If you are completely new to the world of plumbing, then you are probably thinking that some tips on plumbing will help you immensely so that you can begin maintaining your own at home. Listed below are some tips to get you started with your home plumbing maintenance and repair.
Solder with safety in mind. When you solder a copper pipe you want to direct the flame on the copper pipe. The flame of the torch has to be four inches away from the piping. The flame should be targeted directly at the point where the copper piping needs to be disconnected.
Make sure you know where your home’s water shutoff is located. You never know when there might be an emergency involving a broken pipe or damaged connection that requires you to turn off the water right away. In addition, knowing where the shutoff is located is vital before you start any plumbing project, in case anything goes wrong.
Certain things shouldn’t go into your plumbing system. By knowing what you can and cannot flush or throw into the garbage disposal and sink, you can save yourself from a costly repair or disaster. A plumber can usually get your plumbing back into working condition, but can be avoided if you know how to dispose of items correctly.
Frozen and bursting pipes from harsh winter weather is a problem that no-one wants, so plan now to winterize your exterior faucets and pipes against freezing conditions. A simple way to accomplish this is to find the exterior water shut-off valve located inside your home (often located in the basement). Turn off the water valve to stop water flow, and then open up the outside faucets to drain out any water that has collected. Be sure to turn off the outside water faucets tightly after the water has drained out. Take in any hoses you may have outside so they don’t crack from the cold weather.
Making sure you know all of your problems so you can have them fixed by one plumber visit is very beneficial. Having them all fixed in one visit takes a lot of money off of your bill because you don’t have to pay for the visit multiple times so make sure you make a list first.
During the winter, preventing frozen pipes when you live in a small dwelling can be something good to know. Frozen pipes will not only stop your flow of water but can crack and damage pipes. By running a little water out of every faucet during the coldest parts of the day, you can avoid this.
If something is wrong with the disposal in your sink, avoid the temptation to stick your hand in there to fix it. Even when in the off position, garbage disposals are dangerous. Use a guide or the Internet to locate a blueprint of your disposal, or a troubleshooting manual.
If water is backing up into multiple fixtures all over the house, it is no longer going to be effective for you to use chemicals or a small hand snake. This is evidence of a blockage in the main line, and you must contact a professional to take care of this problem for you.
If you have an odor coming from one or more fixtures in your house, it is likely this has to do with the water in water traps. Each fixture has a water trap that is sealed off to prevent odors. If the water evaporates, the odors can surface. Therefore, try adding water to the traps.
When plunging a drain to attempt to remove a blockage, first make sure that the drain is completely covered in water. This helps to form a seal. Then, plunge at least fifteen to twenty times before stopping. Repeat the process two to three times. If this doesn’t work, try a chemical drain cleaner.
Plumbing should only be done by professionals if there is a major problem or if you do not understand plumbing. Many of the big problems that plumbers deal with, actually have simple solutions. The average person, who does not understand the intricacies of plumbing, usually end up compounding the problem by causing other costly damage to the house during the failed repair. The plumber will need to be called in the end, anyway.
It is important to locate the main water supply cut-off valve in your home. The water meter should be located in its vicinity. Toilets, sinks and other fixtures should also have cut-off valves. Make sure the entire family is familiar with these valves, and mark the shut-off position for ease of use.
Never try to undertake a project that you are unsure of. Additionally, never call on a friend to help you with something, if they are not a professoinal. There have been hundreds of good friendships ruined by a guy claiming to know exactly what he is doing, when the truth is he is clueless.
It is a general rule of thumb that you should replace a water faucet every seven years, even if you do not see anything wrong with it. Some faucet problems are not visible to the naked eye, which is why it is so important for them to replaced every so often.
Check the plumbing in your home. If your home has the flexible gray polybutylene water pipes, you need to have a plumber come out and assess their condition. These types of pipe are prone to failure and can lead to very costly repairs if they have a failure within your home.
Clean washing machine lint traps and use pantyhose over the water outlet tube to prevent lint, fuzz and other debris from clogging sewer or septic system filters. Fine mesh traps are also available for this purpose, but a package of knee-high nylon stockings and plastic ties can provide enough filters to encourage you to do the job regularly.
As you can see from the above list of tips, maintaining and repairing your own plumbing can be very time and money-saving in the long run if you know what you are doing. After following these tips, you will no longer be new to plumbing, but you will become a plumbing expert.