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If you want your home to look great for decades, you need to take care of it. This doesn’t mean simply trimming a few trees and keeping your lawn bright and green; you also have to keep an eye on some of the more hidden parts of your home. For example, watching out for plumbing and electrical problems can save you the hassle of having to deal with extensive damage to your home. If you’re looking for a little help when it comes to knowing when to call a plumber and taking care of your plumbing, we’ve got you covered.
Water Shut Off Valve
As a homeowner, one of the most important things you can know is where your main water shut off valve is located. When you’ve got a plumbing emergency that’s wasting tons of water, shutting off the water to your home should be your first course of action along with calling a plumber.
As far as where your water shut off valve is located, it depends on the home. In homes with a basement, the water shut off valve is generally located there. If your home doesn’t have a basement, the valve may be located in an outside wall near a utility region of your home. If you’re having trouble figuring out where your shut off valve is, you can have a plumber show you to simplify things.
When you know where your main shut off valve is, you can incorporate it into your plumbing emergency plan. If you’ve ever got a leak or a problem that requires shutting the water off to minimize damage, you can simply head to your main shut off valve and turn it counter-clockwise to cut water to your home.
Hot Water Temperature
Another important thing to consider as a homeowner is how hot the hot water in your home is. You can set your water heater to a specific temperature to better control energy use and make sure the water is comfortable for you. However, any plumber will tell you it’s important to make sure you’re setting your water heater to the right temperature.
The Department of Energy recommends setting your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit, which is enough to kill bacteria but not so hot that it will burn your skin. Most manufacturers preset water heaters to about 140 degrees, so you’ve got plenty of room to play with if your water is a little too hot when you have a new water heater installed.
One thing to remember is that your energy bill may change quite a bit depending on how hot you keep your water, so it’s best to find a happy medium between comfort and efficiency.
If you’re like most Mesa, AZ, homeowners, you probably reach for a bottle of chemical drain cleaner like Drano when you’ve got a clog in your home. The fact of the matter is, these drain cleaners can cause more problems than they tend to fix, which is why most plumbers recommend using something else.
Chemical-based drain cleaners can cause damage to the pipes in your home, wearing them down over time and leading to leaks and other problems. Instead, you should look for an enzyme-based drain cleaner. Plumbers tend to use enzyme-based drain cleaners because they remove clogs without damaging your pipes. These cleaners contain enzymes that eat away at the clogs in your pipes but not the pipes themselves, which means you can safely use them to remove clogs and keep your pipes clean over time.
Nobody wants to spend a fortune on their water bill, but that’s exactly what can happen if you’re not careful. Using too much water is actually easier than you might think, particularly if you’ve got fixtures in your home that use more than the average fixture. The good news is, you can have a plumber install low-flow fixtures in your home so you don’t have to worry about wasting too much water.
Low-flow toilets and efficient dishwashers and washing machines are a fairly big investment, but those aren’t the only things you can do to save money. If you want to use less water in the bathroom or kitchen, there are shower and faucet attachments that convert your existing fixtures into low-flow ones. You don’t have to worry about spending money on completely new fixtures, but you still get the benefit of using a fraction of the water.
When to Call
One of the most important things you can know about plumbing as a homeowner is when it’s time to call a plumber for help. Hiring a professional is always important if you want to get things fixed the right way and prevent potential damage from attempted home repairs.
If you’ve got a burst pipe or what you suspect may be a sewage backup, you should call an emergency plumber right away. These problems get worse quickly and are dangerous to deal with, so getting help is critical.
You should also call a professional for any problems that may cause additional damage or otherwise cost you money if they’re left for too long. While a pinhole leak might not seem like a big deal, it will only get worse with time and will eventually cost you more in structural repairs.
A Little Help
Owning a home isn’t easy, especially if you want to keep things in great shape inside and out. However, the best way to simplify the process is to understand the basics of plumbing and when to call a pro.
If you’ve got a plumbing problem in your Mesa, AZ, home, Schroeder Plumbing is here to help. If your problem is particularly time-sensitive, you can call one of our emergency plumbers to get your problem fixed fast. When it comes to taking care of the plumbing in your home, calling Schroeder Plumbing is the easy route.