How to Maintain Old Plumbing

February 18, 2017 3:10 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Toilets, sinks, showers and outdoor faucets—all these home fixtures are connected to a shared water source. So to prevent big problems down the line, consider the following advice from a professional plumbing contractor in Colorado Springs, CO for maintaining old plumbing, as well as get a rundown of the most common types of materials used in older drain and sewer lines.

Old clay drain lines

If you live in an historic home or building, then your sewer and drain lines are likely made of clay or cast iron—that is, unless they’ve been updated. Like anything else that is a part of or connected to your house, you are responsible for maintaining the drainpipes that run from your home to the city sewer line. For residents on septic systems, you’re responsible for the entire system, since your pipes don’t connect to a shared sewer main. But although both clay and iron are strong materials, they do have an underground enemy: tree roots.

You might be wondering how you can keep roots from invading pipes, tearing in through pipe seams and weak spots. As much as we hate to say it, one answer is to remove the trees around your property that are already a problem or that will likely cause problems—especially those with big, invasive root systems.

Galvanized pipes

In some older residential homes, it is not unusual for galvanized pipes to have been installed by the original builders. Older galvanized drainpipes will begin to break down from many years of use, which can cause all sorts of problems. First, these lines will eventually become fragile from rust formation and the buildup of other ground and water contaminants; the water quality will be deemed unhealthy. Unfortunately, since galvanized piping is known for deteriorating and totally breaking apart, such conditions will only make matters worse.

Signs that your home’s galvanized pipes are deteriorating in the walls or ground include low water pressure that does not get better, terrible tasting drinking water and your laundry changing color. If you have hard water, that also contributes to issues with galvanized pipes.

What you can do

Aside from reduced water quality, other concerns about old plumbing range from leaks that cause basement flooding and house-wide wood rot to drain backups and repair expenses. But there are a few things you can do to prevent problems:

  • Get drains cleaned: Hire a professional plumbing company to thoroughly clean your sewer pipes and drains—hydro jetting will wash away clogs and sediment buildup for smoother water flow.
  • Let a camera check it out: Whether you are having drain issues or your pipes are older, consider letting a pro use a drain camera scope to check the condition of your sewer lines.
  • Invest in new plumbing: Even if you are not experiencing major plumbing problems, replacing very old lines with modern materials can meet today’s plumbing needs and even add value to your home.

To speak with a professional plumbing contractor in Colorado Springs, CO, call the experienced plumbing team at Affordable Rooter today!

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