Five Things That Can Damage Your Plumbing

Construction & Contractors Blog

A lot of damage to your plumbing can be avoided simply by knowing the types of things that are most likely to lead to damage. The following are five of the greatest risks to plumbing systems in most homes.

1. Hard Water

Hard water is water that contains a high level of soluble minerals, like lime, calcium, and iron. The minerals can precipitate out of the water inside the pipes, leaving behind a crusty residue called limescale that will build up over time. Eventually, this scale can clog pipes and taps, causing blockages in the plumbing system. Sometimes the backup can become severe enough that leaks will occur in the plumbing and the pipes will need to be replaced. You can prevent hard water issues by installing a whole-house softener system.

2. Tree Root Incursion

Tree roots will seek out the moisture and nutrients that run through your main sewer line. Small roots find their way into the pipe via the joints in the piping, then the roots grow until they block the flow. In some cases, the roots squeeze the pipes from outside and cause the piping to collapse. Regular augering to remove roots combined with chemical root growth retardants can fix the issue. You may also need to remove trees that are growing too close to the pipe.

3. Oil and Grease

Never put oil or grease down your drains. Although these items may seem like liquids, they will solidify in the pipes. Then, additional debris, such as food particles or hair, will stick to them and create larger clogs. Eventually, the drain will back up and overflow. Oil and grease belong in the trash, not your plumbing.

4. DIY Drain Cleaning

Some DIY drain cleaning methods can do more harm than good. One example is using a drain auger, or "snake," to clear a drain. These devices can punch right through a pipe if not used properly. Another common DIY plumbing fix is to use chemicals to clear the drains. Most drain-clearing chemicals contain caustic materials and acids, which can slowly eat away at pipes from the inside or even damage the sinks you pour the cleaner into.

5. Hazardous Waste

Never use the drain to dispose of certain household liquids. Paint, for example, can solidify in a pipe and block it permanently. Other household chemicals, like paint thinners and pesticides, can contain chemicals that will react in the drain and produce dangerous gases, or they may contain components that can eat through the pipes. If you are on a septic system, even household cleaners may need to stay out of the drains since they can throw off the microbial balance in your septic tank.

Contact a plumbing company if you suspect issues with your plumbing pipes.

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3 June 2020

All About Building a Home

Welcome to my website. I'm Albert Frost. Besides my dad, one of my biggest role models was my uncle Rick. He was a construction contractor who would let me come on his construction sites and also taught me everything he knew about building homes, including how to install hardwood flooring and add insulation. I always wanted to grow up to build houses like my uncle. I used to help my uncle with a lot of the grunt work needed to make a home a reality. But then I hurt my back playing football. Until I heal completely, I'm going to devote as much of my time as possible to teaching others about various construction topics I'm interested in.