Plumbing For Dummies: Some Top Tips
Plumbing does not have to be as complicated as most people make it out to be. There are some basic things that you need to know about plumbing systems, as well as, having the necessary tools to do your own repairs. This article may have a few useful tips and tricks that you can add to your tool belt.
Rigid copper is used for main water lines in many homes. You cannot bend rigid copper, so joints and tees must be soldered on. When soldering, always apply flux (also called soldering paste) to both surfaces. Flux retards oxidation when the copper is heated. Always use lead-free or nearly lead-free solder when sweating a copper joint.
Before starting any plumbing project be sure to turn off the main water supply. Water damage can be one of the most expensive things to repair. To minimize damage turn the main water supply off as well as any shut-off valves near where you are working. This will save a great deal of hardship later on.
Frozen and bursting pipes from harsh winter weather is a problem that no one wants, so plan now to winterize your exterior faucets and pipes against freezing conditions. A simple way to accomplish this is to find the exterior water shut-off valve located inside your home (often located in the basement). Turn off the water valve to stop water flow, and then open up the outside faucets to drain out any water that has collected. Be sure to turn off the outside water faucets tightly after the water has drained out. Take in any hoses you may have outside so they don’t crack from the cold weather.
To avoid sediment buildup, drain gallons of water from your water heater to flush any corrosion. This will help your heater to run more efficiently, therefore, saving you regular energy costs. Make sure to read your heater’s instructions before attempting this, and do this periodically to make sure that your heater is running as well as it can.
Be sure to clean your dryer’s lint trap. This can save you a lot of trouble, including preventing fires. Be sure to check the trap for tears and rips, because this can cause bigger problems as it may mean that lint is escaping into your pipes.
There are simple ways to check your toilet for leaks that can ultimately lead to great cost savings in the long run. The easiest way to do this is to pour a small amount of food dye into the holding tank of your toilet overnight. In the morning, if you have any color in the basin then you know you have a leak that needs some attention.
Clean-out plugs can be extremely tricky to remove; they tend to stick easily. Here are two ways you can use to deal with a stubborn plug. One way is to make the fitting looser with a hammer and chisel. Your other option to try is to chisel through the out plug.
If you are looking to get new piping in your home, try to stay away from copper ones. Copper tends to have problems, due to water and soil corrosion. It is also harder to install these kinds of pipes. Steel or lead pipes tend to offer the best quality and are the most durable.
Make sure that any exposed pipes in your home are insulated, especially those found in crawl spaces on the outside walls of your home. This will help keep them from freezing and causing you tons of problems. Frozen pipes can often be devastating and leave you with problems that are expensive to fix and no water in the middle of winter.
Using a snake tool to remove blockages is very easy. Just insert the tool a few inches into the drain, and then turn the handle to change the direction of the snake head and search for blockages. Continue moving down slowly and searching until you find the cause of your blockage.
Plumbing can be a very effective skill to have in your tool belt for whatever needs you may have. You may already know the basics and want to know how to save time and money by doing repairs, yourself. No matter your reasons, hopefully, the tips in this article have given you some ideas.