Steps to Avoid Emergency Plumbing Calls

It’s 10 o’clock at night. Or it’s a Sunday. Or you’re about to leave on vacation for a week. All of those are the some of the least times you want to be making a call to the plumber for some sort of unexpected plumbing problem. Here are some helpful tips on regular maintenance of your home’s plumbing that will lessen your chance of being caught in a plumbing emergency.

Regular Rodding
To maintain your property and prevent back-up problems, your home’s drainage system should be rodded on an annual or semi-annual basis depending on the age of your sewer system and the amount of trees and other foliage on your property. During the course a year, roots from trees can grow into the sewer lines and leaves can also clog a drain, preventing water from flowing away from your home. A 2-man labor crew may need to rod you sanitary lines, your storm sewers, window well drains and yard area drains in order to prevent unexpected backups during rainy seasons.

Sump Pump Checks
Having your sump pump checked, especially the battery back-up system, is imperative to not being caught with a ‘dead’ pump during a storm. The battery back-up is a an important component in the sump pump operations should the power go out or if there is a mechanical failure, so regularly checking to make sure the battery works is key. The submersible pumps, depending on your property’s water table, may need to run quite regularly resulting in a shortened lifespan. A regular check on this can help spot any potential wear on the pump that may require replacing the pump.

Winterizing Outdoor Faucets
Making sure any outdoor plumbing fixtures are properly turned off and drained before the first cold snap will prevent leaks in the spring. Also, never leave a hose attached to the outdoor faucet over the winter. Undrained pipes may freeze and burst/split over the winter, and the homeowner won’t notice it – until the pipes or faucet thaws, resulting in water trickling into a garage or basement. This is an easy problem to avoid with proper winterization.

Minor Plumbing Problems
Regular service on minor plumbing problems while they are minor will keep the costs down and help avoid an emergency call. Dripping faucets and running toilets are not only annoying to listen to, they also are adding to the water bill! Leaky waste pipes under a sink or a slow drain in the tub or shower should also be attended to early on before they turn into a bigger problem. Finally, if the home’s plumbing is aging, especially a water heater or a kitchen disposer, it is good to budget for a replacement. Nothing worse than no hot water for a shower or a clogged up sink when entertaining!

Regular maintenance on your plumbing is as important as regular maintenance on your automobile. If you stay on top of these steps, chances are, you will avoid a more expensive and extensive emergency plumbing call in the future.