Home & Lifestyle

Why You Should Drink Less Bottled Water

We all use bottled water at one time or another to satisfy our need for “clean and fresh”.

But legions of people across the land overdo it, thus creating an ecological menace.  Consider these very real and alarming statistics:

For those occasions where bottled water is your only clean water solution, please recycle.  But for just about every other clean water need, a home water filtration system is the answer.  These are the two types we recommend and install most often:

  • Plastic bottles take 700 years to begin composting
  • 90% of the cost of bottled water is due to the bottle itself
  • 80% of plastic bottles are not recycled
  • 38 million plastic bottles go to the dump per year in America from bottled water (not including soda)
  • 24 million gallons of oil are needed to produce a billion plastic bottles
  • Point-of-use (also called “under sink”) water filters remove lead and other impurities as you draw water from your faucet.  The water tank and filter is installed under your sink, and we have different size tanks to accommodate your average daily consumption.
  • Whole-house water filters provide clean, purified water from every water source in your home, including your washing machine, dishwasher, faucets, shower, and all the rest.  This is the solution for people who want clean, soft, and filtered water – no substitutions, please!

More Benefits of Filtered Water.

  • Water filters greatly reduce the risk of rectal cancer, colon cancer, and bladder cancer by removing chlorine and chlorine byproducts from drinking water.
  • Water filters provide the healthiest water for children’s developing immune systems.
  • Water filters provide the last line of defense between the body and the over 2,100 known toxins that may be present in drinking water.

And, of course, you’ll be saving money on all the bottled water you won’t need to buy any longer.  To learn more about your home water filtration options, contact Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air today.

8 Summertime Life Hacks for Your Added Comfort & Convenience.

Okay, so maybe the entire universe is NOT already clued in on the whole life hack thing, and what exactly that means.  So, straight from the top of page 1 of Google, let’s call a life hack “a strategy or technique adopted in order to manage one’s time and daily activities in a more efficient way.”

The dog days of summer are officially in full swing, and everyone is looking for ways to beat the summer heat while having fun. So whether you’re a titan of thriftiness, or simply like a good tip that makes your life a little easier, here are 8 summertime life hacks that are sure to keep you cool, comfortable, and even help you save a few bucks.


  1. Catch that Drip – There’s nothing like enjoying a cool treat on a hot summer day. But melting popsicles sure can make things messy. Next time, position a cupcake liner at the base of a popsicle to catch the dripping juice so your fingers don’t have to.
  1. A Fruity Container – Wow your guests – or just your kids – with a cool beverage container. Simply slice off the top of a watermelon, hollow it out, and insert a spigot into the side. Then fill with your favorite drink and replace the lid.
  1. Clever Disguise – Wondering how to keep your valuables safe and secure while at the beach or pool? Use an empty and cleaned out sun block bottle! Just cut a hole at the bottom of the bottle large enough for your credit cards, cash, or even phone to fit through and toss it into your tote or duffel bag.
  1. Itch Control – Nothing ruins a fun-filled day outside faster than pesky mosquito bites. But you can calm the itching and reduce swelling with something you already have at home – tooth paste. Just dab a little tooth paste onto the bite and get back outdoors.
  1. Soothe the Burn – Spent a little too much time in the sun? Ease the pain of sunburn with cooling aloe. Pour aloe vera juice into an ice cube tray and freeze for an always-ready cooling solution.
  1. Condiment Caddy – Adhere contact paper to the sides of a cardboard six-pack container and fill the compartments with condiments, napkins, utensils, or anything else you need for your next summer barbecue.
  1. Flies-Be-Gone – Tired of having your outdoor dining experience ruined by pesky flies? Next time, place bowls of lemon halves topped with cloves on the table to ensure a fly-free meal.
  1. We All Scream for Ice Cream – It doesn’t take much for your favorite flavor to fall victim to freezer burn. But you can prevent those ice crystals from forming and make your sweet treat easier to scoop by placing the container in a zip-top freezer bag.

