On the 21st of July,1976, around 4,000 World War II veterans were reunited with each other at the 58th American Legion's Convention in Philadelphia. It was supposed to be a day of reminiscing and revelry; but something went wrong a few days after the celebration: 34 people died from a mysterious illness.

It was later discovered by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that an entirely new strain of disease had killed these people: Legionella or Legionnaire's Disease. The investigation team reported that the bacteria had thrived in the hotel's cooling towers; and these structures spread the deadly pathogens through the hotel's air conditioning system. But plumbers in West Vancouver believe that it's more than an HVAC issue, as it's also a plumbing problem.

Legionella can thrive in water, and spread throughout unmaintained plumbing and HVAC systems. This is important to consider since you brush your teeth, wash your hands, and bathe with water delivered by your plumbing. If the water in your system is at an ideal temperature range for these microorganisms to thrive, the Legionella will continue to threaten the health of your family.

Cannot survive above 60 degrees

According to the U.K. Health and Safety Executive, the ideal condition for Legionella to thrive is water with a temperature of between 20 and 45 degrees Celsius. Below 20 degrees, Legionella will continue to survive, but lapse into a dormant state. Your best bet in eliminating the nefarious bacteria is by setting your Vancouver water heater to above 60 degrees.

Experts say the disinfection range happens around 70 to 80 degrees, at which temperature these bacteria die. In fact, Legionella would only last two minutes at best in water heated to a temperature of 66 degrees. It's for this reason that health officials strongly recommend keeping the water at temperatures no lower than 60 degrees.

What about scalding?

Of course, with water at these germ-killing temperatures, there's also an increased risk of being scalded. Experts say that people can suffer second-degree burns from a three-second exposure to water at 60 degrees. As a result, officials are calling for an amendment of the current National Plumbing Code in Canada to lower the prescribed temperature to 49 degrees Celsius.

Keep in mind that the temperature pertains to the storage temperature for tank-type heaters. Experts say hot water can eventually be delivered at a lower temperature to prevent scalds.


Practitioners of some professions never seem to run out of clients, or jobs to take on. One such occupation is plumbing-wherein practitioners seem to be called upon to attend to just about every little issue homeowners may have with their plumbing. Many of these issues are the results of simple misdemeanors at home.

Indeed, households throughout Canada seem to be besieged by an endless stream of difficulties that require the services of qualified plumbers. The situations that lead to the need for plumbing services in Vancouver or elsewhere in the country, for that matter-often result from the homeowner's carelessness or negligence. While a plumber may be only too glad to attend to such problems, he's also certain to advise you against doing things that can lead to nasty plumbing situations. Here's a list of common crimes against plumbing that you can easily avoid:

For instance, leaving hoses connected during winter is not a very wise thing to do, especially in chilly British Columbia. It can cause freezing of the outdoor faucet or the water supply pipe and can even damage the hose, itself. Overlooking this minor gardening task would lead to another visit of your friendly neighborhood plumber.

Using vent pipes for purposes other than venting is another common mistake committed by homeowners. People often pass data cables for their internet or TV reception through these vents as they conveniently lead out to the rooftop. They may not realize that vent pipes should be completely unobstructed as they admit outside air to maximize drain function, and prevent sewer gases from coming up into the house due to negative pressure caused by draining. This is likely to bring about another issue for plumbers to address.

Drilling, cutting, attaching screws, or nailing into walls which harbor concealed pipes is another careless homeowner practice that provides contractors for plumbing in Surrey with more tasks. The worst thing you can do, however, and a practice akin to plumbing suicide, is to use your toilet as a trash can. The inconvenience and hygiene problems this will bring to your household will be enormous; and will also keep your plumber busy.

Homeowners are not likely to be free of the need for plumbers at any time soon. While their services are available, however, homeowners should pull their weight in looking after their plumbing systems. Plumbers are essential, but homeowners must act responsibly too.


Some modern plumbing and sewage system designs enable installation without having to cut through concrete flooring. One example is Saniflo's system which macerates solid waste with high-speed cutting blades in a small chamber behind the toilet so the waste water can be easily conducted out of the room without need for the usual large-gauge sewer pipes. Installing this system is as easy-all you need is to connect to existing pipes to drain wastewater effectively.

This is an example of above-floor plumbing, where the system is installed without burying pipes and other plumbing systems several feet underground. A typical plumber in Port Coquitlam suggests this set-up, mostly because it's cost-friendly and easier to build. But there's another reason for its wide use: most plumbers view cutting through concrete as inappropriate for plumbing jobs.

Some plumbers still install below-floor plumbing; but they take note the "red flags" of engaging in such an activity. As much as possible, they stick to above-floor plumbing when adding an entirely new bathroom to an existing house. They usually choose to cut through concrete as a last resort-if the plumbing job really calls for it. Why?


