5 Tips to Avoid Common Plumbing Problems

Tools needed- screw driver, crescent wrench, plunger and a toilet auger. (Nylon Tights)
Cartoon Plumbing Joke

1. Check all toilet connections to your newly installed toilet. Every bolt should be checked flush it a couple of times to make sure there are no leaks. Countless times we come to homeowners homes because there toilet is leaking. A simple spin of the screwdriver and elbow Braun could have saved many a service call. Tools needed for toilet maintenance screwdriver and crescent wrench. Be careful not to over tighten you can crack the porcelain.


2. Often times we get a call for tubs that are draining slowly. Fill your tub up with water and water stop in. remove the drain cover just under tub faucet, that is the waste and overflow be careful not to drop screws in drain. Wet a nice rag and stuff it in the waste and overflow remove water stop and begin to plunge, often times you can get your tub to start draining with this simple fifteen minute routine. The rag stops the air from traveling up the waste and overflow allowing the plunger to plunge the blockage instead of just air. Tool needed plunger and screwdriver.


3. Most recently over this past weekend I received a service call for a blocked laundry tub. It was blocked because there was nothing stopping the dirty water coming from the wash machine. Meaning the discharge from the wash machine should have a nylon sock tied around the discharge to catch fabric and lint. This way only water will be going down your drain. Especially for older homes.


4. This one is an important one. We are not asking you to disassemble the insides of your flood control, just open the manhole cover. Check to make sure the inside is dry. It will tell you everything is functioning the way it should be. Too many times I come to a home to find they have a blocked sewer or a burnt out pump. This simple routine once a month can save you from flooding. Nothing is easy about owning your own home, it takes heart and responsibility.


5. This one takes a little more guts. Every once in a while a clogged toilet is too tuff for a toilet plunger. Go buy a toilet auger and keep in your house. Its four feet long and breaks up any human waste. This simple and easy tool can be extremely resourceful and a nice money saver. It cost about fifty bucks for a decent one. And a typical charge for the service call is above that. After one use it pays for itself.



A Step-by-Step Guide to Installing a New Toilet

 Materials and Tools Needed:

  • Putty Knife
  • Adjustable Wrench
  • Level
  • Tape Measure
  • Sponge


First step to installing a new toilet is to remove your old one! The angle stop located directly under the toilet tank with a supply line attached to it. Make sure this supply line is shut off. You spin your angle stop knob to the right to tighten and then remove the supply line attached to the toilet tank you do this with a pair of channel locks spin to loosen.


Once the angle stop is shut off the next step is to remove all water from the toilet and tank. Flush the toilet until there is nothing left to flush. Then proceed to the bolts at the bottom of toilet. There is one on each side. They might even be covered with white caps. You are to take a crescent wrench to the bolts and loosen them till you can remove them. Once the bolts are removed proceed to pull the toilet up and off the bolts attached to closet collar (a part the toilet gets tightened to). Remove toilet to discharge.


Installing a new toilet



Once the toilet is removed check the collar and remove old wax ring(s), please use gloves because it is messy and dirty. Remove old toilet bolts install the new toilet bolts the same way you took them out.


Once the bolts are in place, place new jumbo wax ring on closet collar, directly in the middle. Pick up newly assembled toilet and place on top of toilet bolts and then sit on toilet till it works its way into the wax ring making a tight air free connection. Tighten the new bolts with proper washers. But do not tighten to tight because you can crack the porcelain.


Place the caps to cover bolts. You then need to reconnect the toilet supply line. Tighten tight to angle stop and hands tighten to toilet tank.


Your toilet is designed to use either 1.4 or 1.6 gallons of water per flush. Adjust the flush volume in the tank by adjusting the water level to the appropriate water line, the water lines are marked on the flush valve. To raise the water level pinch the C-clip and slide it up the float rod.Once complete turn on angle stop and enjoy your new toilet.


There is no need to hire a plumber or sewer expert to install a new toilet, but if you feel the need to have it done professionally to assure no mistakes are made, we are more than willing to help!

The North Coast Family