8 Plumbing Tips for New Homeowners 

Are you happy to be a new homeowner? Congratulations! It’s a relief to own a home and not have to deal with a landlord. Nevertheless, homeownership includes lots of new responsibilities. For instance, you are now in charge of keeping your pipes and plumbing fixtures in good working order.

The last thing you want is to resolve a plumbing concern just after moving in, so it’s wise to confirm everything is ready to go before closing day. Check out these eight valuable plumbing tips every new homeowner should be familiar with.

1. Consider a Plumbing Inspection

Once you pick out your dream home, it’s a good idea to schedule a professional plumbing inspection. This can uncover previously hidden issues with the supply lines, fixtures, appliances and drains you might not have known about. Poor water pressure or a slow toilet leak won’t always be a deal-breaker, but it’s nice to resolve these problems before you move in.

2. Check for Pipe Insulation

Your home’s pipes can freeze and burst if they’re exposed to cold temperatures. No new homeowner wants to deal with that, so inspect all exposed pipes before moving in. If the pipes aren’t insulated, this inexpensive upgrade is an effective preventive measure for frozen and burst pipes.

3. Locate the Main Water Shutoff Valve

Shutting off the water to your house can greatly reduce property damage if you encounter a major emergency like a burst pipe. But you must first know where the valve is located.

If the house has a basement or crawl space, the shutoff valve is most likely situated on a wall near the front of the house. If the building is on a slab foundation, take a look in the garage or near the water heater.

Still no luck? The shutoff valve is sometimes located in a utility box buried around the street. Search for a round or rectangular metal cover flush with the grass or sidewalk. It could be labeled “water meter” to help you recognize it.

If you still can’t find the primary water shutoff valve, call a plumber for help locating it before you have an emergency.

4. Find Individual Shutoff Valves

In addition to the main shutoff valve, most fixtures and appliances will have dedicated valves entering the wall behind them. This allows you to shut off the water while completing repairs or to reduce damage in an emergency. Familiarize yourself with the location of every valve anytime you buy a new house.

5. Know the Signs of a Plumbing Leak

Water damage is a common concern regarding plumbing leaks, but a leaky faucet can also drain your wallet. As an example, one drip every second wastes more than 1,600 gallons each year. To prevent this, watch for the telltale signs of plumbing leaks in your home:

    • Dripping or bubbling sounds
    • A spike in water bills
    • Changes in the water meter readings despite not using any water
    • Standing water, wood rot or mold growth under the sinks
    • Loose toilet
    • Water stains on the ceilings and walls
    • Lasting musty odors

6. Purchase a Basic Plumbing Emergency Kit

Contrary to popular belief, chemical drain openers shouldn’t go in a plumbing emergency kit. These potent cleaners can harm your pipes if used frequently. What’s more, they only offer a temporary solution at best.

A better alternative is to have non-chemical supplies on hand the next time you have a plumbing disaster. These include:

    • Cup plunger for backed up sinks, tubs and showers
    • Flange plunger for clogged toilets
    • Hand-crank drain snake for minor blockages
    • Adjustable wrench to remove the P-trap from under clogged sinks
    • Utility bucket to catch water from a leaky pipe
    • Plumber’s tape to fix leaky showerheads
    • Duct tape to mitigate the flow of a plumbing leak until a plumber is on the way

7. Avoid Clogged Drains from Day One

Anything that flows down the drain besides water could cause a clog. Run your drains flowing smoothly with these preventive tips:

    • Install mesh drain covers in bathroom sinks and showers
    • Never flush anything down the toilet besides human waste and a small amount of toilet paper
    • Do not pour cooking grease down the kitchen sink
    • Pour a large pot of near-boiling water down every drain each month

8. Have a Plumber on Speed Dial

While these plumbing tips for new homeowners should keep many problems from happening, it’s still sensible to know a reliable plumber in town. For dependable, affordable work, there’s no better place to turn than Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing.

We have locations across North America to support our customers from coast to coast. When you contact our certified plumbers for the job, you can rest assured that every repair and installation job is backed by a one-year 100% satisfaction guarantee. Get in touch with your local Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing office to request plumbing services with us today.

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