Plumbing Hacks

1. Unblock Your Toilet

Is your toilet blocked with toilet paper & you don't want to call a plumber? Here is a simple fix using just hot water.

Instructions:

  1. Stop the flow of water. With a simple clog, you can just remove the cover on the tank and disconnect the chain to keep the valve closed. You can also turn off the water at the valve at the back of the toilet.

  2. Fill a cup with hot water. The hotter the water, the faster this works.

  3. Pour the hot water into the toilet. The heat will help break down the clog.

  4. If hot water isn't working, try adding a bit of soap to break down the clog.

2. Unclog Your Sink

Drain

Clogged sink drains are very common & easy to fix in most cases. Here’s a quick DIY plumbing fix that can get your drain flowing freely again without the use of harsh chemicals.

Instructions:

  1. Carefully pour baking soda down the clogged drain 

  2. Immediately pour vinegar in drain

  3. Cover the drain immediately. The chemical reaction between the vinegar and baking soda helps loosen debris and food trapped in the drain to wash it away.

  4. After several minutes, remove the drain cover and pour hot water down the plumbing drain.

3. Combat Low Shower

Pressure

Frustrated by low water pressure from your shower head? 

The good news is it's an easy fix!

Instructions:

  1. Make sure the water is off then unscrew the shower head

  2. Remove the spray plate and soak in a descaling solution such as white vinegar for a few hours

  3. Reattach the plate

  4. Test out your new high pressure hose

4. Something Fell in the Toilet

We’ve all been there: you accidentally dropped a ring or small object down the sink or into the toilet. The good news is you don’t need to call a plumber or dismantle your plumbing to retrieve it.

Instructions:

  1. Remove the filter from a wet/dry vacuum. Add a crevice attachment to the hose if you are trying to suck up jewellery.

  2. Direct the hose into the toilet, going as far into the drain as you can before turning the vacuum on.

  3. You will likely feel or hear when the item is sucked up.

5. 4 Signs You Need New

Plumbing

It is important to remember that pipes and plumbing fixtures do not last forever. Eventually, the plumbing in your bathroom will need to be replaced. But since most of your pipes are hiding behind walls, you can't rely on the appearance of the pipes to determine when they need to be replaced. Instead, you should to keep an eye out for these 4 signs.

1. Reduced water pressure

2. Leaking

3. Rusty Water

4. Temperature regulation issues 

6. Fix Your Smelly Toilet

If your toilet always smells regardless of the beautifully fragrant candle & the citrus air-freshener, your not alone. We are here to help you solves the smell.

It's the Cistern:

The cistern stores the water in the back of the toilet. The water in the cistern can begin to become stagnant due to limited flushing or heat. When the toilet is flushed the smell then travels down into the bowl of the toilet causing the smell. The good news is there's an easy fix, simply pour 200mls of bleach into the cistern and then flush.

It's the Toilet Seat:

If there are males living in your household there's a good chance you have crystallised urine sitting underneath your toilet seat. Simply undo the wing nuts under the seat & gently lift up to remove. Using a damp cloth scrub the crystals to remove. Reattach the toilet seat and the smell is gone.

7. What to do when a

Pipe Bursts

Did a pipe recently burst inside your home? If so, you may be dealing with a lot of water damage.

Unfortunately, pipes can start leaking and eventually become so damaged that they burst. If this is the current situation you are dealing with, it is important to follow several steps to eliminate the water, fix the pipe, & keep your belongings safe.

1. Stop the flooding

If the pipe is no longer leaking water, you may want to get started with the process of removing water from the home. However, if it is still leaking water, it is best to contact a professional plumber to come out and help with the problem. 

2. Remove the water

If it is not too deep, you may want to consider using buckets and large containers. If you are dealing with a lot of water, using a wet/dry vacuum to suction up the water would be in your best interest.

3. Reduce the Moisture

 You want to make sure you are drying out each room quite thoroughly, consider opening up the windows and running fans on the highest speed possible to get rid of that moisture as quickly as you can.

4. Fix the pipe

After dealing with the water and moisture left behind from the leaking pipe, it is then a good time to contact the professional plumber to come back to your property to fix the pipe. Since it caused a major leak inside the home, there is a fairly good chance that the pipe is too damaged to repair.

8. Repair a Leaking Faucet

A leaking faucet is a common & annoying plumbing problem that happens when the inner components of the faucet wear out. Here’s how to replace worn washers, seals, and O-rings.

