Save Cash with these 4 DIY Plumbing Solutions!
Looking for DIY plumbing solutions to save money? While there are a lot of plumbing tasks that you shouldn’t attempt on your own (like using a professional grade auger or fiddling around with your water heater pressure valve), there are plenty of safe DIY plumbing hacks that are easy to do and can save you an expensive plumbing appointment. Try the following plumbing tricks:
1. Save water and money without having to invest in a low-flush toilet.
Most toilets are water-wasters, but installing all new low-flush toilets is an investment. Older toilets require between 3-7 gallons of water for every single flush. Newer toilets use between 1.2-1.6 gallons per flush. That’s a significant savings in water costs, and it’s especially important in parts of the country where water is scarce.
However, not all of us can afford to invest in a low-flush toilet. To save money (and water), place a (full) 20-ounce bottle of water (or rocks – something heavy) in your toilet tank. The bottle will displace 20 ounces of water in your tank, reducing the amount of water used in each flush by 20 ounces. You may be able to get two bottles in the toilet tank; just play around with how much water you need for a good, effective flush (you don’t want to have to flush twice). Make sure the bottles don’t interfere with the flushing mechanisms, and remove the water bottles if you have an occasion where you need a more powerful flush.
2. Recover objects that have fallen into the toilet.
Forget the plunger or any other homemade apparatus like a bent coat hanger (bad idea: you can damage pipes). Instead, get out the wet/dry vac. Remove the filter and empty the cavity of any existing trash/debris. Then suck up the water and object from the toilet; you’ll hear the sound of the object as it is sucked up and emptied out into the vacuum cleaner.
3. Stop the dripping faucet that’s driving you nuts.
Yes, a dripping faucet should be replaced or fixed, but you can’t always get to it right away or may not be able to afford a plumber just yet. For the time being, wrap a piece of string or twine around the faucet and see if it works to augment the washer (which is probably warped and needs to be replaced.)
In most cases, dripping faucets are caused by a worn washer, a broken seal or a faulty faucet cartridge. In some cases, water pressure higher than 80 psi can cause a faucet to leak.
4. Unclog that drain.
First, get yourself a budget plastic Zip-It (usually under two bucks at your local hardware store) and see how much gunk and hair you can get out of the clogged drain. In most cases, you’ll discover a lot of junk has been washed down the drain and is easily dislodged. Just be careful to hook it and pull it out instead of jamming it further down into the drain, making the clog worse.
If that doesn’t work (or only partially works), squeeze 2-4 tablespoons of degreasing dish soap (we are fans of Dawn, but any degreasing dish soap is fine) down the drain. Wait a few minutes, and then follow the detergent with a pot of boiling hot water.
Once you get the drain clean, invest in an environmentally friendly drain cleaner. We like BioClean because it contains bacteria that eats the bad gunk and cleans your drain pro-actively. Use a cleaner like this once a month for best results.
Need Charlotte NC Plumbers?
Already got a Charlotte plumbing problem on your hands? Need help with an existing problem or looking for proactive measures to prevent a problem you feel is eminent?
Give us a call at 704-269-1066 or use our online contact form to get service 24/7, 365 days a year. We serve a 30-mile radius of the Charlotte area, and we’ve got fully stocked trucks, and that means we will most likely have the required parts when we get to your home. Our warehouse is also stocked, and we own our own heavy equipment, meaning you don’t have to wait for us to rent equipment before tackling a job.
Most importantly, we’ve been in business since 1997 and are committed first and foremost to customer satisfaction. At the end of the day, we truly care that you feel we got the job done well, done right, and done for a fair price. That’s why our motto is “Serviced Once, Client for Life.”