The Top 10 Things Your Plumber Doesnt Want You to Do

Requiring a plumber in Oklahoma City can be inevitable if you are dealing with a dripping or broken pipe. But the majority of times, you can stop clogging your pipes or requiring repairs for your garbage disposal, both of which can be costly to fix.

Here are some of the most frequent troubles we receive calls about at Gordon's Service Experts and how you can prevent them.

1. Flushing “Flushable” Wipes

Despite the fact they might be called “flushable wipes,” the right location for them is the trash. The only thing that should be flushed (except for the obvious) is toilet paper and septic treatments, if you rely on a septic system.

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

They can also cause problems with city sewer systems or your septic tank. These wipes can combine with other nasty things that shouldn’t go down the toilet, like cooking fat and hygienic products, to result in a fatberg. Besides being unhygienic and just plain yucky, environmental nonprofit Green America says these masses are costly to fix. If you’re on a city sewer system, those are bills that could get shuffled to you down the road.

Whatever style of wipe you’re using—makeup remover, cleansing, baby or sanitizing—it should go in the trash once you’re complete.

2. Flushing Other Things That Belong in the Garbage

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

  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Makeup remover pads
  • Cat litter

Along with wipes, these things can block your sewer line and overflow your toilet, saddling you with a costly (and gross) mess.

3. Using Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner Tabs

Having drop-in toilet fresheners could seem like a good way to keep your toilet bowl sanitary, but they might cause more trouble than good. These tablets often contain chemicals, such as bleach, which can eat through rubber parts in the tank. And as the tablets dissolve, they can block the toilet and keep it from flushing.

4. Using Chemical Drain Cleaners

If your sink is plugged, your immediate response might be to purchase a low-priced liquid drain cleaner. However, there are a few things you should realize about these drain cleaners.

  1. They’re poisonous. Drain cleaners are a toxic combination of chemicals that can burn your skin and eyes. They also produce intense fumes that can lead to respiratory irritation. 
  2. They can corrode your pipes. If these cleaners can burn your skin, consider what they can do to your piping: corrosion, breaks and even failure. 
  3. They’re bad for the environment. As you can determine, these substances aren’t extremely good for the environment. 
  4. They might not even work. Despite all the chemicals they include, drain cleaners sometimes don’t even work or only work for a limited time. That’s because they often push the clog further into your plumbing until it results in a big problem.

If you do need to use a drain cleaner, we advise using an enzymatic cleaner. These chemical-free cleaners rely on bacteria and enzymes to get rid of clogs and unpleasant odors. While they might require more time than a chemical-based cleaner, they’re healthier for you, your plumbing and the environment.

If you’re dealing with a difficult clog that just won’t break up, getting in touch with a professional plumber like Gordon's 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 pro do the job. That way, you’ll also avoid damaging your pipes and many other horrible issues such as leaks, nonworking seals and horrible odors.

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

5. Getting Rid of Grease Down Your Sink

It might seem like it’s not a issue to pour a small amount of fat down your pipes. But over time, that grease can accumulate and block your pipes. If the grease gets into the sewer system, it can stick to flushable wipes and develop a nasty fatberg like we discussed previously.

To avoid plumbing issues, drain the grease into a container. After it hardens, you can toss it in the garbage.

6. Using Your Garbage Disposal for Everything

Your garbage disposal is a helpful tool for getting rid of tiny food scraps. But it can’t break up everything. To avoid malfunctions 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 has a bad smell, you can clean 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 annual maintenance. This service can help us discover minor issues before they lead to big problems, like a damaging water leak. Some of the issues we are on the lookout for include:

  • Proper water pressure 
  • Drippy or clogged pipes 
  • Properly functioning supply lines and plumbing fixtures including sinks, tubs, showers and toilets

If you do notice an issue, like a leaking sink or pipe, it’s critical to get it taken care of right away before it becomes worse or causes damage.

8. Making an Attempt to Fix Your Plumbing on Your Own

When you are dealing with a dripping pipe or a leaking washing machine, we recommend calling an Expert at Gordon's Service Experts for leak repair before it gets bigger or results in damage.

Repairing plumbing is a complex job that’s best completed by specialists. There’s a reason why plumbers complete extensive certification and licensing. Don’t attempt water pipe repair without help or hire a handyman, as you could end up wasting time and having a costlier expensive problem.

9. Trying to Maintain Your Water Heater Without Professional Help

When it comes to your water heater, service and upkeep is best left to the pros. This includes draining it or examining the temperature and pressure valve. If this isn’t completed right, you could burn yourself with hot water or flood your home.

Professional water heater maintenance offers peace of mind that your water heater is working right. It also gives you advance notice when it’s time to start thinking about water heater replacement, because they usually only run for about 10 years.

10. Not Being Aware of Where the Water Main Shutoff Is

When your home has a large water leak, it’s essential to know where the main water valve is and how to shut it off. This valve is usually located in a mechanical room near your water heater.

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

If you’re don’t know where the valve is located, Gordon's Service Experts can help you find it.

It’s also a good idea to have a water leak protection system that will sound the alarm and shut off the water if there’s an issue. You can even have a smart system to watch water use and tell you through your phone if there’s trouble.

Whatever plumbing trouble you’re dealing with, our Expert plumbers at Gordon's Service Experts are available to help you. And we’ll support our work with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for a year, so you’ll be sure that your repairs were completed correctly. Give us a call at 405-432-2197 to request 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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