Trust the professionals with your plumbing needs. Here at Allbritten, our plumbers handle all types of plumbing issues, from leaking pipes to broken water heaters to dripping faucets. There’s no job too simple or too complex for our team of experts! For emergency plumbing services here in Fresno and the Central Valley, call our team today. We’re ready to help.

Prevent future issues with water heater maintenance this winter

Left to its own devices, your home’s water heater will likely continue to provide your home with hot water. However, did you know that preventative water heater maintenance can lower your energy costs and help you avoid water heater issues down the road? In about 30 minutes, you can quickly maintain your water heater and ensure that it continues to operate safely and effectively.

Allbritten is here for all your water heater repair and plumbing service needs. For service throughout Fresno and the Central Valley, call us today.

Flush your water heater

Throughout the year, sediment and corrosion begin to collect at the bottom of the water heater’s tank. When enough of this material is present in the tank, it can begin to have a negative impact on its energy efficiency by blocking the heating element from effectively heating the tank’s water. The best way to remove this built up sediment is by flushing your water heater at least once-per-year.

An Allbritten technician performs water heater maintenance on a water heater here in Fresno, CA.First, you’ll want to turn the water heater off and turn off the power (gas or electricity, depending on what type of system you have) to the water heater. Then, turn off the cold water intake valve. Inside your home, have one of the faucets running hot water. Connect a hose to the valve at the bottom of the water heater tank, and have that hose routed to a large bucket or barrel that can hold the water from the tank. Drain the tank and—once empty—turn that cold water supply back on and run it through the tank to wash out any remaining sediment.

Once this process has been completed, close the valve and move onto the next step: testing your water heater’s pressure-relief valve.

Check the pressure-relief valve

The emergency pressure-relief valve is a critical safety component for your water heater. The water inside of the water heater tank is held under pressure. If this pressure starts to climb—usually, due to the water temperature rising—the purpose of the pressure-relief valve is to release air and water from inside the tank to lower the internal pressure back down to acceptable levels.

For obvious reasons, a faulty pressure-relief valve is bad news for your water heater tank. Without the ability to discharge it, pressure can build to the point of the tank bursting open, flooding your home with water.

As a homeowner, you should double-check that this valve is working at least once every year. All you need to do is position a bucket beneath the valve and then flip it to the open position. Hot water from the tank should come out of the valve. If it doesn’t, there’s a good chance that something is wrong with the valve and that it needs to be replaced. You’ll need to bring in a professional plumber for help with this task.

Make sure that you end this test by moving the valve back to the closed position.

Inspect the anode rod

Your water heater’s anode rod plays a crucial role in protecting the longevity of your water heater. The anode rod attracts and collects corrosion away from the inside walls and heating element of the tank. Over time, this rust starts to eat away at the rod. A spent anode rod will look as if it has dissolved away.

If your anode rod has been dissolved, it’s a good sign that your water heater might be nearing the end of its life and need to be replaced. Without the sacrificial anode rod in place, the corrosion and rust will start to impact the rest of the system over time. In the event your water heater’s anode rod is still mostly intact, however, you might want to talk to a local plumber about having a new anode rod installed in its place. Doing so can help prolong the life of your water heater.

For water heater maintenance here in Fresno, call us

At Allbritten, our plumbing team specializes in water heater service and replacement. We assist local homeowners here in Fresno and the Central Valley with their water heater maintenance needs. If you need us to repair or maintain your water heater, call us today. We’re ready to help!

Here are five ways to conserve water and make your home more water-efficient

Here in California, there is no natural resource more precious than water. For many years, many Californians took water for granted. However, the prolonged drought, intense wildfires, and declining reservoirs here in the state have led many homeowners to rethink their choices and start making water-efficient upgrades to their home. Here in Fresno, more and more people are taking steps to conserve water by lowering their personal household use and switching to more efficient fixtures and appliances.

