As a homeowner, there are many things you should know and understand about residential plumbing problems and prevention. While no one expects you to be a plumbing contractor and make significant repairs, understanding how to diagnose problems and prevent issues, such as clogs, goes a long way toward avoiding unnecessary service calls.
If your home's future plumbing contractors could give you advice, here are four things they'd want you to know:
#1: Water Meters Are Rarely Broken
When your water bill suddenly shoots up for no reason, your first thought might be that the meter is malfunctioning; however, that's very rarely the case. Most frequently, there's a water leak. If your water bill is much higher than usual, but you can't find a leak, it is likely the water main between the street and your home.
#2: Just Because a Product Is Labeled "Flushable" Doesn't Mean It Should Be Flushed
You can bet the only thing going down the toilets in a plumbing contractor's home is human waste and toilet paper. Although many products are advertised as "flushable," it doesn't mean you are ever advised to flush them down your home's toilets.
Many plumbing service calls are to homes where someone flushed a pan of "flushable" cat litter or feminine hygiene products, and now their main line is clogged up.
#3: Drain Cleaning Products Mostly Clean Out Your Wallet
If a kitchen or bathroom sink is slowly draining, there is a clog. No matter what liquid plumbing solution you pour into it, the root problem isn't going to be solved. Drain cleaners dissolve grease but don't do anything for hair, food, or paper clogs.
In the days following treatment with drain cleaning products, the drain will flow better, but soon it will be clogged up again. Save your money, and plunge clogs, or have a plumbing contractor troubleshoot the problem and offer long-term solutions.
#4: Know Where Your Home's Emergency Water Shut-Off Valve Is Located and How to Operate It
Lastly, and most importantly, your future plumbing contractors want you to know where the water shut-off valve is on your property and how to use it. A burst pipe or other major leak is much less of an emergency when you can temporarily stop the flow of water. You should be able to turn off the water to give the plumber time to become available to assist you. This helps protect your property from unnecessary water damage and gives you time to obtain repair quotes.
Contact a local plumber for more information.