Customer Service Group

Warranty

The following information will explain the plumbing components and warranty coverage for the plumbing systems and fixtures in your new house.

Our Service Departments:
Southern California - (714) 692-3890
Fax - (714) 692-1509
We do not accept collect calls.

When requesting service please be ready to give your name, street address, phone number, close of escrow date, builder name and tract name. Our service department hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Friday. If you need emergency service after hours or on weekends, call the above number. Only true emergencies will be repaired after normal business hours. If the call is not an emergency instructions will be given to the homeowner to isolate the problem until the next business day.

Non-Warranty Customer Service
Keep in mind that every product with moving parts requires maintenance occasionally. The primary enemy of working plumbing parts is dirt or other foreign material in the water system. We cannot control the quality or purity of your water, nor can the builder of your home; but with regular maintenance these products will give you years of reliable service.

After the one year warranty period, we can continue to service your home at our hourly rate. Because we built your home we know what products were used in your house and are most qualified to perform their maintenance.

Your Warranty Coverage
Piping Systems (Water/Waste and Gas)
All the water, waste and gas systems are warranted to be free of defects for ONE YEAR after your CLOSE OF ESCROW date (COE). Damaged or normal homeowner maintenance items are excluded from this warranty.

The Water System
The water system in your house is made of code approved materials, such as copper or plastic piping.

If you intend to cut into the piping system for sprinkling systems or if you shut off your main water valve, either at the curb or at the house, be sure you unplug your re-circulating hot water pump if you have one. Failure to do so will burn out your pump, and it will not be covered by warranty.

Water pressure regulators are commonly installed on your house. They will be located just above the main water shut off valve at your house. DO NOT ADJUST YOUR WATER PRESSURE REGULATOR TO OVER 70 PSI. Dirt or pipe shavings could cause a reduction of water flow through the regulator. The strainer on the regulator needs to be cleaned yearly.

It is recommended that you call a plumbing professional before adjusting the water pressure regulator.

Your hose bibbs are soldered on. Do not try to remove them with a wrench. The only way to remove them is with a torch. You will also notice a device that is screwed on to the end of your hose bibbs. This device is a vacuum breaker. This is installed to prevent contamination of the potable water system from any source and must not be removed.

Your house may have a re-circulating hot water system. There are two types of re-circulating systems: Timer systems and On-demand systems.

Timer systems have a pump located in the garage. It is important that you use that timer, and set it for the most convenient setting for your household schedule. The recommended times are in the morning, typically ½ hour before you need hot water, and in the late afternoon, typically around dinner time.

On-demand systems do not use a timer, they are activated by use. Hot water is circulated through the system, when and only when, you touch the button and "call" for hot water. These systems help reduce excessive waiting periods for hot water and energy costs.
If you do not have a re-circulating hot water system and you want one, it may be possible to install it. It all depends on your house layout, and the availability of electrical outlets.

IMPORTANT: If you have a hot water re-circulating system with the pump at the water heater, never turn off the main water valve to your house when the pump is running. It will burn out the pump and will not be covered by your warranty.

The Waste System
The waste system in your house is made with code approved materials and installed in an approved manner.

Waste piping is subject to expansion and contraction due to heat or cold. The waste system is strapped to the framing during construction to prohibit movement and maintain installation standards. During the use of the waste system a ticking noise may develop, this is due to the expansion and contraction of the material as a result of hot or cold water being drained in the system. This is not a defect or an emergency.

If your house has a sewer backwater valve, this valve is typically located in your garage slab or landscape area. The backwater valve is a code requirement and is a type of check valve that prevents mainline stoppages from entering back into the house. The valve requires little maintenance. To service the backwater valve, the lid must be removed and the flapper must also be removed. Never attempt to run a drain snake from the rear or side cleanout to the street without removing the flapper first. The snake will be able to pass through the backwater valve, but the flapper will not allow retrieval of the snake. The lid of the backwater valve twists off, and the flapper lifts straight up. If the code requires your backwater valve to be cast iron instead of ABS plastic, then you will need a socket wrench to remove the top.

