2410, 2016

Work Desk vs Toilet – Which Has More Germs?

October 24th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments


Did you know that the desktop is one of the germiest places in the office and that 20-30% of women’s handbags have fecal bacteria underneath?

Or that the average work station is jam packed with more germs per square inch than the office toilet, a recent study in University of Arizona revealed.

Research to determine germ hot zones — areas that are prime habitats for viruses causing colds and flu — found typical office phones and desktops, including computer keyboards and mice, have up to 25,000 bacteria per square inch compared to a mere 49 bacteria per square inch on workplace toilet seats.

Office phones, desktops, computer keyboards and mouse, have up to 25,000 bacteria per square inch compared to a mere 49 bacteria per square inch on toilet seats.

A recent survey by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention exposed some disturbing hand hygiene trends. It was discovered that one in three adults don’t wash their hands after using the toilet. One in four don’t wash after changing a baby’s diaper. Fewer than half wash after handling pets or cleaning up after them, only one in three wash after sneezing or coughing and hardly anyone washes after handling money, a major carrier of disease.

With more than 80% of infections carried through the environment, work desks become more susceptible to transmission of germs.

University of Arizona microbiologist, Dr. Charles Gerba says that coughing and sneezing can leave behind “a minefield of viruses” that can live on a surface for up to three days.

According to Health Canada, about 25 per cent of us are felled by the flu each season and 26 per cent get flu shots.

Here are 3 tips to keep your work area as clean as your toilet:

1. Avoid eating in your work desk. If you want to continue your work, make sure to clean

your desk afterwards. Always wipe before and after you eat, to clean any spills right away.

2. Wash your hands often and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Hand sanitizers

are an excellent addition to hand washing.

3. Wet the hands with warm water, apply soap, lather for 20 seconds, rinse, towel dry and turn

the tap off with the towel.

Always remember, Stay home if you’re sick, avoid those who are ill, see a healthcare

provider when needed, get regular physical activity and maintain healthy nutrition. Manage

your stress, get enough sleep and wash your hands.

604, 2016

How To Prevent Major Flooding In Your Home

April 6th, 2016|Burst Pipe, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Darryl Simon, owner of PlumberAssist was recently featured in a Channel 7 segment on burst flexible hoses, the damage they cause and how to prevent flooding from happening in your home or at work.

Darryl has been documenting the effects these braided hoses have when burst.  PlumberAssist has attended to hundreds of burst flexible hoses and prevented thousands more from failing and causing flooding to homes.

These flexible braided hoses connect taps and toilets to water and fail over time.  When they fail and burst, they cause an immense amount of water damage and can cause tens of thousands of dollars damage to your home or business.

This can be easily preventable by visually checking these hoses on a regular basis.

Look out for any brown spots.  This means that the steel braided outer is rusting and may fail shortly.

Look for any kinks or twists in the hose.  This can also lead to the hoses failing and bursting.

Change all old hoses for new hoses that have a 15 year warranty.

3001, 2016

Blocked Drain Surrey Hills

January 30th, 2016|Blocked Drains, Uncategorized|0 Comments

DrainageEquipmentWe attended to an emergency blocked drain in Surrey Hills on Friday night and found the shower and basin to be filling up with water and gurgling when the home owner had a shower or flushed the toilet.  This was quite a complicated blocked drain we needed to get a sewer plan from the local water authority.  This plan outlines where drains should run to and termination points such as the boundary trap.

Once we investigated what was happening we returned to site and attempted to locate boundary trap in the front of the property.

We located the cast iron boundary trap that was approximately 2.5m left to right and approximately 1.5m inside boundary when you are looking from the street. Once the boundary trap lid was removed we noticed that the shaft was blocked.  We used our drainage equipment to try and clear the blockage in addition to using CCTV equipment.  The CCTV is like a pair of eyes inside the drain for the plumber.  It gives us a good visual of what is happening inside the drain and what is causing the blocked drain. For instance, the drain could be full of tree roots or the drain pipe could be damaged and broken.

In this case this boundary trap feeds the next door neighbour and was blocked at the base of an old trap. We cleared through with drain machine and tested neighbours drains that runs into this boundary. It was still blocked.

Our next course of action action was to pull out the toilet in the ensuite and insert CCTV.  We now saw that the line was totally blocked and traced the line. Our equipment was getting stuck at a paver location at the front of the property.

We then set up the drainage machine and tried to clear the blocked drain through the toilet branch located at the boundary at front approx 500mm next to the neighbours boundary trap.
DrainTreeRootsWe then moved the drain machine and cleared the lead off with machine. As you can see in this picture from the CCTV equipment, tree roots were the main cause of this blocked drain. Checked with CCTV and lead off to boundary has cracked and there are tree roots present. Cut back with machine up lead off and check ok. Flush through with water, test toilets and fill bath and flush through ok. Drain holds water within 1 meter of trap lead off.

Cleared through boundary with cutter x2 cables check with CCTV and there are tree roots
Present outside property which will need to be cleared out by local water authority. Put the existing toilet back into position and tested.  When you need an expert who can solve your blocked drains on the same day and guarantee a long term solution, call the blocked drain experts. PlumberAssist 1300390045.

