specializing in residential owner occupied homes. Our philosophy is that it’s hard for us to be everything to everybody. We would greatly prefer to put all of our focus and effort into our specialization so that we can be as great as we can possibly be.

 

Commercial and residential clients are very different, and they simply have contrasting needs. Commercial clients are much more centered around price and they don’t really need to know the details. Homeowners, on the other hand, are very concerned about the longevity of their investment, the details of exactly what is going on, and whether or not the work will be harmful to the family in any way. These are two very different mindsets, and as the technicians go into the home, they have to be aware of how to act. It’s very hard for one person to act completely differently in both a commercial and residential setting (especially at a high level).

 

Commercial clients are also frequently hierarchy-based, and we very well might not be talking with the owner of the building. If we’re talking with an agent or manager, they would have very little decision making power. This brings an efficiency issue into the picture that we would have to deal with. If we went to a restaurant and the owner wasn’t there, we would have to come back later. We would make the trip out there and diagnose the issue, but then the decision maker wouldn’t be there to give the go-ahead.

 

It’s not that residential is inherently better than commercial (or vice-versa), but it’s just hard for a plumbing company to be great at both areas. Our company procedures are to come into the home, make sure the client is comfortable with us being in their personal space, make sure that they understand exactly what’s going on, explain why the issue is happening, and discuss what the options are to resolve the issue over the long term. That’s very much what a homeowner is looking for, whereas a manager of a business might have very different priorities because they don’t have any ownership stake.

 

The procedures that we follow don’t align with the priorities of a commercial client, so therefore we choose to put all our effort into serving homeowners. If you’re a homeowner who is looking for residential plumbing help, reach out to the team at Wisler Plumbing by contacting us online or giving us a call at 540-483-9382.

 

10 Low-cost Ways to Spruce up a Kitchen or Bathroom

Here are 10 things that you can do to spruce up your kitchen or bathroom without breaking the bank. Of course, breaking the bank is different for each family. When I think of low-cost items, they are priced at around $500 and under. Compared to a full blown bathroom remodel which will probably run you about $8,000 plus, that’s quite a bit less.

 

1. Faucets

Replacing a bathroom or kitchen faucet can really spice up the area. When it comes to the bathroom, you can replace a polished chrome faucet with a brushed nickel faucet, which is much more common today than it was ten years ago. In the kitchen, a nice pull-out spray really adds a nice look.

2. Toilets

Most people think that a toilet is just a toilet. But a lot of times you don’t realize how dingy and grungy a toilet can get until you put a new one in its place. It really makes a big difference. Some larger toilets start to look faded, and putting in a brighter toilet can really spice up a bathroom quickly.

3. Accessories

Accessories could be items like a toilet paper holder, a hand towel ring, or a hand towel bar. Those types of things can be installed very easily into most homes. You might also want to get them with a finish that matches the decor that you have in the bathroom (e.g., brushed nickel).

4. Framed Mirror

In some bathrooms, there’s a plain mirror that’s stuck to the wall. If that mirror was removed and a framed mirror was put in its place, it could add another item that complements the decor in the room.

5. Cabinets

Cabinets don’t always have to be removed or replaced. Sometimes (if you take your time and really work through the process) you can paint the cabinets along with the rest of the bathroom.

6. Countertops

Kitchen countertops do get a little bit more expensive, but bathroom countertops really aren’t that costly. You can get a cultured marble countertop that already has a sink in it with many different finishes and colors to choose from. They aren’t only available in the marbly look that was very common around ten to fifteen years ago. In my house, for example, we have a brownish speckled honed cultured marble countertop that isn’t shiny. It looks really nice and it’s actually way more economical that most people would think.

7. Kitchen Drains

People often use the kitchen sink more than two or three times a day. As a result, the drains get worn and they just don’t look very nice after a while. Replacing those drains can be an economical way to spice up that kitchen sink area.

8. Tile Backsplash

In the kitchen or bathroom, you could put in a tile backsplash. It would only be four or six inches tall in the bathroom, but you could use decorative tile there. In the kitchen, the backsplash would take up the distance between the countertop and the upper cabinets. It can really set off the kitchen, especially with a little bit of painting. The cost will depend on how large your area is or what kind of material you use for the backsplash.

9. Appliances

Some appliances, like a refrigerator or stove, are really expensive. Dishwashers sometimes aren’t as expensive and might be a somewhat economical choice to improve the look of the kitchen. If the dishwasher is old and grungy from being used often, putting in a new one might be a great option.

10. Lights

Lights can set off any area, whether it’s a kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom. One of the neat things about lighting is that you can really brighten up the room by shining light into a darker corner. You could also put recessed can lighting in a bathroom or kitchen and light up areas around the cabinets. Adding new lights can drastically improve the overall look of the room.

If you want help with your bathroom or kitchen remodel, we have a designer here that can come up with a great design and give you a quote. From there, we have a full crew that does nothing but bathroom and kitchen remodeling. If you have any questions, contact us online or give us a call at 540-483-9382.