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Top 5 Things You Can Do to Avoid a Visit from the Plumber
This may be hard to absorb, but the biggest threat to your homes mechanical is…you! There are many bad habits that homeowners have, or things that homeowners neglect doing, which result in costly plumbing and HVAC repairs. Here are some simple steps that you can take to save you time and money in the future.
1. Be cautious of what you are flushing down your toilet. Treating your toilet like a garbage disposal if guaranteed to eventually cause a clog. The most important way to prevent toilet clogs is to avoid flushing anything other than human waste and toilet paper. Avoid disposing of feminine hygiene products, baby wipes, paper towels, and grease down your toilet.
2. Change your washing machine hoses. The standard hoses that are supplied with washing machines are made of rubber. The effects of high pressure and temperatures cause the rubber hoses to degrade until they unexpectedly burst. When you get a new washing machine, have it installed using stainless steel washing machine hoses. Replace your existing washing machine hoses with stainless steel ones. Visit our previous blog post for other tips on washing machine maintenance.
3. Protect your hose bibs. In the fall, ensure that you remove your garden hoses from the hose bibs on the outside of your house. If there is a shut-off valve, turn it to off. Ensure that any exposed pipes are properly insulated. Place an insulated hose bib cover over the exterior spigot. This should help prevent cracked hose bibs when the temperatures warm up in the spring. Cracked hose bibs can cause a plumbing disaster in your home’s basement. Get more information on protecting your hose bibs here.
4. Do not use commercial drain cleaning chemicals. These chemicals are so strong that they, in fact, can actually corrode and deteriorate your home’s plumbing from the inside out. This can eventually cause the pipes to burst. They can also partially dissolve a clog, forcing it further down the line, resulting in a more comprehensive plumbing repair. Instead, use a biodegradable and non-corrosive drain cleaner regularly, like Bio-Smart, for preventative maintenance, and be cautious of what you put down your drains.
5. Service your sump pump at least every spring. This is an easy job that you should do before the spring thaw starts, to ensure your sump pump is clean, free of clogs and debris, operating properly, and has some sort of backup in place. This is important to prevent flooding in your basement as the snow melts, and heavy rainfall begins. Click here for the full instructions on sump pump maintenance.
Just as your vehicle needs routine maintenance, so does your home’s mechanical. While some things are best left to the professionals, there are many things that you can do as a homeowner to reduce the chances that you will need to hire a professional plumbing & HVAC company for an emergency repair. Following the steps above are a simple way to get started on properly caring for and maintaining your home.