5 Plumbing Troubleshooting Steps to Try Before Calling a ProIndianapolis summers can be rough on your home’s plumbing. Children are using the bathroom more often. Clothes washers run more frequently, and outdoor cookouts can strain the garbage disposal. Before turning to a professional plumber, consider these strategies to do your own plumbing troubleshooting.


Dirty clothes from outdoor fun are part of summer. Do a quick check on your washing machine:

  • Ensure adequate space between wall and washer so the hoses do not kink
  • Inspect the hoses for cracks or bulges that could hint at future leaks
  • If the hoses are more than three years old, replace them to lower the chance of hose failure

Remember to only run the washer when you will be home; it makes plumbing troubleshooting easier.


Corn husks and other stringy foods (banana peels, celery) should be thrown out or go in a compost heap, not fed to the garbage disposal. Other items to avoid putting down the sink or into the disposal:

  • Cooking fats, grease and oils
  • Instant potatoes, stuffing mixes and rice
  • Bones and gristle

Sewer Lines

Plumbing troubleshooting can involve detective work, such as figuring out why your tub is backing up. A likely culprit: rainwater overwhelming the sewer line. Summer tree growth can send roots into the sewer line, too. Preventive maintenance in early summer can uncover potential problems.

Lawn Sprinklers

With embedded lawn sprinklers, save a call to a professional plumber: check them at the start of summer, and mow only when the heads are retracted. This avoids clipping the sprinkler or ruining your mower blade.


One of the most common plumbing troubleshooting challenges is the toilet. Instruct anyone using the bathroom to use minimal toilet paper. Keep a plunger handy if a clog occurs:

  • Use the plunger to push down, then pull up quickly. This backwards vacuum action often dislodges the clog.
  • Do not flush the toilet again until gravity pulls the existing bowl water down through the hygienic trap. Additional flushing may cause the toilet to flood your bathroom.

When you do need to call a professional, please contact us at Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Brownsburg, Indiana and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “ufuk sezgen/Shutterstock”

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