In this article, we’ll review some of the best steps you can take to save water at home. By doing so, you’ll not only play your part in conserving water for our future, but you’ll also lower your utility bills. For more information about making plumbing upgrades and repairs in your Fresno home, contact the team here at Allbritten.

Conserve water by upgrading your home’s plumbing

The best way to conserve water is by using less of it every single day. By making water-friendly upgrades to your bathroom and kitchen, you can reduce the amount of water you and your family use while showering, doing dishes, or using the bathroom. From there, you’ll be able to watch the water savings really add up.

A low-flow showerhead in a local home.

Installing a low-flow showerhead is one of the best ways to conserve water in your home.

Install low-flow showerheads

A daily shower is one of the biggest uses of water in the home. The average American uses about 17 gallons of water when they shower.

So, how can you cut down on your water usage while showering? Our recommendation is that you install a low-flow showerhead. These showerheads reduce the flow of water. Combined with limiting your total shower time to about 5 minutes, these showerheads can cut your shower’s water consumption down to 10 gallons—a major improvement over that national average.

Low-flow showerheads are available in most hardware and department stores. Look for those that are certified by the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) WaterSense program. Showerheads with this label are the best at conservation. Paired with a shower timer, a low-flow showerhead is one of the simplest and most-effective ways to cut your water use.

Replace your toilet

In most homes, the toilets are the largest users of water. If your home has older toilets that are original to the home’s construction, they could be wasting a great deal of water: older, standard toilets use about 3.6 gallons per flush! It’s highly recommended that you upgrade to a low-flow or dual-flush toilet. Low-flow toilets use about 1.5 gallons per-flush, which is half that of an older toilet. Dual-flush toilets are an increasingly popular option. They have two settings: one for a half-flush and one for a full flush.

If you’re thinking about replacing your toilet, be sure to talk to our plumbers here at Allbritten. We can help ensure that your new toilet will fit in your bathroom with your current pipes and fixtures. Our team handles the installation to ensure that the toilet is installed right and will start saving water right away.

Fix faucet leaks and running toilets

When it comes to dripping faucets and running toilets, it’s easy for busy homeowners to put off making the repairs until “later.” However, even small leaks can result in big water waste: a faucet that drips 20 times per-minute will waste more than a gallon of water every single day, adding up to nearly 700 gallons over the course of a year. A running toilet is even worse, as many can waste a gallon of water every hour! The USGS has a calculator you can use to determine how much water your leaky faucets are wasting in your home.

When you notice a faucet is dripping or a toilet just won’t stop running, call your local plumbing team here at Allbritten. Being proactive on these issues can greatly reduce water waste and lower your water bills.

Make water-wise choices

Once you’ve upgraded your shower and toilet and fixed any leaking faucets in your home, you can take further steps to further conserve water.

Capture and use cold water from the shower

Of all the water used while showering, a hefty percentage of it is wasted when you’re not yet even in the shower. Many homeowners turn on the shower but wait to get in until the water “heats up”—which involves the hot water traveling to the showerhead. During this time, all the cold water is being wasted.

An easy way to change this is by keeping a large bucket next to your shower. Collect the cold water from the shower in that bucket and then use that to:

  • Water indoor plants
  • Water outdoor plants
  • Clean your floors
  • Fill up outdoor pet water bowls
  • Clean bathtubs or sinks
  • Wash your car

Water conservation is something that impacts us all. By upgrading your home’s toilets, showers, and appliances and using less water, you’ll play your part in preserving California’s reservoirs and natural beauty.

Run the dishwasher or washing machine only when full

Your dishwasher and washing machine both use a large amount of water and energy. The fewer times you run each during the week, the more water and electricity you’ll conserve. Wait until the dishwasher or washing machine are completely full before starting the run cycle. In addition to helping you save water, this often helps both appliances run more efficiently: many dishwashers, for instance, are designed to run with dirty dishes in them.

