Red Deer Plumb-Pro Patio Pool Heater Hydronics Extend Your Season

5 More Ways to Extend Your Summer Season

In case you missed the first post, click here for 5 ways to extend your outdoor season using natural gas. As we continue to experience unpredictable Alberta weather, we thought up 5 more ways to help you get the most out of your summer season using natural gas and hydronic heating systems. Red Deer Plumb-Pro specializes in new construction and renovation projects for gas fitting and hydronics, so give us a call when you’re ready to start your next project.


  1. Natural Gas Pool and Hot Tub Heater

If you are lucky enough to have a pool in your backyard, consider a natural gas pool heater to extend your swimming season. These devices are less expensive than propane or electric pool heaters, and they heat water much faster, so they are more energy efficient, too.


  1. Natural Gas Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor lighting is probably the most important element to summer entertaining and keeping that party going long into the night. Natural gas lighting provides a soft glow without harsh shadows, and doesn’t attract mosquitos and bugs like electric lights.


  1. Patio heaters

You’ve probably seen them on outdoor patios at fancy restaurants, versatile patio heaters that can be placed anywhere you need a little extra heat, up to a 20 ft. radius. You can get portable versions as well as in-ground and deck-mounted units, and they come in different sizes to accommodate smaller sized decks and balconies.


  1. Heated Flooring

At Red Deer Plumb-Pro, we specialize in hydronic heating systems installations like radiant in-floor heating. Install underfloor or under slab heating in your deck or patio to get the most out of your summer season, and, as a bonus the radiant heating will keep the snow cleared in winter!


  1. Radiant Heaters

Another option for radiant heating is versatile radiant heaters. Portable electric models can be mounted and moved as needed, or you can try wall-mounted models that are more permanent and can be left out year-round.

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Red Deer Plumb Pro residential commerical bathroom plumbing renovation luxuries

Bathroom Renovation Luxury Essentials

So your bathroom is functional, but not exactly beautiful. You want an attractive spa-like bathroom where you can relax in the tub and steam away your stress. Not sure where to start? Check out Red Deer Plumb-Pro’s tips on bathroom renovation basics first, then check out our luxury renovation essentials that will take your bathroom to the next level.


  • Open concept shower. Showers that don’t require curtains or doors are the latest trend! They are also less confining and can be more elegant and relaxing with the right tile and accessory choices.
  • Showerhead. Consider a dual showerhead system for the ultimate in luxury. You can purchase a dual-function showerhead with overhead rainfall and handheld showerhead options or you can call Red Deer Plumb-Pro for help installing a dual showerhead plumbing system.
  • Soaker bathtub. Bigger, deeper bathtubs for two people are the ultimate luxury. Make sure you sit in the bathtub before you buy it– make sure the angled back and the lip are comfortable.
  • Dual sink. Another bathroom trend for master bathrooms is a dual his-and-hers sink area.
  • Underfloor heating. Warm (not freezing) tile floors are an absolute must in our unpredictable climate.
  • Found space. Consider using space between wall studs to maximize storage and save floor space. You can also install recessed cubbies in your shower to hold all your products.
  • Bigger hot water heater. If you’re considering luxury options that might use more hot water, consider replacing your current hot water heater with a more energy efficient model that is better able to handle the hot water demands.
  • Gas fireplace. Nothing beats a long soak in the tub next to a roaring fire in the middle of winter. Plumb-Pro can help install a natural gas line to your house and get you set up with a gas fireplace insert to suit your needs.


Plumb-Pro’s journeyman gasfitters and plumbers can help make your residential and commercial bathroom renovation dreams a reality, so give us a call today!

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Red Deer Plumb-Pro residential commercial bathroom renovation basics

Bathroom Renovation Plumbing Basics

Your bathroom should be both beautiful and functional, no matter the size. If your bathroom isn’t addressing all your needs, it may be time for a renovation. Whatever the reason for your renovation, Red Deer Plumb-Pro can help with your residential or commercial plumbing renovations. Here are the top things to consider when contemplating a bathroom renovation.


  • Bathtub. Always sit in a bathtub to assess comfort before purchasing. Check backrest angles and bathtub lips for neck comfort, and make sure the tub is deep enough for your needs.
  • Shower. Consider an open-concept shower or dual showerhead system. Red Deer Plumb-Pro can also help you update your plumbing and draining system.
  • Fixtures. When selecting new fixtures, look for quality and durability wherever possible. Choose from finishes like chrome, brass, and copper, but keep the style of the bathroom consistent.
  • Toilet. Today’s toilets are more efficient than ever, so consider upgrading yours with Red Deer Plumb-Pro’s journeyman plumbers to install a high-efficiency toilet to help you conserve water and save money. Another thing to consider is the shape of your toilet. Toilets with elongated bowls and seats are usually the most comfortable.
  • Sinks. Pedestal sinks tend to visually enlarge a room, but vanities with storage can be boxy and unattractive.
  • Floors. Look for durable flooring like ceramic, marble, and stone. Consider easy care and nonslip options like textured or matte surfaces and finishes, too.

