Spring is upon us! The verdant freshness tempts us to open our windows and doors, to no longer sequester ourselves in our winter dens; an inexplicable desire to bring that freshness indoors. Thus, our long-standing and ritualistic habit of “spring cleaning” begins.
As you begin the yearly frenzy of dusting, mopping, and washing of all things, we encourage you to remember your plumbing. After a long winter’s use, it could use a little TLC and “freshening up” as much as the rest of your home. Making this type of annual maintenance a habit will help your plumbing fixtures and system to perform better and last longer.
To help you out, we’ve created a handy checklist to help you give your plumbing a thorough spring cleaning this year: get a printable PDF version.
- Clear your gutters, downspouts, and vent pipes on the roof.
- Inspect your pipes (or have your plumber inspect them) for leaks, damage, or anything unusual.
- Check your hose bibbs for leaks or damage and replace them if needed. If dripping continues after the spout is replaced, you may have had a frozen pipe that cracked and needs repairing.
- Install backwater valves on all floor drains to prevent sewer backups.
- Snake any slow floor drains to remove clogs, and pour a gallon of water into infrequently used floor drains. This fills the trap and will prevent odors and sewer gases from coming in the house.
- Use a bacterial drain cleaner to clear debris and build-up from all the drains in your home. If you have a “frequent clogger”, take the time now to snake it and get rid of the problem.
- Clean the traps beneath your kitchen, bathroom, and laundry sinks.
- Put mesh strainers over all of your drains to help prevent hair and other clogging debris from going down the drain.
- Test your sump pump. Pour water into the basin and trip the lever to ensure it is still working properly and the on/off mechanism isn’t corroded.
- Do an all-around maintenance check on your water heater.
- Clean mineral build-up from your shower heads and faucets. Clean out and replace faucet aerators if needed.
- Check the water supply lines to your washing machine, faucets, toilets, and other water-using appliances or fixtures. If you see bulges, tears, or leaks, replace the lines.
- Clean out your washing machine lint trap.
- Give your garbage disposer a thorough cleaning and repair it if needed.
- Do a thorough leak check in and around your home, remembering to do a water meter reading to make sure you’ve gotten everything.
I had no idea that you should snake slow drains. Another thing you should do is clean out your sewer every year or so. Thanks for the advice about spring cleaning your plumbing.
Plumbing is a must in all household. Thanks for sharing this. I learned a lot.
I own a pluming company in San Diego and I can tell you that all this here is definitely true. What most homeowners fail to take into consideration is that plumbing is just like a car, or your body in that it requires maintenance, yearly. If you fail to maintain the plumbing, it will go bad on you. And unfortunately when it goes bad on you, it can cause a lot of damage. Spring is definitely a good time to do your annual check. I make similar recommendations at my website. http://www.colepepperplumbing.com
Thank you for suggesting that in the spring we have our pipes inspected. My husband has been noticing a few issues with our sanitary piping system lately. I want to get these fixed before they turn into major issues. Hopefully, we can find a high-quality plumber in the area to help get our home back into great shape. http://icemechanical.com/services.html
Thanks for pointing out that having an annual maintenance in your plumbing system will make it last longer without having major issues. With that in mind, I will make sure to contact a plumber next year in the springtime. This is the first time that I am living on my own. I moved into this apartment a few weeks ago because I needed to be closer to work. Since I am a newbie, this will help me to keep my house in great condition.