Author Archives: Pascale Saliba

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Emergency response plumbers bay area

Emergency Response Plumbers Covid19 and Beyond

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The spread of Covid-19 across the globe has already fueled an abundance of misinformation and rumors. From fake cures to hoaxes, these incorrect tidbits circulating the internet have caused more panic and hysteria. One such rumor is the idea that coronavirus can spread from person to person through plumbing systems, especially in high-rise buildings. However, modern plumbing codes have made such a scenario nearly impossible.

Extra Strain on Plumbing

Because of shelter-in-place orders and other restrictions designed to curb the spread of Covid-19, many residential plumbing systems are under high strain. Although this may increase the chances of sewage backups and other plumbing issues, modern plumbing fixtures and practices exponentially limit the chances of the spread of disease.

The Spread of Covid-19 Through Plumbing Rumor

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, was a viral infection that spread throughout the globe in the early 2000s. Because of the severity of the pandemic and its potential to cause mass fatalities, Covid-19 has been routinely compared to the SARS outbreak. However, one particular instance has caused members of the public to become concerned about the spread of Covid-19 via plumbing systems.

In 2003, defective plumbing caused SARS to spread through a high-rise housing complex in Jordan, leading to 300 infections and 42 deaths. This event has caused rumors that Covid-19 can spread similarly. Such information is 100% false. Due to improved plumbing practices and codes, such an outbreak is impossible in the United States. Despite the unlikeliness of the spread of disease in the United States, other countries that don’t follow codes may increase the chance of Covid-19 transmission via plumbing.

The International Plumbing Code

Developed by public health experts and engineers, the International Plumbing Code (IPC) sets the mandatory minimum requirements for plumbing system installation in the United States. Updated in 2019, the IPC protects the residents, workers, and inhabitants in residential and commercial buildings by providing safeguards against raw sewage, contaminated water, and the spread of disease.

The IPC covers:

  • Backflow prevention.
  • Anti-scalding devices.
  • Wastewater management.
  • Pipe sizing.

By addressing these issues, every building in the United States has a level of safety that ensures citizens won’t contract any disease as a result of using their plumbing.

Express Plumbing a division of EPS Inc. has been serving the Bay Area for multiple decades.  We focus on preventative care measures and work with local municipalities to rehabilitate existing systems, residential and commercial partners throughout the South Bay.  This effort avoids emergencies from arising and we are the emergency response plumbers to rely on.  We simply get it done!

How to Avoid Covid-19 Misinformation and Rumors

Before believing any social media-based information, online articles, or other word-of-mouth, you should conduct a background check of the idea in question. Snopes and FactCheck.org are two of the more reputable options online for identifying truth and misconception regarding Covid-19. In addition, you should always seek out information from reputable sources, including the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), as well as the official web pages or social media accounts of local, state, and federal governments.

Contracting Covid-19 is a concern of many Americans. But by maintaining proper social distancing guidelines, following shelter-in-place procedures, and ignoring untrustworthy news sites, you can separate fact from fiction. By doing so, you can eliminate unsubstantiated fears and use your toilet, shower, and sink without fear of coronavirus contamination.

As an essential plumbing service provider in the Bay Area.  We continue to service our municipal, commercial and residential customers.  We’ve advised our employees to follow the public health authorities’ guidance regarding hygiene, social distancing and personal travel, and we’ve reinforced existing company policy encouraging employees who exhibit flu-like symptoms to stay home and consult with a medical professional.

We are here to serve our community as always and you can rely on us as your Bay Area emergency response plumbers.


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SLAB LEAK BAY AREA

Avoid Plumbing Problems during the Bay Area Covid-19 Shelter in Place

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Tips to Minimize Plumbing Emergencies During the COVID-19 Bay Area Shelter in Place Order.

Many people are working from home, children are out of school during the Corona Virus Shelter in Place mandate. Our plumbing technicians continue to provide essential services in the community to commercial, municipal and residential clients.

Here are some tips to avoid plumbing problems during the coronavirus pandemic and increased household plumbing usage:

In the Bathroom

Clogged Sewer

As you remind your children to wash their hands regularly, also remind them to conserve on toilet paper usage. Warn them about flushing too much toilet paper down the drain at once.

