Plumbing Tips

Detail of water attachment to the washing machine.Are you planning to get away this winter? ‘Tis almost the season for holiday visits with family, catching some fresh powder on the slopes, or just getting out of town for a while. While all of these are excellent ways to break away from it all, it’s important not to forget about your plumbing before you go! Even here in Texas, the unpredictability of winter cold fronts can take a toll on your home’s plumbing while you’re away.

Our number one goal at Rooter-Man is to protect your home, that’s why we’re proud to offer a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee. Our screened, professional North Houston plumbers have the know-how and tools to tackle a variety of plumbing problems, including help you prepare your plumbing before you go on vacation.

Follow these easy vacation plumbing tips to get your plumbing ready before you go on!

Leave your heat on

Even though it’s really tempting to turn your off while you’re gone in order to save both energy and money, it’s not really worth it. Shut off your heat and you run the risk of having your pipes freeze, or worse, burst! All it takes is one cold front or hard freeze like last winter and you just might have frozen pipes on your hands! To avoid this, keep your heat on at a minimum of 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

Check out your washing machine’s hoses

Washing machine hoses see a lot of wear and tear and only have a life expectancy of about 3 years. During this time major calcium build up can happen and cracks can form, causing leaks and other problems. Stop to take a good look at your washing machine’s hoses before you go so you can spot any potential issues. If you find anything, don’t ignore! Call us immediately!

Send your water heater on vacation too!

Not literally of course, but water heaters have a vacation mode that can be turned on before you leave. If your water heater isn’t equipped with this option, simply turn it off. Both options not only save power and therefore money, but they also reduce the chances of damage caused by frozen pipes leading to and from your water heater. This is important because a burst pipe can can damage your water and cause the water to drain from it all over the floor. Not only can this cause water damage, but the heating element in your hot water heater will burn out without water. Talk about a hot mess!

Shut off the main water valve

Turn off your main water valve if you’re going to be away for any extended period of time. This is extremely important because it can greatly reduce the chances of flooding by preventing water from continuing to flow into your home’s pipes, where it will freeze and may burst. Yikes! Be sure to drain any water leftover in the pipes by opening the hot and cold water faucets. If you happen to have a boiler, just skip this step because your boiler needs water to keep heating your home!

Keep drain odors where they belong…nowhere

The thought — or smell — of coming home to foul drain odors is pretty gross, isn’t it? Well, you can prevent them for happening by giving your drains a thorough cleaning before you go. Or, why not call us and we can clean your drains for you! Any kind of food residue stuck in your garbage disposal or kitchen sink drain will get pretty funky while you’re away so be sure to clean them. Similarly, clean your bathroom drains with natural cleaners such as vinegar and baking soda to flush away residue and odors. Bleach works too!

Whether it’s a big job, a small fix, or somewhere in between, Rooter-Man’s North Texas plumbing technicians are always to the rescue! Remember, your satisfaction is our guarantee, so calls us right away with plumbing questions or concerns!

Baby on toiletMany people think anything goes when it comes to flushing things down the toilet. You place it into the bowl, push down the handle, and ta-da it disappears. But our Klein, TX plumbers probably know better than anyone that toilets and plumbing systems in general can actually be quite fickle. The fact of the matter is, if you flush just anything down your toilet, you’re bound to pay the consequences. If you want to avoid toilet problems, sewer backups, and other plumbing system issues, we recommend keeping these items out of the toilet.

