Avoiding Plumbing Repairs - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Avoiding Plumbing Repairs

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  1. Fix leaky faucets promptly. In addition to wasting about 20 gallons of water a day, a leak can ruin your faucet set.
  2. Do not use caustic liquid drain openers on a drain that is completely clogged. It can severely damage your pipes.
  3. Periodically drain 5-6 gallons of water from your water heater. This removes sediment from the bottom of the tank to increase heating efficiency and prolong tank life.
  4. Annually test the temperature pressure relief valve.  Lift or depress the handle and drain water from the overflow pipe.  If water doesn't drain out, shut off the water to the heater, open a hot water faucet elsewhere in your home, and call a professional to replace the valve.
  5. Water Heater Safety Tip.  If steam or boiling water ever comes out of the valve or the hot water faucets, shut the heater off at once. If you ever hear a rumbling sound, assume the heater is overheating and turn it off.
  6. Wrap outdoor or crawl space pipes with electric heat tape or insulation to prevent freezing.   

Kitchen & Bath

  1. Do not rinse fats or cooking oils down the drain. Liquid fats solidify in the cold drains pipes and create clogs.
  2. To extend the life of your garbage disposal: Use plenty of cold water when running; don't over load; never dispose of bones, corn husks, or stringy fibrous material; never use a caustic drain opener; and always use tongs or pliers to free objects from the disposal - don't use your hands.
  3. Check under sinks for moisture or small leaks.  Leaks under sinks should be repaired quickly to avoid damage to cabinets and floors.
  4. Use a strainer in bathroom drains.  This will prevent hair and soap pieces from clogging drains.
  5. Make sure overflow holes on tubs and vanity are clear and open to prevent water damage to floors and ceilings.