Bathroom Renovations | Plumbing in Kitchener

For the past 25 years, WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing has been offering expert plumbing in Kitchener, Waterloo and surrounding area. That includes bathroom renovations! Our fully insured licensed master plumbers can do anything from toilet, tub, shower and vanity replacement to a complete rebuild of this important space. Keep reading to learn more! Trust WaterSmart with your next kitchen bathroom or plumbing project. Contact us today!

Kitchen Renovations | Plumbing in Kitchener

Since 1994, WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing has been offering expert plumbing in Kitchener, Waterloo and surrounding, and that includes plumbing for kitchen renovations. Our fully insured licensed master plumbers can do anything from faucet replacement to a complete rebuild of this all important space. Keep reading to learn more! Trust WaterSmart with your next kitchen renovation or plumbing project. Contact us today!

How to Fix a Leaking Faucet

Do you have a leaking faucet? WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing is here to help. Read on to learn how to repair a leaking faucet. If you need assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact WaterSmart and one of our expert plumbers will be happy to perform the job. We have been in business for 25 years, and offer top notch plumbing services - no job is too big or too small. Contact us today!

Water Softener Salt Series: How Water Softener Salt Helps Your Water Softener

How does water softener salt help your water softener? Is it necessary and what does it actually do? In this final segment of our Water Softener Salt Series we will answer the question how does water softener salt help your water softener?

We will explain the function of salt in the softening process, tell you how you can determine the quality of water softener salt, and help you decide which type of salt to buy. The professionals at WaterSmart systems can answer any and all of your water salt or softener questions.

We have been in the home water business in the Kitchener-Waterloo region for more than 25 years, so we know water. Contact us today and let us help you choose the best water softener and salt for your family's needs.

  

"My wife and I recently purchased a home that did not have a water softener since the house was built. One company advised us to use the plumbing stack for drainage because of the location of the main water pipe, this was understandable. However, Watersmart advised us with a better alternative. Since they were licensed plumbers, they were able to find a location to cut some water pipes, and install the water softener near our laundry drain. They are very skilled professionals, and have great customer service. We also bought a reverse osmosis from them. They gave us detailed instructions on how to operate the softener and reverse osmosis. I would recommend these guys. Thank you Watersmart."

-William - Read more customer comments

 

Do You Need a Water Softener?

 If you live in an area that has hard water, then you may want to consider purchasing a water softener. Even though hard water is safe to drink it does have some big drawbacks such as:

  • It can cause mineral build ups in your pipes thus damaging them

  • It can cause mineral deposits on appliances such as your hot water tank causing them to wear out faster

  • It is harder on your clothing

  • It requires you to use more soap to get things clean

How Does Water Softener Salt Help Your Water Softener?

 So how does water softener salt help your water softener? Is it necessary? What does it actually do? Your water softener is made up of two separate chambers. The first chamber is called a resin tank and it contains resin beads. The water softening actually takes place inside the resin tank. The second chamber is called a brine tank and it contains the water softener salt.

 

Ion Exchange Takes Place To Remove Hardness

Water softeners use a chemical process called ion exchange in order to make your hard water soft. Hard water contains minerals or ions such as calcium and magnesium and sometimes manganese, iron, and radium, which make your water hard. The water softener's job is to get rid of these hardness ions and thus leave you with softer water. But how does this happen?

 

Positively Charged Minerals Attach to Negatively Charged Resin Beads

 Inside your resin tank, you will find negatively charged resin beads which have positively charged sodium ions magnetically attached to them. If you remember from your high school science classes, negative ions are attracted to positive ions. Your water softener pumps your hard water through this bed of resin beads. The positively charged hardness ions are then exchanged with the sodium ions.

 

Salt Brine Washes Away The Hard Ions During Regeneration

 After a while, the resin beads will fill up with hardness ions and they won't be able to attract anymore. At this point, the beads will need "recharging" or regeneration. Your water softener will go offline and the brine tank will start to work. Salt brine from the brine tank is pumped into the resin tank during regeneration.

