Happy Earth Day.

As the premier green plumber here in Colorado, we take sustainability seriously. Which is why we’ve been celebrating Earth Day every year since we opened our doors.

This year Earth Day is focusing in on Green Cities. In our modern times, more than have of the earth’s population lives in urban environment, and with that comes its own unique set of issues. Water, climate, energy and more is all impacted by the way we live.

We’re in this together, which means every one of us has to do our part.

Earth Day

Globally, buildings are responsible for one third of the greenhouse gas emissions. Here in the US, the impact is even greater with nearly 40 percent of all carbon dioxide emissions coming from both our commercial and our residential buildings. Why? Most buildings rely on dirty energy sources for power, and they aren’t using energy efficiently.

As a whole, we need to improve energy and water efficiency, as well as reduce waste and pollution. Not a small task, but one we can each take part in.

As a plumber, our number one concern is water sustainability. How can you be more efficient with the water you do use?

This Earth Day, start at the top.

The biggest water usage comes from your water heater. How old is it? How much water do you use? First, install a top of the line energy efficient water heater to help you save overall. Then consider a recirculating system that will ensure instant hot water from wherever and whenever you choose. Both will make a huge change in your overall water consumption.

Next, make sure you are using low flow fixtures throughout your home. Low flow faucets in your bathroom and kitchen will help you use as little water as possible during your daily routines. Low flow toilets will reduce your water consumption by hundreds or even thousands of gallons every year.

Then put your focus outside. How can you reduce the amount of water you use to keep your landscaping alive? Can you reduce the amount of grass in your yard in exchange for native plants? Also focus in on installing water saving drip and sprayers in your sprinkler system.

The more you do now, the more Earth friendly we’ll all be in the long run. Happy Earth Day!

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

What does the term “green” have to do with plumbing? How is a green plumber different from a more traditional plumber? Isn’t it all the same thing?

Yes, we understand that the concept of being a green plumber can be a little confusing. So to help you understand the differences, we thought we would provide you with just a few things we do differently in order to consider ourselves green plumbers.How Is A Green Plumber Different From A Traditional Plumber

Probably the most basic concept to start with is water. Plumbing is all about water. It’s the control of water throughout your home to allow you to do all the things you do every day.

A green plumber realizes that water is a finite resource, and that conserving water and building an energy efficient relationship with the way we approach living will not only help us save, but will improve our overall environment as well. Some facts for you to consider:

  • An average family of four will use approximately 115,000 to 175,000 gallons of water each year
  • One person flushes the toilet at home 2.5 times per day
  • By replacing a 5 gallon toilet with a low flow toilet, you can reduce water usage by 70 percent
  • For a family of four, low flow toilets could save 13, 392 gallons per year

While the toilet is a great place to start reducing water inside your home, its not the only place. There are many ways to reduce water usage.

  • Choosing ENERGY STAR approved appliances that ensure low water usage
  • Installing low flow shower heads that reduce the amount of water distributed per second
  • Replace all faucets with low flow sources
  • Use a recirculation system that allows you to have hot water on demand
  • Look for leaks throughout your home to reduce the amount of water being used

Many different options are available when you’re looking to conserve throughout your home. And while conserving does help the environment, it helps you too. Who doesn’t want to reduce their average water and electric bills, right?

In many cases green plumbing choices can be learned from reading online or even by doing things through trial and error. That’s how some plumbing companies approach it.

Not us. We realize the benefits of being a green plumber, and have certification and hundreds of hours of training in order to say we’re green plumbers – one of the first right here in the state of Colorado.

So if hiring a green plumber is important to you, hire one of the premier companies right here in Denver – Quality 1st Plumbing. We’re here to offer you the advice you need to help keep your home green.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

It is common knowledge that lead and children do not mix. When a child is exposed to high levels of lead over an extended period of time, it can have detrimental effects on his or her health.

So, when we think about the dangers of lead exposure, we usually think about children and paint chips. However, prolonged exposure to high levels of lead can also affect the health of adults. And its not just paint chips that can cause a problem.

Why Decreasing Your Lead Exposure Matters

As of 2014, new laws have now impacted your plumbing as well. In some cases, old pipes contain lead, and when water runs through them, lead particles can be filtered into the water supply. As of 2014, plumbers can no longer use lead based plumbing supplies in their services, and new lead-free fittings must be used with all service work to protect you, the consumer.

