Plumbing on the Road: Plumbing for RVs and Campers

4-Step Guide For Finding Hidden Minor Water Pipe Leaks In Your Home

Posted by on Feb 10, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4-Step Guide For Finding Hidden Minor Water Pipe Leaks In Your Home

If your water bill has unexpectedly increased by as much as 10 percent for no apparent reason, you may wonder if you have a hidden leak in one your pipes. If so, use the following four-step guide to try to find signs of a possible leak. Step 1:  Draw A Rough Diagram Of Your Home The first step involves preparing for the self-inspection of your home. This is done by drawing a rough diagram of your home where you can mark any potential problem spots you find. By having everything written down, you can show the areas of concern to a plumber, if you find you need one after confirming your suspicions of a leak. On your diagram, label each room. Also, mark all doorways and windows. You can use a key to make them, and draw a square for windows and circles for doors. Once you have your drawing, perform the following three steps in each room before moving on to the next. Step 2:  Try To Detect Musty Odors In this step, first stand in the middle of the room, and breathe deeply. Try to see if you detect any musty or stale odors. These smells could be a sign of mold or mildew that has started to grow inside the walls where a water leak has created a moist, dark environment in which it can thrive. If you do detect a faint odor, start moving around the room to find where it smells the strongest. Mark your diagram with an “S” to designate any areas where you detect the smells. Then, go on to the next step. Step 3:  Look For Discolorations On The Floors, Walls Or Ceilings After marking the areas of the room where you found strong musty odors, look around for any discolorations on the floor, walls, or ceiling. This is often a sign of water seeping through the structures from a leaking pipe underneath. Most likely, the locations of the discolorations will correspond to the areas you marked in step two. If someone in your home smokes, this could affect the coloring as well. However, you still want to mark down all areas where you see discolorations so you can check them in the next step. Mark each area where you see a difference in color with a “D.” Then, go on to the fourth step. Step 4:  Feel Around For Moisture Or Soft Spots This step involves feeling around the room with your hand to see if you find any moisture on the walls. Pay particular attention to any areas on your diagram that have been marked for odors or discolorations, especially if you have any that are marked as both. This could be a strong indicator that you have water leaking in from inside the walls, floor, or ceiling. As you slowly run your hand along the surfaces, make a note of any moist spots by marking them with an “M.” Once you have completed your tactile sweep of the room, return to those areas, and push the surfaces gently with your index finger. If you detect a soft spot, this could be a sign that a water leak is causing the deterioration of the material. Mark these places with an “S,” then repeat steps two through four for each room to...

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3 Things To Inquire About When Hiring A Plumber For Yearly Inspections

Posted by on Jan 9, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Things To Inquire About When Hiring A Plumber For Yearly Inspections

Most professionals agree that homeowners should have their plumbing systems inspected once a year to ensure optimal performance and to keep wear and tear to a minimum. Everything from the indoor faucets and drains to the exterior hose nozzles and pipes need some attention every year. Without a yearly inspection, you run the risk of having to face the need for expensive repairs and replacements as time goes on. You’ll need an experienced plumber to rely on for proper inspections, so take the time to compare a few options in your area before committing to a working relationship with any one service provider. Here are a few things to inquire about when consulting with potential plumbers: Inspection Access It is also important to consider the need for access to certain parts of your home during plumbing inspections, because you don’t know if you or another family member can commit to being there and personally granting access when the time comes. After all, you may happen to plan a family vacation or only be able to book day appointments while at work when the time comes to schedule your plumbing maintenance in the future. When speaking with potential plumbers during your initial consultation meetings, find out what parts of your home they’ll need access to so they can thoroughly inspect each aspect of your plumbing system. The need for access to different areas of your home will depend on the type of equipment each plumber has, the specific services that are included in their inspection plans, and the precise locations of things like the water heater and pipes. Once you find out what’s included in each prospective plumber’s inspection checklist and what parts of your home they’ll need access to, you can compare the information, determine which one is likely to be the least intrusive and most reliable in the long-run, and decide how you’ll provide the access they need during appointments.   Performance Guarantees You’ll be relying on your plumber to keep your system in optimal working condition throughout the years, and you deserve some type of guarantee for the work that they do during each inspection appointment. If a faulty piece of equipment such as a pipe fitting or a water pump is installed during an appointment, it should be replaced at no charge. If a water line bursts during an inspection due to neglect, you shouldn’t have to pay for the repairs. If a faucet wasn’t installed correctly and it creates a flood in the kitchen, your service provider should come clean up the mess and make repairs as soon as possible. Get a list of guarantees from each plumber you consider hiring in writing, so you have a clear understanding of what to expect from each of them before making a hiring decision. Service Discount Options Many plumbers offer discounts for certain services they provide if those services are ordered at the same time, which means that you may be able to save some money later down the road if you need a new furnace installed or require pipe insulating for winter. Ask each prospective plumber you talk with about any discounts they’re able to offer for any extra services you order to be done during your inspection appointments. For instance, your service provider may offer...