The dishwasher itself uses about 25 gallons every run cycle, but homeowners often add to this water use by rinsing off dishes ahead of time. If you scrape dishes into the trash instead of rinsing them before loading, you can save up to 10 gallons of water.

If you have an older dishwasher or washing machine, you may also want to look into upgrading to a newer model that uses less water and energy. High-efficiency washers, for instance, use 40% less water than older models! A great place to start your search is on the ENERGY STAR website, which can guide you to appliances that use less (and wash your clothes better).

Replace your real grass with fake grass

Every year, billions of gallons of water are wasted on natural lawns in the United States. In a state like California, this helps contribute to drought problems. Replacing your natural grass lawn with a synthetic one will not just conserve water, but save you the effort and cost involved in maintaining a natural lawn.

Here are some other great ways to reduce your water use when it comes to your outdoor landscaping:

  • Plant drought-resistant trees and plants: Ask your local nursery about local options and trees native to where you live. Typically, these grow better and use less water than non-native species.
  • Use mulch around trees: Mulch prevents the rapid evaporation of water, allowing the tree’s roots to soak in more of it. This means you can use less water on the tree.
  • Watering by hand: If you have a garden, it’s better to water by hand than to water using an automated system.

For more water-efficient plumbing upgrades, talk to our team

At Allbritten, our team specializes in plumbing installation and repairs. After all, we’ve been serving homeowners in Fresno since 1932. We’re the team to help your home save water and energy. For more tips and ideas on how to conserve, contact us today.

Do demand-type water heaters actually save energy?

Every Fresno homeowner wants to save money on their home’s utility bills. The challenge is often knowing where to start, and what upgrades will actually help you save. Our team often gets questions about tankless water heaters—also known as demand-type water heaters or instant water heaters—and whether or not they actually help homeowners save money. In most cases, they can!

In this article, we’ll review demand-type water heater efficiency and why you should consider upgrading to a more efficient water heater. For all your water heater repair, service, and replacement needs here in Fresno, be sure to call our team.

A demand-type water heater can provide your home with limitless hot water.What are demand-type water heaters?

These systems are known by several names: demand-type water heaters, tankless water heaters, instantaneous water heaters, or electric demand water heaters. No matter what they are called, these systems all generally work the same: the water heater runs water past several internal heating elements, rapidly raising the temperature of the water “on demand.”

Demand-type water heaters are different from standard, “tank” water heaters in several key ways:

  • They do not store heated water in a storage tank and instead heat it as it’s needed in the home. This reduces their overall physical footprint. In fact, most demand-type systems are wall-mounted.
  • Unlike a standard water heater, they cannot “run out” of hot water, since they are heating hot water as needed and not storing it ahead of time.
  • With no tank, there is no risk of the water heater leaking or bursting near the end of its life.

An energy-efficient source of hot water for your home

According to data collected by the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE), heating water is the second largest utility expense in the average American home, representing about 14-18% of your annual energy costs. In real dollars-and-cents terms, this is about $400-$600 every year.

A demand-type water heater is anywhere between 8-34% more energy efficient than a standard one. On average, homeowners who upgrade to a tankless system save about $100 per-year. For large homes and families with an even higher rate of daily hot water use, those savings can be even more.

How is this possible? Unlike a regular water heater, a demand-type system doesn’t store hot water. As hot water sits in the tank of a hot water heater waiting to be used, heat energy is being lost through the walls of the tank, and the heating element needs to constantly be keeping it warm enough for when it’s called upon at the faucet, shower head, or dishwasher. This wastes energy, especially if the tank walls are not sufficiently insulated against heat loss. Demand-type systems avoid this altogether by heating the water as it is needed, avoiding the need for standby heating and reheating.

Is a demand-type water heater right for your home?