It is recommended that you call a plumbing professional if servicing this valve is necessary.

The Gas System
The gas system in your house is made of code approved pipe and fittings. The gas meter is located on the utility side of the house or at a banked location on attached housing.

The plumbing contractor connects the gas connectors to the water heater and may connect the gas to your other gas appliances. Your clothes dryer, fireplace log lighter stub out and BBQ stub out all have threaded caps on them. Prior to removing the caps make sure the gas is turned off. It is very important to use two wrenches; one to hold the pipe and one to remove the cap. If you use only one wrench on the cap, you will most likely unscrew the pipe from the wall. Be sure to use pipe joint compound on the threads when connecting gas flex connectors or other pipes. The forced air unit is provided and installed by the heating/cooling contractor.

It is recommended that you call a plumbing professional before working on the gas system in your house.

There is an optional valve that can be installed at your gas meter outlet that is called an earthquake valve. This valve is activated by significant seismic activity. There is an advantage during an earthquake that does damage to a house in having the gas system off. Contact your plumbing professional for more information.

Lead Content
Most sources of drinking water, including those in California, contain some amount of lead. All drinking water sources are regulated under Federal Law. Brass plumbing fixtures, such as faucets, connectors and pipes can also contribute trace amounts of lead to the water.

Although the amount of lead contributed by brass faucets is minimal, we suggest that you take the following precaution: run the water for several seconds in order to clear the faucets and pipes of any standing water before use.

Due to the fact that there is some lead in all brass faucets, California law requires that consumers purchasing these products be provided with the following warning pursuant to the California Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, also known as Proposition 65:

Warning: All brass faucets and other brass plumbing fixtures contain detectable amounts of lead, a chemical know to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm.

THE SOLDER USED IN THE COPPER WATER PIPING SYSTEM OF YOUR HOME IS LEAD FREE.

Water Heater
If you will be away from home for an extended period (more than two days), turn your water heater to the pilot setting. If you do not have a pilot setting, turn water heater to lowest available setting. Failure to do this may result in pressure buildup, known as thermal expansion, and may cause leaks or damage to your water system, faucets, toilets, or washing machine hose.

The water heater is designed to provide hot water 24 hours a day/ 7 days a week with a minimum of maintenance. A yearly flushing of the water heater is recommended for optimal performance. Any rumbling noises heard from the heater are most likely from a build up of minerals inside the tank. These minerals need to be flushed out.

Water Heater Vent Noise
The concealed piping used to vent your water heater through the roof is a Type B gas vent pipe. This is installed per code and per manufacturers' requirements. You may notice a ticking noise as your water heater goes through a heating cycle. This piping is double walled. The exterior wall is sheet metal and the interior wall is aluminum. The two different metals expand and contract at different rates and temperatures. When this expansion occurs it will cause a ticking noise. The architect determines the location of your water heater. There may be only one wall that will accommodate the venting of the water heater and unfortunately the vent may end up in a bedroom wall and cause some distraction.

The ticking noise you may here is due to the expansion and contraction of the venting material. There is nothing wrong with your water heater or the vent pipe. It will make noise. Your previous house may not have had the water heater located where the vent went through the bedroom wall or the old transit (asbestos) vent piping (which is no longer approved) could have been used.

Faucets and Toilets
Products with moving parts have homeowner maintenance responsibilities, defective products will show up as a drip immediately. Dripping faucets and running toilets will be serviced for THE FIRST TWELVE WEEKS AFTER COE. Washers and faucet cartridges are very susceptible to sand, dirt or other foreign particles that may cause them to leak. Be especially careful if you or one of your subcontractors cut into your PVC water service line for landscape or other reasons. Whenever that line is cut into PVC burrs and dirt are introduced into your water system. This may reduce the flow of water through your pressure regulator, your faucets to leak, or your toilets to run due to the dirt in the moving parts. After the first twelve weeks, we must charge for the call as homeowner maintenance items.

