As we often say here on the blog, whenever seasons change, so should the manner in which you treat your plumbing. Changes in temperature or precipitation can be quite the challenge for your plumbing system. Considering the first official day of summer is June 20th, we’re going to walk you through what you should be doing to ensure your plumbing is ready to go for the hot Kansas City summers!
Before getting into the “Summer Plumbing Checklist,” we would like to welcome any new visitors to our blog! Here at Stine-Nichols Plumbing, we love having the opportunity to educate our fellow Kansas City residents on everything they need to know about plumbing. Whether that be advice on extending the lifespan of your hot water heater or tips on preventing clogged drains, there’s certainly a few things to keep in mind.
With that said, here’s some of our favorite tips to help your plumbing survive the warmer weather!
Inspect Your Sump Pump
We actually covered sump pumps in greater detail a couple of weeks ago, but it can’t be understated the importance of a functioning sump pump during the summer. Particularly here in Kansas City, where we’re known to have our fair share of heavy rainfall, take the time to make sure your sump pump is functioning correctly. Luckily, it won’t take more than 15-30 minutes to do so.
Run a quick test by pouring a five-gallon bucket of water into the sump pump pit. When it reaches a particular point, the pump should turn on and disperse the water away from the house through a discharge pipe. If this doesn’t happen, add this to your “To-Do” list for the next time a plumber comes out! Furthermore, if you don’t already have a sump pump battery-backup installed, it wouldn’t hurt to inquire about one of those as well! You’ll be glad you did if the power were to go out during a storm!
Have a Pool?
An easy way to burn through a lot of water in a hurry is with a pool issue! Chances are if you have a pool, you may have already opened up your pool for the summer season. However, be sure to take a minute to check the pool for any damages, cracks or leaks. Additionally, take a look at the pipes supplying the pool, as well as the pump, in case there is any noticeable damage. As mentioned above, any issues on this point can quickly turn into a costly expense thanks to all of the wasted water!
Next up, we have your sprinkler system! Like the sump pump, test your sprinkler system and make sure everything is working correctly. If it doesn’t seem to be as powerful as normal or has erratic water flow, you could be dealing with a leak at some place within your system.
Be on the Watch for Leaks
Any time you have a leak, you know you also have a plumbing problem! While you won’t be able to physically get eyes on all of the pipes, you can certainly check out those that are exposed. Especially in the areas you’re not around as much (maybe an unfinished part of the basement), be sure to look around for puddles of water or damp areas. These are tell-tale signs of a plumbing problem!
More so with our service technicians, one of the more common calls we receive each and every year revolves around drain cleaning. More often than not, it’s a quick and easy repair, but it can definitely be a headache for homeowners having to take off work and meet a plumber at their home. In any case, it’s always better the quicker you can get it taken care of. If you’ve had a slow sink or shower drain for quite some time, now is the perfect time to get it back in working order. It doesn’t take long for those smaller clogs that don’t seem like a huge issue to end up being a major nightmare!
Secondly, on the topic of drain cleaning, it never hurts to be proactive in dealing with plumbing issues! Even if something isn’t a major issue at the moment, getting your drains cleaned is a wise routine practice. It can ensure nothing is ever getting trapped and becoming capable of leading to a future clog.
Time to Upgrade?
If you notice your water bill keeps ticking a little bit higher, now might be a great time to make some much-needed upgrades! Plus, as an added bonus, you’ll be surprised by how much of a difference a simple fixture replacement can have on the overall look and feel of a bathroom or kitchen. Take some time this week to inspect each of your fixtures throughout the house. The faucets, showerheads, toilets and so on. Look for any parts that might be loose or any noticeable issues. If it’s an easy fix, go ahead and do so. However, if you have a fixture that’s repeatedly causing you issues, it might be time to consider a replacement!
Clean the Showerheads
When was the last time you properly cleaned your showerheads? If it’s been more than a few months, let’s get those knocked out this week! Mineral deposits tend to build up on the showerheads, thus creating a partial clog and resulting in lower water pressure. Fixing this is as simple as soaking it in white vinegar for several hours and then poking out any loose particles with a toothpick.
Pre-Vacation Plumbing Check!
Fingers crossed that we can safely travel soon! Nonetheless, we typically associate warm summers with traveling on vacation. Whether or not we can do that this year remains to be seen! However, for those that will be heading out of town and leaving their home for a week or two, here’s a few things to keep in mind:
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- Make Sure Garbage Disposal is Clear – The last thing you want to be greeted with upon arriving home is a funky-smelling home! Before heading out, turn the disposal on and let it run to clear out any small particles that might be hanging around. Do the same for your drains as well!
- Double Check Appliances – We’ve mentioned it earlier in this blog, but it can never hurt to carefully inspect pieces to your plumbing system that are readily visible. Be sure to check out the water heater, washing machine, dishwasher and refrigerator for anything that may seem off!
Schedule a Complete Plumbing Inspection!
Having read through all of this, you’re likely starting to realize just how intertwined your plumbing system is with your day-to-day life! In order to avoid a plumbing emergency or costly repair bills, it’s important to make sure everything is in working order. For many of our long-time customers here in the Kansas City area, an easy way to provide peace of mind is through a complete plumbing inspection. One of our trained technicians can efficiently navigate the many aspects of your plumbing system and determine whether or not anything needs repaired. If there is something off, chances are it’s a quick fix and they’ll get it knocked out right then.
Call Stine-Nichols Plumbing!
Have a plumbing problem on your hands right now? Give your friends at Stine-Nichols Plumbing a call at (816) 348-3481 or fill out our FREE QUOTE form. Our motto here is to provide reliable and long-lasting plumbing services WITHOUT breaking the bank! We understand plumbing problems aren’t the funnest of times for homeowners and it’s our mission to make the entire repair process as stress-free as possible. We currently serve the entire Kansas City area and many of the surrounding cities, including Liberty, Parkville, Gladstone and so on!