Requiring a plumber in Tempe can be inevitable if you have a leaky or broken pipe. But many times, you can avoid plugging your pipes or requiring repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be expensive to repair.
Here are some of the most frequent issues our Experts get calls about at Orangutan Home Services and how you can stop them.
1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes
Although they might be known as “flushable wipes,” the ideal spot for them is the waste bin. The only thing that should be flushed (apart from the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you rely on a septic system.
A Canadian study that tested 101 such wipes learned none of them passed a flushability test, according to Forbes. As flushable wipes don’t break down like toilet paper, they can block your sewer line and lead to your toilet backing up.
They can also cause problems with city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can combine with other yucky things that shouldn’t be disposed of down the toilet, such as cooking fat and hygienic products, to lead to a fatberg. Along with being unsanitary and just plain gross, environmental nonprofit Green America says these masses are pricey to fix. If you’re on a city sewer system, those are bills that could get shuffled to you down the road.
Whichever type of wipe you’re using—makeup remover, cleansing, baby or sanitizing—it should be thrown in the trash once you’re finished.
2. Flushing Other Things That Should Go in the Garbage
Other than flushable wipes, there are several other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These involve:
- Feminine hygiene products
- Makeup remover pads
- Cat litter
In addition to wipes, these things can clog your sewer line and back up your toilet, leaving you with a costly (and nasty) mess.
3. Dropping in Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs
Using drop-in toilet fresheners may seem like a great way to keep your toilet bowl sanitary, but they can do more harm than good. These tablets often contain chemicals, like bleach, which can wreck rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets melt, they can clog the toilet and stop it from flushing.
4. Buying Chemical Drain Cleaners
If your sink is plugged, your initial answer may be to get a low-priced liquid drain cleaner. However, there are some things you should be aware of when it involves these drain cleaners.
- They’re poisonous. Drain cleaners are a toxic combination of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also produce severe fumes that can result in respiratory irritation.
- They can eat through your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, imagine what they can do to your piping: corrosion, cracks and even failure.
- They’re harmful to the environment. As you can figure out, these chemicals aren’t very environmentally friendly.
- They might not even unplug your drain. In spite of all the chemicals they include, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a limited time. That’s due to the fact they often force the clog more into your plumbing until it leads to a big problem.
If you do have to have a drain cleaner, we suggest using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners use bacteria and enzymes to get rid of clogs and bad odors. While they may work more slowly than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re safer for you, your plumbing and the environment.
If you’re experiencing a difficult clog that just won’t dissolve, contacting a professional plumber like Orangutan Home Services is your wisest option for drain cleaning. While you can rent a drain auger or plumbing snake, it’s simpler to have a professional perform the job. That way, you’ll also skip breaking your pipes and many other troublesome issues like leaks, nonworking seals and troublesome odors.
After your drain is clear, keep it that way by installing a screen to keep hair or food scraps from blocking it again.
5. Pouring Grease Down Your Sink
It might seem like it’s not a big deal to dump a little bit of fat down your sink. But as time passes, that grease can grow and plug your pipes. If the grease gets into the sewer system, it can build up with flushable wipes and create a yucky fatberg like we mentioned prior.
To prevent plumbing issues, drain the oil into a can. After it cools, you can throw it away in the garbage.
6. Relying on Your Garbage Disposal for Everything
Your garbage disposal is a beneficial tool for breaking up tiny food scraps. But it can’t get rid of everything. To stop issues or clogs, we suggest not putting these items down your garbage disposal:
- Coffee grounds
- Pasta, oats, rice and bread
- Bones, nuts, pits and seeds
- Onions and potato peels
- Fibrous fruits and vegetables
If your garbage disposal smells bad, you can revive it with citrus peels or a mix of baking soda and vinegar.
7. Avoiding Maintenance for Your Plumbing System
Just like your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also has to have routine maintenance. This service can help us spot minor issues before they result in big problems, such as a damaging water leak. Some of the issues we watch for include:
- Adequate water pressure
- Leaky or plugged pipes
- Adequately functioning supply lines and plumbing fixtures such as sinks, tubs, showers and toilets
If you do see a problem, such as a leaking sink or pipe, it’s critical to get it repaired without delay before it becomes bigger or leads to damage.
8. Attempting to Fix Your Plumbing on Your Own
When you are experiencing a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, we suggest calling an Expert at Orangutan Home Services for leak repair before it gets worse or causes damage.
Fixing plumbing is a complex job that’s best completed by pros. There’s a reason why plumbers complete extensive certification and licensing. Don’t try to do water pipe repair on your own or call a handyman, because you could end up wasting time and having a pricier expensive problem.
9. Trying to Service Your Water Heater on Your Own
When it comes to your water heater, service and tune-ups are best left to the pros. This includes draining it or checking the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t done correctly, you could burn yourself with boiling water or flood your residence.
Experienced water heater maintenance gives peace of mind that your water heater is working properly. It also gives you notice ahead of time when it’s time to start planning for water heater replacement, since they typically only last for about 10 years.
10. Not Realizing Where the Water Main Shutoff Is
If your home has a big water leak, it’s critical to be aware of where the main water valve is and how to switch it off. This valve is often situated in a mechanical room near your water heater.
Here’s how to switch off the main water valve in your home:
- If it has a wheel: turn it clockwise until you can’t anymore.
- If it has a lever: move it about a quarter of the way.
If you’re don’t know where the valve is located, Orangutan Home Services can help you find it.
It’s also a wise idea to get a water leak protection system that will sound the alarm and shut off the water if there’s trouble. You can even have a smart system to keep an eye on water use and notify you through your phone if there’s a problem.
Whatever plumbing issue you’re dealing with, our Expert plumbers at Orangutan Home Services are ready to provide support. And we’ll stand behind our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll be sure that your repairs were done right. Reach us at 602-906-0111 to request your appointment now! *Not applicable to the Advantage Program. See your signed Advantage Program agreement for full details and exclusions. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee is subject to certain restrictions and limitations as set forth in the applicable Terms and Conditions.