While they are more energy-efficient and convenient, demand-type water heaters do often cost more upfront than standard water heaters. Here are some things to consider if you’re weighing the decision to upgrade:

  • Longevity: While they do cost more to initially install, most tankless water heaters can last anywhere from 2 to 2.5 times as long as a standard water heater. This alone may offset their higher upfront cost, especially if you and your family are planning on staying in your home for the foreseeable future.
  • Energy Source: There are many different types of demand-type water heaters. Some use natural gas or propane to heat the water, while others use electricity. Generally, gas tankless water heaters with an intermittent ignition device are going to be the most efficient for your home.
  • Rebates: USDOE notes that there may be state, local, and utility company rebates available to help offset some of the costs associated with installing high-efficiency water heaters. For more on this, be sure to call our team to review your options.

Getting the right system for your home

USDOE recommends hiring an experienced plumbing contractor to handle the installation of your demand-type water heater. At Allbritten, our experienced plumbing team can help you find the right water heater for your home and water heating needs. We carry a wide variety of energy-efficient tankless and standard water heaters.

Beyond that, as BPI-certified energy audit and home energy upgrade specialists, Allbritten can help you find even more ways to save on your water heating energy costs. Some of our common recommendations for local homeowners include:

  • Lowering the temperature of the water heater to 120 degrees.
  • Upgrading to an efficient, water-conserving dishwasher and washer.
  • Installing low-flow shower heads, faucets, and other fixtures.

For the very best in local home services and energy-efficiency expertise, contact Allbritten.

Why you should consider water purification for your home

Did you know Fresno ranks as the 11th worst city in the United States for water cleanliness? Agricultural runoff is a major cause of our poor water quality, including elevated levels of nitrates and arsenic. Fortunately, there are measures you can take to improve the water flowing into your home—including water purification through a whole-home filter.

You use the water in your home on a daily basis—whether it’s for plumbing, cooking, showering, or laundry . You shouldn’t do any of those things with dirty or unhealthy water. Even if your water looks or tastes clean, experts recommend installing a whole-home water filtration system to ensure you’re receiving fresh, purified water. To accomplish this, you must go much further than simply attaching a store-bought water filter to your tap.

For real results and cleaner water, have the professional team at Allbritten improve your home’s water with a HALO whole-home filtration system. Allbritten is your trusted source for plumbing, cooling, heating, and water filter needs here in Fresno. Call us for a free quote on a new HALO water filtration system.

Water purification in Fresno can help remove harmful contaminants.

A water test can reveal just what is in your home’s day—and why you need water purification here in Fresno and the Central Valley.

Why whole-home water filtration is a necessity

Here in the Central Valley, we are known for our agricultural output. When crops are watered, pesticides, herbicides, and other contaminants make their way into the water supply and into your home. This affects the water you drink, shower in, cook with, and do laundry with. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider a whole-home filtration system:

Improved water quality

The best benefit of a filtration system will be the improved water quality that you’ll be able to see, taste, and feel. You and your family can stay healthy and have great-tasting water with a water filter that works.

Harmful chemicals removed

Our HALO system removes harmful chemicals from attacking your pipes or drains and from finding their way into your drinking water.

Improved appliance/drainage conditions

With hard water and chlorine problems removed, your appliances and drainage systems will work better and experience fewer issues.

Fresno-area residents live near harmful water

Out of the 100 largest cities in the United States, Fresno has been ranked as the 11th worst in terms of water quality. These results cannot be ignored or overlooked—though we live in a beautiful city with some great areas and activities, we also experience the downsides of agricultural runoff. This affects our homes, and it’s our job as homeowners to protect the place we live.

How HALO water purification works

Our advanced HALO water filtration system has multiple levels of filtration, providing you with maximum cleanliness and pure water. The HALO system solves hard water and chlorine problems present in your water, while enacting 5 stages of filtration that work on a molecular level and keep contaminants away from your pipes and appliances while bringing purified water to your drinking glass.

