Grace Plumbing
photo of plumber fixing pipes in bathroom

Lots of our clients aren’t sure what exactly we need to know. Here are a few key things you can tell your plumber to give them a head start on your job and make sure they communicate and work as efficiently as possible.

More is more

The more information we have about your job, the better. It allows us to come in armed with knowledge and get to fixing your job quicker. The more we know about your job, the more accurately we can quote, too. We’ve most likely worked on a bunch of similar jobs! The better your plan, the easier our job will be.

Photos of damage/the area

Photos and video are a huge help for us! Getting a good visual of your space or the issue you’re wanting us to deal with will help us get a thorough idea of your job quickly, ensure we have everything we need, let you know if there’s anything to prepare beforehand, and find our way around when we get there. This can save us time, which saves you money. You can easily add pics to our contact form, or email them through 😊

Access to your home

We need to access different areas of your home depending on the job. Be sure to let us know how we can access the different areas of your home that need to be worked on, for example, under the house or in your roof space.

Are you using other tradespeople too?

This is key for us to know! Getting in touch with any other tradespeople working on your job, especially for new builds and bathroom or kitchen renovations, makes sure we get in at the right time. We can figure out the best schedule with the other tradies to make sure plumbing goes in at the right time and we’re not tripping over other trades. We work with a lot of different tradespeople here in Auckland so we’re accustomed to scheduling in with one another and making things work smoothly!

Have you got all your parts?

We work on loads of new builds, bathroom and kitchen renovations, which often involve e tapware and other accessories that need to be hooked up to your plumbing. Let us know what parts you have when you’re booking so that we can let you know what else might need your attention. Remember that getting parts through your plumber can give you a better after installation warranty and servicing so it can be a better option in the long run. Pricing is not more expensive through us as many people are led to believe.

Most of all, remember that our plumbers go through years of training and experience to become certified. There’s a reason there are laws to make sure your plumbing is safe. So be sure to ask us any questions and give us as much info as possible so we can ensure we get it done right and as efficiently as possible.

 

Contact us about your upcoming plumbing in Auckland. We’re based in Mount Wellington, servicing East Auckland and the greater Auckland region.

Image of a plumbing toilet connector

A heads up ‑ there are delays in the plumbing industry nationwide at the moment due to the global impact of COVID‑19 and a huge increase in demand. We’ve started to see a delay on products with short stock and long wait times. This is true across trades as a whole including construction etc. If you’ve got any projects planned in the near future, this may impact your timing.

So what can you do??

Order Early

Ordering everything in early is your best strategy. Our biggest delay is waiting on shopping and logistics on the products themselves. If you get your products ordered ahead of time through your suppliers, we’ll be more likely to be able to get your job done in a timely manner. The majority of products in NZ are imported or rely on parts that can’t be produced here, so this is even true for NZ manufactured goods.

Book your tradies in

The whole trades industry is seeing a staff shortage. This was true even before the demand boom we’re seeing now! Booking all of your tradies in early will mean everyone can work together to schedule each piece of the puzzle and get your job done as quickly as possible. After lockdown, there will also be a backlog of projects so you’re best to get in touch much earlier than usual. A lot of tradies are booked well into 2022 so this will avoid delays.

Give your friendly tradies lots of notice!

Give us (and your other tradespeople!) plenty of notice of any jobs in the pipeline to make sure we can fit you in. Happy planning and we’ll see you out there!

 

Contact our friendly team of plumbers if you’ve got a job planned here in East Auckland.

Lockdown baking Auckland plumbers

We’ve been sharing some of Amelia’s favourite recipes over lockdown. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

 

Cheesy Rocket Scones

 

Ingredients:Lockdown baking Auckland plumbers

4 cups self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
1½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
a pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
3 handfuls (75g) rocket / arugula or spinach leaves, finely chopped
200g tasty cheese, grated
1 cup chilled cream
1 cup chilled soda water / club soda
a little butter, to serve (optional)
Preheat oven to 200ºC and line a baking tray with baking paper.

Method:

In a mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and cayenne, if using. Mix in chopped leafy greens and cheese. In a separate bowl or jug combine the cream and soda water / club soda. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid. Mix with a knife until just combined.

