Owning a home comes with many responsibilities, and one of the most important ones is making sure your home’s plumbing is in good working condition. Catching a problem early on can mean the difference between a quick simple fix and a big expensive plumbing disaster later down the road. At least once a year check for those leaks and run those faucets to make sure everything is OK and you won’t have to call for a plumber. Here’s a quick checklist of what to look for.
First thing to do is visually inspect all of your plumbing fixtures including your kitchen sink, bath tub, shower valves, toilet, and bathroom sink. Make sure everything is properly secured and aligned, with no leaks or rust. Flush the toilet and make sure the water does not continue to run. If after 3 to 5 minutes the toilet continues to run, that may be a sign of a slow leak.
Water pressure is another issue to watch out for. Run all the faucets in your home to make sure the water runs around 30 psi. If the water pressure is low, it could mean a dirty shower head or faucet, a clog, sediment buildup, or a problem with the aerator. Likewise, check all drains to make sure water drains away quickly and without any bubbling, which may require the service of a plumber. If you haven’t got a way to check the water pressure, it’s a good idea to have that done for you by a pro every three or four years.
If you feel you are up for it, your water heater should be checked as well. If it’s one of the newer tankless water heater Vancouver, make sure all heating elements are working. If your water heater runs on gas, it’s a good idea to check for rust in the burner chamber. Also, the flame should be blue. A plumber’s help may be required for more advanced checks such as draining the water heater to examine the sediment level at the bottom. Also, if you have one of those on demand water heater Vancouver in your home it needs to be checked ever couple years for proper configuration.
If you have a basement, check the pipes going through it and into the rest of your home. This includes both water and sewer pipes. As with other pipes, check for leaks, tightness, or drips. If you smell sewer odors, this could mean you have a septic problem in which case you may need to call a plumber.
If left unchecked, there could be many potential plumbing problems waiting to happen when you least expect it. However, checking everything once a year can easily help prevent future disasters and visits from a plumber. If the time comes a professional’s help is needed you can rest assured that your plumber will have the experience, skills, and tools needed to solve your plumbing problems.
Plugged Toilet Story…
Plumbing problems, particularly overflow issues, are always annoying and always seem to come at the most annoying times.
This morning I was getting ready for work. I used the restroom, flushed the toilette, and left the room. I kept hearing the water running. Low and behold I walk back into the restroom and there is a pool of water on the floor and the toilet is still running.
Ah, the old “backed up toilet” problem. This is one that man will struggle with for centuries to come and the first man who totally fixes it will be filthy rich.
Until then, lets go over some solutions a person could use in order to overcome this most frustrating unhappy event. Hopefully, you can use one of these suggestions to avoid having to call a plumber out and in the process becoming $120 poorer in the process.
Get The Plunger
This is the first thing you want to do. Your toilet is clogged and and you want to use suction, caused by the rubber head of the plunger, to suction it out.
Make sure you insert the plunger into the toilet bowl in a position where you can get a good seal. The stronger the suction created; the better as more force is being applied to the item(s) that is stuck. Push up and down so you are creating a strong “pull” and a forceful flow of water to break through whatever is clogging up your toilet.
Time to Get The Snake
No, I am not talking about a dangerous animal.
I am talking about a tool that can be used to remove an obstruction that may be deep inside your sewer line. This item is also referred to as an auger.
Basically this tool is a pool with a flexible and somewhat long wire coil that can twist and turn and go fairly far inside a pipe or hole.
Slide the coil inside your toilet and begin twisting. The auger, or snake, is designed to break the clog apart or grasp it and pull it out. After you pull the main chuck out you want to flush the toilet as their are most likely little chunks left in their that you do not want to settle.
There are substances (like Drano) that are manufactured with the express purpose of clearing drains and toilets. They clear the pipe by basically dissolving the substance that is causing the obstruction.
Make sure that you look on the back of whatever drain cleaner you buy and make certain it is safe for porcelain (what your toilet is made from). Follow the recommended dosage found on the back of the bottle.
After several hours there is a good chance the item will have dissolved and you can flush the toilet. I like to wait as long as possible to make sure the object has been broken up.
These are your three basic options your typical can take, without any professional plumbing knowledge, to solve a backed up toilet.
If you try one or a combination of the three suggestions just mentioned and it does not work then you have a more serious problem. You will have to call a professional plumber. Hopefully it will not be too bad or too expensive.
K.C.’s Plumbing and Heating Ltd
Vancouver, BC V5N 2S7