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2 Common Reasons Your Home’s Sewer Main Can Fail And How To Remedy It

Posted by on Jul 19, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 2 Common Reasons Your Home’s Sewer Main Can Fail And How To Remedy It

As the owner of an older home, you are responsible for any repairs to or replacement of your home’s main sewer line. So, it is important to understand the potential damage that can occur in an aging sewer main. Here are some common causes of a damaged sewer main and options for its replacement. Age Depending on the age of your home, you can have one of several different types of sewer pipe buried in your front yard and connecting to the city’s sewer main. Many older homes were originally installed with sewer pipe that was not created to last as long as your home. These types of pipe may now have begun to deteriorate and collapse within the soil of your front yard. Cast iron was frequently used before 1960 as a sewer pipe, and is a durable material to withstand the weight of the soil upon it and intrusion from tree roots. A four-inch cast iron sewer pipe can withstand 4,877 pounds of pressure per linear foot. Unfortunately, it can rust and corrode, over time. The waste water flowing through cast iron pipe etches a channel into the bottom of the pipe, eventually eroding through the pipe and weakening its entire structure. This can occur because the waste running through the pipe creates hydrogen sulfide gas, which can oxidize and produce sulfuric acid to corrode the cast iron. Also, some drain cleaners contain sulfuric acid, which can further corrode the inside of your cast iron sewer pipe. Another type of older sewer line is Orangeburg pipe, which is made from wood fibers combined with an adhesive and impregnated with tar pitch. This type of lightweight but brittle sewer pipe began to be used as sewer pipe in the mid to late 1940s until the 1960s, when it was replaced by PVC sewer pipe. If you have Orangeburg pipe installed as your home’s sewer line, you will most likely need to replace it. Orangeburg commonly collapses after years of moisture have permeated the interior of the pipe, weakening the pipe’s walls; then the addition of the weight of the soil around the pipe causes it to collapse. Also, when Orangeburg sewer pipe was installed, the pipe should have been surrounded with a layer of gravel to prevent its collapse under the weight of the surrounding soil. When this step was skipped during installation, it can cause your pipe to collapse after years of soil weight pressing directly upon it. Tree Roots Clay is another type of sewer pipe that has been used for many years but can degrade and collapse under certain conditions. Although clay is made from inert materials, which make it resistant to chemically degrading, it has a porous surface that tree roots are attracted to. Tree roots growing beneath the soil will seek out and grow toward any high levels of moisture or nutrients, including a leaking connection on a clay sewer pipe. The roots will find their way into a small crack in the pipe to get to the waste materials inside. Once inside, the roots will explode in growth from the nutrient-rich waste, filling the entire sewer pipe with tree roots and causing blockages. Replacement Options When your sewer main has failed, it can be necessary to replace the pipe with a newer material that is not penetrable by tree roots, such...

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5 Things To Know About Drains And Grease

Posted by on Jun 8, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Things To Know About Drains And Grease