If making in a food processor or electric mixer, pulse together flour, baking powder, salt, cayenne, leafy greens and cheese to combine. Add soda water / club soda and cream, pulsing 3-4 times until mixture just starts to come together.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and pat into a rough rectangle about 4cm thick. Cut into 12-16 pieces and place on prepared baking tray. Bake until scones are puffed and golden and they bounce back when pressed (about 15-18 minutes).

Freeze if not using the same day. When ready to use, thaw and reheat for 5 minutes in an oven preheated to 220ºC.

Serve warm or at room temperature, split open and spread with a little butter, if desired. If you have any left over the next day, they are also good split in half, toasted, spread with butter and topped with sliced tomato and a little salt and pepper.

Recipe by Annabel Langbein

Amelia’s note: cut into 3-4 cm pieces as they rise a lot!

 

Butternut Satay Soup

Ingredients:

olive oil 2 tablespoons

onions 2 large, chopped

garlic 3 cloves, chopped

ground cumin, 1 teaspoon

ground coriander 1 teaspoon

curry powder 1 teaspoon (Amelia’s note: also good with garam masala)

chili flakes good pinch

tomato paste 1 1/2 tablespoons

butternut 1.3-1.4kg (skin off), chopped into 3cm chunks

chicken stock 1.25 litres

smooth peanut butter 4-5 tablespoons

lemon juice 1-2 tablespoons

salt

black pepper freshly ground

natural unsweetened Greek yoghurt 1/2 cup (optional)

coriander 1/4 cup chopped to garnish

red chilli 1 large chopped to garnish

Method: 

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan on medium heat. Cook onions and garlic for 5 minutes until onion is soft. Add spices and chilli flakes and fry for a few minutes, then add tomato paste and fry for a further minute. Add a little water at any time if onions or spices are sticking to the bottom of the pan. Add butternut and chicken stock. Bring to the boil, lower heat and cook until butternut is soft, about 15 minutes.

Transfer to a food processor along with peanut butter. Blend until smooth. Season to taste with lemon juice, salt and pepper. (If you have used stock made from stock powder, the soup may not need salt).

Divide soup between bowls and garnish with a dollop of yoghurt if using, and chopped coriander and chilli if using.

*Amelia’s note: yoghurt and coriander add extra deliciousness!

Recipe by Nadia Lim

 

Water Mains Auckland plumber

 

Let’s imagine for a second. You’ve got a plumbing emergency or a water leak going on at your home. Do you know how to turn off your water mains? This is a super useful thing to know as a property owner, as the water pipes are on you.

Sure, you can call a local plumber (we recommend it, of course!), but you’re gonna want to turn the water off til you can give us a bell. If you’ve got a burst pipe or a leak pops out of nowhere, you’ll want to minimise the mess ASAP. It can also be useful to shut off your water supply if you’re heading away to reduce the risk of returning to a water emergency (or hearing about it from the neighbours when you’re elsewhere!).

Find your water toby

Who’s Toby? A toby is the main water valve that supplies your home. Most of the time, leaks are close to the connection to the toby box or where the main line enters the house. We always ask people to look closely around those two areas before we enlist our leak detection team, so it’s a good time saver to know where it is. Find it ahead of time so you aren’t rushing around in a panic if the plumbing needs some urgent attention! Check for a lid around the front of your home or near the property boundary – your water shut-off valve should be in there. To test if that’s the right one, you can turn it off then run a tap inside. If the water stops after a few seconds, you’ve got it! Go turn it back on and go about your merry way knowing you’re well prepared in case of a plumbing emergency.

Isolation valve

If something happens inside, you may also have an isolation valve that lets you turn off the water at one point of the house, while it continues to flow freely in other spots. These will usually be behind the toilet or under the sink. Check if it requires a screwdriver or it’s a hand-operated valve – it’s good to know and have the tools you need handy just in case.

 

Check out some handy guides for finding your water meter/valves and checking for leaks at Watercare and Master Plumbers.

Give us a call for all your plumbing needs. Our plumbing team are based in East Auckland, servicing the Auckland region.

You know that annoying, not to mention nasty, feeling finding a puddle of toilet water on the floor every time you’re off to the loo. If you’ve got a toilet leak, don’t ignore it! Water damage is your main cause for concern here and over time it will cause issues. You’re best to fix it at the source before it becomes a bigger problem for your bathroom – and it’s usually simple if you get onto it quickly.

