A clogged drain is more than just a minor inconvenience. A major clog can be expensive, smelly, time-consuming and a health hazard to you and your family. Large clogs can cause backups into the house which may require cleaning or replacing flooring, furniture, and other personal items. In addition to causing problems in your home, poorly maintained drains also have a negative impact on the environment. Clogs can strain municipal systems and interfere with natural waterways, affecting wildlife, fish, and plants.
Spring is the season for cleaning out closets and cupboards and getting rid of all the junk you no longer need. Why not do the same for your drains?
The first step for good drain maintenance is to be careful with what you put into them. Some drain-clogging items like hair and soap scum can’t be avoided, but other materials can. For environmental reasons, never pour toxic chemicals, paint, solvents or medications in your drain. Some chemicals may also be corrosive to pipes. Solid items such as cotton balls, paper towels or pre-moistened wipes should never be flushed down the toilet or put in a drain. Unlike toilet paper, these items aren’t made to break down in a septic tank or sewer. Cooking fat, grease and oil can solidify in the pipe, causing nasty clogs. Contact your local waste management company to learn about your options for disposing of these items.
Cleaning stoppers and drain covers on a weekly basis will help prevent a buildup of debris. Remove the stopper or cover and use a bent wire to pull out hair and other gunk that has accumulated. Be sure to place the debris in the trash.
Use a non-corrosive, biodegradable drain cleaner to keep drains clear.
Don’t forget the garbage disposal. Clean it easily and naturally by grinding several cups of ice mixed with a tablespoon or two of salt. Flush with cold water then grind a cut lime or half a lemon to freshen and remove any remaining grease from the blades.
Even with regular upkeep, drains clog, pipes break and fixtures leak. A yearly maintenance checkup from a professional plumber can prevent expensive and inconvenient drainage problems that the average homeowner may not detect. After a thorough inspection from Terry’s Plumbing, we may suggest one or more of the following yearly services:
At Terry’s Plumbing, we think drain maintenance should be on everyone’s spring-cleaning list. If you’ve been a little lax on upkeep, or if you’re having plumbing problems despite regular care, contact Terry’s Plumbing at 412-364-9114 and we’ll spring into action for you!