Frozen Pipes 101: How to Prevent & Resolve Them

Frozen Pipes 101: How to Prevent & Resolve Them

Frozen pipes can be a major problem, causing water damage and creating a costly and time-consuming repair project. It is important to be proactive and prevent pipes from freezing, but it is also helpful to know what to do if they do freeze. At Hansen Super Techs, we have seen frozen pipes and their devastation time and time again. As a result, we provide a comprehensive guide on how to prevent and resolve frozen pipes in your home.

Preventing Pipes From Freezing 

The best way to handle frozen pipes is to prevent them from happening in the first place. Here are a few tips you can implement to prevent your pipes from freezing this winter season. If you are ever unsure of what to do, don’t hesitate to call a plumber in Mobile, AL.

Insulate Pipes

Insulating pipes is the most effective way to prevent them from freezing. Insulation can be found at most hardware stores and can be easily cut to size to fit your pipes. Focus on insulating pipes located in unheated areas, such as the attic, basement, or garage. 

Seal Cracks and Gaps

Cold air can enter your home through cracks and gaps, causing pipes to freeze. Seal any cracks or gaps in your walls, ceiling, and floors with caulk or weather stripping to prevent cold air from entering your home. This may be an overwhelming task for the average homeowner. Thus, we recommend calling a plumber in Mobile, AL to help you with this project.

Keep Your Home Warm

Keeping your home warm during cold snaps is an important step in preventing frozen pipes. Set your thermostat to at least 55°F, even if you are going to be away from home for an extended period of time. This is a key step in preventing the disaster that comes with frozen or burst pipes.

Allow Faucets to Drip

Running water, even a slow trickle, can prevent pipes from freezing. Open your faucets slightly, especially on the side of your home that is exposed to the cold, and allow a small amount of water to flow continuously. This will keep the fluid moving and prevent them from freezing and expanding the pipes to a potential burst.

Disconnect Outdoor Hoses

Disconnecting outdoor hoses from faucets and draining them can prevent water from freezing in the hoses and causing pipes to freeze. Store hoses in a sheltered area, such as the garage or shed, to protect them from the cold.

How to Troubleshoot Frozen Pipes

If you get thrown into the unlucky circumstance of dealing with frozen pipes, you will need to take some steps in order to troubleshoot this problem. Before calling a plumber in Mobile, AL, try one of these steps to help you thaw out those frozen pipes.

Locate Frozen Pipes

First and foremost, you must find where the frozen pipes are located. Usually, frozen pipes are in unheated areas, such as the attic or the garage. You can usually identify frozen pipes by a lack of water flow or by touching the pipes to see if they are cold to the touch.

Apply Heat

Applying heat to frozen pipes can help thaw them. You can use a hair dryer, space heater, or hot towels to warm the pipes. Be sure to use caution when you use a heating device, as it can be a fire hazard.

Open Faucets

Once you have applied heat to the frozen pipes, open the faucets to allow water to flow. This will help thaw the pipes and prevent them from bursting. 

Call a Plumber in Mobile, AL

If you are unable to thaw out the pipes, or if you are unsure of how to resolve the issue, the best thing you can do is contact a plumber. Hansen Super Techs is known for providing prompt and efficient repairs for all your plumbing concerns. Give us a call and experience a quick resolution of your frozen pipes. We are available around the clock for emergency repairs at (251) 227-4441.

Plumbing Challenges to Expect During the Winter

Plumbing Challenges to Expect During the Winter

Though winter is sometimes a welcomed change to the summer heat, it does bring a bit of a challenge to the plumbing systems of our homes. Any wise homeowner does their best to ensure that their home is prepared for any challenges that come their way. As the leading plumbers in Mobile, AL, we at Hansen Super Techs have the privilege of troubleshooting many plumbing issues during winter for the local residents. Below is a quick overview of these challenges and how to prevent them from happening in your home. 