The bathrooms in your home are getting used a lot more than they would on a daily basis. Motivate them to shut the lid in order to avoid toys, and things from falling in the toilet.

No Hot Water

If you are using a regular water heater. Hot water may run out if you have a large family and everyone is showering or taking baths at the same time.

Space out shower times with at least 30 min to an hour between each person. With an instant water heater, you’d never have to worry about running out of hot water.  Learn more about Tankless Water Heaters.

Clogged Drains

With a lot more showers, comes a lot more hair going down the drain. Place small screens, or covers over the drains to eliminate hair from clogging your drains. Clean them regularly.  Easily found at local grocery stores or hardware stores.  Remember to keep a social distance when shopping for essentials.

In the Kitchen

A family at home means the kitchen is getting used a lot more and on a consistent basis. Pay close attention to what you or your children are putting down the kitchen drain and in the garbage disposal.

Wipe plates clean before rinsing and placing them in the dishwasher.

Slab Leak

They say when it rains it pours. We have received many calls relating to slab leaks which can wreak havoc on the foundation and structural integrity of any home.  Slab leaks are not clearly visible to a homeowner, they can often go undetected for long periods of time. Now that you’re spending more time at home, you may take notice.

How Can You Tell It’s a Slab Leak?

  • Sudden spikes in your water bill
  • The sound of running water when pipes aren’t in use
  • Moisture or mildew under carpeting
  • A moving water meter dial when pipes aren’t in use
  • Standing water around the perimeter of your house
  • Unusually low water pressure
  • Cracks in your baseboard or walls
  • Damp or warm floors
  • Mold Problems / Moldy smell

We are closely monitoring the ongoing COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak according to the guidelines and recommendations of the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and other local and national health organizations.

Our thoughts are with you during this COVID-19 pandemic and we hope you and your loved ones are safe. We want you to know that our team is here to take care of all your essential plumbing needs.

Contact us with any questions or concerns you may have.


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plumbing pipes by express plumbing

All About Plumbing Pipes and Their Uses

Everyone hears the word plumbing and different type of pipes conjure in their mind. Most people think of silver piping running beneath their house or inside of the walls, but were you aware that there are actually different types of plumbing pipes?

Do you know which type of plumbing pipe you are using in your own home? Unless you are a licensed plumber, you probably have no idea.

The first thing you should know is that there are two distinct categories of piping: metal and plastic.

If you would like to know the exact types of the various plumbing pipes, please look below for a more detailed explanation on each of the most common types of metal and plastic plumbing pipes, shared exclusively by the leading plumbers in San Mateo CA.  Express Plumbing.

PVC Pipe

This is a type of plastic plumbing pipe which is used primarily in the transport of high pressured water. Standard sizes range anywhere from half an inch to four inches in diameter. This piping may only be used with cold water, as it is plastic and hot water may cause it to warp. The coloring of PVC pipe is usually white, but some variations may be gray. 

CPVC Pipe

This piping has received extra chlorination so that it may handle both hot and cold water. It comes in a very distinctive yellow color, and is more flexible than PVC piping. 

PEX Pipe

This type of piping may handle both hot and cold water, and has had a surge of popularity in recent years. It is most often used in water-based heating systems as it is much more resistant to heat then it’s counterparts. Colors include white, red, and blue. Red is used to denote pipes used for hot water, while blue is used to denote pipes used for cold water.

Poly Pipe

This is used to transport highly pressurized water, and comes in the form of a thick black pipe. Most often, it is used to transport water to and from the home. Commonly used outside, this piping is buried under the ground in order to prevent freezing.

Copper Piping

This is the most common type of pipe used inside of the home, despite the fact that it is more expensive then the plastic types of piping. Copper piping is very resistant to corrosion, and is able to withstand exceedingly high temperatures, making it perfect for hot water usage. These pipes are copper colored, as the name suggests.

Galvanized Plumbing Pipes

The galvanized coating on these heavy duty pipes helps to prevent rusting and gives it a dull gray appearance. These are used to carry water to and from the house. They come in standard sizes ranging from half an inch to two inches in diameter. The use of these pipes is diminishing,as they are being replaced with the PEX piping, which is just as durable but much more cost efficient.

