Have you been facing issues with your water lines recently? If you’re not sure what’s causing them, it will be a hassle to fix and maintain your home’s water lines.
When you ignore the water lines in your house and don’t clean and maintain them, you will face potentially costly problems such as water damage to the house.
To give you a little nudge in this matter, here are eight tips that you can use to take care of the water lines in your home and avoid issues in the future.
1. Drain the Water Heater
Sometimes, when you turn the hot water tap on, you may see that the water is flowing slowly, or may be sputtering. This may indicate that you have air in your water lines.
To avoid problems like this, make sure that you regularly check your water heater and clean any sediment deposition. Here’s how you can do it:
- Switch off the water heater and allow it to cool.
- Close the cold water valve.
- Locate where the drain valve is, connect a hose to it, place the hose outdoors or in a tub, and open the drain valve.
- Release the pressure valve.
- Let all the water from the heater drain out.
- Open the cold water valve and flush the sediment by running it for a few minutes.
- Close the drain valve and pressure valve, take off the hose, turn the power back on, and restore the system.
2. Water Needs Treatment Too!
You may live in an area with hard water. This water contains magnesium and calcium that can create scales in the pipe, which can damage the water lines and anything that the water touches. So how can you avoid it?
The most common solution is installing a water softening system. This will filter out the hard minerals. As a result, the water will flow better, maintenance will be easier, your clothes will be in better condition, and dishes and glasses will not stain.
A few other ways to soften hard water includes using a water conditioner, white distilled vinegar, and using a washing soda or water conditioner for laundry.
3. Avoid Harsh Chemical Treatments
Clogged pipes can be very frustrating. You may think of resorting to chemical cleaners to unclog them fast. Avoid doing this as much as possible!
Chemical drain cleaners can eat away the water pipes, causing massive damage. It’s not just the pipes that face the damage. The chemicals can negatively affect your health, causing chemical poisoning that can lead to chest pain, severe abdominal pain, vision loss, etc.
To avoid these, you can try a few DIY methods, such as using vinegar and plunging or snaking out clogs with certain tools. If nothing else helps, call a plumber for professional cleaning.
4. Use Garbage Disposal Correctly
Clogged garbage disposal is a headache. Not everything should go down that path! Avoid throwing away fats, solid food items, and anything fibrous in the garbage disposal as they can clog it. Also, never throw away toiletries in there!
Make sure to throw solid matter in the trash can. Always run cold water down the disposal with a little bit of dish soap, and avoid using hot water at all costs.
Always grind food scraps with a strong flow of cold water. To keep the disposal odor-free, toss in citrus and some ice.
5. Schedule Plumbing Maintenance
It’s always a good idea to do scheduled monthly or annual maintenance. This can help maintain your water lines at home properly by identifying early problems so that you can solve them as quickly as possible. This will help prevent water-borne diseases, keep the water heater and pressure in check, and keep your water bills low.
6. Replace Old Pipes
How long your water pipes will last depends on what the pipes are made of. Pipes made of PVC or galvanized steel will last anywhere between 20-100 years, though it may be extended if you’ve maintained them well. So, what should you do after that? Replace the pipes!
Yes, your water pipes need replacement, otherwise, you’ll have discolored water, low water pressure, and leaks. If those leaks get bigger, your home will face severe damage!
If you live in an old building, it’s better to replace the fittings with PVC pipes while you’re performing home renovations.
7. Regulate Water Pressure
Have you been monitoring your home water pressure? If the pressure is higher than it should be, it can cause cracks in the pipes and may separate the pipes at the joints, causing leaks and potential bursting.
To avoid such scenarios, keep the water pressure between 40 and 80 psi. It will also help reduce the wasting of water.
To do so, locate where the water supply is. You should find a water pressure gauge there. Find the valve, adjust the screw, and check the pressure. Then you should be good to go!
8. Insulate the Pipes
During freezing temperatures, water can freeze in the pipes, causing blocks and wear and tear, and even sometimes an explosion.
Hot water lines also tend to face heat loss, increasing water heating costs. To prevent these from happening, insulating water pipes is important.
Insulation can come in various forms depending on where it will be done. Some of them are foam pipe insulation, foil-and-foam pipe insulation, foil-backed natural cotton, bubble-film pipe wrap, and rubber-pipe insulation tape.
Now that we have shared a few useful tips to maintain the water lines at home, we hope that these will help you to keep the lines clean and leak-proof, reduce the costs and chances of damage, and help them last longer.
Remember to keep the pipes well maintained and checked routinely. If any problem arises, be it from how the water looks or smells or the sounds that the pipes are making, you must determine the source or contact a plumber immediately.