The salt brine washes away the hardness ions and replaces them with a fresh layer of sodium ions. Once the regeneration is finished, the water softener can then go back online and start softening water again.

 

Do I Need To Purchase High-Quality Water Softener Salt?

 

The cheapest type of water softener salt that you can buy is rock salt. Rock salt is a naturally occurring mineral that is found underground and it contains minerals that can leave a build up in your tank meaning you will need to clean it out a few times per year. Solar salt is created when seawater is evaporated by the sun.

It is more soluble than rock salt but it may have difficulty coping with extremely hard water. Evaporated salts are usually the most expensive type of salt, however, they are the purest. They are the least likely to cause a build up in your water softener.

 

 

How Can I Determine The Quality Of A Water Softener Salt?

 

You can tell the quality of water softener salt by looking at its purity. The closer the salt is to 100% pure, the higher the quality. However, the purer the salt, the more expensive it is to buy.

 

Which Type of Salt Should You Buy?

 

The best answer is to ask your water softener dealer which type of salt will work best for your particular brand of water softener. If any type of salt will work equally well then ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you on a Budget? Rock salt is the least expensive.

  • Do you want your water softener to last longer? Evaporated salt is the purest form of salt so it is less likely to leave a damaging build up.

  • Are you on a reduced sodium diet? Potassium Chloride does not contain sodium so it is the healthier choice for those who are on a restricted sodium diet.  

 

WaterSmart - The Best Choice For Water Softening

 WaterSmart is a locally owned, family run business that has been servicing the Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, Cambridge and surrounding areas for over two decades. We know this area and the unique water challenges it presents. We understand water softeners and we know which type of softener would be the best to meet your particular needs. If you need to purchase a new water softener or if your current softener isn't performing the way it should, contact us. We sell the best water softeners available for our area and we service any other make or model that you may have, even if you didn't purchase your softener from us.

Water Softener Salt Series: How Water Softener Salt Helps Your Water Softener

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How does water softener salt help your water softener? Is it necessary and what does it actually do? In this final segment of our Water Softener Salt Series we will answer the question how does water softener salt help your water softener?

We will explain the function of salt in the softening process, tell you how you can determine the quality of water softener salt, and help you decide which type of salt to buy.

The professionals at WaterSmart systems can answer any and all of your water salt or softener questions. We have been in the home water business in the Kitchener-Waterloo region for more than 25 years, so we know water. Contact us today and let us help you choose the best water softener and salt for your family's needs.

 

"My wife and I recently purchased a home that did not have a water softener since the house was built. One company advised us to use the plumbing stack for drainage because of the location of the main water pipe, this was understandable. However, Watersmart advised us with a better alternative. Since they were licensed plumbers, they were able to find a location to cut some water pipes, and install the water softener near our laundry drain. They are very skilled professionals, and have great customer service. We also bought a reverse osmosis from them. They gave us detailed instructions on how to operate the softener and reverse osmosis. I would recommend these guys. Thank you Watersmart."

-William - Read more customer comments

 

Do You Need a Water Softener?

 

If you live in an area that has hard water, then you may want to consider purchasing a water softener. Even though hard water is safe to drink it does have some big drawbacks such as:

  • It can cause mineral build ups in your pipes thus damaging them

  • It can cause mineral deposits on appliances such as your hot water tank causing them to wear out faster

  • It is harder on your clothing

  • It requires you to use more soap to get things clean

How Does Water Softener Salt Help Your Water Softener?

 

So how does water softener salt help your water softener? Is it necessary? What does it actually do? Your water softener is made up of two separate chambers. The first chamber is called a resin tank and it contains resin beads. The water softening actually takes place inside the resin tank. The second chamber is called a brine tank and it contains the water softener salt.

 

Ion Exchange Takes Place To Remove Hardness

 

Water softeners use a chemical process called ion exchange in order to make your hard water soft. Hard water contains minerals or ions such as calcium and magnesium and sometimes manganese, iron, and radium, which make your water hard. The water softener's job is to get rid of these hardness ions and thus leave you with softer water. But how does this happen?

