Out of all inventions on the planet, the plumbing system may best one- the one that made our lives much easier and much healthier. But like all human-made systems, proper maintenance and behavior are needed to keep your plumbing working for years to come.
You may not know this, but 90% of plumbing problems happen because we cause them. Whether it’s disposing of wrong things down our garbage disposal or failing at DIY plumbing projects, when we fail to keep our plumbing in the order it can cost us thousands of dollars in repairs. Take a look at some things you can do to avoid making a terrible plumbing mistake:
Unclogging With Chemicals Only
You may believe a fancy commercial or a packaging, but there are some clogs and blockages those liquid drain cleaners can’t solve. Not only will you spend a great amount of money on those cleaners, but they often contain chemicals that can damage your pipes even further.
There are many natural cleaners that you can make to unclog your drains, like those containing vinegar and baking soda. If that doesn’t work, make sure to contact aLocal plumber near you to help you out with this problem.
Flushing the Un-flushable
Now hear us out, and this is very important- the toilet is not a garbage can. Besides liquid and solid waste and the right kind of toilet paper, toilets are just not made to ”swallow” anything else. The problem isn’t with the toilet bowl, but with the pipe that is meant to take all that waste away from your home.
If you flush things like feminine hygiene products, baby wipes, and paper towels, you risk causing clogs that only an experienced plumber with a strong machine can dispose of.
Messing up a DIY project
No matter how much you think you can handle any kind of plumbing problem, think again before doing anything. We know that DIYs are mostly to avoid paying for a plumber whose service can be costly sometimes. But if you mess up a smaller problem by trying to fix it yourselves, in the end, you will have to call a plumber. Only then the cost to repair what was once a small problem, but now it’s quite a big plumbing mishap, will be much, much greater.
Incorrect Grease Disposal
If you know that grease and oils don’t mix with water, why would you hope that you would dispose of them successfully in your sink?
Contrary to popular belief, no amount of water can wash away the grease you pour down your kitchen drain. The grease will only coat the pipes and cool down and being sticky as it is, it will collect all kinds of waste, eventually creating a huge clog.
Using Drop-In Toilet Fresheners
Yes, we understand- drop-in toilet fresheners are much more convenient than those ugly ones attached to the side of the bowl. Once you put them inside your tank you don’t have to worry anymore and can be sure your toilet will smell like pine for a long time.
But those fresheners can also damage the parts inside your pipes because they contain chlorine. When it dissolves it can cause corrosion, after which you will have to pay for the repairs of your toilet tank.
Not Maintaining Your Machines
Whether it’s your washing machine or a dishwasher, once installed, many people simply forget about them. Then suddenly one day, without any warning whatsoever, they just break or burst. This is because of poor maintenance and the one thing you can do is replace the hose once every while to keep your machines last longer.
Garbage Disposal Mistakes
Even your garbage disposal deserves some TLC and proper maintenance. Don’t abuse the garbage disposal just because it’s shredding power. If you dispose of potato peals, for example, the shredded waste will be thick and starchy, perfect for creating those hard-to-get-rid-off clogs. Find a list online of the things you can safely put in your garbage disposal to prevent this plumbing issue from happening.
Not Thinking About the Weather
If you live in an area where temperatures get really low in the winter, you should always keep in mind what that can do to your plumbing. Every faucet and hose left unchecked can freeze and all that ice can cause your pipes to crack. Disconnect the garden hose and turn off the water supply to all outdoor faucets to prevent your pipes and fixtures from freezing.
Overestimating Your Water Heater
No, your water heater will not last forever. As a matter of fact, if you keep proper maintenance, it will last only about 8-12 years. Tankless models may last up to 20 years, but the point is- every water heater has its lifespan.
Not replacing your water heater will not only cause you some major plumbing issues (especially traditional water heaters) but will also cost you a lot of money over the years that you will spend on your energy bill. If your water heater is not performing as it should or is giving away strange noises, think about replacing it with a newer model.