Are you in the “Fix Your Own Plumbing” Mindset?
Once again your toilet it clogged, and this time it’s your entire fault. Here are some tips on how future clogs, floods or breakdowns can be avoided.
1. Drano – Don’t Do It
Plumbing isn’t made for chemicals. Don’t use chemicals to open or clear drains-they rarely get the job all the way done. Harsh chemicals are not only dangerous for you to handle, they can damage your pipes and other equipment used to unclog the blockage. Hint: If you want to stay away from this kind of issue in the first place, make sure to keep common cloggers like grease and hair out of drains.
2. Your toilet is a like a backup garbage can.
Many of your household items such as feminine hygiene products, hygiene wipes, toilet scrubbers, make-up remover pads or cat litter may be labeled “flushable” but in reality they aren’t. They don’t break down quickly enough to avoid blocking the drainpipe.
3. The “Do-It-Yourselfer”
The best route making sure a plumbing problem gets fixed is hiring a licensed plumber. They can find and correct a problem more efficiently than an amateur can, which will save you money in the long run. Don’t try to diagnose and fix a plumbing problem yourself, or hire a handyman to do your plumbing work without expecting a headache and spending unnecessary money.
4. You have no idea where the main water valve is located.
It is important to know where the main water valve and every emergency shut off valve are located within your house. What will help out even more is if you know how to turn off these valves. Most plumbers will check emergency shut-off valves at no charge if you’re not comfortable with doing it yourself.
5. You use drop in toilet tablets.
Drop in toilet fresheners may seem harmless but they often contain chemicals that can damage the parts inside the tank. Another issue is that as they start to dissolve, they can get stuck in the flush valve, preventing the toilet from flushing.
6. You forget to replace the hoses.
It is important to replace rubber hoses on washing machines and dishwashers every five years to avoid them bursting. It is best to use stainless steel on all water lines when replacing the hoses.
7. You don’t have a leak protection system.
Leaks can turn ugly fast. For only a few hundred dollars avoid water damage and purchase a water leak protection system that offers both an alarm and main water shut-off in case a leak occurs.
8. Your Hot Water Heater is outdated.
The average lifespan of a hot water heater is 8-12 years. Avoid having to deal with your 20-year-old tank failing, causing a flood in your home while you are on vacation.
9. You overload the garbage disposal.
Yes, your garbage disposal may be able to handle large amounts of garbage at once, but the effects are damaging. Make sure to slowly feed garbage into your disposal while running cold water. Fibrous food such as celery and artichokes can be hard on your garbage disposal, as sometimes they are so densely chopped up that the remains can build up around the blades of the garbage disposal. Grease is also another definite no-no for your garbage disposal as it can solidify and clog the drain.
10. You mess with the water heater’s pressure valve.
Don’t be a do-it-yourselfer when it comes to draining your water heater or testing the temperature and pressure valve. If the valve is removed improperly, the pressure from the tank can diffuse scalding hot water that could cause serious burns as well as property damage. Avoid the damage and stress and hire a professional.
When in doubt, call the Plumber! You can reach Carter’s My Plumber at (317) 859-9999.