Find the source of the leak

First up, you’ll be looking to find the source of the leak. Mop around the base of the toilet, and keep an eye on it over a 24-hour period if it’s minor.

The bowl

If you notice water leaking from under the toilet bowl, it could be the pan connector has perished or been installed incorrectly. To fix this, your water supply will need to be turned off and toilet disconnected so that the pan connector can be replaced if it’s not sealing properly. Now this is a job for your plumber.

The toilet valve

If the water is coming out of the valve in the wall, it may need tightening or replacing.

Misaligned pipes/valves could mean the supply line needs repairing. This may sound daunting, and this one definitely needs the attention of a certified plumber! They’ll have a good idea of the problem and how long it will take.

A cracked toilet

If your toilet tank is cracked, it could be dribbling water. In this instance we adopt a replacement policy only as trying to fix it can often be more costly that a full replacement. Your plumber will need to access the damage and let you know your options.

If you’re having trouble finding the source of the leak, you can pop just a few drops of food colouring into the tank. Just don’t leave the food colouring in the toilet bowl too long after you’ve found your leak, as it may stain the bowl.

When you flush

When you flush your toilet and the water keeps running into the pan, you could need a new washer or a new flush valve depending on the age of your toilet.

There are loads of different reasons for a leaky toilet, but these tend to be the most common.

If you need a hand fixing your leaking toilet, call our friendly team at Grace Plumbing. Our local plumbers are fully certified to get the job done right. We offer free quotes and great rates, servicing Auckland for over 20 years.

Contact us today!

We’ve been servicing East Auckland with our team of plumbers for over 20 years.

There is nothing more frustrating than a clogged toilet, especially when it keeps happening over and over again! Diagnosing the cause of your clogged toilet can often seem like an impossible task, how do you know where to look? And how can you prevent it from happening again?

With a team of experienced and professional plumbers, we take the guesswork out of clogged toilets. Having seen and handled every situation you could imagine, we are able to provide you with an easy to follow guide on the most common reasons for a clogged toilet, what causes the block to occur and what you can do to fix it so you can start enjoying the comforts of your bathroom with peace of mind.

The Most Common Reasons Your Toilet Is blocking

For your average household, repeated blocking of the toilet is usually due to one of these main issues:

Tree Roots

If you hear a gargling sound from your toilet or shower this could be a bigger issue somewhere in your sewer line. This blockage means instead of air flowing through the lines it pushes back and causes the gurgling sound.

What to do?

First up, you can try to plunge the toilet with a standard home handyman plunger. Make sure it completely covers the drain hole and give it a good 10-15 plunges to see if the blockage clears. If this does not help the situation, it suggests that your blockage is a much larger job and you’re going to need the help of a well-equipped plumber.

We use a tool called a ‘warthog’ to go down the line using hydrojets. This can clear tree roots for a short-term fix. Alternatively, we can use CCTV cameras to identify the exact location of the roots causing the blockage. We can then dig up that area, clear it of roots and replace the drain pipe in the affected section.

Items that shouldn’t be flushed have been flushed

The only two things that should be put down the toilet are human waste and toilet paper. While this seems like an obvious answer, there are many products that have been marketed as ‘flushable,’ flushable wipes are a prime example. While some items can be flushed before repeated blocking occurs, we have seen first-hand what a build-up of cotton pads, flushable wipes and q tips can do to the plumbing system of your home.

Flushable wipes are an especially major problem here in NZ. Despite what the name suggests, they actually do not break down efficiently in your plumbing. The term ‘flushable’ is only used to mean that they won’t’ come back into the bowl after you flush them. Many of them fail to disintegrate as they should. Instead, they create and contribute to major blockages in sewer systems.

What to do?

Our best piece of advice for those who are experiencing repeated blocking of their toilet would be to call a licenced plumber, not only can they clear the blockage for you, but they can also prevent further damage down the line, such as mainline sewage leaks which are a messy, and expensive job! Your plumber will be able to tell you the cause of your blocking and will be able to let you know what is and what isn’t ok to flush down the loo.

Too much toilet paper use

This may come as a surprise to some, as toilet paper is designed to be flushed, right? While this is true, too much toilet paper can actually restrict the flow of water to the main pipes, causing a ‘dry ball’ of waste that can have disastrous consequences. A buildup of toilet paper in your plumbing system is much like paper mache, as it layers throughout your pipes it can harden and become a rock-like substance, resulting in a repeated clogged toilet.