Allbritten’s plumbers have the knowledge to walk you through the process and explain how a whole-home filtration system can greatly improve the quality of your home’s water. We’ll also provide you with a free estimate. When you’re ready to move forward, our team can professionally install the system and continue to provide excellent customer service to you and your family.

Staying healthy and hydrated

You’ll begin seeing the benefits of a whole-home water filtration system from day one. In an area with high chemical runoff and pollutants, you really cannot afford to NOT have a water system set up. Instead of purchasing a $20 water pitcher and hoping for the best, ensure your home is really taken care of by having Allbritten install an industry-leading HALO whole-home water filtration system.

After installation, your water filtration system will be ready to use! Once your water is cleared and cleaned, you can take measures to conserve water in your home to save money on your water or energy bills. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth, and only run full loads in the dishwasher or washing machine. By taking these extra water conservation measures, you can make your water usage more intentional.

The benefits of cleaner water

An advanced HALO system, installed by the professional plumbers at Allbritten, will soften water, clear sediment and chemicals, remove scaling, pollutants, and rust. Cleaner water means less chance of illness or disease. With HALO, you’ll not only have better drinking water, but your appliances—such as your washing machine, dishwasher, and water heater—will last longer and run better without hard water buildup. The choice is clear—put your health and happiness first by calling us at Allbritten today and learning more about your water options.

A home maintenance budget and plan can help protect your cooling and heating systems

Our best tips from our plumbers in Fresno for avoiding plumbing problems

There are few things scarier to the average homeowner than plumbing problems. Some are minor in nature, and relatively easy for a homeowner with access to basic tools and YouTube to address. Such problems include changing out a sink fixture or fixing a leaking faucet. Many other plumbing problems, however, require professional intervention. When you need plumbers in Fresno, you need to call Allbritten right away.

For expert plumbers in Fresno and the Central Valley, call Allbritten!In this article, we’ll review our top-4 tips for avoiding plumbing catastrophes in the home, and what you should be on the lookout for here in Fresno and the Central Valley.

Our best tips for avoiding plumbing problems here in Fresno

Before examining the types of issues that only a trained plumbing expert can resolve, it can be helpful to understand the ways you can avoid plumbing repairs. A few basic preventative measures can go a long way towards avoiding common drain issues.

1. Keep an eye on specific plumbing areas

There are a few key areas in and around your home that you should keep an eye on year-round so you can catch any potential plumbing problems before they occur. Toilets, water heaters, and outdoor faucets should all be periodically inspected to ensure there are no leaks, cracks, or other damage.

Our recommendation is that you build a home maintenance checklist that includes several plumbing items. Go through the checklist quarterly or, if you have the time, on a monthly basis. A little preventative maintenance and upkeep can go a long way toward preventing a plumbing disaster. Or, at the very least, you can spot the problem and call Allbritten for plumbers in Fresno before the issue gets worse.

2. Be particularly aware of aging pipes and fixtures

Depending on the age of your home, your pipes might be nearing the point where they could encounter problems. It’s important to keep an eye out for small leaks as the owner of an older home. Leaks are caused by several factors. First, it’s possible that the pipe material itself has started to corrode or break down, which probably means that you’ll need to re-pipe your home in the near future.

Another thing many homeowners encounter is a clogged pipe, or—in particular—a clogged sewer drain. This occurs because years of grease and other food waste has formed a clog in the pipe. This, in turn, causes all sorts of problems, ranging from increased pipe pressure to, in a worst-case scenario, a sewer line blockage.

If you suspect that your home’s pipes are having issues, turn off the water and call Allbritten immediately so that our plumbers can inspect and determine what the problem is. Pipe repair and replacement is not a DIY project: even a small mistake in this area could be catastrophic for your home.

3. Replace aging water heaters

As water heaters age, there are a number of problems that can manifest. First, it’s entirely possible that the anode rod has been spent and that corrosion is now attracted to the tank structure and shell itself. This can weaken the tank, putting your water heater at risk of springing a leak or—in a worst-case scenario—bursting entirely, releasing a torrent of water into your garage and home.

