Apartment and other multi-unit buildings all share a very complex plumbing system. A clogged pipe in one unit could cause a serious problem in several other units. A backed up toilet and flooded bathroom in one apartment could mean major water damage in the unit below. Whether you live in an apartment or are a manage of a multi-unit housing complex, knowing how to prevent these plumbing issues will make things a lot easier and less expensive to manage.
If you own or manage an apartment or multi-unit building, here some tips on how to prevent the most common plumbing problems in apartment buildings:
Prevent Clogged Pipes
A clogged pipe can cause major problems in one apartment unit and spread those problems to other units, resulting in a very expensive repair for the property manager or owner of the building. To prevent clogs, make sure you don’t let anything but water go down the drains. Culprits for clogged drains are cooking fats, bits of food, garbage, dental floss and hair.
If you are the property manager, you can ask your tenants to be careful with what goes down the drain, but still have little control over that. Consider putting drain screens on all the drains in the units to help catch some of that unwanted debris from ending up in the drain.
Invest in Regular Plumbing Maintenance
Having your plumbing system regularly inspected and serviced will help you find signs of wear and tear before there is a major breakdown and need for a repair. The cost of a plumbing inspection and routine maintenance will be less expensive than the cost of a major clog in the building or a broken pipe, making this preventative action well worth the investment.
Monitor Your Water Bill
If you are the property manager or pay for your own utilities in your apartment, one tell-tale sign that there is an issue with the plumbing system is if there is a sudden increase in your water bill. This could mean there is a leak somewhere in the system. Look for areas that might have a strange smell, standing water or for any signs of water leaking in the walls or ceiling. These leaks will have to be repaired immediately. If they are left too long, they will cause major water damage and could even cause mould growth which is a health hazard.