Hiring a plumber

When hiring a plumber -- especially for an expensive project for which you have time to plan -- make sure the plumber you hire is fully qualified and licensed in your state. A plumber may be an apprentice in training, a journeyman or a highly qualified master plumber depending on the level of training and experience.


A product of thousands of years of human thought, the modern toilet is ingeniously shaped to flush away its contents whenever sufficient water is dumped into the bowl. The mechanical parts inside the tank merely supply that water -- but these are the parts you need to fix.

Sump pumps

A sump pump is like a vigilant, hardworking little robot standing sentry in your basement. When it detects rising groundwater it goes to work until the threat passes. Then it quietly stands down, expecting no thanks, and puts itself back on guard awaiting the next call to duty.

Plumbing emergencies

It's like a scene from a slapstick comedy – the kitchen faucet breaks off in your hand and water is spraying everywhere up to the ceiling and running down the walls. What do you do? Clue: Your options do not include going back in time to make better plans for this moment.

Gas Leak Repair

Is your natural gas pipeline safe?

The recent Harlem, N.Y., gas explosion prompted reminders of natural gas leak dangers. Read more about what to do if you detect a gas leak.

Pest control company finds gas leak

An Indianapolis pest control company found a gas leak at an Indianapolis member’s home by noticing the rotten egg smell. Learn how to prevent and detect natural gas leaks, and read our guide for more tips on natural gas.

7 tips to minimize carbon monoxide risks

Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless and toxic gas. Here are Angie's tips to minimizing CO risks:

Washington, D.C., fence company disputes homeowner's complaint

A Washington, D.C.,-area homeowner says a fence company owner took payment without resolving his issues.

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Sewer Cleaner

Top home projects you hate to do but can't avoid

It’s almost painful to shell out hard-earned money for some home projects. Unlike adding a new deck or remodeling the kitchen, replacing a sump pump is hardly cause for a party.

Maintenance is key in avoiding a sewer line backup

Having your sewer line cleaned is one of the most overlooked home maintenance tasks. One highly rated provider explains why it's so important and how it works.

Keep sewage out of your Chicago basement

Chicago homeowners can choose from several options to prevent basement flooding, including overhead sewers and exterior flood control systems.

3 things to know before replacing your sewer line

One highly rated provider shares three things to look for when determining the price of replacing your sewer line and other factors that may affect the price.

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Drain Cleaner

How to retrieve jewelry from a sink, dish disposal and shower drain

Did you lose a ring, bracelet or earring down the drain? Find out how to retrieve lost jewelry from the kitchen sink, garbage disposal or shower drain.

The art of plunging

Despite what purists say, plunging a toilet is an art. To clear clogs quickly and avoid an overflowing toilet, follow these plumbing tips to master the plunger.

Indy plumbers flush out common sales tactics

The plumbing industry has its own common upsells, and as a consumer, it’s important to learn how to distinguish a needed repair from a money grab.

Backed-up sump pump leads to amazing photo op for Zionsville boy

Who knew a backed up sump pump that required excavation to fix could be fun? Leave it to this three-year-old boy to find joy in a seemingly stressful time.

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Septic Tank Installation

Septic systems

Septic systems are commonly used in rural areas and sometimes in areas not served by a municipal sewage system. Septic systems absorb household sewage and distribute the liquid waste into a designated leach field where natural processes can reclaim it. However, solid wastes and grease must be pumped out of the septic system periodically.

Top home projects you hate to do but can't avoid

It’s almost painful to shell out hard-earned money for some home projects. Unlike adding a new deck or remodeling the kitchen, replacing a sump pump is hardly cause for a party.

Tampa-area septic customers learn value of regular inspections

Septic tank damage can destroy the system and contaminate the area, costing thousands of dollars to clean up. Tampa professionals recommend an inspection every few years.

4 tips to extend your septic system’s lifespan

If your home features a septic tank, you may wonder how long it will last before repairs or replacement are needed. Check out 4 tips to extend its lifespan.

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Water Heater Installer

Water heaters

Standard storage tank water heaters typically need to be replaced after about a decade, but they can last years longer with some homeowner maintenance. When the time comes to buy a new one, there are more options for consumers to consider.

Tankless vs. storage: Which water heater is right for my home?

Which is better: a tankless or a storage water heater? One highly rated provider breaks down two different water heater options for your home.

Infographic: A guide for budgeting indoor home maintenance

Keeping your home up to date and functioning properly requires regular home maintenance. Read this guide to learn how much each project might cost you.

Tankless water heaters provide hot water on demand

A storage tank water heater must maintain hot water even when not in use, but a tankless water heater provides endless hot water in minimal space.

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Water Softener Maintenance

Water softeners

Even if your tap water comes from a reservoir, chances are it previously passed through underground caverns where it absorbed mineral deposits. Water with a high concentration of minerals is referred to as "hard" water. It's safe to drink but can harm your plumbing and appliances.

Indianapolis water: Is your source safe?

Indianapolis water is safe to drink, but that doesn't mean it tastes good or is free of chemicals. Learn how human impact and treatment affect water quality.

Why does my water softener regenerate at 2 a.m.?

Most water softeners are pre-programmed to regenerate at 2 a.m. - but why? One highly rated provider explains the process and why it's important.

Is hard water keeping my dishes from getting clean?

Is hard water leaving a white residue on your dishes after you wash them in the dishwasher? One highly rated provider explains how you can fix the problem.

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Well Pump Service

Wells and pumps

Water supplied by wells is just as safe, convenient and reliable as municipal water supplies and millions of homes around the country rely on wells. But relying on a well requires an understanding of its components, and regular maintenance and testing.

Should I turn off my well pump when I leave town?

Angie Hicks responds to a member who wants to know if shutting off power to his well pump while away from home will cause his pipes to freeze or burst.

Cisterns: Deep trouble or untapped resource?

Indianapolis area homeowners discuss utilizing the underground caverns beneath their homes.

Don't let water quality slide down the drain

Whether you live in the country or city and have a sewer or a septic, you play a role in the quality of your community's water quality. The way you do laundry, bathe, prepare dinner and landscape your yard has an impact on your neighbors and the environment.

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Drain Pipe

Household sewer drains

A home's main sewer drain carries all household sewage to municipal sewer lines or to an on-site septic system. Older drains can become invaded by tree roots, causing blockage that can lead to sewage backing up into the house. Replacing a drain can be expensive, though newer techniques can lessen the amount of digging required.

Icy sidewalk problem solved with improved downspout drainage

Do you have pools of water collect every time it rains or experience icy conditions in the winter? This member planned out a solution for his drainage issues.

Flooding problems? Call a drain pipe expert

Wet basements, crawlspaces or overly-saturated lawns could require the expertise of an exterior drain pipe installation and excavation expert.

Does insurance cover sewer line replacement?

Sewer line replacement can cost thousands at a minimum. Check your homeowner's policy to see if you're covered.

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