Tag Archives: Construction and Maintenance

Keep hot water running smoothly and save energy this winter

With winter on its way and energy bills going up we could all do with ways of saving money. By making sure that your hot water is running efficiently you could save energy and cash.  Drain Doctor offers a few pointers.

  • A 3-inch (75mm) lagging jacket around the hot water cylinder can help cut weekly heat loss by up to 70 per cent.
  • Modern cylinders are supplied with foam lagging put on by the manufacturer.  Never be tempted to strip off part of the lagging to warm an airing cupboard.  It is cheaper to install a small heater instead.
  • The length of pipe between the hot water cylinder and the hot water tap is known as a dead leg because hot water left in the pipe is cooled and is wasted.  The longer the pipe the more hot water is wasted.  Water at 60oC travelling through a 15mm copper pipe loses heat equivalent to more than one unit of electricity for roughly each 300mm of run per week.  This is enough energy to heat ten gallons of water.  So the shorter the pipe the better.
  • Use a shower for daily bathing and keep the bath for a relaxed soak.  A bath typically uses as much as six times the amount of water a shower does.
  • Heat water only as needed.  Save money and energy by switching on an immersion heater an hour or so before the hot water is needed and then switching it off again when the hot water is not wanted.
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Don’t overlook drain unblocking repairs – you’ll save in the long run

Trust Drain Doctor to solve any plumbing problems.

Never ignore the findings in your building survey when you buy a house. Even the smallest details, if ignored, could end up costing £1,000s.

One thing that surveys highlight is the importance of keeping your drains and gutters cleared and repaired. Leaking gutters can cause all sorts of internal damp problems upstairs, making the internal environment unpleasant at best and a hazard to health at worst. Damp walls are a breeding ground for moulds which can cause respiratory problems.

Leaking drains that carry grey water and rainwater away from the house can cause fundamental structural problems if left. A cracked pipe that leaks water into the soil around the foundations of a home can soften the soil and undermine the foundation of the property leading to subsidence. This can lead to uneven floors and cracks in the structure.

All this was highlighted recently in a Channel 4 programme presented by Sarah Beenie. A couple had been living in a property for 15 years and had noticed subsidence and internal damp problems. They had assumed – wrongly – that the house was teetering over a disused mine shaft. They ignored the problem because of fears over expensive repairs.

The reality was that the drains and gutters were broken, leading to structural problems that we have already mentioned. These things were noted in the property survey but were overlooked. Had they been picked up early on the couple could have saved themselves a lot of cash and a lot of worry.

So, it pays to check drains and gutters regularly and get blockages removed and repairs carried out by a reputable drainage repair company like Drain Doctor as soon as possible to avoid problems later.

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