When it comes to home comfort problems, there are a few that you’re more likely to experience, with plumbing issues being at the top of that list. Yes, they’re inconvenient, and yes, they’re very common. This is particularly true if you live in an older home with as equally old pipes.
Fortunately, however, there are some steps you can follow to prevent plumbing problems. Investing in routine video pipe inspection, for instance, allows our plumbers to get a close look inside your pipes and make sure that there are no buildups that could lead to obstructions, pinhole leaks, or in the case of your sewer line, even tree root infiltration. Read on as we uncover a few of the most common plumbing problems we get called for, as well as some tips on how to avoid them.
- Slow Drains: when you wash your hands, you might notice that the water is flowing down your sink sluggishly. Or perhaps you’re in the shower and notice that you’re standing in an inch or two of water. Slow-moving drains are not only an inconvenience but a sign of a problem that could only grow worse if not properly addressed.
- Clogs or Blockages: Sometimes you know you have a clog. You may try to relieve it with a drain snake or plunger, to no avail. Your next step may be to reach for a bottle of store-bought chemical drain cleaner—don’t! More on that below…
- Foul Odors: Notice a foul smell coming from your drains? This could indicate a dried out p-trap if it’s coming from a single sink drain, especially in the kitchen where you dump a lot of food waste. If it’s coming from multiple drains though, it’s a sign of a sewer blockage.
Avoiding These Problems
So, how are these problems preventable? As for your slow drains and clogs, as we alluded to above reaching for a bottle of store-bought drain cleaner is not the right answer. The problem with these “solutions” is that their ingredients make them highly caustic.
So sure, they may cut through whatever is clogging your drain, but over time and more use, chemical drain cleaners will eat away at your pipes leading to leaks and potentially even a pipe rupture. Therefore, one way to avoid plumbing problems is to avoid using these drain cleaners!
The better option is to do what you can to mitigate the possibilities of clogs happening. In your kitchen, for example, you can avoid pouring FOG (fats, oils, and grease) down the drain, as well as seeds, pits, coffee grounds, eggshells, potato skins, and fibrous foods like celery. Even if you have a garbage disposal, it may not be able to handle all this.
Installing a water softener could also help prevent clogs. Hard water is water with a high level of minerals in it, and these minerals turn into deposits that build up on each other and can create blockages.
For more information about preventing and caring for plumbing problems, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team.