Good plumbing maintenance is relatively easy, but failing to keep up with it can mean costly repairs. Here are some good ways you can take care of your plumbing, either yourself or with the help of a licensed professional. Take care of your house now and it will beneift you in the future.
Don’t pay a plumber until the job is completed. A plumber may require some money upfront, but it’s wise to wait until the job is completely done before giving him the entire payment. Many things can happen between the stop and end of a job, so to be safe wait until you are satisfied with the completed work before paying.
To winterize a house that will sit unused during the winter months, you must completely drain all of the pipes. After turning off the main water supply, let all of the water drain from the faucets, toilets, and water heater (turn off the gas). Add a quart of antifreeze to sinks and the tub to prevent water from freezing in the drain trap.
Position a strainer over all drains to collect any particles that would otherwise go down the drain and possibly cause a stoppage. Your kitchen sink strainer must be cleaned whenever it catches anything. You should also clean your bathtub strainer any time it is slow to drain.
There are many ways to unclog a drain. You can try plunging it at first. If that doesn’t work try using a chemical agent from the store. Before you go and spend money at the store though, if you have baking soda and some vinegar handy, you can mix those together and pour them in the drain and try to plunge that but if all else fails they have stronger remedies at your local hardware store.
Don’t throw trash down your toilet. Doing so can clog the drain and cause plumbing problems. If you flush improper items such as disposable diapers, facial tissue, cotton balls, paper toweling, tampons or sanitary napkins down the toilet, you will surely have problems with clogs. In addition, you should only use the amount of toilet paper that is absolutely necessary when cleaning yourself.
Keep an eye on the hoses for your dishwasher and washing machine. These hoses can leak and bulge, which can be a problem. Check them for signs of wear and tear and replace any hoses more than 10 years old. You’ll find that these hoses age well, but you have got to make sure they are doing the job they should.
Stop cleaning a persistent clog with harsh drain cleaners. Their chemicals are extremely corrosive, and they may damage your pipes if used too often. If you discover that you have a blocked drain, the best course of action is to hire a professional to call by and examine it for you.
To be able to get a good plumber you can be comfortable with, remember which of your friends are actual home owners and not renting. At some point, every home owner has had to call in a plumber. They can give you a good personal reference they had a positive experience with.
Teach your children how to notice plumbing problems. Many parents handle plumbing issues without sharing that information with their children, who grow up not knowing anything about plumbing. Any time you make a small repair or notice a problem, call your kids in and explain what the problem is and what you are going to do. Educate them so they can make good decisions in the future.
Because plumbing is a mysterious and hidden field to a lot of homeowners, they are willing to take any claim and any bill from a plumber at face value, no matter how ridiculous it is. Learn some plumbing basics so that you’ll understand what the plumber needs to do to resolve problems in your home. If you’re armed with knowledge, you’re much less likely to be ripped off.
As mentioned above, most periodic plumbing maintenance is simple and straightforward. Most repairs resulting from serious damage to your plumbing are not. Now that you know how to deal with the plubming issues in your home, you should be more prepared to prevent or mitigate the more serious problems that can result.