The Benefits of a Gas Clothes Dryer

blogClothes dryers pretty just much go about their business, semi-quietly drying your clothes one load at a time.

Or so we would like you to think.

Because clothes dryers, you see, can be major energy guzzlers, sometimes consuming as much energy as new energy efficient refrigerators, washers, and dishwashers combined.

In fact, Americans spend about $9 billion and 60 billion kilowatt hours per year to dry our clothes.  But those numbers can come way, way down.

The biggest savings will come by switching from an electric to a gas clothes dryer – these cost up to 75% less to operate than electric dryers.  We know it’s not what you’re used to, as electric dryers are still the far more popular choice.   But as our society becomes increasingly energy conscious, gas dryers are slowly starting to gain on their electric counterparts.

In fact, you can now purchase a heat pump clothes dryer and save even more on your energy bills.  But your clothes will take a lot longer to dry, so there’s one technological innovation you want to pass on for the time being.

As for now, and assuming you’re in the market for a new or replacement dryer, you’d do well to give gas a serious look. And don’t worry if your laundry room isn’t already connected to your home’s natural or propane gas supply.  That’s where we come in.  As licensed plumbers and gas fitters, Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air can safely and correctly install a gas connection for your new dryer and, while we’re at it, any other new gas appliances you might be considering.  Contact us for more information or to schedule service today.


Home Money-Saving Tips from Boden.

blogDo you go through cycles where you spend money one day like it didn’t matter and, not too much further down the long, you start wondering how and where you can cut corners?  Most people have a lifetime pass on that particular merry-go-round.

Of course, the less time you spend riding it the less you’ll have to wonder where the money meant.  And while there are a million and one ways to cut your living expenses, here are five that are easy to adopt and really work.

We hope you find them useful:

  1. While they help your laundry feel soft and smell great, single use dryer sheets are not only wasteful but filled with potentially harmful chemicals. Instead, why not make your own. All you are some old towels and/or tee shirts.  Make sure they’re clean and you always have enough on hand for a week’s worth of laundry.  Take a couple of the cut up “sheets” to start, dip them in a mixture of distilled white vinegar and your favorite essential oil, store them in an air tight container, and pop one on the dryer as needed.
  1. Get a few more washes out of your bar soap by collecting the scraps, melting them over the stove, and pouring the mixture into bar molds. Let them dry and voila, brand new bars of soap!
  1. Stop buying costly flower vases and storage containers. Instead, thoroughly wash and dry mason jars, coffee cans, and other food storage containers, and use them for storing tool bits, pencils, crayons, and art brushes, or as a shabby-chic home for a bright bouquet of flowers.
  1. Why turn on the hose or fill the watering can to water your garden? Install a rain barrel below the eaves of your roof to collect run-off rain water. Just be sure to check that rain water collection is permitted in your area.
  1. You might be tempted to surround your central air conditioning unit with lush foliage to make it a little more visually appealing. However, such vegetation can reduce airflow and make your unit run less efficiently. Trim back shrubbery and remove weeds around your unit to reduce electrical consumption and lower your home cooling bill.

You know what else you can do to keep your AC costs under control.  Contact Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air today and request our annual preventative maintenance service.  By having this service performed once a year, you can look forward to fewer repairs, longer system lifespan, and lower utility costs.


The Do’s and Don’ts of Deck Maintenance.

Whether it’s a small extension of your home, or more like a sprawling oasis, a deck is a wonderful addition to any home. And yet just like all the rooms and mechanicals, it requires routine maintenance to ensure that it remains a safe and enjoyable place to just be.

Simply follow these Do’s and Don’ts for deck maintenance and you’re sure to get more years of enjoyment and greater pleasure for your trouble:

blogDO thoroughly clean your deck once a year. When the temps hit about 60-70 degrees and there is no rain in the forecast, use a roller or sprayer to apply a deck cleaning solution. While power washers are great way to wash of the gunk, they can also gouge the wood. Instead, use a garden hose on a hard-stream setting.