Our plumbers can help with a number of fixes. First, if your water heater is less than ten years old, an anode rod replacement may be feasible. However, if the corrosion has progressed to the tank walls, we’ll probably recommend, and help you with, a water heater replacement. When it comes to new water heaters, you have options: you can switch to a new standard, tank replacement unit, or upgrade to a tankless water heater. To get an overview of what you should do next, give us a call today!

4. Get the help of a professional when you’re in over your head

Arguably the most important thing you can do to prevent a plumbing disaster is to recognize when you’re out of your element. Many homeowners can tackle simple plumbing fixes, such as unclogging a drain. But, anything more complicated than that should really be handled by a professional, certified plumbers here in Fresno. Trying to fix a complex, tough plumbing issue on your own can ultimately cause more harm than good.

When you’re facing down a plumbing problem that needs a fast resolution, call in the professionals here at Allbritten. Our plumbers in Fresno are ready to help with all your home plumbing needs, from faulty water heaters to leaking pipes. Contact us today for fast, reliable service. And be sure to check our our specials for digital coupons and ways to save.

If you live in Fresno, better-tasting water is within reach

Nothing is more satisfying than a cold glass of water on a hot day. However, what happens when you notice that the liquid coming out of your tap is not so refreshing after all? A bad taste may indicate the presence of contaminants or dissolved minerals. Here in Fresno, we’re known for our poor water quality. For better-tasting water here in the Central Valley, call Allbritten!

Our team installs water filtration and water softener systems here in Fresno. This results in great-tasting water, straight from your tap. This allows you and your family to cut back on the number of water bottles you buy. For an estimate, call our team today!

Better-tasting water means better tasting food.

Filtered water not only improves the taste of water, but can improve the taste of food prepared using that water.

Potential problems with your tap water

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets standards on water safety. There are a mind-boggling 90 contaminants with legal limits in the water you drink every day, not counting those currently unregulated. Not all have a limit of zero, so it is no wonder that it may not always taste good.

The flavor of the liquid coming out of your tap is also dependent on the type you have. Soft water is typically considered the better-tasting water. Hard water—which most homes here in Fresno have—often contains higher-than-normal levels of magnesium and calcium. Although not dangerous to drink, it often has a distinct unpleasant odor and taste.

In addition to a bad taste, contaminated or hard water can cause other difficulties for your home. It makes showering less efficient, leaving soap scum on the tub and on you. Residue can clog pipes and decrease the effectiveness of appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines.

Your options in water filtration systems

The best Fresno water filtration system is the one that fits you and your specific needs. One option is to have a professionally installed whole-house filtration system. The benefit of this type of structure is that it filters out contaminants and neutralizes hard water without the need for added sodium.

Two other options include in-line filtration or a water heater guard. An in-line system is fitted onto pipes to reduce corrosion and buildup. The water heater guard protects your heater from a buildup of sediment that decreases the longevity of the appliance.

For better-tasting water in Fresno, call Allbritten

Still not sure which option is right for you? At Allbritten, we offer a range of Fresno water filtration choices tailored to your needs and those of your home. Call us today to learn more about how a customized system increases efficiency and offers you the pleasure of better-tasting water.

Here’s why we value our HVAC technicians and plumbers

Allbritten has served Fresno and the Central Valley since 1932. In all those years, we’ve learned how to put together a phenomenal team of people. To give our customers the best experience, we need to hire the best. That’s why Allbritten has friendly HVAC technicians and plumbers on our team, ready to help homeowners with their cooling, heating, and plumbing issues.

In this blog, we’ll review some of the reasons and ways we aim to hire the very best here in Fresno and the Central Valley. If you’re ready to work with a team of passionate professionals, it’s time to call Allbritten.

