Reducing Utility Bill Expense

Reducing Utility Bill Expense

As adults we all have utility bills and the best part is we have to pay them. When we were kids we always thought our parents were being mean when they said get out of the fridge, turn the light off when we aren’t using it, or don’t leave the faucet on, we never really knew why they were saying it. Now that we pay bills primarily utility bills we understand what they meant. Here are some money saving tips to keep our utility bills down.

Utility Bills

Utility bills are those annoying bills that the mail man delivers every month about the same time. Of course we have to pay them and most of balk at how expensive they can be. Paying these bills takes a lot of what we work for and can be overwhelming.

However not paying them means that we have no water, electricity, television, and gas and these bills just don’t go away we have to pay them. No pay means no services, which means we can’t eat, shower, do laundry or even store food.

When you look at these sky high bills and cringe at the thought of paying them, you sit back and start to evaluate what you can do to save money and make these bills affordable. So to help you with that we want to give some tips on the biggest utility bills.

Reduce Electricity Usage

Electricity is what we use to keep our house cool, food cool, water warm and lights on. This service can be abused the most with everyday living. We all want to hide from the heat, so we use AC in our homes if we keep our thermostat at 78 or higher our ac runs less and we use less energy.

Turning lights off when not in the room or they are not needed is a great help too, most lightbulbs are not energy efficient and even for a little thing they can burn up some energy. Make sure that appliances are running properly and set at proper temperatures. While these are all great tips not just one of them will show much savings, but when done together consistently the savings add up.

Water Conservation

Water is used by everyone in the world for one thing or another. Not only is water a valuable resource that can be depleted we also pay for our water usage and that can get costly. We can cut these costs by being aware of what we are using. When showering take quick showers, wash up and get out.

Measure loads of laundry so that water is wasted and costing us extra. Make sure that all faucets are water saving and there are no leaks or drips. Make sure that toilets are water minimizing and that all the seals are good so there are no leaks.

Phone Services

Phone service can be tricky, we all feel the need that we need to have a way to call for help. Most of us pay for a cell phone and a landline. By eliminating one of them usually the landline we can save that money.

Our cell phone will work almost anywhere and a landline even with no service will still call emergency number. You can get on a prepaid plan for cellular service that has unlimited everything. There are a lot of great packages out there for phone service.

We work hard for our money, so why not try to save as much as we can. We can cut corners on certain household bills and services. Not only do we save money but we can conserve our resources. So these tips are all great ways to save the money we work so hard for and bring attention to our wasteful habits. Now we all have a clear understanding of why our parents told us to turn lights off, close the fridge and stop wasting water!


How To Prevent A Kitchen Drain Clog

How To Prevent A Kitchen Drain Clog

Drain clogs are common, but preventable. The best way is to simply be cautious about the things dumped into them. Things such as grease, hair, coffee grinds, and soapy crust can easily clog up the drain. But, people think that with water, they can simply flow through and out of the entire pipe.

It is not true. With cooking grease, collect in a can and dump it in the waste bin. Do the same with coffee grounds or mix them with the rest of the mulch in the garden. Get one of those filters to protect the drain’s opening and collect all of those things listed crust that could fall in. Most of these filters can be placed in easily.

Cleaning Your Drain On A Regular Basis

Cleaning the drain regularly helps a lot. To keep kitchen drains running freely people can do these various tests. First, the can let hot water flow in the sink as they keep foods’ oils going through the drain and not build up along the pipes that can become smudge inside and bottleneck the entire system of water coming through.

Next, put in some baking soda and run it through with hot water. Baking soda can clean up things and it’s also good in sucking in foul smells so the drain doesn’t smell like a garbage dumpster.

Using Vinegar To Clear Your Drains

A third option is to decant a cup of vinegar down the drain for 30 minutes and have it settle in before washing it with hot water. Like baking soda, vinegar is great for cleaning because of its ingredients that help get rid of buildup of crud in the pipes.

If the kitchen drain is consistently clogged and it can’t be replaced, there are advanced ways of keeping it clear. Get a half-cup of the following: salt, vinegar, and baking soda, plus four pints of very hot water. Overnight, to let it seep in to break up the clogging, put the salt/baking soda mix in the drain, wait one minute, and then pour the vinegar, wait another minute, and finally run it all through with the water.

With sinks that have garbage disposal systems inside, fill it with ice cubes frozen with vinegar and some water, and turn it on. Another reason for the vinegar is that it’s an acid not too strong, but strong enough to scrape the grease and crud off the walls with the frozen water.

