4 Ways You Can Conserve Water

Water is a precious commodity. We use it every day, but we often don’t pay attention to how much of it we use. In today’s post, we’ll take a look at four ways you can become more water-efficient, lower your utility bills, and preserve the environment.

The Great Plumbing Co. can help you keep your home efficient with a number of different plumbing services. Schedule an appointment through our website if you need residential plumbing, and read on for easy water conservation tips!

Water Conservation Tips

Use Your Trash Can Instead of the Toilet

On average, toilets account for roughly a third of every household’s water consumption. Even if you plan to replace your toilet in the near future, you should get into the habit of only flushing your toilet when you’re actively using it. So, instead of tossing tissues you use to remove your makeup or blow your nose into the toilet, always make a conscious effort to throw them into the trash. You’ll almost certainly see a reduction in your monthly water bill!

Fix Your Leaks  

Leaks are one of the most insidious plumbing problems we address. Leaks are rarely so bad that they have to be fixed the moment they’re noticed, but this means that they often go unaddressed for months. In some cases, homeowners simply become used to them and never call a professional plumber to fix the problem. However, even small leaks can waste thousands of litres of water each year, so fixing a leaky faucet or showerhead should always be one of your top priorities.

Replace Your Toilet

If you have an older toilet, then it’s likely that it uses between 19 and 26 litres of water every time you flush it. This is much more than it actually takes to flush waste, and installing a low-flow toilet can reduce your consumption to roughly 4.8 litres per flush. Even if you opt for a toilet that uses slightly more water, both you and the environment will be better off in the long run.

While we’re on the topic of toilets, we noted a few of the most common signs that you need a new toilet in a previous post, so be sure to catch up on that information if you’ve been considering purchasing a new unit for your home.

Use Your Dishwasher

It might sound counterintuitive, but using your dishwasher instead of washing your dishes by hand is actually more efficient. Numerous studies have shown that it takes less water to clean a full load of dishes when they’re in a dishwasher, but it’s important to note that your dishwasher needs to be completely full. If it’s only partially full, then you’ll actually be using more water to clean fewer dishes.

Keep an eye on our blog page, as we’ll be adding even more water conservation tips in the coming weeks and months. If you need residential plumbing in Toronto or any of the surrounding areas, then schedule an appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. through our website!

We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Four Tips for Preventing Frozen Pipes

With the Toronto weather getting colder by the day, every homeowner should be preparing to protect their plumbing as the temperatures dip below freezing. We provided you with a few frozen pipe signs to watch out for in a previous post, so be sure to catch up on that information if you haven’t yet read it. In today’s post, we’ll provide you with four easy and effective ways to prevent frozen pipes in your home this winter.

The Great Plumbing Co. provides reliable frozen pipe thawing and a variety of residential plumbing services in Torontoschedule your appointment online today!

How to Prevent Frozen Pipes


Poor insulation is one of the primary causes of frozen pipes. Many homes in the Toronto area were built decades ago and consequently have less-than-ideal insulation, so take some time to evaluate your home as the temperatures continue to drop. If you know that your home is vulnerable during cold snaps, then you should purchase some foam blocks from one of your local home improvement stores. You can place the foam in your home’s crawl space and inside your kitchen cabinets to keep your pipes working efficiently. Invest in a temporary patch kit if you want to be extra cautious, as you can use them to temporarily seal a cracked or fully burst pipe while you wait for a plumber to arrive.

Consider Heating Cables

Heating cables are a fantastic way to further protect your home during the winter. As you can infer from their name, heating cables are designed to be either wrapped around or placed near your pipes to prevent them from freezing. Some heat cables will need to be cut and hooked up to a power source, while others will be ready to be plugged in from the moment you purchase them. While heating cables are a great preventative measure, they are not a recommended substitute for residential plumbing and professional frozen pipe thawing. Always call your local plumber if you suspect that your pipes have frozen.

Turn Off the Water 

Turning off the main water valve in your home is another effective way to prevent frozen pipes. If you know that temperatures will be dropping drastically throughout the night, or if you will be gone for a span of several days, then turning off your water is probably a good idea. If your pipes do freeze and subsequently crack, your cleanup will be limited to the water currently in the pipes instead of a free-flowing stream.

Use a Space Heater

Space heaters can be an effective addition to any of the tips we’ve listed so far. You can open your kitchen cabinets and place a space heater near the entrance, or place one near your crawl space. Keep in mind that space heaters have the potential to cause a fire if they are placed too close to flammable materials, so use them only in open spaces and be sure to monitor them whenever they’re in use. The goal is simply to keep your pipes above freezing, so you may not need a space heater if you have already insulated your pipes or outfitted them with heating cables.