Frozen Pipes Outside the Home

It gets pretty cold in Mobile, AL, and without the proper preventative measures, it is possible to end up with frozen pipes outside the home. Frozen pipes occur when they aren’t winterized appropriately. They easily bring about an instant disaster in the home, especially when they expand and burst. To avoid this, try implementing the following steps:

  • Insulate your pipes and water lines
  • Clear out any debris and drain water out of pipes that won’t be used throughout the winter
  • Adjust your thermostat to 50-55 degrees if you plan on leaving home for vacation or other extended trips
  • Shut off the water valve to any pipe that won’t be used during the winter months

If you don’t feel confident about winterizing your plumbing, call a plumber in Mobile, AL, who will be glad to assist you in this process. 

Frozen Interior Pipes

There is a network of pipes that go into the home, and that also have the potential to freeze. Frozen pipes lead to great water damage, especially if they burst and go undetected for a period of time. To prevent this from happening, we highly recommend doing the following: 

  • Keep the faucets dripping – if you checked the weather forecast and it predicts a temperature dip, we recommend keeping the faucets slightly open to keep a small drip going. This will keep the water flowing and prevent the lines from freezing and bursting. 
  • Insulate pipes – just like we recommended for the exterior pipes, the interior pipes must also be insulated. 
  • Keep warm air circulating around pipes – warm air from your heater will go a long way to keeping your pipes from freezing. Open up the cabinets overnight or whenever the cold spell is predicted to help keep those pipes warm. 

If you notice that you already have a frozen pipe, you will need an emergency plumber in Mobile, AL, to restore it safely. 

Clogs in the Kitchen Drain

If you hosted one or two parties at home over the holiday season, your kitchen drain might still feel the brunt. It may be one small food item away from a clog. A clogged kitchen drain makes the sink inoperable and messy. To avoid this issue, we recommend the following tips: 

  • Clean the disposal on a routine basis. Add this to your weekly kitchen deep clean routine, which will help you avoid those nasty clogs. 
  • Flush out the disposal after each use by letting cold water run for 15 to 20 seconds.
  • Avoid allowing certain foods to go down the drain. The disposal is meant to help accidental foods flush out of the drain. Don’t pour oils, egg shells, chicken bones, veggie peels, or other tough foods into the disposal because you will most certainly get clogged. 

Got a clog in the kitchen that you can’t get to clear? Contact a plumber in Mobile, AL, to assist you with this problem. 

Water Heater Isn’t Keeping Up 

Water heaters get a lot of wear and tear over the winter as they are used more often to keep the home warm. To prevent any issues during the winter with your water heater, we recommend these tips:

  • Schedule a routine maintenance check before the start of winter to ensure that your heater is up to par. This is especially important if you’re expecting company over the winter months because the last thing you need is for your guests to be faced with a cold home or shower during their visit. 
  • Buy a water heater blanket at a local home improvement store to improve the efficiency of your water heater.

Contact a Plumber in Mobile, AL

Do you need help with a plumbing repair? Contact Hansen Super Techs for the best plumbing service in the region at (251) 227-4441.

Signs of a Sewer Leak

Signs of a Sewer Leak

Sometimes plumbing problems occur without us even knowing it. In spite of the fact that these problems can be hidden well, if they are not addressed carefully, they will develop into very large problems. Many plumbing issues, including sewage leaks, are difficult to detect, which delays the necessary repairs. You can see if you have a sewer leak in your Mobile, AL home by reading the following five signs. If you notice any of these signs, you will need to contact a licensed plumber in Mobile, AL

Poor Odors

Poor odors around the house are the first indication of a sewer leak. And when we say poor odor, we really mean the most awful smell known to humankind. The sewer smell is very distinct and when you smell it, you will know something is wrong. 

Long-term leaks can lead to mold growth which also contributes to a bad odor. Have you ever smelled sewer mixed with mold? It isn’t a pleasant smell, to say the least.

