Plumbing Protection Tips For New Homeowners

Posted on: 25 January 2018

As a new homeowner, taking on the responsibility for maintaining your home's plumbing is important. You need to know how to avoid pipe damage in your home, because problems in your home's plumbing can cause a domino effect and may ultimately lead to damage to the water main and other plumbing infrastructure. Here are a few things that you should know to help you avoid plumbing problems in your home and the pipes that lead up to it.

Locate Your Stopcock

One of the very first things you should do when you move into a house is to locate the stopcock on the main plumbing line, as well as those on any other lines in the house. This is essential, because the stopcock allows you to close the valve, stopping the flow of water. The main stopcock will shut off all of the water coming into the house, while the ones in the other areas of the home will control just the fixture to which they are attached.

Protect Your Pipes

All of your exterior pipes should be well insulated, as should pipes in any unheated or poorly insulated parts of your home. If you have a cold water tank, insulate that with a jacket as well. This ensures that the water in the lines does not freeze when the temperature drops. It's important to avoid this because if the water in a pipe freezes, it will expand. That can crack the pipe and lead to extensive damage in your house or around your property.

Another key part of protecting your pipes from freezing involves your home heating system. Make sure to have it maintained on a regular basis, and always keep the heat on, even if it's set low. This ensures that your home's plumbing stays above freezing. In areas of your home that are particularly cold, consider investing in a space heater or heat tape for the pipes.

Be Careful What You Flush

Your home's plumbing system isn't well equipped for processing greasy, thick, or non-biodegradable items. Don't put grease or food down your drains, and ensure that nobody flushes anything other than toilet paper and human waste down the toilets. Otherwise, you risk a clog that can shift into the main sewer lines. This can cause severe drain backups, and the pressure buildup can even cause cracked pipes.

For more tips to avoid plumbing damage, and to keep you from expenses like water main repair, talk with a local plumbing contractor in your area. He or she will help you with recommendations for the best practices to protect your pipes.