Plumbing issues don’t have to cause exorbitant damages and water issues. With some preventative measures in place and quick reaction time to emergencies, you can resolve your own plumbing issues until help arrives. Be sure to keep your plumbing contractor’s contact information handy for times of crisis.
Some common household plumbing conundrums include the following issues:
A Clogged Drain
Probably the most common quick plumbing fixes have to do with unclogging a stubborn drain. The best way to avoid these issues is to be vigilant about what goes down the drain. Keep drains covered with traps to prevent items from falling into the sink and causing stubborn clogs that require dismantling of the line. Also, try snaking out a clogged pipe before using harsh chemical agents. These can erode the walls of your pipes, while also posing the risk of burning your skin or eyes.
When drains are sluggish, try pouring boiling water down the sink to melt any residue that could be slowing the drain. Also, create a concoction of white vinegar and baking soda for when clogs prevent drains from doing their jobs. This is far safer than the expensive de-clogging chemicals that you may buy.
A Toilet That Won’t Flush
The most common issue when the toilet won’t flush is the ball-chain inside your tank. If the chain cannot be reconnected to the ball, consider investing in a simple toilet repair kit from any local hardware dealer. These are a great item to keep on hand in case of a toilet emergency, too.
Water coming in around the tap or faucet handles can be a problem; if not resolved, the water can seep down under your sink, and potentially cause water damage to the cabinetry or flooring of the home. Tightening the washer around the faucet fixture may resolve the problem, but it is possible that the entire tap needs replacing. Grab a wrench and try to tighten the washer; if this doesn’t work, call your plumber.
Avoid the risk of burst pipes by slowly thawing frozen lines with a hair dryer. Never use a torch or flame to thaw them out; this may also cause them to break. Insulate any exposed pipes with towels, bedding, and even old clothing, to give them an added bit of insulation when weather is cold or during winter seasons. Shut off the water supply, and start thawing!
When trying to thaw pipes, it is possible to do serious damage and possibly break a line or pipe. If your pipes burst or spring a leak, the first thing to do is shut off the water supply. Locating the water main and keeping a wrench nearby that fits the fixture is an essential preventative measure that every homeowner should implement. Other pipe hazards that can cause a leak include frequent use of harsh chemical agents in your plumbing lines; in these instances, shut off the water to curb potential water damage and call a plumber.
No Water Pressure
When water pressure wanes, it could be a sign of many underlying issues. When this is your experience, it makes most sense to contact your regular plumbing professional to have the matter looked at further. A wise move might be to shut off the main valve to discontinue the water supply until a plumbing contractor evaluates it. This will also reduce the potential for damage in the event that water is escaping and leaking from the plumbing line, curbing possible property damage.
While the best approach to plumbing issues is usually to contact a plumbing professional, use these tips to temporarily resolve the issue and curb any further damage that could be caused. Keeping a few plumbing tools on hand, such as a wrench, a plumbing snake, and a toilet kit, is a great strategy to maintain plumbing systems and provide quick fixes to these common issues.