2909, 2015

Bathroom Renovation in Ormond

September 29th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Renovations can be tricky work.  Retro fitting into existing spaces, even more trickier sometimes. Trust me on this, we have a semi-detached 1920’s brick home in Melbourne’s South East and having completed Part 1 of our renovation several years ago, Part 2 had been extensively delayed because of the time consuming, tricky nature of the renovation.  Hind sight would have had us knock down and build instead.  Part 2 of the renovation will have us add a second storey to the existing house. Plans and neeearly finalised, so will keep you all posted on our progress.

In the meantime, here is a small bathroom renovation we recently completed in Ormond.

Kitchen, bathroom and laundry renovations are not really part of our core business, however when we have a great working relationship with a client who is constantly renovating properties, we jump at the chance to be of service to them.

This project was for a bathroom renovation upstairs at a property in Ormond.  The existing bathroom had been stripped out, linings and floors removed and was ready for works to begin. The existing bathroom had a shower and vanity.

The new bathroom layout includes the set up for toilet, shower and vanity.
The existing sewer stack runs under the floor in the bathroom. We needed to alter this stack so that we could cut in a junction to run sewer to new toilet position, vanity and shower. Connect vent back up to stack which terminates through roof.
The builder needed to form flooring in shower base and set up a shower grate in position so we could connect up to waste.

Here are a couple of before pictures:

Before Picture

Before Picture

Before Picture

Before Picture


The water pipe work was adjusted  to run to new vanity, toilet and shower positions. Pipe work was run in Rehau piping. Install shower mixer in marked position.
Turn water back on to test new pipe work, silicon around pipes penetrating timbers.
Exact positions of shower mixer/rail and vanity were still to be confirmed. These were needed before commencement of pre pipe.

Once bathroom has been tiled and painted we returned to site and fitted off fixtures. Installed new toilet, connecting up to water supply fitted with mini stop. Connect up tapware and waste for the new vanity. Installed new shower rail, and fit off cover plate and handle for shower mixer.

Here are some pictures of what the bathroom renovation looked like once completed.



After Picture of Basin Vanity

After Picture of Basin Vanity

Shower Rail

Shower Rail


2708, 2015

Quickie Hot Water Installation Kit…An Industry Low

August 27th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Tonight as I work late in the office, my attention turned for a quick news update.

And what I found has left me gobsmacked.

Quickie Hot Water Valve Installation Kits – thanks to the latest Masters brochure.

Two weeks ago A Current Affair ran a report of being cautious of the Fake Tradie. The cameras followed a man into a large retailer where plumbing fixtures and fittings were being bought to allegedly carry out plumbing work at a property.

Well, not only can small plumbing fixtures and fittings be bought at these retailers, but you can also walk in and buy a hot water service. Now, thanks to DIY videos, you get full instructions on how to install the quickie valve too.

It reminds me of the recent raids in Melbourne that uncovered dodgy dental clinics. It raised fears that patients could have been infected with blood-borne diseases such as HIV and Hepatitis. Three homes were raided in Melbourne after a tip-off from a registered dentist.

At least you can’t pop by Bunnings and buy dental equipment.

Here are the facts: The plumbing industry is regulated by the Victorian Building Authority. Plumbers are required to be licensed and (hopefully) insured. A plumber cannot take out public liability insurance without proof of registration and licence.

A plumber must lodge a Certificate of Compliance for any job over $750 including labour and materials. To read more of the blah blah jargon you can click here. Oh – and it’s also illegal to conduct any work on gas and most plumbing without a licence.

So, how can these major retailers be selling and instructing the public on how to “DIY” on such items that require a licence?

Just like the risk of HIV and Hepatitis of patients who used the backyard dentist, so is the risk to your family when your home plumbing has been illegally and/or incorrectly installed.

Some time ago Channel 9 reported an explosion to a home when the home owner attempted some DIY on their hot water service. It’s gas people! There is the likelyhood of an explosion happening.

Seriously, what is the plumbing industry coming to? The VBA need to take a stronger approach. The retailers need to be held accountable because at some point, someone is going to be fatally injured doing some DIY because they walked into a major retailer, watched a YouTube video and thought they would save some money.

In the long run, it costs more. More time. More money….let’s just hope and pray not more lives.

Wake up VBA. You’re charged with overseeing a regulated industry. Regulate it. Stop allowing the general public to purchase fixtures that require a licence to install.

Thanks to @theplumbette for posting the brochure.

408, 2015

3 Things You Should Know About Gas Heating Safety

August 4th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

308, 2015

Easy Drain Cleaning Tips and Tricks

August 3rd, 2015|Blocked Drains, Blogs, Uncategorized|0 Comments

2207, 2015

7 Reasons to Choose Hydronic Heating

July 22nd, 2015|Gas, Hydronic Heating, Uncategorized|0 Comments

ColourfulUggBootsDreary and cold — two things you don’t want to be when winter comes and you’re supposed to get comfortable. Seriously. It’s not fun to feel the icy chill of the weather indoors. So how do you stay warm during a cold Melbourne winter?