Here are some reasons why you should limit lead exposure, no matter how old you are:

  • Lead exposure can lead to a variety of health problems, including:  fatigue, nausea, hearing loss, seizures, constipation, miscarriages, still-births, fertility issues, anemia, and hypertension.
  • Lead accumulates in the bones, which means it can be released back into your blood stream long after the exposure to lead ends.
  • You can bring lead home with you after exposure – lead dust and particles can adhere to your shoes and clothing, traveling with you wherever you go and exposing others to its harmful effects.

What should you do if you think you may be at risk for lead-associated health problems? The first thing you should do is limit your continued exposure. Then, consult your doctor for testing of your lead levels. Depending on the results, you may require treatment. If you are uncertain exactly where the lead is coming from, testing can be performed on your home and in other locations to determine where the lead is coming from.

To avoid problems stemming from lead exposure, the best thing you can do is be aware of your surroundings and follow all safety procedures when working in areas with elevated lead levels. If you do have to work in areas with elevated lead levels, remember to wash your hands regularly, shower and change into clean clothes before going home, and have your lead levels tested on a regular schedule.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

Do you live in an older home? While your home environment is safe under normal conditions, have you ever thought about when the unexpected happens?

What if a pipe breaks and creates expensive damage to your wall boards?

While the homeowner inside of you probably says “fix the pipe and repair the damage”, you would be only partially right.

What It Means To Be A Lead Safe Certified FirmThat’s the starting point. But if you’re older home was built using lead within the building materials, damage can expose the problem.

Meaning only a plumber that is certified through a lead safe certification program will know what to do and fix your home the correct way.

Across the country, contractors and other firms seek lead safe certification either through the EPA or through their state’s associated agencies. To display the label, they must have completed the training. And if you don’t see the label, well, you simply won’t know if they have the qualifications to make sure your home is safe after any repair or renovation.

Being lead safe certified is more than just having basic knowledge about lead. When a firm is lead safe certified, it means they are trained in lead safe practices. This means that not only will all the workers be ensured of their safety pertaining to lead, it also means that customers can rest assured that the final results will be safe, too.

For example, a building contractor that is lead safe certified has provided all of his/her employees with the necessary training required to ensure lead safe work practices. When that contractor is hired to remodel a home for a family, the workers will perform the renovation utilizing only lead safe practices. When the family moves back into the home, they will know that their home meets the requirements for a lead safe home.

Lead is a naturally occurring element found in all parts of our environment. Lead and lead compounds have been used in many ways throughout our homes, from painting to ceramics, to gasoline, batteries and plumbing materials, to cosmetics and more.

While we are all exposed to lead in some ways, extensive lead exposure is what leads to problems, especially in children and at-risk adults, including pregnant women.

To assure your safety, make sure you deal with only lead safe certified firms that have the training and the credentials behind them.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

Is your plumbing green? And no, we don’t mean green in color. We’re talking about environmentally safe and smart plumbing!

Making your plumbing system and features safe for the environment offers benefits for the world we live in as well your pocketbook and home. Not only will you be going green for a good cause, you’ll be saving money in the long run.

 How to Make Your Plumbing More Environmentally FriendlyHere are some improvements that you can make to your plumbing system friendlier to the environment:

Efficient water heater- Increasing the efficiency of your water heater doesn’t mean installing a tankless water heater. Even a traditional water heater today is more efficient then one you purchased a few short years ago. If hot water on demand is your goal, talk to us about a recirculating water pump – it can help cut down the amount of gallons going down the drain before you hop in the shower.

High-efficiency toilets- If you have an old, big tank toilet, consider replacing it with a smaller tank toilet. This will save a great deal of water and money.

Pipe insulation- Since water heaters are usually located in the basement or other remote location, it takes longer for the hot water to reach the appliances in your home. The further the water needs to travel, the more heat is lost with the pipes that carry the water. Pipe insulation can help make your hot water use more reliable, and it’s easy to install.

Efficient home appliances- Updating your plumbing system with efficient appliances will make the most use of the least amount of water. And this includes all appliances that make use of water in your home, since they are part of your system.