Vinegar is truly not just for salads, but it’s also not a happy smelling liquid. Those ice cubes can be laced with lemon juice to offset the heavy scent. That way the drain/garbage disposal will have a god citrus scent when finished. If not thrilled with vinegar, then go with lye, a key ingredient added in cleaners. Lye can thaw out the soap crud and loosen the hair trapped inside. Pour some down the drain, run it through with a bit of warm water, and give it a few hours before using it again. Use a small amount of lye because it is a strong agent that can do more harm than good.

Unclog the kitchen drain with prevention and advanced, but simple cleaning techniques. However, I’d stick with the prevention side.

Do You Need Drain Cleaning Service?

Contact us today at 623-499-9794 to schedule an appointment for your home.

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3 Tips To Save Electricity

3 Tips To Save Electricity

Nowadays it has become important to pinch every penny we can when it comes to paying our bills. In the age of technology, we find that our electricity bill often comes out as one of the heaviest bills. Some of the best ways to save on your electricity bill include the following 3 little known tips!

1. Upkeeping Your Appliances

The quality of your appliances often degrades after each use which can make them less efficient. The less efficient they are, the more electricity you need to use to get the job done like restarting your dryer in order to dry your laundry load. Therefore, maintaining your appliance is a must-do to help you save on your electricity. You can maintain your appliances by:

  • Cleaning them weekly or after each use (cleaning the lint trap, clearing out the dishwasher, or cleaning the AC)
  • Make sure appliances with bulbs have the right watts and bulbs
  • Be sure you are using the appliance correctly (loading dishing into the dishwasher correctly or using the right microwave setting)
  • Putting them in the right location (a thermostat can be effected by direct sunlight and drafts)

The better maintained your appliances are, the better they will perform. You will be surprised how much electricity you can save by keeping your appliances in tip-top shape!

2. Using Cold Water

Speaking of appliances, studies have shown that you can save up to $63 a year when using washing laundry with cold water. The hot water you use to wash clothes AND shower adds up at the end of every month. You can cut the amount of hot water you use by only using cold water for your laundry. Not only will you find that using cold water to wash laundry helps you save on your electricity bill but it also has other benefits. Cold water is known to:

  • Not mistreat your clothes’ fabrics
  • Maintain elasticity of clothes with elastic bands
  • Prevent the growth of bacteria on your clothes and in your washer
  • Maintains the shape of your clothes

Overall, there are plenty of good reasons to switch to using cold water when doing laundry. The biggest and best reason is that using cold water can help you save on your electricity bill.

3. Unplugging Standy

Another little-known tip for saving on your electricity bill, is to unplug electronics that are on standby. When an electronic is on standby, it means that the appliance is plugged into a socket, is put on standby mode and is not in use. Putting the electronic on standby can save more money than having them plugged in but not as much than if they are unplugged. The best solution is to plug a safe amount of electronics into a power strip or a smart outlet.

By using a power strip or smart outlet, you can just switch it on when you are using one of the electronics and just switch it off when you’re not using one. You will find that you can save up to 10% on your electricity bill using this method.

Call Christian Brothers A/C, Plumbing & Electrical at (623) 499-9794.


5 Steps to Basic Fireplace Maintenance

5 Steps to Basic Fireplace Maintenance

The late fall and winter seasons are the perfect time to gather family and friends inside to enjoy the warmth of your hearth- and the warmth of each other’s company. In addition to a few extra steps, like storing firewood outside and trimming tree branches away from your chimney, these tips are highly recommended to make sure that your fireplace is safe and fun for your family to enjoy.

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1 – Clean out the Firebox Regularly

As a safety measure (but also as a way of keeping the area around the fireplace cleaner) make sure that you remove the ashes from inside the firebox on a regular basis (weekly is ideal). If you use your fireplace often, you’ll need to clean it often as well (once the ash reaches three inches deep or so).

2 – Chimney Cap

Even though a chimney cap is a tiny installation, many homeowners wonder if it is necessary. Rest assured, for a small piece of equipment; a chimney cap does a huge job, preventing loads of potential damage.

Animals will sense warmth in the winter coming from your chimney, making it an excellent nesting spot. These nests can cause dangerous build-up below when fires are burning. It’s also a real barrier for flying embers, which could easily spark low-lying branches.

3 – Keep your Hearth Clean

With soot and other debris a constant presence with your fireplace, it is important to maintain the hearth, to keep it looking good and to prevent damage. Clean the soot off with a wet cloth. After the surface has dried, shine it up with a small amount of lemon oil. It makes it glow and seals it as well.

