What Every Homeowner Needs to Know About Home Plumbing Maintenance

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When you’re out scoping homes, there are myriad variables to ponder: the number of bedrooms, the size of the backyard, any kitchen details – plus the type of house, flooring, and surroundings. However, one essential element that’s often overlooked is the plumbing system.

Regrettably, plumbing complications can unexpectedly arise and easily set you back a hefty sum. This could be especially catastrophic if you’ve just moved in or have been living there for a while. That’s why it’s critical to get an understanding of the home’s plumbing components prior to committing to a purchase agreement.

Plumbing Maintenance That Homeowners Must Understand

Plumbing powers the important utilities in our homes. It helps us to accomplish daily and essential tasks such as showering, cooking, and even washing.

Plumbing intricacies can be quite perplexing for the average homeowner, especially when faced with emergency leaks or blockages that demand immediate attention. While understanding the basics is crucial, seeking professional advice and services is often the key to resolving these issues efficiently.

For instance, Sarkinen Plumbing, often revered as Vancouver’s top trusted plumber, provides a plethora of plumbing services and offers an abundance of insightful information on their platform, helping users comprehend various aspects of plumbing solutions and maintenance.

Engaging with such adept professionals not only helps in ameliorating immediate issues but also serves as a preventative measure for potential future plumbing predicaments. Their expertise covers an extensive range of topics and offers practical solutions, particularly to those who may find themselves in a watery predicament unannounced.

Understanding the intricacies of your home’s plumbing system can be a daunting task. From the pipes that bring water into your home, to the drains that take waste away, every component plays a vital role in ensuring your home runs smoothly.

By investing in professional plumbing services, you’re not just fixing a problem. You’re investing in the longevity and efficiency of your home. So, whether you’re dealing with a minor issue or planning a major renovation, remember that professional plumbing expertise is just a click away.

But a lot of people, unfortunately, don’t give plumbing much thought.  Yet that’s all we can think of whenever something goes wrong. A basic understanding of your plumbing system and plumbing supplies from PlumbersStock will help you troubleshoot. It will also help with doing small repairs on your own and knowing when to call a plumber.

A little knowledge on plumbing can save you money in service calls. It will also prevent the headaches that are brought by breakdowns. It’s for these reasons that we share this article, to ensure that you know more about plumbing supplies. 

Maintaining the DWV System

Clogging is the biggest problem that’s associated with the Drain-Waste-Vent system. Hair is the most common cause of clogging in the bathroom while grease takes the number one position in kitchen clogging. To mitigate such issues, you’ll need to frequently empty clean out plugs.

Homeowners are also required to be on the lookout for leaks. The DWV’s piping is hidden most of the time. And mold infestation, damp ceilings, and stinky rooms are some of the tell-tale signs of leaks.

Leaks can also lead to structural damage in a building. That’s why it’s important that you look for a professional plumber to check the piping system for leaks.

Always remember that when it comes to plumbing issues, just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean that it isn’t there. That’s considering that statistics show that 10 percent of the homes in the United States lose 90 gallons to leaks every day. 

repairing pipe
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Drain Traps

Drain traps, also known as P traps are U-shaped pipes that help in preventing backflow in a plumbing system. These pipes can also hold water consistently because of their curvature.

But why should a drain pipe hold water?

The Drain-Water-Vent system connects your house to the sewer line. This means that sewer gasses can turn your house into a stink-fest, unless of course, you have a drain trap. Drain traps are also great to have because they allow grease, hair, and other debris to sediment.

But the good news is that the debris can be removed through clean out plugs. That’s why you need the traps to ensure that the debris does not move down the pipe and cause clogging. 

Get Acquainted with Your Water Heater

As a homeowner, you need to be able to find the shutoff valve for water and the electric or gas supply on the heating boiler system.

When it comes to the gas water heater, you need to turn the gas-supply line knob clockwise. For an electric water heater, you’ll have to find the breaker or fuse that supplies it and turn it off.

