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Plumbers: Back Then, Today, and Tomorrow

When talking about any profession, most people tend to focus on the here and now. That's understandable. it's really important to know what's going on in the present tense. But you are missing out on some vital information if you never read and learn about the history of a profession. This applies to plumbing, in particular. You can really further your understanding of the profession by knowing how it began and what changes have been made over the years. That's why we sometimes reference the history of plumbing on this blog. We'll also dive into the future of the profession from time to time because, after all, you have to know where you're headed.




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Plumbers: Back Then, Today, and Tomorrow

Why Pipe Descaling Is Necessary And How It's Done

by Madison Dean

If you've noticed your drains are slow to empty or you keep having frequent clogs, the problem might be with scale buildup inside the drains. Scale can build up in pipes as well as drains. Some types of metal pipes develop scale more than others, but most all pipes can be affected over the years when you have hard water. Here's what causes scale to develop, the problems it causes, and how pipe descaling is done.

Scale Is Caused By Hard Water 

Hard water has a higher concentration of minerals in it than soft water has. The minerals stick to the sides of the pipe and build up over time. You might see scale around your bathtub or on a glass coffee pot for the same reason. It may take years, but eventually, the scale gets so thick inside of pipes that it can cause problems with clogging. A home with an older plumbing system is more vulnerable to scale problems than a newer home.

Scale Decreases the Diameter Of The Pipe

The problem with scale is that it builds up inside the pipe and causes the inside of the pipe to get narrower. This can make your water flow weak and your drains slow. In addition, the scale snags food bits, paper, hair, grease, and other debris that goes down your drains. This causes the clog to escalate.

Pipe Descaling Gets Rid Of Scale

Your plumber can approach pipe descaling in a couple of ways. One is to use chemicals to dissolve the scale much in the same way you might use vinegar to dissolve scale on a showerhead. The approach the plumber uses depends on whether they are cleaning out a water pipe or a drain. If using chemicals is not a suitable choice, the plumber might use a hydro jet. A hydro jet is also useful if the pipe has a clog due to all of the scales.

A hydro jet blows a powerful stream of water into the drain to break apart a clog and flush it out. Then the plumber can use a pipe descaling nozzle that has small chains on the end that whip around and knock scale from the sides of the pipe. As the scale is knocked loose, the water jet pushes the debris on through the drain.

Pipe descaling can save your pipes if you have the treatment done early enough. If you wait too long, the scale can get so bad that the pipe has to be replaced. That's why it's important to call a plumber for help when you notice your drains or your water flow is weak. This allows the plumber to fix the problem before the scale is a serious issue for your pipes.