You have probably heard of some tried-and-true plumbing tricks for common household problems. Maybe you have successfully used a toilet plunger to unclog your kitchen disposal after a hearty Thanksgiving meal or used the vacuum attachment to retrieve those pesky items your children like to throw down the toilet. However, there are some common misconceptions that you should be aware of before it’s too late. Read on to debunk and solve some of Warner’s most common plumbing myths:
Myth: Lemons clean your garbage disposal.
Fact: They only make it smell better, and the tough lemon peel can actually damage your disposal if the blades are not quick and sharp enough. For a speedy cleaning of your disposal, throw in ice cubes or eggshells and run it. If you are thoroughly cleaning your kitchen’s garbage disposal, you should unplug the disposal from the power source then spray a cleaning agent that contains milder soap and chemicals mixed with water. After that has settled for a few minutes, take a sponge to the metal for an easy clean.
Myth: A leaky faucet is not a big deal.
Fact: It actually is. Leaky faucets amount to wasting 1 trillion gallons of water nationwide, which does not help the environment. Plus drip after drip leads to a higher water and electric bill in the long run. Leaks also lead to stains on your plumbing fixtures as well as wear out the faucet. To prevent leaks, make sure you turn the faucet knob all the way after use. If this does not solve the problem, invest in a water softening system or call a professional to inspect your pipes.
Myth: You can put anything down your disposal as long as you run the water, too.
Fact: Foods with thick exteriors like banana and orange peels should not be put down the drain. It can damage your disposal, costing you money in repairs. Try breaking down the food and mixing it with water beforehand then put it through the disposal. You can always just toss it in the trash instead, or help the environment by investing in a food composite.
Myth: If you put a brick in the back of your toilet tank, it will save water.
Fact: This is not true. Bricks deteriorate over time and can cause your flapper, amongst other fixtures in your tank, to break. It can also have the opposite effect by displacing too much water, which means you have to flush twice, which waste more water and money over time. Instead of putting a brick there, partially fill a plastic gallon carton (such as milk or juice containers) with sand, gravel or pebbles. If more weight is needed, fill the rest of the carton with water. Place this gallon container in the back of your tank to save your family 350 gallons of water every month, significantly decreasing your bill.
Myth: As long as food is going down, my disposal is not damaged.
Fact: This is a common misconception. Just because waste is going down your disposal does not mean there is not a problem. Your food may be remaining in the discharge pipe or if you notice that you have a slow moving disposal, then it could be the beginnings of a serious clog. Stop usage if you notice this occurring and contact a specialist to examine your drain.
Now you are aware that it’s not worth putting lemons down the drain for their scent, and it’s better to skip out on the brick in the toilet tank. All of these solutions should save you money on bills and repairs in the long run. If you have any other plumbing concerns that we haven’t addressed, Warner Service would be happy to answer your questions.