What to Do?

When you are experiencing a slower flush, or are noticing the water isn’t draining away as freely as it once did, we would recommend you begin reducing the amount of toilet paper you are using. With the average household using over 20,000 sheets of toilet paper per year, it’s easy to see how blockages occur!

If you’re not noticing a difference in your toilet flushing system after reducing your toilet paper usage, we would recommend you enlist the expertise of a professional plumber, they will be able to assess the issue at hand and can provide you with the services and advice you need to keep your bathroom in working order.

Clogged Toilet Trap

While some toilet clogs can be cleared and flushed with ease, certain build-ups require a little more assistance. We usually see clogged toilet traps when blockages have formed around the connecting bend of your drainage system. Similar to your sink’s P trap, your toilet has an S trap, and this is commonplace for waste to build up. Whether it be overloading, a weak water flow or old age, this S trap is the point where your toilet meets the wider drainage system, so it’s important to keep it clear.

What to do?

When earlier blockages like these are not cleared correctly, your problems will continue to persist, eventually carrying the clog further down the drains, resulting in a much bigger job. That is why we would recommend getting your trusted plumber in to clear the blockage and provide you with their advice in preventing the build-up of waste in the S Trap of your toilet.

Looking For A Trusted Plumber?

For all of your toilet enquiries, no matter how big or small, the team at Grace Plumbing is here to help. With over 20 years of experience, we can provide you with the very best industry services and advice you can trust. Give us a call today on 022 671 8125 so we can get you sorted.

Renovating your bathroom is an exciting job! Maximising the space you have available will not only add value to your home but will create a wonderful extension of your internal layout.

Knowing what to spend your money on to achieve the best results can often be tricky, who do you hire? And what do you invest in? To answer these important questions, we have compiled the 5 most common mistakes made during a bathroom renovation and provided you with handy alternatives that will make the process a seamless and stress-free experience for both you and the team of professionals.

1. Not Engaging A Plumber Prior To The Planning Stage

Forgetting how important your plumber is during the planning process of your bathroom is the number one common mistake made during the renovation process. Seeking advice from a professional prior to work being done will ensure you are getting relevant and accurate advice from an experienced bathroom specialist.

Engaging with a plumber prior to the planning stages of your bathroom renovation will give you a realistic picture of what to expect throughout the process. Whether you have a particular look in mind, or if you have decided to shift the toilet or taps, a registered plumber can support you in doing it properly. The key to any bathroom renovation is avoiding costly mistakes and hazardous oversights, all of which is easily done if you have an untrained eye.

Our best advice for planning a bathroom renovation: Enlist in the services of a fully certified, experienced plumber before you start.

2. Not Using New Zealand Fitment Fixtures

Finding your fixtures on the internet can be an exciting and creative task throughout your bathroom renovation, but the risks associated with these imported options makes it our number two most common mistake.

The problem with imported fixtures is that they are not backed by New Zealand plumbing merchants, which means, once they arrive at your door there are no guarantees and no set standards for the quality of their construction or their usability in your bathroom.

When you purchase your fixtures through a plumbing merchant, who then pays for the plumber’s time, you are securing a warranty on the products and a guarantee of their compatibility with your bathroom, protecting you from costly repairs later on.

When it comes to bathrooms, construction is everything, which is why choosing fixtures the professionals prefer to use is the surest way to renovate your bathroom to a high-quality standard.

3. Not Having Your Fixtures On Site

Our number three most common mistake made during a bathroom renovation is not having your fixtures on site before the work commences. The plumber cannot start if they do not have the in-wall mixers for the shower and bath, the bath and the acrylic shower tray if you are not having a tiled shower.

Specifications for everything else, such as the vanities and toilets and showers should be emailed to your plumber prior to starting and a copy of them on site is always a good idea.

Doing this will ensure your plumber can do their job properly and carry out the work on time, saving you the cost of additional visits.

4. DIY

How hard could knocking down some walls and joining a bit of plumbing be? As it happens, very. Perhaps the demolition of walls and cabinets is straightforward and easy for some, but the DIY demolition of plumbing fixtures could turn into a sticky situation!

Our number four biggest mistake for bathroom renovations turns out to be the riskiest for anyone doing all or part of the work themselves. DIY bathrooms are more popular than ever, with kit sets available and a range of easy to install designs, why wouldn’t you give it a go?

