You need to have some knowledge of what to look for and expect from doing your own plumbing. You need to know what resources are available to you and who can provide you answers as to what you need for your future plumbing jobs. The tips below can help you with how to start.
Make sure everyone that lives in your house knows where to find and use the main water shut off valve in case there is a burst pipe emergency. This is especially important if you live in an area where your pipes may freeze. Take a moment to show your family members where the valve is and how to properly shut it off.
To avoid having your outdoor faucets freeze up in the winter, detach all hoses before the first freeze. Also, close the shutoff valve that leads to the outdoor faucets, then turn on the outdoor faucets to let any remaining water in the lines drain. Once temperatures warm up in the spring, you can reverse the process.
Periodically check your pipes for leaks and cracks. These can be forgotten, since pipes are usually hidden away, but checking for leaks and cracks can help you identify a small problem before a big problem occurs. You may have to enlist the help of a family member to turn on and off the water stream as you are checking.
If your water is coming out black, then most likely you have an iron and magnesium issue to your water. You need to contact a water softener company, and get them to come out and assess your water. They will be able to fix the problem by adding a water softener.
If your home operates on well water and you notice pink or orange stains in your bathtub and other fixtures, this is no doubt due to iron in the water. A water softener can filter out unnecessary minerals, and leave you with clean, usable water.
To make sure your garbage disposal last a long time, clean it regularly. By regularly using a mixture of dish soap, cherry pits and citrus rinds, you can ensure that your disposal runs smoothly and smells as fresh as one that is brand new.
If water is not coming to the dishwasher, you most likely have a blockage somewhere. You will need to turn off the water supply and remove the hose that leads to the dishwasher. After securing the hose, turn the water back on. See if it feeds into a bowl. If not, then you must find the block where it is at which may include removing more piping.
Set the temperature on your hot water heater to a temperature that does not exceed 120 degrees. This helps to save energy and prevents the water from becoming too hot and potentially scalding someone in your household. Older models that do not have a temperature setting should be set on Medium.
If water backs up from one sink to another, it is because the lines are connected. The part of the branch line for one device might be higher than another, but most likely there is also a blockage in the branch line connecting the two devices as well. This blockage must be cleaned.
If you are looking to get new piping in your home, try to stay away from copper ones. Copper tends to have problems, due to water and soil corrosion. It is also harder to install these kinds of pipes. Steel or lead pipes tend to offer the best quality and are the most durable.
To protect your money from unsavory plumbers, always get a written estimate before paying a cent or committing to a project. Good businessmen know to under-promise and over-deliver to savvy customers. Once a stated number is given, it is highly unlikely that your plumber will exceed the projected costs of the project.
Call different plumbers before choosing one. Plumbing prices among professionals are not uniform. Before you hire someone to fix a major problem, call two or three other plumbers to see what their prices are like. This can be difficult if you have a major plumbing problem that you need solved right away, but will save you money in the end.
The key to finding a great plumber for new construction is to look at their prior jobs. Good plumbers take pride in the work they do, so they will have photos and references from previous jobs. If the plumber you are considering hiring does not have references or photos of previous jobs, then stay away and find another.
Use a foaming root killer, twice yearly, to remove tree roots that can bring your drains to a standstill. Foaming products fill the entire pipe with chemicals, killing roots that grow from the top of the pipe as well as the part that water flows through. They are more effective than regular root killers for this reason.
If you live in an environment where winters get cold, it is crucial that you prepare your pipes for the winter. Leaving pipes as is can cause them to freeze which can create severe plumbing issues. Have your faucet open a little bit when it is really cold to prevent frozen pipes.
If your washing machine drain overflows, try using a run of the mill pipe snake in it. Lint can build up in the washing machine and cause a clog, which will lead to overflowing.
Is your shower pressure weak due to clogging of the openings in your shower head? Here is a simple and cost-effective tip to take care of that problem. Pour a cup of vinegar into a plastic bag, place it over the shower head, and twist tie it into place so it can soak overnight. In the morning, remove the plastic bag and use an old toothbrush to scrub off the mineral deposits which are clogging the openings. This will help to restore water flow and increase shower pressure.
As you have seen in the above tips, there is a lot of knowledge you can acquire before starting to do your own plumbing and it’s this knowledge that can help you with your future plumbing jobs. Do everything you must to find out what you need to get started.
