The world is suffering from COVID-19 seriously. Businesses around the globe are shrinking. Markets are running out of daily commodities. The entire agility and busyness of life out there have almost come to a standstill.
But life never stops. Never does the problems and complexities of life either. As we have almost the same routine at home the household breaking and splittings and spoiling go on. Same for the wear and tear of home appliances.
The plumbing system, for example, often goes wrong. The most common of the issues are leaks in the pipes and joints. Ignoring them can make things worse and add an extra cost of fixtures. And the present lockdown situation may make it more difficult to hire a plumber and get his materials from the market.
The best solution is to prevent a leak before it appears. Here are some tips that you may follow to prevent leaks:
Knowing Your Home’s Main Water Shut Off Valve
Know the location of home’s main water shut off valve. If you’re going out for a long time you’d better shut it off. This prevents the chance of any oozing out that can gradually lead to greater damage or any other trouble.
Checking Your Appliances Regularly
Using Flushables Only
During the present crisis of COVID-19, toilet papers are out of the market in many places. Naturally, people are using alternatives like tissues, napkins, and wet wipes. Whether you can use them or not doesn’t matter but what matters is that they are not completely water-soluble.
They can form lumps and clog the pipes, mainly at their terminals. This causes pressure in the pipes to rise and ultimately burst or leak over time.
Not Passing Everything Through the Pipe
So many of us are not aware while washing sticky and fibrous daily food waste materials out which could deposit along the inner surface of the pipes for months. The result is the same as above: first building outward pressure or complete blockage and finally resulting in the rupture of the pipe.
This is a very healthy practice for the sewer lines that are often found getting clogged. Experts say that you should have these lines cleaned every 18-22 months as a good preventive measure. And if the problems persist to occur more often than that you probably need to video inspect your pipes.
Emergency Plumbers can do it by inserting a video camera down through your pipes and detect where the exact problem is. Then it becomes easy for them to decide what measure they’d take for the best solution.
Using Plumber’s Tape
Also known as Teflon tape this tool is used to seal leaks in fixtures and joints. It’s really useful as you can use it yourself without reaching out to a plumber if the leak is a small one or not a serious one. All you need to do is to wrap the tape around the leaking part of the component several times to ensure it lasts. It’s so easy.
Detecting Air Leaks
The plumbing leaks should not be overlooked. “It can be a cause for alarm”, says Roger Wakefield, a plumbing expert from Texas. It does not only result in a greater water disaster in your home but also can damage the wall from the moisture it creates from the leak. Later on, the whole area where the moisture spread could suffer serious damage which means an extra expense.
You don’t always need a plumber to have detected a leakage. You can do it yourself.
Direct Detection: Generally the signs of water damage on the wall (such as discoloration, mold, damp spots) or moisture around a joint or a pipe indicate a leak. The floor around the washing machine may have moisture; hoses may have it; dishwasher and fridge can also have moisture. Wherever you find it you must take it seriously and go for prompt repair.
Indirect Detection: Check your water for a high concentration of minerals. If the concentration (generally referred to as ‘hardness’) is more than the safety limit, you must feel alarmed because it’s one of the main agents of corrosion of the pipe.
High water pressure can be another enemy. If you’ve got more than 60 psi, your pipe is going to break down soon. You need to check your pressure and keep it under 60 psi.
Another wise step can be watching your regular water bill. If you find any unusual increase of the amount in the bill you can decide to have your whole water system checked.
Preventing Air Leak Techniques
Not all precautions work well all the time. If you do find any leak anytime, you can instantly go for a temporary repair (stop the leak) before you can call a plumber at your convenience.
Follow these steps:
- Shut off the water valve. This will prevent the water from flowing to the area where the leak has appeared.
- Turn on any faucets that are connected to the pipe you’re working on. You can also use an air compressor to remove any water from the leaky pipe.
- Get the pipe completely dry before you go for the next step. You need to remove any condensation and water from the pipe. You can use a towel or cloth to wipe it to dry.
- For an initial ‘life hack’ kind of sealing of the leak, there are two options for you to choose. If the leak is round or semi-round you can stick the tip of a sharp pencil in the leak hole and break the lead in the hole. The lead should roughly fit the hole. Then you can cover the area of the pipe with epoxy. This process may not work if the leak is a crack. In that case, you take the second option.
The second way is even simpler— you apply epoxy directly to the leaking area.
- Wrap the sealed area with rubber or a piece of gardening hose. In order to keep the rubber or piece of hose in place using a metal hose clamp.
- Finally to make the whole process waterproof, wrap the area with plumbers tape.
Plumbing problems occur without any notice and can cause you loss or damage to surrounding walls and furniture and even sometimes flood your floor. You should, therefore, be well alert for any of the unwanted situations.