Home Plumbing

What’s Considered a Plumbing Emergency?

Today, we want to take the time to answer a question we get pretty often from homeowners: “How can I tell when I’m experiencing a plumbing emergency?” As you know, when you have a plumbing problem, you’re either going to schedule an appointment for a standard service call or call for emergency plumbing services. It can be difficult to determine what constitutes a true plumbing emergency. Many of your plumbing issues can seem quite urgent because so many of them involve potential water damage. We’re here to make it simple today.

We’re experts in everything plumbing in Peoria, AZ. We want to help you figure out when you need to make that after-hours call versus what can wait. Let’s get into a few instances that you should call us urgently below. 

Reasons to Call for Emergency Plumbing

These are the questions that you should ask yourself if you’re trying to determine if you’re having an emergency plumbing problem or not.

What’s the Weather Like?

So let’s start off by checking the weather. We know that this may seem like we’re getting off topic, but it actually has a lot to do with your home’s plumbing services. Here in Arizona, the weather you’re going to want to watch out for is our extreme warm weather. This is the weather we’re experiencing here more often than not and it can exacerbate certain plumbing issues. If you’re having a sewer issue during a heat wave, the heat combined with the scent of a sewer can make your home quite the unpleasant place to inhabit. This can potentially escalate an otherwise benign situation into a plumbing emergency.

Will There Be More Damage If I Leave the Problem Alone?

Now you should weigh the risk of waiting. Let’s say that you determine whatever you’re experiencing isn’t a plumbing emergency. This problem struck outside of normal HVAC hours and you’re going to wait until tomorrow morning to call a plumber to address the issue. Is this going to put your home at risk? Things like major leaks or gas line problems can put your home at risk and we suggest bumping these up into the emergency zone. 

Can You Turn the Appliance or Fixture Off?

If you’re having trouble with a minor leak and you can shut off the water flow to that fixture, this might not be a plumbing emergency. We suggest taking this route if possible and then calling a professional to get them out to your home at their earliest availability. 

Do You Need to Use this Plumbing System Soon?

The frequency that you use a certain plumbing system can actually determine whether something is a plumbing emergency or not. If you have one bathroom at home and you’re having no water flow from your showerhead, then this would automatically become a plumbing emergency. The same logic would apply if you were having an issue like this with your toilet. Don’t wait if you need a fixture or appliance urgently. 

Contact The Trusted Plumber when you want quality emergency plumbing services in the area.

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Home Plumbing

Debunking Garbage Disposal Cleaning Trends

Finding a fast, easy way to clean your garbage disposal might seem like a dream come true, but viral video hacks claiming to leave your system cleaner can end up doing more harm than good. Before you head to TikTok for a crash course in cleaning your garbage disposal, you might want to read up on why plumbing professionals advise against using these methods and what you can do instead to get your system squeaky clean!

Why These Garbage Disposal Cleaning Hacks Don’t Work the Way You Think

The Ice Method

Search for a garbage disposal cleaning hack online, and you’ll likely be led to a series of viral TikTok videos of various DIYers shoving as many ice cubes as possible into their systems. After running the disposal, they turn on the hot water, causing a nasty, brown liquid to bubble up from the disposal. According to the videos, this liquid is evidence that the hack is doing its job and pulling the gunk from your drain. However, that’s not exactly the truth.

Stuffing ice cubes down the disposal to full capacity can actually clog your drain line. When this happens, and the hot water is turned on while your disposal is in use, the dark water that bubbles to the surface is actually wastewater backing up into your sink — gross.

The Bleach Method

Some homeowners may think that sending bleach, ammonia, or other abrasive liquids down their garbage disposal systems might be the most effective way to clean them. However, these cleaning agents can do more damage to your septic tank, pipes, and disposal impellers due to their increased corrosiveness compared to other cleaning methods. Over time, using these substances repeatedly to clean your system can eat away at the garbage disposal and your pipes, leading them to break down prematurely.

The Hand Method

While it’s rare that homeowners attempt to dislodge whatever blockage is affecting their garbage disposal by inserting their hands into their systems, it has happened. Contrary to popular belief, garbage disposals do not have blades. Instead, they have impellers that use centrifugal force to spin food against a stationary grind ring. You might not amputate a finger by sticking your hand down the disposal as you might think, but you still could end up with a nasty injury.

