6 Ways to Prevent Plumbing Emergencies

If you live in a house, you probably have at least one plumbing fixture somewhere in the building. What you may not know, however, is that if you don’t take care of your plumbing properly, you could end up with an emergency situation on your hands. 

Here are some of the most common plumbing emergencies and how to prevent them from happening to you. 

1) Tips for Reducing Water Usage

Lowering your water consumption is a great way to prevent plumbing emergencies—and it’s not as hard as you might think. By installing low-flow shower heads and taking shorter showers, you can lower your water usage without sacrificing any of your shower’s quality. If you’re worried about conserving hot water, there are several innovative ways that you can lower your water temperature while still staying warm enough. You could also take measures to limit moisture around your house; if there’s less humidity in the air, you won’t have such a high risk of mold or mildew. 

2) Tips for Preventing Frozen Pipes

In cold weather, your pipes can freeze and burst. Protect your pipes by insulating any exposed piping, especially if you live in a climate where temperatures drop below freezing regularly. Allow hot water to drip from faucets that are not in use, especially overnight and when you are away on vacation or out of town.

Run a trickle of warm water during cold weather, using a timer so it turns off automatically. Be sure to keep all doors closed when heating rooms with a space heater. If your home has crawl spaces, make sure ventilation is adequate to prevent moisture build-up around pipes. Use strainers at sinks and bathtubs to prevent loose hair from clogging drains; clean them frequently. Never put cooking oils down drains, as they will congeal in cold weather and cause clogs. Don’t put food down drains unless you have an installed garbage disposal.

3) The Do's and Don'ts of Toilet Repairs

Whether it’s a leaky faucet or a backed-up toilet, small plumbing problems can turn into big ones if you ignore them for too long. The first step in preventing major plumbing emergencies is to familiarize yourself with common causes of leaks and keep your wits about you when something isn’t right.

Earlier Diagnosis, Better Service: Toilets, sinks and showers are most likely to fail during cold weather months because that’s when indoor water usage increases as people heat their homes with water.

4) Bathroom Renovations to Avoid Traps

Don’t let a renovation be your undoing. For example, in our bathroom, we have one of those so-called comfort height toilets (the bowl is at about 17 inches). It has an automatic toilet seat that flips up and down via a lever installed on the side of it. This was nice when we were kids because we could do it ourselves.

However, now that we are adults and especially given our back issues, it is a potential nightmare for us if we were to fall getting into or out of the bathroom. There are no grab bars next to these types of toilets either so there is really no good way for us as older adults with limited mobility/strength issues to get in and out without some type of issue occurring!

5) Repair Leaks Right Away

Water may not seem like a huge deal when it comes out of your faucet or toilet, but small leaks in pipes can lead to bigger problems. If you let them go too long, you risk an emergency situation that could be costly and time-consuming. To prevent plumbing emergencies down the road, repair all visible leaks as soon as possible—including those on toilets and faucets—and schedule annual maintenance for appliances like washing machines and dishwashers. 

A Few Final Words

Some people don’t take a proactive approach when it comes to plumbing. They wait until something is wrong before they reach out for help—which means plumbing emergencies are even more expensive than they need to be. To prevent emergency plumbing situations, schedule routine maintenance and try your best to catch small problems early on. Your wallet will thank you later!

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