March 11 is World Plumbing Day, an international event initiated by the World Plumbing Council in 2010. Plumbing is an oft-overlooked feature in the modern world, but it's vital to public health and safety.
Just think of what it must have been like in 2010 following the earthquake in Haiti or in 2011 during the aftermath of Japan's tsunami. These instances make you realize how much we take for granted an on-demand waste removal system and access to clean water daily.
How will you celebrate World Plumbing Day? The World Plumbing Council plans to increase awareness about the importance of expanding the availability of fresh water to communities around the world. Since you already have pipes installed in your home, you can treat World Plumbing Day as a reminder to have your drains, fixtures and pipes checked.
Areas of Your Plumbing to Have Maintained
Think about everywhere you have access to water in your home: the kitchen, laundry room, utility room, bathrooms and outdoors are the most common places. It's important to service all areas of your plumbing that connect the faucets, showerheads, hoses and spigots together. Here are some examples:
- General water pipe maintenance: Check your water bill monthly for higher-than-usual rates, which could indicate a leak. If you see a wet spot on the ground in dry weather, the leak could be located where the water service line meets your residence. Exposed pipes should also be protected from the elements to avoid frozen pipes.
- Bathroom plumbing maintenance: Make such all the fixtures in your bathroom are up to par. This involves unclogging the sink and shower drains; measuring flow rates and installing higher-efficiency fixtures if needed; and checking for toilet leaks.
- Kitchen plumbing maintenance: Make sure to take care of your garbage disposal every year with simple maintenance. Also be sure that your freezer line is clear and in good quality.
- Laundry room plumbing maintenance: Old washer hoses become brittle over time, but a quick once over by a plumber puts your mind at ease.
- Water heater maintenance: Your water heater requires maintenance about once a year. A few steps - such as testing the temperature and pressure relief valve, draining the tank, and checking the anode rod - help this appliance last years longer.
Why Plumbing Maintenance is Important
Is it really worth having your plumbing system maintained? Can't you just wait until something's wrong to call a plumber? You could, but regular maintenance offers the following benefits:
- Prevent mold: By exposing leaks early, you can protect your home from intrusive mold growth. Pipe leaks behind the wall could go unnoticed until the damage is done. However, when you make maintenance a priority, plumbers have the chance to pinpoint and repair leaks to keep mold growth at bay.
- Catch hidden problems: The majority of your home's plumbing is hidden underground and behind walls, so it's hard to know when something's awry. For example, what appears to be a simple toilet clog could be tree roots intruding on your plumbing.
- Improve efficiency: A corroded water heater, scale buildup in the pipes and plumbing leaks all degrade efficiency and bloat your water bills. By catching hidden problems and keeping your water appliances in good condition, plumbing system maintenance decreases your water consumption and lowers your bills.
- Enjoy peace of mind: There's no convenient time for a plumbing leak or broken water heater. Maintenance lets you move forward with confidence, knowing your plumbing is in great condition.
For more information about celebrating World Plumbing Day with a little maintenance, please contact Mr. Rooter®. Our courteous plumbers are here to help.