Plumbing 101 for Homeowners

Plumbing System Basics Households Need to Know

While many homeowners might think they know about their plumbing system, they might not know as much as they need to. They use their plumbing fixtures daily, like their faucets and shower heads, but they might not know how to recognize the signs of plumbing problems that can lead to significant water damage, high water bills, and plumbing emergencies. 

To avoid these problems, plumbers recommend that homeowners understand some information about their plumbing, like how to identify problems in their plumbing system, how they can save on water costs, and why it’s essential to schedule plumbing maintenance services. 

Save Water With Plumbing Fixtures

tubPlumbing fixtures like faucets, showerheads, and toilets are essential to households. Family members use these fixtures daily and rely on them for hygiene. However, these fixtures can result in wasted water and increased water bills if they start to leak. Any leaks should be fixed quickly to save money, but there is more that can be done to save on water costs. 

Homeowners can save on their water use by replacing their old and inefficient plumbing fixtures with new, water-efficient fixtures. Some of these water-saving devices include:

  • Low-flow, water-saving toilets come in many different varieties, but all use less water per flush than standard toilets. 
  • Dual-flush toilets save water by providing two different flushing options depending on whether the waste is liquid or solid to conserve water.
  • Water-saving, low-flow showerheads use less water while still providing comfortable water pressure. 
  • Faucet aerators are installed in faucets to mix air with the water to reduce water usage without sacrificing water pressure. 

Signs Indicating a Plumbing Problem

billPlumbing problems can result in significant water damage, high utility bills, and costly repairs for households. From clogs and leaks to malfunctioning water heaters, many issues can occur in plumbing systems, and it’s important for homeowners to catch them early to mitigate their effects.

Some common symptoms that can indicate a problem with the plumbing include:

  • Visible leaks, puddles of water, or water damage signal a leak in the plumbing
  • A spike in the water bills can point to a leak somewhere in the plumbing system 
  • Slow-draining sinks or bathtubs can indicate a clog or blockage
  • Clogged toilets can indicate a blockage in the toilet trap or in the sewer line 
  • Low water pressure can be due to a blockage or a leak 
  • Foul odors from the drains or toilets can indicate an issue with the sewer line 
  • Running toilets can be due to a faulty flapper valve 
  • Discolored water can indicate there is corrosion or rust in the pipes or water heater 

The Importance of Plumbing Maintenance

One crucial thing for homeowners to remember is to schedule routine plumbing maintenance services. These visits can help plumbers identify and repair minor issues before they get larger, helping households avoid plumbing emergencies. Maintenance can also save homeowners money and extend the life expectancy of their plumbing. 

During maintenance appointments, plumbers will perform an inspection of the system, including performing the following tasks:

  • Inspect the faucets, showerheads, toilets, and other fixtures for damage, leaks, or dripping.
  • Examine the sink, shower, and bathtub drains for clogs. If any blockages are present, plumbers will remove the buildup. 
  • Check the water pressure coming from the plumbing fixtures. 
  • Inspect the pipes for signs of leaks or damage.
  • Examine the water heater to ensure it’s operating correctly, and check for signs of corrosion.
  • Drain and flush the water heater and check the anode rod.

About Patriot Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc.

Patriot Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc. is a plumbing, heating, air conditioning, and electrical company serving Wenatchee and the surrounding areas. They offer fast, tidy service, comprehensive diagnosis, and financing. Call them today for plumbing services in Wenatchee, WA.

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3 Steps To Avoid Scary Plumbing Emergencies This Fall

Don’t Be Haunted by a Plumbing Emergency 

Plumbing is central to a comfortable home. The shower, toilet, dishwasher, and laundry all rely on a sound plumbing system. A burst pipe or malfunctioning system could be a homeowner’s worst nightmare. As the weather turns colder, it’s important to take a few steps to avoid any costly plumbing emergencies. 

It may seem like a home’s plumbing system is working flawlessly, but it’s still important to maintain regular upkeep to avoid any disasters. Here are three steps to avoid costly plumbing emergencies. 

Keep Gutters Debris Free


It’s not the most fun housekeeping job around, but it is very important for regular upkeep. After any relatively big wind or rainstorm, homeowners should take a look at their gutters and make sure no leaves or debris are present. It is absolutely imperative to clean gutters after leaves fall and before the first snowfall if a homeowner lives in a cold climate. If homeowners neglect this task, it can lead to rotten boards, peeling paint, or larger plumbing-related issues. 

If a homeowner opts to do it themselves, the best way to clean the gutters is grabbing a ladder, a garden trowel to scoop the debris out, and some gloves. It may be tedious and unpleasant, but the homeowner needs to make sure all parts of the gutters are cleared out and hosed down when the cleaning is completed. 

