Even though the plumbing system in your home may look simple, it is quite complex. Therefore, it is important to know which repairs make good do-it-yourself projects and which are better placed in the hands of a professional plumber in Orange County. Below are some quick fixes you can undertake to prevent minor problems from becoming major ones, and tips about when it is best to contact a plumber.
It is relatively easy to remove and replace a showerhead that is no longer functioning properly. All you need to do is simply unscrew your current showerhead and carefully replace it with the new one. A pair of tongue-and-groove pliers may be necessary if the old showerhead is difficult to unscrew. If it is excessively hard to remove, you should contact a professional.
Caulking a Sink or Bathtub
If the seals in your kitchen or bathroom are deteriorating or have become cracked, this could lead to water damage, leaks, or other plumbing issues. The easiest way to resolve this problem is to re-caulk the trouble areas. Begin by removing the caulk in the sink or bathtub with a razor blade or putty knife. Make sure you do this job thoroughly, as using new caulk over old does not yield a successful outcome. Once the old caulk is removed, create a clean work surface by vacuuming up any debris.
Next, apply an unbroken line of caulk with a caulk gun. Always smooth your lines as you go so they stay neat and professional looking. Keep in mind that caulk dries very rapidly, so try to work as quickly as you can without getting sloppy. Remember that you can always start over if you find it necessary. Call a plumber if you discover any plumbing issues or leaks after re-caulking. Leaking pipes should only be addressed by a professional.
Fix a Running Toilet
A running toilet is an irritating plumbing issue, and, over time, it leads to significant amounts of wasted water. Virtually everyone knows about jiggling the handle, but this is usually only a temporary fix. A toilet that does not stop running typically has a broken floater valve or flapper valve, both of which can be replaced without much difficulty. First, turn off the water to the toilet, and replace the broken part by following the instructions on the package. You can purchase the new part at most hardware stores. If you have the opposite problem, and flushing is the issue, the toilet may be blocked or clogged. Try simple fixes like a snake or plunger, but if they have no effect, call a plumber to determine the underlying source of the problem.
Repair a Leaking Faucet
A leak at the faucet’s base or a drip from its spout are the two most common faucet problems. These repairs can be simple or challenging, which largely depends on the kind of faucet on which you are working. For instance, rotary-ball faucets are in general use, and your local home-improvement store will probably have the parts you need. However, ceramic-disk faucets and cartridge-style faucets are not as common, so it can be difficult to locate parts for these types.
Always turn off the water supply before replacing parts to fix a leak. The shut-off is usually located in the basement or near the sink. If you can’t find it, or if you are not comfortable completing this task, contact a plumbing expert for help.
Installing a New Faucet in Your Bathroom
Regardless of whether you’re simply looking for a new faucet for aesthetic reasons or your bathroom faucet is showing signs of serious problems, you can probably take on this job yourself. Simply turn off the sink’s water supply and take out the old faucet. Remember to take a picture of the connection points, or make note of them in your mind so that you can purchase a new faucet that is similar. Once you’ve bought it, simply follow the instructions on the package to successfully complete the job.
Fortunately, you do not have to call a plumber for every clog you encounter, as plunging or snaking the drain may be all that is required. However, it’s important to understand that drain cleaning solvents can damage your pipes; refrain from using them. If plunging or snaking does not work, make sure you contact a professional plumber to diagnose the problem and come up with the best solution. You should also take a few simple precautions to avoid future clogs. For example, use a hair catcher in the shower, and avoid putting grease or fat down your kitchen sink. In addition, make sure you know what your garbage disposal is capable of handling and which items you should never put down the drain.
Dealing with Water Pressure Issues
If you notice decreased water pressure in your shower, it is likely the result of hard-water mineral buildup. An easy way to see if this is the case is to check the shower head for lime deposits. If a visible buildup is discovered, remove the showerhead and spray plate. This may require the use of a screwdriver. Once those parts are taken off, clean them with a descaling solution. Always follow the manufacturer’s directions on any product you use for this task. Once they are cleaned off, replace them and see if this solves the problem. If you have frequent water pressure issues, however, contact a plumber in Orange County for an evaluation.
Washing Machine Hose Replacement
You should inspect and replace your washing machine hose approximately every five years to make sure that massive leaks are prevented. Begin by shutting off the water supply to the washer as well as unplugging it from its electrical source. After this, simply take off the old hose, and connect the new one to the valves and washer. Turn the water supply and the power back on to inspect your work and ensure that there are no leaks or drips.
Finally, before you take on any repairs as do-it-yourself projects, make sure you are familiar with your home’s plumbing system. If you are unsure of anything, err on the side of caution and contact one of our plumbers in Orange County who can diagnose the problem and offer the best possible solution.