Here’s the thing about summer plumbing problems: Most people don’t think they occur. As if all of your plumbing issues conspire to burst, leak and break only in the winter. It’s just not true!
Think about it, all the kids are home and constantly flushing the toilet or running through the sprinkler while you are trying to relax by the pool or lake. Truth is, there is more unattended time for plumbing issues to pop up during the dog days of summer.
Here are a few of the major culprits that Greg and Brandon Sheck from G&C Plumbing and Heating run into all the time.
Keep An Eye On
Sprinklers & Outdoor Faucets
Ahh, the mighty in ground sprinkler system. Just remember, these lush green lawn Sherpas sit dormant for months resulting in serious wear-and-tear. “You might not notice a sprinkler leak until you receive that high water bill and you’re like – but we weren’t even home last month. To prevent leaks, make sure you thoroughly clean your system each summer,” said Brandon Sheck. Or, just call Greg and Brandon to check the system for you.
Sometimes leaks in your home aren’t discovered until you use an outdoor faucet for the first time. You might want to wash the car or let the kids play in the hose during a hot August day and bam, there you find water pooling under your spigot. “Give all faucets a once over a few times during the summer – sometimes kids just forget to turn them all the way off,” said Brandon. If you’re on vacation reading this and worried you might be establishing the next great lake in your back yard, again, call G&C and the guys can go check it out for you.
The kids are out of school and it seems the entire neighborhood spends the summer hydrating at your house – sound familiar? When the toilet is constantly flushing (you hope not toys) your fixtures get more use and can succumb to maintenance issues.
“Now is the time to sit everyone down and give a little talk on limiting toilet paper use and explaining that certain things cannot be flushed,” said Grand Master Plumber and father of two Greg Sheck.
Here is a typical summer day: Each kid has 3 bowls of cereal that they pour down the sink, followed by pizzas for lunch and cook outs at night (All also dumped down the drain) Your garbage disposal is working like it’s Christmas Day for two months straight.
“The best way you can avoid clogs and break downs is to limit the use of your disposal and never push down items such as hard fruits, fibrous vegetables, corn cobs or starchy foods that can soak up water in drains and clog pipes,” said Greg who also recommends a good clean out with Bio Clean. This all natural product can help all drains weather the summer months.
Sheck BBQ Tip: During cookouts, have guest avoid your garbage disposal altogether. Set out a designated garbage for fixings and uneaten food that is clearly marked. You can even place a bucket in the sink to collect scraps.
“No one ever believes this when we tell them, but tree roots can grow into sewer lines during the spring and summer,” said Brandon who laughed out loud the first time his dad showed him an example of this growing out of a toilet.
If you notice a slow drain, this could be a sign that invasive tree roots might have invited themselves in. Roots like sewer pipes because they’re a great water and nutrient source. Also look for strange areas on your lawn (typically running along your sewer line) where the grass is particularly lush and green. If a tree root has grown into your sewer line and the contents of said line are now leaking out and feeding your lawn this is not a good thing even if the lawn looks it’s best ever.
Roots in the sewer pipe can result in a headache no one wants to have during summer vacation. Call the guys at G&C Plumbing and Heating before you head out on your final camping trip of the summer to make sure you don’t come home to any unwanted surprises.
Enjoy summer. Leave plumbing to the pros!