Your Plumber Wants You to Quit Doing These 10 Things Immediately

Needing a plumber in Louisville can be necessary if you are experiencing a dripping or broken pipe. But many times, you can avoid clogging your pipes or requiring repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be expensive to repair.

Here are some of the most regular issues our plumbers receive calls about at Becht/Givens Service Experts and how you can prevent them.

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Even though they might be called “flushable wipes,” the best location 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 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 lead to your toilet backing up.

They can also cause problems with city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can conglomerate with other nasty things that shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet, including cooking fat and hygienic products, to create a fatberg. Besides being unsanitary and just plain gross, 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 thrown in the trash once you’re done.

2. Flushing Other Things That Belong in the Trash

Besides flushable wipes, there are a couple other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These cover:

  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Makeup remover pads
  • Cat litter

Along with wipes, these things can block your sewer line and make your toilet run over, leaving you with an expensive (and gross) mess.

3. Using Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

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

4. Dumping Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is blocked, your immediate response might be to get an inexpensive liquid drain cleaner. However, there are some things you should know about these drain cleaners.

  1. They’re toxic. Drain cleaners are a toxic blend of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also produce intense fumes that can cause respiratory irritation. 
  2. They can eat through your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, think about what they can do to your plumbing: corrosion, breaks and even failure. 
  3. They’re harmful to the environment. As you can figure out, these substances aren’t extremely environmentally friendly. 
  4. They might not even unclog your drain. Despite all the chemicals they have, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a little while. That’s because they often move the clog further into your plumbing until it results in a big problem.

If you do need to use a drain cleaner, we advise using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners have bacteria and enzymes to eliminate clogs and unpleasant odors. While they may take more time than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re safer for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you have a strong clog that just won’t go away, contacting a professional plumber like Becht/Givens Service Experts is your best 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 damaging your pipes and a host of horrible issues including leaks, nonworking seals and troublesome 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. Getting Rid of Grease Down Your Sink

It can seem like it’s not a issue to pour a tiny bit of fat down your pipes. But over time, that grease can build up and block your pipes. If the grease gets into the sewer system, it can stick to flushable wipes and develop a nasty fatberg like we mentioned prior.

To avoid plumbing woes, drain the oil into a can. After it solidifies, you can throw it away in the trash.

6. Relying on Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a helpful tool for eliminating little bits of food. But it can’t get rid of everything. To stop problems or clogs, we recommend not putting these items 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 freshen it with citrus peels or a combination of baking soda and vinegar.

7. Skipping Maintenance for Your Plumbing System

Much like your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also needs annual service. This service can help us discover minor issues before they lead to big problems, including a damaging water leak. Some of the troubles we are on the lookout for involve:

  • Ample water pressure 
  • Dripping or plugged pipes 
  • Adequately operating supply lines and plumbing fixtures including sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do find trouble, including a dripping sink or pipe, it’s important to get it fixed without delay before it gets larger or results in damage.

8. Making an Attempt to Fix Your Plumbing on Your Own

When you are experiencing a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, it’s important to call an Expert at Becht/Givens Service Experts for leak repair before it gets worse or causes damage.

Mending plumbing is a complex job that’s best left to specialists. There’s a reason why plumbers finish extensive certification and licensing. Don’t attempt water pipe repair without help or get a handyman, because you could end up wasting time and making a costlier expensive problem.

9. Trying to Maintain Your Water Heater Yourself

When it comes to your water heater, service and maintenance is best left to the specialists. This includes draining it or examining the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t done right, you could burn yourself with boiling water or flood your house.

Experienced water heater maintenance provides peace of mind that your water heater is running right. It also offers you notice ahead of time when it’s time to start planning for water heater replacement, since they typically only operate for about 10 years.

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

When your house has a major water leak, it’s critical to be aware of where the main water valve is and how to shut it off. This valve is usually located 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: move it clockwise until you can’t anymore. 
  • If it has a lever: move it about a quarter of the way.

If you’re are unsure about where the valve is located, Becht/Givens Service Experts can help you find it.

It’s also a good idea to get a water leak protection system that will turn on an alarm and shut off the water if there’s a problem. You can even get a smart system to watch water use and alert you on your phone if there’s a leak.

Whatever plumbing trouble you’re faced with, our Expert plumbers at Becht/Givens Service Experts are ready to provide support. 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 completed like they should. Contact us at 502-785-8230 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.
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