Preparing Your Heating and Plumbing for 2019

Your household is full of complex systems that require constant updates and maintenance schedules. Without consistent care, these systems can break down with remarkable ease. As the New Year approaches, consider a few steps that can improve your home's systems without much effort on your part.

Adding Drain Strainers

One of the simplest tune-ups that you can perform around the home is adding drain strainers. These inexpensive gadgets are essentially formed mesh that fit into your kitchen drain. They capture food particles that can otherwise clog a drain.

There may be a garbage disposal attached to the kitchen sink, but that doesn't mean that a strainer won't help. Ideally, throw most food items in the trash instead of sending them down the drain.

Testing the Furnace

You may not use your furnace for several months out of the year — it sits stagnant otherwise. Before a truly cold day sets in, test the furnace. Turn it on, and listen to the components warming up. There should only be a slight hum to the activity.

If you don't feel comfortable with troubleshooting, we're happy to visit and assess the problem. Our team can turn on the furnace and immediately note any issues with the system. Loud sounds are often an indicator that a service procedure is necessary.

Looking for Leaks

When it comes to your pipes, visual observations are key. Take some time to look under each sink in the home. Document any unusual colors or moisture in the area.

Leaks can arise over time as gaskets and adhesives break down. Catching any of these issues early on is the best case scenario. A few drops of water in a kitchen cabinet is better than a huge puddle. Ask our professionals about patching services if you do find a leak.

Cleaning or Replacing the Filter

The furnace uses a filter in order to capture all of the particles flowing through the system and prevents clogging and inefficient operations. This filter does get dirty too, however. Replacing or cleaning it on a regular basis is critical to a well-maintained system.

Replace the filter when it gets dirty. To save money, add a reusable filter to the system. Cleaning this filter allows you to reuse it for a longer period of time.

Using the Boiling Water Trick

There's no need to pour expensive drain cleaners down the pipes. Each month, boil some water on the stove. Pour the water down your kitchen and bathroom drains. The heat clears out a lot of grease and particles that may be stuck on the pipe walls. Boiling water won't damage any part of the pipes either.

Using this monthly strategy will help you avoid any major clogs. Boiling water melts down a lot of items without using harmful chemicals.

Vacuuming Around the Furnace

Although you may have an enclosed furnace, it still sits idle and open to dust most of the year. Reduce the number of potential breakdowns each year by vacuuming the surfaces. Use a vacuum attachment to reach into the components' spaces.

Don't perform this chore when the system is on. Only vacuum areas that you can reach with ease. If you see dust in out-of-reach spaces, our professionals can perform the cleaning work for you.

Starting a New Habit

A great way to take care of the pipes is by starting a new habit in the kitchen. Any grease or fat created by your cooking processes should be poured into a container and then thrown in the trash. Don't pour liquid fats into the kitchen drain.

These fats may be liquid now, but they will congeal into a thick substance later on. The fat adheres to the pipes, which creates clogs as particles attached to it.

Cleaning out the Ducts

Take care of the furnace by paying attention to the ducts attached to it. These pathways allow the warm air to flow through them with relative efficiency. Dirty ducts are problematic, however. Obstacles in the ducts will reduce efficiency, which leads to increased energy usage.

The professionals can clean out the ducts as thoroughly as possible so the furnace has a chance to work as it's designed to do so. The house will feel warmer than ever before with these efforts.

Reseating Old Toilets

The water moving through the household isn't just limited to the pipes. The toilets may be prone to leaks too. Ideally, allow a professional to reseat them every few years. A wax ring under the toilet prevents water from leaking out onto the floor. A new ring will protect the home's flooring against serious, moisture damage.

Replacing the Control Panel

Replacing the entire furnace is an expensive endeavor. A clever way to update the system without spending too much money is by adding a new control panel to the setup. These panels connect right to the furnace. You should be able to control the temperature through the panel or a WiFi connection, depending on the panel's features. Many breakdowns are caused by old or faulty panels so updating your model is a smart, preventive-maintenance measure.

The team at Waldrop Plumbing – Heating – Air can assist you with all your plumbing and heating needs. Contact us to schedule an appointment today.