When you think of plumbing, do you just see it as a hidden and mysterious network of pipes and pumps that makes your toilets and sinks work? If so, then you are very unlikely to have a go at mauntaining or repairing the system. Plumbing is not actually that complicated, and there are many things that you can do yourself to maintain and repair your system. Read on to find out how.

On very cold winter nights, allow your faucets to trickle slightly, especially if your pipes are located in a crawlspace. The running water prevents the pipes from freezing as quickly as they would otherwise. You can catch the water and use it for other household needs to prevent wasting it.

Avoid using hard cleaners on your toilets, such as drop-in cleaner tabs in the tank. When these tabs are almost completely dissolved, what’s left of the tab gets washed into the bowl. This can then end up clogging the toilet’s port holes, preventing the toilet from flushing properly. It can take months for this debris to finish dissolving in those holes.

Some people have problems with their plumbing system in that the pipes sweat and drip condensation. You do not have to hire a plumber to take care of this nuisance. You can purchase self-adhesive drip tape from your local hardware store. This drip tape will insulate your “sweating” pipes which are dripping with moisture built up from condensation. To make sure the tape sticks firmly, dry the pipe thoroughly before applying the tape.

Have your pipes in your plumbing system frozen? You can skip the cost of hiring a plumber by using this method. First, open the faucet so steam produced by the thawing process can escape. Begin thawing close to the faucet, and move down the line as each section thaws out. Use a hair dryer or a heat lamp to warm along the pipe. Even though this method consumes quite a bit of time, it is safer than most other heating methods. Furthermore, it requires no cleanup.

Avoid using harsh chemicals to clear clogged drains by purchasing a hand-held manual auger. A drain auger is a one-time purchase as opposed to purchasing a new bottle every time a drain is clogged. This is especially helpful for people who deal with clogged drains often, such as people with long hair or kids who like to drop things down the drain.

Do not place items in the toilets that do not belong there. For example, if you are a female, do not throw away sanitary pads or tampons in your toilet. This could cause severe damage to your toilet that could require a plumber, or even worse, a whole new toilet!

It should not be necessary to call out a professional for every repair job. If you take your time and apply sensible advice, such as what you read here, you can successfully repair many of the common faults that develop. It may take a longer the first few times, but after a few successes you will pick up speed.