 

Positively Charged Minerals Attach to Negatively Charged Resin Beads

 

Inside your resin tank, you will find negatively charged resin beads which have positively charged sodium ions magnetically attached to them. If you remember from your high school science classes, negative ions are attracted to positive ions. Your water softener pumps your hard water through this bed of resin beads. The positively charged hardness ions are then exchanged with the sodium ions.

 

Salt Brine Washes Away The Hard Ions During Regeneration

 

After a while, the resin beads will fill up with hardness ions and they won't be able to attract anymore. At this point, the beads will need "recharging" or regeneration. Your water softener will go offline and the brine tank will start to work. Salt brine from the brine tank is pumped into the resin tank during regeneration. The salt brine washes away the hardness ions and replaces them with a fresh layer of sodium ions. Once the regeneration is finished, the water softener can then go back online and start softening water again. 

Do I Need To Purchase High-Quality Water Softener Salt?

 

The cheapest type of water softener salt that you can buy is rock salt. Rock salt is a naturally occurring mineral that is found underground and it contains minerals that can leave a build up in your tank meaning you will need to clean it out a few times per year.

Solar salt is created when seawater is evaporated by the sun. It is more soluble than rock salt but it may have difficulty coping with extremely hard water. Evaporated salts are usually the most expensive type of salt, however, they are the purest. They are the least likely to cause a build up in your water softener.

How Can I Determine The Quality Of A Water Softener Salt?

 

You can tell the quality of water softener salt by looking at its purity. The closer the salt is to 100% pure, the higher the quality. However, the purer the salt, the more expensive it is to buy.

 

Which Type of Salt Should You Buy?

The best answer is to ask your water softener dealer which type of salt will work best for your particular brand of water softener. If any type of salt will work equally well then ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you on a Budget? Rock salt is the least expensive.

  • Do you want your water softener to last longer? Evaporated salt is the purest form of salt so it is less likely to leave a damaging build up.

  • Are you on a reduced sodium diet? Potassium Chloride does not contain sodium so it is the healthier choice for those who are on a restricted sodium diet.

 

  

WaterSmart - The Best Choice For Water Softening

 

WaterSmart is a locally owned, family run business that has been servicing the Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, Cambridge and surrounding areas for over two decades. We know this area and the unique water challenges it presents. We understand water softeners and we know which type of softener would be the best to meet your particular needs. If you need to purchase a new water softener or if your current softener isn't performing the way it should, contact us. We sell the best water softeners available for our area and we service any other make or model that you may have, even if you didn't purchase your softener from us.

Backflow Testing in Kitchener

What is backflow testing and do I need to have it done? If backflow is a term that you are not familiar with, then read on. This post will explain what backflow is, how it can be prevented, and the regulations around backflow testing in Kitchener and the surrounding areas. If you require backflow testing, contact the certified professionals at WaterSmart. We will walk you through the process and submit all the required paperwork to help you comply with the regulations.

 

 

Contact WaterSmart

 

 

Kitchener 519-745-3170    Waterloo 519-886-7331   Cambridge 519-886-7331

Guelph 519-836-2543

 

"Did an amazing and cost-efficient job. Did what they said they were going to do and at a great price." -Mary Ann Comartin

 

Read More Customer Comments

 

 

What Is Backflow?

 

Water typically flows into our homes and businesses. However, sometimes the water flows in the opposite direction. This is known as backflow. Backflow can be the cause of dangerous pollutants entering our water system. If a garden hose is connected to a container of lethal weed killer, and the water reverses direction, then the poisonous chemicals can be sucked back into the water supply.

 

How Can You Prevent Backflow?

 

In order to prevent backflow, you can install a backflow preventer (BFP). This is a mechanical device that stops unwanted substances and chemicals from entering the city's safe water supply. There are various types of backflow prevention devices available. These devices are designed to help protect the different kinds of cross connections. If you are unsure whether or not you have one already installed, you can call a plumber, contractor or other professionals who will be able to identify it for you.