While you most likely know that grease can be one of the main causes for kitchen clogs, you may not know how complicated the issue of plumbing and grease can be. Below are five things every homeowner should know about drains and grease.  Grease Does Not Only Come From Meat  One of the most common culprits for grease clogs is grease from meat, especially bacon or other meats that release large amounts of grease when fried. However, grease build-up can be caused by several types of fats and oils. Butter, lard, or any oil that is solid at room temperature can cause clogs. Additionally, oils that are liquid at room temperature can cause food to stick in your drain. To avoid clogs, make sure to throw any excess food that was cooked with any type of fat or oil into your trash can as opposed to your sink. Additionally, give your plates and cooking pots a quick wipe with a paper towel to remove excess fats before washing them.  Your Kitchen Sink Is Not The Only Source Of Grease In Your System   When you think of grease clogs, you probably think of what you put down your kitchen sink. However, other drain lines can get clogged with grease as well. Your dishwasher drain line, your washing machine drain line, and your toilet drain line can all suffer from grease buildup. It is important that you consider all of the items that go into these drain lines and use degreaser when appropriate. For example, spraying a degreaser on your clothing can prevent grease clogs after your washing machine.  You May Be Able to Recycle or Compost Your Oils  If you do not feel comfortable throwing away large amounts of grease or oil, you should consider contacting your local recycling company to see if they have a program in place to recycle used oils. Many cities recycle cooking oils into bio-fuels or soaps.  If you have a small quantity of oil that has not been used to cook meat, cheese, or fish, you can generally add it to your compost bin. Alternatively, cooking oils that are solid at room temperature can be used to make fat ball bird feeders. This involves mixing birdseed with some fat, allowing it to harden, and then hanging it from a tree in your yard.   Removing Grease Monthly Will Help Prevent Clogs  Despite your best efforts, if you cook with fats it is likely that you will eventually have some grease make it down your drains. You can clean your drains monthly to prevent grease from building up and causing a clog. To do this, you should mix equal parts boiling water with vinegar and pour it down your drain. The heat from the water will soften the grease and the vinegar will help eat away at the grease. After a few minutes, you should pour a pot of plain boiling water down your drain to rinse away the grease and vinegar.  If your kitchen pipes are PEX as opposed to metal, you may want to use nearly boiling water as opposed to fully boiling water to prevent unnecessary damage to your pipes.  Some Drains Benefit From The Addition Of Oil  Although fats and oils should generally be avoiding in your pipes, there is...

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3 Things To Know About Dual-Flush Toilets

Posted by on Dec 23, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Things To Know About Dual-Flush Toilets

If you are getting ready to make some updates to your bathrooms and would like to replace your old toilets, you may want to look into dual-flush toilets. These toilets are designed to handle urine and waste in different ways, and they offer several key benefits over traditional types of toilets. As you begin shopping for the right toilets, you might be interested in learning more about dual-flush systems. Here are three things to understand about these particular types of toilets. They Have Been Around For Several Decades The first dual-flush toilet was actually created in 1980 by an Australian man named Bruce Thompson. Thompson created it for the purpose of conserving water, and this was accomplished by offering two different flushing mechanisms. Each button was designed to handle a different purpose, and each one offered a different amount of fresh water to wash the waste or urine down the toilet. These toilets are extremely popular in places with water shortages, including Australia and Europe, but they are also becoming popular in the U.S. The original toilet created in 1980 was redesigned in 1994 as a way of making these toilets usable in homes. How They Work A dual-flush toilet can be used like any type of toilet, but it handles the waste in two different ways. If you urinate only in the toilet, you can press the button designed for this purpose. When you do this, the urine is washed away with a small amount of water. When waste enters the toilet, the process of eliminating it is slightly different. When you push the waste button, the waste is forced down the toilet. The difference is that a dual-flush toilet has a larger hole at the bottom of the toilet, and it uses less water to push the waste out of the toilet. Traditional toilets rely on the power of air and siphoning to force the waste down the hole, but this is not the case with dual-flush toilets. These toilets rely on a large hole at the bottom, as well as a great force of water to eliminate the waste. The Benefits They Offer One of the main benefits these toilets offer is water conservation. When a dual-flush toilet is used to eliminate urine, it requires only 0.75 gallons of water to do it. To eliminate waste, it requires approximately 1.5 gallons of water. Older toilets can use up to seven gallons of water per flush, which is a lot of wasted water, especially to wash urine down a toilet. With traditional toilets, you do not have the option of choosing the type of flush to use. There is only one lever or button, and pushing it will release the same amount of water each time you use it. Because of this, you could save thousands of gallons of water per year. If you have a well, this might not matter a lot to you. If you have city water and are paying by the gallon, this could help you save money on your water bills each month. Another key benefit of dual-flush toilets is their ability to flush waste. These toilets are much better at handling waste because of their design, and this is a benefit because you will be less likely to experience toilet clogs...

