The Top 10 Things Your Plumber Doesnt Want You to Do

Requiring a plumber in Oakville can be unavoidable if you are dealing with a drippy or burst pipe. But a lot of the time, you can prevent blocking your pipes or needing repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be costly to take care of.

Here are some of the most frequent troubles our Experts get calls about at Abbey Air Home Services by Enercare and how you can prevent them.

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Although they might be referred to as “flushable wipes,” the right place for them is the garbage. The only thing that should be flushed (other than the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you use a septic system.

A Canadian study that tested 101 such wipes found they all failed a flushability test, according to Forbes. Because flushable wipes don’t disintegrate like toilet paper, they can clog your sewer line and cause your toilet to back up.

They can also wreak havoc on city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can attach to other gross things that shouldn’t be disposed of down the toilet, including cooking oil and hygienic products, to lead to a fatberg. Along with being unhygienic and just plain nasty, environmental nonprofit Green America says these masses are expensive to fix. If you rely on a city sewer system, those are expenses that could get passed on to you down the road.

No matter what kind of wipe you’re using—makeup remover, cleansing, baby or sanitizing—it should be tossed in the trash once you’re complete.

2. Flushing Other Things That Should Go in the Waste Bin

Besides flushable wipes, there are a couple other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These cover:

  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Makeup remover pads
  • Cat litter

In addition to wipes, these things can plug your sewer line and overflow your toilet, saddling you with an expensive (and gross) mess.

3. Using Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

Having drop-in toilet fresheners may seem like a great way to keep your toilet bowl clean, but they might cause more trouble than good. These tablets usually contain chemicals, including bleach, which can wreck rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets melt, they can clog the toilet and stop it from flushing.

4. Buying Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is blocked, your first response may be to purchase a low-priced liquid drain cleaner. However, there are several things you should realize about these drain cleaners.

  1. They’re toxic. Drain cleaners are a toxic combination of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also make powerful fumes that can cause respiratory irritation. 
  2. They can eat through your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, think about what they can do to your pipes: corrosion, breaks and even failure. 
  3. They’re harmful to the environment. As you can determine, these substances aren’t exactly environmentally friendly. 
  4. They might not even unplug your drain. In spite of all the chemicals they have, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a little while. That’s since they often force the clog deeper into your plumbing until it creates a major problem.

If you do need to use a drain cleaner, we recommend using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners have bacteria and enzymes to eliminate clogs and unpleasant odors. While they can take more time than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re safer for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you’re dealing with a strong clog that just won’t go away, contacting a professional plumber like Abbey Air Home Services by Enercare is your best option for drain cleaning. While you can rent a drain auger or plumbing snake, it’s faster to have an Expert complete the job. That way, you’ll also skip harming your pipes and a host of bad issues such as leaks, broken seals and unpleasant odors.

After your drain is working like it should, keep it that way by using a screen to keep hair or food scraps from clogging it again.

5. Pouring Grease Down Your Sink

It might seem like it’s not a problem to drain a small amount of grease down your drain. But over time, that grease can build up and block your pipes. If the grease leaks into the sewer system, it can cling to flushable wipes and create a yucky fatberg like we discussed previously.

To avoid plumbing troubles, drain the fat into a can. After it solidifies, you can dump it in the garbage.

6. Relying on Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a useful tool for breaking up little amounts of food waste. But it can’t eliminate everything. To prevent malfunctions or clogs, we advise not putting these foods down your garbage disposal:

  • Coffee grounds 
  • Pasta, oats, rice and bread 
  • Bones, nuts, pits and seeds 
  • Eggshells 
  • Onions and potato peels 
  • Fibrous fruits and vegetables 
  • Grease

If your garbage disposal smells bad, you can revive it with citrus peels or a blend of baking soda and vinegar.

7. Ignoring Maintenance for Your Plumbing System

Just like your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also has to have routine tune-ups. This service can help us find small issues before they cause big problems, like a damaging water leak. Some of the issues we check for involve:

  • Correct water pressure 
  • Leaky or blocked pipes 
  • Adequately working supply lines and plumbing fixtures like sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do notice trouble, like a leaking sink or pipe, it’s important to get it taken care of right away before it gets bigger or causes damage.

8. Attempting to Fix Your Plumbing Yourself

When you are dealing with a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, we suggest calling an Expert at Abbey Air Home Services by Enercare for leak repair before it gets bigger or results in damage.

Mending plumbing is a detailed job that’s best completed by pros. There’s a reason why plumbers go through extensive certification and licensing. Don’t attempt water pipe repair without help or hire a handyman, because you could end up wasting time and making a costlier expensive problem.

9. Trying to Service Your Water Heater Without Professional Help

When it comes to your water heater, service and upkeep is best left to the professionals. This includes draining it or checking the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t completed correctly, you could burn yourself with boiling water or flood your house.

Pro water heater maintenance gives peace of mind that your water heater is running like it should. It also offers you notice ahead of time when it’s time to start thinking about water heater replacement, because they usually only run for about 10 years.

10. Not Realizing Where the Water Main Shutoff Is

In the event your residence has a big water leak, it’s important to be aware of where the main water valve is and how to shut it off. This valve is typically situated in a mechanical room near your water heater.

Here’s how to switch off the main water valve in your home:
  • If it has a wheel: circle it clockwise until you can’t anymore. 
  • If it has a lever: move it about a quarter of the way.

If you’re still not sure where the valve is located, Abbey Air Home Services by Enercare can help you find it.

It’s also a smart idea to install a water leak protection system that will alert you and turn off the water if there’s a problem. You can even use a smart system to watch water use and tell you via your phone if there’s trouble.

Whatever plumbing issue you’re experiencing, our Expert plumbers at Abbey Air Home Services by Enercare are here to help you. And we’ll stand behind our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll have peace of mind that your repairs were completed like they should. Reach us at 289-813-5566 to schedule your appointment right away!

*Not applicable to the Advantage Program. See your signed Advantage Program agreement for full details and exclusions. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee is subject to certain restrictions and limitations as set forth in the applicable Terms and Conditions.