Many plumbers cannot be sure about what lies beyond a concrete slab when they cut through it. It could be soil, bedrock, or even a room on a lower floor. If it were the third, it will be difficult for the plumber to install new plumbing.

Adding new sewage lines is not advisable in multistory buildings. Instead, plumbers install a soil stack outside the building. The soil stack is a long pipe installed at the side of the house adjacent to the bathroom that drains waste from the toilet to the septic tank. For sinks, tubs, and showers, a smaller pipe called a waste stack can be installed.

High risk of seepage

Even with perfect cuts, cutting through concrete may bring unwanted problems like water and gas seepage. Leaks could spring up all over the place. A New Westminster plumber working for Milani says the repair costs for such problems could be high.

Noise and dust

Cutting through concrete requires heavy machinery that generates a lot of noise and dust during operation. Aside from the hefty cost of such a service (ranging from a few hundred to a thousand dollars per square foot), concrete dust doesn't go away easily.


Plumbing-it's a job not for everyone, and certainly not for the faint of heart (or weak of stomach). Between dealing with leaky faucets and clogged drains, a plumber could also be called upon in matters of the lavatory. The subject of dealing with human waste is sure to sap the wills of lesser men, but certainly not the plumbers. One has to hold some special reverence for these brave men for merely handling the refuse of others, figuratively and literally.

Canada seems a likely place for plumbing disasters just waiting to happen. The country is home to many people who live large, having jobs and lifestyles that involve large meals, and do everything else, including their personal hygiene activities, in correspondingly large fashion. It's the job of Vancouver plumbing companies to make sure that the fixtures and plumbing in their homes are up to the task.

A toilet backing up is just about any homeowner's nightmare. It's practically the (twice) dead coming back to life, except that this malodorous situation is far from being imaginary, and therefore much worse than the smell of your average zombie. Such plumbing problems occur often in densely populated urban spaces, such as Vancouver. Plumbers called upon to solve this putrid problem have to work expeditiously to reduce the time the residents have to endure the unpleasantness associated with this situation, and prevent the problem from spreading.

But attending to human waste isn't the only thing a Vancouver plumber has to contend with. He also has to deal with the typical plumber problems of leaky pipes, rusted water tanks, inefficient water systems, and so on. Real-life plumbers certainly put Nintendo's Mario to shame with the amount of waste they have to put up with on a regular basis.

Plumbers, especially those in colder areas, are also tasked with heater-related issues during the winter months. Residents in such areas need to be fastidious with heater maintenance, unless they are prepared to suffer cold baths and frozen piping. Plumbing companies in Canada, such as Milani, repair such systems if they fail, and are prepared to recommend systems that better suit a home's needs.

Plumbing-it's not a job for everyone, and it involves some unsavory tasks. But no matter where you live, you don't have to work on the plumbing yourself. Brave souls have dedicated their lives to this profession.


Northern Vancouver sits right on the Cascadia Subduction Zone, also referred to as the Cascadia Fault. The Juan de Fuca Plate and the North American Plate meet at this point just off the coast of Vancouver Island. Experts say that the city may be in danger of a mega-quake, notwithstanding its relatively safe history of major earthquakes happening only once every 500 years.

Water and gas pipes may be the first ones to get hit by the tremors, disrupting the flow of water in homes and causing fires. While it's anyone's guess when the next earthquake will be, Richmond plumbing firms suggest that you prepare for it. There's no telling whether or not the plates may decide to break the habit of one earthquake every 500 years.

Earthquake strapping

If you use a tank-type water heater, it's important that you secure the tank to keep it from falling and rupturing gas and water lines. A number of cities and towns have made it compulsory for homes and offices to secure their tanks with earthquake strapping. The straps are bolted to the walls to act as a restraint for the water heater.

The straps are attached at the front and rear of the water heater and usually go in pairs for maximum restraint capacity. The best place for your heater to be is in the corner and close to the wall for the straps to be easily placed. The straps are also called plumber's tape.

Earthquake shut-off valve

When gas lines rupture as a result of the tremor, it could set off an explosion that could destroy or damage multiple houses and buildings. In light of this, Vancouver plumbing services advise installing an earthquake shut-off valve for the gas lines. This will prevent the gas from leaking into the house and can consequently avert a catastrophe.

Like most shut-off valves, the earthquake shut-off valve can be operated manually to block the flow of gas during an earthquake. It should only be activated the moment you smell gas inside the house or hear the hissing of gas leaking out of a broken pipe. You may need a wrench for the shutoff procedure.

Seismic expansion joints

Most earthquake-proof buildings survive the tremor with little to no damage by moving with the tremor. Seismic expansion joints allow pipes to do the same thing to minimize the damage of the tremor to the pipes.