DO sand your deck before applying a sealant. When your deck is completely dry – which can take up to 48 hours – lightly sand the surface using a pole sander with 80-grit sandpaper. Then apply sealant to protect from warping and cracking. If you want a longer lasting seal, use a clear sealant.

DO inspect and clean your deck throughout the year. Regularly sweep puddles, leaves, branches, and debris off your deck to prevent scratches, mold and mildew growth, and water damage. Periodically, inspect the wood for cracks and soft spots, plus loose planks, railings, and nails.

DON’T use chlorine bleach on your deck.  Yes, chlorine bleach is one heck of a cleaner, but it can damage the wood and strip it of its natural sheen. Even oxygen bleach, which is a safer alternative, is still not recommended for certain wood species. Look for and use only a wood-approved deck cleaner.

DON’T mistake paint for sealant. If you want to change the color of your deck, first start by removing any paint with a sander or stripper. Things such as paint, varnish, or lacquer leave a film instead of penetrating the wood like a sealant. This can cause it to crack and peel in no time.

DON’T ignore pressure-treated wood. While it might resist insect infestation and rot, it does not resist sun and water damage. Clean and seal decking made with pressure treated planks just as you would with natural wood, but choose products made specifically for it.

DON’T use area rugs made from natural fibers. An outdoor area rug is a great way to protect your deck from scrapes and scratches while adding a little style, but natural fibers absorb moisture and promote mold and mildew. Opt for rugs made of recycled plastics instead.

Want to enjoy the whole outdoor experience even more?  Contact Boden Plumbing today and ask us about adding an outdoor gas connection and piping so you never have to worry about running out of charcoal or propane again.  That way, you can grill whatever you want, whenever you want.

Save Time with these House Cleaning Shortcuts.

Spring has officially sprung and that means it’s time to throw open those windows, let in some fresh air, and jump right into spring cleaning to awaken your home from months of hibernation. Still, do you really want to spend a beautiful spring weekend knee deep in dusting and laundry?  Exactly.

So to help ensure that you get your home sparkling clean in as little time as possible, here are 7 time saving tips and tricks.

  1. blogSteam up your microwave. Cleaning dried on food splatters from the microwave can be a time-consuming task, but a little steam can make it all go simpler and faster. Simply boil a cup of water in the microwave to create a steam bath that will soften the dried-on gunk.
  2. Vacuum window treatments. Give your curtains and drapes a quick cleaning – in between washing or taking them to the dry cleaner – by vacuuming them with the upholstery attachment. You can do the same for your blinds and pleated shades.
  1. Use rubber gloves to ball up pet hair. Getting Fido to stay off the couch may be a losing battle, but cleaning up pet hair doesn’t have to be. Just put on a pair of rubber gloves and wipe your hands over the area. The pet hair will ball right up for fast and easy disposal.
  1. Dust walls and ceilings with microfiber mop. Eliminate the need for a step ladder by investing in a microfiber mop with a long handle.
  1. Use a pillowcase to dust ceiling fans. Keep the dust under control by sliding a pillow case over each blade. When you pull it back, you’ll end up dusting the blade and sending the dust inside the pillow case instead of onto your floor.
  1. Clean your toilet with denture tablets. You read that right. Just drop a few denture tablets into the toilet bowl and walk away. Come back in about 5 minutes and flush. You’ll get a deep anti-bacterial clean that requires no effort at all.
  1. Clean your dishwasher with a pantry staple. Even your dishwasher needs a good cleaning every once in a while to remove food scraps and soap residue, etc. Place a dishwasher-safe cup of white vinegaron the top rack of your dishwasher.  Run it through a full cycle on the hottest water setting possible and voila! You’ll have a sparkling clean dishwasher without harsh chemicals.

Spring is also the perfect time to have your AC system professionally cleaned and inspected so you can count on its full cooperation once the warm weather comes to stay.  And that’s the fastest spring cleaning chore of all, because all it requires is a call or email to Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air.  We look forward getting your AC season to a rousing and worry-free start.



