Like any part of your home, keeping your plumbing in top condition takes care and attention from time to time. We’ll all occasionally experience some issues with the plumbing in our home, but by knowing what to look for and how to prevent problems from occurring in the first place, you can keep your pipes in good shape!
Here are a few tips on how to take proper care of the plumbing throughout your home.
Don’t Put It Down The Sink If You Can Bin It
Nobody likes dealing with leftover food whilst washing the dishes! Of course, we all make sure that the bulk of our leftovers go in the bin, but what about that stray bit of spaghetti, leftover soup or unused ketchup at the side of your plate?
Whilst some foods might go down your plughole without too much trouble, chances are that they’re not making it all the way out of the pipes. Even less solid foods such as soups, ice-cream, condiments, etc. can block the plumbing, so it’s best to avoid letting these wash down your sink wherever possible.
It might not be pleasant touching wet, leftover food, but it’s certainly a lot less unpleasant than dealing with a backed-up sink! It’s always best to make sure everything goes in the bin.
Look After Your Toilet
Toilets tend to experience back-ups and clogs more frequently than other plumbing in your home – and, unfortunately, they’re usually the most unpleasant to encounter!
By taking better care of your toilet, you can prevent these issues from occurring anywhere near as frequently. You should aim to clean your toilet properly every week if you can, flushing a small amount of thick bleach and hot water down, as well as using a plunger to unclog any blockages that may have occurred over the last seven days.
It goes without saying, but you should also make sure nobody in your house is trying to get rid of non-flushable items in the toilet, too. While most brands of toilet paper, when not overused, can get down the toilet fairly easily, most other disposable toiletries can’t. This includes make-up wipes, dental floss, cotton buds, sanitary products – if it’s not toilet paper, it’s best to just throw it in the bin.
Prevent Shower Blockages
Blocked drains can play havoc with your shower! In fact, hair is the most common cause of clogged drains within your bathroom.
It’s inevitable that loose hair will find it’s way down an open plughole in your shower whilst you’re giving it your usual shampoo and condition, but there are certain things that you can do to prevent it from becoming a problem.
One of the simplest solutions is to purchase a drain guard for your shower plughole. These devices don’t cost a lot and are widely available online, so it’s a small, easy preventative measure you can take, but will make a huge difference.
These devices feature holes or mesh which allows water to get down the drain, but prevents anything else escaping down there with it. Simply place it over the plughole and clean it off after every use of the shower!
Getting into this small and simple habit will save you time, inconvenience and money in the long run.
Flush Your Drains Often
Make a point of flushing your drains regularly, at least twice a month if you can.
Up to now, you might feel that flushing your toilet with household bleach has been doing a fairly good job of keeping blockages at bay, though this isn’t always the case. Bleach is ideal for cleaning toilets, sinks and baths, but it isn’t as effective in clearing blockages as you may have been led to believe – in many cases, there’s actually a much more simple solution.
A good way to ensure you’re flushing your drains effectively is to fill a jug full of hot water and a little vinegar, then pour this down each drain in your house. Repeating this step twice with each drain will maximise the positive effects of this process.
As already mentioned, doing this twice a month should keep blockages at bay – if you can do it once a week, that’s even better!
It might seem like a small measure, but doing this regularly (alongside the other preventative measures listed above) is a great way of stopping your drains from building clogs and blockages over time.
Take Care Of Any Recurring Problems
If you’re looking to take better care of your plumbing, then it’s best to call someone out to ensure that you don’t already have plumbing issues which need fixing.
Back-ups, clogs and blockages may only rear their head every so often, but they build up over time! By calling out a plumber to take a look at any problems that might have already developed and having them fixed, you can start with a clean slate (well, clean pipes!) and ensure that no new problems start building up.
Even if you haven’t experienced a backed-up toilet, sink or shower for a while, it’s certainly worth having a qualified plumber check your pipes and drains out for you to make sure that this isn’t an issue you could find yourself facing in the near future. It’s always cheaper to have a problem taken care of before it gets any worse!
Neil Pyne Plumbing & Heating are well-established, with over 30 years professional plumbing experience. Why not give us a call and let us check that the plumbing in your home is in good condition and fix any problems before they occur?