Category Archives: Residential Plumbing

Cincinnati Plumbing Service Gift Certificates Available

Gift Certificates Now Available

As a new or existing homeowner you can be overwhelmed with the problems that come along with owning a home or condominium. At Flow-Rite Plumbing we offer an easy solution for this. We have gift certificates available for purchase in any denomination you wish starting at $ 35.00 and upwards. Whatever the problem you or your loved ones face when it comes to plumbing around your home  you can be assured that we will treat you with knowledge and respect upon arrival as well as solve your problem the first time out. A gift certificate also makes a great housewarming gift for new homeowners!

A gift certificate from Flow-Rite Plumbing for family,friends and loved ones is a perfect way to take some of the burden off when a plumbing problem arises at an unexpected time. All gift certificates expire after a two year period from the date of purchase and are good toward any of our many plumbing services provided. Flow-Rite Plumbing offers full service in the residential and commercial plumbing fields.

Call today to receive 10% off all gift certificates of any denomination!

(513) 383-4242

Spring is just around the corner

Don’t be caught off guard this spring!

Wet weather will be coming soon. Now is the time to have your sump pump checked out to insure that all is well before the rainy season hits. It is too late to find out when all that water has no place to go except all  over the basement floor ruining clothes and other dry goods. 

Flow-Rite Plumbing of Cincinnati offers a 10 point residential inspection of all your plumbing fixtures to insure they are in tip top shape for a fee of $ 35.00. This includes all major plumbing fixtures, drains and their valves. Do you know where to shut off the water to your house in case of emergency? Not only will we show you where and how but we will label it as well.

When it comes to the rainy season the most important of these ten points is your sump pump and floor drains. We offer a full line of replacement sump pumps if yours is on the fritz and most are installed the same day. We can even install battery back up systems for your existing pump in case of power failure. We also have available a water powered back up system for your sump pump that never needs recharging. There are many possible problems that can cause a pump to go south so let our technicians take a look at yours during an inspection to make sure it is fully operational when the wet weather comes this spring.

Give us a call today to schedule your inspection at (513) 383-4242

Remember that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Don’t be caught off guard this rainy season.

A pic of a bad sump pump we replaced in 2008

A pic of a bad sump pump we replaced in 2008

Frozen Pipe Repair

It’s that time of year when the weather in Cincinnati can drop down in the single digits. The local weather man might not always be right but we all need to take their forecast into mind. Especially when they say that the wind chill will make it seem even colder.

The wind chill affects us the same way it effects our plumbing piping on or near the outside walls. If the forecast calls for temperatures that will fall below the 32 degree freezing mark then be prepared. Remember you also have to take in account what the wind chill factor is. This is especially important when the forecast calls for more than one day of continued cold weather below the freezing mark.

In the last few days we have replaced burst piping under sinks and in many outside walls. This is primarily due to homeowners that have not taken the simple steps to protect their piping. The most simple solution to preventing pipes from freezing on these ever so chilly days is to turn up the heat and make sure that the heat can get to the piping either through the walls or into that sink cabinet. Most homeowners have told us that they thought they would save money by keeping the heat set at a lower temp. Well they did save money that would have otherwise gone to the gas and electric company however they spent those savings in double when they pay for the Cincinnati Plumber to replace their busted water and drain lines because they froze.

Please see our post on how to prevent frozen pipes and follow the list very carefully, it may save you a costly service call to a Cincinnati Plumber.

If your in need of frozen pipe repair in Cincinnati then call us today for service at

 (513) 383-4242

A clean toilet is necessary!

Do you put the right chemicals in your toilet to clean it?

If you put the store bought little toilet fresheners in your toilet tank then you are asking for a service call from your neighborhood plumber! We have all seen the little blue thingy hanging inside the toilet tank before somewhere or another maybe even in your own toilet tank.

Do yourself a favor and take them out or don’t buy the next one. If you have multiples in the closet then throw them away or sell them at the yard sale. The chemicals in these things almost always contain some sort of chlorine or bleach chemical which will certainly cause premature failure of your toilet tank rubber parts and very likely end with a service call to your friendly neighborhood plumbing company.

The chlorine in these magic blue water making sanitizers affects all of the essential interior parts of your toilet tank by deteriorating them quite quickly. I know, this is something that is not written on the package when you buy these things at your local supermarket but if they did that they wouldn’t sell any would they?