Pressure balancing valves are required for showers and tub/shower combinations. These valves should be used at least once a month. The valve has moving parts called balancing spools that may corrode if they sit in water without moving for an extended period of time, and the valve may not work properly.

The plumbing fixtures in your house comply with California's mandatory water conservation regulations. Current toilets flush with 1.6 gallons of water, or less, as opposed older models that used 5-gallons per flush. Your showerheads have a 2.5 gallon per minute flow restrictor in them, this may be why you feel the volume of water is not as good as you might have expected. Your lavatory aerators also contain a flow restrictor.

Deck Mounted Tub Spouts
Do not stand on or lean hard against the tub spouts or use the tub spouts as grab bars. They are installed via a quick connect type fitting and is not designed to be used as a grab bar or push point. The spout may come loose and cause a non warranty leak.

Bathtubs
Your bathtubs will need to be re-caulked if you notice the grout cracking or falling out where the tub and tile meet, or around the plumbing fixtures. Failure to do so will result in a leak that is not covered by warranty. Re-caulking may be necessary after an earthquake, which shakes the grout loose from the tub in most instances.

Be cautious to not overfill your bathtub. The overflow plate, located a few inches below the top of your tub, is a safety drain and is not designed to handle all of the water that the faucet can put out or water displaced by your body in an overfilled tub.

Kitchen Faucets
Your kitchen may be equipped with a pull out spray type faucet. When using the pull out spray it is important not to spray water onto the hose port (where the hose emerges from the faucet or base plate). Any water that enters the hose port might be interpreted as a leak under the kitchen sink.

Icemakers
Your home is equipped with a dedicated line to the icemaker box location. It is fed from a line underneath the kitchen sink. The icemaker box has a ¼ inch angle stop to supply water to the refrigerator. Underneath the kitchen sink there is a valve that controls the dedicated line to the icemaker box.

The reason for the piping and the valve under the kitchen sink is so you may have the water to the refrigerator connected to a water filtration system, such as a reverse osmosis system. These system upgrades may be installed at any time. Our design also allows you to change filters for the refrigerator without pulling the refrigerator away from the wall and possibly damaging the flooring. If you choose not to add an after market water filter/reverse osmosis unit, it is important to be sure the valve is in the open position, otherwise the water to the recessed box will be turned off.

Disposals
Your garbage disposal is designed to grind up most food waste. We do not recommend placing the following items into the disposal: bones, coffee grounds, grease/fats, etc. Moderation is the key when using the disposal. To help avoid jams we recommend having the water running before placing any items in the disposal and only grinding up small amounts of waste at a time. In the event that the disposal becomes jammed you can use the wrench, which should be found in your move-in kit, to un-jam the disposal. Insert the wrench into the slot in the bottom of the disposal, and turn it in both directions. Whatever jammed the disposal should dislodge and may be carefully removed through the mouth of the disposal. Remember the disposal is not designed to be batch fed.

Periodically a 16 oz. cup of ice placed in the disposal and ground up, along with running water, will help keep the blades clean and keep the openings in the grinding surface free of debris.

Washing Machine
Use only new water supply hoses when connecting clothes washer, be sure to secure the drain hose so it will not dislodge from the drain hole. Professional installation is recommended.

Condensate Drains for Air Conditioners
The drain(s) go from your forced air unit to the nearest drain outlet or to the exterior of the house. Forced air units located in the attic will have two drains, one primary and one secondary. The primary drain is connected to a plumbing fixture or drained to the exterior of the house. The secondary drain discharges over an exterior door or window and is a safety drain. If you notice water coming from the secondary drain, it means the primary drain is clogged and service is required.

The heating contractor connects the drain line at the forced air unit. Before pouring outside walks or patios, check to see if there are any pipes sticking out, as it may a drain. Do not cover it or you will have an overflow at your forced air unit. If in doubt call your plumbing professional for assistance.

