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The plumbing system in your home requires regular maintenance and while it’s a lot easier to call a contractor when an emergency occurs, there are certain things you can do on your own and include in your daily routine. Here are simple tips how to handle home’s plumbing issues on your own: Bathroom The bathroom is the place where plumbing issues most likely occur and requires regular maintenance in order to avoid it. Start with the drain – to prevent it from overflowing, you should pour hot water at least once a week. In addition to that apply drain solvent to remove clogs and prevent plumbing damage. Examine faucets on regular basis, as damage to them is very likely to cause a lot of trouble to the fixtures. If you are unable to repair these yourself, schedule a professional visit. Kitchen The garbage disposer and the aerator are the most common reason for plumbing emergencies in the kitchen. First, let’s start with the disposer – before using it, leave cold water to flow through it for at least 30 seconds and also it’s a good idea to use dish detergent to easily remove foul odors. Second the aerator – often low water pressure causes lime buildups and these result in leaks or even additional damage to the home’s plumbing system. It’s also recommended to unscrew it from the faucet and then use a small brush to remove the sediments. Basement The basement is the place where water heaters are located and also the main valves of the plumbing system can be found. No matter whether you do plumbing work in the basement, kitchen or anywhere else in your home, knowing where the main shutoff valve is pretty much essential. However sometimes, it’s located outside the house, near the street. Water heaters require annual maintenance and need to be drained, then flushed in order for the sediment buildups to be removed. Sometimes, depending on the model and type of the heater is much easier to call professionals help with that task. Laundry Room All hoses, pipes and the entire plumbing system located in the laundry room needs to be inspected on regular basis for signs of wear or leakage. In case any repairs are needed, carefully asses the task, as sometimes washing machine repairs are not that easy to perform by DIY enthusiasts. In some cases, you may have to even consider replacing the washing machine with a newer model, as often many of the issues are simply caused by the appliance’s age. Clogged Drains Clogged drains can cause serious damage to the plumbing system and fixing these must be your top priority. Depending on the severity of the clog, a simple drain solvent may do the job. However, if the clog is located near the main sewer line, it may not be that easy to reach out to it. In those cases, professional help is pretty much mandatory. Companies like CW Plumbing Services will save you both time and money with any kind of plumbing emergency you face!
Smartphones and portable digital assistants play a significant role in our daily lives, in the fulfillment of our businesses, communications, and entertainment needs. However, these gadgets carry some negative impacts on our beloved planet. By frequently charging our mobile devices, we are vehemently exhausting our non-renewable energy. The moment we upgrade to the latest trendy tech pieces, our existing handsets will just contribute to the proliferation of electronic wastes on our landfills. As part of our environmental awareness, the best option we have is to opt for greener devices. If not 100% ecological, at least it’s made up of non-toxic substances, complies with the international energy standards, and biodegradable packaging. For this entry, we’ll give you the indicators that a smartphone is not eco-friendly. Low Quality Battery Life If your smartphone doesn't last a day of operation despite of moderate usage, it isn't a green gadget. By using this type of phone, you’ll be spending more electricity on a day-to-day basis. But, since mobile devices these days are feature-packed, it’s not really surprising if you need to recharge your juice more than twice a day, with continuous voice calling, web browsing, and music playback. According to Verizon, at least your phone should include an “energy-efficient charger that knows when the phone is fully charged and automatically reduces the draw of electricity.” Contains Toxic Materials Nature-inspired cellular phones doesn't have harmful elements inside. It shouldn't have mercury, PVCs (polyvinyl chloride) and BFRs (brominated flame retardants). These substances when released to the environment upon disposal becomes contaminants. PVCs are commonly found in plastic phones, since it’s the element used to create cheap mobile casing. BFRs, on the other hand, are agents used to inhibit fire production caused by gadget overheating. Check your mobile documentation if they used toxins such as arsenic, cadmium, and polybrominated biphenyls as these are harmful elements not only to the environment but also to the user. Doesn't Have A Biodegradable Packaging A mobile device that comes with a 100% biodegradable packaging is a green one. If your phone comes with a plastic packaging, its company doesn't have a green initiative. These containers when not recycled, will just add up to the pile of non-biodegradable garbage in landfills. It takes them thousands of years to decompose. On the other hand, paper boxes decay faster upon disposal, and doesn't bring any further harm to our planet. Doesn’t Comply With International Energy Standards Greenpeace released a greener electronics guide, which states that all items should comply with the international energy standards. These items were approved since they don’t emit too much greenhouse gas and proven to be power-efficient. They also have minimum levels of radiation. If your phone’s documentation or packaging doesn't boast of an Energy Star Logo, then it’s because the gadget didn't comply with the requirements provided by the firm. Shorter Product Warranty A nature-inspired product should last for a long period of time and this is an important criterion that you should consider when purchasing any electronic device. Gadgets that have a longer product warranty have longer life span, since it doesn’t break easily, which means less reason to change a device. In opposite, products with shorter cycle are usually made of cheaper materials such as plastic that cannot be sent to recycling facilities to create a new one. These are some of the pointers that you should seriously consider when purchasing a mobile device, as part of your environmental awareness. Electronic wastes, according to a 2013 EPA report, have predominantly reached an alarming rate of almost 2.4 million tons in the United States alone. By owning a green product, in a small way, we are battling against the deterioration of our beloved Earth. What other criteria should we look for in a green smartphone? ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sookie Lioncourt is a British tech writer who is fascinated on technological innovations. She is a self-confessed environmental advocate. Some of her influences are Al Gore and Greenpeace. She loves covering green initiatives of various companies. Follow her on Twitter and connect with Sookie via LinkedIn