If you like the blue water then add blue food coloring to the tank every time you flush or you can simply add a hanging toilet bowl sanitizer in your toilet bowl to freshen the appearance of the water after you flush. Of course these too can create a possible problem by being dislodged and falling into the toilet creating a clog! Once again call the neighborhood plumbing company.

The best means of keeping a toilet clean is to physically clean the toilet bowl and the fixture itself the old fashioned way with toilet bowl cleaner and a brush! Trust me I know it isn’t pleasant. I do it myself at least once a week in my own home.

Call your neighborhood Cincinnati Plumbers at (513) 383-4242

Drain cleaning in Cincinnati

Need a Drain Cleaner that works?

Flow-Rite Plumbing of Cincinnati offers its own drain cleaning solution that anyone can use! Contact us at (513) 383-4242 for shipping info or contact us through our website at Pricing is $ 12.75 per pound of drain cleaner plus shipping depending on where you are located of course. ORDERS OF SIX POUNDS OR MORE INCLUDE FREE SHIPPING TO THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES! 

One pound of drain cleaner will normally treat two fixtures per pound for a month’s time.A kitchen sink, bathtub or bathroom sink drain are examples. This drain cleaner is effective on slow drains as well as partially clogged drains, but is intended for the maintenance of slow drains due to normal use. This drain cleaner is not intended for use in toilets and must be applied per instructions to all other drains. We use this drain cleaner on a regular basis in the commercial field and in residential settings with great success.

If you are searching to find an economical way to maintain your slower running drains in your house or in your own business then we have what you need. It is easy to use and only requires  a monthly application per drain to keep the high priced drain cleaning and rooter companies away. Please feel free to call with questions. We accept all credit cards through Pay Pal and checks or money orders through the mail. Instructions on how to use the drain cleaner will be mailed with your order. Call today! (513- 383-4242


Free Sewer Cleaning in Cincinnati

Do you want a Free Sewer Cleaning?

If you live within the jurisdiction of the Cincinnati Metropolitan Sewer District, then you may be entitled to a free main line sewer cleaning. If you pay sewer fees to this sewer provider then you are entitled to a free sewer cleaning as long as it is found to be the sewer districts problem. You can learn more by clicking on this hyperlink Remember that there are limitations.

You may ask why would a plumbing company want to inform their possible customer that they could save money by not paying a plumbing company fees to unclog their drains. To us here at Flow-Rite Plumbing it is simple. Why not help a possible customer out for free when in return they might remember us when they do have to pay for a plumbing service call later for something else maybe. Who knows maybe our good deed will be returned? If not, we still performed a good deed by telling the customer about this service provided for no cost when we could have charged them for a sewer cleaning!

We don’t want to have to pay for something we don’t have to either! So pass it along to your neighbor or friend and don’t forget who told you about it!

Why be Wrong…….When you can Flow-Rite!

What to ask of a plumbing company

Would you call the same Cinninnati plumbing company back if…..

  1. you received prompt service calls when they were scheduled within a thirty minute to an hour time frame?
  2. you were treated with the knowledge and respect that you deserved when approached?
  3. you were given several options on the services that could be performed?
  4. you were given a detailed description of the services and what each scenario would cost?
  5. you were given a warranty in writing on your invoice?
  6. you were given a concrete price to fix your plumbing problems?
  7. you were treated like your plumbing problem was a priority?
  8. you were given a fair price to do the work?
  9. you were not sold something that you didn’t need or really want?
  10. you were happy with the quality of work for the price you were charged?

If you answered yes to any of these questions then you may already be our customer or might want to consider becoming one! One time using our services will make you a returning Flow-Rite Plumbing customer. This is self explanatory to us because it has proven itself time and time again with every return customer and referral we have. Every referral turns into a another satisfied customer which turns into another return customer so on and so forth.

As always…..Why be Wrong?…..When you can Flow-Rite!

(513) 383-4242

Feel free to leave comments below.

Backflow Preventers

What is a backflow preventer?

