The thought of fixing a plumbing problem can seem daunting if you do not know much about plumbing. Professional plumbers usually have a waiting list, and can be extremely expensive for minor repairs that could be taken care of without that much trouble. Read the following article and you’ll be able to take on any simple plumbing problem easily.
If your pipes bang when you turn on the water, and all the pipes are anchored correctly, you should add some straps or cushion the pipes with a rubber blanket. There may be times when you will need to do both. Make sure that if you have copper pipes, you are not using galvanized straps.
To avoid clogs, pay attention to what you flush. Sanitary napkins, thick toilet paper and baby wipes should never be flushed. These items can expand and cause a clog, or get caught on a pipe. Instead, dispose of them in a sanitary way that does not involve flushing them down the toilet.
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.
You need to winter-proof your house. You have to make sure you switch of the master circuit breaker or the shut-off valve before you leave your house. Since one small hole or congested water can quickly freeze and cause pipes to break and expand, you need to drain and open all outdoor and household water lines.
Make sure you clean out overflow holes in your kitchen and bathroom sinks on a regular basis. These holes are intended to act as an emergency fail-safe to prevent spillage from a full sink, but if they are clogged they can’t do their job. You can clean out an overflow hole using the same techniques you would for a clogged 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.
Do not overload your garbage disposal. If you need to dispose of large items, cut them up into smaller pieces. Also, do not put too much in at a time, put one or two items in and wait a few seconds to dispose of the rest. Overloading your disposal can cause the engine to overheat.
Don’t shrug off that trickle coming from your toilet as a small problem. Even the tiniest leak can be quite expensive in the long run as you end up wasting potentially hundreds of gallons of water. See if you can find the root of the leak, or seek out professional advice, and keep your toilet running efficiently.
If your plumbing is making strange noises you may have lost something called your “air cushion”. To turn this back on, you’re going to need to turn off your main water supply. Run all faucets in your house and then turn back on your main water supply. This should make everything sound better again.
If you have problems with a slow drain, there are easier things you can do other than removing the pipes to clean it. There are certain tools made just for this purpose that you insert into the drain to loosen the clog so it washes away or grab it and remove it completely.
If there is grout stuck in your line, it is most likely going to be a lost cause attempting to clean it all yourself. The grout can be broken in order to send it further down the line. Plastic pipes would have better results than metal. Calling a plumber can be expensive but damaging your pipes will cost a lot more.
Cover pipes that are outside or in cool areas. Use heat tape to make sure that the pipes are completely covered and insulated. This will prevent frozen pipes in the winter, which can be an expensive problem. Check outdoor pipes for other problems such as leaks and cracks which are better to catch early.
As you can see, plumbing problems don’t have to be so difficult. If you can solve the problem yourself, you can save time waiting for a plumber, as well as saving a whole lot of money. Try applying what you’ve learned from this article next time you have a plumbing problem!