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What Plumbing Is Needed In An Outdoor Kitchen?

What plumbing is needed in an outdoor kitchen is a question that we are getting asked more frequently at Whywait Plumbing. To be honest an outdoor kitchen is exactly as the name says – a kitchen built in an outdoor living area so plumbing needs replicate those of inside your home.

As restaurants have increasingly focused on alfresco dining this has now flowed through to our homes. Landscaping design is now all about creating an elaborate outdoor entertaining area complete with alfresco dining where meals are served from an outdoor kitchen.

Outdoor kitchens have increasingly become more and more sophisticated to allow gourmet meals to be cooked and served so frequently include the following:

  • permanent storage cupboards
  • preparation and serving bench spaces
  • sink and prep sink
  • bar fridge
  • wine cooler
  • ovens and or stove top
  • range-hood
  • barbecue with wok burner
  • dishwasher
  • beer on tap
  • designer lighting
  • gas heating
  • coffee machines
  • ice machines
  • pizza ovens

From a plumbing perspective many of these appliances and fixtures need to be connected to water reticulation, sewer drains and gas reticulation. Ideally your outdoor kitchen should be located with easy access to your house to enable easy connection to existing water, drainage and gas lines. Building an outdoor kitchen without easy access to these existing connections will mean that you have to install extra services lines which will blow your budget costs upwards.

In an ideal world you should plan for your outdoor kitchen when building a new home so that you can ensure that the water, drainage and gas pipes are installed before the landscaping is undertaken. It is easy to plan ahead for the possibility that you may install an outdoor kitchen in the future even if your original design doesn’t include one by installing live capped off water connections, drainage connections and gas connections outside for potential use in future.  When you are building a new home the cost to install live capped off connections is usually under a $1000 compared to upwards of $10000 to install new connections at a later date.

By Gary Mays

Preventative Maintenance Is Critical Plumbing Advice For Business Owners

Every business relies on many factors and unexpected disruptions are an everyday occurrence to be managed . From a plumbing perspective the best management technique is preventative maintenance which is critical plumbing advice for business owners. One of the most disruptive plumbing problems faced by business owners is a sudden leak or failure of a plumbing appliance or fixture. (more…)

Drinking Water Keeps You Smarter, Slimmer & Younger

Drinking water keeps you smarter, slimmer & younger and best of all its virtually free from your tap.   Critically water keeps your body hydrated because every single cell in your body needs water to absorb nutrients and remove waste products.

If you like the way your water tastes then whole of house water filtration from Whywait Plumbing is the solution you should explore to ensure you drink more water. Once you understand drinking more water is critical to your body functioning there are additional benefits such as:

  • Drinking Water Makes You Smarter: water can increase your cognitive function as your brain needs plenty of oxygen and drinking plenty of water ensures your brain gets all the oxygen it needs. In fact 8 glasses of water a day improves your cognitive performance by as much as 30%.
  • Drinking Water Helps You Loose Weight: water suppresses your appetite plus helps your body burn stored fat. When you drink plenty of water your liver is able to metabolise stored fat efficiently plus flushing toxins from your body and preventing constipation.
  • Drinking Water Keeps You Young: water is great for your skin keeping your skin moisturised plus reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Not drinking enough water makes your body retain what it has and this retention makes your skin puffy.

whole house water filtration gold coast (1)

To get the advantages of drinking water and enhance your family’s wellbeing you need to remove the chemicals in your home’s water. In fact if you knew the dangers that lurk in your water you would already have Whywait Plumbing installing a whole of house water filtration system that ensures clean, odour free, delicious water throughout the whole house guaranteeing a constant supply of delicious water throughout the whole house. Whole of house filters are a convenient, cost efficient way to effectively remove or reduce many of the undesirable chemicals, disinfectant by-products and volatile organic compounds commonly found in your water supply.

By Gary Mays

You Can Save Money By Washing Your Hands In Cold Water

You can save money by washing your hands in cold water because research just released by Dr Amanda Carrico a research assistant professor at Vanderbilt University proves you do not need hot water to wash your hands.In fact using hot water is completely unnecessary to hygienically clean your hands and is simply wasting expensive hot water.

washing hands in cold water

Washing hands with soap and cold water is as effective as hot water.

In reality all you need is cold water, a good quality soap, friction to scrub your hands for 20 seconds followed by rinsing them off and then finally completely drying your hands. The research proves that this simple hand washing procedure is just as effective as using hot water plus it reduces your energy costs and saves you money.

The heating costs of hot water are the largest single energy cost in most Queensland homes with it generally being around 30% of your electricity or gas bill. Eliminating hot water from your hand washing routine will reduce your electricity or gas bill by 5%.

Dr Carrico’s research is conclusive that you cannot tolerate water hot enough to kill germs on your hands. Hot water at 55°C will kill some germs but even at that temperature will scald you. In fact constantly using hot water to wash your hands can irritate your skin and adversely affect the outside protective skin layer.

In Queensland the laws were changed in 1995 requiring tempering valves to be installed on new hot water system installations covering new homes, non like for like replacements or when moving an existing hot water system to a new location on the property. This means that it is law that hot water delivered to bathrooms used primarily for personal hygiene purposes be regulated by use of a tempering valve or a thermostatic mixing valve so that is does not exceed 50°C. Therefore unless your home was constructed prior to 1995 it is unlikely that your hot water is hot enough to effectively kill germs on your hands even if you could tolerate the high temperatures.

By all means use warm water if it is more comfortable for you but there is no need to have it hotter than 40°C which the research proves is just as effective as water at 55°C in removing germs from your hands.

By Gary Mays

The Risks of Living With High Water Pressure?