 

The city of Kitchener is committed to ensuring that their residents have access to a clean and safe water supply. Because of this, they have introduced a backflow prevention bylaw. Its purpose is to make sure that commercial, industrial, institutional, and large multi-residential buildings are following the strict guidelines to prevent backflow contamination.

 

Where Do Backflow Prevention Devices Need To Be Installed?

Backflow prevention devices need to be installed in the following locations. For more details, click here.

 

1. Commercial, Industrial, Institutional, or Large Multi-residential Buildings

 

Backflow can be very dangerous, especially if it occurs in commercial, industrial, institutional, or large multi-residential buildings where the potential for larger quantities of contaminants is possible. Backflow Prevention Devices are usually located where the water enters the building.

 

 

 

2. Sprinkler And Lawn Irrigation Systems

 

Backflow can occur in sprinkler and lawn irrigation systems. If the heads of these systems become submerged during heavy rains, then contaminates such as animal waste, fertilizers, and pesticides can backflow into the drinking water. By law, these systems must have backflow prevention devices installed and annually tested.

 

 

3. Boilers, Tanks, Cooling Jackets, and Fire Hydrants Attached To A Potable Water Supply

 

If any of the above are attached to a potable (able to be safely consumed by humans) water supply and a non-potable fluid is present and there is potential for that fluid to enter the clean water supply, a backflow prevention device must be installed.

 

Backflow Testing In Kitchener

 

Backflow prevention devices must be tested under the following circumstances:

1. When they are first installed

2. When they are cleaned, repaired, or overhauled

3. When they are relocated

4. Annually

 Who Can Perform The Backflow Prevention Device Test?

 

Only a certified backflow technician registered with the corresponding cities can perform the backflow prevention device test. WaterSmart is registered with Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, and Guelph as an approved company to install, repair, and annually test backflow prevention devices and equipment. If you require backflow testing, come and see the plumbing and service experts at WaterSmart. Our fully insured licensed master plumbers have been serving KW, Cambridge, Guelph, and the surrounding areas since 1994.

 

Sources

Backflow Prevention

Backflow Prevention

BPD Image - By Verifiedbackflow (Own work) [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

No Hot Water? Here Are The Top 5 Causes

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Did you jump in the shower this morning and discover there's no hot water in your home? What a bad way to start the day! Fear not, because WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing is here to help. In this article, we outline the top five causes as to why you may have no hot water, and what you can do next. For 25 years, WaterSmart has been offering expert plumbing services in Kitchener, Waterloo, and surrounding towns. If you have no hot water or are experiencing other plumbing issues, contact us today - no job it too big or too small!

 
 

Kitchener 519-745-3170    Waterloo 519-886-7331   Cambridge 519-886-7331
 
Guelph 519-836-2543

 

"We have had very low water pressure for years. When I asked Paul to come out to look at our water system. He pointed out where potential problem areas were and recommended a solution. To make a long story short, we now have fantastic water pressure in all areas of the home and the water is silky soft. Paul showed up at the time he said he would, was done quicker then expected and explained how everything would work. Great experience!"
- Rob Henry

Read more customer reviews here.

 

No Hot Water? Here Are the Top 5 Causes 


Once you discover you have no hot water, it's important to pinpoint the cause. You don't want to be stuck unable to bathe or properly do the dishes and launder your clothes for too long. To help you find the reason why your hot water may have disappeared, here's our list of the top 5 causes of no hot water in the home.

 

1. Blown fuse


A lack of hot water might be the result of a blown fuse or tripped breaker that has caused your heater to shut down. In most cases, resetting the breaker will be enough to get it up and running. If this is happening a lot, however, it might be worth replacing the breaker or fuse with a higher amperage unit. 


In the event of a short in the wiring, that will not only prevent the heater from functioning properly, it's also a serious fire hazard. Be sure to check all wires for signs of damage and replace as needed.

