Handy Plumbing Tips for Everyone
Resolve Common Plumbing Problems
You do not need to know a lot about plumbing to handle minor home plumbing repairs. These simple tricks can help you solve a few common problems without fancy equipment or a high price tag.
If you struggle when pulling free your kitchen sink sprayer hose from its base, then chances are it is getting caught on the shutoff valves under the sink. To smooth things over, wrap ½ inch foam pipe insulation around the pipes and valves; secure it with duct tape if it slips. You can get more than enough pipe insulation for a job like this for about $3 at home improvement centers or your local hardware store.
Hot water can cause copper pipes to expand, which makes them rub against the joists and hangers that hold them in place. This is usually what causes the creaking, clanking, or banging you hear coming from your home’s plumbing. You can purchase a few sheets of adhesive-backed felt at any hardware store, cut it into strips, and wrap it around pipes wherever they come into contact with hangers and joists to dampen the noise.
Shop Vac Solution
Do not use a plunger when trying to remove large, hard objects from toilets and sinks, since you may end up pushing the object further down the pipe and doing even more damage. Instead, use a wet/dry shop vacuum to remove standing water and whatever is blocking the drain.
If your plumbing is out of commission during a remodeling project, there is no need to run around the neighborhood looking for a bathroom to use. Before your water is cut off, fill a couple of gallon buckets with water. After you use the toilet, pour a bucket into the bowl to flush. This method works just as well as pulling the toilet handle, though the bowl will not refill after you are done. You will get one flush per gallon of water so plan accordingly if you have a big family, or you will be without the use of a toilet for a while.
If you can, take pictures of framed walls, ceilings, and floors before they are covered with sheetrock, flooring, and insulation. Save the pictures so that the next time you need to know where a hidden pipe is, you can just refer to them.
If you have a blocked drain, you may need to remove the drain trap to get at the blockage. Before you do this, plunge the drain a few times to push water out of the trap so that there is less mess when you take the pipes apart. For double sinks, plunge the side opposite the one you will be checking to balance air pressure.
See in the Dark
Before you start probing around behind walls, in ceilings, or under flooring, take some pictures with your digital camera or cell phone. This is a great and safe way to see what there is in dark, tight spaces.
Contact Horizon Services
With over 20 years of service experience, we have helped thousands of homeowners in the Delaware, Southeastern Pennsylvania, and Maryland areas with their plumbing needs. Our team of plumbing professionals consists of some of the most experienced and most qualified plumbers working today in the Delaware Valley. These are top-notch plumbing technicians who can accurately diagnose and quickly fix any and all plumbing problems. Plumbing emergencies are our specialty!.