A lot of homeowners believe themselves above regular plumbing maintenance—by which we mean they subscribe to one of three reasons for avoiding it: they want to save money, they forget, or they deem it unnecessary. However, getting a licensed professional to check your house’s pipes and plumbing a couple of times a year is something that should be mandatory, not optional. There are dozens of benefits to doing so and very little drawbacks overall.
If you want to know the kind of damage you can stack up by not getting your pipes checked regularly, here are five big ones:
The money you “save” by skipping yearly or quarterly plumbing maintenance will end up going to costly repairs, replacements, and your monthly utility bill. Every leaky faucet, every pound of excess water pressure, and every bang, clang, or rattle of your pipes is another couple dollars added to your water bill. It also adds to the risk of creating serious, near-irreparable plumbing problems that wouldn’t have been as extensive—or as costly—if it had been repaired two or three months ago.
The longer you leave the wounds to fester, the higher the risk of infection setting in. This is true for plumbing as well. If you don’t address issues ASAP, you may end up needing to amputate when a simple bandage applied a month earlier would have been enough.
Mitigate Time-Consuming Replacements
This is related to the first point: cost. If it gets to the point where your pipes or appliances need to be replaced, you’re not just wasting money—you’re wasting time. Say that the pipes in your basement crack, leading to minor flooding. The pipes are beyond repair at that point. To stop the flooding, you’ll need to purchase new pipes and get them installed.
This isn’t as simple as buying a replacement table or chair. You’ll need to know the type of plumbing you’re purchasing (so that the new pipes fit with the old) and get a licensed professional to do the actual installation. You’ll also need to find a licensed plumber in your area, set an appointment, and shut off the main water source during installation.
Long story short; it’s a tedious process that could have been avoided if the cracks had been addressed sooner.
Improve Air Quality
This may seem like an odd thing to include regarding plumbing, but what most homeowners don’t know is that plumbing directly affects your home’s indoor air quality. Cracked pipes, pressure issues, valve problems—all of these can lead to water leaks which, when left unattended, create a very attractive breeding ground for mold, mildew, and bacteria.
As you can imagine, none of these factors make for very good (or clean) air quality. Regular plumbing maintenance catches potential plumbing issues before they cause water leaks … and inevitable mold.
Keep Water Quality Clean
As with air quality, the state of your plumbing affects your water quality. Even if your water isn’t potable, you know it’s clean and filtered to use for acts of hygiene i.e. taking a bath, washing clothes, brushing your teeth. Plumbing maintenance on your pipes extends their lifespan and keeps them clean, which in turn ensures the water you’re pouring over your body and into your mouth is free from rust or lead.
Avoid Potential Disasters
Earlier, we mentioned that spontaneous flooding due to burst pipes is entirely possible. This isn’t an exaggeration either; many homes in the U.S. experience minor indoor flooding due to faulty plumbing. And flooding isn’t the only potential disaster you face due to plumbing problems. Backed-up sewage disposal, overflowing toilets, contaminated water, water heater malfunction, and water shortage are just some examples of indoor catastrophes that could hit your home.
To mitigate risk and avoid inciting such issues, invest in regular plumbing maintenance. Even a general home checkup once or twice a year is more than enough to ensure your pipes, faucets, and plumbing are in perfect working order.