If there are two words that no homeowner wants to hear in the same sentence, they are ‘plumbing’ and ‘leak’. The idea of water running out of control somewhere in your home is scary to say the least. Water is incredibly damaging when it gets into places where it doesn’t belong, so you need to deal with a leak as quickly as possible. On the topic of plumbing leaks, here are 10 things to keep in mind.
#1 – Pay Attention
One of the best ways to avoid big problems with a plumbing leak is simply to pay attention to your pipes, and look at them on a periodic basis. You might not be an expert plumber, but it usually doesn’t require a trained eye to spot a serious problem.
#2 – Declutter Under the Sink
If you pack in as much stuff under the sink as you can possibly fit, you arejust asking for trouble in the way of a leak. It will be hard to spot a leak under the sink if the cabinet is completely packed with junk, so keep it clean and peek in from time to time to make sure no water is dripping free.
#3 – Address a Water Heater Leak Right Away
If you notice that there is water leaking from your water heater (often located in the garage, or basement), do not ignore the problem – it needs to be addressed right away. There is a good chance that the water heater will have to be replaced, but call in an expert to do an assessment.
#4 – Correct Small Drips
Before a small drip turns into a big leak, take corrective action. Usually, the issue at hand is just a worn-out seal or gasket, which can be easily replaced.
#5 – Watch Your Bill
If your water bill suddenly spikes without any change in your water-usage habits, you almost certainly have a leak somewhere around the home. As soon as you get a bill that is way out of the ordinary, quickly look around your home and attempt to spot the trouble.
#6 – Replacing Faucets is Necessary
Nothing lasts forever, and that certainly includes the faucets in your home. While it is a nice idea to try fixing up old items, sometimes the best course of action is just to replace the faucet with a new one that works properly.
#7 – Follow a Leak
The point where the water is actually dripping is not necessarily where the leak is occurring, so make sure you track your leaks back until you actually find the source of the water. The last thing you want to do is trick yourself into thinking you fixed the leak when it is actually still flowing.
#8 – Cover Up in the Winter
If the weather in your area regularly drops below freezing at night in the winter, consider purchasing some covers for your exterior hose bibs in order to prevent frost from moving up the line and causing damage to your plumbing. Covers are affordable, and easy to put on before winter arrives.
#9 – Avoid Freezing Pipes
Without a doubt, freezing pipes are one of the most-common causes of plumbing leaks. With that in mind, make sure your pipes are properly insulated in the areas where they are outside of the heated portion of your home.
#10 – Clean Your Gutters
Okay – so this actually isn’t a plumbing-related tip. However, it is important. When the fall and winter weather arrives, be sure your gutters are clean so they can properly move water away from your home. If they are clogged, water will collect on your roof, and serious damage can result.