Do you need frozen pipe thawing in Toronto or any of the surrounding areas? Schedule an appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. today — our residential plumbing services can help you keep your home safe this winter.

Four Common Plumbing Problems

Your home’s plumbing is a lot like your HVAC system in the sense that you depend on it daily, but you don’t often stop to think about how well it’s working. In fact, we tend to only notice our plumbing and HVAC systems when they’re not working properly. In today’s post, we’ll review four of the most common plumbing problems homeowners in the Toronto area experience. If you are experiencing any of these problems, or any kind of issue with your plumbing, then schedule an appointment with The Great Plumbing Co.

Stubborn Drains

Stubborn drains are one of the most common problems homeowners experience throughout the year. Maybe your kitchen sink isn’t draining as well as it used to, or perhaps your shower drain is completely clogged. The good news is that while clogged drains can be frustrating, they’re often not difficult to fix. Instead of taking your chances with a drain cleaner from your local hardware store, call an experienced Toronto plumber and let us ensure that your entire plumbing network is working efficiently. We’ll perform an inspection and make sure that your drain is the only problem with your kitchen plumbing and that everything is in working order.

Leaky Faucets 

A leak of any kind will slowly but surely drive up your monthly water bill. Leaks are generally caused by a loose washer that leads to a broken seal, allowing water to slowly trickle out. Repairing a leaky faucet isn’t a difficult task in and of itself, but it’s always best to have a professional plumber perform the work. You may not have the proper tools and hardware to repair the leak yourself, and you may even inadvertently cause more damage.

Strange Noises

Strange noises whenever you flush a toilet, run the faucet, or turn on the shower are almost always a cause for concern. With the temperatures now dropping below freezing, clunks and bangs are often indications that there is ice in your pipes. During the summer, odd noises can be a sign that there is a blockage somewhere in your pipes, or that water is leaking somewhere in your system. Regardless of the season, you should always schedule a residential plumbing appointment when you hear odd noises coming from your home’s plumbing system.

Clogged Toilets

While many homeowners believe that toilets should be able to flush anything, non-flushable items like baby wipes, paper towels, and cotton balls can all contribute to toilet clogs. Even in instances in which you’re only flushing toilet paper, mineral deposits that build up over time can often cause a plumbing system to slow down significantly. The problem could also be that your sewer line needs to be repaired, or that your home’s toilet is simply outdated and needs to be replaced. Every situation is different, and we’ll work with you to find an ideal, cost-effective solution for your home.

Residential Plumbing in Toronto

Keep an eye on our blog page, as we’ll continue to add information about residential plumbing and common plumbing problems in future posts. The Great Plumbing Co. is proud to be your Top Rated Local® plumbing company — schedule with an appointment with a Toronto plumber today!

What Happens When a Pipe Freezes?

As a homeowner, you’ve probably heard horror stories about frozen pipes. Maybe you’ve known someone who dealt with extensive water damage after a burst pipe, or perhaps you’ve even seen the damage first-hand. Many people are unaware of exactly how devastating a frozen pipe can be, so in today’s post, we’ll walk you through exactly what happens when a pipe freezes. We noted four signs of a frozen pipe in a previous post, so make sure that you review that article to stay informed.

If you need frozen pipe thawing in Toronto, then schedule an appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. Read on to learn more about frozen pipes!

Flooding and Water Damage

Flooding and subsequent water damage are two of the most destructive events that can befall a home. Water expands when it freezes, and your pipes are only designed to handle liquid water. Frozen water will cause the pipe to expand and potentially break, which then leads to free-flowing water wherever the break occurred. No matter where a burst pipe occurs, the damage can be devastating. Pipes that have burst inside of a wall, for instance, may require that the wall be replaced due to extensive water damage. A burst pipe under the kitchen sink, on the other hand, can easily allow water to make its way into the adjacent rooms.


As if water damage weren’t problematic enough, a flooded home can quickly develop a mold infestation. Consider the following scenario: a pipe bursts on the main level of a home and is stopped before serious water damage occurs in the area. However, water seeps into the basement walls and ceiling, creating the ideal conditions for mold and mildew. Homeowners may not notice mold growth if the basement is only used for storage or as a guest space, which allows the problem to worsen over time. Mold remediation can be just as inconvenient as repairing water damage, so be sure that you call a professional plumber for frozen pipe repair if you notice any odd problems with your plumbing this winter.


