Plumbing Tips for Every Homeowner

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A good plumbing system goes a long way in maintaining a good home. For your plumbing system to serve you well, it would be good to have a few tips and tricks up your sleeve. Here are some valuable tips to keep in mind so that you can easily maintain your home’s pipes, plumbing and fixtures.

  1. Plumbing emergencies – Plumbing emergencies such as a burst pipe can do a lot of damage when not contained immediately. At the first sign of a leak, the important thing to know is to immediately cut off the water supply by turning off the water valve. Every water fixture normally has a water valve under it to control that fixture’s water supply. There’s also a primary valve which supplies the water to the entire home, and the main valve located at the meter. Turning this off requires a meter key. Practice turning them off with other members of your household. Make sure these shut-offs are properly labeled for easy access when the need arises.
  2. Fixing leaky faucets – Leaky faucets are a common household problem. Sometimes, the faucet base comes a little loose and tightening the base with a wrench does the trick. If it doesn’t, the washer may need replacing. This is available in hardware stores. If this still doesn’t repair the fix, maybe it’s time to get a new faucet. They’re also available at hardware stores and come with simple and easy to follow installation kits.
  3. Unclogging plugged toilets – Always keep a plunger on hand. Wait a little for the water level in the toilet to subside, then use the plunger firmly but carefully, then flush afterwards. Be ready with old towels to clean up overflows. It may take a few times of plunging and flushing before the clog completely disappears.
  4. Running toilets – Running toilets are caused by flappers that no longer work properly. The flapper is that rubber part that seals off the drain hole in your toilet tank. When the flapper wears out, the water trickles out of the tank and causes the water valve to refill it constantly. To fix this, simply remove the flapper and get an identical one at the hardware store. It will usually take you only a few dollars and a few minutes to repair runny toilets. If, after replacing the flapper your toilet still runs, you may need to replace the entire flush valve. You can also get a complete flush valve kit at your local hardware store.
  5. Clogged drains – Clogged sinks or tubs are another common household problem. Often, chemicals can be used to clear blocked drains in an instant. But if there is no accumulated water in your tub or sink, a simple solution using readily available household items can do the trick. Just get some baking soda, vinegar, and boiling water. Pour these one at a time over the problematic drain, first the baking soda followed by vinegar and boiling water. If there are objects clogging the drain such as hair and dirt, you may have to use special tools to remove these, too.

These are just some of the most common plumbing problems you will encounter in your home. Knowing how to troubleshoot them will save you trouble from further damage and expenses. However, you should also know when to call a professional plumber for help.



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