A pipe’s a pipe – and if your water pipes are sound, you’ll never have a leak. Right? Actually, your plumbing is more than a bunch of connected pipes. At each connection between fixtures and pipes, there are rubber gaskets. And for a seal to be watertight (read: leak-free), those gaskets must be in good condition. However, rubber gaskets and hoses are just like anything else. They deteriorate over time. And if they’re allowed to dry out, they’ll crack sooner than later. Fortunately, there’s 1 simple way how to prevent cracked plumbing seals.
Ever see a picture of a dry, cracked desert floor? That’s kind of what a cracked rubber seal looks like. And what’s the common factor? You got it – water. Without water, gaskets and hoses will start to dry out and crack. As simple as that sounds, many (if not most) homeowners forget about it. Out of sight, out of mind.
So let’s say you’re going on vacation. Don’t shut down your water system, at least not completely. While you don’t want your home to flood if a pipe bursts, you also have to keep plumbing seals wet.
If you’ll be on the road for an extended period, try to find someone to check in on your house every so often to run the taps – and maybe even water your plants while they’re at it.
When you’re buying an older home, especially one that’s been vacant for a while, the owner has probably had the water shut off for some time. If the pipes are dry as a bone, the rubber seals have probably lost integrity.
So that you can spot any leaks – and require the seller to replace the seals prior to sale – make sure the water’s been back on for a few days before your inspection. That should give any cracked-gasket plumbing leaks time to show themselves.
There’s good news: an experienced plumber will be able to quickly and easily replace any broken or cracked gaskets you may have. For help with this simple – and vital – part of home plumbing maintenance, Call Express Plumbing. Our expert plumbers are ready to help.