Some plumbing maintenance tasks can be done independently, but others may require the assistance of a professional. The best way to ensure the safety of your plumbing system is to have a plumbing company like Wagner Mechanical perform preventative maintenance. Preventive maintenance includes identifying and addressing leaks and avoiding putting acidic or reactive substances down your sink drains.
While reactive maintenance may seem like the best solution, it can cost up to eight times as much. In addition, the cost of unscheduled maintenance can mean lost money and productivity. To avoid these situations, you should invest in preventative maintenance instead of reactive maintenance.
By using preventative maintenance, you can prevent many problems that can arise during a plumbing system’s lifecycle. This preventative approach will also help you save money in the short and long term. By ensuring that your system is in great condition, you will not have to pay for costly repairs.
If you aren’t sure what preventative maintenance consists of, consider hiring a service provider who offers regular preventive maintenance services. These professionals can adjust the schedules based on usage and engine hours.
Identifying and Addressing Leaks
Leaks in a plumbing system are a common cause of damage to homes. Leaks account for $10 billion in insurance claims every year. And while you may not see them, even a small leak can waste thousands of gallons of water. It is why you must identify and repair them as quickly as possible.
Water leaks can lead to high utility bills and a smelly, musty house. They can also be difficult to detect, especially if they are located inside the wall. However, there are ways to find and repair them without calling a plumber. Using your ears, you may be able to pinpoint the source of the leak, which can make the work faster.
Leaks can also result in a drop in water pressure. Your water bill will rise and fall over time depending on the amount of water you use. If your bill suddenly increases or drops significantly, you may leak. In addition, a sudden decrease in water pressure can indicate a serious leak. It may be caused by a blocked pipe or a tree root.
Protecting Pipes From the Cold
In the coldest months, pipes can freeze and burst, making it important to take steps to prevent damage. For example, keeping cabinet doors under sinks open is important to allow warm air to circulate beneath them. Similarly, keep the faucet drip running to avoid freezing pipes. It is also important to install insulation around the pipes to prevent water from escaping and freezing.
It is also important to protect exposed pipes. If possible, wrap them in insulation and use thermostatically controlled heat cables. Again, it’s best to use approved products and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Also, make sure to seal any air leaks around pipes. While this may seem like an extra step, it will prevent your pipes from freezing.
Even if you don’t have an emergency, frozen pipes can be a costly problem. This problem can occur for various reasons, from cracks and breaks to mold and structural damage. Fortunately, preventing frozen pipes is easy if you follow some basic steps.
Avoiding Acidic or Reactive Substances
Avoid pouring acidic or reactive substances down the sink drain, as they will damage the pipes and make it more difficult for your drains to drain properly. Baking soda and vinegar are two common alternatives to chemical drain cleaners. They can be used in combination with water to clean your sink drain. The baking soda forms a base for the vinegar’s acidic reaction and will break down clogs in your sink drain.
Acids such as sulfuric acid should be neutralized before pouring them down the drain. They may also be disposed of in larger amounts. The pH of these acids must be between 5.5 and 9.0 before they can be disposed of in the sanitary sewer.
Other substances that should never be flushed down the sink include hydrochloric acid and muriatic acid. Both these substances can cause serious injuries if misused. They should only be used by licensed plumbers.