If any of the pipes ever burst, especially the sewer pipe.  It’s important to find a specialist in trenchless pipe replacement.  Trenchless pipe replacement is our specialty at EPS Express Plumbing.

We’ve been serving the Bay area for multiple decades and are glad to assist you when you need underground pipe replacement or repairs.


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underground pipeline video inspection contractor

What’s Lurking in My Underground Pipes?

When it comes to plumbing, most of us are in the dark. We’re often in the dark about what’s lurking in our underground pipes.  Sure, we may be able to fix the occasional clogged toilet or leaky faucet, however sometimes the problem may be deeper set and requires a professional underground contractor.

Underground Pipes

Some plumbing problems may not be tucked away directly in our homes but may be hiding in underground piping. These pipes may run through our neighborhood, back or front yard and underneath our homes foundation.  Not an easy reach or a quick fix.

Many times these plumbing problems go undetected because it is hard to pinpoint the location of the issue until it is already too late, thus causing a stressful plumbing emergency. This can often lead to flooding or bursting pipes at the affected source.

Although these problems are hard to prevent, exceptional plumbing services such as video camera inspections offered by Express Plumbing help assure our clients that such problems are quickly detected and fixed.

Efficiency in Underground Pipe Inspections

Our professional technicians can take a look deep into underground pipes to see any blockage, cracks, collapsed pipes, root intrusions and more.  Underground pipe video camera inspections are efficient and designed to travel in any direction.

Express Plumbing is a division of Engineering Perfect Systems in the Bay Area.  Residential, commercial and municipal clients rely on our expertise and state-of-the-art, advanced equipment to get things done quickly.

In addition to pinpointing major problems, video camera inspections can be used on smaller jobs in our homes.

These useful cameras can help locate clogs and problems in our drains and even help rescue valuables such as the lost wedding ring down the drain, as recently reported by ABC 7 about a Kristen Kallis doing just that and was very happy to get her $10,000 diamond ring back.

This is great news for families with kids, as drains and toilets seem to be fun targets for tossing unwanted items.

If you suspect that something is lurking in your underground pipes, give our team a call, we’ll be glad to take a closer look using advanced equipment and expertise that will save you time and money.


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Why is My Water Bill Too High?

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Are you trying hard to find the actual cause of an ordinary plumbing problem at home? Does excessive water usage, low water pressure, noises or slow drains ring a bell? If you are looking to find the source of the water problem at your place then you have landed on the right page. Follow a few simple tips to locate the source of the water problem:

Listen To The Dripping Sounds

This step may sound simple but it is often overlooked in a noisy, busy home. Although a dripping faucet would not waste a significant amount of water, over time it could result in gallons of water waste. You may hear the sound of dripping water where there is no or little activity around the house, such as late at night or early in the morning.

Look For The Leak Evidence

You can detect leaks along the board base of the walls near your plumbing fixtures. Pipes containing pressured water can eventually become corroded, crack or develop loose fittings due to freezing and thus, allowing the continuous loss of precious water until it is repaired. Darkened surfaces, mildew or puddles of water even may occur below the leaks. It may be important to remove the wallboard, plaster or paneling to correct the problem if it is inside the wall cavity.

Check Under The Sinks & Vanities

You can take a flashlight and follow the trail of the exposed pipes to look for the droplets of water. The droplets of water, if any, would accumulate at the lower section. You can run your fingers along these pipes and feel for wetness.

Look For The Sweat On Your Pipes

The pipes in your home may sweat when the water (cold) passes through them in the warmer interior spaces. This condensing of water on the surface of the pipes may start to drip, causing the moisture problems to eventually appear.

Maybe The Bathrooms Are Making Noises

Listen for noises from your bathrooms in order to check if they run at unusual intervals, especially when no one in the home has flushed them recently. The tank would slowly drain after some time when there is a seal leak in your water closet (toilet), until the level of water sufficiently drops for a float valve to replenish it. Leaking seals and sticking flush valves in the toilets could waste a significant amount of water since the flow is continuous.

