Indoor plumbing is something that homeowners take for granted until something goes wrong. And when you do need to call a plumber, it always seems to happen late at night, super early in the morning, or when you had other plans (like a vacation or a day off). A home’s plumbing is a delicate system, and it requires delicate actions to make sure it runs right as rain.
In order to keep your plumbing in tip top shape, here are some plumbing tips and tricks your plumber doesn’t want you to know.
Grease shouldn’t go down the drain
Grease is one of the biggest culprits behind clogs in your sink. It may be easy to believe that the water just washes the grease down to the sewer, but in reality, oil and water don’t mix. Warm water can temporarily melt the grease, but as soon as that water washes away, the grease starts to harden to whatever surface it is on. So keep grease of any kind — think meat fat, olive oil, even melted butter — away from your sink.
Turn on your tap when it gets cold outside
It is easy to forget about your pipes when it gets too cold, but unfortunately this is the time they are the most vulnerable. According to 5-Star Plumbing ,a sudden drop in temperature can cause frozen pipes, meaning you’ll want to make it your goal to keep a constant stream of water flowing through them at all times. Turning the tap on to a small drip is all you need to ensure a pipe doesn’t burst on you on the coldest days.
Try not to stuff your cabinets
The curved pipes underneath your sink are known as drain traps. Their whole purpose is to prevent harmful sewer gases from entering your home while letting waste water run away. However, this can be comprised if you stuff the cabinet underneath your sink. Clutter can easily loosen the drain trap’s screw on joints, which can let those gases into your home without you even knowing.
A loose toilet handle is not a big problem
You may think that a loose toilet handle is a sign of a bigger problem, but this isn’t true. A loose handle just shows that the toilet flap valve needs to be replaced. Luckily this is a quick fix and it may even be something you can do it yourself at home.
Do not overuse your garbage disposal
A garbage disposal is not a trash can. Do not overuse it as such, as that is a surefire way to cause a clog or a severe problem with your pipes. Garbage disposals are not meant to handle large amounts of food, and they especially cannot break down fibrous foods such as celery or onions.
A lemon won’t clean your drain
Pipes are made of metal, and require heavy duty chemical cleaners. Using a lemon and some ice cubes can seem to be an easy fix to clean the drain and make it smell fresh, but it really does nothing in the long run. A plumber in Orange County recommends that you simply use cleanser specially marked to clean drains and it will bust through smells as well.
Water around your toilet is never a good sign
Even if it is just a little amount, water pooling around your toilet could be a sign of a faulty wax ring. A wax ring keeps the floor and the walls around the toilet dry, and if it is compromised, you may have to deal with mold and even structural problems if it goes too far without being fixed. The minute you notice standing water around your toilet, contact a plumber right away.
With these hacks in mind, you will be on your way to having a healthy plumbing system in your home.