If you are like most Americans, fall is one of the busiest times of the year in your household. That means your plumbing is likely busier too. This is the time to be proactive and prevent common issues that arise. Follow these tips for plumbing issues and avoid the cost and inconvenience of clogs, leaks and other plumbing problems.
1. Check Outside Fixtures for Leaks
Check any outside faucets, hose connections and even the sprinklers for leaks that may have occurred. Turn the spigot on and observe for dripping — or gushing — water around all connections. What may seem like a minor leak now can quickly become a major issue. Making sure hoses, faucets and sprinklers are turned off for the season can save you headaches in the winter.
2. Check Inside Fixtures
Visually inspect all inside fixtures from the faucet in the kitchen sink to the fittings around your water heater and dishwasher. Look for any signs of moisture, such as rust and corrosion, or wet spots on the floor or surrounding areas. Fixing minor leaks now will help avoid a gusher in the middle of the night that can lead to structural damage to your home.
3. Check the Toilet
Your toilet likely worked overtime during the summer when the kids were home and your family was entertaining guests. Look for obvious leaks around the bottom of the toilet, but don't stop there. A running or leaking toilet tank is also common. To find out if your toilet tank is secretly draining into the bowl, put a teaspoon of food coloring in the tank and check the water in the bowl in 30 minutes. If the water in the bowl has taken on the hue of the color you added, you have a leak. Check the float and valve in the tank and adjust or replace it if necessary if you are the DIY kind. Otherwise, call your plumber to resolve the issue.
4. Watch the Garbage Disposal
It is easy to overwork the garbage disposal when cleaning up after family gatherings and cookouts. While your disposal is great for handling leftover bits of food, it isn't designed to replace the trash bin or compost pile. Avoid stringy material, like corn husks, celery and banana peels, and all forms of meat, fat and bones. Make sure guests and children know which items can safely go into the garbage disposal and always run cold water when it is in use.
5. Check the Sump Pump
If your basement is prone to flooding, be sure to check the sump pump. To check if the sump pump is functioning properly, pour a bucket of water in the pit. This should activate the pump and drain the water away. If your sump pump doesn't turn on (make sure the electrical supply is turned on) or pumps inefficiently, it is time to call for service.
To learn more about common plumbing issues, visit our blog or contact us at Amanda Plumbing Sewer & Drain today for any of your plumbing needs.