No one thinks about their plumbing system until something goes wrong. A plumbing issue can lead to backed-up sewer lines, flooded bathrooms, and thousands of dollars in repair costs. Rather than end up with expensive repairs, you can save yourself time and money by curbing certain habits that lead to plumbing problems. With another year drawing to a close, it is time to break your bad habits for good.
Flushing Things Down the Toilet
Toilets are not garbage cans. However, there seems to be some confusion around what can and cannot be flushed.
The only things that should ever be flushed down the toilet are human waste and toilet paper. Anything other than those two things can cause clogs. Help your guests by putting a trash can in your bathroom. If your guests have a place where they can throw things away, they will be less likely to flush items down the toilet.
Pouring the Wrong Things Down Your Sink
While it might be easy to pour bacon grease down your sink, the fat will congeal and cause drainage issues. If you struggle to remember which foods you cannot put down your drain, think of the acronym FOG for fat, oil, and grease. Any FOG food should not be put down a drain because it will immediately start to harden. Over time, it will block the entire drain and require professional repairs.
Throwing the Wrong Food Down the Garbage Disposal
Garbage disposals are a mixed blessing. They make cleaning up after a meal easy, but they can become overloaded as well. If you put too much food down your garbage disposal, it can become clogged and stop functioning correctly. You can prevent this by pacing yourself and slowly getting rid of food waste using your garbage disposal.
Other than avoiding overloaded disposals, you also need to avoid putting the wrong foods down your garbage disposal. You should never use your garbage disposal for foods such as pasta, coffee grounds, eggshells, bones, and oatmeal. Pumpkins and fibrous vegetables should also be avoided.
Using Harsh Chemicals to Treat Clogs
While you can get away with using a little Drano, harsh chemicals can do severe damage to your pipes. Frequently using chemical cleaners to unclog your toilet is hard on your plumbing. Before long, your pipes may develop leaks and other problems.
If your drains are frequently clogging, it is because of an underlying problem. A professional plumber is the best way to tackle the root cause of the problem instead of just treating the symptom. (And it may very well be a root causing the problem. Tree roots are notorious for invading pipes.)
Not Fixing Leaks
Even a small drip can waste hundreds of gallons of water. If you have an ongoing leak, you could be wasting a significant amount of water. Even if this does not cause an expensive water bill, it will ultimately lead to other problems. A leak will not fix itself. Once this problem appears, it will only become worse. If you do not fix it, the pipe could rupture and flood your entire home. Each year, disasters like leaky fixtures or frozen pipes lead to repair costs ranging from $3,500 to $25,000.
Bottom line: One of the biggest mistakes people make is trying to solve plumbing problems alone. It’s best to leave the plumbing to the pros. If you need help preventing or repairing plumbing problems this year, call the team at Courtesy Plumbers at (626) 774-7167.