The Seattle winter rains are on their way, bringing almost daily drizzle and the occasional heavy downpour. As experienced homeowners know, some preventative drain cleaning can save you from having a flooded basement later on. Here’s an easy list of drains to clean around your property for a worry-free rainy season.
While the city keeps the street drains clear, the ones at the bottom of your driveway are your responsibility. Pull any weeds growing around the grate and clear away debris that prevents water from flowing into the drain. If you can see silt building up below the grate you may need to schedule a more extensive drain cleaning.
A clogged gutter can cause water to run straight down the stem wall into the basement or foundation. First, check if any birds or rodents have taken up residence over the summer. Next, use a power washer to remove built up leaves and dirt from your gutters. Finally, check that your downspout is still properly attached and that water drains away from your foundation and towards the street. Adding a screen or gutter helmet can help prevent future buildup, or nesting, inside the downspout itself.
With the hilly Seattle terrain, many houses have garages at the bottom of a slope from the street. This means the drain in front of your garage doors must work properly to prevent water from flowing straight into your home. After removing debris, run your garden hose for 20 minutes and check that water is being directed away from the house. Also, be sure to check other outside drains and floor drains to be sure the water is not be re-directed to somewhere other than the street or storm system. If you notice puddles forming near the foundation, you may want to contact a professional plumber to discuss ways to improve drainage.
If any of your drains are not functioning properly, give Best Plumbing a call at (206) 785-2551 to schedule a professional drainage checkup. We serve the greater Seattle area and the East Side. Find more great plumbing tips on our Youtube channel!
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Chances are, sooner or later, you’ll have to deal with a slow-running or completely blocked drain somewhere in your Seattle home. When the time comes, many homeowners turn to the internet for solutions — however, sources are rife with drain cleaning myths and following the wrong advice could lead to a much bigger problem. The experts at Best Plumbing are here to help! Keep reading to discover some of the most common drain cleaning myths and how seemingly simple solutions could backfire.
It’s true that partial drain clogs can often be solved with a plunger or drain-snake. However, for people who don’t know their way around plumbing tools, attempting a DIY solution could be a serious mistake. Not only are home remedies often ineffective, but they can also cause even more damage. Overdoing it with an auger or trying a natural “drain cleaning” formula found online can worsen the clog or even harm your pipes — leading to expensive repairs down the line. If you’ve got a drain clog that needs to be dealt with and you know what you’re doing, play it safe and call a professional. Good plumbers are always happy to teach you the proper way to use a plunger!
Chemical drain cleaners may seem like an attractive solution – they’re simple, cheap, affordable, and easy to use. While drain cleaners may work on minor clogs, they can also disguise serious issues with your plumbing. For example, your pipes might be clogging because there’s a crack in the line that’s allowing dirt and roots to infiltrate your pipe. Moreover, the corrosive chemicals used by these products don’t always play nice with older pipe materials often found in Seattle homes. Finally, chemical drain cleaners can also be extremely dangerous for homes with children and small pets.
So your drain isn’t clogged, it’s just taking longer than it used to. No big deal, right? A lot of homeowners choose to ignore slow-flowing drains as a minor inconvenience rather than dealing with them immediately. However, even if you are dealing with a minor blockage, it will only get worse with time. It’s best to tackle this problem before it gets bigger. Plumbing requires maintenance, and dealing with a slow-flowing drain is an important step in keeping things running smoothly.
Find your local Seattle plumbing expert with Best Plumbing! We’ve been serving the Puget Sound area for 50 years. From minor concerns to emergency plumbing servings, we’re here to help 24/7. Give us a call, visit our website for more information, or check out our other blogs and YouTube channel for helpful plumbing tips!
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Your pipes are bound to get clogged at some point. While it often takes us by surprise, the truth is that there are generally warning signs that a clog is in the work. Here’s a quick guide to monitoring the state of your drains (and when it might be time to call in the professional to get them cleaned). Keep reading to learn more from Best Plumbing, your local Seattle plumbing resource!
One of the earliest signs of developing blockage is an unusual odor coming from the pipe below. The smell depends on what has made its way into your drain, so there is no specific description that we can give to identify it. However, it will likely be unpleasant. For example in the kitchen, it will probably be old food that has accumulated in the drain and lodged there. If you notice a persistent smell coming from your drain, it is definitely something to keep an eye on. If the odor sticks around, you might just have a budding clog!
Most people are not professionally trained to appreciate the subtle differences in plumbing noises, so an unusual sound in the drain may pass without notice. But this can be another early warning that a clogged pipe is in your near future. Forming blockages will obstruct the easy flow of water and change air pressure in the pipe. This can result in some weird noises, such as prolonged gurgling or a slow trickling sound as water slowly makes its way around the clog. If something sounds off with your drains, it’s a good idea to check it out.
This one is difficult not to notice. If your drain is officially clogged, then water will accumulate in the associated sink, bathtub, or toilet bowl. It will take an unusually long time for the water to drain — if it drains at all! The most important thing to do in this case is to take quick action. The longer you wait, the worse the clog can become and your pipes can end up completely blocked.
If a drain clog is not receptive to standard do it yourself methods, your best bet is to enlist professional plumbing service to quickly get your drains working again. Additionally, if you notice signs of a more serious clog, such as the toilet filling up when you run the sink, or the bathtub filling with wastewater, these signal that something is wrong with your sewer line. Call the pros right away if you notice any of these symptoms!
Our name is Best Plumbing for a reason. We have proudly served Seattle and the Puget Sound area for 50 years. Contact us today with plumbing questions or concerns. You can find more plumbing advice on our YouTube Channel. We are here to help, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!
Photo credit: LV11, available under Creative Commons CCO.