How To Clean Your Garbage Disposal the Right Way

If you’re looking for a fast, easy way to clean your garbage disposal, plumbers recommend following the steps below:

  • Step one: Add a few ice cubes to your disposal.
  • Step two: Sprinkle in some coarse rock or sea salt and a few lemon wedges.
  • Step three: Turn on the cold water and run the disposal until the ice is cleared.

By adding the salt, you’ll be able to clean the disposal blades more effectively. The lemon wedges work to neutralize odors so that your sink smells citrusy fresh. Making this a part of your kitchen cleaning routine is a great way to keep strong odors from stinking up your culinary space. By incorporating this cleaning routine and keeping certain materials from entering your disposal in the first place, you’ll be able to keep your garbage disposal running smoothly for years to come.

When To Contact a Plumber for Garbage Disposal Service

Sometimes, the only way to remove a clog from your garbage disposal is through professional assistance. If your garbage disposal needs repair or maintenance, Len The Plumber has the plumbing experts you need to get the job done right.

Call us at (800) 950-4619 to schedule garbage disposal services in your home today!

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Home Plumbing

Top 5 Benefits of Water Heater Maintenance

Scheduling water heater maintenance for your system might not be at the top of your to-do list, but there are many reasons why it should be. Professional water heater maintenance provides homeowners with numerous system benefits that they wouldn’t experience otherwise. Read on to discover the benefits you’re missing out on if you don’t schedule routine water heater maintenance with a plumbing professional!

1. Keep the Manufacturer’s Warranty Active

Did you know that annual system maintenance is required to keep your manufacturer warranty active? It’s true — unless you adhere to the professional maintenance schedule outlined in your owner’s manual, you could be sacrificing your warranty. That means if your system ever malfunctions within the warranty period, you won’t be able to take advantage of any repair services that might be covered unless you can prove your unit was maintained annually.

2. Improve System Energy Efficiency

With time, minerals will settle at the bottom of your water heater, making it increasingly difficult for your unit to produce hot water. Inevitably, this will reduce the amount of water available to heat, lowering your hot water supply — especially if you have a traditional storage tank system rather than a tankless water heater. During water heater maintenance, your plumbing professional will remove any mineral buildup within your system. By removing sediment from your water heater, your system will be able to operate much more efficiently.

3. Identify Repair Needs Early

In addition to removing excess sediment from your system, your plumbing maintenance professional will also help identify repair needs early. This will help you better anticipate what water heater repair requests you may need in the near future and can also help you prevent a full system breakdown. And by better understanding your water heater’s current health, you’ll be able to plan financially for your system’s needs rather than facing an unexpected expense down the road.

4. Reduce Water Expenses

One of the greatest benefits to professional water heater maintenance is the reduced water expenses you’ll incur as a result. As your plumber eliminates excess buildup within your system to improve efficiency, this will translate into lower operational costs throughout the year as your unit doesn’t have to work as hard to produce hot water. You’ll also enjoy reduced water heater ownership costs as well since your plumber will be able to identify and repair small problems before they escalate into a professional repair request.

5. Increase System Longevity

With proper system maintenance, your water heater unit can last up to 20 years or longer, depending on the type of system you have installed. However, an annual maintenance schedule is the only way to achieve this type of longevity. Systems that do not undergo annual maintenance are much more likely to break down and require replacement prematurely.

Schedule Water Heater Maintenance With Len The Plumber!

If it’s been more than a year since your last water heater flush, Len The Plumber has the plumbing professionals you need to maintain your system. Our water heater maintenance services will leave you with improved system efficiency, performance, and longevity so you can enjoy stress-free hot water access in your home.

Schedule water heater maintenance with Len The Plumber by calling (800) 950-4619 today!

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Home Plumbing

How to Stop an Overflowing Toilet

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What To Do If Your Toilet Overflows

Stopping an overflowing toilet requires quick thinking and fast action. Fortunately, if you know how to take care of it, it’s not hard to do!

The first thing to do is quickly and carefully remove the lid from the toilet tank and set it aside. Make sure you put it somewhere secure but don’t worry about laying it on towels or anything like that – remember, you don’t have much time to lose!

