how to repair a leaky faucetIf you are a new homeowner, then there may be a bunch of home maintenance tasks that you have never had to take care of.

We have put together a guide to plumbing basics will help you solve many of the most common plumbing problems that homeowners face.

Be proactive in the care and maintenance of your plumbing system, and it will work properly and efficiently for years to come, saving you from costly future repairs and energy loss.

Leaky Faucet

A leaky faucet may not seem like a huge problem, but left unattended, it can lead to up to 3 gallons of water loss each week and high utility bills. One of the main reasons for a leaky faucet is because of worn parts. You can replace the parts that are worn or call a professional plumber to replace the faucet.

Low Water Pressure

Low water pressure coming from a faucet may mean the aerator is blocked by minerals or sediment. If you want to clean the aerator on a faucet, then it first needs to be removed. This can be done by using a pair of pliers and a towel or by hand. Soak the aerator in vinegar for a couple of hours or use a brush to remove any mineral deposits.

Bathroom Shower Head

One issue that can occur with the shower head in your bathroom is an uneven spray of water. This is an issue that often occurs when mineral deposits clog the holes of the shower head. You can easily clean a shower head by first unscrewing it by hand or using an adjustable wrench. Insert a small wire into each hole to remove any mineral deposits. Another option is to place the shower head in vinegar.

Garbage Disposal

Garbage disposal units in the kitchen may develop a foul odor at some point in time. Food that is stuck inside the disposal unit is the direct cause of the problem. The best way to fix this problem is to add ice cubes and a few rinds of lemon into the disposal. Turn it on and let it work for about 30 seconds. Add a small amount of dish soap while the disposal is still running. Turn off the unit and run cold water down the drain to wash away any debris.

Clogged Drain

The drains in your home often become clogged when there is a build up of debris or other material that accumulates over time. You can attempt to clear a drain by using baking soda and vinegar. Measure out at least one-half cup of baking soda and then pour it down the drain. You then need to add one-half cup of vinegar to create a reaction. Wait for the fizzing to stop and then run water down the drain. If you do not see any results, then a plumbers snake is needed to remove the clog. Do not use chemical to clean a drain unless there is no other alternative.

Running Toilet

Toilets in a bathroom can develop leaks that lead to the sounds of running water. One way to check this is to remove the lid of the tank and make sure water is not flowing into the overflow pipe. This problem can easily be fixed by adjusting the fill valve to set the level of the water. You need to set the water level at water mark on the overflow tube. Another reason for a running toilet is when the flapper in the tank fails to create a seal. You can check for a bad flapper by putting a couple drops of food coloring into the tank.

This post was written for Walker Sandford by Rachel:
Rachel is a blogger for Benjamin Franklin Plumbing that has a team of plumbers in Novato, CA specializing in common plumbing repair problems. For more tips you can follow Benjamin Franklin Plumbing @BFP_San_Rafael.
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