Now that most families are sheltering in place in their home, plumbing systems are getting a lot more strain than they are used too. Even once the orders are lifted, many people are going to continue to work at home, and children will be home for the summer and possibly fall. Your home plumbing system will receive more use than it probably ever has, which may lead you wondering if you can call a Minneapolis, MN plumber while social distancing.
The answer is yes, and you may want to think about preventing a larger plumbing issue from arising. If you have not had your plumbing system serviced in a while, it may not be a bad idea to consider scheduling a basic preventive service in the next few months. In most homes, adults are at work and children at school for the brunt of the day. That means that all toileting, washing, etc. is done at public locations instead of home.
Now that everyone is home, your home plumbing system is likely to get twice the use. Not only are you using your sinks and toilets more, but you are probably running your dishwasher, garbage disposal, and washing machine more frequently as well. Everything is different now, and you want to make sure that your plumbing system is ready to accept the increase of use. Any minor problem that was not causing an issue before may become a major issue with increased use.
What Type of Safety Precautions Can Plumbers Take?
Understandably, the idea of a stranger in your home at this time is not comforting. In this time of social distancing, we want to reduce the amount of exposure we have to others. However, there are a lot of proactive steps that plumber in Minneapolis, MN can take to reduce the risk of spread and protect you and your family.
All plumbers that enter your home should wear protective equipment to protect themselves and your family. They will also strive to maintain social distancing by staying away from members of your home. Of course, you can help with this as well by giving plumbers space when they work by observing at a distance instead of getting up close to look at what they are doing.
Other safety precautions include frequent handwashing for at least 20 seconds before moving anywhere else in your home and/or utilizing hand sanitizer frequently. A disinfectant should be sprayed on any touchpoints such as the workspace, vehicle, and equipment that is brought into your house and all devices such as tablets or clipboards should be sanitized regularly.
Proper protective steps will help protect the plumber and your family. Before coming the plumber will likely call to make sure there is no risk of exposure in your home, and then proceed accordingly. With the right safety precautions in place, entering a home to take care of a plumbing issue or perform routine maintenance does not have to be intimidating.
How Can I Keep My Plumbing System in Good Shape While Sheltering in Place?
There are some simple rules you can follow at home that will help keep your plumbing system in good shape while you are sheltering in place as well. These are basic good plumbing habits that should apply to your home at any time of the year, so if you start practicing them now you help protect your plumbing system long after COVID-19 is gone as well.
To start, never flush anything that is not toilet paper down your toilet. We know that there are shortages on TP and some people may have to use alternative materials for cleaning up. However, that does not mean these alternative materials are safe to flush. The only thing that should go down your toilet drain is toilet paper. Using anything else is almost a guarantee that your toilet will clog, and you will find yourself in need of a plumber. This is a very avoidable problem, so be smart and buy a separate waste container for toilet wastes if you must use something other than TP to wipe.
Second, if you have a houseful of teens and adults you will likely all need to shower. Everyone should stay clean and healthy during the crisis but consider staggering your showers throughout the day. Not only will attempting to shower at the same time result in someone getting a cold shower, but it puts a lot of strain on your hot water heater as it attempts to keep up. Creating a staggered schedule throughout the day helps lessen the impact on your system. You can also alternate the schedule daily or weekly if there is a preferred time for the entire group so that not everyone has to accommodate all the time.
Finally, take a minute out of your day to inspect your plumbing system. Most people don’t give a second thought to their plumbing system until there is a problem. Now that you have the time, take a minute and walk around your home inspecting all of the exposed piping. Make sure to check out any sinks, drains, showers, toilets, and your hot water tank. Look for cracks, signs of leaks like damp areas near a pipe, or loose connections. If you find anything, call a plumber and have it taken care of before it becomes a major issue to save a lot of money.
Paul Bunyan Plumbing & Drains of Minneapolis, MN is here for you during this time of social distancing. If you need help with your plumbing system or want to schedule a proactive maintenance visit give us a call today. We can talk you through all of the proactive steps we will take to keep you safe and make sure that your plumbing system is up to the task of supporting your family during this unprecedented time.