Professional plumbing is often a very expensive service, and usually the work that is done is something that any homeowner could solve fairly easily with the proper knowledge and tools. If you’d like to start learning to solve your own plumbing problems, read on to see what you can do.
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.
Pump your septic tank every five years to keep it working well. This keeps the sediment from building in the tank, which can cause septic tank failure or backup into your house. Pumping a septic tank might cost a lot of money, but it will cost your more money to clean any back up in sewage you may have had, and replacing your septic tank costs even more!!
To help you find a good plumber, you should get recommendations from people whom you trust. Asking a friend or a neighbor is usually more trustworthy than picking a random plumber out of the phone book. You need a competent plumber, otherwise you could be in for a much bigger problem down the road.
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.
Make sure you clean out overflow holes in your kitchen and bathroom sinks on a regular basis. These holes are intended to act as an emergency fail-safe to prevent spillage from a full sink, but if they are clogged they can’t do their job. You can clean out an overflow hole using the same techniques you would for a clogged drain.
Installing more efficient shower heads can save you tons of money on your energy bill. Most of the hot water we use is in the shower. Investing just a few bucks in these newer shower heads can yield triple digit annual savings.
To avoid sediment buildup, drain gallons of water from your water heater to flush any corrosion. This will help your heater to run more efficiently therefore saving you regular energy costs. Make sure to read your heater’s instructions before attempting this, and do this periodically to make sure that your heater is running as well as it can.
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.
Consult your Department of Consumer Affair if you’re looking to hire a plumbing contractor. They provide many useful services, such as the ability to file a service complaint review complaints, and confirm that they are licensed. Plumbers that you contract to work on your house should both have a current license and a good standing with their previous clients.
If you install a new water heater, and you start to have a leak from the pressure relief valve, you may need an expansion tank installed. The pressure increases when the functioning of the water heater is being performed properly. Therefore, with your new water heater, it may be necessary to have an expansion tank as well.
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.
When it comes to plumbing a great choice is to invest in brass fittings. Sure, they may be more expensive upfront, however their longevity is amazing compared to the alternatives, so you end up saving money. As an added bonus, the brass fittings look so much better than the other alternatives.
To clear mineral deposits from your showerhead, try a soak in white vinegar. Simply add a cup or two of vinegar to a plastic bag and tape it around the showerhead, ensuring that it is submerged. Leave the bag on for an hour, and the vinegar will dissolve the mineral build-up, allowing water to gush through like it was when it was new.
As you can see, plumbing isn’t as difficult as you may have believed. Many plumbing problems can be solved easily with things on hand, or with a few inexpensive parts. Next time you have a problem with your plumbing, try using the tips in this article to solve it yourself!