If your asking this question then you obviously need a crash course on what a backflow device is as it could save your life some day. Backflow preventers are overlooked in most cases because of the lack of knowledge about their need and what they do. Backflow preventers are commonly a plumbing code requirement in most all up to date jurisdictions. The need for backflow preventers hinges on the need for safe drinking water for all public humanity. The use of these devices along with the annual testing of them where applicable can protect the public water supply from becoming poisoned by contaminants that could make someone dangerously ill or even cause death.

The annual testing of these devices is very important because it insures the probability that the device is functioning properly in order to protect the public water supply. Although there are many forms of backflow prevention that are not testable they still exist in every persons home as we speak. That is if we as humans don’t by-pass these safety measures provided. One example of a non testable backflow preventer is an Air Gap which is simply the space between the end of a faucet where the water comes out and the point at which the water would overflow onto the floor if you filled the fixture that the faucet serves. This is a common backflow device that is implemented in every house around the world.

The way this device works is really simple and has no need to test annually. The air space between the faucet outlet and the possible level that the sink or fixture could overflow creates an area of free space or air at which the possibly contaminated sink water could never be siphoned back into the faucet. Thanks to gravity this can’t happen. This cannot happen because the sink water cannot travel though the air without being under pressure and physically get into the faucet if it were open and had no water pressure at the same time. An example of this would be if there was a water main break on your street.  This would result in a loss of water pressure to the entire house and at the same time create a siphoning effect at the faucet, possibly sucking up any nastiness that was in the sink water. That nastiness could get into your water piping within the house. The next time you turn on your faucet to get a drink of water it contains this nasty contaminated water that is all of a sudden in your drinking glass. Drink up!

Another backflow prevention device that some residences have is located where the water supply in a residence ties into an irrigation system. If you have an irrigation system for your lawn then you may be aware of such a device as it should be tested annually and the results will be forwarded to the local authorities having jurisdiction so they can make sure the device is working properly to prevent lawn fertilizer from being in contact with your drinking water. These devices are usually kept track of by your local health department.

You may think this wouldn’t happen to you but it is an unfortunate circumstance that does happen to people and it is unexpected when it does. This is why the plumbing industry has plumbing codes that they follow in order to protect the public drinking water. As I stated before, the only way one of these safeguards can be by-passed is by human intervention. Sometimes this can be done unintentionally by adding a hose to the faucet outlet or some other means of by-passing the air space between the two points as discussed earlier. If this happens then there is a possibility of contaminating your water within your own house and in extreme circumstances you could contaminate the water all the way to the water main in the street.

There are many different types of backflow preventers in place especially in commercial buildings where the possibility of contamination is more prevalent because of constant usage more so than in a residential setting. These devices are among the ones that should be tested annually to eliminate the possibility of contamination to the buildings water or the public water in the water main outside of the building. In order to test these devices you must have knowledge of their mechanical workings and be a licensed backflow tester by the state or locality in which they are located. Flow-Rite Plumbing has licensed backflow testers in Ohio and Kentucky. 

Call today for a quote on your backflow testing needs! (513) 383-4242

As always…Why be Wrong?….When you can Flow-Rite!

A plumber protects the health of the nation!

A Plumber Protects the Health of the Nation!

Anywhere in the world you look you will find a plumber of some kind. No matter what country or continent  you find, it is a profession that will never disappear or fade away! As long as people exist, have the need to drink clean water to survive and need a means of getting rid of waste water then there will be a plumber around in one way or another. Since the early roman viaducts were designed to carry water to the citizens of Rome there has been a need for plumbing. This is one thing that computers and machines can’t do for us alone.

We as a society have the need for such a profession and with that profession comes responsibilities such as protecting the health of the people that we provide these services to and ourselves. Just one oversight or cross-connected water pipe in one house can poison an entire city block’s drinking water.As a Cincinnati licensed plumber I can tell you that I take great pride in my work as well as all work that is provided by our company. Flow-Rite Plumbing stands by the motto: “A Plumber Protects the Health of the Nation!”

As always…Why be Wrong?…..When you can Flow-Rite!

Going Green in Cincinnati

Going “Green” can hurt the pocket book at first !

Going “Green” can severely affect the homeowners or business owners budget at first glance. However the advantages of energy efficient plumbing fixtures and systems can be rewarding in the long run. With the ever changing economy  bringing the need for cost effective fixtures and appliances there comes an added expense for the purchase of such things at least initially. Thankfully the government has rewarded us with tax incentives in the year 2009. You can earn up to 10 % tax credits back on the total cost of green technology fixtures and appliances. This even includes doors, windows and other such building materials. Check out your federal tax laws for further info and limits. Check out our Cincinnati Plumbers website for more info.