Training for business, teaching for life

We are dedicated to giving our staff the tools they need to succeed. That’s why we provide our HVAC technicians and plumbers with extensive training in their trades. We would never send a technician to your home who isn’t prepared to do the job properly. We think too highly of our customers, and we think too highly of Allbritten techs not to give our best.

Of course, our in-house training is just the tip of the iceberg. Our team also receives top-notch training from Carrier—we are, after all, a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer—and our home performance experts are BPI-certified.

Compensating fairly for quality work

Sure, we could undoubtedly find cheaper labor than the top-notch people we employ. However, we believe in the old saying, “You get what you pay for.” Allbritten employees are paid fairly and given the opportunity to advance within the company. If investing in our team means providing our customers with the best possible services and products, it’s worth it. Judging by our customer reviews, we think it is.

Showing respect breeds respect

Albritten employees are renowned throughout the Central Valley for the courtesy they show our customers. When an Albritten technician enters your home, you will know that he or she understands what a great privilege the invitation represents. We demonstrate the meaning of respect to our employees every day.

Here’s a small gesture that goes a long way: before entering your home to work on your air conditioning or heating system, our technicians will put on protective blue booties over their shoes, so as to not dirty your floors. We believe in doing this because we, and our employees, respect your business and value your home.

Building pride in everything we do

We’ve always taken pride in what we do. For our team, home services isn’t just another job: it’s a career, and it’s a profession we’d be proud to pass down to our own children. We know our customers rely on us to understand our trade and to be professional at all times. That’s we let our employees know how much we value them, and we expect them to pass that value to our customers.

At Albritten, by putting our HVAC technicians and plumbers first, we make sure that our customers come first. Contact us today and let our team prove its level of commitment by doing what we do best—serving you.

Interested in working with the Allbritten team? Look at our current openings and apply online.

Here’s how tankless water heaters work

By now, you’ve probably heard about some of your friends and family investing in something for their home called a “tankless water heater.” Also known as a “Demand-Type Water Heater,” these systems are becoming increasingly popular with Fresno and Central Valley homeowners.

In this blog, we’ll explore the reasons why more and more local homeowners are making the switch to tankless systems. To learn more, or to make the switch yourself, contact Allbritten! We’re your local plumbing experts! (559) 292-4919

An endless hot water supply

Tankless water heaters, as the name suggests, do not have a tank in which they store hot water for eventual use by you and your family. Instead, a “tankless” system is a heating element connected to a water line. As hot water is needed, the line sends water through the system, rapidly heating it to the desired temperature.

Since the water heater isn’t storing a limited supply of water for use later and only heating it as needed, it can supply a virtually unlimited supply of hot water. This is useful for large families that go through a lot of hot water in a single period of time, such as when people are getting ready in the morning.

However, no matter what size your family is, this other benefit applies to you.

Saving money, both today and tomorrow

Tankless water heaters are more energy-efficient than their standard counterparts. Since they’re only heating water as it’s needed, there’s less energy wasted. All-in-all, one of the chief benefits of a tankless system is that they can significantly cut down on the gas or electricity used in your home, which in turn slashes your monthly energy bills.

Yet, that’s not all. These systems also last longer than standard water heaters; in some cases, a tankless unit can have double the lifespan of a regular water heater. While the upfront cost of a tankless system is typically higher than that of a regular unit, bear in mind that you may have to purchase two water heaters in the same lifespan of one tankless.

Safety and space-savings

As you probably know by now, tankless water heaters do not have a tank. Here’s another benefit to that: the water heater tank burst—a scenario dreaded by homeowners for decades—is out of the equation. There’s no more need to have that stressful thought in the back of your mind, and there’s no putting a price on that.

One final benefit: most tankless water heaters are wall-mounted in your garage, utility closet, or elsewhere. This frees up floor space in some of the most valuable and crowded parts of your home.

To learn more about how tankless water heaters work, call Allbritten!

