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Residential and Commercial plumbers and plumbing contractors available in Orland Park, Tinley Park, Oak Lawn, Palos Heights, Midlothian, Oak Forest, Homer Glen, Mokena, Frankfort, and the surrounding Chicago South Suburbs. 24 Hour Emergency plumbers.

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Kevin Szabo Jr Plumbing Blog

Kevin Szabo Jr Plumbing is Tinley Park, Orland Park, Oak Forest, Midlothian, Orland Hill, Homer Glen, Mokena, Frankfort, Crestwood, Palos Heights, Oak Lawn, local plumber. Read our blog for advice, tips, a good laugh, and basic home improvement.

**We are moving our old blog to our new and improved website. Too see all our posts visit kevinszabojrplumbing.blogspot.com

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Six Houseplants That Are Great For Bathrooms

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Six Houseplants That Are Great for Bathrooms

You might think your bathrooms aren't good candidates to grow indoor plants seeing as they typically don't have much in the way of natural lighting and experience dramatic shifts in humidity and temperature, but did you know there are still plants that can easily thrive in these conditions with a minimum of maintenance?

Even small indoor plants continuously add fresh oxygen to your space and absorb carbon dioxide. They also tirelessly work to purify the air by removing toxins like formaldehyde, benzene, xylene and others. Some plants even become more adept at eliminating indoor pollutants with practice.

Just about any common indoor plant offers benefits both aesthetically and to the overall health and wellness of your household. But some are easier than others to maintain, especially in the tricky environmental factors that go part and parcel with a bathroom.

But it's worth the extra effort to make sure that the enclosed, somewhat claustrophobic spaces bathrooms inevitably represent are decorated with the invigorating and lively presence of living species. And as you read on, you'll come to find that with the right selections it really isn't much extra effort at all.

Did you know that formaldehyde is a carcinogen that is found in virtually every household where synthetic materials can be found? Even if you carefully choose what household products you bring into your kitchen and bathroom, it turns out formaldehyde is outgassed even by many building materials, which means that it is almost impossible to avoid. Fortunately, plants can minimize the impact of formaldehyde by filtering it out of the air. Other plants can reduce odors by working as nature’s air fresheners.

Let’s take a look at some of the plants that make the best additions to your bathroom:

Cast Iron Plant (Aspidistra elatior)

The cast Iron plant is an excellent choice for most bathrooms. This plant thrives in a low light setting and can tolerate a stingy watering schedule. It can do well with both higher and lower temperature settings. The plant should be kept in an area with indirect sunlight.

The plant comes in both small (18 inches) and full size (2-3 feet high) varieties. Leaves may vary from dark green to yellow striped or dotted.

To care for your Cast Iron Plant, water it thoroughly when the soil becomes dry.

The Aspidistra does well in the humid conditions

The plant is also a great air purifier that effectively removes formaldehyde, benzene and trichloroethylene from the air.

Ferns

Ferns do very well in bathrooms because they like humid environments. Different types of Ferns such as Bird Nest, Boston Fern and Staghorn Ferns do well in low light settings.

Ferns need regular watering and misting. However, with too much water they will develop yellow or droopy fronds - a sign of root rot.

Ferns can tolerate significant temperature fluctuations characteristic of most bathrooms. However, if a bathroom is kept cold to the point that humidity is reduced, the fern may begin to struggle. Try misting them more frequently or move them to a location where the air isn’t as dry.

Note: some ferns and fern-like species can be mildly toxic. If you have pesty pets who are likely to munch on whatever they come across (or babies who do the same… you know who you are) then you may want to do some research on the species you have or look for an alternative.

Dragon plant (Dracaena)

Dracaena comes in more than forty varieties. It has long spear-like leaves which range in width from a few millimeters to a couple of inches wide. The available colors range from solid green to greenish-maroon and variegated. The leaves of the plant emerge from the stem.

The plant works as an excellent air purifier for the bathroom. It grows well in artificial light and indirect light. Direct sunlight should be avoided.

Dracaena is a drought-resistant plant and doesn’t need a lot of watering. Water it only when the soil feels dry and then pour lukewarm water generously until water trickles through the holes in the pot. Empty the drainage receiver pan after about an hour and never allow the pot to stand in water. The plant thrives in rich soil with plenty of organic material.

Snake plant (Sansevieria)

Sansevieria also known as “Snake plant” or “Mother-in-Law’s tongue” is very suitable for bathrooms. It is one of the most low-maintenance plants you can grow.

The plant filters out formaldehyde from the air which is commonly found in cleaning materials and cosmetics.

The plant would grow well in light levels ranging from low to bright indirect sunlight. It will also thrive well under fluorescent light.