In the world of plumbing this points to a few key fixtures such as Water Heaters and Boilers as well as radiant heating applications. Not only do these energy saving fixtures save us costly natural gas and electric bills in the long run but they also provide us with a little incentive such as tax credits and in some cases a credit from your local gas and electric company also!

If a consumer sits down and does the math regarding how much gas and electric bills will decrease they would see that the up front initial money to purchase and install an energy efficient fixture would save them money in the long run. This is easier said than done though. I know because I have tried to convey these savings to many people regarding a new replacement water heater such as an Eternal Hybrid Water Heater. The consumer just can’t get past the the pay me now or pay me later aspect of green technology that I try to make as clear as possible. It’s human nature in a way. They look at a $ 800.00 water heater install compared to a $ 2600.00 water heater install. 

It’s a no brain-er right? I wouldn’t agree. The amount of money you can save by not heating water when you don’t need it with the more expensive water heater will save you an extra $ 30.00 a month on average! Yes it will take some time to make the difference up at $ 30.00 a month but after that you are home free with nothing but savings on your gas and electric bill. Don’t forget about the 2009 tax credit  that you get at the end of the first year.

I have a simple example that most will understand. A Lot of people go to a wholesale or discount membership type shopping club such as Costco or Sam’s Club to name few. The reason they go there is to find a better price on buying a larger quantity of product they use quite often at a substantially lower price for the amount they receive. They buy it at a discounted price although its more than they can use in a week and they save in the long run because they know they are going to use that staple item in their everyday lives. What is the difference if you purchase a water heater that lasts you longer and saves you more money in the long run because you haven’t spent all your savings on the gas or electric to make it work. To me this is a no brain-er!

As always, Why be Wrong?…..When you can Flow-Rite!

Call Cincinnati Plumbers at (513) 383-4242 for more info on green technology

Installing a water heater DIY

Do’s and Dont’s of installing a water heater


  1. Do consult with multiple plumbing companies for pricing of an exact or better replacement before attempting it yourself.
  2. Do compare your price quotes from other companies, comparing not only their prices but whether it is easier to have them do it instead of yourself.
  3. Do make sure that if you have a plumbing company install your water heater they and their installers are licensed and insured in the state and locality you reside in.
  4. Do consult your local plumbing code official about updates that may be necessary in order to comply with current plumbing codes.
  5. Do turn the cold water off to the selected water heater.
  6. Do be prepared to be without water for at least an hour or more to the entire house.
  7. Do turn off all gas and/ or electric to the water heater.
  8. Do have your new water heater already purchased and ready to install including all water, gas or electric fittings that you may need.
  9. Do follow all installation instructions provided by the manufacturer.
  10. Do drain your existing water heater of all water that is left in the tank after turning off the water supply. 
  11. Do make sure all water, gas and electric connections are leak tested and properly joined for your safety.
  12. Do have a helper on hand for assistance when needed.
  13. Do install the water heater according to all local codes and call for an inspection after it is installed correctly.
  14. Do discard of the old water heater in a manner appropriate to your local trash pick up service.
  15. Congratulations you have installed a new water heater.


  1. Don’t  try to perform this work without the correct plumbing tools and fittings necessary.
  2. Don’t try and move heavy objects such as water heaters by yourself.
  3. Don’t ignite a gas water heater or turn on the electric to an electric water heater before it is filled with water and you have leak tested the gas and water piping.
  4. Don’t forget to call the plumbing inspector in your locality for an inspection to ensure that the water heater has been installed according to current plumbing code.
  5. Don’t discard of your old water heater inappropriately!
  6. Don’t dislike a plumber because he or she charges a fair rate to perform a service such as installing a water heater. Plumbers are professionals by trade and get paid fairly to perform this service.

As always…  Why be Wrong ?…..When you can Flow-Rite !

Call a licensed Cincinnati Plumber Today at (513) 383-4242

Drain Cleaners that are harmful to your piping

Chemical Drain Cleaners that are harmful to your piping !

