Alban Home Inspection Service

 Plumbing Maintenance Tips

If you know the basics of plumbing, you can avoid being at the mercy of a contractor and your house will be in tip-top condition. Here are some tips to help you maintain a plumbing system:

Keep sink drains and strainers clean by regularly removing food and pouring a pot of boiling water down drains every month.

Keep drains and the dishwasher free of fat,  grease, and coffee grounds. Also, never pour paint or chemicals into drains.

To prevent odor and to keep garbage disposals clean, flush with one pot of hot water and a half-cup of baking soda each month through the system.

Replace any patched pipes, since patches are meant to be only temporary.

Tubs, sinks, shower stalls, basins, and toilets should be checked periodically to ensure that they are free of cracks, rust, and other forms of surface damage.

Caulk and putty seals should be in good condition to prevent water damage. Fixtures should be firmly attached to the wall or floor.

Have the water heater inspected annually and check it for rust or leakage periodically. However, do not mistake condensation for leakage. If there is water in the relief drain valve, it should be checked immediately by a plumber.

Drain a few gallons of water out of water heaters every six months to prevent sediment buildup.

Sump pumps need to be connected to surface grade or to a storm drain. Sump pumps should not be connected to a septic tank or to a sewage system because these systems are not capable of handling large amounts of water. Also, all sump pumps should have a dedicated outlet.

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A strip of toilet tissue or cleansing tissue also can be held near suspected leaks on a breezy day. The tissue will flutter where leaks exist. 
Another good test, done at night
with most
inside lights turned off, is to have someone go outside and shine a flashlight at points of suspected air leaks. Where the flashlight’s light is visible, weather-stripping is needed. 
Stripping for windows and doors must be
chosen carefully. The stripping must be durable and well attached to withstand frequent opening and closing. Special heavy-duty weather-stripping also is available for overhead garage doors. This is especially important if the garage is attached to the home. Doors leading to unheated or poorly heated areas, such as garages, attics, and basements, should be given the same weather-stripping tests as exterior doors. 
can purchase foam pads for electrical
outlets and switch plates on exterior walls, which can be sources of drafts.




Note: This newsletter is for informational purposes only. When getting involved with a project, please work within your ability. If you need help with a contractor or with any other home-related issue, please contact Alban Home Inspection Service with any questions. Thank You.

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