Common DIY Plumbing Mistakes Homeowners Make
July 06, 2023
When faced with a plumbing issue, it's understandable that homeowners may consider handling the problem themselves to save money. However, attempting DIY repairs or installations can lead to costly consequences in the long term.
Inefficient plumbing work can strain various system components, potentially resulting in more extensive repairs down the line. To avoid these pitfalls, it is highly recommended to enlist the services of a licensed professional. Doing so can ensure the job is done correctly from the start, saving you from common plumbing mistakes that can negatively impact your budget and potentially necessitate emergency services, like unexpected flooding, in the middle of the night.
Are you in need of a drain or pipe service?
Look no further than the pros at Red Cap. Our expert plumbers can perform a variety of fixes and repairs. For courteous, knowledgeable plumbers, call (813) 963-3056 (Tampa) or (727) 474-8287 (Pinellas) or schedule an estimate online.
1. Ignoring Pitch
In plumbing, "pitch" refers to the necessary angle or slope for proper pipe installation, ensuring efficient water flow throughout the system. Neglecting to apply the appropriate pitch in different areas of the plumbing can lead to various issues in the future. For instance, it may result in stagnant water that promotes mold growth or cause backups in wastewater that cannot drain effectively. At the very least, improper pitch in your waste management plumbing can lead to slow drainage, increasing the likelihood of frequent clogs. The specific measurement for the required pitch can vary depending on the function of the pipe being installed. Professional plumbers possess the knowledge and expertise to determine the optimal pitch for your specific situation.
2. Using Galvanized Pipes
Some DIY plumbers may opt for galvanized pipes to save money without compromising durability. These pipes, with their wider interior chamber, are believed to enhance water flow within the system. However, galvanized pipes are unsuitable for plumbing due to their susceptibility to rust. The corrosion process significantly shortens their lifespan, often necessitating complete replacement rather than repair. Once corrosion sets in, it is best to replace the entire pipe, as the erosion of the protective zinc layer accelerates further corrosion. Additionally, galvanized pipes are exceptionally heavy and have the potential to release lead into your water supply.
3. Overtightening Connections
It may seem logical to tighten plumbing connections as much as possible to prevent leaks. However, overtightening connections can lead to split or ruptured fittings, ironically causing the leaks you were trying to avoid. Even if the crack does not occur immediately during tightening, increased pressure over time can result in unexpected breaks in the fittings, sometimes weeks later. Different materials require varying torque levels to establish effective connections, and different areas of the plumbing system carry different risks of damage. Professional plumbers possess the expertise to apply the appropriate torque level to prevent leaks without compromising the integrity of the pipes.
4. Using Chemical Drain Cleaners for Clogs
Dealing with stubborn clogs can disrupt your daily routine, but chemical drain cleaners are not the best solution. Despite their long-standing presence in the market, these cleaners do not work as effectively as the specialized tools used by plumbers to tackle clogs. Moreover, chemical drain cleaners are harmful to the environment and can cause damage to your pipes with repeated use, leading to premature pipe replacements and costly repairs. Handling these cleaners also risks your health, as they can irritate the skin, harm the eyes, and release toxic fumes into the air. It is advisable to rely on professional plumbers who possess a range of non-chemical solutions, such as high-pressure water jets and pipe brushes, which are more effective and environmentally friendly in clearing clogs.
5. Forgetting to Install the Trap on Drains
Although seemingly a minor oversight, forgetting to install a drain trap can result in significant problems if left unaddressed. The trap refers to the U-shaped piping located beneath the drain. While it can indeed assist in retrieving items lost down the drain, its primary function is to prevent sewage odors and gases from infiltrating your home while allowing wastewater to flow freely. The unique shape of the trap may raise concerns about potential clogs, but it is relatively easy to remove the trap and clear any obstructions if needed. Installing and maintaining the trap is essential to ensure proper drainage and prevent unpleasant odors from permeating your living space.
Are you ready to hire a licensed expert to handle your next plumbing project and avoid these DIY plumbing mistakes?
Red Cap technicians are knowledgeable and courteous, and our team treats every customer like we would our own family. We offer honest prices, so you never have to worry about surprised fees breaking your budget, and our scheduling process is fast and convenient. We value your time so much we even offer a guarantee we'll be on time for your service call. If we fail to show up during the time window reserved for your house call, we'll give you $100 in credit toward any current or future service with our company.
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