Plumbing problems are a huge hassle for any homeowner. Leaks, clogs, and cold water are just some of the problems that can infuriate anyone expecting their plumbing system to work the way that they expect. And of course, the repairs can be just as much of a pain, since it can cost a good deal of time and money to fix any problems.
Fortunately, it is possible to prevent many of those problems from occurring in the first place with some regular preventative maintenance. These tips will keep your water system in tip-top shape so that you never have to worry about surprise leaks and expensive repairs ever again. There is more information here if you want to know more about your home’s plumbing system and how a professional can help you.
1. Check For Leaks
A small leak can become a big problem if it is not taken care of quickly. A leak can affect anything from your faucets to your toilet to any of the pipes. Aside from wasting a lot of water, these leaks can cause rotting wood, mold growth, and corrosion, which necessitates even more repairs.
You should make sure that your faucets are not leaking by checking if water runs even after the handles have been turned off. You should also check the floor underneath toilets, sinks, and your refrigerator because they could all be a source of leaks. If you cannot fix the problem yourself, then call a plumber to take care of it before the leak goes on for too long or gets any worse.
2. Prevent Clogs From Happening
When a sink or drain gets clogged, it can be more than just a nuisance, it can also cause an increase in pressure, which can put stress on the pipes. The best way to deal with a slow drain is to prevent it from happening in the first place. With kitchen sink drains, you do that by not placing anything in the drain that could cause a blockage. That includes substances like oil, melted butter, or grease because they can coagulate and solidify in the pipes and cause a blockage. You should also avoid putting difficult-to-grind foods like banana peels or potato peels into the garbage disposal.
For the bathroom, place screens over the basin and shower drains to prevent hair from getting into their drains. Try to reduce the use of oily, greasy skin and hair products because they can cling to the pipes. In order to prevent your toilet from backing up, do not use it as a garbage disposal; even if a product like tampons or diapers are labeled as flushable, they can still cause clogs.
3. Keep An Eye On Your Water Heater
If you love a nice warm bath or shower, then you will want to take good care of your water heater, or else you will be stuck taking some eye-opening, goose-bump inducing cold showers for a while. Every few months you should drain about a quarter of the water in the tank to get rid of any sediment or debris. You do this by turning off the cold water supply, attaching a garden hose to the drain valve, and letting the water run into a bucket until the water runs clear.
4. Find Your Shut-Off Valve
If an unexpected leak does occur and you have water spraying all over the place, then you will need to put a stop to that before doing anything else. You do that by locating the main shut-off valve for your water supply. Of course, finding it in the middle of a crisis is not ideal, so you should locate the shut-off valve early on and have the necessary tools nearby so that you can find it and turn it off in an emergency. In addition to the main water supply, you should learn how to shut down the water to individual water-using appliances like washing machines and fridges, as well as sinks and toilets.
5. Do Not Use Commercial Drain Cleaners
You may be tempted to head the store and pick up a bottle of extra-strength drain cleaner whenever you have a clog or a slow drain. However, those drain cleaners contain powerful chemicals that can corrode your pipes and lead to future leaks. When you need to unclog a drain there are many other solutions you can use, such as the following:
- Organic Drain Cleaners – They use all-natural ingredients and will not affect your pipes or cause pollution.
- Homemade Drain Cleaners – You can search online to find drain cleaner recipes that use ingredients that you may already have in your home, or ingredients that are cheap and easy to find.
- Plumbing Snake/Drain Snake/Drain Auger – This device goes by many names but it is just a reusable, intuitive tool that can easily unclog drains.
Keep Your Plumbing System in Top Condition
Any kind of problem with your plumbing system could have a wide range of bad consequences, from general inconvenience to costly repairs. Since you do not want any of that to happen, it is important that you keep your plumbing system in the best possible condition. With some regular maintenance, you will never have to worry about catastrophic leaks, clogged drains, or faulty water heaters again. So make sure to follow these tips so that you never have to put your plumber on speed dial.