How To Do Your Own Minor Plumbing Work
Taking a step into the wondrous and complex land of plumbing for the very first time might feel a bit daunting. However, by keeping the helpful tips listed below in mind, you will soon find yourself plumbing on par with some of the best plumbers in the field and maintaining your own easily.
If you are paying someone else to do the plumbing in your home be sure that they are licensed in your state to do that work. Some people who have little or no knowledge of plumbing will try to pass themselves off as a pro. So you can see the importance of checking to see if your plumber is licensed. You should also see if you can find positive testimonials about the plumbers work.
If your pipes are prone to freezing, let the water trickle continuously in at least one faucet during weather that is below freezing. This will minimize the chances that the pipes will freeze and leave you without water. If water is continually running through the pipes and trickling out of a faucet, the pipes are less likely to freeze.
To prevent the pipes from freezing, it is advisable to seal off air vents, cracks and access doors. In order to keep the heat in and the cold out, you can try using insulation or caulk. In the event a leak occurs, make it a point to remind everyone where the master circuit breaker is so it can be shut off immediately.
Knowing which tools to use and how you should use them is an important skill when it comes to plumbing. Use as many resources as you need, such as online or the library, to find the right information to repair your plumbing issues. Have everything you need by way of tools and information before you attempt a repair on your own.
Unclog drains with ease. Try using a plunger and drain cleaner, as your clog may simply be a build-up of hair and debris. If this doesn’t work you may have to clear the drain with a snake. Feed the snake into the drain line as far as it will go. Turn the crank gently, which will help to loosen the clog. Remove the snake, and run water down the drain to see if the clog has been removed. You may have to use the snake a couple of times, before the clog is cleared so don’t give up!
Make sure overflow holes are cleaned out. This can help to prevent any water damage. Overflow holes are a way to stop water from overflowing if a sink is left on by accident. If the overflow hole is clogged it will not be able to do its job.
An incorrectly installed hose from the kitchen sink to the dishwasher can cause unwanted water to drain into the dishwasher. The hose connecting the sink the the dishwasher should be at an uphill angle and then downhill to prevent the water from mixing.
Drain the sediment from the bottom of your hot water heater twice a year to keep the hot water heater working at its optimal levels. Simply open the drain valve and allow the water to run out into a bucket until the water runs clear. Then close the drain valve.
Prevention will save you money in plumbing bills. The repairs that plumbers perform the most are for drains that are clogged. One major thing that causes clots is grease. It builds up over and time. You can help prevent grease build up by looking for a product on the market that will clean the grease out.
Avoid using harsh chemicals to clear clogged drains by purchasing a hand-held manual auger. A drain auger is a one-time purchase as opposed to purchasing a new bottle every time a drain is clogged. This is especially helpful for people who deal with clogged drains often, such as people with long hair or kids who like to drop things down the drain.
To be successful in any plumbing project, make sure you turn the water off before you start unscrewing pipes. This tip might actually sound insulting, but you are probably getting caught up in having the right tools and parts and being dressed right. Double check that there is not a splash waiting for you. Then triple and quadruple check.
Garbage disposals are a common cause of plumbing problems, which is an easy problem to solve. Don’t just put everything down the disposal or treat it like a second trash can. Use the disposal things that would be difficult to dispose of normally. Putting all leftover food down the sink is a good way to produce clogs.
When looking for a plumber, you have quite a few options. Ask friends for recommendations of who they use. Check online for plumbers with good reviews and references. Use your yellow pages and look under “Plumbing Contractors” or “Plumbing, Drain and Sewer Cleaning”. Make sure that you contact more than one plumber before making a choice.
Do not pour grease and oil down your drains. Cooking grease will build up in your pipes and could cause back-ups. Keep grease and oil in a container in your fridge and throw it in the trash when it is full. Avoid clogging your pipes with any products containing oil or grease.
When installing or replacing a water heater, pay attention to the drainage pipe. The pipe extruding from the draining pipe needs to be reconnected to the water heater. This pipe, the recirculation pipe, helps keep your water heated without wasting water.
Don’t pour chemicals down your drain to unclog it, even if the product is labeled as a drain opener. These products do help open a clogged drain, but the chemicals they contain may damage the body, and this is especially true if it gets on the skin. Make sure you protect your hands and arms if you are still going to use these products.
So, after reading and applying the helpful tips listed above, you should feel a bit more at ease in the land of plumbing. You have the tools; it’s time to use them. You should feel empowered and ready to begin your plumbing journey to start taking care of your home’s plumbing system.