The installation and repair of your water fixtures is the most important part of any bathroom, as they are the primary function of its use. Working with a certified and registered plumber to properly install your plumbing and taps would be one of our best pieces of advice for any DIYer.

5. Over Spending

Keeping on budget throughout the process of renovations can be a tightrope, that is why our number five common mistake made during a bathroom renovation is overspending.

Purchasing overpriced new toilets, sinks taps and showers is the quickest way to gobble up your allocated budget. We would recommend shopping around and enlisting the advice and expertise of an experienced plumbing team. Not surprisingly, plumbers are involved in bathroom renovations from the beginning, meaning they can give you the best tips on where to spend your money.

Keep in mind the benefits of saving money through timeless fixtures, choosing simple and modern options will ensure your bathroom doesn’t prematurely date and your renovations will not need costly updates every few years.
Economising on fittings will keep you within budget without missing out on the new experience of stylish new taps and an improved water system.

Get In Touch

Working with one team that specialises in bathroom renovations and repairs will ensure you are receiving the best, up to date industry knowledge for the job. Working with Grace Plumbing throughout your bathroom renovation and repairs will guarantee the work being done is on time, on budget, and made to stand the test of time.
Give us a call for a free no-obligation quote on 0226718125. We can offer you a full range of services, no matter how big or small the renovation.

If you’ve been looking around for a firm to repair your leaky hot water cylinder or to handle your planned bathroom renovations, the odds are that you’ve come across the term ‘Master Plumber’. You might be wondering how these firms are different from other tradespeople and whether they’re worth making sure your chosen plumber is a member of the association.

In this article, we’ll discuss four reasons why you should consider using a Master Plumber for your gasfitting, plumbing, and drainlaying needs.

What Is A Master Plumber?

Master Plumber firms are members of New Zealand’s Master Plumbers organisation. This group has been around for 120 years and, with 18 associations and branches around the country, is dedicated to excellence in gasfitting, plumbing, and drainlaying.

To qualify for membership, plumbing businesses must agree to ongoing Quality Assurance reviews. These ensure that Master Plumber members perform at their best and offer their customers exceptional plumbing, gasfitting, and drainlaying services and workmanship.

Now that you know what a Master Plumber is, we’ll cover what factors make them stand out.

1. They’re Fully Authorised Tradies

Did you know that it’s illegal to do most sanitary plumbing, gasfitting, and drainlaying by yourself in New Zealand? That is because it’s ‘restricted’ work due to the health and safety risks inherent to such projects. Poorly done plumbing can be an expensive mistake to make – and you risk voiding your insurance, too.

This means that you must use an authorised tradesperson for any plumbing, gasfitting, and drainlaying work. Choosing Master Plumbers means that you won’t have to take the time to painstakingly assess your plumber’s qualifications, as all member firms are authorised to carry out all the work they do.
All Master Plumbers are also required to have a Certifying tradesperson on their team. These tradies have the highest qualifications in the industry and are responsible for making sure that their company’s work is done to a competent standard.

2. A High Quality Of Work Is Assured

As part of their membership requirements, Master Plumbers must undergo regular, ongoing Quality Assurance reviews. This ensures that they’re consistently held to high standards, setting them apart from other plumbers in the industry.

These reviews assess whether the business is performing at maximum health and safety and quality standards. They make sure that all Master Plumbers are providing the best possible services to their customers.
All Master Plumbers must also comply with a good practice code as well as a code of conduct.

3. You’ll Get The Job Done Right

Master Plumbers are fully qualified to handle any plumbing, gasfitting, and drainlaying needs you might have. Whether you need a leaky tap fixed, have minor renovations planned, or are looking at installing new piping entirely from scratch, you can rely on Master Plumbers to get the job done to a high standard.

4. Peace Of Mind With A 12-Month Guarantee

In the unlikely event of substandard workmanship or the loss of your advance to a contractor if they go into liquidation, you’ll be fully protected with a 12-month residential Master Plumbers guarantee. Best of all, it’s easy to make claims with a convenient claim form.

If you’re ready to turn to a skilled team of Master Plumbers guaranteed to bring you excellent results, Grace Plumbing is here to help. To request a quote or to learn more about our services, please drop us a line at 022 671 8125 or email us at amelia@graceplumbing.co.nz.

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