It is important to contact a licensed plumber in Mobile, AL if you notice any of these types of odors. Sewage and mold contaminants can cause complications in the upper respiratory system, migraine headaches, and even cognitive decline. 

If you have a bad odor in your house but it isn’t caused by a sewer leak, it may be caused by something else like your AC. Check out our indoor air quality services to learn how we can help improve the air in your home. 

Increased Water Bills

The key truth about sewer leaks is that they require additional water. Consequently, the additional water expenditure will increase your water bills. Of course, by the time you notice the increase, the leak can already make significant damage if it is inside the home or nearby any structures. 

Most sewer leaks can be prevented with a regular plumbing maintenance routine. If you haven’t had a plumbing maintenance visit in a while, contact a local licensed plumber in Mobile, AL to set up a service check. 

Lush Patches of Lawn

Perhaps you’re noticing patches of lush, green grass on your lawn. What could be wrong with that? Well, sewer leaks happen to have just enough fertilizer and water to make the grass grow in luscious patches wherever they happen. That being said, if you see a very green patch of grass, it is best to have it checked out by a plumber to ensure that it isn’t the cause of a leak. 

Wet Floors or Damp Walls

Sewer leaks inside the home often result in wet or damp floors. There is a great deal of damage done to the structure of the floor as a result. When water persists even after mopping, it is most likely caused by a plumbing leak. You almost certainly have a sewage leak if you smell sewers and your floors are wet. However, leaks don’t always happen in sewer lines. Because of this a licensed plumber in Mobile, AL must come to assess the cause of the leak.  

Leaks, no matter what kind, should be investigated as they can lead to very extensive and pricey repairs when neglected. We all know how dangerous mold can be to the home and its occupants, as well as to the health of the home. If water penetrates the walls for too long, mold will certainly develop.   

Increase of Pests

You may not be a fan of sewer smells, but rodents love them. It won’t take long before you’ve got yourself some new tenants you didn’t invite. In addition to rodents, the sewer leak will beacon pests of every kind, including cockroaches, flies, and centipedes who all love moisture. As the leak progresses, the number of pests you find will increase. The leak, no matter how large, needs to be dealt with by a professional before further damage can be done.

Licensed Plumbers in Mobile, AL

Are you noticing any of these signs of sewer leaks on your property? Though the situation may seem chaotic, there is no need to panic. Pick up the phone and contact Hansen Super Techs to get in touch with the best plumbers in the area. We will be able to restore your sewer lines back to order quickly and efficiently. Call us at (251) 227-4441.

What to Expect During Professional Water Heater Repairs

What to Expect During Professional Water Heater Repairs

What to Expect During Professional Water Heater Repairs

Your water heater broke & now the plumber is on the way to perform a much-needed repair. Is there anything you need to do to get ready? What should you expect during and after the repairs? Knowing ahead of time can help relieve concerns you may have for the process.

If the water heater in your home is ten years old or more, repairs may be necessary for the equipment to continue working or may even need to be a replacement. When the work is being done, there are three main things to consider for your home.

Is It Electric?

If your water heater is powered by electricity, the plumber may need to shut it off for a limited amount of time. Gas units equipped in a home require a small amount of electricity to start running. More often than not, it’s only required that the plumber cut power to the specific location of the tank.

Gas Powered Systems

Much like electric units, if your home tank is powered by electricity then the plumber may need to shut off the gas line temporarily. Other natural gas appliances within the home such as dryers, ovens, and furnaces will not be useable until the repairs are complete. Checking each appliance is an important step once the gas line has been turned back on.

Preventative Maintenance

The manufacturer’s manual that came with your water heater system should tell you how often maintenance is needed, but on average it is recommended that it be done once a year. Included in this is usually a sediment flush and testing the anode rod to ensure it is still protecting your system from rust. This helps to provide higher-quality water to your household while keeping your water heater running as efficiently as possible for as long as possible.

If you have a plumbing issue you need taken care of, give Hansen Plumbing a call for fast, friendly, affordable service & repairs!

