We know the health of your home water piping system isn’t the first thing on your mind when you wake up in the morning, or the last thing you think of when you lay your head down to go to sleep. But trust us when we say it will be on the forefront of your thoughts if something goes wrong. So rather than waiting until that happens, let’s go over some precautions you can take to ensure you are following the best plumbing practices. These essential cleaning tips will keep your plumbing system healthy and clean. Most importantly, they will protect you from costly and stressful disasters in the future.
6 Essential Cleaning Tips for your Plumbing:
Make sure there are no leaks in your house
Check faucets and dishwashers for drips, toilets for cracks, washing machines and icemaker supply hoses for bulges. Check any visible pipes. For pipes that you cannot see, the water meter is your best friend. Check it at night, after you are done using the water. In the morning, before using any water, check it again. If the meter reading is different in the morning, then you need to have a professional come and find out where your leaks are.
Check that all drains are working properly
Check the shower drains for hair or built-up soap residue. If any of the drains are working slowly, this means you are in danger of flooding. Use a snake to clear them out. For drains that don’t see a lot of use, pour a gallon of water down to fill the drain and prevent things from coming up them. Don’t forget to check your exterior systems! Gutters and downspouts often get clogged with leaves in the fall time, which can become compacted by rainwater in the winter. If you live in a cold climate, exterior pipes can also freeze and crack, causing leaks.
Check your water heater
Make sure that it is never above 120°F, otherwise you are wasting energy and may burn the body or interior of the heater. If your heater is old, consider having a local plumber take a look to make sure that it does not need to be replaced. And while you’re back there - make sure nothing is in direct contact with the water heater – this could cause a fire.
Replace old hoses
If you have old hoses in your house that are showing any signs of wear or damage, you should consider replacing them. Newer hoses are made of stainless steel, and are much more reliable and last longer, so they are less likely to give you trouble in the future.
Inspect your water tanks
If your toilets are not flushing quickly and with ease, or if you must manually lift the handle to stop the water from running, you may have worn-out pieces in your tank that are causing your plumbing system to waste water. Upgrading to a reliable plumbing system will not only prevent a potential plumbing catastrophe but will also save you money on your water bill.
Invest in Flood Alarms
As a preventive measure, you should consider installing a few flood alarms, especially in areas that are high-risk. These battery-operated devices will sound an alarm if they come into contact with water, warning you of leaks and floods before any permanent damage is done.
Performing due diligence on your home plumbing system may not be the most exciting activity, but it’s an investment! It will save you money, and give you piece of mind. Remember - routine sewer and drain cleaning is much cheaper and less stressful than an emergency plumbing repair