Many people attempt to do their own plumbing in order to save money on repair costs. They often fail due to a lack of proper plumbing knowledge or by using the wrong tools for the job. If you would like to do your own plumbing without doing more harm than good, then read the tips in the following article.
Rigid copper is used for main water lines in many homes. You cannot bend rigid copper, so joints and tees must be soldered on. When soldering, always apply flux (also called soldering paste) to both surfaces. Flux retards oxidation when the copper is heated. Always use lead-free or nearly lead-free solder when sweating a copper joint.
On very cold winter nights, allow your faucets to trickle slightly, especially if your pipes are located in a crawlspace. The running water prevents the pipes from freezing as quickly as they would otherwise. You can catch the water and use it for other household needs to prevent wasting it.
Make sure you clean out overflow holes in your kitchen and bathroom sinks on a regular basis. These holes are intended to act as an emergency fail-safe to prevent spillage from a full sink, but if they are clogged they can’t do their job. You can clean out an overflow hole using the same techniques you would for a clogged drain.
You can check your toilet for leaks by adding a few drops of food coloring, Kool Aid or some coffee grounds to the water in the toilet’s tank (not the water in the bowl). Check the water in the bowl after a half hour or so. If any of the coloring agent is visible in the water in the bowl, the tank is leaking, and you will have to have it repaired.
Make sure you get a good recommendation or check the references before you hire a plumber. With good recommendations, it will assure that you are hiring an experienced plumber. If the experienced plumber is professional, he will have a fully stocked truck and be able to complete most small jobs in one visit.
Basic problems with toilets can be a quick fix for even the rawest amateur plumber and is worth attempting if you can take the time to research the problem. Seek out the necessary part or parts from your local hardware store and ask for support in how to properly install them.
If you are looking to get new piping in your home, try to stay away from copper ones. Copper tends to have problems, due to water and soil corrosion. It is also harder to install these kinds of pipes. Steel or lead pipes tend to offer the best quality and are the most durable.
Sometimes, the plumber is chosen by an insurance company without your input, but you can look them up online anyway. Take advantage of customer feedback on your insurance carriers website. This will give you a greater level of comfort than going into it blind.
Every now and then, you should pour a large bucket of water down your basement floor drain. This will help to keep the trap seal full and prevent certain gases from coming up into your home. Also, be sure that you have your floor drain checked by a professional every few years.
The most important plumbing tip you need to know is — how to turn off your home’s main water supply. Once the water is shut off, you can investigate problems and figure out how to resolve them. Walk the family through the house and show them where all the water shut-off valves are, and how to use them.
Make sure you shut off your main system before leaving your house for a few weeks. The water will stay in the pipes, but this should prevent any further damages in case a leak starts while you are away. Check that your shut-off valve is working properly before you leave.
To compare the quality of your pipes or sewers over time, create a video for documentation purposes. Several months later, make the same video so that you can see if there are any new cracks or holes that require fixing. This can serve as a great way to analyze your infrastructure.
To make sure your sump pump will run in an emergency, routinely test it by adding several buckets of water into the sump pit. The pump should turn on, remove the water and turn off with ease. Do this regularly, especially if your sump pump doesn’t run that often, to ensure it will work when needed most.
If you live in an environment where winters get cold, it is crucial that you prepare your pipes for the winter. Leaving pipes as is can cause them to freeze which can create severe plumbing issues. Have your faucet open a little bit when it is really cold to prevent frozen pipes.
A great way to save a few dollars is to add insulation to your hot water heater. Much of the energy required to heat the water in your home is the expense from keeping the water in the tank hot for when it is needed. Adding an extra layer of insulation can help reduce this cost.
While you may not be able to tackle every problem that comes up, you can surely feel more confident about dealing with some of the basic stuff. Take any situation step by step, and you will find that it’s not as difficult as you may have thought.
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