Plumbing problems can be expensive for Utah families and, fortunately, the most common ones are preventable. While professional plumbing and drain cleaning services are still a necessity, problems such as leaky faucets, burst pipes, and clogged drains can generally be avoided with a little planning and preventive maintenance.
Here are seven steps you can take to prevent plumbing problems in your home.
Know Where the Water Shutoff Valves Are
When plumbing problems do occur, they can be made exponentially worse by ignoring them or not knowing about emergency procedures. It’s important that everyone in your home knows the location of your water shutoff valves and how to use them.
The main valve controls the entire water supply to your home and should be used when the source of a leak is unknown. Other valves can shut off the water to just one section of the home while you repair the damage.
Watch What Goes Down the Drain
Some things just aren’t meant to go down the drain. Did you know that one of the single busiest days of the year for residential plumbers is the day after Thanksgiving? Things that shouldn’t go down your drain include bones, gristle, potato peels, stringy vegetables, and especially grease. If you’re having trouble with your drains, it’s important to take action early.
Use Drain Screens
Drain screens over bathtub and shower drains are some of the most effective and low-cost tools to prevent clogs. They keep hair, chunks of soap, and other debris from entering your drain system.
Use Drain Cleaners With Caution
There is a tendency to make liberal use of conventional drain cleaners when there is a plumbing problem. This could be a mistake as these are dangerous products as many of them contain toxic chemicals. Don’t use drain cleaners on completely clogged drains and be sure to read instructions carefully for safe use.
Be Careful What Goes in the Toilet
Toilets are for human waste and toilet paper only, nothing else. Items that will cause you unneeded heartache and a call to the plumber include paper towels, diapers, hair, feminine hygiene products, and cat litter.
Garbage Disposal Safety
While garbage disposals are modern wonders and meant to make life easier in the kitchen, they can also be a safety hazard. Be sure that the switch isn’t in a location where the unit can be accidentally activated and consider installing a batch-feed model if you have children.
Water Heater Maintenance
When water heaters fail, they can be both expensive and dangerous. Periodically check the temperature of your water heater to ensure that it stays in the proper range (usually between 120 and 140 degrees). Learn what you can do keep your water heater running optimally and hire a plumber or Utah heating and air-conditioning service to check that the room is properly ventilated and that the venting on the unit is correct.
As you implement these preventative measures, your chances of a plumbing issue will go down. Be sure to continue with regular plumbing maintenance so that your home and its fixtures continues to run smoothly.