It's far too common for plumbing problems to go undetected until they lead to major leaks or sky-high water bills. But in most cases, the early signs of a plumbing issue are there. You just have to know where and how to look for them! One way to ensure plumbing problems are detected early is by conducting your own plumbing inspection every few months. This entire process can be completed within a few hours, so tackle it this weekend! Here's a checklist:
Check for slow drains.
You'd probably notice if a drain you used all the time was slow, but what about drains only the kids use or those in the guest bathrooms? Take a minute to run water down every drain and flush each toilet. If you do find a slow drain, you can usually clear the clog before it gets too bad by pouring some boiling water down it. Follow this up with a few cups of vinegar if the drain is also smelly.
Look for leaky faucets.
A faucet leak raises your water bill unnecessarily. While you may not notice an extra $5 or $10 on your bill from a drippy faucet, there's no reason to keep paying it blindly! When you turn on each faucet to check the drains, also make sure the faucet is not leaking. If you do spot a leak, try tightening the grommets to stop the leak. You might need to disassemble the faucet and replace the rubber washers. In the worst case scenario, you might need to replace the faucet.
Check that your pipes are insulated.
You'll pay dearly for poorly insulated pipes once the winter hits and your pipes freeze! Take a look at every exposed section of pipe you can see. Make sure there's a layer of insulation around it. If you find an un-insulated pipe, you can purchase a length of foam insulation at the hardware store. Pop it around your pipe and secure it with a piece of electrical tape.
Look for mineral deposits.
Check around faucets to see if you spot a lot of mineral deposits and lime scale. If you do see deposits in these areas, this is an indication that minerals are also building up inside of your pipes. Eventually, this will lead to a serious clog that can really only be fixed by replacing a section of the pipe. Luckily, when you catch it early, you have the option of having a water softener installed. This device will remove minerals from the water so they don't continually build up in your pipes. If you have any questions for any step of inspecting your plumbing, visit a plumber at a business like AAA Home Services.
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