Any chemical drain cleaner that contains an acid such as sulphuric acid can and will harm your piping. Many off the shelf drain cleaners in a bottle can contain these acids in different amounts. The use of these drain cleaners can unclog your piping but at the same time can erode your piping from the inside out. I have noticed that some of the cleaners on the shelf contain these acids and state that they are safe for your piping! That is as far from the truth as can be. The instructions tell you to pour the solution over the clog and let it work on the clog implying that the cleaner does it all by itself. Like I said before these cleaners contain acids that can eat away metal and plastic. These are the two things that plumbing piping is made of so why would you deliberately pour these cleaners into your pipes? Just because the bottle says it’s safe for them, doesn’t mean it is!

There have been many occasions that I have been to a house for a service call to unstop a kitchen sink or sink drain in a bathroom where the owner has used one of these acidic drain cleaners before my arrival. After a few times of getting chemical burns on my hands from handling the plumbing piping under the sink I began asking the owner if they put any type of drain cleaner down the drain before I got there. Sometimes just knowing if they did before you begin undoing sink piping can help prevent the plumber from skin burns.

I made a good point about going to houses that have used chemical drain cleaners in their drains. The point is if I am there then the drain cleaner did not work very well. Also on a secondary note these same houses have had the chemicals sitting in the drain for hours. All the time the chemicals sat just eating away at the p-trap piping under the sinks causing the piping to form holes in it especially on older chrome metal p-traps. Of course there was a need to then replace the parts that might have otherwise been alright costing the customers more in the long run.

There are drain cleaners that can help dilute the clogs without harming the piping!

These drain cleaners will contain a chemical known as Sodium Hydroxide or also known as LYE. Sodium Hydroxide is caustic and not acidic. These caustic cleaners will only eat away at clogs that are organic in nature. Organic in nature means that most everything that goes down a drain  like hair, grease, soap, foods, vegetable matter, or anything that was living at one time or another or that came from something living. It will not dissolve metal, plastic or other man made materials which is what your plumbing piping is made of. Nor will it break up large objects in your piping such as foreign material that does not belong in the sewer to begin with. It also will not work well on roots in your sewer as you need to physically remove them even though they are organic.

The caustic properties however will eat away at your skin which is organic also. So be careful when applying these cleaners and wear gloves and safety glasses. As I said before it would be nice if you told the plumber that you used a chemical drain cleaner so he or she can be prepared as well. Any chemical drain cleaner can help solve minor clogs but the best prevention is maintenance of your drain piping system even with chemical drain cleaners when the drain is not actually clogged.We recommend manual cleaning of your drain lines either with a sewer snake or a water jetter machine before applying the chemical drain cleaners for maintenance.

Flow-Rite Plumbing sells its own drain cleaner for light to medium clogs and proper drain maintenance!

Give us a call today for all your Cincinnati Drain Cleaning Needsat

(513) 383-4242

As always…Why be Wrong ?…..When you can Flow-Rite !

Searching for a good plumber ?

How to choose a good plumber!

  1. Ask your friends, family and neighbors first who they would recommend. This is usually the best way to find a good plumbing company
  2. Take into consideration that they usually will remember who not to call instead of who to call!
  3. Always ask if the pluming company they recommend gave them an upfront price and stuck to that price when it was all said and done.
  4. If you are close then ask how much they paid for the services they received and maybe even ask to see for yourself.
  5. Ask them if they called or contacted several different companies before they chose the one they used.
  6. Ask if they called the first big plumbing ad in the phone book and stopped there.( If they did, then you might want to try shopping around yourself ! ) Remember those big ads get paid for by consumers like yourself.
  7. Ask if this was the first time they used the company they are referring and if it is, then ask if the company was referred to them by someone else.
  8. Remember to refer the company that you used and liked to your friends, family and neighbors no matter what profession or service they provide!

As always…. Why be Wrong ?…… When you can Flow-Rite!

Frozen Pipes

Keep your pipes from freezing!