Allbritten is your source for local, trusted plumbers here in Fresno and the Central Valley. We repair and install tankless systems, as well as standard ones.

To learn more or to get started on a quote for a new demand-type unit, contact us today, or give us a call at (559) 292-4919.

Hard water: What is it, and why do you need a water softener?

Most people take the water that comes out of their tap for granted. Beyond the other stuff that can be in your home’s drinking and potable water, there’s something else you need to think about: hard water. Here in Fresno, our exceptionally hard water makes a water softener a necessity.

A water softener treats a hard water problem by removing the buildup of minerals that can damage your  home’s plumbing. It effectively removes the minerals such as calcium and magnesium carbonates through an ion exchange process. The device can increase the lifespan of the plumbing fixtures, and reduce plumbing repair costs.

In this article, we will take a look at some of the reasons why it’s important to soften hard water by installing a water softener.

Hard water buildup and water softenerWhat is hard water?

Thanks to gravity, water is always on the move. In rivers, it can carve canyons and create valleys. Underground in aquifers and wells, water slips between rocks. All that time, the water is brushing against rock, scraping off minerals such as calcium and magnesium. It’s the presence of minerals that makes water “hard” as opposed to “soft.”

Does Fresno have hard water?

Yes, we do. Here in Fresno, our water, on average, is 122 parts-per-million. According to the scale developed by the Water Quality Association, that means our water here in town is classified as “hard.”

If your home’s water is drawn exclusively from underground sources, your water might even be harder than that. That’s because aquifer sources are typically “harder” than surface water sources.

So, what’s the problem?

First, let’s clear something up: there’s no health risk for you and your family as a result of hard water. (Although, there’s other reasons you should consider a whole-home water filtration system). However, hard water can do a number on your home’s plumbing and appliances. Let’s explain why.

As mineral-rich hard water passes through the pipes and plumbing of your home, those minerals leech out of the water and stick to the inside of the pipe. Over time, this results in the buildup of calcium commonly known as “scale”. 

What else does hard water impact?

The flow of water in your home can be reduced because of this blockage in the pipe. The result is that you’ll need to re-pipe your home—an expensive proposition—a lot sooner than you would have otherwise. It’s a major problem here in Fresno.

However, that’s not all. Those minerals are also being pumped into your dishwasher and washing machine every time you use them, causing damage and reducing the lifespan of your appliances.

Your water heater is particularly vulnerable. After all, it has water inside of it at all times. Mineral buildup can negatively impact the anode rod, and deposits of just 1/16 of an inch can negate your water heater’s energy-efficiency, increasing your home energy costs.

Hard water impacts your home comfort

The wrong type of water can have major impacts on your home’s comfort. Here’s just some of the ways that hard water negatively impacts your home:

  • Your laundry will be stiff and dingy because detergents will not work as well with hard water. In addition, the minerals in the water, over time, wear down the colors in your favorite outfits.
  • Your skin will be drier, itchier, and harder to deal with, and you’ll feel like your hair is under attack. Hard water can aggravate symptoms of eczema.
  • Soap, shampoo, and conditioners will work less effectively and you’ll need to use more of them with each shower to get the same results you would have had otherwise with softened water.

How can a water softener help?

As the name implies, water softeners remove the minerals that make water hard, rendering it soft. Water softeners are popular here in Fresno because of our exceptionally hard water. 

A water softener is a good long-term investment to protect your appliances, water heater, and home plumbing. Plus, it’ll make your skin and hair feel great!

Call Allbritten to learn about our whole-house water treatment systems

At Allbritten, we’re proud to install HALO whole-house water filtration and treatment systems here in Fresno. The HALO 5 system is considered one of the best on the market. It not only operates as a water softener, but also cleans and purifies your water with some of the best technology available.

If you’re interested in learning more about our HALO systems and how your home can drink clean, softened water, call Allbritten at (559) 292-4919 or contact our team online to schedule your free in-home estimate on a new system.