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The warm summer weather means swimming, sunning, and splashing all day long. Along with all the outdoor fun comes possible plumbing problems. If you’re not sure what summer-time outdoor activities and your plumbing system have to do with one another, think about what you use water for during these months.

From clogs and leaks to your outdoor irrigation system, take a look at some of the most common summer plumbing problems — and what you can do to prevent them. And if you’re too late to take preventive steps (meaning that the problem is already in effect), a professional plumber can help to repair your system and get your home flowing again.

Shower and Tub Clogs

Summer fun is enjoyable for the whole family. Whether you’re spending the day at the beach or the kids are making a mud pit in the backyard, the family has plenty of opportunities for messy outdoor play. Unless you have an outdoor shower or are on-board with hosing everyone down in the driveway, a shower or bath is absolutely essential after playtime is over.

Where does the sand, mud, gunk, and outdoor debris that’s caught between your child’s toes, in their hair, and all over their arms go? Most likely, it’s headed down your drain. The problem with showering or bathing after a day of messy play comes after the water tries to drain. Sand, mud, leaves, grass clippings, and other natural materials can easily turn into a major clog.

Again, using an outdoor shower or hose is an easy option to keep the drain-clogging muck away. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you or your child has to shower outdoors. Just rinse off the debris before going inside to get fully clean.

Another preventive measure is to install drain catchers in your shower or tub. While these may not catch everything, they can stop larger chunks of debris from going into your plumbing system.

Garbage Disposal Back-Ups

The warm weather ushers in more than just outdoor play. Summer is also barbeque season. Even though you might do the majority of the cooking outdoors, cleaning up shouldn’t include putting everything down the disposal.

Common barbeque leftovers, such as chicken wings or rib bones, can damage your disposal’s blades or cause clogs. Likewise, the juices and fats from cooked meats can cause your disposal to malfunction or clog your sink’s pipes.

Instead of bringing everything indoors, tightly wrap the throw-aways and place them in a sealed trash can.

Irrigation System Situation

Keeping your flowers fresh-looking and the grass green is a top priority for many homeowners. But that shouldn’t mean that you have to spend half the morning or the entire early evening standing outside with the hose.

An outdoor irrigation system is a simple solution to your exterior water needs. But a leaking system, or one that isn’t well-maintained, can cost you money in wasted water. A crack that’s as small as 1/32nd of an inch can leak up to 6,300 gallons of water in one month, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Check for unexplained puddles in your yard, moldy patches on grass, or sunken areas of ground. These are all tell-tale signs of a leak.

Keep in mind, regular sprinkler maintenance and checks by a qualified professional can prevent these leaks from growing.

Sewer Surges

The hot weather isn’t the only issue to watch out for during the summer months. Excessive rain can cause serious sewer problems. When the sewers overflow, water can back up into your yard or your home. This doesn’t mean that fresh water is spilling onto your property. A sewer back-up brings bacteria-filled, potentially dangerous water into your home.

While regular maintenance can help prevent this issue, it isn’t always the answer. In some cases, a sewer backup is out of your control — especially in wild summer weather. Given the health concerns that come with this type of plumbing issue, you must make sure to call a professional plumber for an immediate repair.

Do you have summer plumbing problems? Contact Billy Bell Plumbing for more information.