Protect Your Pipes From the Cold

Oftentimes, homeowners will talk about keeping the heat at a certain temperature to avoid frozen pipes during the winter. This is true, but insulating pipes can assist in preventing frozen pipes. This is a popular tactic for homeowners with pipes in the attic, basement, or anywhere that is otherwise less insulated; however, it can assist pipes anywhere throughout the house.


The most popular type of pipe insulation is foam rubber or fiberglass sleeves. This insulation helps the pipe stay closer to the temperature of the water and not the air around the pipe, but it will not completely prevent frozen pipes. When pipes freeze, they expand and put pressure on the pipes, which can lead to a burst and a hefty bill from the plumber or expensive renovation costs.  

Remember Routine Drain Cleaning 

Another important thing for homeowners to consider is how often they get their pipes cleaned. It’s recommended that a professional clean a homeowner’s pipes every year to prevent future issues and enjoy the benefits. A clean drain means fewer bad odors, a longer drain life, and faster draining.

If pipes aren’t cleaned frequently, bigger and more expensive issues may arise. A professional can monitor the age of the pipes during their regular cleanings, ensure no pipes overflow, and make sure no pipes get blocked from backup. It’s crucial for homeowners to have a reliable, local plumber to trust with regular maintenance.  

About Patriot Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc.

Patriot Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc. is a reliable Wenatchee, WA emergency plumbing company. They are available for 24-hour service and can help homeowners limit damage and restore functionality to their homes. Contact them today to learn more about emergency prevention and care.

The Essential Guide to Eco-Friendly Plumbing Solutions For Your House

How to go Green With Your Home’s Plumbing

If you’re wondering what you can do around the house to help support the planet, or perhaps leave a smaller carbon footprint with your home, then don’t forget to take a look at your plumbing system. Nowadays there are a lot of eco-friendly plumbing options available for those people who want to be greener.

The Right Pipes Matter to The Environment

If you’re replacing pipes in your home, there are some good and bad choices you can make to help your home be more eco-friendly. Many pipe materials have pros and cons so it’s important to educate yourself on the following:

  • water pipesCopper pipes are readily and easily recyclable. So much so that upwards of 80% of the copper piping in use today has been recycled at one point or another. Copper pipes don’t require solvent-based adhesives, which can be toxic to people and the environment.
  • Iron pipes are fantastic because they’re made from 100% recycled material. No mining needed! And like copper pipes, they don’t need toxic, solvent-based adhesives and are also recyclable. But also, like copper, they will corrode faster than plastic, which lessens their lifespan and can pollute the environment.
  • PVC Pipes are common plastic pipes that are really cheap to produce and have a really long lifespan. But because they can’t be recycled, they end up in landfills. They require toxic, solvent-based adhesives to join and producing them emits harmful toxins into the environment
  • PEX pipes, or Cross-Linked Polyethylene Tubing, is plastic-like PVC but doesn’t use toxic adhesives. They’re also quieter than PVC or copper and have a long lifespan. But as of right now they can’t be recycled.

Familiarizing yourself with the different piping materials available will help you make the best choice for your home and the planet.

Focus on Bathroom Plumbing

The bathroom uses a lot of water and is often the place where you should focus your efforts if you’re trying to make your plumbing, and home, greener.

Taking fewer baths and showers per week will not only save more water, but it can also save you money on your monthly water bill. To save even more cash consider installing a low flow toilet which uses less water per flush.

bathroom plumbing

Even better: choose a dual flush toilet. These low flow toilets have two flushing options, one for solid waste and one for liquid, allowing the toilet to use more or less water, as needed.

If you’ve lived with a small leak from your sink faucet, now’s the time to break out the DIY plumbing skills or call your local plumber to fix the issue. Even a few drips a day can add up to a lot of wasted water over the lifetime of the faucet.

Don’t Forget to Go Outside

outdoor plumbingWhile converting your home to more green plumbing alternatives, don’t forget to examine your outdoor plumbing systems to see what can be done outside.

If you live in an area where you find yourself having to constantly water your lawn to keep it thriving, consider reseeding with a lawn type that works better with less water or consider replacing your lawn entirely with plants and rocks that require little watering.

If you’re a gardener, rain barrels can be a huge lifesaver when it comes to watering your plants. The rain provides free water, stored for whenever you need to use it, saving you money and the planet at the same time.

Check for any small leaks, especially around outdoor faucets, and consider adding Teflon tape to hose connectors to eliminate any leaking at the connection. And if you have a pool, use a solar cover to help heat it and prevent evaporation, limiting how often you have to add more water. Any and all of these steps can help your home become the eco-friendly residence you’re looking for.

Contact Patriot Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc.

Patriot Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Inc. serves the Wenatchee, WA area for all your home needs. They’re local experts who offer flat-rate pricing, 24/7 live answer for emergencies, and on-time arrival. Don’t forget to check out their online discount for new customers or become a VIP member for even more savings.