Everything you need to know about your Alturas Home's plumbing, fixtures, garbage disposal, and more.
Please be advised that a water-saving regulation that went into effect in 1993, which prohibits the manufacture of toilets that use more than 1.6 gallons of water per flush. In the search for a balance among comfort, convenience, and sensible use of natural resources, the government conducted several studies. The 1.6-gallon toilet turned out to be the size that overall consistently saves water.
As a result of implementing this standard, flushing twice is occasionally necessary to completely empty the toilet bowl. Even though you flush twice on occasion, rest assured that overall you are saving water and we have complied with the law. Similarly, flow restrictors are manufactured into most faucets and all shower heads and cannot be removed.
Even though your plumbing lines have been flushed to remove dirt and foreign matter, small amounts of minerals may enter the line. Aerators on the faucets strain much of this from your water. Minerals caught in these aerators may cause the faucets to drip because washers wear more rapidly when they encounter foreign matter. See also Dripping Faucet.
Follow manufacturer’s directions for cleaning fixtures. Avoid abrasive cleaners, as they remove the shiny finish and leave behind a porous surface that is difficult to keep clean. Clean plumbing fixtures with a soft sponge and soapy water (a non abrasive cleaner or a liquid detergent is usually recommended by manufacturers). Then polish the fixtures with a dry cloth to prevent water spots. Care for brass fixtures with a good-quality brass cleaner, available at most hardware stores.
The main causes of toilet clogs are domestic items such as disposable diapers, excessive amounts of toilet paper, sanitary supplies, Q-tips, baby wipes, flushable wipes, dental floss, and children’s toys. Clogs are only covered for the first 30 days after closing.
Improper garbage disposal use also causes many plumbing clogs. Always use plenty of cold water when running the disposal. This recommendation also applies to grease; supplied with a steady flow of cold water, the grease congeals and is cut up by the blades. If you use hot water, the grease remains a liquid, then cools and solidifies in the sewer line. Allow the water to run 10 to 15 seconds after shutting off the disposal.
You can repair a dripping faucet by shutting off the water at the valve directly under the sink, then removing the faucet stem, changing the washer, and reinstalling the faucet stem. The shower head is repaired the same way. Replace the washer with another of the same type and size. (Please note that some manufacturers do not use rubber washers.) You can minimize the frequency of this repair by remembering not to turn faucets off with excessive
Provided the home is heated at a normal level, pipes should not freeze at temperatures above 0°F. Set the heat at 65° F if you are away during winter months. Keep garage doors closed to protect plumbing lines running through this area from freezing temperatures.
If a major plumbing leak occurs, the first step is to turn off the supply of water to the area involved. This may mean shutting off the water to the entire home. Then contact the appropriate contractor.
Occasional cleaning of the aerators on your faucets (we suggest doing so every three to four
months) will allow proper flow of water. The water department controls the overall water pressure.
Marble or Manufactured Marble Plumbing Fixtures
Marble and manufactured marble will not chip as readily as porcelain enamel but can be damaged by a sharp blow. Avoid abrasive cleaners or razor blades on manufactured marble;
both damage the surface. Always mix hot and cold water at manufactured marble sinks; running only hot water can damage the sink.
Outside faucets are freeze-proof, but for this feature to be effective, you must remove all hoses during cold weather, even if the faucet is in your garage. If a hose is left attached, the water that remains in the hose can freeze and expand back into the pipe, causing a break in the line. Repair of a broken line that feeds an exterior faucet is a maintenance item. Note that Alturas Homes does not warrant hose bibs against freezing.
You can damage porcelain enamel with a sharp blow from a heavy object or by scratching. Do not stand in the bathtub wearing shoes unless you have placed a protective layer of newspaper over the bottom of the tub. If you splatter paint onto the porcelain enamel surfaces during redecorating, wipe it up immediately. If a spot dries before you notice it, use a recommended solvent.