How to Get Rid of Mold in Your Bathroom.

blogIf you’ve noticed some unattractive spots appearing and spreading on your bathroom ceiling or grout, you have a problem that is more than just aesthetic in nature. More importantly, the sooner you take steps to remove and prevent mold in your bathroom, the better.

As you may know, mold grows quickly and can be very destructive to your home and harmful to your health.  Mold, for example, can cause severe allergy problems that can lead to asthma.

What’s the first step in getting mold out of your bathroom once and for all? Finding out how and why it got there in the first place. Let’s have a look at the most common causes:

Mold loves moisture and warmth. If your bathroom is not well ventilated, then whenever you use the shower it creates an excess of moisture – ideal conditions for mold to form and grow. Does your bathroom have an exhaust fan? Is it working properly?

Is there an attic space above the bathroom? If so, perhaps that’s where the mold originated and now has spread downward to your bathroom. A small leak in the roof could be the cause, as can can a loose connection in the wiring of your ceiling fan.

Once you’ve found and corrected the source of the moisture problem, you can treat the mold without fear of it returning. First, treat the moldy spots with a bleach-and-water solution. You can put the mixture in a spray bottle or use a sponge to apply it without oversaturating.

After treating the spots, it’s a good idea to repaint the ceiling to prevent mold from returning. You’ll need to use a primer first that has anti-mold properties, and then repaint using a specially formulated bath paint, the kind that will create an effective and lasting barrier.

At Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air, we’re experienced and ready to assist you in preventing and treating mold growth in your bathroom or anywhere else in your home. Contact us today and let us know how we can help.

Must Do’s for January

Have you ever seen the movie Cabaret featuring Liza Minelli in her prime?

There’s a line in the title song that includes: “What good is sitting alone in your room”, and so on. Well, whatever room that might be, that song lyric describes what most of us do a whole lot more of during the winter months, i.e., sit around, just waiting for warmer weather to return.

Instead, how about mixing in some home project work – not just for the sake of it, but to make you feel about your home by accomplishing some real live tasks that need to get done sooner or later anyway? What kinds of projects? Well, that depends on you, your lifestyle, and your home, but here are a few helpful suggestions:

Female Hands Framing Custom Kitchen Design Drawing and Photo Combination.Get a jump start on your home remodeling project. Major or minor, let’s say you’re planning to upgrade your kitchen in the spring, and hiring one or more contractors to do the work for you. These are the very same people, for the most part, who just itching for the phone to ring so they can start filling in their spring calendars. That means that if you wait too long, you could wind up either with your second, third, or fourth choice, etc., or having to wait longer for your first choice to become available. So plan now, and remodel later.

Schedule a home energy audit. Even with fuel prices way down during this winter of 2015 – 2016, there are no doubt areas inside your home where energy is being wasted. A professionally done energy audit can pinpoint those areas, and then it’s up to you how to prioritize making the necessary improvements for your more energy efficient home.

Lose the clutter. From old magazines and piled up mail to shirts you haven’t worn in years and paint cans you haven’t been able to part with, what better time than the winter to tackle one room or area at a time, and get rid of all that stuff you no longer need, want, or could possibly ever find a use for.

Refresh dirty, dingy tile. If your eye is longer drawn to your kitchen or bathroom floor tiles because the dirty grout is all you can see, then why not make the time to scrub it clean. It won’t take much or effort or time before it looks like you just installed brand new flooring.

Catalog your old photos. If you’re at least 35 years old, then chances are not all of your photos are on a flash drive or inside your cell phone. Some people still have prints, and in many cases more than they know what to do with. Now’s the time to go through them and decide on a better way to organize and store your photos. That way, you can enjoy them any time you feel the urge.

As you scout your home looking for projects not yet completed, don’t forget to consider your home heating system. As in, did you neglect to have it professionally cleaned and inspected this past fall? If so, why not contact Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air today to schedule service. When the job is done, you’ll benefit from improved performance, greater comfort, lower heating costs, and a reduced likelihood of repairs. What’s not to like about that?!

Try a New Thanksgiving Tradition or Two!

