Keep Your Pipes Running With These Plumbing Tips
Many of us have no idea how plumbing works. Knowing a few simple tips and tricks can help you keep your money in your hands and not that of a plumber. Sometimes, it is necessary to call up a plumber, but by following a few words of advice, you can take preemptive action and stop a problem before it starts.
Act quickly if your pipes freeze! Shut off the water and open the faucet, enabling it to drain when it thaws. Starting with the faucet, and working your way to the iced-up area, aim a propane torch or hairdryer at the pipe – this will quickly defrost it. You could also wrap the pipe in a heating pad or aim a heat lamp at it, but this will take quite some time. A last resort is to wrap the pipe in rags and pour boiling water over it.
If your toilet is slow to flush, add some white vinegar to the overflow tube. White vinegar helps the water from your tank to flow quickly, which will make the toilet flush faster. It is recommended that you use about a quart of the vinegar and let it stay there for at least an hour before flushing.
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.
You can check your toilet for leaks by adding a few drops of food coloring, Kool Aid or some coffee grounds to the water in the toilet’s tank (not the water in the bowl). Check the water in the bowl after a half hour or so. If any of the coloring agent is visible in the water in the bowl, the tank is leaking, and you will have to have it repaired.
Orange or pink discoloration on your bathroom fixtures is a solid indication that your water contains too much iron. A water softener can cure this problem and can be installed by you, or you may opt to have a professional to come and install it for you.
Keep your dryer’s lint trap clean. This is preventative maintenance that will prevent many problems, including fires. Always check your lint trap for damage, such as holes or tears. This could allow lint to enter your pipes, leading to clogs or other plumbing complications.
Before the cold season hits, check out the condition of your gutters on the roof of your house. Remove all debris, leaves and branches so that you can have a smooth flow of water and easy drainage. Caretaking in advance will help to prevent serious issues with plumbing down the road.
Frozen pipes can lead to many problems, most of them expensive to fix. So you want to avoid that at all costs. To avoid frozen pipes, make sure the temperature in your home never drops below 55 degrees. Look for any air leaks around your pipes and make sure they’re sealed up.
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.
Regular maintenance of your plumbing lines is a great idea. Your options are getting your lines snaked or jetted. Jetted is a technology that is proven more effective than snaking is. It gets deeper and cleans harder. So jetting is a good idea next time you are having maintenance performed on your lines.
Work with plumbers that offer flat rates. When a plumber is charging by the hour, they do not have an incentive to get the job done quickly. It is human nature to go just a little bit slower if it’ll mean extra money in our pockets. If you cannot find someone who charges per project make sure that you are vigilant in watching the clock and their work.
To get the best possible price from a plumber, shop around and keep notes. When you get a price quote from the first plumber you call, you can subtly mention that price to the second and see if they will beat it. If you keep doing this down a list, you can drive down the price considerably.
Hopefully this article helped you learn a little bit more about your plumbing and how to stop issues before they start. By learning and knowing, like was discussed in this article, you can be sure to save a few dollars every year. Plumbing disasters can cost a lot of money, so use this advice well!