Taking a step into the wondrous and complex land of plumbing for the very first time might feel a bit daunting. However, by keeping the helpful tips listed below in mind, you will soon find yourself plumbing on par with some of the best plumbers in the field and maintaining your own easily.
Make sure everyone in your home knows where the main water shut off valve is and that they know how to work it. That way, if there is a water problem, anyone in your household can turn off the water, thereby reducing the chances that your home will incur major water damage.
Act quickly if your pipes freeze! Shut off the water and open the faucet, enabling it to drain when it thaws. Starting with the faucet, and working your way to the iced-up area, aim a propane torch or hairdryer at the pipe – this will quickly defrost it. You could also wrap the pipe in a heating pad or aim a heat lamp at it, but this will take quite some time. A last resort is to wrap the pipe in rags and pour boiling water over it.
If you’re connecting a new gas appliance in your home you absolutely need to have the right connector to add it to your gas plumbing. Universal connection kits are readily available at home improvement stores which will make the connection between your flexible hose and the iron supply pipe tight and safe.
In order to ensure that your toilet works smoothly, make sure the chain connected to the handle is of the proper length. If the chain is too short, you will likely have a leak between the tank and the basin, and if the chain is too long, you run the risk of it catching in the flapper.
Avoid frozen pipes this winter! Keep a small trickle of water dripping from faucets, and wrap your uninsulated pipes with foam or newspaper. If possible, keep the doors open between unheated and heated rooms. In an unheated area such as a garage or laundry room, keep a small heater next to the pipes. Remember to do this before the first cold snap hits.
To get the best possible price from a plumber, shop around and keep notes. When you get a price quote from the first plumber you call, you can subtly mention that price to the second and see if they will beat it. If you keep doing this down a list, you can drive down the price considerably.
If you find that your pipes have frozen during the cold winter months open all the faucets in your home. This lowers the water pressure for when the pipes thaw and the water is freely flowing again. Make sure to open all the faucets not just those that are frequently used.
So, after reading and applying the helpful tips listed above, you should feel a bit more at ease in the land of plumbing. You have the tools; it’s time to use them. You should feel empowered and ready to begin your plumbing journey to start taking care of your home’s plumbing system.