In some cases, the damage to your home may be so severe that you have to relocate to a hotel or friend’s house while your home is repaired. The expenses may be covered depending on your insurance company, but even when they are, relocating is a major hassle. You need access to your clothing, food, and everything else you use throughout the day. The stress of relocation is only compounded if you have young children or pets, as they will be understandably confused and upset by the situation.

Don’t Perform Frozen Pipe Thawing Yourself

Many DIY guides will tell you that you can save money and time by thawing your pipes yourself, but doing so could be spell disaster for your home. A professional plumber will be able to diagnose the extent of the damage and provide you with an individualized plan that minimizes the damage to your home. Don’t take the risk of damaging your home — schedule frozen pipe repair in Toronto with The Great Plumbing Co. today.

Four Signs of a Frozen Pipe

With the weather in Toronto and the surrounding areas becoming colder by the day, preventing the pipes in your home from freezing is likely one of your top concerns. In today’s post, we’ll provide you with four of the most common frozen pipe indicators. If you suspect that your pipes are at risk of freezing, then schedule a plumbing appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. using our easy online scheduling application. We perform frozen pipe thawing that can minimize the damage to your home, so schedule your appointment today!

Visible Ice or Frost

It might sound obvious, but check the visible pipes in your home for signs of frost and ice as the weather begins to dip below freezing. Many homeowners believe that frost or small ice crystals are expected as the weather cools down, but this is actually a sign that your pipes are in the process of freezing. Check under your kitchen cabinets, under your bathroom sink, and anywhere else that you can see the pipes in your home, and call a professional plumber as soon as you notice any signs of icy pipes in your home.

Strange Noises

Are you hearing odd noises whenever you flush the toilet or turn on the faucet? Air that has been trapped by ice will often make a bubbling or gurgling noise as it slowly makes its way through the pipes. This is generally a sign that a pipe has frozen, but not yet burst, so schedule frozen pipe thawing immediately if you hear either of these noises. In some cases, the water making its way through the blockage will emit a whistling noise, so be on the lookout for that as well.

Damp Walls

Many homeowners panic and assume that a pipe has burst when they discover damp walls, but this isn’t necessarily the case. Your pipes might be freezing during the night and then warming up as the temperature increases throughout the day, causing your walls to become wet in the process. Be on the lookout for puddles on the floor as well, as condensation will often drip into the space between your walls and then into your home.

Frequent Plumbing Issues

Are you having persistent problems with your plumbing? Many older homes in Toronto have inefficient plumbing, but you should keep an eye on your plumbing’s functionality as the weather cools down. Water may take longer than normal to come out of the faucet, or your toilet may clog almost every time you flush it. Instead of chalking new issues up to outdated plumbing, schedule a residential plumbing appointment to err on the side of caution. Even if the problem turns out to be minor, you’ll be reassured that your home is safe throughout the winter.

Frozen Pipe Thawing in Toronto

The Great Plumbing Co. is proud to provide a number of residential plumbing services in Toronto and the surrounding areas. From frozen pipe thawing to drain repairs, we do it all! Book your appointment with a Toronto plumber online today.

winter at home

Is Your Home Prepared for Winter?

If you’re like most Toronto residents, then you’re probably getting ready for another cold winter. This time of year is incredibly busy, and many homeowners forget to take precautionary measures to protect their plumbing as the temperatures change. In today’s post, we’ll provide you with a few tips that can help you keep your home safe this winter. If you discover that you have a frozen pipe, or another issue with the plumbing in your home, then schedule a plumbing appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. using our easy online application.

Turn Off Your Outdoor Faucets

Did you do any gardening or yard maintenance over the summer? If so, then you need to make sure that you’ve completely shut off and drained your outdoor faucets. Start by turning off the water supply at the shutoff valve. In most cases, this will be located near your main water shutoff valve. After you’ve shut off the water supply, go back outside and open the valve to release any leftover water in the pipe. Check to ensure that the water does not continue to drip for a prolonged period of time, as this is an indication that you have a leaky pipe. If you’re not sure how to properly drain your outdoor faucets, then call The Great Plumbing Co. to schedule an appointment.

On a related note, be sure that you’ve disconnected and drained all of your hoses as well. Leftover water can remain in a hose for a surprisingly long period of time, so either manually drain your hoses or let them sit in the sun before the temperatures dip below freezing.

