Get Acquainted With Plumbing - Speed Dating Style

3 Fun Facts About Plumbing

Not everyone is a plumbing expert. Most homeowners have a rudimentary understanding of drains, pipes, fixtures, and some basic knowledge of how to spot a problem and how to fix it. But there is a fun side to plumbing, too. If a plumbing system participated in a speed dating event, the "getting to know you" questions might be pretty interesting.

Here are three frequently asked questions that many people are eager to know about plumbing. 

Why Are Toilets Sometimes Called "the John"?

The nickname "the John" may be attributed to Sir John Harrington, a member of Britain's royal court in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. He did not invent the first flushing toilet, but he did devise the first flushing toilet ever seen in England.

His invention utilized a pull cord and a "water closet" to flush away excrement. Sir John had one installed in his home, and later one was made for Queen Elizabeth I. His invention was so innovative that Sir John Harrington became known as the modern toilet's inventor. It is thought that the nickname "the John" is a reference to him.

However, some etymologists believe "the John" is just an evolution of what the bathroom was called long ago, as early as the 16th century. When speaking of such things was considered vulgar, people often referred to the bathroom as "Jake's house," which was eventually shortened to "the Jakes." This was again shortened later to just "Jake" or "Jack." "The John" is probably related to these terms, as well as to another polite nickname, "Cousin John."

Does Water Drain the Opposite Way in the Southern Hemisphere?

Cyclones probably influenced the legend that water drains in the opposite direction south of the equator. Being formed in the ocean and affected by shifting masses of air and the earth's rotation, cyclones rotate counterclockwise in the northern hemisphere and clockwise in the southern hemisphere. This is known as the Coriolis effect.

But bathtubs, toilets, and sinks are far too small to be affected by the Coriolis effect. The direction in which they drain is mostly influenced by the fixture's design, the levelness of the drain, and the currents in the water just before draining. These things are fairly standard worldwide, so water almost always drains in the same direction, regardless of location.

How Much Water Can a Leaky Faucet Waste?

A dripping faucet may seem like no big deal (other than an annoying drip sound), but the amount of water wasted can add up! If a leaky faucet is dripping at a rate of one drip per second, it can result in over 3,000 gallons of wasted water in a year. For perspective, that's the equivalent of about 180 showers. 

Even as little as three drips per minute from a single faucet will waste over 100 gallons of water per year. A leaky faucet can increase the water bill by up to 10% each month. That's an expensive leak! This is why it is much more cost-effective and kinder to the environment to have any dripping faucets repaired as soon as possible.

Get Acquainted With Miracle Plumbing Inc.

Residents of San Jose, CA have been trusting Miracle Plumbing Inc. for over 30 years. They have experience with leak repairs, drain cleaning, clogged toilet repair, water heater services, repiping, and much more. With speedy service, quality workmanship, and affordable prices, it's no wonder they're called Miracle Plumbing Inc.! Call now for expert plumbing services!