We’ve all heard the saying that April showers lead to May flowers…but none of us want those April showers to occur inside our homes. Though leaks and plumbing problems can happen at any time of year, the extra moisture that occurs in spring can often lead to more problems than in other seasons. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to avoid plumbing disasters in your house. Here are some of the best prevention tips:
Regulate What Goes in the Toilet
Small amounts of toilet paper and bodily waste are the only two things that should ever be flushed down your toilet. If you have children or guests in your home who don’t yet know the rules, you could experience a plumbing disaster in the form of clogged pipes or an overflowing toilet. To make sure everyone gets the message, consider posting a sign above the toilet and having a nearby garbage can so any other items can easily be tossed.
Limit Garbage Disposal Waste
Though it would stand to reason that you can put any food substance down your garbage disposal (that’s its job, right??), there are pretty strict guidelines for what can and cannot be put down the sink. Bones, peels and rinds, grease, and any bulky, carb-laden foods that can expand should be tossed in the garbage can instead of the disposal. Also make sure to run plenty of cool water down the drain when you run your disposal and take special care to ensure no silverware, sponges, or other items get caught in the drain.
Get Some Strainers
Any drain without a disposal can get backed up by hair and other debris. To avoid an expensive clog, invest in some mesh strainers that can keep out most of the substances that should not go down a drain. These items are inexpensive especially when you consider how much it will cost to have the clog professionally removed.
Watch the Chemical Treatments
When you have a drain blockage or clog, it’s tempting to grab an over-the-counter chemical treatment to try to quickly take care of the problem. However, these treatments can put your pipes at risk as they cause deterioration. If you have some plumbing skills, you can address a clog with a plunger or drain snake. If that doesn’t take care of the problem, call in an Omaha plumber like those at ASAP.
Know Where the Main Shut-Off Valve is Located
If a pipe bursts or another disaster occurs, knowing how to quickly shut off the water main can keep the damage to a minimum. Make sure you and everyone else in the family knows where the shut-off valve is located and attempt to turn it periodically to make sure it will turn without any resistance. If you do have to use the main shut-off valve due to a plumbing problem, the next step is to call a local plumbing pro.
Signs of an Impending Plumbing Emergency
In some cases, you’ll never see a plumbing emergency coming. But in others, there may be signs that can alert you to an impending disaster. Here are some to pay attention to:
- Puddles or a bad smell in your yard.
- Rust on inlets or pipes.
- Strong gas odors near the kitchen or heaters in the home.
- Lack of hot water when you take a shower.
- Water stains on the walls or ceilings.
- Frozen pipes.
- Severely blocked drainage systems.
We all want to enjoy the nice weather and growth that spring signals. Don’t let a plumbing disaster ruin your spring and saddle with you huge bills and home damage. Pay attention to the warning signs of plumbing disasters and take precautionary measures to ensure your spring is a dry one (at least in your home!). If you do have a plumbing emergency, call the pros at ASAP Appliance & Plumbing for help.