Open Your Cabinet Doors

Many homeowners believe that their heater will protect their home’s plumbing during a cold snap, but an efficient heating system is often insufficient when it comes to protecting your pipes. Open your cabinet doors to protect your pipes, especially during the night when temperatures plummet. Many homeowners understandably don’t like having their cabinet doors open throughout the day, so call a plumber from The Great Plumbing Co. to learn more about frozen pipe prevention.

Going on Vacation?

Many Toronto homeowners will be leaving the area to visit family and friends during the holiday season. Before you get caught up in the excitement and business entailed by this time of the year, be sure that you’ve prepared your home for your absence. It makes sense from an environmental perspective to turn your heat off while you’re away, but don’t let your thermostat drop any lower than 10 degrees Celsius. Frozen pipe repairs are significantly more expensive than allowing your heater to run for a few days!

Make sure that you’ve also turned off your water before you leave. You can never anticipate if something will go wrong with your heater in your absence, and if your pipes do end up freezing, then the damage will be significantly reduced.

Keep an eye on our blog page for even more posts about frozen pipe repair and Toronto plumbing in the coming weeks and months. In the meantime, be sure to use our website to schedule a residential plumbing appointment!



Clean drain

How to Keep Your Drains Clean

Drains are a lot like your HVAC system or gutters in the sense that you don’t usually notice them unless something is wrong. Maybe your shower is taking a while to drain, or perhaps your toilet is clogging more and more frequently. No matter what the problem may be, keeping your drains clean and working efficiently should be one of your top priorities. If you need to schedule a drain cleaning appointment, then schedule a residential plumbing appointment through our website! Read on to learn more about how you can keep your drains functioning properly.

Use a Filter

One of the best ways to keep your drains clean throughout the year is to utilize a filter. A high-quality filter will keep your drains from becoming overly saturated with hair, food products, and other materials (depending on where the drain is located, of course). Simply clean the filter whenever it becomes dirty and your drains will be in great shape year round!

Start a Compost Bin

What do egg shells, coffee grounds, potato peels, and leftovers have in common? They’re all things you should try not to put down the garbage disposal. While most of these materials will seemingly go down without any trouble, your garbage disposal isn’t a replacement for your garbage can. Moreover, you don’t want to discover that your sink suddenly won’t drain because of a food buildup deep in your pipes. Even worse, you may find yourself having to call a plumber due to a burst pipe.

Try starting a compost bin instead of putting your food waste down the sink. You can use the finished product for gardening, and you’ll be saving quite a bit of water over a long period of time. Even if you don’t see yourself using the compost, there are plenty of community gardens that would welcome a donation.

Collect Your Grease

As we noted in a previous blog post, pouring your grease down the sink is something you should always avoid. Many homeowners dispose of cooking oil or grease by pouring it down the sink along with hot water, but even this isn’t enough to guarantee clean pipes. The water will likely cool down before it reaches the sewer, which means that the grease has time to solidify in the pipes. Don’t risk a clogged drain — collect your grease in a designated container or speak with your local waste management company about how to properly dispose of cooking byproducts.

Contact Us for Drain Cleaning in Toronto

At The Great Plumbing Co., we know how important it is to have clean drains. As the Top Rated Local® plumbing company in Toronto and the surrounding areas, we’re committed to helping you keep your plumbing functioning flawlessly. When you call us for residential plumbing, you can expect fast, friendly, and affordable plumbing services that deliver lasting results. Whether you’ve got a clogged toilet or a sink that won’t drain as quickly as it once did, we’re the Toronto plumbing company you can count on!

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plumbing myths busted

Plumbing Myths Busted — Part II

Can you really flush wipes down the toilet? Will using hot water allow you to pour grease down your sink? There are many myths in the plumbing industry, and it’s not always easy to know where to turn for answers. We examined and clarified a few common plumbing myths you may have heard in a previous post, and in today’s post, we’ll continue to examine some of the most common plumbing myths we’ve heard over the years.

If you need residential plumbing of any kind, then schedule an appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. through our website!

Common Plumbing Myths

A Leaky Faucet Is No Big Deal

You’ve heard your faucet leaking throughout the day, but it’s a slow drip that probably isn’t raising your utility bills by much, right? While a leaky faucet probably isn’t going to break the bank, unresolved drips will cost you a significant amount of money over a long period of time. Moreover, leaky faucets are one of the leading causes of water waste. In the United States, for instance, the average untreated leak is estimated to waste up to 10,000 gallons of water every year. As a nation, it’s estimated that roughly 1 trillion gallons are wasted due to leaks. While Canada’s population is much smaller, we can expect the figures to be proportional. Give us a call or schedule a residential plumbing appointment if you have a leak that needs to be fixed.

