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Preventative maintenance can be a lot less expensive than calling a plumber. There is a variety of light maintenance work and checks you can perform regularly to help save yourself money in the long run. Here are some tips & tactics to help prevent costly plumbing problems in your bathroom:

Your Bathroom Sink

  • Suffering from low water pressure? The problem might be the aerator on the tip of your sink faucet. To clean it, gently unscrew it (you might have to use a wrench with some padding) and take it apart. Then use an old toothbrush to gently scrub the parts and reassemble.
  • Install a drain strainer in your sink, even if you have to call a plumber to do it! Hair blocks sinks like nothing else, and that’s something you’ll find a lot of in the bathroom. You save yourself a lot of hassle in the future if you start removing foreign objects from the water flow.
  • Check both your faucet and the drain pipe beneath your sink for signs of leaks on a weekly basis. Leaks are not only great as wasting water, but also at damaging wood and other property!

Toilet

  • Toilets, like every other plumbing fixture, are subject to leaks. Put a few drops of red food coloring into the tank and wait half an hour. Then check the bowl, and look for any hints of red. If you find any, your toilet’s tank is leaking. This usually results from a faulty ball or flapper, which are used to help seal the channel between the two water basins.
  • Remember to never use your toilet as a waste basket! Excess toilet paper is bad enough, but when cotton balls, q-tips, tissues and other hygiene products are added to the mix, you are literally asking for a blockage.
  • Get in the habit of keeping your toilet lid closed when it’s not in use. Random objects and possessions can fall in and clog the pipe. To protect your possessions and your toilet, keep the lid closed.

Tub & Shower

  • Make sure that tub drain stoppers are sealing properly. To check, fill your tube with water and mark the water level. Then wait awhile, and come back to see if and/or how much the water level has fallen. This check is especially important in houses with younger children that take baths often, to conserve water.
  • If your tub doesn’t have one already, outfit it with a strainer to help catch hair and soap chips. This will vastly reduce the likelihood of blockages within the drain pipe.
  • Protect and clean showerheads from mineral deposits. Flush the head with water and let it soak overnight in vinegar to loosen mineral buildup. Then flush it with water again in the morning, and re-attach. This will help keep water pressure up.

Staying on top of things just might save you a call to your local plumber and some cash. If you do discover a more complicated plumbing issue during your regular maintenance, though, don’t hesitate to all in the experts! Contact Catons at (410) 267-6141 and get the problem fixed before it gets any worse.