The time of year that we spend decluttering and cleaning our homes is coming, but we’re not there just yet. Mother nature hasn’t quite made up her mind about whether or not we get sunshine and cool breezes or gray skies and snow.
However, there are things in our home that may not be able to wait for blue skies and flowers before we work the elbow grease and fix some issues.
Namely, plumbing issues won’t wait. While a good, hearty dusting or scouring the tile can wait until the hibernation truly wears off, a clogged drain will not.
Here are some tips on how to care for some common home plumbing issues.
The Biggest Culprit – A Clogged Drain
There isn’t a lot that’s more frustrating than hearing that gurgle and seeing the water in your sink slowly rise as you do the dishes. Often, the problem lies with the garbage disposal.
You can always call the plumber, but before you do, here are a few things you can do to fix the clog yourself.
Try removing the clog with a plunger:
– Step 1: partially fill the sink with water (if the drain is your kitchen sink with two sides, then cover the other side).
– Step 2: work the plunger vigorously to break up the clog.
– Step 3: remove any waste that comes into the sink because you don’t want to force it back down the drain.
Do not plunge the sink if you tried a commercial drain cleaner. Allow the drain cleaner to work through the sink because the chemicals are dangerous if they touch your skin while plunging the sink. In general using chemicals can do more harm than good on the drain pipes.
That Ominous Sound – A Leaky Faucet
It’s a common scene in horror films. The drip, drip, drip of water from a faucet that jarrs a character from sleep, sending them on a nightmare from which there is no escape.
Sometimes, having a leaking faucet in your home can feel like a nightmare. But there is hope.
Water moves through the pipes in your home under pressure. This pressure is what ensures water pours from your faucets when you need it to with the twist of a knob or the lift of a handle. There is a washer that seals the pipe connected to your faucets, blocking the flow of water when you don’t need it. Sometimes, this washer can become torn, stiff, or dislodged, allowing some of that pressurized water to trickle through.
By replacing the washer you can fix the leak without need for a professional. As always, if you are unsure of your abilities, call a professional.
The Bane of All Showers – Low Water Pressure
We have all probably experienced the inconvenience of a break in the main water supply or the flushing of the town’s fire hydrants and the dramatic decrease in water pressure these cause.
However, if your water pressure has dropped from a strong, steady stream to a spotty dribble, and a call to your town’s water department tells you that nothing should be interrupting your flow, then the issue may be with the pipes in your home.
A fixable issue is a buildup of deposits or sediment on faucet aerators. To remove this buildup remove the aerator, or the end of the faucet, give it a scrub with a toothbrush under running water, and then submerge it in vinegar. If you cannot remove the end of the faucet, showerhead, or tub faucet, you can affix a plastic bag filled with vinegar to the end with a rubber band. Leave the aerator in the solution for at least an hour or overnight, rinse, and replace. Your water should run freely once again.
If your water pressure is still low, you may need to replace the aerator or you could have a greater issue at hand and should call a plumber.
Get a Handle on it – The Running Toilet
Have you ever flushed your toilet, heard the running water, but could still hear it some time later after it has usually stopped? Most of us have, and when we do, we tend to give the handle a jiggle or try flushing again. Usually, this fixes the issue.
Why? Because the most common cause of a running toilet is a loose or imbalanced flapper valve. When this happens, water from the tank is able to flow into the bowl. Often, a simple handle jiggle will set the valve right, but if this doesn’t work, you may need to replace the flapper valve, the float apparatus, or the fill tube.
To fix the issue yourself, you will need a toilet repair kit. However, if the issue persists even after you have done the appropriate fixing and replacing, you will need to call a plumber because the issue may be more complex and could lead to bigger problems. Take note that a running toilet coupled with broken pipes can lead to a flooded home.
We hope you find these plumbing tips helpful!
Do you have a plumbing problem you are unable to fix? Give us a call because we offer the same high quality service, anytime, any day.