Plumbing should always be the first thing you think about when considering a bathroom renovation. Red Deer Plumb-Pro specializes in residential and commercial bathroom renovations, so give us a call today!

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Red Deer Plumb-Pro modulating condensing hydronic gas boiler system

The Boiler of the Future: High Efficiency Modulating Condensing Boilers

In North America, most homes are heated with furnaces or hydronic boiler systems. The ratio of annual heat output compared to annual energy consumed by your furnace or boiler is called AFUE, used to determine its efficiency. Over the past 20 years, higher-efficiency boilers have taken over the market, and residential gas boilers sold in Canada must have an AFUE rating of 82% or higher, but condensing boilers blow them out of the (hot) water at a whopping 90% or higher, making them “the boiler of the future.”


High Efficiency Boilers

  • Fueled by gas or oil
  • Use waste heat to preheat cold water that enters the boiler
  • Condenses water vapour to liquid water
  • Increases efficiency by 10-12%
  • Typically have a 90-98.5% AFUE ratio
  • Require a drainpipe for the condensation produced during operation
  • Can be more expensive short-term, but can help save you money in the long run


Conventional Boilers

  • Burn fuel that produce gases (including steam) that pass through a heat exchanger to transfer heat to water and raise the temperature
  • Typically have a 56-70% AFUE ratio for lower efficiency systems, and 80-83% ratio for mid-range efficiency hydronic systems
  • Have a natural draft that creates a flow of combustion gases but can be outfitted with an exhaust fan to control the flow better
  • Might have a continuous pilot light or an electronic ignition
  • Heavy heat exchanger


Older models can be retrofitted to comply with the new regulations, increase their efficiency, and save you money, something that a Red Deer Plumb-Pro journeyman plumber can help with!

In Western Canada, energy suppliers sometimes offer energy rebates when these high efficiency modulating condensing boiler systems are installed, so replacing your conventional boiler (or furnace) is also an option. Red Deer Plumb-Pro’s installation professionals specialize in maintenance and installation of high efficiency modulating condensing boilers, so if your hydronic boiler system is not performing up to speed, give us a call today!

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Your Hot Water Heater: Fix or Replace?

Your hot water heater is probably the most important appliance in your home, especially in winter, so when it starts to go, it’s a big deal. Hot water heaters Plumb-Pro-hot-water-heater-plumbing-hydronics-boiler
should last between 10-15 years, which is good, because they’re not cheap.

To keep your hot water heater working longer, regular maintenance should be performed on it at least once a year by a Plumb-Pro journeyman plumber. You can also try flushing your hot water heater yourself on a regular basis, every six months or so, but sometimes you just need a new one. Here are some signs that will help you decide when your hot water heater needs replacing.

  • The tank leaks. If you notice any standing water around your tank, call Red Deer Plumb-Pro right away to avoid flooding or other damage to your home. The hot water heater will need to be turned off, cooled, and drained before it can be repaired or replaced.
  • Temperature issues. This could mean any number of things, from needing to replace the elements or the entire heater, to the pilot light being out or having a tripped circuit breaker.  If your hot water heater no longer produces hot water, or if the hot water doesn’t last as long as it used to, Plumb-Pro’s journeyman plumbers will be able to diagnose your unit and help you replace it or get it fixed.
  • Water is brown or tastes metallic. This can be an indicator that your hot water heater is on its last legs and will probably fail soon. Trying to fix this yourself can cause injury and damage. Give Plumb-Pro a call instead as soon as you notice a change in your water quality so you’re not left hanging.
  • Funny noises. Cracks and pops are normal if annoying, and flushing the tank to remove sediment buildup can fix the problem. If you’ve tried flushing your hot water heater, or the cracks and pops have escalated to banging and knocking, call a Plumb-Pro plumber to replace the heating element.
  • Pieces of white plastic coming out of your faucets. The plastic is likely from a deteriorating tube in your tank, and can indicate other deteriorating components in your hot water heater. This problem is often accompanied by a shorter duration of hot water, but our journeyman plumbers can assess your hot water heater and get you a new one if needed.
  • Gas pilot won’t stay lit or you smell gas near the unit. We have licensed gas fitters to help replace your gas valve, but keep in mind that if your hot water heater is getting on in years, it’s probably better to replace it.
  • You’ve tried draining your tank, but nothing comes out. This means there is a buildup of sediment, and will probably mean you need to replace your hot water heater. Call Red Deer Plumb-Pro at 403.588.2619.


