Plumbing systems are one of those things that are easy to avoid thinking about until there's a problem. In reality, the plumbing system of your home is quite straightforward and simple. It's not necessary to have a plumber's license to have a basic understanding of your home's plumbing, and doing so could help you to avoid the following five plumbing mistakes that could lead to much more expensive and time-consuming repairs.
1. Vent Abuse
Vents serve a valuable need in your home plumbing system, and without them working properly, you would quickly find yourself afflicted with the unpleasant aroma of sewer gases. These vents utilize air pressure to prevent the city sewer lines' noxious odors from entering your home, so keeping the vent free of obstructions is vital. Plumbers are often called to check out a bad sewer odor in a home, only to find that someone judged the plumbing vent to be a perfect conduit for cable or satellite TV cables. Only air should be placed in these pipes.
2. Down the Drain
Clogged drains can happen anywhere, but the most preventable could be the kitchen sink drain. While it may seem a convenient method of disposing of food particles and grease, even small quantities can build up over time and cause problems. Used cooking oil can present a dilemma, but the myth that you can run very hot water while pouring oil down the drain is just that, a myth. Eventually the oil cools and solidifies, blocking the drain and causing messy back-ups.
3. Disposal Don'ts
While using a disposal for food waste is better than simply washing it down the drain, you can still run afoul of the pipes under the sink if you aren't careful. A properly operating disposal can macerate large chunks of food, making it more easily flushed through the plumbing. The problem is the tiny pieces of food that your disposal misses and which end up clogging your drain. Be careful with small-scale food waste like flour, bread, fibrous veggies, fruit and veggie peelings, and rice. Consider using the trash instead of the disposal.
4. Cleaner Woes
Drain cleaners that can be purchased by laymen are not a favorite of professional plumbers because of the corrosion they can cause inside pipes. They also make for a dangerous cleaning experience when you inevitably end up calling in a professional, due to the caustic nature of chemicals used in drain cleaners.
5. Flushing Other Items
If you knew that the pipe leading from your toilet to the first joint was only a few inches in diameter, you might hesitate to flush anything but small amounts of toilet paper down that drain. Everything you flush must make it past that narrow first joint, or you will find yourself with a nasty clog.
Call a professional plumber, like Doctor Fix-It, for valuable help and advice about your home plumbing system.Share