Instructions:

For a compression faucet: Remove the decorative cap on the faucet handle, remove the handle screw, and pull off the handle. Use a crescent wrench to remove the packing nut. Once you unscrew the stem, remove and replace the seat washer that’s held in place with a screw. Next, remove the stem from the packing nut and replace the O-ring that’s causing the leak.

For a ball-type faucet: With this type of faucet, a replacement kit with all-new parts is the best option. Remove the handle set screw and take off the handle. Use pliers to remove the cap and collar then a special tool in the kit to loosen the faucet cam. Remove the faucet cam, the cam washer, and the rotating ball. Use needle-nose pliers to remove the inlet seals and springs from the faucet body. Cut off the O-rings and coat the new ones in plumbing grease before rolling them on. Install the new springs, valve seats, and cam washers while reassembling the faucet.

9.Extend the Life of Your Hot Water Unit

Homeowners often want to get as many years as they can out of major appliances before replacement is necessary. Unfortunately, maintenance is often ignored until a major problem occurs.  If you're looking to get some extra years out of a hot water unit her are some tips for you!

1. Flush the sediment

The water that enters your home through your city's municipal water source can have sediment in it, even though the water is supposed to be treated before it reaches you. Homeowners often hear the sediment rather than see it in their water, because it can make loud sounds as it moved around the metal tank when the water is being heated.Repairing this problem is fairly simple. You'll need to drain the hot water from the tank, which will cause the sediment to flow out with the water. Before you flush out the tank, make sure you've turned off the tank's heating element to avoid causing damage to it.

2. Replace the Anode Rod

Inside your tank is an anode rod made with metal like magnesium and aluminium. This rod's purpose is to stop any corrosion from happening to the tank, because as long as the rod is intact, the rod will deteriorate rather than the exterior of the tank. A sign that your anode rode needs replacing is if you see any signs of rust on the exterior of the tank. If you do nothing to fix this problem, a hole will form in the tank and require the entire appliance to be replaced. Replacing the rod can give you some additional years before replacement is necessary.

10. 3 Sounds Your Toilet is Making & Why

Sure, flushing your toilet isn't exactly a silent process. However, if your toilet seems to be making strange noises nonstop, not only is this not normal, but it's also a good idea to get to the bottom of the problem.

1. Bubbling Noise

If your toilet is making a gurgling or bubbling noise, this could be an indication of a blocked vent. The vent is basically a trap like structure that helps the wastewater properly drain from your toilet. When the vent is blocked, not only will it make this type of noise, you will likely also experience draining issues at some point.

2. Random Flushing

Does it sound like your toilet randomly flushes? The sound you hear is a signal that the toilet is losing water. This type of sound isn't just annoying, but it can also lead to higher than expected water bills.

Toilets can lose water for several reasons, including a dirty flapper that no longer secures to the base, a worn flush valve, or even a leak under the toilet due to a bolt that is worn. 

3. Knocking Sounds

Another sound to look out for is a knocking sound. This sound is often an indication of an issue with your shut off valve. Just behind your toilet, fixed in the wall is a shut off valve. If for some reason, an obstruction forms, such as clogged debris, along the path from the toilet to the valve, you could hear this sound.

It is imperative that you address this issue because the obstruction could lead to a significant water leak behind the wall, leading to costly damage.

If Your toilet is making strange sounds have a licensed plumber take a look to find the source of the problem.

11. Can't Get My Toilet

Bowl Clean

Trying to clean your toilet bowl with a brush or cloth and you can't get it clean?

If the water coming into your house is harsh you might have had this problem. Here is how to remove those stains with just a few simple steps.

Instructions:

1. Get yourself some 2000 Grit Wet & Dry sandpaper.

2. Gentle scrub the marks in the toilet bowl with the sand paper.

3. Look at your new shiny toilet with amazement!

12. Hair Stuck in Drain

If you have hair stuck in your basin or shower drain we have a simple solution for you. 

Instructions:

1. Grab a cable tie & notch it every inch or so with a sharp kitchen knife.

2. Push the cable tie down into the drain, keeping hold of one end.

3. The hair will catch onto the sharp notches.

4. Slowly remove cable tie and place straight into rubbish bin.

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Mitchell Plumbing and Gas (Brisbane) Pty Ltd

QBCC Lic.1309694