If any of the above issues occur within 2 years of expiration of warranty, call Red Deer Plumb-Pro to have your hot water heater replaced rather than repaired.


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Red Deer Plumb Pro Sink Repair Plumbing Journeyman Plumber

Why Should You Choose Plumb-Pro?

Ideally, you should have a ready list of contractors before you need them so you don’t have to worry about it during a crisis but there are tons of plumbing companies out there, and wading through reviews and website About Us pages takes time that you don’t have. So what should you look for and how do you choose a plumber? Here are the top four things you should look at when choosing a plumber.

How long have they been in business?

This is a good indicator of expertise and reliability. Red Deer Plumb-Pro has over 25 years of experience ranging from repairing washers on a forty-year-old faucet to installations on modulating condenser boilers, and gas and water lines, so you can call us and have peace of mind.


What is the scope of their expertise?

It’s much easier to call one company for all your hydronics, gas fitting, and plumbing needs than to mess around with a lot of different companies. Red Deer Plumb-Pro is a full service company, and we can help with any commercial or residential project, large or small.


Are their plumbers, gas fitters, and technicians certified or trained properly?

Red Deer Plumb-Pro’s hydronics installation professionals are certified in the maintenance and installation of boilers and boiler systems as well as hydronic heating systems, and our journeyman gasfitters and plumbers can take care of everything from gas lines, renovations, and furnace repair, to water lines, and leaky pipes.


Do they offer emergency response plumbing?

Plumbing emergencies don’t quit at 5, and neither does Red Deer Plumb-Pro. We’re available to help after hours during the week and on weekends as well.

Call us for all your plumbing, gasfitting, and hydronic heating needs!

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Hydronics versus Hydroponics

Hydronics have been around a long time, but with new technologies making them more cost efficient and environmentally-friendly, hydronics are becoming more popular with the home improvement crowd. However, hydronics is awfully close to hydroponics, at least in terms of appearance. In fact, search engines and autocorrect technologies will often confuse the two words, despite their being vastly different. So what is the difference between hydronics and hydroponics and does it even matter?


  • The use of radiant heat to heat homes and other buildings
  • Heating occurs by transferring water through a pipe system that warms the surrounding environment
  • Hydronic heating systems allow you to set different temperatures for each room
  • Can include outdoor heating systems such as heating pools, roofs, or driveways
  • Hydronics includes different energy source options like gas boilers, solar collectors, and gas water heaters



Plumb-Pro Example of HydroponicsHydroponics

  • A method of growing plants in sand, gravel or liquid, but without the use of soil
  • Hydroponic systems use plant nutrients dissolved in water in inorganic or ionic form
  • Hydronics use substantially less water than a regular farm to produce the same amount of food
  • Water is delivered to the plant root system via hanging directly in the solution, being misted by the solution, or in a container accompanied by a soil replacement like sand or gravel


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10 Things You Should Know About Hydronic Heating Systems

Hydronic heating systems such as steam and hot water radiators have been around a long time, but recent technology improvements have given them a  face-lift. The following are ten important things to think about before installing hydronics in your home.

  1. Hydronics is a fancy word for heating by transferring water through pipes. The heat in the pipes warms up the surrounding environment as it travels through your home or building.
  2. Water is one of the best known conductors of heat, so there is little heat loss when using hydronics to heat your home.
  3. Hydronics can be used to cool your home as well as heat it. But in Canada, we mostly just use it to heat our homes.
  4. Hydronic heating systems give you the best energy source options to choose from, including gas boilers, gas water heaters, heat pumps and solar collectors.
  5. Hydronic heating systems are one of the most quiet options on the market, even quieter than the noise you already hear in your house.
  6. Hydronic heating systems are also one of the most flexible heating systems on the market, letting you set a different temperature for each room depending on your preferences.
  7. Hydronic heating systems help reduce the presence of allergens in your home because it doesn’t use air to heat the rooms.
  8. Hydronics uses radiant heat, which heats up the source objects rather than the air in the rooms. This means temperatures will fluctuate less when using hydronic heating systems and will save you money and energy.
  9. Hydronic heating systems are easy to integrate into the structure of most buildings using small, flexible tubing that can be routed through the framing like electrical cable. It can be used to heat your basement as well as the upper floors in your house or building.
  10. Outdoor hydronic heating systems can be used to heat your roof, sidewalk, or driveway to minimize snow and ice buildup.
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