Can you name the parts, bonus if you know whats wrong?
Today I am talking about 3 pictures. All three pictures were of plumbing in the San Tan and Power Ranch subdivisions of Gilbert. They all have something in common; they had exceeded their usable life expectancy.
Similar to tires on a car, everything has an average life expectancy. We rate tires with a mileage warranty. With plumbing we focus on 3 things that affect the life of the plumbing system, water quality, quality of the part itself, and install quality.
First is water quality, Arizona water is hard, very hard. The standard scale is 0-20, and many parts of the Phoenix valley range between 18 to 30 and much higher in some locations. Why does this mater? Hard scale acts like sandpaper inside your plumbing scraping away at the walls of the piping and gaskets. Every time you use your faucet the water dries and leaves behind another layer of white mineral deposits to work their destructive magic. The water is also treated with chlorine, which can be corrosive to the metal, plastic, and rubber components causing them to deteriorate and break.
Second is the quality of the parts themselves and system design. Thick high quality metals, plastic and, chemical resistant o-rings and seals will resist damage better than thin easily corroded metals, plastic and, rubber o-rings and seals. The product is only as good as its weakest part.
Third is installation and maintenance. What is best for one customer in one area may not be recommended or necessary for another. This is the area that sets plumbers apart and most homeowners have the hardest time recognizing the difference. When you do not know how something should be, how will you know when the job is done if it is how it should be? Trust, Faith, Hope, Gut….
A poor quality part properly installed and maintained, can and probably will last longer than the best quality part installed wrong and not maintained.
Each week we will be focusing on a subject, reviewing products, or exposing common shortcuts and tactics plumbers’ use that the typical homeowner should know to look for.
Raising the standard one customer at a time.
Erik the plumber