Balcony Drains
Some balconies are designed so that a drain is not needed. If you balcony has a drain, it may require maintenance. We recommend that you pour water down the drain to ensure that it is flowing freely. They may become clogged with debris or leaves, which is not covered under warranty. These drains do not go into the sewer system; they discharge into landscape areas.

Drainage or Waste Line Stoppages
Drainage or waste line stoppages (such as toilets, sinks, tubs, showers, disposals, etc.) will be covered for TWELVE WEEKS after COE. This allows ample time for a stoppage caused by construction debris to occur. There is a charge for us to clear stoppages after this twelve week period.
Stoppages are usually a result of what is put down a drain. Too much paper (tissue, toilet paper, feminine products, baby wipes, etc.) or other foreign material (toys, q-tips, etc.) being flushed the down toilets are causes of stoppages. If you notice a slow drain, do not flush the toilet as this may cause the toilet to overflow. Please call for service or assistance if this occurs. See the waste system section for more information.

Dripping Faucets, Running Toilets
The most common reason faucets or toilets run is dirt or other foreign particles getting into the faucet cartridges or valve assemblies.

Product Defects
Any suspected defective product will be subject to the manufacturer's inspection and conditions of replacement per the manufacturer's warranty. Please notify your plumber immediately if you feel you have a defective product.

Fixtures
The types, finishes & features of the fixtures installed in your house were selected by the builder. Plumbing Concepts, Inc. has installed only new and first quality products.

All fixtures; i.e. faucets, tubs, sinks, lavatories, toilets and toilet seats, need to be inspected by the homeowner within the first FOUR WEEKS of occupancy. Damaged or defective items must be called in to our Customer Service Department within the first FOUR WEEKS. After that period, damaged or scratched items will be available for replacement through Plumbing Concepts, Inc. at a reasonable charge for material and labor.

Finishes
We ask that you inspect each faucet, sink, lavatory, tub, shower, toilet, toilet seat, etc. closely WITHIN THE FIRST TWO WEEKS OF YOUR OCCUPANCY for possible visual flaws. Occasionally a product may have a factory blemish or unseen defect, after the first FOUR WEEKS we will continue to respond on factory defects but will have to charge for scratched or abused fixtures or toilet seats.

The manufactures recommend that nothing stronger than soap and water be used on faucets. Abrasives should never be used on tubs, sinks, and lavatories. Remember that the more abrasive the cleaner, the shorter time the gloss on the fixture will last.

Bowl Cleaners
Bowl cleaners that are placed in the toilet tanks will cause the flappers and washers to break down, warp or fall apart. If chemicals have been added to the toilet tank, it will void the warranty on these parts and a charge to repair or replace will result. Toilet bowl cleaners that are introduced directly into the bowl will not harm the toilet.

The manufactures recommend that nothing stronger than soap and water be used on faucets. Abrasives should never be used on tubs, sinks, and lavatories. Remember that the more abrasive the cleaner, the shorter time the gloss on the fixture will last.

Emergencies

Call our Customer Service number 714-692-3890 and follow the voice prompts for emergency service. You will receive a return call and the plumber will determine if it is an actual emergency. Example of actual emergencies are: water leaking from the ceiling or light fixtures or any other unknown source, gas leaks or mainline sewer stoppages (multiple first floor fixtures are clogged or backed-up with water). If the call is not a true emergency, the homeowner will be given instructions over the phone that will isolate the problem until the next business day.

In the event of a water leak in a wall or ceiling turn off the main shut-off valve which is located where the water main enters your house or garage. To shut-off a ball valve turn the lever until it is at a 90 degree angle with the pipe.

Individual fixtures (such as toilets, kitchen sinks, lavatories, etc.) have separate water shut-off valves for hot and cold below them. If you notice water around the base of your toilet or in the cabinets below your sinks turn the handle on the shut off valve clockwise to shut off the flow of water.