Next, reach inside the toilet tank and press down on the flapper valve (don’t worry, the water in the tank is sanitary). The flapper is the rubber piece in the bottom center of the tank. Doing this will stop more water from getting into the bowl and should prevent it from overflowing over the sides.

Once you’ve got the flapper valve secured, stop the tank from filling by lifting up on the float that operates the tank fill valve. With the main water supply cut off, the water level in the bowl should start to drop slowly. If the water level drops back to normal after about a minute, you should be able to let go of the float and let the bowl refill without worrying about it overflowing. Make sure you keep an eye on it so you can stop it if the level starts to get too high.

If the water level doesn’t start to drop after about a minute, continue to hold the float while you shut off the water at the toilet supply valve, located near the floor or in the wall behind the toilet – turn it clockwise (to the right) to close it. If you can’t reach the valve while holding the float, let go of the ball and close the valve as fast as you can.

Once the Toilet Has Stopped Overflowing

Stop using all toilets, sinks, and other plumbing fixtures.Try to use a plunger to see if you can remove any blockages from the drain.Try to find the source of the problem, starting from the fixtures in the bathroom and working your way up. While checking fixtures on the upper floors, it helps to have a partner watching the lower floors – otherwise, it’s hard to know whether upstairs drains are actually working or are just backing up into lower drains.If only one toilet is blocked, the problem is most likely just with that toilet. However, if multiple toilets are affected, you might have a blocked system drain or a failing septic field.If you can’t get the clog out on your own, call Len The Plumber! We’ll send a plumbing professional to your home to take care of the issue quickly and cleanly. Same-day service, seven days a week!

Once you’ve stopped your toilet from overflowing, call Len The Plumber at 800-950-4619! We provide toilet repair throughout the Mid-Atlantic region seven days a week. Click here to contact us today!

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Home Plumbing

Smart Home Automation for Your Home’s Plumbing System

You’ve got a home automation app for everything from turning on your oven to closing your garage door. But how about using this same smart home technology to save you thousands by preventing a major plumbing issue or saving you money on your water bill?

Smart home automation is helping to make our lives easier so it’s no surprise that smart plumbing technology is becoming part of the high-tech highway.  Check out these ways smart home automation is working with your home’s plumbing system today.

Smart Leak Detectors

Perhaps the most important home automation system you can install for your home’s plumbing is a smart leak detector. This device alerts you when it detects water from appliances where it shouldn’t be and can send a notification to your phone while you are away!

Whole-Home Leak Detection System

New to the market is a whole-home water monitoring system that can not only detect if your home has a leak in its plumbing system, but it can identify its location and alert you via your smartphone. The technology also enables it to shut off a water supply line if it detects an issue. That’s a gamechanger when it comes to preventing costly water damage.

Smart Appliances

From faucets that automatically fill to the desired level, to washing machines that can be activated remotely, smart appliances are helping homeowners conserve water and energy.

LED Temperature Monitors

If you have small children or love your bath at a specific temperature an LED temperature monitor is for you.  Smart fixtures and appliances offer an LED screen that enables you to read when the water has reached your desired temperature.

Smart Irrigation System

Have you ever been annoyed that your sprinkler system set on a manual timer activates no matter what the weather? Save energy with a smart home irrigation system that adapts to weather changes and tracks soil status to prevent your landscaping from getting over or under-watered.

Smart Sump Pump System

Prevent basement flooding with a smart sump pump system that gives you real time data, smart diagnostics, and early warnings about your sump pump activity. Sump pumps work in your basement or crawl space to ensure groundwater does not rise to the level of your basement floor and cause a flood. You likely don’t realize it’s working but you will definitely know if it is not! Sump pumps pump the water up and away from your home. If your sump pump fails, is inefficient, or is in need of maintenance, the smart pump system can send an alert to your mobile device so you can avoid major basement flooding.

Choose Len The Plumber for Smart Home Automation Plumbing Technology

Smart technology is flooding into our daily lives. Why not let this technology help you conserve water and save you money by preventing costly repairs? Smart home technology is easier than you think to integrate into your home’s plumbing system. Our experts at Len The Plumber can help you navigate the smart home technology field and make it work for you.

