When we think of typical plumbing problems, our minds usually jump to what could happen in winter — cracked pipes, broken radiators, and slow water heaters. However, we don’t often imagine what could happen to our plumbing systems in the summer. With Orange County temperatures already rising, it is important to stay ahead of potential plumbing issues that can occur. Learn how to avoid these common summer plumbing problems!
As the summer months bring Orange County’s usual dry heat, the use of lawn sprinklers surges. After little to no use in the winter, sprinkler systems can develop cracks that cause leaks and end up wasting gallons of water. One way to save water when watering your lawn is to run the sprinkler either in the morning or at night. Running the sprinkler system during the heat of the day will result in evaporated water and likely cause you to pay more to upkeep the lawn. Also be mindful of sprinkler heads when mowing the lawn. Double check that the sprinkler heads are always lowered to avoid causing unnecessary damage.
With kids out of school for the summer, toilets see a lot more day-to-day use. Just everyday use can increase the chances for plumbing issues, so make sure your entire family knows what should and should not be flushed down the toilet. Consider checking with your kids to see if they know how to determine a modest amount of toilet paper to avoid potential clogs. If a clog arises and simply using a plunger doesn’t work, call a plumber to quickly solve the issue for you.
With the kids at home and an increase in summer camps and sports, you can almost guarantee there will be more laundry to wash. If you have not already, make sure to pull your washing machine about four inches away from the wall to prevent the hose from kinking.
You might also consider inspecting the hoses and parts of the machine for any wear and tear. Certain parts of the machine, like the hose, should be replaced every three years or so, and it might be time to check if you should invest in new parts for your busy machine.
Our favorite part of summer can also be the most damaging to a home’s plumbing system. Cookouts are a great summer activity, but when the wrong food gets tossed down the garbage disposal, it can mean a plumbing hassle will soon follow.
Avoid throwing any hard produce down the drain, like watermelon or corn, as these foods can damage the blades and pipes in the disposal. Also refrain from pouring any cooking oils down the sink, as these can create bigger plumbing issues. Encourage your family and cookout guests to throw all food into the garbage can and leave the sink for rinsing any lightly dirtied dishes.
Traditionally, Orange County has little to worry about when it comes to heavy summer showers or rain storms. Although, with recent spring downpours, summer thunderstorms could be anticipated. These heavy showers can create a backup in sewer lines and cause cracks, so keep an eye out for any unexpectedly heavy summer storms.
Another issue that can plague sewer systems during these months is the increased growth of trees and their expanding roots. Aggressively growing roots can cause the pipes to crack and cause damage to the sewer line. Any sewer trouble will become apparent through backed up drains, and if this starts occurring, call a plumbing professional to stop the problem before it gets worse.
For any vacations you take this summer, remember to turn down the heat on your water heater to save energy and money. If you are unsure when your water heater should be replaced, check the last four digits on the product’s serial number to find out the specific month and year it was manufactured. Water heaters should be replaced every 10 years or so, and if your machine is nearing that time frame, it might be a good idea to invest in a new, energy-saving water heater.
Many plumbing problems can be avoided with some extra preparation and mindfulness. Sometimes, however, a plumbing mishap cannot be avoided. Call Platinum Plumbing this summer for any Orange County plumbing needs!