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A collection of tips on how to be successful at plumbing makes the perfect starting point for a beginner. Below is just such a collection that will hopefully assist the eager novice into eventually becoming a pro when it comes to plumbing.
Frozen and bursting pipes from harsh winter weather is a problem that no-one wants, so plan now to winterize your exterior faucets and pipes against freezing conditions. A simple way to accomplish this is to find the exterior water shut-off valve located inside your home (often located in the basement). Turn off the water valve to stop water flow, and then open up the outside faucets to drain out any water that has collected. Be sure to turn off the outside water faucets tightly after the water has drained out. Take in any hoses you may have outside so they don't crack from the cold weather.
Make sure that your tool box is ready for any project you are preparing to do. The last thing you want is to be knee deep in a job only to find that you are missing the one tool you need to finish. Be sure to have various sizes of pipe wrenches that can be used to complete any job.
If water is backing up into multiple fixtures all over the house, it is no longer going to be effective for you to use chemicals or a small hand snake. This is evidence of a blockage in the main line, and you must contact a professional to take care of this problem for you.
If you live in an area that sees routine freezing temperatures, make sure you do something to keep your pipes from becoming frozen as well. There are a wide variety of ways you can keep your pipes from freezing, which will help you avoid damage to your home and costly repairs.
Many people wonder where the fruit flies are coming from. Each plumbing fixture has a self-sealed reserve that holds about two cups of water. If those pipes are broken or do not seal off, then odors and residue can cause fruit flies. It is recommended before anything to clean your pipes using bleach. If the flies come back, contact a professional.
If you are trying to decide on the material to use for your hose, stick with stainless steel. Stainless steel has a very solid construction and stays durable for many years, eliminating the need for replacement. Also, this material is less prone to bursting, which can yield severe plumbing issues.
Don't rely on drain cleaners too much. Drain cleaners contain very corrosive chemicals that can cause damage to your pipes if used too much. If your drain is clogged, hire a pro to figure out the problem.
One way to prevent water heater problems is to turn down the heat. As long as the water is still as hot as needed for showers and washing dishes, turning it down won't hurt anything, and will extend the life of the heater. Holding very hot water can corrode the inside.
While it is possible to do plumbing activities yourself, it is generally not recommended. If you are not sure of what you are doing, then you must hire a professional. This will help to insure you don't make a bigger mess of the small problem that your plumbing previously had.
If water is flooding your home, immediately switch off the main electrical power. If water comes into contact with any electrical components, it can become a fatal situation. Once the power is off, then deal with the flood water. Put your own and your family's personal safety first, and show each member of the family how to shut off the power.
If you find that your pipes have frozen during the cold winter months open all the faucets in your home. This lowers the water pressure for when the pipes thaw and the water is freely flowing again. Make sure to open all the faucets not just those that are frequently used.
Make sure your plumbing contractor has the proper insurance before letting them work in your home. This is a big problem with all types of construction contractors. They may have the proper licenses, but because of the high cost of insurance, they may not be properly insured and can end up on your homeowners policy if they get hurt.
A great way to save a few dollars is to add insulation to your hot water heater. Much of the energy required to heat the water in your home is the expense from keeping the water in the tank hot for when it is needed. Adding an extra layer of insulation can help reduce this cost.
Well, hopefully the aforementioned collection of tips were enough to give you a great start on what to do and expect when it comes to maintaining your own plumbing. This collection was carefully constructed to be an aid in your arsenal so that you can begin to hone your plumbing skills into having a great plumbing system.