Non-stop drinking of whisky and other spirited drinks? Constant movement, perhaps breaking out with Zumba moves when temperatures dip? Or do you simply pile on so many layers of thermal wear that you look as though you’re competing for a Guinness World Record?

While your strategies for getting warm during winter sounds like madcap fun, there is another, much saner way to get nice and comfortable indoors. It doesn’t just heat space; it can also make hot water. Melbourne residents can get homes heated properly with hydronic heating. No drinking necessary (unless you want to). No dancing required (unless there’s good music). And no extra clothing needed.

Here are seven great reasons to replace your existing system or have one installed today:

1. Hydronic heating is one of the more efficient heating systems in the market.
This system uses gas boilers that get 95 percent efficiency ratings. It has the ability to customise heating levels so you can target specific areas and not waste the system on the entire home.

2. It’s a highly reliable heating system.
Hydronic heaters contain few moving parts. So you’re not likely to get any problems with it. But know that it has to come with quality components and it has to be installed by a professional plumber who has worked with this system. With these factors in mind, your hydronic heating system might not even need maintenance for years.

3. It’s eco-friendly.
This heating system uses water – its primary component. Water is recycled and recirculated. But you don’t have to use too much water; only minimal amounts are needed to top it up every year. Also, this system has minimal emissions.

4. It’s very attractive.
Your hydronic heater will not look like some bad industrial accessory. If you go with radiator panels, you can even choose from a line up of sleek and modern designs, for contemporary lofts, or traditional Victorian cast iron, for a vintage apartment. If you go with hydronic floor heating, the home appliance will be hidden with pipe work placed within the floor.

5. It’s easy on the pocket.
You can let your hydronic heating system run all through winter and not pay for expensive energy bills. Some systems can cost about 20 percent less to use than a ducted system.

Also, because it can heat your home and domestic water, and, with some systems, heat your pool, you basically get multiple uses out of it.

6. It’s safe and comfortable for everyone.
It doesn’t have any exposed flames or electrical connections so you don’t have to worry about the kids. It gently heats your home without creating hot spots or noise.

7. It’s healthy.
Finally, this heating system doesn’t create dry or humid environments. With minimal movement of dust or allergens, since you don’t need fans to move the warm air around, it’s safe for those with asthma and other allergies.

If you already have a hydronic heating system in your home, we can organise an experience gas technician to help keep it running in tip top working condition.  Just call us on 1300 390 045 and we can organise this for you now.

2603, 2015

Benefits of Routine Maintenance

March 26th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments



There are many benefits to be had from general maintenance of your plumbing system. A majority of Melbourne homeowners ignore their home plumbing and it remains unchecked for years. After all, you really only call a plumber when you need one. Yet, general maintenance is necessary to keep the plumbing system in good shape. After all, it is one of the most important components of your home.

Here are 3 key benefits from regular care of your plumbing.

Keep the Plumbing System in Working Order
A minor kink can blow into a serious situation. Having your plumbing system regularly checked ensures that every small problem is taken care of when it arises. If you wait a while, the problem could blow out of proportion and you may end up requiring an emergency plumber. Your plumbing system isn’t immune to deterioration and wear and tear. Over time, the system is going to become less effective. With general maintenance, you can ensure that it lasts you a long time without any issues.

Avoid Emergency Plumbing Call-Outs
There are many plumbers in Melbourne who offer 24 hour 7 day emergency service. However, this doesn’t mean that you should leave your plumbing system ignored till an emergency breaks out. An emergency plumber is going to charge you much more money than during regular hours. Moreover, you might have to get expensive replacements and repairs carried out. Hence, keep your plumbing system maintained so that such problems don’t occur.

Save A Little Cash
This point is related to the two mentioned above. If you are having general maintenance of your plumbing system, chances are slim that you will require any repair or replacements. There are tremendous cost savings to be had from caring for your plumbing system. Many a Melbourne plumber will do the maintenance job at a reasonable price for you.

1203, 2015

Avoid A Major Flood

March 12th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

It’s a really common problem and one that can be solved very simply and easily.

Identifying issues in your home to help you avoid any potential plumbing issues can literally save you tens of thousands of dollars and unwanted headaches.

Watch this video to see how easy it is to identify what a “flexi” is and how to identify if it is about to burst and flood your home.

We once attended a flat (unattended) with a locksmith and policeman because a neighbour had notified someone that there was water pouring through their ceiling.

The cause was a burst “flexi” in the upstairs apartment. The occupant had gone away and the “flexi” connecting the kitchen sink tap to the water supply had burst.

The flooding cause major internal damage to the apartment, damage to the corridor and damage to the unit located below.

Bring on the insurance nightmare…..imagine the damage to your furniture, carpet, floorboards, walls, treasured belongings!

And it is so simple to avoid.

Please check your “flexi’s” this weekend. If you see brown spots or fraying, please please call a Melbourne Plumber to come and help you replace them. Your plumber will be able to easily repair the problem and save you literally tens of thousands of dollars in damage and an unwanted insurance claim (if you even have insurance…..)