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The Audible Guide To Bathroom Plumbing Problems

Posted by on Dec 19, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Audible Guide To Bathroom Plumbing Problems

It’s easy to see visual plumbing problems in your bathroom like water leaks or standing water in your tub. One of the harder problems to diagnose are random sounds that come from the toilet and bathroom as a whole. By carefully listening to the troubling sounds in your bathroom, you can hone in on what the actual problem is and make it easier for when describing the problem to a plumber. Figuring out the source of the noise and the potential problem can also help you budget the possible costs for parts and labor. Clug, Clug, Clug After using the sink or shower, you may notice the water is slow to drain and has a “clug, clug, clug” emitting from it as the water slowly drains. This noise is typically the sign of a blockage in the drain. Grease, hair, and other debris could be preventing water from going down the drain smoothly. The clug noise occurs when air comes up between the water and is released from the pipe. A professional plumber should be brought in for drain clearing and cleaning. Using drain cleaners exposes your pipes to chemicals, may not solve all the problems, and they are generally bad for the environment. Along with freeing the clog in the drain, a plumber has the ability to go deep within your plumbing to determine if another area is the source of a clog. Clinks & Clanks When using water, you may notice that pipes in the wall are clinking and clanking. There could be multiple causes of this and a plumber must investigate the problem further. Loose Pipes: When pipes are not properly fastened to to the wall or home structure, they can move and hit each other as water rushes through them. The more they hit against objects, the more likely they can crack or get more damage. A plumber can properly fasten the pipes and keep them from making contact with other pipes. Cold Temperatures: During the winter, temperatures in your walls may cause pipes to clink and clank as they are affected by the cold. In most cases this is normal, but a plumber may need to investigate any potential air leaks in your wall and bathroom. Insulated pipe coverings can prevent the water from freezing and creating additional problems in your home. Bang, Bang, Bang When you first turn on the water, you may hear a loud and repetitious bang against the pipes. This noise can be shocking in some circumstances, but it is usually a part of a normal process called “water hammer.” When the water hasn’t been used in a while, it can shoot out from the hot water heater. The fast rush of water causes the pipes to move and “bang” against other objects. One of the easiest ways to prevent the noise and protect your pipes is with a water hammer arrestor. A plumber can install the small part that prevents the water from slamming into the pipes. It will also help make water use very quiet in your home. Whistling If you hear a whistling from your toilet, don’t worry, an animal isn’t swimming inside and trying to communicate. A whistling sound from the toilet is typically an indication of a fill valve problem. When the fill valve is...

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Getting To The Root Of Your Plumbing Problems: When Tree Roots Set Up Residence In Your Sewer Pipes

Posted by on Nov 13, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Getting To The Root Of Your Plumbing Problems: When Tree Roots Set Up Residence In Your Sewer Pipes

If you have slow or sluggish pipes, you probably assume that the problem lies in your household drains. After all, nearly everyone knows that grease and food particles can stick to the inside of your drains and create clogs. But that is not the only reason for slow and sluggish drains. Sometimes the problem runs much deeper. The roots of nearby trees can work their way into your sewer pipes and block the flow of water as it leaves your home. How do the roots get into the pipes? Tree roots grow deep in the earth and can spread to a wide area. Because the main purpose for tree roots is to seek out water and nutrients, they are well-adapted to finding sources of water. The nutrient-rich water in your sewer pipes is a virtual feast for roots. The tiny root hairs will work their way into fissures or loose joints in the pipe to seek out the water inside. How do a few hair roots cause a problem in the pipes? There are two major ways tree roots cause a problem in your sewer pipes. Clogs: Once inside, the roots begin to grow and expand rapidly as they absorb water and nutrients from your waste water. They often form a mass of fine hair-like roots that trap fat, grease and food particles as they pass through the root mass. This can create a clog in the pipe. Burst Pipes: Over time the roots get larger and reach further. According to a report by KOIN 6 in 2014, tree roots can grow at a rate of 1 inch a day when the tree is thirsty and is actively seeking water. When the roots get too large for the pipe, they will exert pressure on the sides of the pipe and eventually burst the pipe. How do you get rid of tree roots in your sewer pipes? There are several techniques for removing tree roots from drain pipes. The technique used depends on the size of the roots and the location of the problem. Root Killer: Fine hair roots that have not had time to expand and grow into a massive root system can often be treated with chemical root killer. This is typically flushed down the toilet where it goes to work killing the roots. Cutters: Your plumber can often cut larger roots out of your pipes by inserting a special motorized cutter into the pipes and trimming away the roots. Manually: Large roots may need to be manually removed by pulling them out of the pipe. How can you prevent problems with roots in the sewer pipes? There are several things you can do to reduce the risk of tree roots in your pipes. Do not plant trees over the sewer line. Consider moving shrubs, bushes and trees that have been planted too close to your sewer line. Remember trees often have a root system as large as the canopy of the tree. Use a chemical root killer in your sewer pipes regularly. This will kill any new roots on contact, keeping the pipe free of roots. Have your pipes inspected and cleaned regularly. Your plumber can run a camera down the plumbing line to determine if any roots have breached the pipe and take care of them...

