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6 Common Plumbing Myths

blocked drains in laundry

The internet is full of plumbing myths. Popular examples include washing lemon peels down the sink to get rid of a smelly drain or that a noisy hot water system is an indication the tank will explode. Often there is little or no truth to them. Let’s bust the most common plumbing myths before you go and try something that could end up damaging your plumbing system.

1. Toilets flush in different directions in the northern and southern hemispheres

Most of us have heard the myth about toilets flushing in opposite directions in the southern and northern hemispheres. The myth originates from the Coriolis effect, a phenomenon that explains how objects on Earth curve. Like a cyclone or hurricane, the phenomenon is best observed on a large scale. Comparatively, the water in your toilet is much smaller in scale. This means the direction of the water will not change regardless of whether you live in Perth, Australia or Stockholm, Sweden.

2. A rumbling hot water system will explode

If you hear rumbling and tumbling from your hot water system, it’s most likely in need of a good clean. There’s probably a build-up of sediment in your tank, and bubbles that are rising through the sediment cause the rumbling sound. Keep your hot water system in good working condition by having it regularly serviced by a licensed plumber.

3. You can flush wipes down the toilet

Wipes do not dissolve the same way as toilet paper. Even if the package states they are “flushable”, they are still likely to clog your toilet. To avoid problems, only flush toilet paper and human waste down your toilet.

4. Don’t worry about a leaky tap

It’s easy to ignore a dripping tap, but you are setting yourself up to lose money in the long run. On top of increasing your water bill, the dripping could wear out the tap, which will cost you even more to repair. You are better off calling a plumber to fix the problem.

5. Use a drain cleaner and a plunger to unblock your sink

 Using a plunger to unclog your sink is a good and environmentally friendly way to get rid of clogs in your kitchen plumbing. But if you have already poured drain cleaner down the sink, you should reconsider using a plunger. The plunger will push the drain cleaner back up the pipe, and the chemicals in the cleaner could cause serious burns to your skin.

6. It’s okay to pour grease down the drain if you mix it with boiling water first

Grease accounts for the majority of kitchen plumbing blockages. The hot water will melt the grease at first, but when the grease hits the pipes, it will cool down and harden. Once it lines the pipes, it will attract food scraps and cause a clog to form. These types of blockages are often deep within the pipes, so you will have to call a plumber to fix the issue.

When doing your research online, it can be difficult to separate legitimate advice from myths and old wives’ tales. No matter how big or small your plumbing problem may be, it’s always better to call in a professional rather than attempt DIY hacks that may make the situation worse. Call GA Perry today for all your plumbing maintenance issues.