Providing Plumbing Solutions Since 1986

Why is Plumbing Maintenance Important?

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Maintenance?

For plumbing, it means looking after your fixtures, equipment, and lines to make sure everything is fully functioning and operating smoothly. It also allows you to catch any issues, such as a leaking fixture, water line, fitting, or pipe connector before they start to become big problems.

Why is it Important?

Everything is subject to wear and tear over time – even your plumbing. Any system in your home from your pipes to sinks, water heater, pumps, and more is subject to wear and tear over time. Inspecting it regularly will save you time and money as well as prevent potential damage.

Maintain and Service Your Plumbing

Provide regular service to the fixtures that require it. Water heaters, water softeners, and filter systems require annual maintenance to produce water that is clear and doesn’t smell. Your manual, if you have one, will give you an indication of what needs to be done and how often.

Plumbtech Plumbing can also provide many maintenance services such as flushing your electric hot water tank.

What Fixtures Should Be Maintained?

Water heaters, sump pumps, sewage pumps, water pumps, taps, water softeners, drinking water filter systems, drains, etc.

Electric Water Heater

Hot water tanks need to be flushed once each year depending on the water source. Hard water requires more frequent flushing than soft water. Soft water comes from lakes and rivers. Hard water may also be treated through a filter system which removes minerals such as iron, calcium, and manganese to make the water softer.

Hard water has sediment – naturally occurring calcium and minerals – which builds up in the bottom of your tank causing it to work harder, burn more energy, and cost more money.

It will also affect your anode rod which protects the inside of your tank from corroding. Changing the sacrificial anode will help prolong the life of your tank. There are many different types of rods available depending on your water.


Maintenance may be required for any type of pump, but the sump pump requires the most attention. That’s because it’s essential to remove any water that enters the basement.

Check the sump pump annually, while the ground is still frozen and before any heavy spring rainfall. The ground won’t be able to absorb water and excessive rainfall may enter your house through cracks in the foundation and/or caulking around basement windows, and window wells. Also, check it annually if your home is in a low-lying area or if the property is susceptible to flooding.

In addition to old age, many sump pumps fail because of issues with the float. If the float isn’t working properly, the pump won’t turn on, and flooding can occur. Check to make sure it is working correctly.

If the pump has a battery backup, check it as well as the sensors to make sure they are working. In some cases, alerts may show up on your mobile phone app. Battery backups are handy because if there is a power outage your pump won’t work. As they don’t automatically come with the pump, consider having one installed.

Older sump pumps may not have an overheating switch. If it is missing, consider replacing your pump as it can be a fire hazard.

All pumps or any an electrical motor should be plugged into a GFI electrical outlet. Check that the breaker trips off when the pump is plugged into its circuit. The breaker will cut the power when the pump motor shorts out which will prevent a fire from starting.

Sometimes silt and sand will collect at the bottom of the sump pump pit. It needs to be removed as it will damage the pump and shorten its life.

If replacing a sump pump consider purchasing a submersible pump as a safer alternative to a stem or column-style pump and have it professionally installed.

We are your best choice for plumbing services. Contact us today.

Filter Systems

Filter systems may be used with hard water or soft water depending on what you’re looking to remove.

If your water source is a lake or river it’s a good idea to have a filter system that includes a sediment filter and a UV (ultraviolet) light to kill bacteria. Some filter systems also have a carbon filter to improve taste and smell. The UV light should be replaced annually. Filters may need to be replaced more often.

Filter systems should be installed before the water softener if you are using one. There are whole house filter systems as well as point of use, such as a single tap.

Water Softeners

The most important element in maintaining a water softener is the salt level. Make sure it’s topped up otherwise your water may change colour from clear to a dirty shade of brown. If the brine (salt in the tank) is not maintained your water will also return to its customary hardness level.


Keep the aerator in your tap spout clean. Taps have tiny screens that collect debris from hard water as well as at cottages or seasonal residences where the water is turned off.

Taps are subject to wear and tear too. Some dripping faucets can be repaired by replacing a faulty washer, gasket, or valve (cartridge) inside the handle, if the parts are available.

Remember your outside taps as well. They need to be drained at the end of the season as well as turned off inside of the house to prevent freezing.


If the drain, on any fixture is running slow, it indicates a potential problem. It may be partially blocked. If all drains in the house are running slow, the issue could be in your main drain inside the house or outside leading to the municipal sewer line or septic system.

Plumbtech can do a camera drain inspection to pinpoint the location and depth of any problem in your septic tank or sewer line. It has video recording capability too. For the camera to “see” however, the drain has to be cleared with a drain snake and have no water in it.

Otherwise, prevention is key to keeping drains clear. Keep food debris, fats, needles and syringes, dental floss, wipes, coffee grounds, sanitary products, pet litter and more out of the drain. Dispose of it in the garbage instead.

Toilets can become plugged accidentally if a child or pet drops a toy in it. In addition, hair, soap, and toothpaste will start blocking a drain over time and it will become necessary to clear it.

If a drain is used infrequently, it may smell. The trap may have dried up, allowing sewage gas to enter the house. Pour some water into the trap to prevent it.

For fixtures that are in use all the time, check that the traps are cleaned out so that water runs through easily.

Leak patrol

Check water lines and fixtures for leaks.

As some plumbing is hidden in walls or in the fixture itself look for signs of moisture or water on the floor.

Plumbing Emergencies

While regular inspections and maintenance will go a long way to preventing emergencies, the unforeseen can and will occur. In an emergency, shut off the water and call Plumbtech. The Barrie-based plumbing company maintains a 24-7 emergency line with a live answering service.

We pride ourselves on being the local plumbers Barrie and area property owners trust.

Contact us for all your plumbing needs.

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