Having plumbing issues and emergencies is extremely disruptive, inconvenient, and costly. However, many plumbing catastrophes are avoided by implementing a proper plumbing maintenance routine. With some simple preventative measures, you keep your plumbing system in good working order and prevent emergency calls.
Know the location of shut off valves
Identifying your water supply shut-off valve is the first step in plumbing prevention. There should be shut-off valves on the main water line and on hot and cold water lines under sinks, behind toilets, and leading to appliances. Locate these valves quickly to shut off the water in an emergency to prevent flooding and water damage. Most plumbing problems involve clogged drains.
Prevent clogged and slow drains by inspecting bathroom and kitchen sink drains weekly. Remove any accumulated hair or debris. Monthly, use a drain cleaner to flush the pipes clean. Check shower drains for hair buildup as well, and use a drain catch to snare strands before they wash down. Walk through your home monthly looking for any drips or leaks around sinks, faucets, under appliances, and near toilets. Drips signal worn washers, pipes, or valves that need repair. Catching leaks early prevents water damage and mold growth. Check under sinks for pooling water that indicates a slow leak.
Flush seldom used faucets
Run all faucets through hot and cold cycles at least once per week, even if seldom used. It flushes out stagnant water and keeps valve seals lubricated. Letting taps sit unused allows mineral deposits to build up. Flushing keeps water fresh and avoids problems. Check exterior water lines leading to outside spigots monthly. Look for cracked or damaged supply lines that could leak or burst. Replace rubber gaskets around spigots if worn. Keep spigots shut off in winter and drained to avoid frozen pipes. Disconnect and drain garden hoses too. Over time, water pressure increases to dangerous levels and stresses plumbing. Test water pressure annually or anytime it seems excessively high. Hardware stores sell inexpensive water pressure testers. Consistently high pressure may require installing a pressure-regulating valve.
Clean faucet aerators
Mineral deposits accumulate in faucet aerators and showerheads, constricting water flow. Every few months, unscrew and remove aerators. Soak them in white vinegar to dissolve minerals and debris. Rinse thoroughly before replacing aerator screens. Avoid jams by running plenty of cold water when using the garbage disposal and by grinding citrus fruit peels to help clean the unit. Don’t put grease down drains. Every 3-6 months, turn on the disposal with ice cubes and baking soda to sharpen and freshen the blades. Call a professional plumber Sutherland Shire immediately for any of the following emergencies:
- Major leaks
- No hot water
- Inadequate water pressure
- Frozen pipes
- Backed up sewer line
- Gas leaks
- Main sewer line clog
Having a plumber inspect your plumbing once a year catches issues before they become huge problems. They assess your pipes, supply lines, shut-off valves, pressure, drains, and more.