Strange Toilet Discoveries

Strange Toilet Discoveries

I was rushing around getting ready to head out for the day when BAM! My elbow knocked right into my cell phone & sent it sailing right off the bathroom counter. Yep, you guessed it! Right into the porcelain throne. While I did manage to retrieve it, I did wonder what would happen if it had gotten lost in the pipes below. Would it one day be finally removed & leave the lucky person wondering how it got there?

Strange as it may seem, a cell phone is not that unusual to be dropped in a toilet! Imagine being the one to fish out some crazy things like these true stories!

Intrepid Explorer

South Florida residents, Marian & Lily Lindquist thought they had called a plumber for a typical clogged toilet. When the plumber arrived, they went to work trying to get the stubborn clog out using the common drain snake method. After stepping away for a few moments, the plumber returned to find a surprise hanging out in the bowl. One very inquisitive foot and a half long iguana managed to get himself logged in the pipes! Yikes! Florida, no stranger to finding invasive species in unwanted places.


Residents of Reddish, England had quite the day in May 2014. Police evacuated a cordon of 100m after a bomb was discovered in an outdoor restroom. Disposal experts extracted a three-inch live WWII mortar. It was taken to a cleared area and a controlled explosion was then carried out. Amazingly the device had been there for more than 50 years before it was found. Talk about dropping a bomb in the bathroom!


Imagine going to work as a janitor expecting the same routine as every other day. You walk into the bathroom just knowing there is a mess to clean up and instead find piles of cash stuffed in the john. That is what happened to one Australian janitor who found over $90,000 dollars filling the toilet. A plumber later found another $1000 dollars that had made its way down the pipes. What happened to the money that was found? No one claimed it, after taxes $78,00 of it went to the lucky janitor!

What Should You Do?

Honestly, weird things end up in toilets all the time. Ask any plumber and I am sure you’ll get a crazy story or two! If you happen to have an item go down the drain, don’t try to retrieve it yourself! While it may seem like an easy fix, trying to go after it could cause the item to go further down the drain or cause a more difficult clog to fix.

If you need an expert for repairs, maintenance, or installations, give Hansen Plumbing a call at 251-471-5151!

The Great Debate: Tanked or Tankless

The Great Debate: Tanked or Tankless

The Great Debate: Tanked or Tankless

Choosing the right home improvement options can be a challenge; take the water heater for example. Tank systems have a reputation as energy guzzlers with steady temperatures as long as the water lasts. Tankless are known for being upfront, more expensive, & never get the water hot enough but are very energy efficient. While there is some truth on either side, both types have their pros and cons when considering which one to pick for your home.

Tankless Water Heaters
Also called on demand water heaters, tankless as the name suggests don’t store water but instead only heat what’s needed & only when there is a demand for it. Now the answer is yes, they do cost more upfront to install. Initial equipment cost to the possibility of needing to refit gas lines & pipes for a different system all add into this. The lower operating cost & energy savings from a tankless do add up over time essentially “paying for itself”. Other benefits include a 20 to 30 year lifespan & a very minimal footprint left on the home itself. As drawbacks go, the biggest of this system is its inability to process and create the hot water needed for multiple appliances or showers at a time.

Tank Water Heaters
Standard in most homes, tank systems heat & store water waiting until it’s needed reliably providing what we need for daily use. Most residential tanks come in sizes ranging from 20 to 70 gallons with options for electric or gas power. Models today are being manufactured with newer technology, decreasing operating cost through greater energy efficiency. Points go to tank water heaters for being able to sustain the water needed from multiple sources at once. Installing one is also usually simple, it uses connections the previous tank did. Deciding which to choose comes down to what fits each individual home.To make it a little simpler ask yourself a few questions: How much demand is there going to be by each machine? How many people are going to be using the hot water? What does your budget look like?

Need a hand picking the right one? Hansen Plumbing experts are ready to help! Give us a call today to schedule a consultation 251-471-5151.