Contact Len The Plumber online or call our team at 800-950-4619 to learn more about our smart home automation plumbing technology.

Home Plumbing

Can Your Sump Pump Handle Melting Snow & Rain?

As winter comes to a close and the snow begins to melt, many homeowners will struggle to keep their basements flood-free. Without the right sump pump solution in place, the spring thaw can bring catastrophic water damage in your home. In order to ensure your system is up to the task of handling melting snow and rain, you need to thoroughly test your unit ahead of the warmer weather. Doing so now can help you avoid costly repair and replacement requests in the future!

Making Sure Your Sump Pump Can Handle Melting Snow & Ice

Before the snow and ice start melting, it’s important to make sure your sump pump is able to handle the increased flow of water to your basement. Homeowners can test their system to ensure it’s working in full force by following the steps below:

Step One: Locate the outside pipe that catches the water as it drains from the pump. Make sure the inside of the pipe is free of obstructions that may be clogging the drain, such as dirt and debris. This is critically important after a snow storm hits.Step Two: Fill a five-gallon bucket or large pot with water. Slowly pour the water into the sump pit and watch the water level within the pit.Step Three: The float on the sump should rise and the pump will kick on before the water reaches the top of the pit. As the pit empties, the system should turn off.Step Four: If the float doesn’t rise or the pump doesn’t turn on/off automatically, the pump should be further inspected by a professional.

Always make sure that your unit is plugged into a functioning outlet. In addition to inspecting system performance, homeowners should run through a weekly checklist to observe the following:

Identify any areas around the home that are melting faster than others and whyFind out if your roof gutters run into the ground around your foundationIdentify any puddles in walkways and driveways, and whether or not they disappeared overnightCheck the basement regularly for standing water (at least every other day)

When to Contact a Professional Plumber

It’s not uncommon for a sump pump to stop working altogether when snow is melting. This is because snow usually refreezes at night when the temperatures drop below freezing, causing the sump pump drain pipes to freeze with it. When this happens, the unit is unable to remove the water from your basement. If you’ve tested your sump pump, inspected it for blockages, and are still experiencing issues, it’s best to contact a plumbing technician for additional assistance. You may need a backup system or battery installed, or may have a more serious underlying plumbing problem at play.

Additionally, if your sump pump is older than six years, you’ll likely need to replace the unit ahead of the seasonal thaw. Systems older than six years are more prone to failure, allowing water to collect and wreak havoc on your home.

Len The Plumber for Your Sump Pump Service Needs

Whether your sump pump needs repair, replacement, or routine maintenance, Len The Plumber has the end-to-end sump pump service solutions you need to keep water damage at bay. Allow our team to ensure your home is equipped with the flood prevention system it needs to avoid costly destruction.

Contact us online or call us at (800) 950-4619(800) 950-4619 to schedule sump pump services in your home today!

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Home Plumbing

What You Should Know About Drain Cleaning

If you’ve ever encountered a clogged drain, then you know that things progress from slow-moving drains to an outright clog seemingly overnight. This problem is as frustrating as it is expensive. If you’d like to keep your drains clean, then you should familiarize yourself with the drain cleaning services available to you.

There are certain things you should know when it comes to your home’s drain cleaning services and we’re the team who can help you understand. We’re experts on everything plumbing in Avondale, AZ.

How Clogs Occur

Your plumbing system does a considerable amount of hard work on a daily basis. If even minor things go wrong, it can create a domino effect and cause a clog. Try to avoid the following things to avoid future clogs:

Hard Water: Hard water is typically part of your water system. The problem with this is that it doesn’t stay part of your water system. Eventually, the sediment is going to settle at the bottom of the pipes. It’s important to handle hard water because it can constrict the flow of your home’s plumbing.Inorganic Waste: You don’t want to put things down your garbage disposal that aren’t food scraps, and you don’t want to put things down your toilet that aren’t organic waste. If you do, then it’s going to set you up for a fast track to a clog.FOG: FOG stands for fat, oil, and grease. It’s important that you avoid ever putting these substances down your drain. If you do, it’s going to settle, congeal, and become a bigger issue down the line when it causes a clog.

