Spring is a great time to perform a plumbing check around the house – especially if you live in an area that experienced a harsh winter with heavy snow and extreme temperatures. Here’s a few tips on how to check for problems.
- Clean all drain strainers in the sink and showers to prevent hair, soap and debris from clogging drain lines.
- Check toilets for leaks by adding a few drops of food coloring to the toilet tank. If the color appears in the bowl within 30 minutes, you have a leak.
- Clear mineral deposits from shower heads by soaking them in a plastic bag with vinegar overnight and then gently scrubbing with a toothbrush.
- Check appliances with water hoses such as the washing machine, ice maker and dishwasher for bulges, leaks and hose weakness.
- Clean the washing machine tub and lint trap to maximize performance.
- Pour a gallon of water into infrequently used drains, including floor drains, to fill the trap and prevent odors. Slow floor drains should be snaked so they perform as expected in the event of a flood.
- Inspect your home for leaks by taking a water meter reading before bed and then again the next morning where no water was used overnight. If the reading has changed, you have a leak.
- Make sure yard drains, gutters and downspouts are clear and free of leaks and debris from the winter months.
- Check outdoor faucets and hoses for cracks or leaks.
- Check for unusually damp spots or soft ground in the yard, which may indicate a plumbing problem.