Though it feels like we’re still in the depths of winter, Daylight Saving Time will prompt us to spring our clocks forward on Sunday March 8, 2015. Besides adjusting your clock, homeowners should use the occasion to inspect a few plumbing fixtures around the house as part of spring maintenance. Sure, you could do these maintenance checks any time of the year but it’s a lot easier to remember to do them when you associate the tasks with the time change event.
Drain your water heater tank. If you want to extend its life span beyond the 11 year average, you should drain sediment from the tank on an annual basis. This is especially important if you have hard water. It’s not terribly difficult but there are some safety precautions you should consider, such as shutting off the power to the water heater. Rather than list each step in this blog, it’s more efficient to refer you to this step by step video hosted by a Roto-Rooter Master Plumber. The visual elements will make the process easier and safer.
Second, inspect your washing machine hoses for stress cracks, soft spots and bulges to reduce the risk of a flood. Rubber hoses should be replaced every three years. We recommend replacing them with braided stainless steel hoses, which last five to seven years.
Third, inspect water supply lines connected to your refrigerator’s ice maker. Braided stainless steel lines are a good replacement idea, especially if the appliance is more than five years old.
Inspect water connections to dishwashers, water softeners and other appliances to reduce the risk of accidental flooding. This video will show you what to do. And it also has some other flood avoidance tips that will prove helpful before we go into the spring rainy season.
If your house is equipped with a sump pump for removing water from basements and crawl spaces, now is a great time to test it and make sure it’s working. Pour a few buckets of water into the sump pit. If your pump is operating properly, it will turn itself on when the water level rises, pump out the excess water then turn itself off automatically. If the primary pump runs often and is more than five years old, you may want to replace it. If it rarely turns on, chances are that your pump will last 7-10 years before it needs to be replaced. The bottom line is that you should replace the sump pump on your own terms and that means doing so before it fails and allows your basement to flood. And you should seriously consider installing a battery backup sump pump that will prevent flooding if the primary sump pump fails.
Not everybody is equipped with the necessary do it yourself skills to complete these tasks. But an experienced Roto-Rooter plumber can complete them if you can’t. You can schedule a visit at a time that fits your schedule by visiting the Roto-Rooter website or calling 1-800-ROTO-911 (1-800-768-6911).