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When the economy takes a downturn, it’s a good idea to go over your household budget to see where you can cut some expenses. Right now people all over LA are struggling with bills, lost income, and financial worries about the future. However, people often overlook ways they can save money just by making simple changes or plumbing repairs in their home. If you’re trying to tighten up your budget, review these expert repair tips to see if any of them could help your household save some hard-earned cash.
Stop a Leaky Faucet
If your kitchen sink isn’t turning off all the way, or if your bathroom sink keeps you up at night with constant dripping, it’s not just an annoying nuisance – that’s extra cash just flowing down your drain. Go around the house and make sure that all your taps are turned off all the way. If some of them continue to leak even after the tap is shut off, they need to be repaired or replaced. Make sure to check under sinks also to spot any other leaks in need of a plumbing repair.
Check for Toilet Leaks
If your water bill seems higher than it should be, you could have a stealth toilet leak. These types of leaks often fly under the radar unless you know how to find them. If you suspect your toilet may be leaking, add a few drops of food coloring to your toilet tank. Set a timer for 30 minutes, then check the bowl when the timer goes off. If there’s color in the bowl, it’s likely you have a leak. Fortunately, a quick call to your plumber is all it takes to score a cost-saving plumbing repair. Your plumber is also your friend if your toilet is not flushing properly. If you need to jiggle the handle or press it down extra-hard in order to get results, this can be a warning that you have some worn-out parts that need to be replaced.
Observe Your Water Meter
If you’ve already checked your toilet and faucet but still suspect a water leak, it’s time to take a look at your water meter. If you don’t know where it is, it typically runs from the outside water main line to a small box located somewhere on the outside of your home. Once you find it, check the area carefully for any leaks. Then, make sure no other members of your household are using the water (and make sure the dishwasher and washing machine aren’t running). Carefully observe the water meter to see if it is turning even when no water should be flowing in your home. If it is, you may have a leak. However, even if you don’t know where the problem is, a plumber can come out and perform an inspection to recommend any needed plumbing repairs to fix the leak and save you money on your water bill.
Go Low-Flow for Savings
One way to quickly reduce your water and sewer bill is to install low-flow showerheads. It’s easy to lose track of time when enjoying a relaxing hot shower, but they are usually one of the biggest water-wasters for a LA household. To save on your water bill, Energy.gov recommends using showerheads with flow rates of less than 2.5 gallons per minute. If you have any fixtures that predate 1992, they probably have a flow rate of at least 5.5 gallons per minute. Replacing them is a quick and easy plumbing repair that will save you cash in the long run. If you already have low-flow showerheads, consider other upgrades like high-efficiency toilets or updated faucets to further reduce your water usage and spend even less on your monthly water bill.
Prevent Clogs with Safe Grease Disposal
Like many Marrero, LA residents, we enjoy making fried favorites like beignets or shrimp for po’boys in our home kitchens. However, once the meal is over, a good plumber knows it’s a mistake to pour that cooking grease down a sink or toilet. Of course, you can’t pour hot grease in your garbage can either, but if you pour it down a drain it will eventually solidify and cause a clog, leading to the need for a big plumbing repair later. Avoid this problem by pouring your grease in a heat-resistant container until it cools, and then scraping the cooled fat into the garbage. You can also help prevent clogs by periodically cleaning drains with a simple mixture of baking soda, water, and vinegar in a 1:1:1 ratio in order to help keep them running freely.
Check Exterior Gutters and Drains
Spring is an excellent time to get outside and check downspouts, gutters, and drains to make sure all of them are functioning properly. Marrero, LA gets a lot of rain in the spring, and if those gutters and drains are clogged or dirty this can cause problems with the way water drains away from your home’s foundation, potentially causing expensive problems down the road. A timely gutter or drain cleaning is a simple plumbing repair that can save lots of money in the future.
Replace Your Water Heater
If it’s been more than ten years since you’ve replaced your water heater, you could have an inefficient model that is using lots of energy, resulting in bigger bills. Replacing it with a newer model can save lots of money on utility bills. However, since this is a serious plumbing repair, only a licensed and experienced plumbing professional should take on this job. Don’t forget to check your water heater temperature – it should be set no higher than 120 degrees in order to save energy and prevent burns.
No matter if you have a large or small plumbing repair, the experts at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of New Orleans are here to assist local residents. Give us a call today to see how we can help you with any of these money-saving tips.