Being a homeowner isn't always smooth sailing. If something goes wrong, you can't just call up your landlord to take care of it. Either you have to fix the problem yourself or call a professional. Such issues in your house are inevitable - especially as the seasons change. However, there are steps you can take to avoid unnecessary plumbing issues. Here are five ways to protect your Reno, Nevada, home:
Start with your toilet
There are some things that just should not be flushed. In fact, the only things that belong in your toilet are toilet paper and waste. Everything else - pitch it in the trash. Your pipes aren't made to withstand other items. For example, feminine hygiene products, like tampons and sanitary pads, are made to absorb liquid. Therefore, if flushed, they can back up your fixtures and cause serious damage.
You might have been told to flush pills down the toilet instead of tossing them into the trash. However, antibiotics can eliminate harmful bacteria in our sewage systems and can pose a threat to the environment. Put them in the waste basket instead.
If you are one to have people over at all times, it can be difficult to ensure your guests aren't flushing the wrong materials. It might be helpful to put up a sign like they do in restaurant bathrooms, just to protect your home and plumbing.
Protect your pipes
Regardless of the type of climate you live in, your pipes need a little extra warmth during the winter. Be sure to head out to your local hardware store to pick up some insulation (the pink material found in unfinished basements and attics). Cut the insulation, and wrap it around all the exposed fixtures in your home. This will help keep them toasty, even in the colder months of the year, and prevent freezing.
Don't ignore the problem
Most people expect plumbing issues to go away on their own. You might be able to initially unclog a toilet, but if it keeps getting backed up a couple of times a week, it may mean there's a bigger problem. If you notice something is off, don't just ignore it. For example, a leaky faucet may seem relatively harmless. However, over time, it can increase your water bill and grow harmful mold in your sink. Give a professional a call to come in to fix the problem.
Take care of your drains
All too often, people let things go down the drain that don't belong there. For instance, you should install a hair catcher in all of your showers and tubs. That way, hair won't back up the pipes, as you can throw it in the garbage after you bathe. Another place where many people run into issues? The garbage disposal. Although these kitchen features can come in handy, they're also very sensitive to the wrong materials. Here are some items you should never throw down your garbage disposal:
Fibrous foods, like lettuce, carrots, onion skins and potato peels.
Greasy foods or grease from cleaning.
Food that increases in size with water, like pasta, rice and other grains.
Call a plumber
Although there are plenty of websites that can guide you through snaking a drain or fixing a dishwasher, sometimes you can do more harm than good. Don't risk causing more extensive and expensive problems to you home; instead, just give a plumber a call. Ring us over at Roto-Rooter and we'll send out a professional and experienced plumber to fix anything you need.
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