Keeping your home plumbing in good working order will keep you from wasting thousands of dollars on repairs. It will also prevent your home from becoming a disaster should a pipe burst, which is a very real threat to your safety and the value of your property.
Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or an experienced home owner, there are a few basic tips to help keep your home plumbing running smoothly. The following basic plumbing repair tips can help you avoid major expenses and save you time by preventing problems from arising in the first place.
1. Know Your Water-Using Appliances
All your water-using appliances have small handles on them where you can shut off their supply lines. These include your washer, toilets and sinks. You can find these on the front or back of your appliances, usually near the wall. For showers and bathtubs, they might be located in an adjacent closet or even in the basement at the supply line.
2. Test Your Drains and Plumbing Fittings
It’s easy to ignore the appearance of clogged drains and other plumbing fixtures, but you need to make an effort to check these on a regular basis. Look for mineral deposits, discoloration and other issues that may indicate an issue.
3. Locate and Know Your Home’s Main Plumbing Shut-Off Valve
If you ever have a leak in your house, the first thing you should do is cut off your main water supply. There is almost always a main valve near the street and a second one that you can use to isolate parts of your plumbing system without shutting off the whole house. You can locate these in your home by looking for a bar-type or wheel-type lever.
4. Keep Your Gutters Clear during Fall and Winter
If your gutters are clogged, your pipes are at risk of bursting due to the weight of frozen debris. This can cause costly damage to your gutters and the foundation of your home.
5. Schedule Maintenance Runs With Your Plumber
When you schedule a maintenance run with your plumber, they will inspect your home’s plumbing system for any problems and provide suggestions to help you avoid them in the future.
6. Fix Leaks Before They Get Big
Every year, plumbing leaks waste about 1 trillion gallons of water in the U.S. These leaks are often undetected and can lead to significant damage to your home’s structure, including wood beams, drywall, carpet and other important infrastructure.
The best way to prevent these leaks is to know your water-using appliances and the location of all your shut-off valves. Taking care of these simple tasks can ensure you won’t have to spend a lot of money on plumbing repairs and keep your water bill low.
7. Maintain Your Water Intake and Outtake Systems
Your water intake and outtake systems work together to keep your home plumbing operating efficiently. These systems include your hot and cold water supply lines, as well as the drainage system that carries waste away from your home.