What’s Involved in Plumbing Maintenance?
When most people make a list of new year’s resolutions and things they’d like to do this year, they probably don’t put plumbing maintenance anywhere on it. The fact is, it’s easy to forget that the home’s plumbing system even needs maintenance at all. After all, if the faucets aren’t dripping and the toilets aren’t clogging, why mess with the plumbing?
But that’s just it - maintenance helps ensure that these issues (and many others) don’t come up in the first place. The pipes, fixtures, and water-using appliances in a home see a lot of use, so without maintenance, they can develop a host of problems as they succumb to wear and tear. So this article will explain what plumbing maintenance entails, why it’s so important, and how homeowners can keep up with it - both on their own and with the help of a pro.
Cleaning the Drains
One of the most important aspects of plumbing maintenance is drain cleaning. Over time, hair, soap scum, oils, and other gunk can collect in the home’s drain pipes. This not only leads to the formation of clogs but can also cause unpleasant odors and encourage mold growth, so it’s necessary to clean the drains periodically to remove this nasty buildup.
Homeowners can do a little DIY drain cleaning every once in a while by pouring equal parts baking soda and vinegar (typically about ½ cup each) down the drain, letting the mixture sit for 15 minutes to an hour, then pouring hot water down the drain. In general, it’s best not to use chemical drain cleaners, as these can damage the plumbing, produce noxious fumes, and kill vital bacteria in septic systems.
DIY drain cleaning will go a long way in keeping drains clear, but it’s still best to hire a professional to perform preventative drain cleaning every year or two. This typically involves the use of a hydrojetting machine, which can wash away debris and grime as far down as the main sewer line using a special high-pressure water hose.
Scheduling Professional Plumbing Maintenance
It's a good idea for homeowners to schedule annual maintenance with a professional plumber. They will thoroughly inspect the system, often using special video equipment, to find any signs of leaks, clogs, or corrosion and determine the best solution. They will also typically check the water pressure and adjust it if need be, secure any loose pipes with brackets to prevent vibration, and even test the home’s fixtures and values to see if they are working correctly.
Professional maintenance can help homeowners save money on leaks and costly plumbing emergencies, extend the life of the plumbing system, and increase the value of the home (plumbing systems typically account for around 10% of a home’s value) - so it’s a service that no homeowner can afford to do without!
Maintaining the Water Heater
Routine maintenance is also required for the water heater. This includes flushing the storage tank to remove any sediment buildup, testing the temperature and pressure relief valve, and checking/replacing the anode rod (an anti-corrosion device inside the tank). Professionals will also clean gas burners, check gas lines for leaks, test safety devices such as the thermocouple, and inspect and clean the exhaust flue.
There are many benefits of professional water heater maintenance. Not only does it extend the life of the unit and ensure that it’s operating at peak efficiency (both of which help save money), but it also brings peace of mind from knowing that all work is being performed safely and according to code!
About Quahog Plumbing
Since opening its doors 15 years ago, Quahog Plumbing has quickly become one of Somerset’s most trusted and highly-rated plumbers. Their licensed and trustworthy technicians are available for 24-hour emergency service and always work efficiently to get homeowners back to their routines as quickly as possible. They offer same-day service, flat rate pricing, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee on every job. Call them today for plumbing maintenance, drain cleaning, or water heater maintenance in Somerset, MA.