If your plumbing has problems, you might think it is an emergency. But there are certain things you can do to remedy the situation until it is time for the professionals to take over.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t call a certified plumbing professional in any situation. If the plumbing problem is bad enough, you will need a plumber to offer a permanent fix to it. However, some plumbing problems can be fixed temporarily by exercising a few simple tricks. These tips and tricks will be important to know if it is the holidays and there are no plumbers available to call. Alternatively, contact a handyman Perth Men Behaving Handy for assistance.
Unblocking a Blocked Toilet
If you have a plethora of houseguests on Christmas and they stuff your toilet with toilet paper, then you are going to have a blocked toilet. This will spell trouble on Christmas Day with several people needing to use the toilet. Fortunately, you can save yourself from disaster by following some simple advice.
First, evaluate the problem closely. Is the toilet overflowing? If so, you need to get towels, gloves, and a mop and bucket to clean the mess. Any area of your bathroom that’s been exposed to toilet water must be disinfected and cleaned thoroughly.
Next, do you have a blocked toilet? Check to see if the water level in the toilet bowl has decreased. It may not be draining at all or it is draining slowly. Either way, there is blockage there.
Using a Plunge
You need a minimum of 2 plungers in your home. One plunger for the toilet and another for the sink. There are special plungers for each too.
Most people are familiar with the standard cup plunger. This is actually the sink plunger, even though most people use it for the toilet too. However, a true toilet plunger has a rubber extension on the bottom of it. This makes the suction better when you use it in the toilet. Never use the same plunger for the toilet and sink because that is nasty.
Here is how to unlock a toilet with a toilet plunger:
1) Plunge the toilet gently with the plunger. Avoid getting too aggressive with it. This bell-shaped plunger has air inside of it. If you push too hard with it, the air will come out fast from the seal. This will cause toilet water to splash in your face.
2) Repeat the plunging about 15 to 20 times. This is about how many you need to unblock the toilet. You can adjust your plunging pace too each time. But again, not too hard.
3) The toilet bowl should always have enough water to cover the plunger. If it doesn’t, it won’t be effective.
How to Clear a Blocked Toilet Without a Toilet Plunger
If you believe toilet paper is blocking your toilet, you can use regular shampoo or liquid dishwashing detergent mixed with hot water to clear out the blockage. This can’t work on an overflowing toilet, though. Otherwise, start by pouring the liquid shampoo or detergent into the toilet bowl. Now you’ll want to pour some hot water into the toilet bowl. Leave it for 5 minutes. The toilet paper in the toilet should be getting broken down by the solution you put in there. Next, use a wire coat hanger to help clear away any remnants of the toilet paper. Do this process a few times if there is a lot of blockage. If it still remains blocked, you may need a professional to look at it. Either that or buy a toilet plunger. The latter is the cheaper option.
Clearing a Blocked Drain in the Kitchen
If you have a habit of pouring cooking grease or coffee grounds into your kitchen sink, the drain will eventually get blocked by all this debris. The worst time this could happen is at Christmas. Usually, people tend to put all sorts of things down their drain during the holidays. With all the people that you’re probably cooking for, this can spell trouble if you have a clogged drain already. Take it upon yourself to perform some early maintenance on your drain prior to the Christmas festivities.
Don’t use toxic or chemical-based cleaners in your sink. It is better to use ½ cup of salt and 1 cup of bicarb soda in the drain. Leave it there until the next morning and then, boil 2 cups of water and pour it into the drain. It should get cleaned out thoroughly now. Bicarb soda has the ability to absorb debris and clean the drain. If there is grease, the boiling water will melt it. The salt assists in washing the debris down more.
If you have a blocked drain during your Christmas festivities, first try to use a plunger. If you don’t have one, pour dishwashing detergent down the drain in the kitchen. Then pour boiling water afterward. This will clear away the grease, fat, or oil that is down there. If there is a lot of food waste that is blocking the drain, use a hooked coat hanger to rip the food pieces apart.
Temporarily Fixing a Water Pipe That Burst
If your water pipe bursts, it is safe to say that you’ll be very unhappy. Since it is a holiday, you won’t be able to call a plumber or go to the hardware store because all these businesses are closed. Fortunately, there are a few tricks you can try yourself to fix the problem.
Copper Pipe Trick
1) Turn the water main off. Locate the leak.
2) If the hole is small, take a sharp pencil and stick it into the hole. Break the pencil in half and seal the hole with one of the halves. Cover the seal with duct tape. Contact a plumber when the holidays are over.
3) If you have a big hole, locate an inner tube or another piece of rubber and place it over the pipe so that the hole is covered. Secure the rubber with 2 little wooden blocks or a C-clamp. A garden hose piece can work too.
PVC Pipe Trick
1) Turn the water main off. Locate the leak.
2) In a pipe that is not pressurized, a small leak can be temporarily remedied by wrapping duct tape over it. This should last for a few days.
Now that you know how to fix blocked pipes and drains on a temporary basis at best, you don’t need to worry about your holidays being ruined by these problems ever again. Just be sure to stock up on the do-it-yourself items that were mentioned here.