Check Supply Valves On Commodes & Lavatories

The packing that seals the water valve basically seals when it is compressed. It is only sealed to pack the leak paths so it does not create any difficulty while you turn the handle. You need to turn the packing nut slightly clockwise to see if it stops the leakage around the stem. The smallest of leaks occasionally stops when the valve is partly opened and it is either fully opened or fully closed.

Last but not least, you need to check the water meter. The water flow to your house will cease by turning off all the appliances and faucets that consume water. Locate the water meter, read the displayed amount and note it. Check it again after an hour to see if the water went through it (even if no one is using it in your home). Usually, smaller leaks do not move this meter but larger ones will.

This residential plumbing information is brought to you by our Bay Area plumbers, voted contractor of the year.  Express Plumbing is a division of Engineering Perfect Systems, dedicated to the Bay Area for multiple decades.

Contact us with any questions or upcoming plumbing projects in the Bay Area.


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Delivering Perfect engineering systems in the bay area

Engineering Perfect Systems and Underground Construction

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Our name says it all EPS Inc in the Bay Area stands for Engineering Perfect Systems.  Our team of civil engineers are the first line of defense for municipalities, residential, industrial, and commercial clients in and around the San Francisco Area.  From infrastructure to existing framework, we are eager to to serve as your Bay Area engineering contractor.

What is Underground Construction?

Since 1989, EPS has completed thousands of Bay Area underground construction projects by engineering perfect systems and providing small, and large-scale plumbing solutions for clients throughout multiple industry disciplines.

Government agencies, and the private sector rely on our expertise for installing new pipe, locating problems within existing pipes, or repairing underground pipe using the latest and most advanced technology available in the industry.

Minimal disruption, and less down time is our standard operating procedure.  We work with clients to ensure we provide efficiency and the highest quality they not only expect but meet the most stringent standards

  • Underground Utility Locating
  • 100% accurate location
  • Recorded and reported information
Line Inspection and Pipe Locating Equipment for Underground construction

One of our EPS CCTV main line lateral inspection & pipe locating trucks.

Engineering Perfect Systems with EPS Inc.

Our team of civil engineers are the #1 referred among municipalities and underground construction clients throughout the Bay Area because we only hire the best, most qualified engineers in the industry.

Our emphasis is always placed on experience and continued education which intern translates to quality, customer satisfaction, safety, and community service.

As you walk around the Bay Area above ground, tap your feet a few extra times, an EPS engineer may just be underground solving an issue or designing a new pipeline framework.

Plumbing Solutions Not Problems

We love the words plumbing solutions because at EPS Inc. there’s never a plumbing problem without a solution.  Our team of expert commercial, residential and municipal plumbers are eager to engineer perfect systems and solutions to resolve the issues quickly and effectively.

  • Sewer Lateral inspections
  • Water Pipeline
  • Storm Drainage Systems
  • And more…

There’s no project too small or too large for our EPS team to handle.  We install large scale underground sewer pipeline infrastructure using heavy equipment.  They call us “The heavy construction team for a reason”.

When you rely on EPS for your project, you’ll be sure to get an EPS team.  We are the team that develops the framework for your project.  Not all companies that advertise underground construction and engineering systems have the man power or equipment to handle large projects, they rely on subcontractors to complete the tasks.

When you ask us to engineer perfect systems, you know who you’re dealing with from the start to the end of the project.  Our experienced EPS team has been proudly installing, locating, recording, and repairing underground pipe and utilities in the Bay Area for over 20 years.

We forecast an increase in infrastructure projects in the coming year, and we look forward to serving our community.

Contact Nick Bechwati to discuss any upcoming underground project in and around the Bay Area.

 


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San Mateo Bay Area Plumbing Company

A Thanksgiving Wish from your Bay Area Plumbing Contractor

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The journey to becoming the most referred Bay Area plumbing contractor started over 28 years ago.  This Thanksgiving, we are humbled and thankful to all of you for making EPS Inc dba Express Plumbing the company it is today.

When our company started in 1989, we started with a vision of employing only the most qualified plumbing technicians that understand quality and advanced techniques.

