Holiday Emergency Plumbing Repairs You Can Do Yourself!

Your Furnace Doesn’t Feel Hot Enough

Your family and friends are all gathered together at your house to celebrate the holiday, but there’s only one problem: everyone is freezing! Nothing will put a damper on your holiday party quicker than a cold home but with these common furnace problems and remedies you can try to get your party back on track before you call a professional.

  1. Clogged furnace air filter
  2. A clogged air filter is one of the most common furnace issues and can lead to many different problems such as reduced heating abilities, unhealthy air, and, if left untreated long enough, it can lead to furnace failure as well. Luckily it’s pretty easy to fix. Once you locate where your air filter is on your furnace, simply remove the filter, locate the model number on the cardboard frame, and then make a quick trip to your local hardware store for a new one. If the frame of your air filter is plastic, then your filter is likely reusable and you should be able to vacuum it out and replace it back in your furnace. Now turn up the heat and get back to the fun.

  3. Dirty Furnace Burners
  4. Dust or debris can accumulate on your furnace’s burners which can make your furnace run poorly. The easiest way to tell if your furnace burners are dirty is to look at the color of the flames. If the flames are blue and look like they’re burning evenly, then your burner is probably fine. If the flames are yellow, though, then your burner is probably dirty. You can quickly clean your burners with a vacuum cleaner. Just make sure that your furnace is turned off and unplugged first.

  5. Something Blocking Your Vents
  6. Take a quick walk around the house and make sure that nothing is covering your vent openings. This might seem silly, but curtains, furniture, or even your guests’ belongings might be blocking one of your vent openings preventing your furnace from functioning as well as it can.

A poorly functioning furnace is an inefficient furnace. Keeping your furnace in good shape will do a lot to help you save on energy bills.

Plunger with Christmas bows on a toilet

The Toilet Won’t Flush

Toilet clogs are the last thing you want to spend your holiday dealing with. And when you have relatives over, your septic/sewer system is the first thing to notice the extra strain. So, if you’re getting together with the family this holiday season, maybe try these DIY tips to get your plumbing back in order before enlisting the help of us here at Pann Home Services and Remodeling:

  1. The trusty plunger
  2. This might seem obvious, but a plunger is still your best bet for clearing a toilet clog and a flange plunger works the best for toilet clogs if you have one available. Put the plunger in the toilet bowl and push down gently. The first push is to get all the air out of the plunger and if you push too hard, you risk dirty water splashing out of the bowl. After the first push, the plunger should have a pretty good seal and the risk of splashing is less so you can pump the plunger up and down with a good amount of force. Once you think that the clog might have cleared, pull the plunger up hard to break the seal. If the clog is clear the water should rush down the drain. If the water remains in the bowl, either try plunging again or move on to the next fix.

  3. Use a plumbing snake or toilet auger
  4. Some clogs are too big for a plunger to fix which is where the toilet auger comes in. Toilet augers are strong, flexible metal coils that can snake through your pipes to where the clog occurs. Insert the auger into your toilet drain and begin turning the handle clockwise. Once you feel resistance wind the snake back up. If it seems like the clog has loosened, flush the toilet to check. If water continues to back up then reinsert the auger and try again until the clog is clear

  5. Call Someone for Help
  6. Some clogs are just too stubborn for you to fix yourself. If you’ve tried everything you can and you still can’t get your toilet to flush properly don’t let it ruin your holiday. Call in the help of a reliable plumber so you can get back to spending time with your family and friends.

Picture of a home with heat loss percentages

DIY Insulation Tips to Save You Money and Heat

If you’re worried about drafts and heat loss this holiday season, then our insulation tips are right up your alley. These tips are easy to do and can help keep that warmth in your home for your family and friends to enjoy.

  1. Drafty doors and windows
  2. For a temporary solution to drafty doors and windows, you can pick up double draft stoppers from your local hardware store. These fit underneath your door and keep cold air from blowing in underneath.

  3. Insulate your outlets
  4. Most hardware stores carry foam pads that can be installed behind your wall outlet or switch plates. This might seem like a small change, but installing them on outside walls can do a fair amount to decrease drafts.

  5. Insullate your attic
  6. Hot air always rises and your home can lose a lot of heat if your attic isn’t insulated. This one might be a little hard to do yourself, but a professional heating or remodeling company can certainly help and save you money on your future electric bills.

If you feel uncomfortable performing any of these tasks, contact a professional to solve the problems. Most reliable heating, plumbing and remodel companies offer