Use These Plumbing Tips To Help You Avoid Backups And Clogs

Wednesday, October 10th, 2018
maintain your plumbing with local plumbing experts Allen's Tri-State

Backups and clogs are one of the biggest plumbing problems that can affect any building. The last thing your business or family needs is a bubbling toilet or clogged pipes. This post will go over some simple tips and tricks you can use to prevent backups and clogs.

General tips to help maintain your plumbing

1. Clean your plumbing pipes regularly

Hair, grease, gunk, and junk will build up over time. You can clear most debris out by using baking soda and vinegar. But, if there are large blockages like tree roots or foreign objects, you will need to hire a professional. Calling a local plumbing company means you can have your plumbing inspected and repaired quickly.

2. Fix recurring problems

Recurring blockages can be caused by tree roots invading the sewer or main line. This could indicate a structural problem in the way the plumbing was installed. It is cheaper to repair the source of the problem rather than treat the symptoms over and over again. If you need a new plumbing system installed, there are many options for residential and commercial plumbers.

3. Block debris from entering pipes

Blockages are caused by things entering your drain system, including hair. You can prevent this by adding a simple mesh drain screen to your tubs and showers. You can also install a lint catcher on the drain of your washing machine to help prevent clogs and water backing up into the bathtub.

4. Flush hot water down the drains

For sinks that aren’t used as frequently as others, run water down them every now and then. Hot water can clear many blockages that build up over time. You can also add vinegar to help clean the plumbing drains.

5. Never dump grease down your drain

You should never dump grease down your drains. Grease is fat, and when fat cools, it congeals and hardens, catching many other objects that would normally wash down through the plumbing system. This is especially important in restaurants and households that cook high volumes of food.

6. Give your garbage disposal a rest

It’s easy to rely on the garbage disposal for getting rid of food particles, but don’t do this. It can be harmful to your plumbing system to send large chunks of food into the pipes. Whenever possible, remove waste and compost or throw it away before washing dishes. You can also clean your garbage disposal by grinding up ice and salt, or citrus, and using a brush.

Special plumbing issues to watch out for

1. Clogged toilets

Clogged toilets are inevitable, so you should focus on minimizing the rate at which they occur and improving how you respond to the issue. Luckily, most blockages can be cleared with a plunger. After you clear a clog, you should drop half a cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar into the toilet. The reaction caused helps clear any remaining blockages.

2. Drain system clogs

Another weak point in plumbing systems are the drains in showers and tubs. You can usually stop most clogs by periodically removing hair from the drains. Once you remove the clogs, you can apply a plunger to clear any deeper blockages. Finally, like with toilets, use baking soda and vinegar to clear out the remaining debris.

3. Garbage disposal clogs

The garbage disposal is one of the plumbing systems in your home most likely to break down. Even though it chews up what you throw in it, it can still get as easily clogged as your toilet. Before you try to fix your disposal, make sure it is cleared of any objects. Under the sink, you can find the base of the system. You can use a wrench designed for your garbage disposal (an Allen wrench) at the base of the machine, where there is a hole. Stick the Allen wrench into the hole and press the reset button located inside, turn on the water, and flip the switch. This should clear most clogs.

4. Avoid chemical drain cleaners

You may notice that this post focuses on baking soda and vinegar, but no chemicals. That is because chemical drain cleaners can hurt more than help your drain system. These products do clear clogs, but they use powerful corrosive materials that can also damage your pipes, plumbing system, and fixtures.

Also, using chemicals can be dangerous for your health. You probably notice after you open a chemical container that it smells. That smell can be dangerous and can irritate your eyes and nose. If the substance comes in contact with your skin, it could give you a chemical burn. Even worse, if it is ingested, it is toxic and could be fatal to pets or children. Drain cleaners are also bad for the environment. They do use some chemicals that are neutralized with water at treatment facilities, but many are leftover that can harm fish and other animals.

Professional plumbers in Amarillo, TX

There are many steps you can take to prevent clogs and backups in your plumbing system. Hiring an experienced plumber will also help keep your system in top condition. Allen’s Tri-State Mechanical Inc. in Amarillo, Texas can help with all your plumbing needs. We offer Commercial and Residential plumbing services throughout the Texas Panhandle. You can reach us at (806) 376-8345 or Contact Us by email to learn more. You can also stop by our office at 404 S. Hayden St. in Amarillo.