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.
Group all of your plumbing repairs before scheduling a plumber to come out. Check all of your fixtures and faucets. If anything is dripping, running or clogged, make a list for the plumber. That way, when the plumber comes, they can do all of the jobs in one visit. This will cut down on charges.
Routinely check your appliance connections and faucets around the house for any kind of obvious leaks or nearby signs of moisture. Not only do even the smallest leaks lead to a large waste of water and money, they also can lead to damage to your home or even the development of harmful molds.
Installing shower heads that are more effective can save you a lot on your energy head. Most households use a lot of hot water in the shower. Installing the energy-efficient heads, you will be able to save in excess of $100 per year.
Drain the sediment from the bottom of your hot water heater twice a year to keep the hot water heater working at its optimal levels. Simply open the drain valve and allow the water to run out into a bucket until the water runs clear. Then close the drain valve.
Is your toilet leaking? Find out by putting some food color in the tank and then check the bowl later. If there is colored water in the bowl, the toilet has an internal leak. To fix an internal leak you can simply replace the tank’s ball or flapper.
Do not forget to check the temperature of the water heater in your house, especially if you are planning to leave for an extended period of time. You should keep the temperature no higher than 120 degrees, which will help to reduce energy use and prevent your system from burning out.
If you have plumbing problems caused by grout in the water lines, it is best not to attempt to fix it yourself. You can try breaking it up to have it fall further which will help the flow get better. Plastic pipes, if you have them, will work better than metal. You may eventually have to get a professional to solve this problem.
Frozen pipes can lead to many problems, most of them expensive to fix. So you want to avoid that at all costs. To avoid frozen pipes, make sure the temperature in your home never drops below 55 degrees. Look for any air leaks around your pipes and make sure they’re sealed up.
Look online for reviews of the plumbing contractor you are thinking of hiring. If people are not satisfied with the work that the plumber preforms, many times they will go on the internet and post negative reviews. If they are happy with the plumber they will also post positive reviews.
You should always know where the main water cut-off valve is located on your property. The water meter should be located in its vicinity. Usually toilets, sinks and other fixtures have cut-off valves of their own. Make sure the entire family is familiar with these valves, and mark the shut-off position for ease of use.
When getting plumbing quotes for your home, make sure you receive them in writing. Your quote should have the material and labor costs so that both parties know what to expect from the job. If you do not get it in writing, when the job starts, you have nothing to fall back on.
If you have an automatic sprinkler system, you want to consider getting a spring-loaded timer which can be attached directly to your hose. This prevents your lawn from getting too much water in case you forget to turn your system off. Getting too much water could kill your grass and plants.
If you have an ice maker or other plumbing going to your refrigerator, every six months or so pull the refrigerator away from the wall and inspect this plumbing. There should be no condensation or corrosion on these plumbing lines, if there is, contact a plumber and have them look at it.
A great way to save a few dollars is to add insulation to your hot water heater. Much of the energy required to heat the water in your home is the expense from keeping the water in the tank hot for when it is needed. Adding an extra layer of insulation can help reduce this cost.
When you are deciding to work on a plumbing project yourself, first make a list of all of the tools and items that you could possibly need. After this, make sure that you have all of these things close at hand. There is nothing worse than almost finishing a project, but not having the correct screw.
If you ever put food down the garbage disposer after a meal, make sure that you run cold water for about 15 seconds to help drain the excess debris. This will help in flushing out the excess particles down your drain, which otherwise, can build up and cause a clog, eventually.
Use a shop vacuum to unplug your toilets or drains, if a hard object is clogging it. Using a plunger will only push the object further and make it impossible to remove. If you do not have a shop vacuum, you can rent one from most Walmart stores or from similar franchises.
If you need to locate a pipe under the floor, attach a strong magnet to a solid line coated with fish tape. Flush the magnet or throw it in a drain. Make sure to attach the line to something or to have someone hold it. Use a compass to locate the magnet and the pipe.
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.