It is common for all of us to have plumbing concerns and questions. We all want to learn how to maintain plumbing systems and fix problems. Read on to learn the answers to these questions so that you can handle plumbing problems yourself.
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.
Group all of your plumbing repairs before scheduling a plumber to come out. Check all of your fixtures and faucets. If anything is dripping, running or clogged, make a list for the plumber. That way, when the plumber comes, they can do all of the jobs in one visit. This will cut down on charges.
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.
Always keep your garbage disposal clean. You can do this in many ways. Pour some dish soap in and let the disposal run for a few minutes with some cold water. Be sure to run it regularly, if not, it can cause rust. To eliminate foul odors, grind lemon or other citrus peels. You can clean the walls of the disposal by grinding small fruit pits or egg shells.
Make sure you get a good recommendation or check the references before you hire a plumber. With good recommendations, it will assure that you are hiring an experienced plumber. If the experienced plumber is professional, he will have a fully stocked truck and be able to complete most small jobs in one visit.
Find out the plumbing codes in your local area before starting any project. Plumbing codes can vary wildly from area to area and you don’t want to run afoul of the codes. Visit your local building department to find out information or hire a plumber for a day to help you go over your plans and provide advice.
Before embarking on a plumbing project, make sure that you’re aware of where the shutoff valve for water in your home is, as well as the valves for shutting off individual structures like sinks, toilets, etc. This way, if something goes wrong, you’ll be able to stop the water flow.
When chilly weather approaches, it is time to disconnect your water hoses from your outside faucets. If you forget to do this, water in the hoses can freeze and expand. This can cause the faucets and the connecting pipes inside your house to freeze and break. By simply rolling up your garden hoses and storing them for the winter, you can help prevent costly plumbing repairs.
When you’re going away on a vacation, you should consider shutting off the water supply to your home. This can help stop many problems before they start. If you don’t do this, you should have someone stop by your house regularly to check that nothing has gone wrong and that your home isn’t flooded.
To protect your money from unsavory plumbers, always get a written estimate before paying a cent or committing to a project. Good businessmen know to under-promise and over-deliver to savvy customers. Once a stated number is given, it is highly unlikely that your plumber will exceed the projected costs of the project.
One of the ways that you can improve the functionality of your shower head is to clean the mineral deposits from the surface. Unscrew your shower head and soak it in vinegar overnight. In the morning, brush off the deposits with a toothbrush to help the flow of water for your showers.
When looking for a plumber, you have quite a few options. Ask friends for recommendations of who they use. Check online for plumbers with good reviews and references. Use your yellow pages and look under “Plumbing Contractors” or “Plumbing, Drain and Sewer Cleaning”. Make sure that you contact more than one plumber before making a choice.
If you have an underground leak in your pipes, it is possible to detect the leak before digging. Today’s leak detection equipment is very sophisticated and modern, allowing technicians to detect and pinpoint exactly where leaks are before they go about trying to fix them with professional grade equipment for you.
Learning about these problems can save a lot of headache down the road. If you keep an eye on your plumbing system regularly, you’ll notice issues before they become major concerns. Keep these tips handy so you’ll be prepared for any future plumbing need.