You need to have some knowledge of what to look for and expect from doing your own basement waterproofing and plumbing. You need to know what resources are available to you and who can provide you answers as to what you need for your future plumbing jobs. The tips below can help you with how to start.
If your pipes make squeaking and hammering noises, it may be very simple to fix. If pipes are exposed, you must anchor them. You may need to hire a professional to help with any projects involving pipes that are hidden in the floors, ceiling or walls.
Look closely at your toilets several times throughout the year. Check to see if there are any leaks that you may not have noticed; you can do this by placing five or six drops of food coloring in the tank. If there is a leak, the color will seep into the bowl within half an hour. This process will help you catch a small problem before it gets too out of control.
To help you find a good plumber, you should get recommendations from people whom you trust. Asking a friend or a neighbor is usually more trustworthy than picking a random plumber out of the phone book. You need a competent plumber, otherwise you could be in for a much bigger problem down the road.
Install screen traps or drain covers on all of your sinks and tub drains. Most home plumbing calls are about clogged pipes. These can be caused by debris, especially hair, washing down the drains. Putting in a trap means that you can clean this debris off before it ends up in the pipes.
Check your fixtures to ensure the overflow holes are clear of debris and mineral build-up. Overflow holes divert water when a sink starts to fill up. That doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it can be a big problem if there is a clog. Clear out your sink’s overflow holes every so often, while checking for any other problems or necessary repairs.
Some people have problems with their plumbing system in that the pipes sweat and drip condensation. You do not have to hire a plumber to take care of this nuisance. You can purchase self-adhesive drip tape from your local hardware store. This drip tape will insulate your “sweating” pipes which are dripping with moisture built up from condensation. To make sure the tape sticks firmly, dry the pipe thoroughly before applying the tape.
Make sure you get a good recommendation or check the references before you hire a plumber. With good recommendations, it will assure that you are hiring an experienced plumber. If the experienced plumber is professional, he will have a fully stocked truck and be able to complete most small jobs in one visit.
If you want avoid future issues with your toilet, don’t treat it like a trash can. Do not flush sanitary pads, paper towels, cotton balls, tissues, diapers or other materials, as these items do not dissolve and could cause clogs. Additionally, use the minimum amount of toilet paper required to clean up after you are done.
You can check your toilet for leaks by adding a few drops of food coloring, Kool Aid or some coffee grounds to the water in the toilet’s tank (not the water in the bowl). Check the water in the bowl after a half hour or so. If any of the coloring agent is visible in the water in the bowl, the tank is leaking, and you will have to have it repaired.
Have you tried patching your pipe with the store-bought patching kits only to have that section of your plumbing continue leaking? Replacing the damaged pipe is a more permanent solution than patching. First, you must shut off the main water valve, and drain the water from the damaged section. Cut out the damaged section of the copper pipe, leaving about an inch of extra pipe on both sides of the damaged area. Remove corrosion from inside the pipes with a wire brush. Apply flux to the replacement pipe and the remaining pipe. Slide the piece of replacement pipe into place with couplings. Apply solder all around the joint, and use a propane torch to solder the replacement section into place.
Make sure everyone that lives in your house knows where to find and use the main water shut off valve in case there is a burst pipe emergency. This is especially important if you live in an area where your pipes may freeze. Take a moment to show your family members where the valve is and how to properly shut it off.
If your toilet gets clogged, your plunger is not fixing it, and your water level inside of the toilet appears low, you can sometimes fix the problem by dumping warm water into your toilet at waist level (or maybe even a little higher). Do this every time the water level gets too low.
During the winter, preventing frozen pipes when you live in a small dwelling can be something good to know. Frozen pipes will not only stop your flow of water but can crack and damage pipes. By running a little water out of every faucet during the coldest parts of the day, you can avoid this.
As you have seen in the above tips, there is a lot of knowledge you can acquire before starting to do your own plumbing and it’s this knowledge that can help you with your future plumbing jobs. Do everything you must to find out what you need to get started.