Posts Tagged ‘home ownership’

Plumbing Tips and Tricks for Homeowners

September 21st, 2012

One aspect of owning a home is to know how the plumbing system works in the house. You need to be able to quickly deal with blockages in drains, waste pipes and air vents. The drainage system in any house is designed to pull waste away from toilets, bathtubs, showers, sinks and other devices that are connected to the water supply, such as washing machines and dishwashers. To keep your home’s plumbing system up-to-date, it’s imperative that you frequently check to see if there are any blockages. You should deal with them in a timely manner.

Preventing Blockages in the First Place

A fundamental rule of home plumbing is that you should avoid putting solid items in the sinks as much as possible. Not all liquids are suitable for sinks as well, especially oil and fat. Many people flush hair after brushing or shaving down the sink, but this can build up very quickly in the piping. When hair builds up, it also bonds with any liquids that do not mix well with water such as oil, fat or body fluids and causes clumps that clog up the pipes. It’s best to throw hair into a garbage can instead of flushing it down the sink.

Likewise, when using a toilet, make sure that you only put toilet paper into it as that is usually the only paper thin enough to go down well. Tissue paper, paper towels, sanitary pads, diapers and contraceptive devices should never be flushed down the toilet. Moreover, if you are flushing old food into the toilet when cleaning pots or pans, make sure that it is free of bones or other large solids that can block up the pipes.

Winter Tips & Tricks for Home Plumbing

Another important aspect of preventing blockages in your plumbing comes into play in parts of the world where the temperature drops below freezing in the winter. Ideally, water should be used regularly (at least several times a day) in winter homes, so that it does not have a chance to freeze up in the pipes. If you are going away from home in the winter, leave a tiny trickle of hot water coming out of the taps so the pipes do not freeze. Ice in pipes can cause serious damage when it expands. This can be very expensive (not to mention that you won’t be able to use your water at all until repaired).

Dealing with Minor Blockages at Home

If you only have a minor blockage in one of your sinks at home, then they are usually easy to deal with using a commercial drain cleaner. Toilets can be unblocked easily with a plunger. Before you try a chemical cleaner on your sinks, it also pays to give it a shot with a plunger first and see if you can get anything blocking the pipes out by force.

If you are having difficulty with unblocking pipes at home, then you might want to call in a professional plumber.