How many times per day do you use your home plumbing system? Your pipes, faucets, showerheads, and toilets are the unsung workhorse heroes of the entire house. You rely on them whenever you need to bathe, wash your hands, brew a cup of tea, make a meal, and stay hydrated.
Despite the frequency with which we use it, plumbing that’s in good working order is something that many people take for granted. Until it goes on the fritz, that is. To prevent costly and inconvenient repairs, check out these five maintenance chores that will keep your plumbing humming!
1. Keep Kitchen Drains Fat-Free
Have you ever heard of fatbergs? They are massive, and massively disgusting, blobs that clog up home and municipal sewers alike. Fatbergs are primarily made up of grease and disposable wet wipes but contain other non-biodegradable garbage as well.
As you can imagine, fatbergs wreak havoc with municipal wastewater systems, but they can also cause trouble a little closer to home. The oils congeal in your plumbing pipes, eventually leading to blockages. Rather than pouring cooking grease down the drain, wait until it congeals and then dispose of it in the garbage.
2. Treat Your Toilet Right
Similarly, never treat your toilet like a garbage can. The only things that should be flushed away are human waste and toilet paper. While there are plenty of health and beauty products that are marketed as “flushable,” such as sanitary napkins, tampons, makeup remover pads, and baby wipes, it’s always better to throw them away.
3. Hair Today, Clog Tomorrow
Another major cause of clogged drains in the bathroom is hair. It’s normal for people to lose up to 100 strands of hair per day, and an awful lot of those end up in the shower or tub drain. If you have ever used a plumbing snake to rid your pipes of a clog, you know just how big these hairballs can get.
For just a few dollars, you can get a screen that helps contain hair before it can slip down the drain. Get in the habit of checking the drain area for hair after each shower, too.
4. Don’t Use Drain Cleaner
It’s common for homeowners to use commercial drain cleaner whenever the drain seems even the slightest bit slow. But that’s one of the worst things you can do to your plumbing! Truth is, chemical unclogging products will corrode your pipes over time, leading to a major repair or replacement job.
For major drain issues, call in the pros. For minor ones, use less-corrosive cleaners to clear clogs. A plumbing snake is a good item to have on hand, too.
5. Do a Weekly Leak Check
Untreated leaks, whether from a faucet or in a pipe, can lead to serious damage to the system. Prevent expensive home plumbing repairs by nipping leaks in the bud. It doesn’t take that much time, either.
Set aside a few minutes every weekend, or whenever is most convenient, and do a check of all the plumbing elements in your home. Watch for ordinary drips, but also pay attention to valves and handles. Also be on the lookout for water marks, puddles or excess water, a musty smell, and other signs of leaking.
Take Care of Your Home Plumbing
These maintenance tasks aren’t difficult, and they can truly save you a world of hurt — not to mention a wad of cash! Be mindful of how you use your sinks, showers, toilets, and other home plumbing parts.
When there is an issue that requires more know-how or specialized equipment, give Arrow Plumbing a call!