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A blown fuse or tripped breaker may be the reason you have no hot water

 

2. Supply vs. Demand

One of the most common issues is quite simply an empty hot water tank. Using too much hot water in a short period of time will empty the tank’s supply faster than the heating elements can replace it. 

Most tanks require half an hour to build up a sufficient supply once drained, so you'll be left with nothing but cold water in the meantime.

If this is a frequent occurrence, you may want to consider upgrading to a larger heater. Water heaters are often installed based on an estimate of the demand for the current residents. 

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Circumstances change, and you should make sure your heater is equipped to meet the currents demand of your household.

 

3. Leaking Hot Water Tank

Most of the time, a leaky hot water tank is caused by faulty connections or valves. If not properly addressed, this small nuisance can quickly turn into a major problem, namely serious flooding and water damage. Be very careful when checking for leaks because the water here may still be hot, despite it not reaching the upper levels of your home.

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If you have a leaking hot water tank, call a plumber immediately.

 

4. Broken dip tube

The dip tube is where incoming cold water enters the water heater tank. If functioning properly, the dip tube shoots cold water to the bottom of the tank where it can be quickly and easily heated. A broken dip tube leaves water at the top of the tank, where the outlet for hot water also resides.

A broken dip tube, therefore, might mean cold water is being poured into your home’s hot water pipes before being adequately heated.

It's best to call a plumber to deal with this one!

 
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5. Sediment buildup

Water that enters your heater tank often carries dissolved minerals, small amounts of sand, and other debris - especially in Kitchener-Waterloo and surrounding areas, where the water is especially hard.

While the water sits in and is heated by your water heater, this debris settles to the bottom of the tank. Since most water heater burners are at the bottom of the tank, a buildup of debris can make your water heater less effective. 

Note: This issue is often accompanied by a pinging sound.

Here's a look at how to flush your hot water heater.

 

No hot water? Call WaterSmart!

 

A great plumber can be hard to find! With locations in Kitchener and Waterloo, the fully licensed and insured master plumbers at WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing are able to quickly and expertly perform any plumbing job.

For the past 25 years, it has been our policy to always do the job right the first time with a minimum of inconvenience to you - our customers are our number one priority.

Don't hesitate to contact us if you have no hot water, or if you require plumbing services of any kind.

You can trust WaterSmart to complete any size job with the highest quality workmanship and care - contact us today.

 

GE vs Fleck vs Water Boss vs Whirlpool vs Kenmore vs Aquasana vs Kinetico vs WaterSmart Water Softeners

In this article we will discuss how to compare GE, Fleck, Water Boss, Whirlpool, Kenmore, Aquasana, Kinetico, and WaterSmart water softeners. We will also review a selection of these companies products. Contact us at Watersmart for advice on water softeners for your home. Most water softeners can be installed in a few hours.

 

"I chose to go with Watersmart Systems.
Best equipment, price, warranty and people!!"

-Kim Pickles
Read More Customer Comments

 

A Helpful Comparison Chart

 The following chart is a comparison of the leading water softeners on the market:

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How to Choose

 

1. Search Online For Product Comparisons

 Research the competitors online. By doing this you will develop an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of each product. This will allow you to better match up your requirements with the product that meets your specific needs, and make help you make a wise decision.

 

2. Research Customer Reviews

 Other customers have been down this road before. They have chosen a product and are happy to share their experiences with the reading public. By reading customer reviews you can narrow down the selection by deleting those with the consistently poorest reviews. Use sites like amazon.ca and homedepot.ca to find a wide selection of reviews.

 

3. Research Customer Complaints

 Google the products you are interested in with the phrase "customer complaints." This will allow you to see the most common complaints about the products. Ignore isolated complaints and look for recurring themes. This will give you a clearer picture of how the product is working in the real world. The products with the fewest complaints are probably the better ones.

