Everyone will have need for a plumber at some point in their life because leaks do happen. However, every homeowner should take steps to protect themselves and their investment by having a basic understanding of how the plumbing works and what to do in the event of an emergency to prevent damage from becoming a massive amount of damage. Here are five basic things every homeowner should know how to do:
- 1. Turn off the water – Even if you don’t take the time to learn anything else, this is the one tip that you can’t afford to skip. Every homeowner should know precisely where the water shut-off valve is and how to turn it off. This means that men should show their wives where it is also in case something happens and they’re not home. Turning off the water can save your home from becoming completely flooded if something terrible happens.
- 2. Repair faucets that are leaking – Most homeowners have no idea just how much money they are sending down the pipes every single month simply because they have a faucet that is leaking incessantly. Sometimes all you need to do is replace a washer. Keep the manual whenever you replace a faucet so that you know how to handle this simple repair if you need to.
- 3. Septic tank inspections – This piece of maintenance is probably one better left to professionals, but it is definitely up to the homeowner to call someone in to check it out. About every three years, you should have a plumber come and take a look at your septic tank. It will need to be cleaned if there is too much scum inside of it, so you don’t want to forget to do this. A clean septic tank is less likely to back up and cause a big smelly problem inside your home.
- 4. Annual pipe inspections – These inspections are rather simple. Just go around and look for any leaks. Pay attention to all of the pipes you can see. If you see any rust, deposits of minerals, or corrosion, there is a good chance that you have found a leak, even if there does not seem to be any moisture there at that moment. Also be sure to have a plumber come in to do regular leak detection procedures just to make sure that nothing is leaking in an area where you can’t see it, like behind a wall or in the floor. These invisible leaks are the most dangerous because they just get worse and worse until you have thousands of dollars’ worth of damage on your hand.
- 5. Drain the water heater – The water heater is a vital appliance in your home and also one of the most expensive, so it stands to reason that you would want to keep it in good operating order for as long as possible. The easiest way to extend the life of your water heater is to open the drain valve located toward the bottom of the unit and let the water drain out until it is clear. This usually is about five gallons, so it will take a bit to drain.
It always pays to have a professional help you with any plumbing maintenance questions you have. Some people learn better by being shown how to do something, so don’t be afraid to ask your plumber to show you how to do some of these things. This will also allow you to get to know him a little bit and learn if this is someone you would want to call when you have a serious problem.
Scott English Plumbing is a trusted plumber in the Irvine, CA area.