10 Things Your Plumber Wants You to Discontinue Doing Immediately

Needing a plumber in the U.S. can be necessary if you are experiencing a leaky or burst pipe. But the majority of times, you can avoid clogging your pipes or needing repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be pricey to fix.

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

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Despite the fact they might be known as “flushable wipes,” the ideal location for them is the trash. The only thing that should be flushed (other than the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you rely on a septic system.

A Canadian study that tested 101 such wipes discovered they all failed a flushability test, according to Forbes. Since flushable wipes don’t dissolve like toilet paper, they can block your sewer line and lead to your toilet backing up.

They can also cause a lot of trouble to city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can combine with other nasty things that shouldn’t be disposed of down the toilet, including cooking fat and hygienic products, to result in a fatberg. Besides being dirty and just plain gross, environmental nonprofit Green America says these blobs are expensive to get rid of. If you rely on a city sewer system, those are bills that could get shuffled to you in the long run.

Whatever type of wipe you’re using—makeup remover, cleansing, baby or sanitizing—it should go in the trash once you’re done.

2. Flushing Other Things That Should Be Tossed in the Waste Bin

In addition to flushable wipes, there are several other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These cover:

    • Feminine hygiene products
    • Makeup remover pads
    • Cat litter

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

3. Dropping in Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

Using drop-in toilet fresheners might seem like a smart way to keep your toilet bowl clean, but they may do more damage than good. These tablets typically contain chemicals, including bleach, which can wreck rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets dissolve, they can clog the toilet and stop it from flushing.

4. Dumping Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is blocked, your immediate response could be to get an inexpensive liquid drain cleaner. However, there are some things you should be aware of when it involves these drain cleaners.

    1. They’re harmful. Drain cleaners are a toxic mixture of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also produce intense fumes that can result in 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 imagine, these chemicals aren’t extremely helpful for the environment.
    1. They might not even unplug your drain. Regardless of all the chemicals they have, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a little while. That’s due to the fact they often force the clog further into your plumbing until it results in a big problem.

If you do need to use a drain cleaner, we suggest using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners rely on bacteria and enzymes to break up clogs and foul odors. While they might work more slowly than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re better for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you’re dealing with a strong clog that just won’t go away, contacting 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 faster to have an Expert finish the job. That way, you’ll also skip causing damage to your pipes and a host of bad issues such as leaks, nonworking seals and troublesome odors.

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

5. Getting Rid of Grease Down Your Sink

It may seem like it’s not a big deal to pour a tiny bit of fat down your sink. But as time passes, that grease can grow and block your pipes. If the grease finds its way into the sewer system, it can stick to flushable wipes and create a nasty fatberg like we discussed earlier.

To skip plumbing woes, drain the fat into a container. After it cools, you can dump it in the garbage.

6. Using Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a helpful tool for getting rid of little bits of food. But it can’t get rid of everything. To avoid breakdowns or clogs, we suggest not putting these items 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 revive it with citrus peels or a blend of baking soda and vinegar.

7. Avoiding Maintenance for Your Plumbing System

Similar to your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also has to have annual tune-ups. This service can help us spot small issues before they result in major problems, like a damaging water leak. Some of the issues we are on the lookout for entail:

    • Adequate water pressure
    • Drippy or blocked pipes
    • Properly functioning supply lines and plumbing fixtures including sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do spot an issue, like a dripping sink or pipe, it’s crucial to get it fixed immediately before it becomes worse or results in damage.

8. Attempting to Fix Your Plumbing Yourself

When you have 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 gets bigger or causes damage.

Mending plumbing is a complex job that’s best completed by pros. There’s a reason why plumbers go through extensive certification and licensing. Don’t try to do water pipe repair without help or hire a handyman, as you could end up wasting time and having a costlier expensive problem.

9. Trying to Tune Up Your Water Heater on Your Own

When it comes to your water heater, service and maintenance is best left to the professionals. This includes draining it or examining the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t done properly, you could burn yourself with boiling water or flood your residence.

Professional water heater maintenance gives peace of mind that your water heater is running properly. It also offers you advance notice when it’s time to start planning for water heater replacement, as they often only work for about 10 years.

10. Not Knowing Where the Water Main Shutoff Is

In the event your residence has a large water leak, it’s important to be aware of where the main water valve is and how to switch it off. This valve is often found in a mechanical room near your water heater.

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

    • If it has a wheel: turn it clockwise until you can’t anymore.
    • If it has a lever: move 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 smart idea to install a water leak protection system that will alert you and cut off the water if there’s a problem. You can even use a smart system to monitor water use and notify you on your phone if there’s trouble.

Whatever plumbing issue you’re experiencing, our Expert plumbers at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing are ready to help you. And we’ll stand behind our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll have peace of mind that your repairs were completed right. Give us a call at 866-397-3787 to schedule your appointment now!

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