Few things are more aggravating than being hit with a plumbing emergency. Depending on its scale, a single plumbing mishap can cause considerable damage to your home and pave the way for a mountain of costly repair bills. Fortunately, nipping serious plumbing issues in the bud isn’t nearly as daunting as many homeowners think. When it comes to making plumbing mishaps a thing of the past, a little bit of consistency and follow-through can do you a world of good.
Address Clogs in a Timely Manner
Clogged drains are among the most common plumbing issues faced by many households. In light of all the shaving, hair-trimming and shampooing that occurs in the average bathroom, it should come as no surprise that hair is the most frequent culprit. If tackled early on, clogs can be fairly easy to remedy, but the longer you wait, the more serious the problem will become and the harder it will be to fix. As such, it’s recommended that you tend to clogs as soon as they’re discovered. It doesn’t take long for a slow drain to become a hopelessly backed-up drain, so when dealing with clogs, time is of the essence.
If addressed in a timely manner, most light clogs can be remedied with a plunger or drain snake. In more serious cases, you may need to use an over-the-counter drain cleaner. However, when going this route, make a point of avoiding chemical-laden cleaners, as these can eat away at your pipes, thereby reducing their efficiency and lifespan. Organic options may cost a little more, but they’ll save you money in the long run. If a clog is left alone long enough, fixing it may require the aid of a professional plumbing service. Whether you have a drain in desperate need of unclogging or are looking for a Los Angeles faucet repair service, the right plumber will be able to tackle the job with aplomb.
Be Mindful of What You Flush
A substantial number of toilet clogs occur as a result of people flushing things that have no business being flushed. As a general rule of thumb, you should avoid flushing anything aside from waste or toilet paper. Paper towels, feminine hygiene products and diapers should not be flushed under any circumstances. You should also be wary of moisturized wipes that claim to be flushable. Despite what the packaging may say, these have also been known to clog toilets, so if you insist on flushing them, flush no more than one at a time. To ensure that no one in your household is tempted to flush any of the aforementioned items, place garbage cans in each of your bathrooms and empty them regularly.
Use Drain Strainers
Drainage clogs can often be avoided with the help of drain strainers. As the name implies, these strainers are placed directly over drains and designed to prevent clog-conducive elements from going down them. For example, when placed over shower and bathroom sink drains, a strainer will effectively limit the amount of hair able to find its way down the drain. Similarly, when used in conjunction with kitchen sinks, a strainer will prevent utensils and large chunks of food from getting into the drain.
Know Your Disposal’s Limits
In addition to being mindful of what you flush, you should exercise caution when using your garbage disposal. While disposals are certainly helpful, they are not equipped to handle every type of food waste. Large chunks of food can choke disposals, ultimately causing them to back up or break altogether. Hard foods like egg shells, uncooked vegetables and chicken bones can have similar effects. For a comprehensive list of what your disposal can and cannot handle, consult the device’s owner’s manual or pay a visit to the manufacturer’s website.
An unexpected plumbing emergency can cause you a considerable amount of stress and cost a small fortune to repair. Furthermore, not being able to use a sink, shower or toilet for an extended period is an incredibly inconvenient prospect for busy households. However, unbeknownst to many homeowners, most plumbing problems are easily avoidable — provided, of course, the proper precautions are taken. Putting the pointers discussed above to good use can ensure that you’re able to stay on top of potential plumbing problems and save yourself a great deal of time and money.