10 Items You Should Never Flush Down a Toilet in Klein, TX

  • Paper TowelsCommercial plumbing service is often needed at businesses that have public bathrooms because paper towels wind up getting flushed. Paper towels are too big and thick to be flushed and are highly likely to clog a toilet. If you keep paper towels in your bathroom, be sure there is a wastepaper basket there as well!
  • Cat Litter – It seems reasonable enough to flush your cat’s waste down the toilet, but if it’s covered in cat litter, don’t do it! The litter is designed to clump when it comes into contact with moisture, so it is likely to clump up in your plumbing pipes, causing a clog.
  • “Flushable Wipes” – When plumbers see the word “flushable” on a box of wipes, we cringe. The wipes are simply NOT flushable. The wipes might make it down the toilet, but they must be filtered out eventually which is costing cities worldwide big bucks.
  • Prophylactics– The likelihood of these causing a toilet clog is high and you certainly don’t want one to pop back up into the bowl.
  • Dental Floss – Believe it or not dental floss is not biodegradable, and it has a tendency to bunch up into balls, causing bigger clogs than you might think.
  • Feminine Hygiene Products – The manufacturers are never going to tell you, so we might as well: tampons should not be flushed. Because tampons are absorbent and don’t break down quickly, the city’s waste treatment plant must filter them out and take them to a landfill.
  • Food – Why are people flushing food down the toilet? We don’t know. Make sure the little ones know that the toilet bowl is not the appropriate bowl for their cheerios, because flushing food is a surefire way to clog a toilet.
  • Medicine – Whether new or expired, medications should never be flushed. Hormones and pharmaceuticals get into the water supply and can have a negative effect on the health of local wildlife.
  • Cotton Balls & Swabs – You may think these items are small and harmless, but they have a tendency to gather together in plumbing pipes, causing ugly clogs.
  • Cigarette Butts – Did you know that cigarette butts are one of the most common types of litter found in the ocean? While they might look small and easy to flush, they won’t break down quickly and will release chemicals into the water supply.

Clogged toilets and sewer lines can be messy and inconvenient, but many times these problems can be avoided when you practice good flushing habits. Teach your children what to flush and what not to flush and keep a trashcan handy for the unflushables! For drain clearing or sewer service in Klein, TX, give Rooter-Man Plumbers a call!

Stress Mother Watching Kids Make A MessThere are a few plumbing problems that present themselves most often during the summer months. If you notice one of these three plumbing issues, the best thing you can do is contact a Spring, TX plumber right away before the problem escalates. Don’t let the need for a plumbing repair put a damper on your summer fun—Rooter-Man plumbers are here to take care of the dirty work so you don’t have to!

Common Summer Plumbing Problems in North Houston & Spring, TX

Clogged Toilets – Toilets can become clogged at any time of year, but we notice that toilet clogs occur more often during the summer months when children are home from school. Make sure that young children understand how much toilet paper is appropriate to use. If you decide to plunge a toilet, reach for a flange plunger rather than a cup plunger because these are better at creating the suction you need to loosen a clog.

Backed-Up Sewer Lines – The excessive rainwater that comes with summer downpours and storms often seeps into cracks in sewer lines. Tree roots, which are drawn to sewer pipes for nutrition, like to creep into tiny cracks and then grown and expand, causing damage. At the first sign of a backup, give us a call for sewer service. We can even do a sewer line video inspection to pinpoint problems that would not otherwise be visible.

Broken Garbage Disposals – Garbage disposers can take a lot of abuse in the summer during parties and cookouts. To avoid needing a garbage disposal repair, don’t let your garbage disposal fill up before turning it on and run water into it as it operates. You can also help prevent a garbage disposal clog or breakdown by keeping items like watermelon, corn cobs, large bones, grease, cooking oil, celery, potatoes, and pasta out of the disposer.

At Rooter-Man Plumbers, your satisfaction is guaranteed so give us a call for any plumbing service that you need this summer! We provide both residential and commercial plumbing service in Spring, Klein, Magnolia, Tomball, Cy-Fair, The Woodlands, Conroe, and all over North Houston!

House Plumbing SystemAs December approaches, you’re likely preparing for a few festive gatherings; however, your house plumbing system will be putting in overtime to handle all the extra cooking, flushing, showering, and washing. That’s on top of the additional strain from colder weather. At Rooter-Man Plumbers, we encourage all homeowners to make sure your plumbing is geared up for the holidays.

Secure Outdoor Lines

Disconnect all hoses and sprinkler systems in the fall. If you have an air compressor, you might want to carefully clear out your sprinkler lines to rid them of excess water. Ensure that outdoor spigots and fixtures are clear of leaks, and address any problems before the weather turns cold. Insulate any exposed pipes with sleeves or wrapping, including those in your garage or crawl space.

Clear Your Gutters

Ensure that rain water has an unrestricted flow so it doesn’t collect on your roof or gutters. Be sure to regularly clear out leaves as they accumulate throughout the fall.

Prep Your Bathroom

Having extra guests with apple cider means your house plumbing system stays busy. Try to spread out your showers throughout the day, and clear your shower head of mineral deposits to avoid a false decrease in pressure.

