10 Things Your Plumber Wants You to Discontinue Doing Immediately

Requiring a plumber in the U.S. can be necessary if you are experiencing a dripping or burst pipe. But the majority of times, you can stop clogging your pipes or needing repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be expensive to take care of.

Here are some of the most frequent problems our plumbers field calls about at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing and how you can avoid them.

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Although they might be known as “flushable wipes,” the best location for them is the trash. The only thing that should be flushed (except for the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you use a septic system.

A Canadian study that looked at 101 such wipes learned they all failed a flushability test, according to Forbes. As flushable wipes don’t dissolve like toilet paper, they can clog your sewer line and lead to your toilet backing up.

They can also cause problems with city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can attach to other yucky things that shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet, such as cooking fat and hygienic products, to result in a fatberg. Along with being unsanitary and just plain nasty, environmental nonprofit Green America says these masses are expensive to fix. If you’re on a city sewer system, those are costs that could get assigned to you in the future.

Whatever kind of wipe you’re using—makeup remover, cleansing, baby or sanitizing—it should be thrown in the trash once you’re finished.

2. Flushing Other Things That Should Go in the Waste Bin

Other than flushable wipes, there are a few other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These involve:

    • Feminine hygiene products
    • Makeup remover pads
    • Cat litter

Together with wipes, these things can plug your sewer line and make your toilet run over, sticking you with a costly (and gross) mess.

3. Using Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

Using drop-in toilet fresheners might seem like a great way to keep your toilet bowl fresh, but they may do more damage than good. These tablets typically contain chemicals, like bleach, which can destroy rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets break down, they can block the toilet and prevent it from flushing.

4. Buying Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is plugged, your initial response may be to get a cheap liquid drain cleaner. However, there are a few things you should realize about these drain cleaners.

    1. They’re poisonous. Drain cleaners are a toxic blend of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also make intense fumes that can cause respiratory irritation.
    1. They can eat away at your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, imagine what they can do to your plumbing: corrosion, cracks and even failure.
    1. They’re not good for the environment. As you can determine, these formulas aren’t extremely good for the environment.
    1. They might not even work. In spite of all the chemicals they include, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a short time. That’s because they often push the clog deeper into your plumbing until it creates a huge problem.

If you do need to use a drain cleaner, we advise using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners have bacteria and enzymes to get rid of clogs and unpleasant odors. While they may work more slowly than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re safer for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you’re dealing with a strong clog that just won’t break up, calling a professional plumber like Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing is your smartest option for drain cleaning. While you can rent a drain auger or plumbing snake, it’s easier to have a professional perform the job. That way, you’ll also skip causing damage to your pipes and a host of horrible issues including leaks, nonworking seals and troublesome odors.

After your drain is clear, keep it that way by using a screen to keep hair or food scraps from clogging it again.

5. Pouring Grease Down Your Sink

It might seem like it’s not a big deal to drain a little bit of fat down your sink. But over time, that grease can grow and clog your pipes. If the grease gets into the sewer system, it can build up with flushable wipes and create a nasty fatberg like we discussed prior.

To stop plumbing troubles, drain the fat into a container. After it solidifies, you can throw it away in the garbage.

6. Turning to Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a beneficial tool for eliminating little amounts of food waste. But it can’t eliminate everything. To stop malfunctions or clogs, we recommend not putting these foods down your garbage disposal:

    • Coffee grounds
    • Pasta, oats, rice and bread
    • Bones, nuts, pits and seeds
    • Eggshells
    • Onions and potato peels
    • Fibrous fruits and vegetables
    • Grease

If your garbage disposal is smelly, you can freshen it with citrus peels or a blend of baking soda and vinegar.

7. Ignoring Maintenance for Your Plumbing System

Similar to your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also requires routine tune-ups. This service can help us discover minor issues before they result in big problems, including a damaging water leak. Some of the troubles we are on the lookout for entail:

    • Ample water pressure
    • Dripping or blocked pipes
    • Adequately operating supply lines and plumbing fixtures including sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do notice trouble, like a leaking sink or pipe, it’s important to get it fixed right away before it becomes larger or results in damage.

8. Making an Attempt to Fix Your Plumbing Yourself

When you are dealing with a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, we recommend calling an Expert at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing for leak repair before it grows or results in damage.

Fixing plumbing is a detailed job that’s best done by specialists. There’s a reason why plumbers finish extensive certification and licensing. Don’t attempt water pipe repair on your own or call a handyman, as you could end up wasting time and creating a pricier expensive problem.

9. Trying to Service Your Water Heater on Your Own

When it comes to your water heater, service and upkeep is best left to the specialists. This includes draining it or checking the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t completed right, you could burn yourself with hot water or flood your house.

Pro water heater maintenance offers peace of mind that your water heater is operating right. It also provides you advance notice when it’s time to start thinking about water heater replacement, because they often only run for about 10 years.

10. Not Knowing Where the Water Main Shutoff Is

When your residence has a major water leak, it’s important to know where the main water valve is and how to switch it off. This valve is usually situated in a mechanical room near your water heater.

Here’s how to switch off the main water valve in your house:

    • If it has a wheel: move it clockwise until you can’t anymore.
    • If it has a lever: turn it about a quarter of the way.

If you’re don’t know where the valve is located, Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing can help you find it.

It’s also a wise idea to install a water leak protection system that will alert you and turn off the water if there’s a problem. You can even have a smart system to watch water use and notify you on your phone if there’s trouble.

Whatever plumbing issue you’re faced with, our Expert plumbers at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing are available to help you. And we’ll back our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll know that your repairs were completed like they should. Contact us at 866-397-3787 to request your appointment today!

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