Here  are  some general tips to help prevent unnecessary plumbing problems and costly repair bills:

  • Clean pop-up sink drains and strainers, and pour a pot of boiling water down drains every month to prevent clogging
  • Try to keep fat, greases, and coffee grounds out of drains and dishwashers
  • Never pour paint or chemicals down drains. They may damage pipes or interfere with the proper functioning of septic systems
  • Flush the garbage disposal with one pot of hot water and a half cup of baking soda each month
  • Take note of any pipes that have been patched. These should be replaced, since patches are only meant to be temporary.
  • Periodically check all fixtures: tubs, shower stalls, sinks, basins, and toilets; making sure they’re free of cracks, rust, or other forms of surface damage
  • Make sure caulk and putty seals are in good condition. Fixtures should be firmly attached to the wall or floor, especially hung sinks and toilets.
  • Periodically inspect your water heater for signs of rust or leakage. Don’t mistake condensation for leaks. If your heater is leaking, it must be replaced. Also, check for discharged water from the relief drain valve. If water is present, have a plumber check it immediately.
  • Prevent sediment build-up in gas or oil-fired water heaters by draining a few gallons of water out every six months. Gas-fired heaters should be professionally serviced every other year; and oil-fired, annually.
  • Make sure your sump pump (if you have one) is connected to surface grade or to a storm drain and not a septic tank or sewage system. Those systems are not capable of handling large amounts of water at one time.