Let Green Planet ready your toilets, pipes, and gas lines ready for a busy summer.
Summer in Australia means more sun, and more time to spend with family and friends. With a multitude of activities coming your way, your endurance will surely be put to the test. Unfortunately, so does your plumbing’s.
The summer heat means you will need to take more showers and have more clothes to wash. Make sure you prepare your plumbing system for the extra pressure that summertime will bring to avoid expensive repairs that could have been easily avoided.
11 ways to get your plumbing system ready for summer
We all need to take good care of our plumbing system if we do not want to pay for a costly repair. We need to do it all year round, and summer is the best time to start. Here are some ways to prepare your plumbing for the hot summer days ahead.
1. Check all fixtures for leaks.
The very first thing to do to prepare your plumbing system for summer is to check every fixture in your home. Start with those inside your house, including showerheads, sinks, bathtubs, toilets, and faucets, and make your way outside. Look for leaks that could compromise or damage your plumbing.
Checking faucets and showerheads is simple. Just turn them on and check that the pressure is not low. If it is, there’s a chance that you might have a leak.
Your toilets will be one of the busiest fixtures in your home come summer. Between family dinners and get-togethers with friends, your toilets and bathrooms are going to be put under so much pressure. You don’t want to be caught with a toilet that does not work, so check them before summer officially starts.
You can put a few drops of food colouring or liquid pigment into the toilet tank. If you see that colour bleed into the bowl after a couple of minutes, there is likely a leak.
2. Inspect your valves and hoses.
We do not think much about plumbing during summer because we assume that only frozen pipes can burst or leak. But loose valves and hoses also leak, which can flood the areas of your property. Here are three things that you can do to prevent leaks.
- Check that every hose has a tight fit.
- Test that all valves work by turning them on and off a few times.
- Check that your washing machine hose doesn’t have cracks and leaks.
3. Inspect exposed plumbing.
During your routine plumbing inspection and maintenance, don’t forget to look at all the exposed plumbing. You can find these pipes that in a crawlspace, under the sink, through that basement, or outside your home. Check them for anything that looks like a rupture or leak.
Bear in mind that leaks are not always obvious, so be on the lookout for something that indicates a leak. This could be moss growing on the pipe or a patch of mould near it.
4. Check your basement plumbing.
Your basement plumbing – if you have one – will need to be checked as well. Most likely, it has exposed pipes, so start from there. Pools of water, wet spots and a mouldy smell could signify a leak, which must be addressed immediately. Be sure to also look for excessive rusting, as this could cause a major problem in the not-so-distant future.
5. Check the sprinklers.
You do not want a dead lawn, especially when you have a few parties and get-togethers planned for the summer. Therefore, checking your sprinkler every now and then is vital.
As your usage increases, some parts of the sprinkler, especially the small ones hidden inside, can become worn out and cause leaks. You would want to fix this immediately because not doing so can cost you more money on bigger repairs.
6. Don’t forget to check the gutters.
You usually see heaps of fallen branches and dead leaves in summer. Unfortunately, these natural waste clog your gutters and drains. You need to check that none of this debris gets stuck in your gutters or down pipes, which can compromise your plumbing system and the integrity of your home as a whole.
Clean gutters are also a vital defence against bushfires, as these dried leaves and branches can easily catch fire. Make it a regular habit to check your gutters and drains to ensure that nothing gets past you.
7. Have your drains cleaned by professionals.
You might have flushed certain things down the drain, such as grease, large bits of food, bones and oils, without meaning to. These can cause blockages and clog your plumbing system.
Schedule a professional drain cleaning service to start your summer off without a worry. It’s best not to DIY as this work is quite technical and a bit risky. Also, avoid chemical drain cleaners, as these can compromise and damage your pipes.
8. Test your sump pump.
Some parts of Australia experience episodes of heavy rain, even during summer. Heavy rains can sometimes get your plumbing backed up, which can flood your home and cause all kinds of damage. Ensure this does not happen to you by constantly checking your sump pump. Make this a part of your plumbing maintenance routine so you don’t overlook it.
To test your sump pump, pour a bucket of water into it. The pump should start working right away. If it doesn’t, call your trusted plumber immediately.
9. Test your water heater.
Even though you probably would not need your water heater during summer, you still need to have it checked. Experts recommend servicing your water heater once every six to 12 months to ensure it works properly. If your water heater is damaged, it may burst at any time, causing flooding to your property.
Whilst performing the inspection, you can take this opportunity to clean your water heater. Have a licensed plumber remove the sediment deposits and other debris that have accumulated inside the heater for uninterrupted service.
This is also your chance to turn the hot water temperature down on your water heater. As you will no longer need much hot water during summer, this can help keep the bills down.
10. Check your appliances.
Some of your appliances and equipment are connected to your plumbing system in one way or another. Therefore, it is crucial that you also check and test them before they cause a bigger problem. Here are some appliances and equipment that should be on your “to-check” list.
- Washing machine
Summer days mean doing much physical activities. You can go biking, hiking, play footy, or spend the day at the beach. Whatever your preferred activity is, you will indeed be doing voluminous laundry. Your washing machine will need to work overtime, so it would be good to check it to make sure it is working properly before summer starts.
Check that the hoses and pipes connected to the drainage system do not have cracks and leaks. After all, you would not want your washing machine to break down just when the days are too hot. Just imagine the pile of sweaty, sandy clothes that will accumulate without a working washing machine.
- Gas barbecue
Summer means spending a lot of time outdoors, having a barbecue with your family and friends. This time, it’s your gas BBQ grill that will be put to so much use. Make sure it is working perfectly. Also, check the gas pipes and hoses for damages or leaks.
The soap test is a simple yet effective way to test for leaks:
- Place soapy water on the pipes and hose.
- If bubbles form, you might have a leak.
- Call your licensed plumber and have this fixed as soon as possible.
- Check also that your gas cylinders do not have a leak and that the date stamped on them is still valid.
- Gas stoves
Since you will have many people come over for dinners and maybe game nights, you will need to do a lot of cooking. Before you get busy preparing food and entertaining, check your gas stove first. You can also use the soap test to check your gas stove hose and pipes for leaks.
11. Remind guests to put trash items in the bins.
If your home is a favourite hangout of kids and teens, remind them where to put their trash. Some visitors tend to flush things like tissues and paper towels down the toilet when they can’t find the trash bin. Make sure you mark your bins clearly. This can help prevent clogging and save you from expensive maintenance costs.
Green Planet Plumbing can help get your Newcastle plumbing system ready for summer.
If you want your summer to be worry-free, call Green Planet Plumbing.
We are a team of fully licensed local plumbers who are experts in blocked drains, sewer jetting, hot water systems and backflow prevention. Our customers are from Newcastle, Maitland, Lake Macquarie and the Hunter Valley. We have a 24/7 on-call emergency service, so we can help you no matter the time of day (or night!). Call us now on 02 4911 9402 or send an enquiry here.