Common Plumbing Mistakes to Avoid

July 7, 2017

A clogged drain, low water pressure or leaky pipe can wreak havoc with a family’s schedule. They get in the way of showers, grooming, food prep, dish washing and laundry. As a long-time plumbing company in the Bay Area, we’ve seen just about every plumbing issue out there.

 

If you want to keep your pipes and fixtures in good shape, here are seven common plumbing mistakes to avoid:

 

1. Low Water Pressure

Do you have too many plumbing appliances, fittings and fixtures in your home? This can lead directly to low water pressure. This is especially troublesome if you live in a neighborhood where low pressure is the norm at certain times of the day. The more fixtures you have in your home, the more you will be affected by low water pressure.

 

2. Crowded Plumbing Space

Your pipes need room. The clean-outs in your plumbing system let you or the plumber clear out blocked pipes. But if there isn’t enough free space around the pipe, you miss out on the most direct and quickest way to clear out a clogged pipe. When adding cupboards or other modifications, always leave ample open space all around the pipe system.

 

3. Fixtures Too Close

When adding a bathroom, you may be stuck with a very small area. Match the plumbing fixtures to the space you have. Don’t put the tub or shower too close to the toilet. Leave space so a person can get to the sink. If fixtures are too close together, the people using the bathroom will constantly be uncomfortable.

 

The same is true when remodeling the kitchen. Leave space over and around the dishwasher. Make sure there is enough room to work at the sink.

 

4. It’s a Drain, Not a Garbage Pail

Sinks are made for liquids. Your kitchen sink isn’t made for grease. Unless it has a garbage disposal in it, you shouldn’t dump produce debris down the drain. Hair can easily clog a tub or bathroom sink drain.

 

Here is a short list of things to never put down a drain in your home:

- Coffee grounds

- Oils, fats, grease

- Eggshells

- Cat litter, even if it says flush-able

- Paper towels and flush-able wipes

- Cotton balls

- Car fluids like anti-freeze

- Hair

- Fruit and vegetable peelings and pits

 

5. The Unexpected in the Toilet

Little kids love to put wads of toilet paper into the toilet, to say nothing of toys and clothes. These can easily clog the toilet in a way that makes the standard plunger useless.

Adults can also be the cause of strange things entering the plumbing system by way of the toilet. This usually happens because they aren’t paying attention. Socks and underwear can fall into the toilet and cause a clog.

 

Containers with hair and facial products can drop in without people noticing. Be careful not to put packages close to the toilet. Leave the back of the toilet fixture free of clutter.

 

6. Don’t Break the Faucet

Is your faucet dripping? Turning it off with force won’t get rid of the drip, but it could easily break the faucet. When you use too much pressure, the handle can become loose or break off. A leak is fixed by applying skill and knowledge based on the cause, not brute force.

 

7. Putting It All Back Together

If you attempt to fix a simple leak or other problem yourself, be sure to take several pictures of the fixture before you start. Shoot from every angle. As you remove pieces, take more pictures. Photos are gold when you get confused about what goes where when you try to put the many pieces back together.


Even when you treat your plumbing with TLC, sometimes you need to call a plumber. The team at Clear Drain Plumbing handles all types of plumbing jobs, from installation to repair and replacement. Contact us for emergencies, upgrades and maintenance!

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