Category: Home Ownership checklist

4 Preventive Maintenance Tips for Your Home’s Plumbing

Performing routine plumbing maintenance and upkeep tasks provided by Home Check by Amica™ can help prevent water damage to your home.

To help keep costly water-related damage and repairs at bay, it’s important to follow routine plumbing maintenance. Read our list below to get started on your own regular home checkups and download the Home Check by Amica™ app to receive timely reminders year-round.

1. Inspect Washing Machine Hoses and Connections for Issues

The washing machine is one of the most common appliances that cause home water damage.1 Once or twice a year, look for damage, rust or snags in the hoses that supply hot and cold water to your washer. For indoor use, a stainless-steel braided hose is recommended over reinforced rubber. Make sure to shut off water supply valves when not in use to reduce pressure.2

Over time, connections can loosen, causing leaks. If they aren’t detected and repaired quickly, water leaks can result in costly water damage throughout your house. Attach a flood-sensing solenoid, a type of electromagnet that can detect excess water flow, to your washer to help prevent leaks.3,4

2. Check the Hot Water Tank for Leaks

Your hot water tank is the other common household source of water damage.1 Make sure your tank is inspected regularly to look for leaks and save on your utility bill. If you leave it unchecked, it’s also possible that pressure buildup might cause it to burst.3

3. Examine Toilet Water Supply and Shut-Off Valve

Damaged toilet supply lines and shut-off valves (typically near the bottom of the toilet or wall) can cause water to seep into your bathroom floor, encouraging the growth of mold and mildew.3

Periodically, take a look at the metal supply lines and shut-off valves. Confirm the supply line is functioning properly and you can easily turn it off so you don’t run into an issue with overflowing.5 If the valves appear to be leaking or don’t turn easily, it’s a good idea to replace them, especially if they are gate valves, which feature a screw handle that moves an internal gate up and down to control the flow of water. These valves are more prone to corrosion than ball valves, which use a sphere as its internal mechanism.6

4. Clean Your Sink Drains Regularly

A backed-up drain can be one of the first signs of plumbing problems. Every week, pour a mixture of one cup of vinegar and half a cup of baking soda into your drains. Let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes. When it stops fizzing, pour about four cups of boiling water into the drain to flush out all the buildup.7

Despite your best routine care, some appliances eventually reach the end of their expected lifespan. Find out when they should be replaced.

  • What Causes Water Damage?, Roto-Rooter, 2019.
  • Prevent Leaks and Flooding by Choosing the Right Washing Machine Hose, The Spruce, 2019.
  • Monthly Home Check Schedule, Home Check by Amica™ App, 2019.
  • What Is a Solenoid Valve and How Does It Work?, SMC Pneumatics, 2019.
  • How to Fix a Toilet That’s Overflowing, SFGate, 2018.
  • Difference Between Gate Valves and Ball Valves, Commercial Industrial Supply, 2017.
  • 31 Secrets Your Plumber Won’t Tell You, Reader’s Digest, 2019.

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