There are many interesting facts about plumbing people don’t know. For example, it was Alfred M. Moen who invented the single-handed mixing faucet. Moen came up with the idea after scalding his hands using a standard two-handle faucet. He had finished the project by 1939, but wasn’t able to find a manufacturer until 1947.
Interesting to know. But not something you’ll find helpful with your actual plumbing unless you want to impress houseguests with your knowledge of the origin of the single-handed faucet in the bathroom. We have some more useful facts about your plumbing to help you take care of it and know when to call a professional plumber in Melrose, NM for repairs.
1) Leaky faucets waste enormous amounts of water
A dripping faucet may be a bit annoying because of the sound it makes—especially if it’s in the bathroom attached to your bedroom—but it can’t waste that much water, right? You’d be surprised. A leaky faucet can accumulate waste of 3,000 gallons of water per year. That’s enough for 40 showers! The country would save billions of gallons of water a year if everyone got plumbers out to fix those leaky faucets.
2) The toilet uses the most indoor water of any appliance
No, it’s not the shower! On average, the toilets in a home account for 40% of all indoor water use. This is why we strongly advise customers look into replacing older toilets, some which use 5 gallons per flush, for a low-flow models that only use 1.5 gallon per flush. Even a newer toilet reduces water use by 50%, and this adds up to immense water savings.
3) Copper pipes can corrode
You may have heard copper pipes are corrosion-proof. This isn’t true: they are corrosion resistant. They will last for longer than other types of metal like outdated lead, galvanized steel, and iron pipes. But chemical reactions can create a specific type of corrosion called formicary corrosion that eats through copper and creates minute pinhole leaks. These leaks are insidious and hard to spot, which is why we recommend homeowners have leak detection done every few years.
4) “Haunted houses” are often only haunted by water hammer
Homes that may seem haunted by strange knocking and clanging sounds from the walls are probably only haunted by a phenomenon in the plumbing called water hammer. This is when the air cushions inside the pipes are lost, so when a faucet is turned off, the sudden stopping of the water creates a clanging sound. Although this may sound like a bit of trivia for the Halloween season, water hammer is something you need to stop if it occurs. It can cause damage to your plumbing.
5) Cat litter is NOT flushable
Here’s one for all the cat lovers: never flush cat litter down the toilet! This may seem like a quick and easy way to get rid of litter, but cat litter is designed to clump for easy scooping. It will clump in the plumbing and you’ll end up with a terrible clog that will require a professional plumber to service.