August 3, 2017
If you are like most households, you are probably spending a lot of time during the extended break in the kitchen. More meals at home and increased trips to the fridge and pantry for snacks means more use of the kitchen appliances – and plumbing. Your kitchen sink gets a real workout during the summer vacation and, as a result, needs extra care to ensure it performs efficiently. Is your Edmonton kitchen getting more traffic this break? Try these simple kitchen plumbing maintenance tips and keep your sink running smoothly throughout the summer.
Cleaning the Aerator
A dirty aerator is a common cause of faucet problems. Low water pressure, spraying/uneven water flow and leakage from the fixtures can all be attributed to sediment or lime buildup blocking the aerator screen. Cleaning the aerator on a regular basis, especially if you have an issue with hard water, is a good way to keep fixture problems to a minimum. In order to clean the aerator, you’ll need to unscrew it from the body of the faucet. If you own a basic faucet design, the aerator is the component at the end of the faucet where the water flows. Simply unscrew the piece with a pair of pliers and separate the pieces to clean. A small brush and a bit of vinegar is all will need to clean off the aerator. After cleaning, reassemble and screw back into the faucet. Any problems that were related to the blockage should be resolved.
Tightening a Loose Fixture
Do you have a loose faucet or fixture component? Loose parts can compromise the efficiency of the faucet and cause the water lines to rupture. A loose fixture can also start a slow leak, which wastes water and potentially cause damage to the surrounding area. Before you begin, make sure that you have turned off the supply valves underneath the sink in the back of the cabinet. Turn them both clockwise to cut off the water to the faucet. There are a variety of faucet designs, so the specifics of tightening a particular fixture will vary. Follow this link for information on tightening the handle or base of the most common designs.
Cleaning the Plumbing
One of the main reasons for kitchen sink blockage is the buildup of grease in the plumbing. Even if you are mindful of removing greasy food from plates and dishes before rinsing them in the sink, residue can slowly build over time. One of the easiest maintenance tips for cleaning out pipes involves water and dish liquid. Boil a large pot of water on the stove then pour about a tablespoon of the dish detergent into the sink. Wait about minute to let the dish liquid to cover the pipes. Take the pot and slowly pour the boiling water into the sink as well. The detergent helps to dissolve the grease, while the boiling water clears out the grease deposits and any food debris stuck to the pipes. If you are having trouble with consistent blockage, repeat this process at least once more to ensure all the grease and debris has been removed.
Cleaning the Disposal
Disposal cleaning is a different process than cleaning the plumbing. One of the major issues with the garbage disposal is the odor that can build up through consistent use. Holidays and vacations often lend themselves to big meals, which means the disposal is probably working overtime. A safe and easy way to get rid of odor is to grind ice cubes and lemon rinds for about 30 seconds. Follow this up with liquid dish detergent while the disposal is still running – then rinse with cold water until the blades have released all of the debris.
While the disposal is a convenient tool, it is best to use it sparingly. Any food that is washed through the plumbing can harm the system. Make sure to always turn the water on before you begin to add the food debris. Continue to run water at least 15 seconds after using the disposal to ensure all the debris has been flushed. Only use the disposal for food waste – it is not a trash can.
Keep your kitchen plumbing running efficiently all summer with simple maintenance procedures you can perform yourself. Remember that the staff at Always Plumbing & Heating are experts at kitchen plumbing repairs and remodeling. If you decide that you need professional help with your kitchen plumbing, contact us today. Call 780-489-8118 (Edmonton) or 587-601-1253 (Fort McMurray) to schedule an appointment!
To request a service appointment, give us a call at 780-489-8118 or contact us online.