10 Things Your Plumber Wants You to Stop Doing Right Away

Having to have a plumber in Albany can be necessary if you are dealing with a drippy or broken pipe. But a lot of the time, you can avoid clogging your pipes or breaking your garbage disposal, both of which can be costly to repair.

Here are some of the most regular problems our professionals get calls about at D.A. Bennett Service Experts and how you can stop them.

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Despite the fact they might be known as “flushable wipes,” the ideal spot for them is the waste bin. The only thing that should be flushed (apart from the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you use a septic system.

A Canadian study that looked at 101 such wipes learned they all failed a flushability test, according to Forbes. As flushable wipes don’t dissolve like toilet paper, they can plug your sewer line and make your toilet back up.

They can also cause a lot of trouble to city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can conglomerate with other yucky things that shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet, such as cooking fat and hygienic products, to result in a fatberg. In addition to being unsanitary and just plain gross, environmental nonprofit Green America says these masses are costly to fix. If you use a city sewer system, those are costs that could get assigned to you in the long run.

Whichever 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 Trash

Other than flushable wipes, there are a few other things that don’t belong in your toilet. These include:

  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Makeup remover pads
  • Cat litter

In addition to wipes, these things can clog your sewer line and back up your toilet, sticking you with a costly (and nasty) mess.

3. Relying on Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

Using drop-in toilet fresheners could seem like a great way to keep your toilet bowl sanitary, but they can do more damage than good. These tablets usually contain chemicals, such as bleach, which can destroy rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets break down, they can clog the toilet and prevent it from flushing.

4. Dumping Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is clogged, your first answer could be to purchase a cheap liquid drain cleaner. However, there are a few things you should realize about these drain cleaners.

  1. They’re toxic. Drain cleaners are a toxic blend of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also produce powerful fumes that can result in respiratory irritation. 
  2. They can eat away at your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, consider what they can do to your pipes: corrosion, fractures and even failure. 
  3. They’re bad for the environment. As you can determine, these substances aren’t exactly helpful for the environment. 
  4. They might not even unplug your drain. Regardless of all the chemicals they include, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a little while. That’s due to the fact they often force the clog deeper into your plumbing until it creates a huge problem.

If you do require 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 could take more time than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re healthier for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you’re experiencing a tough clog that just won’t dissolve, getting in touch with a professional plumber like D.A. Bennett Service Experts is your smartest option for drain cleaning. While you can rent a drain auger or plumbing snake, it’s faster to have a professional finish the job. That way, you’ll also avoid damaging your pipes and many other horrible issues such as leaks, broken seals and troublesome odors.

After your drain is flowing freely, keep it that way by using a screen to keep hair or food scraps from blocking it again.

5. Dumping Grease Down Your Sink

It can seem like it’s not a issue to pour a small amount of grease down your sink. But as time passes, that grease can accumulate and clog your pipes. If the grease finds its way into the sewer system, it can cling to flushable wipes and lead to a gross fatberg like we mentioned earlier.

To skip plumbing troubles, drain the fat into a bowl. After it cools, you can throw it away in the trash.

6. Turning to Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a beneficial tool for getting rid of tiny bits of food. But it can’t break up everything. To stop issues or clogs, we suggest not putting these things 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 is smelly, you can revive it with citrus peels or a mix of baking soda and vinegar.

7. Skipping Maintenance for Your Plumbing System

Much like your heating and cooling system, your plumbing also needs routine service. This service can help us spot little issues before they lead to big problems, like a damaging water leak. Some of the problems we are on the lookout for include:

  • Correct water pressure 
  • Leaky or clogged pipes 
  • Correctly working supply lines and plumbing fixtures including sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do spot an issue, such as a leaking sink or pipe, it’s important to get it taken care of immediately before it becomes bigger or leads to damage.

8. Attempting to Fix Your Plumbing Yourself

When you are experiencing a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, we suggest calling an Expert at D.A. Bennett Service Experts for leak repair before it grows or leads to damage.

Fixing plumbing is an in-depth 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 yourself or get a handyman, as you could end up wasting time and making a costlier expensive problem.

9. Trying to Service Your Water Heater Yourself

When it comes to your water heater, service and maintenance is best left to the pros. This includes draining it or testing the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t performed correctly, you could burn yourself with hot water or flood your residence.

Pro water heater maintenance gives peace of mind that your water heater is working right. It also provides you a heads-up when it’s time to start planning for water heater replacement, because they typically only work for about 10 years.

10. Not Knowing Where the Water Main Shutoff Is

When your home has a big water leak, it’s critical to be knowledgeable about where the main water valve is and how to switch it off. This valve is typically located in a mechanical room near your water heater.

Here’s how to turn off the main water valve in your house:
  • If it has a wheel: turn 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, D.A. Bennett Service Experts can help you find it.

It’s also a wise idea to install a water leak protection system that will alert you and turn off the water if there’s trouble. You can even use a smart system to keep an eye on water use and notify you through your phone if there’s a problem.

Whatever plumbing problem you’re dealing with, our Expert plumbers at D.A. Bennett Service Experts are ready to help you. And we’ll back our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll know that your repairs were finished correctly. Contact us at 518-205-3324 to book your appointment today!

*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.
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