10 Things Your Plumber Wants You to Stop Doing Right Away

Requiring a plumber in Charleston can be inevitable if you are experiencing a dripping or ruptured pipe. But the majority of times, you can avoid plugging your pipes or needing repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be costly to fix.

Here are some of the most regular troubles our plumbers get calls about at Pardee Service Experts and how you can prevent them.

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Although they might be referred to as “flushable wipes,” the best spot for them is the garbage. The only thing that should be flushed (except for the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you have a septic system.

A Canadian study that looked at 101 such wipes learned they all didn’t pass a flushability test, according to Forbes. As flushable wipes don’t break down like toilet paper, they can plug your sewer line and make your toilet back 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, including cooking oil and hygienic products, to create a fatberg. Besides being unsanitary and just plain nasty, environmental nonprofit Green America says these masses are expensive to get rid of. If you’re on a city sewer system, those are expenses that could get passed on to you down the road.

Whichever type of wipe you’re using—makeup remover, cleansing, baby or sanitizing—it should be tossed in the trash once you’re complete.

2. Flushing Other Things That Should Go in the Garbage

Other than flushable wipes, there are a few other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These include:

  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Makeup remover pads
  • Cat litter

Like wipes, these things can block your sewer line and overflow your toilet, leaving you with a pricey (and gross) mess.

3. Dropping in Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

Relying on drop-in toilet fresheners could seem like a great way to keep your toilet bowl sanitary, but they can do more harm than good. These tablets usually contain chemicals, like bleach, which can destroy rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets melt, they can clog the toilet and keep it from flushing.

4. Using Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is plugged, your first reaction may be to purchase an inexpensive liquid drain cleaner. However, there are some things you should be aware of when it involves these drain cleaners.

  1. They’re poisonous. Drain cleaners are a toxic combination of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also make intense fumes that can cause respiratory irritation. 
  2. They can corrode your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, think about what they can do to your pipes: corrosion, fractures and even failure. 
  3. They’re harmful to the environment. As you can determine, these substances aren’t very helpful for the environment. 
  4. They might not even unplug your drain. In spite of all the chemicals they have, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a short time. That’s due to the fact they often move the clog more into your plumbing until it leads to a major problem.

If you do have to have a drain cleaner, we recommend using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners rely on bacteria and enzymes to break up clogs and unpleasant odors. While they may work more slowly than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re better for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you’re experiencing a strong clog that just won’t break up, contacting a professional plumber like Pardee Service Experts is your wisest option for drain cleaning. While you can rent a drain auger or plumbing snake, it’s faster to have a professional finish the job. That way, you’ll also prevent breaking your pipes and many other horrible issues like leaks, damaged seals and horrible odors.

After your drain is clear, keep it that way by using a screen to keep hair or food scraps from clogging it again.

5. Dumping Grease Down Your Sink

It can seem like it’s not a problem to dump a little bit of oil down your sink. But as the years go by, that grease can build up and plug your pipes. If the grease gets into the sewer system, it can stick to flushable wipes and create a yucky fatberg like we talked about earlier.

To prevent plumbing issues, drain the grease into a bowl. After it solidifies, you can toss it in the trash.

6. Relying on Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a useful tool for getting rid of small bits of food. But it can’t get rid of everything. To stop problems or clogs, we recommend not putting these things down your garbage disposal:

  • Coffee grounds 
  • Pasta, oats, rice and bread 
  • Bones, nuts, pits and seeds 
  • Eggshells 
  • Onions and potato peels 
  • Fibrous fruits and vegetables 
  • Grease

If your garbage disposal is smelly, you can revive it with citrus peels or a combination of baking soda and vinegar.

7. Ignoring Maintenance for Your Plumbing System

Just like your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also needs regular service. This service can help us discover little issues before they cause expensive problems, like a damaging water leak. Some of the issues we are on the lookout for include:

  • Proper water pressure 
  • Leaky or blocked pipes 
  • Correctly operating supply lines and plumbing fixtures such as sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do find an issue, including a leaking sink or pipe, it’s important to get it repaired right away before it grows worse or leads to damage.

8. Making an Attempt to Fix Your Plumbing Yourself

When you are experiencing a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, we recommend calling an Expert at Pardee Service Experts for leak repair before it gets worse or results in damage.

Mending plumbing is a complex job that’s best completed by professionals. There’s a reason why plumbers complete extensive certification and licensing. Don’t attempt water pipe repair on your own or hire a handyman, as you could end up wasting time and making a more expensive problem.

9. Trying to Tune Up Your Water Heater on Your Own

When it comes to your water heater, service and tune-ups are best left to the professionals. This includes draining it or checking the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t performed properly, you could burn yourself with hot water or flood your house.

Professional water heater maintenance gives peace of mind that your water heater is operating properly. It also gives you a heads-up when it’s time to start planning for water heater replacement, as they often only run for about 10 years.

10. Not Being Aware of Where the Water Main Shutoff Is

In the event your home has a large water leak, it’s essential to know where the main water valve is and how to shut it off. This valve is often found in a mechanical room near your water heater.

Here’s how to shut off the main water valve in your home:
  • If it has a wheel: circle it clockwise until you can’t anymore. 
  • If it has a lever: rotate it about a quarter of the way.

If you’re don’t know where the valve is located, Pardee Service Experts can help you find it.

It’s also a good idea to have a water leak protection system that will sound the alarm and shut off the water if there’s an issue. You can even have a smart system to watch water use and notify you through your phone if there’s a leak.

Whatever plumbing trouble you’re experiencing, our Expert plumbers at Pardee Service Experts are available to assist you. And we’ll support our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll have peace of mind that your repairs were finished right. Give us a call at 843-410-6103 to schedule your appointment right away!

*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.
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