Now that you know that clogs occur, you should familiarize yourself with how we handle clogs.

How Our Team Handles Them

There are two major ways that we can handle a clog. Those two main ways are either with hydro-jetting services or with a motorized drain snake.

A motorized drain snake is a professional version of an auger. Our professionals use a corkscrew motion to dig down into clogs and break them up or remove them. We know that augers are available to you as a homeowner, but it’s not something that we suggest you do on your own. Professional service gives you long-lasting care.

Another way we can handle your clog is via hydro-jetting. Hydro-jetting is when you blast a highly pressurized stream of water into your plumbing system. This gets rid of any hard water deposits or other grime that’s sitting in your drains.

Why You Should Trust an Expert

You should always contact an expert for your plumbing services. You’ll hear us reiterate this often, but it’s because this is truly vital. You need to make sure that you have a service that’s going to address your needs now and keep your plumbing in impeccable shape later.

We have the experts you can trust. We put quality care into all the work we perform. You won’t have to worry about your plumbing care with our team members.

Contact The Trusted Plumber today to schedule an appointment with our professionals.

Home Plumbing

The Low Down on Water Heaters

tankless water heater
Are you thinking about upgrading your water heater? You should take the time to brush up on everything water heater-related. Buying a new water heater is something you do about once a decade. There are many changes that happen in the industry during this downtime. If you want to do it right, then we’re prepared to help you with the process.

We know what it takes to get an excellent water heater in Buckeye, AZ. If you want to have a great option for your home, we’re here to make sure that you get it. We’re here to give you the low down on water heaters today.

What to Consider

Here are a few things you should consider before you buy yourself a new water heater.

The Type of System

There are a few different types of systems you can choose from when you work with our team. Here’s the low down on a few:

Tank Water Heaters: The standard water heaters you’re used to. They’re reliable and more efficient than ever now thanks to advancements in the industry.Tankless Water Heaters: These are the systems you should choose if you’re concerned with home energy efficiency.Hybrid Water Heaters: Hybrid water heaters give you the best of both worlds. You can marry the efficiency of a heat pump water heater with the power of a standard water heater.Heat Pump Water Heaters: Heat pump water heaters use the same technology that heat pumps do. Heat pump water heaters move warmth where you need it rather than generating it. These systems save you energy and money in the process.

The Fuel Source

You can choose either electric or gas water heaters. While we typically recommend gas-powered water heaters, electric-powered ones can do the job as well. Discuss your specific needs with our team members.

Your Efficiency Needs

What are your efficiency needs? If you’ve wanted to save yourself some money on your water or energy bill, then this might be the time to upgrade to a more energy-efficient system. We’re here to consult with you about this.

The Space Available

Do you have the proper space available for the water heater that you want? If you don’t, this should be something that you factor into your purchase. Not every home has the room to house a large, standard water heater, and that’s okay. This might be the push you need to go tankless. We’re prepared to discuss your options and work with you.

Your Home Needs

The size of your house and the amount of people in it affect how your home performs. If you live in a large home that houses five people, you’re going to need more hot water than someone who lives in a small home that only houses two.

We make sure to factor this in and run the right calculations. Our professionals have the experience necessary to factor in your home sizing needs. Make sure you get in touch with our professionals for the proper service.

Contact the Trusted Plumber—the team you can trust for your plumbing services.

Home Plumbing

Answering 4 Common Questions About Hidden Leaks

Leak detection and repair are among the most important services we offer for plumbing in Glendale, AZ. No homeowner wants leaky pipes or fixtures in their house since this wastes water and can lead to mold growth and building damage. Since most of the piping in a house is hidden from sight, locating leaks is difficult and requires plumbers with the right skills and tools.

We’re going to answer four common questions people have about the hidden leaks they may have in their homes. We hope this helps you deal with potential problems and avoid the worst outcomes of leaky plumbing.

1. Is there anything I can do to prevent leaks from starting?

Yes, but you cannot stop all leaks through preventive measures. Unfortunately, one cause of hidden leaks is a type of corrosion that occurs in copper pipes called formicary corrosion. This corrosion leads to pinhole leaks, which are difficult to catch. Formicary corrosion comes from chemicals in the water or in the air of a house, and it’s hard to stop it from happening. The best way to avoid leaks is to have repiping done for the house if the plumbing is old (more than 50 years).

