Most homeowners typically don't call a plumber out to the house unless there is an emergency that needs to be taken care of. But what happens if a plumber is not immediately available to assist? Every homeowner should educate themselves on some important aspects of their house's plumbing system so that they can jump into action in the event that something goes wrong. If you are not familiar with how a plumbing system works, here are 3 key things you should learn as soon as possible.
Where's the Shutoff Valve?
Every plumbing system has a shutoff valve that can be used in the case of emergencies. This valve is usually located in your home's basement. In the event that something goes wrong and a major leak (or even flood) springs loose, you need to shut off the water coming in from the main line so that it doesn't do any more damage. Take a look around your basement for a valve that can be turned that is connected to the pipes that you see. This valve usually looks somewhat similar in design to the valve on one of your outdoor spigots that you would attach a garden hose to. Turn it to the right to shut the water off.
Know Where the Main Sewer Line is Located
Another major plumbing line that you should be aware of is the route your home's sewage takes as it leaves the house. Knowing the exact location of this line and the sewer valve can be important if your toilets suddenly start overflowing. It's also important to know where this line is so that you do not plant any trees or other shrubbery with roots anywhere near it. Allowing roots to get near your sewer line is a great way to cause a clog or a leak.
The Location of All Exposed Pipes
When the weather turns cold, one thing to keep an eye on is frozen pipes. Frozen pipes can bring your water supply to a complete halt and can also lead to significant damage if a pipe should burst. In order to help prevent this situation, you should educate yourself on the location of all exposed pipes. There are likely some under your sink in both the bathroom and kitchen, for starters. If you start to notice that water is only trickling out of your bathroom faucets or kitchen faucets, this means the pipes have already started to freeze. Apply a hot towel or blow dryer to these areas can help in the event that you notice your pipes starting to freeze. Contact a plumber for professional assistance if you encounter this problem.
Every homeowner should educate themselves on how to react to specific and common problems that can occur with a plumbing system. Learn where the valves are for your main water line and your sewer valve. Educate yourself on the location of all exposed pipes both under your sink and in your basement so you can spring into action if the pipes start to freeze. If you have problems with faucets, contact a specialist like the Fixture Shop.