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Plumbing Preparation for the Summer Months

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

Most home plumbing systems withstand a heavy workload during the summer months due to more showers, extra laundry and a barbecue or two. All of this water usage can tax the system, especially if you add summer house guests into the mix. Summer plumbing preparation can alleviate this burden with routine maintenance and inspection. This article will show you how a little preparation can prevent the inconvenience associated with unexpected plumbing repairs.

Service the Septic Tank

If you have a home that relies on a private septic tank system, summer plumbing preparation is even more important. The septic tank system is responsible for treating all of the household waste and sewage. If it fails, you may face the difficult prospect of expensive repairs, some of which can turn into thousands of dollars. Annual septic tank maintenance and cleaning is one of the most crucial aspects of maintaining your home’s plumbing system.

Inspect Plumbing

Temperature swings between winter and summer months can wreak havoc on your plumbing system. Fluctuations in temperatures cause your plumbing pipes to contract and expand. This can lead to cracked pipes or minor leaks within the system. A plumbing inspection will identify problems so they can be addressed before causing any major damage.

Service the Water Heater

Don’t forget your water heater during summer plumbing preparation. The water heater should be thoroughly inspected by a licensed plumbing contractor. A typical service call includes flushing the system, adjusting the thermostat, testing the T&P valve and making sure the appliance is operating at peak performance.

Inspect Household Plumbing Fixtures

Check both indoor and outdoor plumbing fixtures for leaks. These include faucets, toilets, bathtubs, sink drains and appliances such as dishwashers, garbage disposals and pool pumps. Ignoring even the smallest of leaks can cost you money in home repairs and other damages. Water damage ruins cabinetry, woodwork, drywall flooring and invites the growth of mold and mildew, a known health hazard. Should the latter occur, you can expect a hefty bill to rid your home of this toxic substance.

Have Your Gutters Cleaned

Remember to have your gutters cleaned. Many people don’t realize that a home’s gutter system is considered part of the plumbing. A gutter system plays a substantial role in protecting your home from water damage. Gutters are designed to channel rainwater away from your home’s foundation. After a long winter, leaves, dirt, roof material and other debris can accumulate inside of the gutter system. When this happens, water is no longer able to flow freely through the system and away from your home. The gutters can also hold water or overflow which can damage roofing, roof structure and facial boards, leading to unnecessary repairs.

For answers to your plumbing questions, contact The Pink Plumber today.

5 Spots to Check for Plumbing Leaks

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

While it might not always be at the top of your to-do list, checking your home for plumbing leaks on a regular basis can help prevent major problems down the road. And fixing those little leaks can save you big bucks on your water bill.

The numbers related to water lost due to plumbing leaks is staggering. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says an average household can waste more than 10,000 gallons of water a year just from leaks. That’s enough for 270 loads of laundry. If you fix your leaks, you’ll save, on average, 10 percent on your water bill.

It is important that you always examine your water bill. If a family of four is using more than 12,000 gallons a month, there is most likely a leak somewhere. What’s more, about 10 percent of all homes in the United States have leaks that waste more than 90 gallons of water a day. Many plumbing leaks are easy to fix yourself. You’ll just need a couple tools you probably already have around the house.

The best time to check for leaks is during the winter months.

The places that are the most likely culprits for plumbing leaks include:

  • The faucet. It might not seem like much, but if a drop of water is leaking from your faucet each second, you’ll end up with 3,000 gallons of water in a year’s time. To fix a faucet leak, check the washers and gaskets. If they’re worn, replace them. If you’re replacing your faucet, replace it with one with the WaterSense Label.
  • Shower heads. If your shower head is leaking, it can probably be fixed by tightening with a wrench and using pipe tape. Ten drips in a minute adds up to 500 gallons a year — the amount of water used to clean 60 loads of dishes in the dishwasher.
  • Toilets. An easy way to check for toilet leaks is by placing a drop of food coloring into the tank. If the color appears in the bowl within 15 minutes without flushing, then you know you have a leak. If you discover a leak, there’s a good chance it’s a worn out rubber flapper valve. They tend to wear out over time and are a simple, inexpensive fix.
  • Irrigation system. Once you’re safely out of the frigid winter season, check your irrigation system for any damage arising from frost or freezing. Also, look for broken sprinkler heads, weak pressure, wet or soggy areas of your lawn, and increasing water bills in summer. These are all signs of a possible leak in your irrigation system.
  • Hoses. Is there a leak or spray of water when you connect your outdoor garden hose to the spigot? If so, replace the washer and use pipe tape and a wrench to seal and tighten the connection.

For answers to your questions about plumbing leaks or any other plumbing issue, contact the Pink Plumber today.

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