Low-flow shower head and faucet aerators- There are great models available that save water by limiting water flow. They will also save you money on your water bill, too.

Repair leaky faucets- Did you know that one leaky faucet can waste more than 20 gallons of water every day? Repairing those leaky faucets will save lots of money in the long run.

You might feel the urge to rush and complete all of these green plumbing improvement projects, but just take one task at a time. With a little work, your plumbing system can be completely green in no time at all!

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

When people talk about new appliances and energy efficiency, washers and dryers, dishwashers and refrigerators get all the glory. They are in ads every week, and they have an easy time being placed in the limelight. They are front and center in our homes, so they have the opportunity to be put on display.

New Standards For Water HeatersYet one appliance controls them all and ends up taking a back seat when it comes to wanting to replace it – its your water heater. Without it, there would be no hot water to keep your dishes clean or temperate water for your clothing.

Water heaters haven’t changed much over the years. But that’s about to change.

The truth is that hot water heaters can contribute to the energy-efficiency of your home. And the U.S. Department of Energy has proposed new energy conservation standards for hot water heaters in residential homes. They go into effect in April 2015. So what does this mean and how does it affect your home?

What do the new standards entail?

Under the new 2015 standard, storage water heaters with capacities of 55 gallons or bigger will face stricter efficiency requirements than heaters of 50 gallons or less. Under the current standard, a typical 75 gallon gas storage water heater can have an energy factor as low as 53%. Under the 2015 standard, the minimum energy factor for a 75 gallon gas storage tank water heater will be 74%. This will be achieved by using condensing technology.

How do the standards affect large water heaters?

Basically, larger water heaters will be required to have an energy factor of at least 2.057, which is twice the efficiency of a high-efficiency electric storage heater. The new standard could only be met with heat-pump water heaters, instead of the classic electric resistance water heaters. Tankless gas water heaters are to have an energy factor of 82% or greater under the 2015 standards, a number which corresponds to the current Energy Star standard.

Larger appliances also have a natural gas option. This is more efficient that electricity because the energy source doesn’t have to turned into electricity and transported. More than half of water heaters are already using natural gas for power.

As a homeowner, you will not have to change out your water heater by this date. Instead, when you replace it in the future, your water heater choices will have to meet or surpass these standards, giving you greater benefit for energy efficiency within your home.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

Many of us try to incorporate green living into our daily lives. While a composter is ideal for waste, some people simply don’t have access to one where they live. However, they have a garbage disposal, and some wonder if throwing their food scraps down the drain is better than throwing them away.

Which Is Greener: Throwing Scraps Away or Sending Them Down The Garbage Disposal?

So which is greener and better for the environment?
In order to answer this question, it’s essential to look at the pros and cons of garbage disposals and their impact on the landfill or water supply. While some consider the garbage disposal a green machine that lessens the amount of garbage sent to landfills, others claim that dumping waste into the water system has repercussions.

Garbage disposal pros

Garbage disposals can handle most food scraps and leftovers. However, it can’t handle grease and fats because they can block the pipes. The scraps that are put into the disposal will eventually end up in a wastewater plant. They will go through a treatment that scrapes out the largest solid matter, and it is either condensed into fertilizer, landfilled, or digested by microorganisms.

Compared to disposals, the garbage offers less efficiency when it comes to energy. It takes a lot to transport trash from curb to landfill. The trash’s decomposition will likely result in damaging greenhouse gas emissions.

Garbage disposal cons

A negative aspect of garbage disposals involve a eutrophic impact that is than three times larger than sending it to the landfill. They also use water to do their job. The liquid waste that is pumped back into local water streams affects chemical composition and aquatic life. Additionally, you should consider the extraction of the metal needed to make the disposal.

The bottom line

Compost your garbage whenever possible. However, if you don’t have access to a composter, use the garbage disposal. Make sure that there is not a water shortage in your area, and avoid putting grease or fat down the drain.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

What You Should Know About DroughtsToo hot, too cold, too wet, too dry; it seems we can never be happy with the weather we have. Unfortunately, sometimes our weather dissatisfaction arises out of serious weather issues. Hot, dry weather over an extended period of time can lead to drought. And drought can have some very serious and far reaching effects. Here are a few things you should know about drought.

1. There are actually 4 types of drought – Not all droughts are created equal. Different droughts lead to different issues.

