There are a lot of moving parts to property maintenance. From structural safety to security and aesthetics, the list just never seems to end. It is, therefore, understandable that some maintenance aspects like plumbing would slip through the cracks. Plumbing maintenance is, however, crucial. Moreover, the longer you put it off the more you are likely to spend on repairs when things come to a head. Worse still, your property could be rendered uninhabitable.
So, if you have been postponing or have no idea where to start with plumbing maintenance, let’s explore some important procedures.
Think of plumbing inspections as diagnostic checks. They help you understand what areas of your plumbing system are faulty and which ones are altogether due for replacement. More importantly, plumbing inspections help you avoid wastage and disaster. Detecting leaks or weaknesses in the piping early could be what saves you from a pipe bursting and causing a flood. A professional plumber could perform the inspection for you and give you a quote on the cost of repairs. This may also enable you to prioritize urgent issues if your budget is limited.
Flushing the System
Over time, pipes accumulate sediment and slowly start to clog up. Sinks may start not to drain properly and water from taps may appear turbid, have sediment particles, or flow with less pressure. These are all major concerns that could pose health risks in both commercial and residential properties. Flushing the system helps clear pipes of sediment and, sometimes, rust too. In a residential property, flushing can be done by running all taps at full pressure. The goal is to harness the force of the water to break off the sediment and push it out. This can also be done for water heaters with tanks as sediment diminishes their efficiency. In severe cases or if you would simply like to ensure your pipes are thoroughly cleaned, productive chemicals can be used. They soften the sediment and make it easy to push it out of the piping. However, the use of chemicals can be complex and risky, and thus it is advisable to leave it to a professional.
Replacing Worn and Outdated Piping
Like all other building components, plumbing systems deteriorate after a while. Pipes get weaker, rust, or get punctured in various ways. The result is a compromised plumbing system that may not serve you as well as it should. On the other hand, it could be that your plumbing system consists of outdated and even prohibited piping materials. Lead pipes, for example, are banned due to the toxic nature of lead deposits in water. Other materials such as galvanized steel pipes and polybutylene are equally not recommended for health safety reasons.
If your plumbing inspection flags any of these issues, it is best to consult your plumber on suitable piping replacement options and have those installed. It may, undoubtedly, be a very expensive undertaking but it is inevitable and could save your property from being condemned.
Control and Safety Measures
It is important that you are able to control your plumbing system. Control systems, in this case, include provisions like taps and a main shut off system. For this, you would need suitable plumbing valves that fit your plumbing system and respond promptly when you need to shut off or regulate the flow of water. Further, on safety, adding components such as strainers to your plumbing system may be a good idea. They may help keep sediment and similar debris from clogging your pipes. Like the valves, they should be compatible with your piping system with regard to size. Make an effort to consult a reliable valves and strainers manufacturer on what options would be best for your property. Aim for a company that can customize the valves and strainers to match your pipes.
Septic Tank Maintenance
The fastest way to get health authorities to shut down your building would be to get flagged for poor septic maintenance. The stench that comes with it is unbearable and there is also the cringe-worthy risk of sewer leaks contaminating water lines. It sounds crazy but it is, in fact, a very real possibility. In light of these very grave consequences, it is imperative that you follow septic tank maintenance protocols with military precision. Some key pointers you could follow include:
- Always ensure the septic tank lid is in place
- Have the septic tank pumped regularly
- Avoid water drainage towards the area of the drain field
- Try and occasionally schedule high-pressure water jetting to unclog the septic plumbing system
Extremely cold temperatures can wreak havoc on plumbing systems. Pipes often contract and can, in some instances, shutter. As a result, water flow may be affected, or in, worse case scenarios, it may be interrupted altogether.
Make an effort to insulate water pipes that are in areas prone to heavy amounts of snow. These include the roof, basement, or water pipes that run above ground. To mitigate indoor pipe freezes, ensure that your heating system is running efficiently.
Plumbing is a fundamental basic need as it is inextricably linked to hygiene and subsequently human health. Any lapses in your property’s plumbing could, therefore, see you become liable for public health violations and cost you way more than money. Now that you have some guidelines on where to begin, it’s as good a time as any to schedule your property plumbing maintenance, wouldn’t you say?