Spring cleaning often involves thoroughly tidying up one's house-from the basement to the attic-and fixing all sorts of things that need repair. This includes keeping Coquitlam plumbing systems in tip-top shape. Clearing clogged pipes and drain pumps is best done at this time. Here are some useful guidelines that allow homeowners to keep their pipes well-maintained throughout the seasons.

One can start by inspecting sump pumps to ascertain they are in working order. Checking them regularly makes sure they are ready for the expected increase in the volume of liquid flowing through a residential plumbing system as household members become more active with warmer weather setting in. Remember to replace the batteries in portable sump pumps with new ones. Even when left unused for extended periods, batteries are constantly being drained of power.

Aside from pumps, drainage systems should also be checked by homeowners after extended usage. Check the faucets in all bathrooms and the kitchen for any sign of potential leakage-especially the fixtures installed in backyards, as the winter months may expose faucet components to wear and tear.

Inspecting them could yield hints of small leaks or minor damage. Avoid major headaches by addressing the problem immediately or by replacing defective fixtures. Occasionally, twisting the valves under your sinks back and forth helps prevent them from sticking. Repeated temperature changes causing metal fixtures to expand and contract correspondingly could result in loose valves or in knobs freezing shut.

Pipes are not limited to kitchens and bathrooms. Overhead gutters and roofing systems use drainage pipes and PVC spouts where leaves and other solid debris could accumulate during winter, causing them to clog up. Spring is an ideal time for plumbers in Richmond, BC to unclog gutter systems and prime them for rainy weather that's sure to come in the late spring and summer.

As spring approaches, humidity fluctuates often; and wooden structures tend to suffer more from these changes. It is the perfect time to check if your wood installations enclosing water pipes are still safe for general use. If not, replace them immediately. Check out squidoo.com/spring-plumbing-tips2 for more tips on keeping pipes in top shape during spring.

A great deal of diseases can be transmitted through human waste, fluids, and even infected tissue paper. This is why hospitals, clinics, and other medical institutions are required by the government to adhere to standard protocols when it comes to disposing of their used needles, syringes, and other hazardous biological wastes.

Unlike refuse coming from residential or commercial properties, medical waste, also referred to as clinical waste, needs to be properly managed and eliminated to avoid the spread of diseases, pollutants, and toxins. Hence, health institutions that require assistance or advice regarding proper solid and liquid waste disposal often turn to experts from well-established companies, such as Milani, to make sure that their disposal methods are safe and effective.

Categories of Medical Waste

From surgical gloves to laboratory materials, medical waste can be classified into four categories. They could fall under radioactive, infectious, general, or hazardous waste, and are usually processed separately from ordinary trash (papers, plastic bottles, etc). Each type of clinical waste has specific management approaches and methods of containment.

Common Ways of Medical Waste Disposal

Establishments can choose to either hire a waste management company or set up an in-house waste processing unit. Waste management companies usually do solid and liquid waste removal services by picking up the packed trash and then transporting it to their facilities for treatment and incineration. On the other hand, smaller clinics or healthcare centers choose to invest in steam sterilizers or incinerators to manage their own clinical waste.

Alternative Medical Waste Management

Due to the rising threat of climate change and global warming, a number of environmental researchers are discovering and developing eco-friendly ways to dispose of medical waste. Because incinerators are known as producers of greenhouse gases, alternative devices and practices are currently preferred by some institutions. Green medical waste management technologies that are coupled with shredding include Steam Treatment, Microwave Exposure, Chemical Disinfection, and Hot Water/Chemical Sterilization.

Other than the usual sewer inspection, medical facilities are obliged to update themselves on the most recent practices of clinical waste management. And since the goals of such establishments are to cure and prevent the spread of disease, it's only right that they employ appropriate waste management techniques to support their main objective and purpose.
Water is life-no one can dispute that. The human body is mostly made up of water, plants need water to grow, and most of your household chores need water. It's no surprise that the first cities spawned close to the rivers; earlier civilizations realized how important water was to everyone's survival.

Today, Plumbers in Richmond BC continue to bring life into every home and office in BC, and will likely do so for as long as there's water to go around. Rivers and other sources of fresh water provided the first cities the means to grow their food, clean themselves, and quench their thirst. At first, there was hardly any plumbing. Back then, it was backbreaking work, i.e., fetching water from the river using buckets.

No more buckets

Around 4,000 to 3,000 B.C., the Indus civilization changed the way the world got its water. In 1922, a team of archaeologists stumbled upon ruins of two notable cities along the Indus River: Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro. What surprised them was the fact that they found clay pipes in the bathrooms that led to underground sewers. At least they didn't have to go to and from the river.