Prep Your Kitchen

Always avoid pouring cooking oil down your kitchen sink. Likewise, don’t block your garbage disposal with stringy foods or fruit pits. You also might want to run the dishwasher overnight to maintain water pressure for your house guests.

Have Your Water Heater Inspected

A professional inspection is the best way to ensure that your water heater lasts through the winter. With that, you might also consider an inspection on the sewage, furnace, and septic systems.

Don’t risk a broken water line as you’re carving up that turkey; keep your house plumbing system battle-ready. For more great winterization tips, get in touch with Rooter-Man Plumbers at [phone].

Fall Leaves With RakeThere are several Mayhem commercials that make light of winter problems. The main point the commercials intend to get across is for homeowners to be prepared. Disaster can strike at any time, and no one wants to be caught unprepared. This year, Rooter-Man wanted to offer our clients a few helpful plumbing tips. Prepare yourselves! Winter is coming! While this is not Game of Thrones, the classic line is still vital. No one wants to be in the middle of the coldest months of the year and have a broken water or sewer line. Avoid this problem with these helpful winterization tips.

Fall Plumbing Maintenance Tips

  • Hoses and sprinklers should be disconnected and stored
  • Inspect all hose bibbs or outdoor spigots, faucets, fixtures, and pipes for drips or leaks. Be sure to have these repaired before winter.
  • Insulate all exposed pipes in areas such as crawl spaces or along exterior walls.
  • Have your hot water heater inspected. This ensures your unit will continue working through the winter months without problems. Our plumbing technicians can spot potential problems and offer solutions before it gets too cold.
  • Schedule routine maintenance for your furnace and sewer/septic systems.
  • Clear all gutters and downspouts of leaves and debris that have collected. Be sure to do this regularly throughout the fall so that they are always clear. Debris can cause major problems if not cleared before winter. As the water collects and freezes, the weight can become too much for the gutter, causing it to rip from the wall. The water could also collect and freeze on the roof, causing serious damage.

Now, these are only a few of the many tips you can follow to be prepared for the winter months. For more information or to schedule a routine maintenance inspection, give us a call today. We are always available to help answer your questions and resolve your plumbing problems. Remember, no matter what issue you may experience, it’s Rooter-Man to the Rescue!

If you call a Tomball plumbing company because you need a toilet repair, drain cleaning, or a garbage disposal repair, it would be mean for the plumber to say well you shouldn’t have… done whatever it is you did wrong. But our Tomball plumbers thought, ya know what would be nice? To tell our valued customers about the things they shouldn’t do to their plumbing before problems arise! So here ya go:

The 5 Things People Do to Their Plumbing That Make Tomball Plumbers Shudder

  1. Treat the garbage disposal like a dumpster. Though garbage disposers can handle a lot of scraps and tidbits, they too have their limitations. Steer clear of loading your garbage disposal with things like celery, corn husks, glass, metal, plastic, cigarette butts, large bones, grease, and cooking oil. Also, do your garbage disposer a favor, and run some cold water down the drain while it’s operating.
  2. Assume the washing machine hose will last forever. Washing machine and dishwasher hoses wear out over time and can sometimes burst. Replace old hoses with shiny new stainless steal ones to avoid a flood.
  3. Attempt to clean their drains with harsh chemicals. Those store-bought chemicals rarely work, can damage plumbing pipes, and can seriously injure you if you get them in your eyes or on your skin. Skip the troubles and hazards by opting for professional drain cleaning service when needed. Also, a little drain maintenance can help you prevent drain clogs.
  4. Flush materials that are bound to clog the drain pipe. Unfortunately, not all “flushable” items live up to their name. Feminine care products, baby wipes, paper towels, make-up removing pads, and cat litter are notorious for causing toilet troubles, so just toss those items into the trash as often as possible.
  5. Cleanse the toilet with drop-in toilet fresheners. That lovely shade of blue toilet water may be appealing but these fresheners can actually wear out the functioning parts inside the toilet tank. Avoid needing toilet repairs by leaving these fresheners on the shelf at the store.

Rooter-Man Plumbers are proud to be your plumbing’s best friends in Magnolia, Tomball, Conroe, Cy-Fair, Klein, and the surrounding areas. Just give us a call for plumbing service, plumbing installations, and repairs. And remember, the better you treat your plumbing, the better it will treat you!