To reduce repair costs, here are some basic plumbing self-help tips.
- Be cautious with what you put in your garbage disposal. Some foods like potato skins will not grind up very easily. Do not put grease down the garbage disposal.
- Run water when using the disposal and keep it running for a few seconds after turning it off.
- Don’t operate the dishwasher if you think there is a problem. It drains into the disposal which can lead to bigger problems.
- Check your washing machine hoses from time to time for leaks and loose connections. Stainless steel hoses are a nice affordable upgrade from rubber.
- Always use a screen or filter over lavatory and tub drains to snag hair and other objects that otherwise can cause your drains to clog. Hair doesn’t disappear when it goes down a drain; try to avoid putting it there!
- To help a blocked toilet from getting worse, keep a plunger around at all times. Biodegradable wipes and feminine products will cause your sewer main to back up over time. Dispose of these products in the correct manner.
- Occasionally check the plumbing below your kitchen and bathroom sinks for any leaks.
- Attaching an aerator (the small screen at the end of a faucet) will help reduce water consumption by as much as 50% with no loss of pressure. If your pressure should drop, it could be as simple as removing the aerator and cleaning it.
- Every once in a while, drain your water heater at the valve on the very bottom of the water heater for a few seconds. This will increase your water heater lifespan.