With the water supply, there’s always a handle near where the home heating boiler connects to the main line. Note that the water heater has two water lines to it. You’re supposed to turn off the cold, incoming water instead of the line carrying hot water out of the heater.

Your water heater must have a temperature gauge near the top or the bottom, as it is from here that you’ll be able to adjust the temperature. The dial comes with three settings- low, medium, and high.

Others have a screw or a different set up for you to adjust the temperature either up or down. But if you’re not sure about adjusting the temperature, get a professional plumber to do it for you.

You must ensure that you check all the pipes and accessories that are attached to the water heater regularly for leaks. Also, it never hurts to place some kind of drip pan underneath the hot water heater. Usually, water heaters last about 10 – 12 years. And they mostly start leaking towards the end of their life. 

Plunge a Toilet

Toilets can clog. But you don’t have to worry if you have the right kind of plunger or plumbing tool.

To start with, don’t assume that a tiny sink plunger will work in the toilet. You can purchase a toilet plunger that’s designed with a higher and more rounded hood. It must also have an extended flange.

A plunger basically uses manually produced suctions to create pressure and clear the clog. Thus, you must ensure that there’s enough water in the bowl to cover the top of the plunger. If there isn’t enough water, avoid flushing and instead take some water from the sink to place on top of the plunger.

Place the plunger into the hole at the bottom of the toilet. Thrust it up and down while maintaining its contact with the toilet bowl. This will cause the clog to clear and the toilet will be able to flush. If it fails to flush, keep on plunging until you hear the toilet try to flush. 

Maintaining the Water Supply System

A correctly installed piping system is leak-proof, even though the system disintegrates with time. There are times when a plumber will find it necessary to do a complete overhaul of the plumbing.

Keep in mind that the water supply system performs optimally when pressure is high. This causes the system to be very sensitive to damage.

A leak in the drainage system, for instance, only causes damp-related issues. But the leak in the water supply system takes things a step further by affecting water pressure. Low pressure makes it difficult to run showers and flush the toilet.

Leaks are clearly harmful in the water supply system. It’s because of such sensitivity of the system that problems are best handled by a professional plumber. 

plumbing with gauge and valve
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Know Where the Main Shut off Valve is

Have you ever watched a movie where the faucet starts spraying water all over the kitchen? No one can see anything and people are slipping and flipping, then finally someone shuts off the water.

Well, that may be you, unless of course, you know where the main shut off is. This valve is usually located near the water heater. You can find it in the basement or on an outside wall in a utility area of the house.

The main shut off valve is the entry point or the main source of water. In situations where there is a major leak, just stop the water by turning the valve counter clockwise. 


A plumbing system can either make or break a house. Maintaining this system ensures that the house remains of high value. Thus, it’s important that professional plumbers be involved in your house’s maintenance schedule.

Proper plumbing activities also help to ensure that the house is free of allergenic mold. A lot of people, unfortunately, only find out about the mold problem when selling the house. This is saddening considering the health risks posed by these molds.

Learning which products to use for various jobs—like faucets, pipes, tubing, and valves—is key. You’ll also want to become familiar with the different types of plumbing materials, from metallic pipes to joint sealants. 

Plumbing is undeniably one of the integral parts of any home or business establishment, and this article effectively sheds light on key aspects that everyone should be aware of. However, while understanding the basics is crucial, having a professional plumbing service that you can rely on in times of need is equally paramount.

That’s why it’s beneficial to be informed about expert services that specialize in various plumbing areas such as water heater repair. Curious to learn more about how professionals handle intricate plumbing issues, especially related to water heaters? There are additional Bonuses you might uncover by exploring how Carlson Plumbing Company manages to keep the flow steady and troubles at bay in Vancouver, WA, offering a range of services that cater to diverse plumbing needs and challenges.

We hope that with the vital plumbing basics in this article, you’ll start appreciating the role that good plumbing plays in your home.

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Steven Weissman
I grew up working on my family's small farm in western New York state. We did a lot of projects ourselves, which taught me not to be intimidated by DIY projects. So now I like to write about DIY topics to help others gain confidence to try to do things on their own.