As a homeowner, you are learning quickly that consistent maintenance is required to keep your home up and running. One of the greatest ways to cut down these costs in the future is prevention. In a perfect world, plumbing would be a one and done investment. Unfortunately it’s not, and if you don’t take care of routine maintenance you will be spending more in the long run. Fortunately, you don’t need to be a plumber to make sure you are taking the necessary steps toward making things run smoothly. While plumbing is technically one entire system, you need to keep in mind the many places it is utilized in your home – the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, sprinkler system etc. With this home plumbing checklist, you can keep on top of problems before they happen, saving you both time and money. These checks are recommended at least annually, but many find that being on the constant lookout for leaks and running through the checklist twice a year can be beneficial. Regular Visual Inspection This is the most simple, but commonly overlooked, maintenance routine. Being alert and aware of the outward signs of an inward plumbing problem can help keep larger issues at bay. From the moment your plumbing installation is complete you are going to want to be vigilant of any changes or abnormalities. This includes the following:
- Where exposed pipes are present be sure to look for any signs of leakage. For pipes which are confined to the walls or the foundation, look for watermarks coming through the wall, floor or ceiling in addition to any puddles.
- In these same areas, look for corrosion. If corrosion is taking place in your home, you will start to notice greenish stains around copper and brass pipes and valves. On steel pipes, the color will be more of an orange or yellow stain.
- Look in the tank of your toilet periodically. Do any of the parts look like they are broken or turning rust colored? If so, these should be replaced right away.
- Be on the lookout for cracked or broken flooring (tile) as this could be a result of water pooling beneath.
- Look for mildew near any of your plumbing. This is a sign that water is seeping through where it shouldn’t be.
- Inspect the water heater for signs of rust.
- Make sure there are no cracks in your washing machine hoses where water may be leaking.
- Look for areas of caulking that are no longer sealed. This will reveal where new caulking is needed.
- Check the area where the sewer pipes leave the home to make sure no leaking is taking place.
Test Each System In addition to visually inspecting your plumbing you will also want to take a more hands on approach. This will require simple testing to see if the systems are working correctly. This includes the following:
- Check the water pressure in your shower, kitchen, toilet etc. If you are noticing a decrease in water pressure you may have sediment building up. This can lead to problems down the road. In addition, remove your shower head to look for signs of sediment. This is often the easiest way to know if your low pressure issue is being caused by sediment build up.
- Test the drainage speed of your appliances. Is your tub not draining quickly? Is your kitchen sink backing up where the garbage disposal is located? These are all indicators that your plumbing system may be backed up or clogged with hair or other materials. Also if your drain makes any noise or bubbles up when water is going down the pipe, this is often indicative of a plumbing issue.
- Flush toilets and be sure the water is swirling down properly followed by replenishing the water to the appropriate level without delay.
- Make sure toilets are not wobbly or coming loose from the floor. If you can wiggle the entire toilet, this may be the sign of a leak. The area may need to be sealed once again in to the flooring to prevent future issues.
- Drain the water heater periodically to assure that there is not an abundance of sentiment present.
- Turn the handles on all faucets off completely and watch for drips or any other signs of leakage.
- Check the walls in the bathroom by pushing on them in the areas around the sink and tube to assure no water is leaking and causing structural damage.
The great thing about these tests is that you can do them yourself! If the task seems a bit daunting we will send a professional to check for any problem areas in your home. Call 480-726-1600 for more information! ABC Plumbing and Rooter Co. also offers a plumbing savings program (PSP). As a member you get the peace of mind that comes with knowing you can speak to an actual person, not a recording, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and you also will receive the following benefits:
- FREE initial health/safety evaluation (a $350 value)
- Priority service and scheduling for members
- 15% to 20% of all repairs
- Transferable membership to new address in service area
- Money back guarantee
- Upon start and each anniversary any single labor repair up to $250 at no charge.
Call 480-726-1600 and START SAVING on your plumbing!