How to Keep Water Pipes Clean

It’s important to keep water pipes clean. If you don’t clean pipes regularly, lime and other deposits may clog the pipes, which can lead to lack of drainage from sinks, showers and sewers, dirty water coming out of the pipes or damage to the pipes. There are several things you can do to keep your pipes clean.

Commercial Cleaners
Some people like to use commercial drain cleaners to clean out water pipes. These commercial drain cleaners are composed of chemicals that eat at lime, rust and other debris clogging water pipes. They can be effective for lime removal or clearing out a clog, but in the long run they don’t represent the best solution. Just as antibiotic medication can kill good bacteria along with the bad, commercial cleaners can destroy pipes along with the junk inside the pipe that is causing a clog. We don’t recommend using these cleaners frequently for this reason.

Using Water Softeners to Clean Pipes
Water softeners may be a better method of removing debris from your pipes. Depending on where you live, you may have “harder” water–water that has extra minerals and other contaminants. The minerals in hard water sometimes stick to pipes. To solve this problem, you can get a softener system, or water filtration system, which removes the minerals from the water for you. This stops lime, calcium and other minerals from building up in your pipes.

Lime Removal Methods
It’s especially important to focus on removing lime from your hot water pipes. Most hot water is hot enough that it dissolves lime that is already in the pipes or in the water supply system. When the water finishes flowing through the pipes, the lime hardens and sticks to the pipes, causing clogs.

To resolve this problem, you need to add lime remover to your hot water heater. Empty about half of the water out of the heater and put lime remover into the remaining water. Refill the water and run the hot water. At first, you will see foam in your sink as the lime remover does its job. When the water is clear again, the lime has been removed from your pipes. Repeat this every two to three months to keep lime from building up in your pipes. You may want to use lime remover in conjunction with a water filtration system to stop lime from getting into your pipes at such a high rate to begin with.

As you can see, there are several methods you may use to clean hot water pipes. Try these methods to see what works best for you and your pipes. If these pipe cleaning methods fail to give you the results you seek, you may need to contact a professional plumber for assistance. Plumbers can clear stubborn clogs and replace broken or damaged pipes so that your pipes will function more effectively and you won’t get as many clogs.

Benjamin Franklin Plumbing provides regular drain cleaning maintance for Durham, NC and surrounding areas.

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