4 – Clean the Chimney

Every year, call in the chimney sweep to do a full cleaning of your chimney, and it’s components to make sure everything is in working order. Build-up and residue can cause smoke and be hazardous. The chimney sweep will make sure the damper and flue are not damaged as well. They also check for leaks and cracks in the structure. Even if you don’t use your chimney often, get it cleaned and checked.

5 – Crack the Window

Don’t let a smoky fire deter you from using your fireplace. A simple solution is that there is insufficient air in the room itself. Letting a little air in from outside can create the cross-ventilation needed to reduce the smoke. The extra oxygen can help the fire burn brightly as well.

Christian Brothers Plumbing in Glendale, AZ always have time to share home maintenance tips with our clients. Give us a call today at 623-499-9794 to learn more.


National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week

National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week

During November, many families in the United States begin to prepare for Thanksgiving Day by buying special foods to cook for their tasty holiday recipes. However, there are numerous hungry and homeless individuals who need help during this time of year. Our company understands that our community’s organizations are struggling to provide the basic necessities to the homeless, and here are a few ways for you to provide assistance to those who are in need during National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, which takes place November 12-20th.

1: Donating Toiletries, Household Items and Clothing

We should try to help out the homeless by cleaning out our closets and getting rid of household items, clothing and toiletries we don’t need. Some of the things that a homeless individual might need include:

  • Winter coat
  • Blankets
  • Bath soap
  • Deodorant
  • Shampoo
  • Toothpaste
  • Socks

Besides giving away used clothing or household goods, we can buy low-cost toiletries for the homeless to make their lives better and to help them find work.

2: Volunteer at a Nearby Homeless Shelter

The temperature often starts to drop in November, and many of the homeless individuals in your area need a place to stay. The homeless shelters require additional volunteers at this time of year to provide vital services. By offering a few hours of help to the homeless this month, you will be making a difference.

3: Help a Food Bank or Soup Kitchen

Many families during this time of year must decide whether they are going to spend their income on heating a home or buying food (assuming they cannot afford both). In order to survive, they will visit a food bank to receive canned or packaged foods to prepare at home. Alternatively, they might need to go to a soup kitchen to have a nutritious hot meal. Luckily, most soup kitchens and food banks will accept fresh vegetables, so you can donate produce and canned goods to help the hungry or homeless.

4: Donate Food to a Thanksgiving Food Drive

Local organizations and churches in the Arizona area organize a Thanksgiving Day food drive to ensure people will have enough ingredients to make a nice dinner. You could help out by donating these types of foods:

  • Cans of fruit and vegetables
  • Boxes of mashed potatoes or stuffing
  • Loaves of fresh bread
  • Bags of potatoes
  • Cans of chicken or turkey
  • Boxes of noodles

For additional suggestions when helping the hungry or homeless in Glendale, AZ, contact Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical at 623-499-9794.


What Kept Houses Cool Before Air Conditioning?

What Kept Houses Cool Before Air Conditioning?

Many of us take air conditioning for granted. It’s easy to forget that before central air systems were commonplace throughout America, many people went their entire lives without enjoying the cool, refreshing indoor air provided by good air conditioning units.

Humans have been trying to keep cool for as long as we have recorded history. Even though air conditioning and central air are relatively new additions to the modern residential dwelling, we’ve been finding innovative and exciting ways to manage the temperature for hundreds of years.

Keep reading to see our favorite ways that generations before us kept cool without the benefits of AC:

Wraparound Porch
Stone Walls
Cross Ventilation
High Ceiling

Wraparound Porches

Most houses built after WWII tended to have large, covered front porches or wraparound porches attached to them. While these porches are used largely for decoration these days, decades ago they were critical for keeping cool and getting a good night’s sleep.

It wasn’t uncommon for individuals and even entire families to migrate out onto the porches at night to sleep and enjoy the (slightly) cooler evening air, rather than be trapped in a musty, humid house.

Higher Ceilings

Some modern homes have high ceilings which are purely for aesthetic purposes, but there’s a good reason that many “character” homes and apartment complexes have towering ceilings and windows: air circulation. We all know that hot air rises, so the higher the ceiling, the more top up the heat can go, keeping the floor a little cooler. Not just that, but taller ceilings allowed for taller windows; tall, narrow windows improve air flow and move more air through a room than the short, stout windows we see in most homes today.

Stone Walls

If you could afford it, building tall houses with thick walls made of stone and brick were commonplace to insulate homes and help keep them cool during the warm months. Many older homes have walls which are between 12-24 inches thick, and by building them with stone and bricks they were able to absorb heat during the day and release the heat at night once the evening set in. This also helps explain why some brick homes are so expensive to purchase: the added insulation (bricks) helps keep energy costs low.

