If you’re a home owner unfamiliar with plumbing, you’re probably familiar with the experience of being charged an arm and a leg for what seems like a simple plumbing repair. If you’d like to avoid this experience again, read on for some advice and tips on how to fix your own plumbing.
The next time you have a clogged drain, avoid the simple solution of dumping drain-clearing chemicals into the pipes. While this method involves the least amount of effort, the chemicals in these liquid cleaners are destructive to your piping. Instead, consider using a little bit of elbow grease with a plunger, snake, or other device designed to clear your clog without chemicals.
When it gets very cold, your pipes may freeze. If it does, relieve the pressure in the pipe by turning on the tap so the water can be released as the pipe thaws. This reduces pressure to keep the pipe from bursting, which could prevent a big mess in your home.
Find a better way to discard of cooking oil instead of pouring it down the drain where it can easily clog your pipes. Keep a coffee can or other metal container handy to pour grease into after cooking. Place the can in the freezer to harden the grease and when it’s full, discard it with the trash.
Use strainers in all drains to catch hair and other objects. This will prevent all the material from going down the drain and causing a clog, which can cause a bigger problem down the line. Clean out the strainers daily so that you don’t start getting backup of water in your sink or tub.
Avoid placing fat, grease, and other oils into your drain. These substances will create clogs after cooling in your drain. As an owner of a garbage disposal, this is important because the blades will stop working if they have fat on them. Keep a container in your kitchen that is used specifically for discarded grease.
The key towards maintaining low plumbing repair bills is prevention. One of the most common repairs involves fixing drain clogs. Clogs in drains are often caused by buildups of hair. A drain cover or screen can be used to stop hair from going down the drain and into the pipes. Most objects will not fall through the drain cover, and even hair usually won’t make it through.
If your sewer is backed up, there are things you can do to troubleshoot and clean, including renting equipment like a main line cable. However, often times this does not fully take care of the problem. A professional needs to assess the issue then, using a camera method, and thoroughly cleaning the main line.
Don’t run the water when the garbage disposal is used. It is a common misconception that running water simultaneously is a good idea, but that is not really the case. It could even cause food to stick to the blades of the disposal, creating damage.
Try to limit the amount of hair that goes down your drains. Hair can become tangled up in the pipe and end up blocking up the them, preventing water from flowing smoothly. Buy a cheap screened drain cover to put over your drain to stop any hair from going down and clean it off regularly.
Government agencies can provide information about plumbing contractors. There you can check on their license to see if it is valid, and also if there is any consumer complaints against the contractor. If their credentials are not in order, then you probably don’t want to open the door to them.
Main water cut off valve is a very important piece of information you should be aware of, and you should know exactly where it is. A water meter should be located on or near it. Water fixtures typically have a cut-off valve of their own. Make sure your entire family knows where each shut-off valve is, and provide instructions nearby on which direction to turn the valve in to shut it off.
When you are going to do laundry in your home washing machine, do not use excess detergent, bleach or other chemicals. Too many of these products can cause the natural bacteria in your septic system to be killed. Just use enough of these products in order to get your laundry done.
When leaving on vacation or leaving your vacation home, be sure to turn off the main water before you leave. If something happens while you are gone you can cause some serious damage from a flooded basement or a broken pipe in the wall that leaks for weeks until you return.
Plumbing isn’t as hard as it can seem, when you have access to good information and advice about how to go about solving your own plumbing problems. Next time you have plumbing problems in your house, try applying the tips from this article and see if you can save some money by solving it yourself!