Fix It And Forget It! Common Plumbing And Septic Issues

As a homeowner, you are most likely aware of the various tasks necessary to keep your home clean and valuable. From mowing the lawn and shampooing your carpet to replacing a worn roofing shingle, it is easy to see the stress of home maintenance. Unfortunately, you may not be placing enough time and effort into your home's plumbing. Considering your plumbing and septic system are imperative parts of your home's value and family's needs, ensuring toilets and drains are clean and in good condition is essential. Using this guide, you can easily repair common plumbing and septic issues in your home.

Leaky Faucet Handle

Most homeowners will face a leaky faucet at one point due to the constant use of their kitchen and bathroom sinks and shower or tub faucets. While common, a leaky faucet handle can be an overwhelming nuisance. Not only will the dripping noise become unpleasant over time, but the small leaks can also add up, resulting in a high water bill. Thankfully, you can quickly fix a leaky faucet handle using the following steps:

  1. Locate the water shut-off valve to stop the water supply to your leaky faucet.
  2. Close the sink drain using its stopper. Also, place a towel over the drain and sink. This prevents small parts from falling into the drain.
  3. Unscrew the faucet handle using a crescent wrench. Remove the packing nut and stem to locate the O-ring and washer.
  4. Match up the O-ring size to ensure proper replacement. Coat the new O-ring in plumber's grease before reinstalling. Replace the old washer, as well.
  5. Reassemble the faucet handle. Be sure to tighten the packing nut.
  6. Turn on the water supply after reassembly.

Clogged Toilets

A clogged toilet is another common issue you will face when you move into a home. Plungers are smart tools to have on hand since clogs are so common. However, if you are having frequent clogs in your toilet, there may be a deeper issue in your septic system. Without dealing with the underlying problem, you may suffer with a complete toilet failure involving water damage and a costly replacement. In many cases, this can cost an estimated $5,584 after a deductible to your homeowner's insurance. 

If you are dealing with frequent clogs, check the interior components of your toilet for problems. Remove the tank cover first and flush. Watch the valve cover and ensure it opens and closes without difficulty. If the cover does not completely cover the drain opening, waste will not move freely out of your toilet after flushing. This will cause your toilet to clog periodically. Replace the valve ensemble to ensure a proper closure.

While certain wipes are deemed suitable for flushing, the material may not break down effectively after flushing. Over time, the foreign material will build up in your septic system, resulting in frequent clogs. Avoid flushing these wipes to prevent more clogs and to protect your underlying septic system.

Foul Odors

Bathing, cooking, and cleaning can all lead to smelly drains in your kitchen, bathroom, and utility room sinks and drains. Foul odors in your drains are difficult to avoid, but they are rather easy to remove.

When you first notice these unappealing odors, boil a pot of water. Pour the boiling water directly into your drain. The hot water will remove dirt, soap scum, food, or any leftover residue from within your drain without the use of toxic chemicals.

If the odor is still present, consider using a few tablespoons of baking soda. Sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda, not only deodorizes smelly odors, but also dissolves away stubborn residue.

After rinsing the drain with the pot of boiling water, sprinkle baking soda directly into the drain. Allow to sit for a few minutes before running your faucet to rinse.

Leaky faucets, clogged toilets, and smelly drains are common plumbing issues you face in your home. However, they do not have to become expensive, overwhelming issues. Using this guide, you can easily repair these common problems. For more info on repairing plumbing problems, contact your local plumber.