Cat Litter Is Flushable

Many litter manufacturers claim that their litter is flushable, but it’s best to throw your cat’s litter out with the rest of your waste. Many modern toilets use less water than their older counterparts, meaning that they may not have enough water to transport the litter all the way through the pipes. Further, cat fecal matter isn’t exactly the softest material around. It dehydrates within a matter of days, and if you’re not scooping multiple times per day, then it’s likely to become stuck in your pipes.

If this isn’t enough to convince you, then consider the fact that cat waste sometimes contains the parasite Toxoplasma gondii. This parasite is one of the most common in the world, and it can cause toxoplasmosis, a flu-like disease that can lead to serious complications. Water treatment facilities have become more and more effective in recent years, but many are still not able to fully filter out every contaminant. Keep yourself and your fellow Canadians safe by disposing of your kitty litter elsewhere!

Letting Bleach Sit Is Fine

Bleach is a common chemical used to clean toilets, but letting it sit for too long can corrode your toilet and your pipes. If you’re going to use bleach to clean your toilet, then let it sit for no longer than 10 minutes before you begin cleaning. Letting it sit for any longer won’t increase its effectiveness, but it can slowly damage your porcelain.

All Plumbers Have Similar Skills

This myth couldn’t be further from the truth! If you’re relying on someone for residential plumbing in Toronto, you need to ensure that you’re choosing a plumber with the skills to get the job done correctly the first time around. At The Great Plumbing Co., we’re proud to have been in the industry for nearly three decades. We’re known for quality, integrity, and fast service, but don’t take our word for it — read our reviews for yourself!

We’ll keep revisiting this topic in future posts, so be sure to keep an eye on our blog page. If you need residential plumbing in Toronto or any of the surrounding areas
, then get in touch with The Great Plumbing Co. We can help you with kitchen, bathroom plumbing, and so much more!

myths busted

Plumbing Myths Busted — Part I

Every industry has myths that have somehow remained in public consciousness for decades, and the plumbing industry is no exception. As one of the top residential plumbing companies in Toronto and the surrounding areas, we’re proud to be a go-to resource for information about drain cleaning, frozen pipe repair, and other common plumbing problems.

If you need residential plumbing in Toronto or any of the surrounding areas, then schedule an appointment with The Great Plumbing Co. today!

Common Plumbing Myths

Ice Is an Effective Disposal Blade Sharpener

You’ve probably heard that pouring a few ice cubes down the sink will keep your blades sharp before. Maybe you had a parent who would put a few ice cubes in the disposal every month or so, or maybe you read about this myth online. This myth is false, in large part because most garbage disposals have teeth and grinding mechanisms instead of blades (and even if they did have blades, ice would quickly dull them). Ice can damage and jam the mechanisms in your disposal, so call us for garbage disposal repair if you’re concerned that your disposal isn’t working as well as it once did.

Hot Water Prevents Grease Clogs

While it’s true that hot water melts grease, it’s unlikely that a hot stream of water will carry the grease all the way out of your plumbing system. In fact, it’s likely to cool down around the same area and cause a buildup further down the pipe, which can be even more difficult to repair. You don’t want a clogged pipe to burst and cause damage to your home, so practice proper grease disposal whenever you’re cooking with oils and fats. For instance, if you’re cooking bacon on a weekend morning for your family, then pour the grease into a disposable container and throw it away once it’s solidified. Alternatively, you can reuse the grease, use it for compost, or ask your local waste management company for disposal advice.

You Can Flush Wipes

Wipes, and even wipes marketed as flushable, are one of the most common reasons why clients schedule clogged toilet appointments with our plumbing company. Toilet paper is designed to break down as it travels through your plumbing system, but wipes won’t break down as easily. If you’re going to use wipes — even flushable ones — then err on the side of caution and find somewhere to throw them away rather than putting them down the drain. We provide exceptional bathroom plumbing, so get in touch with us if you need help with a clogged toilet in your home.

These are just a few of the most common plumbing myths we’ve heard in the past few years. Keep an eye on our blog page for future posts in which we’ll continue to revisit this topic in more detail. If you’re ready to get started with an appointment, then click on the button below to schedule plumbing services at a time that is convenient for you. We look forward to working with you soon!