There's no doubt that plumbing problems can be quite a hassle. And if you've ever had to reach out to a plumber on short notice, you know how expensive it can be—even for seemingly small leaks or other repairs.
Here are some tips to help you fix the most common plumbing faults homeowners experience. However, if you feel that the problem is beyond your skill set, you shouldn't hesitate to reach out to a professional plumber to avoid making things worse.
Learn To Deal with Clogged Drains
Check the trap first before anything else whenever you notice a clogged drain. The trap collects hair, soap scum and sediments which can clog the system over time. Remove the stopper and then clean everything inside the drain to remove these deposits. You can even use your hands or a wire hanger to get rid of the materials.
You probably reach for the drain cleaner under your kitchen sink when you have a clogged sink, toilet or shower drain. But commercial drain cleaners aren't always effective and can even damage your pipes.
Instead, use a plunger to remove the clog. Plungers create suction that pushes the clog further down the drain. You can also use a wet/dry vacuum at low suction to pull out any loose materials left inside. The vacuum will create a better seal for the plunger when you push down on it.
Fix Dripping Faucets Immediately
A dripping faucet is often a nuisance and can also be costly. The constant dripping can quickly add up to a lot of wasted water and money if it isn't fixed on time.
To fix a dripping faucet, you only need to replace the o-ring and tighten the retaining nut. First, turn off the water supply to your faucet and put a bucket under it to catch any runoff water. Then, use an adjustable wrench to remove the handle on your faucet. Remove the O-ring and place a new one on the valve stem. Finally, tighten the retaining nut, put everything back together and you're done.
Insulate Your Plumbing Components
Adding insulation around your pipes is one of the most effective ways to keep them from freezing. If a pipe freezes, it can burst and result in water damage to your home. Insulation also helps maintain the desired water temperature, irrespective of the weather conditions.
To insulate your pipes, you first need to choose the type of insulation you need. Most pipes use foam rubber tubes with adhesive on the seam as insulation. Others use fibreglass sleeves that wrap around the pipe and hold it in place with wire ties.
Rubber tubes are often easy to install but may require replacement if the adhesive fails. Fibreglass is more permanent but challenging to install in hard-to-reach spots. However, both options are widely available at many hardware stores and home improvement centres. But if you feel like the job is too much for you to handle, enlist the help of a plumber.