Water the plant only when the soil is almost completely dried out, which should be ever two to six weeks depending upon the temperature, light and humidity of your home. The plant does well at most humidity levels. Choose a soil which drains freely, and use a terracotta pot to make sure that water doesn’t accumulate in the pot.

Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)

The white flowers of the Peace Lily make a great complement to the décor of most bathrooms. The plant does well in low light conditions and is easy to take care of.

Don’t let the Peace Lily’s delicate appearance fool you: it is a hard working plant when it comes to air purification. The plant also reduces the mold spore levels in bathrooms.

Peace Lily does well in low light during summer and spring but in order to grow well, it will need exposure to indirect sunlight during the rest of the year.

Peace lily requires consistently moist soil, but like other low-maintenance plants, it doesn't like to sit in standing water. Water it when the top inch of the soil is dry, and keep watering until the overflow of water starts from pot’s drainage holes. Return the pot to its regular place once drainage has stopped.

English Ivy (Hedera helix)

Ivy is one of the easiest indoor plants to keep. The plant enjoys warm and humid conditions which makes it perfect for greening up the bathroom. Ivy can give a very good display if the aerial roots of the plant are trained to climb a moss stick or trellis.

Ivies grow well in the medium light, but will also thrive in bright light. They are generally less tolerant of low light conditions than the other plants listed here.

Ivies prefer drier soil, so let the soil dry out before watering it again.

The plant can effectively remove traces of airborne mold spores - making it a perfect addition to bathrooms, the kitchen or anywhere else mold or mildew can loom.

Guest Contributor, Ryan from Fast Partitions

Items You Never Want to Wash Down Your Drain

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Items You Never Want to Wash Down Your Drain

Whether you are washing dishes, your hands or cleaning something up around the house, the sink seems to be a common way that people dispose of all sorts of dirt and grime and while many things are safe for disposal down a drain, it’s important to take precautions to prevent items you never want to wash down your drain from being disposed of improperly.

If you treat your drains like the garbage dump, you will soon begin to have problems with clogs, foul odors and even worse problems that can be expensive to repair. (Source: AnytimePlumbing.net)  Be sure to check this list to make sure you aren’t washing potential dangers down your drain.

Eggshells: Whether you have a garbage disposal or not, egg shells should never be dumped down the drain. When they combine with other waste, they can form major clogs that can be difficult to remove.

Produce Stickers: Those tiny stickers you find on bananas and apples are coated with adhesive glue and are often made of plastic that can get stuck in pipes and cause major clogs.

Grease: Grease is one of the most common substances that people haphazardly pour down the drain. This is one of the biggest mistakes that a person can make with their drain and should be avoided. Grease includes melted fats from bacon, sausage, poultry, hamburger and other meats and once it goes down the drain it can harden and cause sewer blockage.

Coffee Grounds: Coffee grounds, especially when combined with grease can be a horrible combination down the drain. Coffee grounds alone can cause serious drain blockage, so it is best to avoid washing them down the sink drain.

Oils: Whether it is salad oil, cooking oil or even mayonnaise, never pour oils down the drain.

Fat: Shortening, butter, chicken or turkey skin, milk and other fats should not be poured down the drain. Milk is not often considered a fat by people, but the fats in the milk can cause harm to your drains.

Condoms: Condoms are flushed down the toilet or even washed down a sink drain more often than people would believe. They should never, under any circumstance, be flushed down a drain. These items do not dissolve, and they will stay inside your drain or in the sewer for years. They will also cause clogs. The best place for you to dispose of a condom is in the garbage can.

Paper Towels: Due to their thickness, paper towels need to be tossed into the trash can rather than flushed down the commode where they have been known to cause clogs.

Flushable Wipes: Yes, they can be flushed, but take precautions because even flushable wipes have been known to clog a toilet. They don’t disintegrate like toilet paper does and they can wreak havoc on a sewer system.

Motor Oil and Other Fluids: If it goes in the car, it should never be poured down a drain. Motor oil, anti-freeze, transmission fluid and other car fluids can destroy a drain system, so keep them away. Contact your local landfill to find out where motor oil and other fluids can be disposed of in your city.

Paint: Let’s face it, the sink is a comfortable location to clean paint brushes and paint pans after you paint a picture, a wall or a piece of furniture. If you are painting your bathroom or other room in your home, the sink is also the last place you should ever clean your paint brushes or pans. Oil paint needs to be disposed of at a hazardous waste facility while latex paint needs to be disposed of away from drains or water sources. Check with your local city management office to find out what your local ordinances for paint disposal are.

