We often get calls from customers sincerely curious about the proper function their homes plumbing systems. Most of the time the homeowner can do a general check of their system on their own. But what does this check look like? It’s as easy of looking as looking at pipes, but can involve a tiny bit of hands on too.
- Main Water Shut Off
One of the most important things to check in your home is the main water shut off. This is usually located in a basement, or near the hot water tank. Once located, shut it off and ensure it actually works. Once shut off, just turn on a tap and see if water continues to come out. If it works, great! Next step is to label it and make sure your whole family knows where it is. Knowing where your main water shut off is and ensuring it works can be the difference between a small leak and a flooded house.
If it doesn’t work, please call us to have it replaced immediately.
2. Hot Water Tank
Another part of your homes plumbing system that should be checked is your hot water tank. You should be checking for signs of leaking. The signs of a leaking tank are water underneath it or rusting drips coming out of the panels or seams. A leaking tank should be replaced sooner rather than later. It’s one of those things that if you don’t do it now, it’s only going to cause more damage left alone. Also, nobody likes to be left without hot water. For peace of mind, you should also check the age of your tank. Depending on the tank, they usually last 8-10 years. Most tanks come with a date embedded in a code on the rating plate. Most of the time you can google the brand on the model/serial number. If you aren’t able to decode it yourself, feel free to call us.
Checking drains is more of a preventative measure. It’s less of an emergency, but still, good practice to maintain your home. What you can do is visually inspect under your kitchen sink and also your bathroom sinks. If you notice water underneath then you should have us come and fix your drains. You can also check their function by plugging the drain, filling up your sink, tub, then pulling the plug and watching how fast/slow they drain. A very slowly draining basin can indicate a plug downstream. You can keep a note of it or get your drains cleaned by us. We do not recommend using chemical cleaners as they can deteriorate your pipes.
An important one to check every month or so are your valves. These include the valves on your supply lines leading to your sinks and toilet. They will most likely be small chrome valves, and what you’re checking for is simply water underneath them. These should be changed as quickly as possible since behind these valves are full pressure from your main valve – lets hope that’s working.
If you are unsure about any of the topics mentioned above, please don’t hesitate to call us. We’re always happy to assist you over the phone, or if need be we can come to check your home’s plumbing for you. We hope you learned something new, and maybe we helped you prevent a future disaster.
Norm’s Plumbing and Heating is a family owned and operated company since 1971. We’re staffed with 9 journeyman Plumber/Gasfitters and can make it to your house the day of your call on most occasions.