5 things you need to know about your home plumbing

5 things you need to know about your home plumbing

How to find your water leak

Checking your water usage regularly is important to help you identify any sudden, unexplained increases – like when you have visitors or when you water your garden more during hot weather. This could be a sign of a leak in your home plumbing, so it’s important to be vigilant. You can sign up for an online account or ask your water supplier to send you monthly statements so you can keep track of the water you’re using.

Noticing a drop in water pressure when you’re filling the bath or taking a shower could be a sign of a leak. You can check by turning off all your fixtures and then turning one back on. If the pressure is higher than it was, it’s probably a leak.

How to unclog your toilet

If you’re dealing with a clogged toilet and don’t have a plunger on hand, don’t worry – there are plenty of ways to clear the home plumbing blockage without one. You can try using common household items like a wire hanger or a plunger, or you can try more unconventional methods like boiling water or using a vacuum cleaner. Whichever method you choose, make sure you’re careful and take precautionary measures to avoid making the situation worse.

Baking soda – This simple trick could leave you with a free-flowing toilet – all from the products you already have lying around. Pour one cup of baking soda and two cups of vinegar into your toilet and allow it to fizz for around 30 minutes. Pour hot water into the bowl and flush the chain. 

Hot water – Fill a bucket with hot water – don’t use boiling water as this could crack the porcelain. Pour your bucket of water into the toilet from around your waist height, as this will cause a force of water that could be successful in unclogging your toilet. 

How to bleed your radiators

Have you turned your heating on only to find your radiators aren’t working as they should? It might be time to bleed them through to get the most from your heating. Start by turning off the heating, as you shouldn’t complete this task when it’s on – the water will be too hot and could cause burns. Use your radiator key to turn the valve found at the top of your radiator. You should hear the hissing sound of the air escaping. Take care in case any water comes out. 

Once the hissing stops and only water is draining out, quickly tighten the valve to stop too much water from escaping. Turn your heating system back on and check your boiler pressure. If the pressure is too low, you will need to top it up. Check your radiator is heating up evenly. If it is – you fixed the problem! 

How to locate and turn your stop cock off

Your stopcock, also known as a stop valve and stop tap, can be found inside your home and is often located close to where the main water pipe enters your house. This is often under the kitchen sink, but you may also find it in the airing cupboard, under your staircase, near the front door or in a garage or utility room. If you live in a flat, you may have a shared stopcock that will be close to the front door and an additional valve within your home. 

To turn off your stopcock, turn the valve clockwise. It may take a few turns to stop the water from coming out, and you will get to a point where you are unable to turn the valve any further. Don’t use unnecessary force to stop the valve, as you could break it. You should also be aware that even if your home plumbing is off, you may have some excess water left in your pipes that will come out of the tap. 

How to fix a leaky tap 

It’s important to fix a leaky tap, as failure to do so could cause you serious problems further down the line. To fix your leaky tap at home, you will need to cut off your water supply using the instructions above. Remove your tap handle – often by lifting the cover and removing the screw before unscrewing the tap mechanism, which will allow you access to the washer. Remove the washer and replace it before screwing the tap mechanism back on and checking the tap is in good working condition. We recommend checking the tap parts before putting it all back together, as a leaky tap could damage the parts, and they will require replacing. 

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Contact Three Counties for your home plumbing needs

Our homes rely on water coming in for everyday use – whether that’s to have a bath, do the washing up or wash our clothes. As long as the water is contained in an appliance or a pipe, that’s fine. But when water goes where it shouldn’t, it can fast become a huge enemy that costs us not just money but time, possessions and furnishings. Home plumbing leaks and issues are common in every home, and it’s important that they are dealt with quickly and effectively. If you are struggling to deal with a plumbing issue in your home, get in touch with Three Counties Plumbing and Heating today. 

With over 30 years of experience in the plumbing industry, there isn’t much Three Counties Plumbing and Heating cannot support. We look forward to helping you with your plumbing issues soon.


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