8 Plumbing Tips for New Homeowners 

Are you ready to be a new homeowner? Congratulations! It’s thrilling to own a home and not have to deal with a landlord. Nevertheless, homeownership comes with plenty of new responsibilities. For one, you are now in charge of keeping the pipes and plumbing fixtures in good condition.

The last thing you want is to deal with a plumbing issue immediately after moving in, so it’s wise to confirm everything is squared away before closing day. Consider these eight valuable plumbing tips every new homeowner should know.

1. Request a Plumbing Inspection

Once you pick out your dream home, it’s a good idea to get a professional plumbing inspection. This can reveal previously hidden issues with the supply lines, fixtures, appliances and drains you might not have known about. Weak water pressure or a slow toilet leak won’t always be a deal-breaker, but it’s better to take care of these problems before moving in.

2. Try to find any Pipe Insulation

The pipes could freeze and burst if they’re exposed to cold temperatures. No new homeowner wants to deal with that, so take a look at all exposed pipes before you move in. If the pipes aren’t insulated, this low-cost upgrade is a valuable preventive measure for frozen and burst pipes.

3. Locate the Main Water Shutoff Valve

Shutting off the water to your house can significantly reduce property damage if you have a major emergency such as a burst pipe. But you must first know where the valve can be found.

If the property has a basement or crawl space, the shutoff valve is most likely situated on a wall along the front of the house. If the building is on a slab foundation, check the garage or near the water heater.

Still no luck? The shutoff valve is occasionally located in a utility box buried near the street. Look for a round or rectangular metal cover by the grass or sidewalk. It could be labeled “water meter” to help you identify it.

If you still can’t track down the primary water shutoff valve, call a plumber for help locating it before you have an emergency.

4. Find Individual Shutoff Valves

Along with the main shutoff valve, most fixtures and appliances should have dedicated valves for the wall behind them. This allows you to turn off the water while making repairs or to reduce damage after an emergency. Familiarize yourself with the location of all plumbing valves anytime you buy a new house.

5. Know the Signs of a Plumbing Leak

Water damage is the biggest concern relating to plumbing leaks, but a leaky faucet can also drain your wallet. As an example, just one drip every second wastes more than 1,600 gallons per year. To prevent this, watch for any signs of plumbing leaks in your new home:

    • Dripping or bubbling sounds
    • A spike in water bills
    • Changing water meter readings despite not using any water
    • Standing water, wood rot or mold growth under your sinks
    • Loose toilet
    • Water stains on the ceilings and walls
    • Lasting musty odors

6. Purchase a Basic Plumbing Emergency Kit

Despite what you may have heard, chemical drain openers don’t belong in a plumbing emergency kit. These corrosive cleaners can harm your pipes if used frequently. In addition, they only offer a temporary solution at best.

An effective alternative is to have non-chemical supplies on hand the next time you have a plumbing crisis. These include:

    • Cup plunger for clogged sinks, tubs and showers
    • Flange plunger for clogged toilets
    • Hand-crank drain snake for small blockages
    • Adjustable wrench to remove the P-trap from under clogged sinks
    • Utility bucket to catch water from a leaky pipe
    • Plumber’s tape to fix leaky showerheads
    • Duct tape to stem the flow of a plumbing leak until a plumber arrives

7. Prevent Clogged Drains from Day One

Anything that flows down the drain apart from water could cause a clog. Use your drains flowing smoothly with these preventive tips:

    • Install mesh drain covers in bathroom sinks and showers
    • Don’t flush anything down the toilet other than human waste and a small amount of toilet paper
    • Don’t pour cooking oil down the kitchen sink
    • Pour a large pot of near-boiling water down every drain each month

8. Keep a Plumber on Speed Dial

While our plumbing tips for new homeowners should keep many problems from happening, it’s always smart to know a reliable plumber in town. For reliable, affordable work, there’s no better place to turn than Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing.

We have locations across North America to serve customers from coast to coast. When you choose our insured plumbers for the job, you can rest assured that every repair and installation job is backed by a one-year 100% satisfaction guarantee. Contact your local Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing office to request plumbing services with us today.

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