2. Can I locate hidden leaks on my own?

It’s possible—but you won’t be able to locate them with the precision necessary to repair the leaks, nor do you have the equipment and training necessary to excavate the pipe, remove the leaking section, and replace it. You can do detective work to determine that you have hidden leaks by checking the water meter, but once you know about the leaks, it’s best to leave the detection/repair job to licensed professionals. 

3. How much water does one of these leaks waste?

When we talk about something called a pinhole leak, it doesn’t sound intimidating. Yet the cumulative water waste from these leaks can be staggering. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, 10% of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day, with a total for the country of one trillion gallons wasted through leaks a year. As a basic guideline, if a family of four has water use per month in excess of 12,000 gallons, it means there are major leaks. 

4. How do professionals find hidden leaks?

The methods and techniques of leak detection continue to advance with each year, and our plumbers use the best tools and the most up-to-date training. Detection starts with plumbing knowledge to narrow down where leaks are most likely occurring. Once our plumbers have a general sense of the problem and where it’s coming from, they use tools such as acoustic listening discs to hear the sound of water escaping and special thermal scanners that pick up on temperature differences and pressure rises in areas where water is leaving a pipe. Video camera equipment inserted into the plumbing can pinpoint leaks and their size with great precision. 

We have emergency services available to handle your home’s leak problems. If you aren’t sure about hidden leaks in your house, scheduling leak detection is an excellent preventive measure that helps you get ahead of problems.

Trust The Trusted Plumber.

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Home Plumbing

6 Great Things Your Can Do for Your Plumbing

Homeowners don’t often think of “preventive plumbing” for their homes. Usually, the only major planning people do for their plumbing is to avoid pipe freeze during winter. That’s not something we need to worry about here in Arizona. But there are several preventive measures you can take to stop problems, large and small, in the future. We’ll go over six of them below.

1. Schedule routine drain cleaning

This one we often recommend to our customers. Rather than waiting for clogs to start to happen, you can keep them from happening—all around the house. Drain cleaning is great for getting rid of major clogs when they strike, but it’s also a maintenance service. Our plumbers will use the finest tools available to return your home’s drains to “like-new” condition, making it unlikely there will be clogs in the future. This also prevents drain flies, foul odors, and helps the drain pipes last longer. 

2. Arrange for leak detection

You may have leaks around your home that you aren’t aware of… yet. Hidden leaks are a common problem, and they both waste water and eventually cause building damage and mold growth. We advise our customers to schedule professional leak detection every couple of years. If you’ve never had leak detection done, it’s time to check this one off. That way you’ll have leaks addressed before they become major problems.

3. Install an automatic shut-off valve

This is a defense against flooding because of a major plumbing accident, the sort of disaster that might occur when you’re on vacation and which can keep you from relaxing. The shut-off valve works with leak detection devices around the house in key areas where flooding might occur, and when water begins to accumulate they’ll shut off the water main. The valve will also close if there is a sudden drop in water pressure. The newest in shut-off valve technology will even send an alert to your phone regarding the problem.

4. Install a water softener

Your house may not need this one, but many homes in the area do, so we recommend you ask plumbers about the presence of hard water in your home. Hard water does extensive damage to plumbing and can wreck water heaters. A water softener is attached to where the water main enters the home and counteracts the hard water minerals with sodium to “soften” the water. 

5. Have the water heater flushed

You should schedule maintenance for your water heater each year to ensure it works effectively, efficiently, and safely. Your plumbers will be able to tell you when it’s time to flush out the water heater, which will remove silt build-up that will increase energy efficiency and help with the water heater’s longevity. 

6. For an older home, repipe

If your house was built before 1970, it likely has aging pipes in it made from outdated materials. It’s a good idea to consult with our plumbers about the state of your pipes (such as during leak detection) and find out if it’s time to do a partial or full repiping. 

For all your needs for plumbing in Peoria, AZ, we’re the plumbers to call.

Trust The Trusted Plumber with your plumbing in Glendale, AZ and the surrounding areas.