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Some might be easier to fix while others might require professional help. Although if you decide to fix it yourself, avoid these common plumbing mistakes to help minimize water damage and maintain care of your home.
1. Too Much Drain Cleaner
While liquid drain cleaners can help open pipes, they can also negatively impact galvanized plumbing systems. If you have galvanized plumbing in your home, a liquid drain cleaner full of harsh chemicals can cause potential leaks and rust damage. Instead, use more natural products to clear a drain such as creating a solution of baking soda and vinegar or using baking soda and lemon juice. If that doesn’t work, call a professional plumber to come in and clear the drain without using any strong chemicals.
2. Frozen Pipes
During winter, make sure to turn off and disconnect all outdoor water supplies, including garden hoses to avoid bursting pipes. A burst pipe can cause plenty of expensive water damage to your home. Take preventative measures to keep the pipes from freezing during the winter season such as draining the outdoor faucets and adding extra insulation to pipes near basements, crawl spaces and garages. If you plan to be away from your home during the cold months, be sure to drain the pipes before you go and have someone drop by periodically to check that the heating system in your home is still working as this can also cause frozen pipes.
3. Forgetting to Turn Off the Water
If a pipe does burst in your home or your washing machine leaks, you can turn off the main water supply in your home. This will help prevent more water damage from occurring and save money from expensive repairs. Some homeowners may try to leave the water on while they replace the old valve for a new one. If you are planning to do that, ensure you understand how to attach the new valve or faucet properly or else you could risk causing a small flood and mess in your home. Make sure you and your family members are aware of where the main shut-off valve in your home is. This could either be in the front wall of your basement or if your water comes from a well or spring, it ideally will be in the basement wall near the water source.
4. Not Having the Proper Tools or Training
In some instances, homeowners may feel they are prepared to take on a plumbing task that might be best left to the professionals. Using ordinary pipes and wrenches might not cut it, depending on the problem. If you need to take apart any pieces and parts, make sure to take pictures before you start so you can refer back to it.
Even if you are confident in your home improvement skills, you can always consult a professional plumber on whether it’s a simple fix or if it requires expertise assistance. While DIY is the most cost effective route, it could add up to more money if you make a mistake or make the plumbing predicament worse.
Water damage claims have surpassed fire damage claims. Keep your property protected by helping to prevent water damage and knowing what your home insurance policy covers. Review it to make sure you have the appropriate coverage.
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These tips are provided for information and prevention purposes only. They are general in nature, and Desjardins Insurance cannot be held liable for them. We recommend using caution and consulting an expert for comprehensive, tailored advice.
In Quebec, Desjardins Insurance refers to Desjardins General Insurance Inc. In Ontario and Alberta, Desjardins Insurance refers to Certas Direct Insurance Company, underwriter of automobile and property insurance.