Medication: Many cities today have return days where residents can go drop off unused medications. Many pharmacies will also take unused medications for disposal. Medications are unfortunately dumped down the drain where they eventually land in rivers and streams where they can contaminate water, kill fish and wildlife and even cause illness in humans. When you need to dispose of old medications, never flush them down the toilet. Instead, contact your local pharmacy or police department to find out where you can safely dispose of the medication.

Cleaning Products: Unless you are using 100% natural, safe for the environment cleaning products, steer clear of dumping them down the drain as they can be dangerous to water systems.

It’s a good idea to clean your drains with a mixture of distilled white vinegar and hot water once a week to help keep them clean and to remove buildup. Keeping your pipes clean by not dumping the wrong items down them and by maintaining them with a weekly cleaning regimen is a good way to help avoid an expensive plumbing repair and keep things running smoothly.

Guest Contributor, Tom Masters

Tips on Choosing the Right Color for Your Bedroom

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Tips on Choosing the Right Color for Your Bedroom

How do you paint a room that bookends your day? Bedroom is more than sum of its parts, its function is something sacred – to offer you a moment of respite from daily woes and comfort you when you feel the most vulnerable. In fact, it is a place where you should be able to feel the most vulnerable without any reserve. This is why it is so important to choose the right colors for this area – because you will wake up to them every day and they will be the last thing you see each night. With that in mind, here are the tips on choosing the right color for your bedroom.

It needs to be calming

Calming color scheme is the top priority and the tip you’ll get from basically anyone if you ask them about bedroom aesthetics. Now, the idea of calmness can vary from person to person, but it would be safe to say that you should definitely go for serene composition. In other words – no distinct contrasts. Just make the lines and tones blend into each other and complement each other’s level of warmth. The question of whether you should go for lighter and darker tones is mostly dependent on you, but darker ones are usually recommended for the bedroom.

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Dark and calming nuances

Dark colors are actually a good go-to option if you want to create a truly calming and comfortable bedroom. However, these dark colors should not be too harsh or bold. Go for some nice pastels like charcoal, olive, deep violet, navy or silver tones. The best variant is to either go for gentle blue-steely tones with a pinch of milky gray if you want a cold scheme, or olive-celery sort of green that can be a good basis for a room that aims for organic and warm tones. Line your room with furniture that has white skeletons in order to add some crispy visuals and a sense of space to your bedroom.

It needs to be done right

After you have created a hypothetical arrangement of colors for your bedroom – preferably a collage you can actually show to professionals – you should seek out high quality painting services that can bring your vision to life. The last thing you need is a messy environment which cannot be fixed, so avoid doing this all by yourself. Lines that are drawn sloppily can also impact the levels of your anxiety in the long run. You might not notice it at first, but it is one of those things that creeps into one’s mind slowly and insidiously.

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If your bedroom is small…

Still, if your room is already cozy when it comes to space, the darker colors (which are there to create a comfortable and cozy atmosphere) might not be the best solution. If your bedroom is small, you should consider lighter tones and start with a white basis. According to the type of bedroom you want to create (warm or cold) you can choose a white with a bluish hue or the one with a warm creamy dash. The brighter tones will add a sense of airiness and brightness to your bedroom, almost without fault, so it is a risk-free and solid solution.

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The window conundrum

The windows in your bedroom are a tricky element – you’d want big windows for bright mornings and sunny afternoons, but you’ll also want to minimize the presence of light if you want to sleep in. In that case, you will get the best of all worlds if you installed bigger windows but also added some solid shutters which are easy to manage. You will also want to install windows which can be easily opened and don’t let any bulky furniture block them. You will want to have an option to let the fresh air flow through your bedroom whenever you need it.

If you followed at least a few of these tips on choosing the right color for your bedroom, you should end up looking at something truly aesthetically pleasing – a place that, as far as palette of colors go, suits your sensibilities and makes you feel content. Even though people have different ideas of comfort, they all share this deeply-rooted yearning to have a safe place where they can rest, and with just the right combination of colors on your hands, you too can have a bedroom of your dreams.

Guest Contributor, Diana Smith

How To Clean and Maintain Your Kitchen Sink Drain

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If you like your things to run and work smoothly, you need to maintain them. Your kitchen sink drain needs maintenance. It’s very easy to maintain your kitchen sink drain. 

1. 1/2 cup of baking soda

2. 1/2 cup of vinegar

3. Lemon juice

Let the baking soda and vinegar sit for 30 minutes, then add the lemon juice. Give it a few minutes, then rinse. Follow these steps once a month, and you should have a very happy kitchen sink drain.  

Watch the video below to see how easy it is to maintain your kitchen sink drain.