Want to avoid an expensive and inconvenient plumbing disaster? As with most things, prevention is the best protection.
Being a homeowner is not the same as being a homebuilder, so you may not have a complete understanding of how your plumbing works. However, you do know how frustrating a clogged pipe or backed up drain can be. By changing some of your habits, you may be able to prevent the frequency of plumbing problems.
Of course, plumbing problems can’t be avoided entirely. If you’re a homeowner, it’s a good practice to have a plumber you trust, so when the inevitable occurs, you have someone on hand to fix the problem. However, there are a number of things you can do to help maintain your home plumbing and avoid unnecessary breakdowns.
As we have just started a new year, now is the perfect time to make sure your home plumbing is in tip-top shape. Here are four essential tips for maintaining your home plumbing:
1. Monitor the pipes in your home
The first time you really notice your pipes shouldn’t be when they’re spraying water or completely clogged. You can’t prevent a problem if you never see it coming! Familiarize yourself with your plumbing system. Make note of shutoff valves on all your fixtures, because if there’s an unexpected leak you want to be able to shut off water flow quickly.
2. Clean your drains
Obviously, there is no way to keep your drains completely clear of dirt. Regular cleaning will help combat hair and grease build up though. Every month, pour a mixture of baking soda and white vinegar down your drain. After five minutes, run hot water to loosen debris.
3. Flush your hot water heater
To extend the life of your hot water heater, you should flush it every one to three years. This also helps it run more efficiently. Consult the operating manual of your hot water heater for specific instructions, but generally, you turn off the heater and water. Then use a hose to drain the heater until it is free of sediment.
4. Switch to eco-friendly, biodegradable products
If you want to increase the longevity of your plumbing system, switch to eco-friendly, biodegradable products. Everything you use in your home eventually finds its way to your plumbing. Harsh chemicals are not good for your pipes, so it is best to avoid them. Plus, it’s good for the planet!
If you do notice a plumbing problem and you feel uncomfortable about repairing it yourself, you should contact a plumber. One way to ensure that a plumbing problem becomes expensive is to attempt to fix something with the proper experience or equipment. Before attempting any repairs, be sure to get a professional opinion.
By following the above tips, you can help prevent unnecessary problems and defend against costly damages.