If you are like most Americans, your home is one of your most valuable assets. And, once you have it, its upkeep and maintenance are your responsibility. Among these responsibilities is ensuring that your home’s plumbing system doesn’t ever malfunction.

Plumbing issues come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. From the relatively minor and inexpensive to fix to the complex and costly issues capable of causing serious damage to floors, walls, and personal property.

The following are some of the most common plumbing issues:

1.  Turning off all the water inside your home

In the event of a water leak, pipe break, or water heater leak, you may need to turn off all the water inside your home. To do this, you need to find out where the main water shutoff valve off is.

Now, most shutoff valves are located in the basement, near your water meter. Shutoff valves are generally classified into two: lever-style and knob-style. If yours is a lever-style, then you’ll need to turn the lever clockwise to shut off the water.

If your valve is a knob-style, then you’ll need to turn the lever clockwise to turn the water off. Installing valve tags to identify your main shutoff valves is a smart thing to do.

2.  Remove a sink trap

Your sink trap can get disgusting…have you ever smelled or seen one? I don’t recommend it.

When your sink trap is clogged, you need to do a few things.

  • First and foremost, you need to detach the trap from the sink. This is easy. You only need to loosen the two nuts holding it.
  • Second, you’ll need to catch the residual draining water. For this purpose, you’ll need to position a pan beneath the plumbing pipes.
  • Next, you need to remove any debris causing the clogging. For the scrapping, you may need something like an old butter knife.
  •  After you have done this, reattach the clean trap and secure it into place using nuts.

3.  Re-caulk a vanity sink

While caulking makes your sink impervious to water for many, many years, it doesn’t last forever. Over time, caulking can wear, crack, discolor, and shrink, which may eventually lead to water damage.

At that point, re-caulking becomes necessary. The following are some things you may need for this purpose.

  • Plastic putty knife – This will help you scrape away the old caulk.
  • A clean rag – When dampened with denatured alcohol, the rag can help wipe down the seam between the sink and countertop.
  • Once you have these items, the next step is to clean the area that needs re-caulking using the clean rag. Leave the area to dry completely. This may require a day or two. Then, you’ll need to apply a paste bead of caulk all the way around the sink. Leave it to dry. This should take a day again.

4.  Flush out your water heater

Have you flushed your water heater lately? While it may seem boring, this vital chore helps remove the sediment that has accumulated at the bottom of the tank. This is particularly vital if you live in an area with hard water.

Although models vary, to flush your water heater you’ll need to:

  • Turn the water heater off. If your water heater is a gas heater, turn your thermostat to the “pilot” setting. If you have an electric water heater, turn off the power switch.
  • Turn the cold water valve off.
  • Attach a garden or drain hose to the drain valve on the side of the valve.
  • Start draining. The water may be a bit brown at the beginning, but it’ll clear up as you continue draining it.

5.  Fix the low water pressure

This is also another important plumbing tip that you should know as a homeowner. Getting trickles out of a faucet can feel rather frustrating.

Fortunately, there is a solution to bringing back the strong, powerful stream of water.

The first thing you need to do is to check the pressure running through each faucet. If only one faucet has the problem, then mineral deposits is likely the culprit.

Here, you’ll just need to remove the mineral buildup so your faucets work like new. However, if all faucets are affected, call a plumber straight away.

There you have it. Top 5 basic plumbing tips every homeowner should know.

That said, if the issue seems a bit difficult for you, then the best course of action to take would be to call a plumbing expert right away.

Contact our plumbing professionals if you run into any problems and don’t forget to check out our monthly specials.

These are just some of the plumbing issues that you can expect to encounter as a homeowner. I hope you can save some time and frustration from these tips from Scott at!