To stop running water, check the shut-off float in the tank. You will most likely find it has lifted too high in the tank, preventing the valve from shutting off completely. In this case, gently bend the float rod down until it stops the water at the correct level. The float should be free and not rub the side of the tank or any other parts. Also check the chain on the flush handle. If it is too tight, it will prevent the rubber stopper at the bottom of the tank from sealing, resulting in running water.
Your main water shut-off is located near your water heater. You use this shut-off for major water emergencies such as a water line break. Each toilet has a shut- off on the water line under the tank. Hot and cold shut-offs for each sink are on the water lines underneath the sink.
Clean stainless-steel sinks with soap and water to preserve their luster. Avoid abrasive cleaners; these will damage the finish. An occasional cleaning with a good stainless-steel cleaner will enhance the finish.
Avoid exposing the toilet to blows from sharp or heavy objects, which can cause chipping or cracking. Avoid abnormal pressures against the sides of the tank.
Alturas Homes Limited Warranty Guidelines
During the New Home Orientation, we will confirm that all plumbing fixtures are in acceptable condition and that all faucets and drains operate freely. Alturas Homes will correct clogged drains that occur during the first 30 days after closing. If a household item is removed from a clogged drain during this time, we will bill you for the drain service. After the first 30 days, you are responsible for correcting clogged drains.
Alturas Homes will correct any fixture damage noted on the New Home Orientation list. Repairing chips, scratches, or other surface damage noted after the New Home Orientation is your responsibility.
Alturas Homes will repair leaks at exterior faucets noted on the orientation list. After orientation, repair of a broken line to an exterior faucet is your responsibility.
Provided the home is heated at a normal level, pipes should not freeze. Set heat at 65° F if you are away during winter months. Keep garage doors closed to protect plumbing lines that run through this area.
Alturas Homes will repair leaks in the plumbing system. If a plumbing leak caused by a warranted item results in drywall or floor covering damage, Alturas Homes will repair or replace items that were part of the home as originally purchased. We do not adjust for secondary damages (e.g., damage to wallpaper, drapes, personal belongings, etc.). Insurance should cover these items.
Changes in temperature or the flow of the water itself will cause some noise in the pipes. This is normal and requires no repair. New high efficiency washing machines often create the water hammering noise. This can be controlled by installing a water hammer arrestor at the appliance.
Alturas Homes will correct construction conditions that disrupt the supply of water to your home. Water pressure to the home is controlled by the local municipality and cannot be adjusted by Alturas Homes. If you notice a water discoloration or taste variances contact your local water utility.
IF YOU NOTICE A LEAK IN A NATURAL GAS LINE:
- Get everyone out of the house. Turn the gas off at the meter. Call the gas company to report the leakage.
- Do not turn the electricity on and do not use any electrical appliances or tools.
IF A WATER MAIN BREAKS OR A MAJOR PLUMBING LEAK OCCURS:
- Turn off the main water valve. You were shown the location at your home orientation. Call Customer Care for assistance if necessary.
IF YOU SHOULD NOTICE A LEAK UNDER A SINK OR TOILET:
- Turn off the water supply valves located under or behind the units. You were shown the locations at the home orientation. Arrange for service.
IF A TOILET BECOMES CLOGGED:
- Turn off the water supply valve behind the unit. Refer to the maintenance section for more information.
IF YOU NOTICE A LEAK IN THE SHOWER OR TUB:
- Turn off the water supply valve at the fixture. Arrange for service. Do not use the tub or shower until the problem can be addressed by the service department.
IF THERE IS A LEAK AT THE HOT WATER HEATER:
- Use the shutoff valve on top of the hot water heater to turn off the water. Turn off the gas valve and the pilot light. Arrange for service.
IF YOU NOTICE DARK SPOTS OR WATER SPOTS ON YOUR WALLS OR CEILING:
- This may be a sign of a water leak. Call the Customer Care department for assistance.
IF THE WATER TEMPERATURE IS NOT HOT:
- Adjust the temperature at the hot water heater by following the manufacturer’s instructions on the tank. Avoid setting the temperature on the highest setting, especially if you have small children.