Cross Ventilation

Cross-ventilation is the practice of placing inlets and outlets (usually strategically placed windows and doors) to optimize the flow of air through a building. For example, the famous “shotgun houses” in New Orleans weren’t just built tall and narrow to avoid the high property taxes; the strategically-placed windows allowed for optimal airflow and helped homeowners beat the Southern heat.

Stay comfortable with the help of qualified professionals and call 623-499-9794 to reach Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical in Glendale, AZ for fast, efficient solutions.


Put a stop to bullying with Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical.

Put a stop to bullying with Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical.

Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical believes it’s important our communities understand how bullying affects all of us. Even though most of the consequences of fear and violence are associated with children, anyone can experience the negative impact of being bullied. Next,  Victims have been known to suffer from anxiety, depression, and loss of interest in their day to day activities. Afterward, victims have seen negative changes in their health. All things considered, let’s all come together to put a stop to bullying!

put a stop to bullying

Bullying has to be something we all want to get rid of. During the month of October, we hope everyone who reads these words will join Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical in the fight against bullying by participating in the following events.

National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month

  • Run, Walk, or Roll Against Bullying – October 6th
  • Freedom from Workplace Bullying – October 14th-20th
  • Freedom from Workplace Bullying hopes to get adults to get past the potential shame that keeps them silent and get help. Let’s inspire witnesses to step forward and make the workplace safe from bullying for everyone.
  • Unity Day – October 10th
  • Stop Bullying Bystanders – October 14th-20th
  • Bystanders can play key roles in preventing and stopping bullying. This event is to remind witnesses not to ignore bullying or other signs of violence.
  • National Stop Bullying Day – October 12th. This event encourages everyone to spread the word about the dangers of bullying through #NationalStopBullyingDay. 

Above all, bullying can hurt people for their entire lives, even long after the victims have left their bullies. We need the generous spirit of people ready to support the cause and make a difference. For this reason, we’re asking every parent, student, business, school and politician to decide what they can do to help. In addition, attend an event, educate your children, make sure local schools are doing the same, stand up for someone, report the bullying, or donate money or your time to an anti-bullying organization.

Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical hopes you join us to stop bullying. If you ever need a plumber within the Glendale, AZ area, be sure to call Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical today at (623) 499-9794. 


HVAC Mistakes made in the fall Here’s How to Avoid Them

HVAC Mistakes made in the fall, how to avoid them

Fall is a busy time for many homeowners, and as the season’s change , it’s important to maintain your heating and cooling system . The upcoming list contains the top HVAC mistakes that are made, during this transition from warm to cooler weather. 

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Are you doing all that you can to keep your HVAC system running this fall season correctly? Keep reading to find out if you’re making these seven mistakes:

  1. HVAC Mistakes #1 Neglecting to Change Your Filter

It’s easy to forget to change your filter because they are unseen elements of your home’s HVAC system. However, just because they’re “out of sight” doesn’t mean that they should be “out of mind,” so take the time to change your vents and to begin checking your filters on a monthly basis.

  1. Changing Your Settings Every Day

It may make sense to change your temperature settings to accommodate the slightest change in temperature, but it’s better to maintain a small range of temperature shifts over an extended period, rather than to change them every day.

Daily changes put extra pressure on your system and make it harder for it to regulate the proper indoor temperature, so put on a sweater instead of changing the thermostat every day.

  1. Using Worn-Out Systems

Old HVAC units work less efficiently than newer models do. If you’ve been pushing an old unit to keep running instead of investing in a newer model, then you may be in for a surprise this season.

Instead of waiting until you need emergency services, ask a heating and cooling expert to help you choose a new unit and ensure that it is correctly installed before the season ends.

  1. Neglecting Regular Maintenance

It’s important to invest in annual inspections of your HVAC system to keep your costs low and ensure that everything is working as it should.

Not only can regular maintenance help identify issues and compromises in your system, which may be costing you money, but maintenance can extend the lifetime of your system and help you stay comfortable..

  1. Never Touching Your Settings

While it’s not good practice to change your settings every day, it’s also important to be mindful of not neglecting your HVAC system’s settings entirely. We recommend that your system should sit at around 72 or 73 degrees Fahrenheit and that you change it slightly as the season’s change to accommodate accordingly.

  1. Turning Off Your Heater

It may seem like turning off your heater will save you money, but since your system has to work overtime to get back up to their maximum output level, it can damage your system to turn it on and off, and then on again.

  1. Forgetting About Your Vents

Keeping your vents clean and in proper working order can go a long way towards keeping your air clean, and your system working efficiently.

