While you can’t always avoid calling in the plumber, there are some ways you can proactively keep your plumbing system healthy and extend the lifetime of your pipes. Consider these five tips to help save you money on plumbing repairs and ensure your system lasts its expected lifespan.
- Preventative plumbing maintenance
If you want to avoid problems within your plumbing system, you should stay ahead of even the small issues. Just as you perform a number of yearly tasks on your home with the changing of the seasons, you should also schedule preventative plumbing maintenance. A professional plumber can perform a sewer camera inspection on your pipes for an inside look at the system’s condition. A waterproof, high-resolution camera will be guided through your pipes to detect any small issues so they can be handled before they evolve into large-scale plumbing emergencies.
- Get a second opinion
Before you commit to any major plumbing service or repairs, take the time to shop around for a second opinion. It’s possible that the second or third professional plumber you contact offers different or more advanced services that can solve your problem more efficiently and at a lower cost.
- Avoid clogs
Take the necessary steps to ensure your daily activity helps prevent clogs in your pipes. Avoid washing grease, oils and other fats down the drain. Ensure the only things being flushed down the toilet are waste and tissue paper, and regularly use natural drain cleaning practices, like baking soda and vinegar.
- Repair leaks
Continuous water leaks can cause mineral buildup and rust to form. Moreover, the Environmental Protection Agency reports 10 percent of homes in the U.S. have undetected leaks that waste 90 gallons of water each day. Even a slower leak of 10 drips an hour creates a loss of 500 gallons of water each year. By repairing leaks, you’ll not only save money on your monthly water bill, but you’ll also preserve your fixtures.
- Invest inefficient water reliant appliances
Older, less efficient water-reliant appliances like dishwashers, washing machines and toilets can use massive amounts of water. An upgrade to a more modern appliance can save you hundreds in water costs each year. Dishwashers designed in the 90s used as much as 15 gallons of water per cycle, whereas today’s standard-size Energy Star-rated dishwashers use less than 4.25 gallons of water per load.
Toilets are the main source of water use in the home, accounting for nearly 30 percent of all water consumption, and they can waste several gallons of water with each flush if an efficient model isn’t used. The current federal standard is 1.6 gallons per flush, but some dual-flush Kohler toilets can use as little as .6 gallons per flush.
By working to prevent common plumbing problems and having your system inspected each year, you can limit the amount spent on repairs.