  • A Meteorological drought is brought on by a lack of precipitation.
  • An Agricultural drought, as the name would suggest, is defined by the amount of moisture in the soil where crops are grown.
  • A Hydrological drought is created by low waters in lakes and reservoirs.
  • A Socioeconomic drought is created when low water levels affect people (i.e. limited water for drinking, watering, daily usage, etc.)

2. The four types of drought are not mutually exclusive. For example, the most common drought, Meteorological drought, typically leads to one (or more) of the other drought types.

3. Not all water is created equal. Did you know that over 99 percent of the world’s water supply is unusable? Only about .003 percent of the world’s water supply is fresh water. This water supply is further limited by pollution.

4. Certain areas are drought prone. Different regions of the world; including Colorado, New York, Brazil, Australia are more prone to drought.

5. Drought is a costly environmental hazard. Drought effects can be far reaching and extremely costly. Drought can affect the cost and supply of food for both humans and livestock as a result of a limited supply. The increased cost of food for livestock can cause an increased cost in meat. Unfortunately, these costs can continue to accumulate and exacerbate the problem.

6. Drought can even affect vacation plans. Drought ridden areas experience a significant drop in tourism revenue. So, not only will drought affect wallets through expenses (food) but also through income (state tourism revenue).

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

Things You Didn’t Know A Green Plumber Could DoThere are many things in life that we pay little attention to until it becomes an emergency. Plumbing is one of those things that as long as it works, why think about it? There’s so much going on in our busy days, that as long as the water is warm when we want it, and all appliances are working the way they should, why focus on it?

When it comes to your home, plumbing is an essential piece of the puzzle. And in today’s society, something that is taking even more precedence in the industry is green plumbing. Is there a difference? You bet. And here are a few things you probably never knew your green plumber could do.

Start with an energy audit

Whether you have a brand new home or a home that’s lived through generations, there will be many ways you can improve upon the systems that run your home. Right now you have a starting point for the energy and water usage that goes through your home every day. With easy fixes, you can change the amount of water you use with each task, or the amount of energy needed to run your home. But if you aren’t aware of what changes you can make, its impossible to take a first step. An energy audit can be your starting point to efficiency. A green plumber can walk through your home and test output in a variety of ways. Then they can provide you with a full report of where you stand today, what changes you can make over time, and how much impact you’ll have after the changes are completed.

Educate you on water heaters

If you’ve had a water heater in place for a while now, one of the first thoughts to increase efficiency might go to replacing it with something newer and more high tech. Tankless water heaters tend to be the buzzword in “green” talk. Yet they aren’t always the best choice. Did you know you still won’t have access to instant hot water? Did you know that if your house is of a certain size, you may need two or more to satisfy your needs? Yes, there is a lot of misconceptions about water heaters and energy efficiency. Only a green plumber can provide you with the right guidance to make your final selections the right way.

Decrease your water usage

Drought and water shortage are two concepts that are ever-appearant in the Colorado landscape. We all have witnessed first hand what lack of water can do – forest fires, decreasing water tables, dying trees and landscapes. And with more people moving in all the time, those trends can only continue to increase. What can you do? There are many ways you can help – every little bit helps. We can help you install everything from low flow toilets and dual flush toilets, to water savings appliances and faucets.

As green plumbers, we have specific training and certification to understand the importance of water and energy savings, and what it takes to make your home as efficient as possible. Just ask.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

Celebrating Earth Day 2013 and Colorado Plumbing

Happy Earth Day.

What are you doing to celebrate Earth Day in 2013 – The Face Of Climate Change?

The very first Earth Day was 43 years ago, April 22, 1970. On that day, a US Senator from Wisconsin decided he had to do something after witnessing the ravages of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. He was inspired by the student anti-war movement, and realized if he could infuse the same energy into public consciousness about air and water pollution, people would begin taking action to help Mother Earth.

On that day, 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks and auditoriums to demonstrate for a health, sustainable environment. This one act led to the creation of the US Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts.

The rest, as they say, is history. And we’ve been celebrating Earth Day ever since.

Here at Quality 1st Plumbing, we take Earth Day seriously. As the premier green plumbing company here in Colorado, we know we have to protect our most valuable resources. Read more

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website

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