For many homeowners, the plumbing system is one of those things that they don't give much thought unless it isn't functioning as it should. The truth is, to keep your home's plumbing in the best possible condition and respond properly to emergencies, there are some things that you should know. Here's a look at some of the things that your plumber wants you to be familiar with when it comes to your home's plumbing system.
Shut-Off Valves and Cleanouts
One of the first things that you should do when you move into a new home is to familiarize yourself with the locations of all of the shut-off valves and plumbing cleanouts. This is important for several reasons.
First, the shut-off valves are an essential safety component. If you have a pipe break or other plumbing problem with the incoming water lines, you need to be able to turn off the water flow quickly to mitigate the damage. Depending on the location of the problem, you might be able to turn the water off locally at the fixture, or you may need to turn off the main water shut-off valve to your home. Know where these valves are for every fixture and for the main incoming line.
Similarly, the drain cleanout ports are another important feature to locate. These can be beneficial when you're trying to clear out a clog or see what's going on inside your pipes. If you're not sure where they are, your plumber can help you locate them.
Proper Drain Maintenance
Another thing you should know is the proper care and maintenance steps for your home's drain lines. For example, you should talk with a plumber about the best type of drain screen for each of your home's plumbing drains. Drain screens are important investments because they help to keep food particles and other debris from flowing into the drains and potentially causing clogs.
Not only should you seek your plumber's advice for choosing drain screens, but you should also talk with him or her about what types of things you should keep out of your drains. In most cases, you should avoid putting anything down the drains other than water, and don't flush anything other than human waste and toilet tissue. Anything else could potentially cause clogs down the line that can be costly to clear.
Finally, there are some home solutions for keeping your drains clear, but some of the ones that circulate widely aren't truly effective. Ask your plumber about any drain cleaning solutions that you should consider and make sure that you know how frequently you should use them.
If you have any other questions or uncertainties, talk with local plumbing services.