Do you know the risks of living with high water pressure because I frequently listen to clients of Whywait Plumbing recollecting the days gone by when high water pressure was the norm. For many high water pressure had been a bonus, especially when water was virtually provided for free. High water pressure enabled many to stand in one spot and water the whole garden or to literally pressure clean the car or driveway.

Both Gold Coast and Logan council areas in the past had high water pressure delivery. Frequently in excess of 800kPa and often as high as 1100kPa. In reality high water pressures caused many problems with damage to pipes, appliances, taps, valves and fittings from water hammer which also reduced their operational life plus caused excessive noise in the water reticulation system.

Legally under Australian Standards, AS/NZS 3500.1:2003, Plumbing and Drainage – Water Services, the relevant clause is 3.3.4 which states, “Maximum pressure within buildings – Provision shall be made to ensure that the maximum operating pressure at any outlet, other than a fire service outlet, within a building does not exceed 500 kPa.” This was further reinforced with amendments in 2010 to clause 3.2.1 which states, “The maximum flow rate from a shower, basin and kitchen sink or laundry trough outlet shall not exceed 9 L/min.”

These very clear definitions within Australian Standards create a dangerous situation that many home and building owners are unaware of. This is because they have the incoming mains water pressure set above the maximum legislated operating pressure of 500kPa level for most connected plumbing fixtures. These plumbing fixtures include dishwashers, washing machines, ice makers, boiling water units, mixer taps, refrigerators with water dispensers and hot water systems.

Having excessive water pressure can cause you more problems than you may be aware of. Aside from damage to pipes, appliances, taps, valves and fittings from water hammer which also reduced their operational life plus caused excessive noise in the water reticulation system, you may also be voiding your property insurance and manufacturer’s warranty on any number of these expensive household appliances.

Most insurance policies and appliance warranties are void if your water pressure is above the recommended operational levels. This will always come back to the requirements of Australian Standards which is of course 500kPa.

Most hot water system warranties are void above 500kPa once again with the reference point being the requirements of Australian Standards. Many people are fooled into thinking they have a compliant system as they have pressure limiting valves installed. In reality the majority of these valves over 3 years old are faulty and in need of replacement.

As council water retailers will not guarantee supply pressures the onus is back on home and building owners to ensure they are compliant with Australian Standards. Most homes and buildings constructed since 2003 have pressure reduction valves installed after the water meter but these frequently require recalibration. Homes and buildings constructed before 2003 seldom have a pressure reduction valve installed which means they are susceptible to the fluctuations in water supply pressure.

The risks of high water pressure can be devastating on multiple fronts so if you are unsure of what your water pressure is and whether your system is compliant in regard to your insurance policies then contact Whywait Plumbing Services now to carry out a comprehensive analysis of your incoming water pressure to ensure you are aware of the risks of living with high water pressure..

By Gary Mays

How To Check For a Hidden Water Pipe Leak

How To Check For a Hidden Water Pipe Leak

How to check if you have a water pipe leak

With a water pipe leak, it’s commonly said that prevention is the key. Positive preventive maintenance saves you thousands of dollars in hassles and water damage.

That’s why you want to follow the simple step by step check for a water pipe leak. This will prevent the hassles before they hit you where it hurts most – in your pocket!

Step by Step Instructions

Below we run through:

  1. Check your taps
  2. Check your toilets
  3. Turn the taps off
  4. Check your water meter
  5. Wait 15 minutes
  6. Compare water meter readings
  7. Turn the taps back on
  8. When to call a plumber
  9. When your good to go

 

At Whywait Plumbing, we have always preached that preventative maintenance policies and procedures will prevent many of the significant cost blowouts in plumbing maintenance.

As always, prevention on checking for a water leak is the best solution. An underground concealed water pipe leak is often impossible to see or hear. More so if your home is on sandy soil or has lots of garden vegetation.

The simplest way to check if you have a concealed water pipe leak is to follow the how-to steps below:

Step 1 – Check your taps

Check all taps both inside the house and outside the house are not dripping.

Step 2 – Check your toilets

Check the toilet cisterns are not overflowing or running into the toilet bowl by tipping a few drops of food dye into the cistern and if there is no colouring of the water in the toilet bowl you know there is no leak.

 

Step 3 – Turn the taps off

What Plumbing Is Needed In An Outdoor Kitchen? 3Turn off all the taps that you normally leave turned on, such as the washing machine, dishwasher and the toilet cisterns.

 

Step 4 – Check your water meter

At the council water meter check the meter is not turning and write down the figures on the meter dial.

 

Step 5 – Wait 15 minutes

After 15 minutes recheck the water meter and write down the figures on the meter dial again.

 

Step 6 – Compare water meter readings

Compare the figures you have written down, and if the numbers have not changed at all, then you have no water pipe leak. If the numbers have changed very slightly repeat the test but do it for at least 1 hour.

 

Step 7 – Turn the taps back on

If you are satisfied there are no leaks remember to turn back on the taps you turned off at the washing machine, dishwasher and toilet cisterns.

 

Step 8 – When to call a plumber

What Plumbing Is Needed In An Outdoor Kitchen? 4If the meter dial reading on the water meter has changed after 1 hour then in all likelihood you have an underground concealed water pipe leak, and you need to give Whywait a call to organise leak detection.

Step 9 – When your good to go

If the meter dial reading has not changed, that means your underground water reticulation piping is in good condition.

Prevention is the key

No matter what your results in the above step by step preventative maintenance suggestions, we recommend you repeat it monthly. We also recommend you record your water meter readings every month as any change in water use patterns will quickly indicate a possible leak.

As a rule of thumb, YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE for any water leak after the council water meter that is on your property. Therefore we recommend that you at least check your water meter reading every month and seriously consider the installation of an AquaTrip water pipe leak detection and control system.

 

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