When your vents are clogged your HVAC system has to work overtime to circulate air as efficiently as it once did, which means that you’ll find yourself paying extra to have dirty and unclean air inefficiently distributed throughout your home. Instead, take the time to invest in your vents and ensure that they are working properly this season.

Staying comfortable indoors is easy when you work with a team of qualified experts. Give Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical in Glendale, AZ a call today at 623-499-9794 for assistance.


National Baby Safety Month

National Baby Safety Month

BabySafetyMonthAbout Baby Safety Month

Each September, the Juvenile Product Manufacturers Association (JPMA) sponsors National Baby Safety Month. The focus of this year’s National Baby Safety Month will be educating parents on the importance of registering their baby products and paying attention to recall notices.

Most people pay little attention to the product registration cards they get with the things they purchase.

The majority of individuals only throw these registration cards away with a shrug of the shoulders. That is a dangerous attitude when it comes to baby products. If parents do not register the products they buy for their children, they may not hear about future recall notices until it is too late.

Some of these recall notices are issued because products are found to be dangerous or even deadly. To protect their children, parents need to take a few minutes to fill out and send in the product registration cards for all the baby items that come with them.

Three Hidden Dangers for Babies

As well as registering their baby products, parents also have a responsibility to baby-proof their homes. While most parents do this, they are not always aware of the hidden dangers that may lurk in their homes. Keep an eye out for these three hidden dangers for babies in the home.

1. The Crib

Parents tend to think of cribs as the safest place their babies can be, but they can, in fact, be deadly. To reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), never put any pillows, blankets or soft toys in the crib with your baby. Also, parents need to make sure to put their babies to sleep on their backs.

2. The Diaper-Changing Table

baby safetyBabies can very quickly roll off the table if one is distracted while changing their diapers. For this reason, don’t ever leave your child unattended on the diaper-changing table for even a moment.

3. Tripping

If you trip while carrying your baby in your arms, the results could be tragic. Make sure that you remove rugs, stray cords and other tripping hazards from your home to prevent this disastrous situation from occurring.

Child Passenger Safety Week

Car crashes are one of the leading causes of death for children. To prevent these tragic deaths be informed about child passenger safety laws. September is also the time of year when Child Passenger Safety Week occurs. This year, Child Passenger Safety Week will be from September 18-24.

On September 24, law enforcement officers nationwide will be checking that parents are using the correct safety devices to transport their children on National Seat Check Saturday. Make sure that you always use car seats correctly for your kids to keep them safe.

If you ever need a plumber within the Glendale, AZ area, be sure to call Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical today at (623) 499-9794.


Eco-Efficient ways to cool your home

Eco-Efficient ways to cool your home

If you live without an AC, you’ll know how important it is to do whatever you can to keep your home as cool as possible during the summer. Even if you don’t have an AC to keep you cool, there are several things you can do as a homeowner to keep your home feeling fresh and cool on the hottest of days. Follow these tips for eco-efficient ways to cool your home:

Eco-efficient alternatives for your home

Tip # 1: Close the Curtains or Blinds

Everyone loves a bright, sunny room. But in the summer, as the sun bears down on our windows, it creates a greenhouse effect in our homes, creating extra heat that is really difficult to get rid of. By closing your blinds, you are keeping your home cooler by removing the heat from the sun. The Department of Energy estimates that about 45 percent heat gain is removed by closing your blinds.

That number would be higher if it weren’t for the little slats in the blinds that expose sunlight. For full coverage, use blinds and curtains, which have an estimated heat reduction of about 65 percent. When choosing blinds and curtains to put up in your home, we recommend a lighter fabric or color. Light colors are better at reflecting heat while dark colors absorb it.

Tip # 2: Keep the Door Shut

One of the biggest reasons your home gets hot in the summer is from constantly opening and closing the door. When you want to conserve cool air in your home, be strategic about opening and closing the door. Combine trips and let your kids know they have to be careful about opening and closing the door unless it’s completely necessary.

eco-efficient-alternatives-for-your-home
Home-Costs-for-Cooling
Home-Cooling-Costs

Tip # 3: Open Your Windows for a Night Breeze

When the sun sets, the temperature drops. This is the perfect time to open your windows and blow all the humidity out of your home. Creating a cross breeze in your house will cool you down at night and prepare your home for the next day’s conservation efforts.

If you open your windows at night, make sure you wake up early the next day to close the windows and draw the curtains and blinds to get the most cooling power throughout the day.

For more information on eco-efficient cooling options or the installation and replacement of AC systems, call (623) 499-9794 and speak with the experts at Christian Brothers Plumbing, Air Conditioning, and Electrical in Glendale, AZ today.