Traditions play a crucial role in our lives. They strengthen bonds, give us a sense of belonging, and connect one generation to another. Unfortunately, as relatives move away, start their own families, and generations get older, it’s easy for some time-honored traditions to fall by the wayside. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t still create and uphold meaningful traditions with your own family this Thanksgiving, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Here are five simple ideas for starting new Thanksgiving traditions with your family that you are sure to cherish for years to come.


  1. Write it down. Display a journal in your home and as guests start to trickle in for Thanksgiving dinner, ask each one to take jot down what they are thankful for this year. You can then read each entry during or after dinner. You’ll have a treasured family keepsake that you can look back at year after year.
  1. Smile for the camera. Once everyone has arrived, gather together for a family photo. Imagine looking through the pictures 5, 10, or 20 years from now and seeing how your family has grown and changed over the years.
  1. Bring your game face. Take a break from watching the football game and play a holiday themed game instead, like Pictionary or Pin the Feathers on the Turkey.
  1. Pay it forward. This year, why not share what you have with those in need. Share your time by volunteering at a local homeless shelter, or collect non-perishable food items and drop them off as a family to a food pantry. You might even consider sponsoring a family and supplying them with everything they need to have a healthy and delicious Thanksgiving dinner.
  1. Get cooking. It’s no secret that food brings families together. And what better way to preserve those tried and true recipes than by creating a family cookbook? Imagine passing down Aunt Ann’s crab dip recipe or grandma’s cheesecake recipe from generation to generation.

Here’s another Thanksgiving tradition, not quite as much fun or rewarding as those already mentioned: clogged kitchen sink or garbage disposal drains. The problem, in fact, is so widespread that the day after Thanksgiving is now known as “Black Friday” by plumbers both near and far. So if too much turkey fat and other “no no” foods end up down your drain or inside the garbage disposal, contact Boden Plumbing for fast and effective relief from what could be a rather messy problem.



How to Get Rid of Mold in Your Bathroom

blogThe single best way to get rid of mold in your bathroom is not to let it form in the first place, even though very often that’s easier said than done. Still, if you don’t at least try, then it’s like placing a welcome matt out for this very unhealthy substance.

So let’s start with 4 effective ways to keep mold out of your bathroom:

  1. When showering, make sure the bathroom is well-ventilated. If have a window, open it just a crack and, for even better ventilation, open the door a crack at the same time. An exhaust fan works well for the same purpose, even if you turn it on only after turning off the shower water. Also, when leaving the bathroom after a shower, keep the door open so whatever moisture is left in the air can escape.
  1. If you have a shower curtain, stretch it out completely after exiting the tub or shower enclosure. Otherwise, mold can and will form in the cracks.
  1. If, on the other hand, you have sliding glass doors, wipe them down after your shower to get rid of the moisture. And then periodically clean your sliders to destroy lingering mold bacteria.
  1. Keep a sharp lookout for bathroom leaks, especially in hard to spot places like behind your toilet or under your sink, especially if you have a vanity. A little moisture left undetected is all it takes to start a colony of mold.

Already have mold and want to know how best to get rid of it. Here at Boden, we recommend the following cleaning measures:

  • Mix bleach with warm water and spray it directly on the mold spots or onto a sponge and then wipe it away. Bleach is a pretty potent substance so, to avoid staining, don’t use too much.
  • If you don’t have any bleach in the house, here are some other products that also are effective against mold: Borax; vinegar; a mixture of vinegar, baking soda, and water; and ammonia.
  • Once you’re done applying your mold cleaner, thoroughly rinse and wipe away after each application.
  • If mold has made its way onto your bathroom ceiling, you need to repaint it once the mold is completely gone to prevent a re-occurrence.

Let’s face it: some homes are just more prone to others, no matter how careful you are to prevent and/or clean up after mold first appears. Then again, there are probably one or more things we can do to assist you. That includes clearing any clogged drains, repairing a faucet or pipe leak, and repairing or replacing your leaking toilet. Boden Plumbing, Heating & Air. Contact us today long-term relief against mold in your bathroom or anywhere else in your home. Just like always, we’re here to help.