 

Contact Us

Kitchener: 519-745-3170 | Waterloo: 519.886.7331; 
Cambridge: 519.886.7331 | Guelph: 519.836.2543

 

4. Research Common Problems

 Are there specific problems that seem to repeatedly crop up with the models you are researching? Check to see if those problems are major or minor; that is, whether they significantly affect the operation of the device.

Also determine what, if anything, the company is doing or has done to address the problem. If no one from the manufacturer is addressing the problem then you may be looking at a product with a poor customer service record.

 

5. Create A Short List

 Narrow down your options by creating a short list. Include those brands that seem to best fit your needs and set aside those that seem to be a poor fit.

 

6. Contact Distributors Of The Options On Your Short List

 Contact a sales representative at a distributor of a product on your list. Ask pertinent questions about the product you are interested in. How much does it cost? What are its strengths and weaknesses?

How does it compare with the competitors on your list? Are there any hidden service fees? Do they offer a guarantee over and above the one that comes with the unit? By asking these types of questions, you will be able to narrow your choice further.

 

7. Ask To See A Demonstration Of Your Preferred Unit In Action

 Can the supplier provide you with a demonstration of your preferred choice in action? This is an important step as it may reveal things that you were unaware of. For example, the product may be a lot louder than you anticipated. The product may operate more slowly than is advertised, and so on. If all goes well, it is almost time to make a final decision. 

8. ask supplier to provide you with three different references

Ask the supplier to provide you with the names of 3 families or businesses that are using the product. If they are prepared to discuss the product and are happy with their purchase then you should be ready to make your final decision.

 

Proudly Celebrating over 20 Years!

WaterSmart Systems & Plumbing

 
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Comparing Brands

 

WaterSmart WS-30

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The WaterSmart WS-30-S is a well-engineered product that can remove from 32,000 to 150,000 gpg (grains per gallon.) 

The product is also capable of removing chlorine along with its accompanying bad odors and taste.

It regenerates on demand based on water usage and uses only 37 gallons of water per regeneration.

Like most water softeners, the system requires an electrical connection and a drain for waste water. 

WaterSmart carries its own range of water softeners and reverse osmosis filters. You can find the full range here

 

GE 30,400 Water Softeners

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The GE 30,400 Grain Water Softener uses a salt-based system that can remove minerals from your home water supply.

The softener removes up to removes up to 95 gpg and 7 parts per million of clear water iron from your water supply. It typically uses 35.5 gallons of water during each cycle.

The system requires an electrical connection and a drain for waste water.

 

Fleck 5600SXT

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The Fleck 5600sxt digital metered softener is a well-designed system that uses salt to soften the hard water in your water source. 

It has some solid pros but also a few cons. Pros include a great warranty, metered regeneration, large capacity of 48,000 grain, and its effectiveness under operation.

Cons include that it is perhaps too large for smaller homes, being better suited to medium to large size homes, and the running costs of salt pellets.

Water Boss 700

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 The Water Boss 700 is a smaller, compact unit designed for properties with limited space and lower requirements. 

 The unit provides you provides you with soft water by removing calcium and magnesium from your water supply.

 Clear-water iron is also removed and it is equipped with a self-cleaning sediment filter.  

While not as capacious as the Fleck 5600SXT it still removes 22,100 grains during a regeneration cycle. It requires an electrical supply and a waste water outlet. 

 

Aquasana AQ-5300.55 3-Stage

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The Aquasana AQ-5300.55 3-Stage is an under the counter water filtration system designed to remove impurities from your water supply.

Clogging is reduced by a pre-filter and the unit is particularly suitable for areas that suffer from high sediment and salt levels.

The product is a reverse osmosis filtering system and not a water softener, therefore, it does not improve the water softness. A budget-priced model, it is nevertheless a popular product.

Kinetico Signature Series Water Softeners 

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This non-electric series of water softeners uses a dual tank system and water flow to move water through the system.

 Although quite expensive to purchase and install, the Kinetico products have been around for many years but are only available through their own network of in-home sales representatives and qualified distributors.

 

Want To Learn More?