That vision became a commitment that is continued today, and something you can expect when you need a trusted Bay Are plumbing contractor for your home or business.

We have had the pleasure of serving this wonderful community we also call our home.  Our company grew over the years from providing residential plumbing services to commercial plumbing, and a leader in providing municipal engineering support to our surrounding cities.

We are proud of our humble beginnings and never forget how we got here.  It is you! our loyal clients, referring sources, and your belief in us as a family owned and operated plumbing company that motivates and drives our continued strive for excellence.

Our owner, Nick Bechwati is a dedicated operator that still finds joy in getting his hands dirty.  You’ll find him all over the Bay Area providing civil engineering support, advanced drilling techniques with the biggest smile on his face, why? Even after 28 years, he still finds what he does both rewarding, and enjoyable.

From our entire family at EPS Inc. dba Express Plumbing we wish you a happy, and healthy Thanksgiving season.  We will continue to lead the way as the #1 preferred and referred Bay Area plumbing contractor. 

We will do it with pride, and a mission to only provide you with the highest quality service you expect and deserve. Nick Bechwati

A Promise from your Bay Area Plumbing Contractor

We take pride in our employees.  From our certified technicians, to our support staff, they are our biggest asset.  We promise to always be professional, courteous, and most importantly informative so you can make the right decisions that affect your family or business.

To all our EPS Inc. clients, we are committed to leading the way by insuring proper planning, reliability, accountability, management and prevention.  We are your community partner when you need a 24 hour emergency response for any local disaster, heavy construction project, drilling or boring advanced techniques.

From the entire team at EPS Inc. dba Plumbing we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.

How Can We Help?


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san mateo clogged drain expert

Proper Maintenance to Avoid A Clogged Drain

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Clogged drains account for the majority of residential plumbing emergencies.  Homeowners and business owners throughout the Bay Area can avoid a clogged drain by following a few maintenance tips on a regular basis.

Prevent a Slow Clogged Drain in the Kitchen

Preventing slow and clogged drains is the first step in avoiding a plumbing emergency.

Cooking Grease, and coffee grounds are two of the major every day items that go down the drain.  Avoid putting them down the drain all together by adding them in an old coffee can and dispose of them in the trash instead of the kitchen sink.

Coffee grounds are also great for plants, if you have a backyard garden, add them to the mulch pile, and watch your flowers bloom.

Clogged Bathroom Drain

Soap scum and toothpaste account for many of the bathroom drains our plumbing technicians see.  It’s quite difficult to avoid this but there are other things you can avoid such as hair going down the drain which will help you drains remain clear longer.

Place a screen that will catch the hair before it goes down the drain and create a clogged build up.

There are custom screens specific for your drain available at the local hardware store.  Snap a picture on your phone before going the store, this will help you get an exact fit screen.

Maintaining Drains while Saving the Environment

The EPA says that Americans toss approximately 4.5 pounds of garbage every day.  Avoiding clogged drains by properly maintaining them also includes not putting things down the drain that can hurt our environment.  Medications, flammable liquid, and paint are a few of the items to avoid all together.

Here are the alarming results of pouring these 7 things down the drain.

Our Bay Area residential plumbing experts are available to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week including holidays and weekends.  As an emergency plumbing company, we enjoy sharing some of the things you can do every day to avoid having to call us in the first place.

If you’re following a proper drain maintenance plan but still end up with a clogged drain, give us a call and we’ll be happy to serve you anywhere in the Bay Area.

 


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Join our Bay Area Water Conservation Efforts – Tips for the Family

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By now, parents throughout the country are relieved from the “back-to-school” rush.  Our Bay Area water conservation efforts have been implemented since we started in 1989.

As the #1 referred and preferred Bay Area plumbing contractor.  Our company is family owned and operated, we love the community we serve and always want to educate on preventative measures and tips to save our environment and save money for our clients.

Probably, the the last thing on your mind right now is water conservation, but we must remember the importance of saving water for our environment, and if that doesn’t interest you, how about saving money for yourself along the way?

Use these tips to make water conservation a fun learning experience for the kids, and something that will teach them good habits that last them a lifetime.