From clay to copper

At least 500 years later, settling along the Nile River, the ancient Egyptians took a giant leap toward plumbing. They were among the first to enhance the delivery of water by using copper pipes, a trend that still persists today. Plumbers in Vancouver say copper pipes are used mainly due to the fact that they are resistant against corrosion. They also ward off harmful bacteria.

Systematic sewers

It's not enough that plumbing lets fresh water in, as it also has to let waste water out. Along the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in the country we now know as Iraq, ancient Babylon developed the science of what is called “hydraulic engineering.” After all, it must've taken a complex system of canals and sewers to help grow the plants of the Hanging Gardens.

In general, the river civilizations knew a lot about water and plumbing. While modern cities don't use clay pipes anymore and have more advanced sewage systems, it wouldn't have been possible if the first cities hadn't introduced them. Vancouver plumbers still apply to this day the things we've learned from those ancient civilizations.

Determining the Right Size of Your Surrey Heating System

Do you often feel cold at home even with the heater on? For that matter, do you even feel any heat from the furnace or boiler at the basement? If you answered "yes" to either or both of these questions, there's a good chance that you don't have the right heater size.

Experts say it's not easy to determine what furnace or boiler fits the bill since several factors come into play. Still, it's necessary to get a clear idea of how much heating capacity you need for your home. This doesn't only apply to heating Surrey homes use, but also to air conditioning and plumbing. It's for this reason that sizing should be done by a professional.

Windows, siding, and roofing

Most of the time, the heater doesn't do the heating alone; rather, it works alongside other things that provide insulation. To note; windows, sidings, and roofs contribute to the collective effort of keeping the home at a comfortable temperature.

If you have quality windows, sidings, and roofs, you won't need a bulky or powerful heater because they help retain the heat for longer periods, reducing the need to operate the heater frequently. Statistics Canada reports that the average temperature for homes ranges between 20 to 22 degrees Celsius when the occupants are awake and 16 to 18 degrees Celsius when they are asleep. You shouldn't need a very powerful heater for that.

Manual J and Manual D

Manual J and Manual D are two familiar terms in the Surrey heating industry. These are used by heating contractors in load calculation and duct design for specific buildings' HVAC systems. Due to the complexity of such calculations, contractors today use computer software, rather than pen and paper to get an accurate assessment.

Both Manual J and Manual D are required by most building codes to determine how much heat should be supplied to the home. Nevertheless, many contractors still prefer the "rule of thumb," like one ton of cooling or heating for every 400 square feet. As a result, most of the heating and cooling systems in many North American homes are oversized by 30 to 200 percent.

Determining heat load isn't easy; and the consequences of an undersized or oversized heating system are critical. Furthermore, energy costs are notably higher than they were a few decades ago, such that many Canadians cannot afford to pay more than what is actually needed. Heating Surrey BC homes should be done with as much accuracy as possible; and using software may prove necessary. Consult with a reputable firm such as Milani on how to properly go about this.


Tips in Finding a Trustworthy Plumber in Vancouver

Vancouver may have experienced a cool spring this year, but locals are advised to brace themselves for extreme heat in the coming days. In fact, the local government has already issued tips on how to keep cool this summer and has set up drinking water stations in various parts of the city to help everyone stay hydrated all day.

Homeowners should be advised that temperatures exceeding 32 degrees can be harmful to a plumbing system. Extreme heat can boil water in the pipes, causing them to burst. Since repairing or replacing pipes may be too risky to undertake on your own, it’s best to call on a plumber in Vancouver.

Finding a plumber is easy as there may be several in your area. However, finding a plumber you can trust to do a quality job takes a lot of work. Asking recommendations from your friends or neighbors is a good place to start. This way, you can get first-hand information about the plumber’s professionalism, fees, and the overall quality of his service.

If your friends or neighbors hire a different plumber each time for their plumbing needs, chances are that they weren’t happy with the services they’ve been getting. That being the case, you can then do your own research. Contractors for home improvement projects typically work with a plumber so you can also ask them for recommendations. You can also ask your real estate agent. It's good to have several options before you make a final choice.

It's important to check if the plumber has a license to work in your area. You must also check their affiliations, if any, with the Plumbing Heating Cooling Contractors Association or the Quality Service Contractors. Having these affiliations means they've passed strict standards in work quality. A Vancouver plumber working under a company that has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau would also be someone you can trust.

Once you find a plumber you think may be right for the job, request him to do an inspection and assessment of your plumbing system. He should be able to give you the exact details of the repair or replacement work you'll need and what it could cost. A trustworthy plumber from reputable companies like Milani will provide you with an accurate cost estimate so you can plan your budget accordingly.

Skilled plumbers can do repair work within a reasonable timeframe. However, the quality of their work is still more important than how quickly the work is accomplished. An expert plumber Vancouver homeowners can rely on ensures that your plumbing system is running smoothly before signing off on the completed work.