  • Anywhere you may have water pipes in the house that are in,on or close to an outside wall need to be kept from freezing by insulation or heat.
  • Most piping that freezes is located under the kitchen sink or at an outside hose hydrant that is not a frost proof type.
  • Locate all potential piping that could freeze in inclement weather by locating the lines visually when possible.
  • Start by visually locating the lines usually you can see them  by looking at your basement ceiling if it is not covered and following them to the fixtures they serve.
  • Observe where water lines penetrate either the wall or the floor when serving a fixture that is near an outside wall.
  • If they penetrate from below and continue upward through the floor but away from the outside wall underneath the sink then on especially cold days leave the cabinet doors open to let heat from the house to the piping.
  • If they penetrate from below and appear to penetrate from the wall or beside an outside wall  underneath the sink then leave any cabinet doors open and apply an additional heat source under the cabinet.
  • If you have outside hose hydrants make sure that you disconnect any hoses from them at the first sign of cold weather.
  • If you have outside hose hydrants that are not self draining or frost proof type then hopefully you have a shut off valve directly before the piping exits the house and attaches to the hose. In this case at the first sign of cold weather, turn off the valve inside the house before the hydrant and open the outside valve up completely until warm weather returns. Opening the outside valve where the hose connects will let the piping exposed to inclement weather drain all water that could possibly freeze.

Please note: The above scenarios are the most common things we find and not all possibilities are covered!

Feel free to call us for further info! (513) 383-4242

As always, Why be wrong?…..When you can Flow-Rite!

Flow-Rite Plumbing flat rate service fee

Are you tired of hourly rates ?

Do hourly rates frighten you when it comes to calling a Cincinnati plumbing service company? We don’t blame you because it’s a no loose situation for the plumbing company. This leaves you two options. The first is to do it yourself or the second is to call a flat rate plumbing company.

Most Cincinnati Plumbers that do flat rate pricing will not quote prices over the phone because they want their foot in your front door first! For example when you commit to a service call fee or diagnostic fee they have their foot in the door. This usually gives them the upper hand in the matter. When they arrive at your house and ask how you’ll be paying for the service call right off the bat you feel committed in a way to do business right then and there. You already have a plumber there anyway, right?  Keep in mind that the service call fee or diagnostic fee is just to explain what is wrong and how much they will charge to fix that particular problem only. They give you an inflated price and rely upon the fact that you will feel it necessary to take care of the problem then and there. As I explained before now you feel committed. If their price seems to high even to someone who doesn’t know plumbing then pay their service fee and call someone else to get a different price. You will save money in the long run.The problem lies in the fact that most of the flat rate companies out there have a large overhead because of their full page advertising in the yellow pages 15,000.00 – 25,000.00 a month believe it or not. The service plumber they send you is also working off of commission. You know what that means, the more money they get you to spend while they have you the more they make in commission. The company also makes more money to pay those yellow page ads off every month. I have been to seminars on flat rate pricing and disagree with one key value that they teach companies to do in flat rate pricing programs. They teach and actually emphasize that as a company you don’t want repeat customers. That’s right, you go in once and get a large amount of money and go on to the next house not expecting any repeat business. Sorry folks but I can’t swallow that. Why be in business?

Our Solution !

We have the solution to your plumbing service call uncertainties. When you call us at 513-383-4242 we will give you an approximate price over the phone on how much the total cost of your repairs could and should be! If you schedule a service call with us for a fee of $ 25.00, we will arrive at your residence not first asking how you will pay but with a “hello I am so and so with Flow-Rite Plumbing, let’s take a look at that problem you have”. Our technicians are not working on commission they are paid an hourly rate respective of their plumbing experience and performance on the job day to day. They are not trying to up sale you on everything to make a commission. This is why we are the plumbers that you will call back when you have another problem because we treated you better than the company before us and better than most ever have. After assessing the problem and the proper solution for it you will then be given a verbal explanation and pricing for the total of work to be completed. If you decide to proceed with the work, then and only then will we ask how you will be paying  for either for the service call only or the service call and the work to be performed. The service call is included in your total price when work is performed. You will be advised of warranty in writing on your invoice.

We don’t advertise in the phone book because we don’t have to! You will only find us online, from a business card, refrigerator magnet, pen or by the most popular, word of mouth! Usually this comes from family, friends and neighbors. This saves us money and in turn saves our customers money. Our business comes from word of mouth advertising. It’s pretty simple. The only way we stay in business is treating our customer the way we want to be treated and that’s with knowledge and respect. That’s how we do it folks and it doesn’t get any easier than that!

As always…… Why be Wrong ? …..When you can Flow-Rite!