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How to Maintain Plumbing

At R.S. Andrews, we’re committed to ensuring that your home’s plumbing system works seamlessly and efficiently. Just as regular check-ups keep you healthy, regular maintenance keeps your plumbing in top-notch condition. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll share practical tips and insights on how to maintain your plumbing system, prevent problems, and ensure the long-term well-being of your home.

Mindful Flushing and Draining 

The plumbing system within our homes, especially toilets, is meticulously crafted to handle specific types of waste. Primarily, toilets can efficiently manage human excreta and minimal amounts of toilet paper. Introducing foreign materials like sanitary products, wet wipes, and excessive toilet paper can easily lead to formidable blockages, resulting in inconvenient disruptions and pricey repairs. When considering sinks and showers, the use of drain strainers becomes paramount. These unassuming devices act as the first line of defense against potential clogs, capturing hair, soap residues, and miscellaneous debris. Not only do they prevent drain clogging, but they also simplify the routine cleaning tasks, ensuring smooth outflow.

Regulate Water Pressure

A pulsating high-pressure shower might feel therapeutic after a long day, but sustaining high water pressure throughout your residence can have detrimental consequences on your plumbing infrastructure. Such pressure strains pipes and fixtures, heightening the risk of sudden leaks, potential ruptures, and consequently shortening the life expectancy of your plumbing components. Employing a pressure regulator becomes essential in such scenarios. This device ensures that the water pressure within your dwelling remains within a safe threshold, safeguarding your plumbing and prolonging its operational lifespan.

Be Garbage Disposal Smart 

The garbage disposal system, though a marvel for managing kitchen waste, is not impervious to clogs and malfunctions. When operating the disposal, always ensure cold water is flowing; this solidifies fats and oils, aiding in their efficient grinding. Steer clear of fibrous foods like celery stalks, corn husks, or potato peels, and starchy staples like rice and pasta. Such materials can wrap around the disposal blades or expand with water, creating persistent blockages and impeding its performance.

Regular Leak Checks

The menace of undetected leaks, no matter how minuscule, can wreak havoc over time. The repercussions range from inflated water bills to the sinister growth of mold and severe structural water damage. Regular visual inspections of all visible plumbing – be it pipes, faucets, or fixtures, can’t be stressed enough. Early detection and swift rectification of even minor leaks can stave off compounded issues, preserving the structural integrity of your abode and warding off unnecessary expenses.

Water Heater Maintenance 

Sediment accumulation at your water heater’s base is a commonplace occurrence but can drastically impede its functioning, resulting in reduced efficiency and potential damage. Undertaking an annual flush of your water heater is not just a recommended practice; it’s an imperative. This activity ensures the elimination of accumulated debris, promoting optimal heater performance, and guaranteeing a consistent supply of hot water when necessitated.

Protect Against Freezing

Winter brings unique challenges for plumbing, especially in areas known for harsh cold spells. Pipes in non-insulated areas, like basements and attics, are at risk. When the water inside these pipes freezes, it expands, exerting immense pressure on the pipe walls, which can lead to ruptures. Burst pipes can cause significant water damage and result in costly repairs. The best proactive measure is insulating these vulnerable pipes, providing a thermal barrier that wards off the cold and ensures the water remains liquid, safeguarding the home’s plumbing during winter.

Cleaning and Storage of Tools

Effective maintenance is not limited to just plumbing; the tools employed play a pivotal role too. Post every use, ensure they are devoid of dirt, grime, and moisture. Designate a dry, structured space for their storage – a toolbox or a pegboard is ideal. Such care wards off potential deterioration and ensures they’re always primed for use.

Call the Plumbing Experts

While DIY maintenance is beneficial, there are times when professional assistance is the best option:

  • If you encounter major leaks or extensive clogs that you can’t resolve on your own.
  • If you suspect underlying plumbing issues that require expert diagnosis.
  • For routine plumbing check-ups and maintenance tasks that ensure your system’s optimal performance.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does my faucet have low water pressure?

Over time, minerals can build up in your faucet, causing a decrease in water pressure. It could also be a result of a more systemic issue, like problems with the main water line or a partially closed shut-off valve. It’s recommended to check the faucet aerator first, and if that’s not the issue, consider consulting a professional.

How often should I replace the hoses on appliances like washing machines?

It’s generally recommended to replace the hoses on your washing machine every three to five years, even if they don’t show any outward signs of wear. A failed hose can result in significant water damage.

What can I do about the foul odor coming from my garbage disposal?

Over time, food particles can become trapped in the disposal, leading to unpleasant odors. To freshen it up, try running a few slices of lemon or a handful of ice cubes and baking soda through the disposal. This can help clean the blades and eliminate any lingering smells.

Why do I hear a loud banging noise in my walls when I turn off the water?

This is commonly referred to as “water hammer”. It occurs when water suddenly stops or changes direction, causing the pipes to shake or bang. Over time, this can lead to damage or leaks in the pipes. Installing water hammer arrestors or adjusting the water pressure can often solve this problem.

Should I be concerned about the brown water coming from my faucets?

Brown or discolored water can be caused by a variety of reasons, including rust in the pipes, disturbances in the main water line, or even issues with your water heater. While occasional, brief discoloration might be due to harmless disturbances in the water supply, consistent or prolonged brown water should be investigated immediately to ensure the safety and quality of your water supply.

Wrap Up

Your plumbing system is the unsung hero of your home, ensuring your comfort and well-being. At R.S. Andrews, we believe that maintaining your plumbing is a responsibility that pays off in the long run. By investing a little time and effort into regular maintenance, you’re investing in the future of your home. For personalized advice, plumbing maintenance assistance, and professional plumbing services, reach out to us. We’re here to ensure your home’s plumbing remains reliable, efficient, and hassle-free.

Maintaining your home’s plumbing is a commitment to your home’s health and your own peace of mind. At R.S. Andrews, we’re your partners in plumbing maintenance. Contact us today to ensure your plumbing system receives the care it deserves and continues to serve you well for years to come.


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