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How To Protect Your Kitchen Sink Plumbing And Garbage Disposal

Posted by on Aug 28, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Protect Your Kitchen Sink Plumbing And Garbage Disposal

Your kitchen sink gets a great deal of use each day as you prepare and clean up after your meals. Because your kitchen sink’s plumbing and garbage disposal can get used and abused, it is important to take care of them. Here are four tips to help protect them and keep them working well. #1 Use Your Disposal for Disposal-Friendly Items If you have a garbage disposal in your kitchen sink, it can be easy to get into the mindset that you can dump all leftover food down the disposal to get rid of it. The disposal is not meant to clean out your fridge of unwanted or moldy leftovers.  There are some guidelines you should follow when you use your kitchen sink disposal. A good rule of thumb to use is if a baby can eat it, you can put it down your disposal. Included in appropriate items you can put down the disposal are water and other liquids, soft foods, ice, and chopped foods. Scrape the leftover food from your dirty plates and dispose of it and any other food items into your trash can. #2 Put Grease and Oils in the Trash You may already know you should not pour down your kitchen sink or disposal grease and fat leftover from cooking meat. When this hot oil mixes with water, it can solidify and stick to the insides of your kitchen plumbing. Then, as food particles are washed down the drain and into the pipes, they will stick onto the congealed grease. Over time, this build-up turns into a clog in your pipe. The nearly 3,000 year old practice of swishing coconut oil or sesame oil in your mouth has become popular recently as a natural remedy to help against gingivitis, plaque, and bad breath. However, it is not a good idea to spit the used oil down your sink drain when you are finished as you do with mouthwash. The oil is warm when you spit it out and once it flows down into your kitchen sink’s plumbing, it will cool and stick on the inside and attract food particles. Instead, spit any used oil into the trash when you are finished swishing it inside your mouth. #3 Compost Most of Your Kitchen Garbage When you are preparing a meal, do not put fruit or vegetable peelings, fruit pits, or stringy membranes from fruits or vegetables down the disposal. Instead, collect these organic scraps in an empty bucket or bowl in your kitchen. Also, add any egg shells, coffee grounds, and nut shells to your compost bucket. Be sure to crush egg shells into small pieces before composting them, and remove any produce stickers from your produce clippings and toss them in the trash. Then, you can use the scraps as an organic compost in your backyard garden. If you don’t have a backyard garden, give them to a neighbor or friend who does.  By composting much of your organic kitchen refuse, you will save your sink plumbing and disposal, and help add beneficial plant nutrients to your or a friend or neighbor’s garden. #4 Use a Sink Strainer Guard As an added protection to your kitchen sink garbage disposal, consider purchasing a sink strainer guard to place over the opening of your disposal. This sink strainer guard will collect any non-disposable items that may fall into...

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Why Frequently Unoccupied Homes Need Hot Water Heater Flushes & How You Can Perform One

Posted by on Aug 4, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why Frequently Unoccupied Homes Need Hot Water Heater Flushes & How You Can Perform One

