Your household plumbing is one of the key elements to the comfort and function of your home. This means it’s imperative that everything plumbing-related operates smoothly and properly. Basic plumbing home maintenance throughout the year will help to keep your pipes and drains in top shape. Keep reading to learn about some of the most important ways to maintain your plumbing right at home:
Plumbing in the Kitchen
Drains and dishwashers tend to create the biggest plumbing problems in the kitchen. Avoid unnecessary wear and tear by refraining from putting cooking oil, fats, butter, pasta, and rice down the kitchen sink.
The next major issue in kitchens is the garbage disposal. While this is a common kitchen feature in Tucson, a lot of homeowners still don’t understand how to properly use their disposal. You should always run the water before adding food, avoid putting fibrous or stringy food in the disposal, and run the water after you finish using the disposal for at least 15 seconds.
With every use, pay attention to the handles and valves of your sink to make sure water isn’t leaking. Although we live in the desert, it’s still important to insulate your pipes before winter and freezing temperatures. Occasionally check under the sink for signs of leaks and cracks. If you see a problem, contact a home plumbing service such as the team at Ram Plumbing.
As is the case with the kitchen, your drains are the biggest source of potential plumbing problems in the bathroom. Hair and oils from toiletries can clog bathroom drains, so it’s best to place screens over the drains to keep hair and other items out.
Even though many people make the mistake of using the toilet much like a trash can, there are many items that should not be flushed. Place all items like baby wipes, feminine products, diapers, dental floss, and kitty litter in the garbage and not down the toilet—even if the label says it’s okay to flush. These items can cause clogs and issues very easily. You should also avoid using chemical drain cleaners to try and remove clogs and clear drains, as they can actually damage your pipes.
Outdoor Pipes and Plumbing
Your outdoor plumbing has many of the same concerns as your indoor system. Regularly check your spigots to make sure they aren’t leaking. Water should come from the spigot itself only—and only when turned on. Even a small drip can signal a much bigger problem.
Protect your outdoor drains. There’s a lot of dirt and debris that can go down your outdoor drains, so your goal should be to minimize that as much as possible. Place shields on your drains if you don’t have them in place already and replace them if they become damaged.
In cold weather, disconnect your hoses and sprinkler system and store them appropriately. Shut off the water to the outdoor spigots and drain the water lines. When temperatures drop below freezing, it’s also important to leave water at a “drip,” so that it’s moving slowly through the lines which prevents pipes from freezing and bursting. Although Tucson has mild weather compared to much of the country, freezing weather and busted pipes are still very much a reality.
The water heater gifts your home with blissfully hot water. To keep it working well, ensure the water temperature is set to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Once or twice a year, flush out your water heater so that all sediment inside is removed. This eliminates corrosion and increases the life of your water heater, which keeps your showers nice and hot.
Once a year, hire a professional to clean and inspect the sump pump to make sure that everything is looking good. This is best done before the cold season hits. Regular maintenance ensures the sump pump continues working optimally and saves you from the possibility of an expensive flood.
Once or twice a year, check to see if there are any plumbing leaks in your home. The easiest way to do this is through your water meter. First, write down the current reading on your meter, then avoid using your water for two to three hours. Then, check the reading again. If it changed, you have a leak. To locate that leak, contacting an Arizona plumbing service.
Maintaining your septic system requires a professional touch. There’s a lot that can go wrong with septic systems, and your health may be at risk if it does. Have a plumber come out to inspect it and clear the septic line. If needed, get it pumped.
Your shutoff valve turns off the water to your entire home, which is important in case you ever have a flood or a pipe bursts. Several times a year, make sure you can move your shutoff valve with ease. Any problems must be addressed immediately to avoid a plumbing disaster.
Ram Plumbing is always here to help you maintain your best plumbing at home. Whether you’re doing a yearly inspection, have a leak, or a bigger plumbing issue, our knowledgeable team is here to keep your pipes running smoothly. Visit our website or call (520) 747-8089 to schedule a visit.