 

Water Conservation at Home

Must the faucet stay on the entire time while their brushing their teeth?  Once the brush and toothpaste is in their mouth, the average brushing time is two minutes.  Teach kids to shut off the faucet while brushing their teeth, this will save water and a hefty penny on your water bill

Conserve Water at School

Hygiene is a very important part of not spreading infectious diseases at school, remind kids to wash their hands before and after recess or anytime they eat, but also remind them to shut off the faucet while they’re scrubbing their hands.

This will help in the effort of conserving H2O and will quickly become a habit they follow at home.

Make the learning experience fun and rewarding.  It’s not a matter of you “have to do this” but “you should because”.

Discuss the details with the children and allow them to participate in these efforts that will help our environment and their future.

Debora Bekins, a Bay Area residential plumbing client said to one of our plumbers in San Francisco “I took my kids to the aquarium, and explained to them how important it is to keep our environment clean and healthy so we can enjoy things like this.  We wouldn’t want all these fish not to have water anymore, would we?”

That might be a little drastic, but not far off.  Whatever works for you and your family, do it.  Get the kids involved in your efforts and they’ll be so excited to share with their friends and teachers at school.

Water Conservation Tips for Mom and Dad

Set a good example by following the same instructions given to the kids

Fix leaks quickly and don’t let them get worse.  We are a 24 hour plumber!

Water your lawn early morning or late evening

Remember to turn off the sprinklers on rainy day

Go to a car wash that recycles water instead of washing it in the driveway

Don’t run the washing machine and dishwasher until they’re completely full

According to the EPA, the average American family uses more than 300 gallons of water per day per home.

If you implement these small water saving tips at home, you will not only be helping the environment but will also see a drastic change in your water bill.

“Maybe you could use the savings to take a trip with the kids to the aquarium or somewhere to enjoy the beautiful nature we so well need to protect and preserve.”

Let’s share and keep this conversation going.  Do you use any other methods of conservation? We would love to hear from you and share it with others in our Bay Area community.


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Bay Area Residential Plumbing Leaks and Repairs

Minor Residential Plumbing Leaks Can Become Large Quickly

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No matter how old your home is, a plumbing leak can happen, avoid turning a small residential leak into a large plumbing disaster by following these steps.

Identify the Residential Plumbing Leak Source

Faulty plumbing systems, and pipes can be anywhere in the house, kitchen, bathroom, under the slab, the garage or even in the attic.

It’s important to identify the source of the problem quickly.  If you have a two-story home, you may notice a water leak downstairs when the source is the bathtub upstairs.

If you cannot identify the source, our residential plumbing team in the Bay Area uses advanced leak detection equipment to pinpoint the exact location and repair it quickly.

Minimize the Home Leak Damage

If the leak is under the sink or in an area that has a water shut-off valve, be sure to turn that off quickly.  This will avoid the leak from further damaging your walls, floors, and surrounding areas.

Shut Off the Water Supply when Away

If you have a second home you occasionally visit, or you’re leaving a long vacation, it may be beneficial and preventative to shut off the water supply to the house.  Many vacation home owners follow this routine to avoid plumbing leaks and emergencies while they’re away.

If you ever find yourself with a plumbing disaster and your home is in the Bay Area, know that we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week including holidays and weekend.  Many Bay Area homeowners keep our number on speed dial.

Avoid Residential Plumbing Leaks with Regular Maintenance

You’ll never know what’s going on behind the walls, under the floors or carpet, but all your visible hardware, pipes, should be checked regularly.

If you see a rusty pipe, a faucet that’s getting stuck or anything the grabs your attention, don’t ignore it!  Repairing plumbing and hardware before they break can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.

At Express Plumbing in the Bay Area, we’ve been serving our Burlingame, San Mateo and Bay Area community since 1989.  Both residential and commercial clients rely on our experience, advanced equipment, and innovative techniques to repair, replace, or install.

We enjoy educating our residential community on the preventative measures they can take to avoid residential plumbing leaks.  We hope you find this useful, and ask you to share it with others.

If you need a residential plumbing expert, give us a call or request a complimentary plumbing quote from our team of Bay Area plumbers.


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307 N. Amphlett Blvd San Mateo, CA 94401
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