If you own a second home that is frequently unoccupied, then you probably know all too well how things can go wrong when you’re away. Performing preventative maintenance can help keep things running smoothly, but one specific maintenance task you may not have considered is the need to flush the hot water heaters on a regular basis. Below is more information on why hot water heaters need regular flushing, particularly in homes that aren’t occupied, as well as how you can easily flush hot water heaters using a few common tools and materials: Why hot water heaters need to be flushed Hot water heaters accumulate foreign debris that enters via the incoming water supply or precipitates during the heating process. These sediments can build to a level where they insulate the water from the heat source. This increases energy costs as the hot water heater is forced to adjust its heat output in order to adequately warm the water. In addition, collecting sediment may also cause blockages within the hot water heater and pipes, and these blockages can reduce the life of the heater and create dangerous overheating within the device. The problem of accumulating sediment becomes particularly acute when property sits vacant for long periods of time without use of the hot water. Even a hot water heater that is turned off can still accumulate sediment if the cold water supply is still active. Flushing hot water heaters is a simple, straightforward solution to the problem of accumulating sediment. It removes sediments and any other debris that might accumulate in the hot water heater and both prolongs the life of the tank and cuts energy costs. Here is how you can safely flush hot water heaters: Tools and materials needed Garden hose with ¾-inch female hose connector Eye protection Gloves Flat-bladed screwdriver Five-gallon bucket Step-by-step procedure 1. Work safely—Hot water heaters are pressurized vessels that can kill or injure careless persons. That’s why you must disconnect the energy supply to the heater before performing any work, including flushing the tank, and be sure that no one can accidentally turn it back on during maintenance. Always turn off gas supply valves and switch off the appropriate breaker circuit at the main panel. In addition, you should protect your body when working on a hot water heater; sudden water releases can severely scald you. Wear eye protection as well as leather work gloves when performing work on a hot water heater. Allow the hot water inside the tank to cool after turning off the gas or electrical power before conducting maintenance. 2. Connect the garden hose to the water heater drain—Locate the drain on the hot water heater, which will probably be located at the lower end of the tank. Screw a ¾-inch garden hose to the drain outlet and route the other end of the hose to an outdoor location that is lower than the bottom of the water heater. If you aren’t able to route the hose outside, direct the discharge into a bathtub, shower or large bucket. Just keep in mind the need to periodically pause the flushing process so you can empty the bucket. 3. Open the drain valve—After routing the other end of the hose to a safe location and permitting the water inside the...

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Drains Perpetually Clogged? Here’s What It Could Mean And What You Can Do To Fight Future Clogs

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Drains Perpetually Clogged? Here’s What It Could Mean And What You Can Do To Fight Future Clogs

Old homes are prone to clogs and other issues if they still have their original plumbing. While this can be a nuisance, many homeowners would rather just deal with the occasional clog than pay for plumbing repairs. If your drains have a tendency to misbehave, it might be good to call a company like Doctor Fix-It or learn how to tell between a clog that indicates a bigger problem and a harmless one, and what you can do to fight clogs more easily. Determine The Source Of The Clogs In some cases drains that clog often can be a sign of a deeper problem that will only worse if ignored, eventually putting your plumbing out of commission. Even if you don’t mind the additional maintenance, it’s a good idea to find out what exactly is causing the clogs. Drain clogs that are clearly caused by hair, grease, or food that have been washed into the pipes are obviously benign, but other types of clogs aren’t. For example, if a clog often forms deep inside a pipe, this could indicate a serious problem with your line, such as tree roots penetrating the plumbing and catching matter as it floats through. This problem needs to be addressed right away, since allowing the roots to keep growing could totally destroy the affected pipes. Another type of clog that indicates a deeper problem is one where water backs up through your pipes from other places in the house or from the sewer line. This can be unsanitary and often means you need serious plumbing repairs done to prevent flooding your home with waste water. Usually it’s a problem with your main line. If your clogs are an innocent nuisance and not a symptom of something worse, here are a couple of things you can do to make life easier without getting repairs done. Invest In A Drum Auger A drum auger is essentially a longer, more powerful drain snake. If snaking your drains when they clog up is too much physical labor for you, a drum auger can make the process much easier. Drum augers also have more strength against clogs, meaning even stubborn grease or hair clogs can be broken up and fished out of the pipe. You’ll need a power drill to operate an auger. As you hold down the trigger, the wire is pushed through the pipes in a spiraling motion, which allows it to more thoroughly clean them. Due to the power of the auger, however, you should never use it directly on a fixture like a sink or toilet. Instead, remove the fixture and run the line down into the pipe itself. Give Your Pipes A Weekly Cleanse If your goal is prevent clogs before they even form, you can give your pipes some help by forming a weekly routine that will break down matter stuck in your drains. A popular solution is to pour a pot of boiling water down each drain to liquefy grease and other gunk and push it further down the line. For good measure, you can chase the boiling water with a cup or two of white vinegar, which will not only eat away stubborn matter in the pipes, but will also disinfect the drain and get rid of any unpleasant odors. For shower...

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