You've done it. You're ready to handle your home's plumbing maintenance and repair. What perfect timing! You probably have tons of questions on how to start and what to do, but fear not, this article can help you. Listed below are some tips that will help you get started with your plumbing aspirations.
If you are paying someone else to do the plumbing in your home be sure that they are licensed in your state to do that work. Some people who have little or no knowledge of plumbing will try to pass themselves off as a pro. So you can see the importance of checking to see if your plumber is licensed. You should also see if you can find positive testimonials about the plumbers work.
As the weather begins to get cold, attend to all of your exposed pipes by adding insulation to them. Pay particular attention to pipes located in crawl spaces and the outside walls of your residence. Taking this step will help ensure that your pipes continue to function throughout the winter.
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.
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Pump your septic tank about once every five years, to make sure it is working well. This will keep sediment from building and causing backup into the house, and possibly causing the septic system to fail. Pumping a septic tank might cost a lot of money, but it will cost your more money to clean any back up in sewage you may have had, and replacing your septic tank costs even more!!
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.
Avoid the use of products for your toilet that help with odor, such as bleach tablets. These may deodorize, but they can seriously damage the rubber pieces in the toilet, causing poor functionality or even complete breakdown of the fixture.
Taking preemptive action to fix a strange smelling kitchen sink can be a good way to keep your kitchen smelling great. Make sure not to throw hair or grease into your sink. Use baking soda if you have a strange smell coming from your drain. Make sure you use your garbage disposal if you have one to grind up any food and use water while doing this to prevent damage to the blades of the garbage disposal.
If water is not coming to the dishwasher, you most likely have a blockage somewhere. You will need to turn off the water supply and remove the hose that leads to the dishwasher. After securing the hose, turn the water back on. See if it feeds into a bowl. If not, then you must find the block where it is at which may include removing more piping.
Do not forget to check the temperature of the water heater in your house, especially if you are planning to leave for an extended period of time. You should keep the temperature no higher than 120 degrees, which will help to reduce energy use and prevent your system from burning out.
If you are trying to decide on the material to use for your hose, stick with stainless steel. Stainless steel has a very solid construction and stays durable for many years, eliminating the need for replacement. Also, this material is less prone to bursting, which can yield severe plumbing issues.
During the week, hair and soap can build up in your drains and can cause serious clogs. Make sure that you have strainers in each of your drains to help catch this debris so that it does not become an issue. This will help to keep your water flowing efficiently.
When getting an estimate from a contractor on a job, make sure to ask how long the written estimate is good for. For big jobs you usually want to get estimates from a few different plumbers. Knowing how long your estimate is valid will help you know what your time limit is for making a decision on who to hire.
If water is flowing out from where your meter is located, a professional is required to come out and fix the leak. If your water bill goes up, this is most likely because the leak is on the house side of the water meter. You will need to get a professional to come out and fix the leak.
You should try using a plumbing snake or plumber to unclog a clog. Liquid cleaners that are meant to unclog the clogs in a drain could ruin the pipes. You should also use strainers to catch hair so that it doesn't go down the drain and get clumped and clog your drain.
You can save money on a plumber by using a power auger yourself to clear a clogged toilet line. Check with local home improvement stores or other venues where you can rent power tools. You may be able to rent an auger yourself for a fraction of the cost of hiring a plumber, although you will have to be able to remove and reset your toilet yourself if you do not have a main line cleanout.
Now you should be much more prepared when it comes to plumbing. If you thought that you were ready before, well you should now be an expert! The tips that were given should have provided you some advice that can help you get started with maintaining and fixing your own plumbing.