When remodeling your home, it can be all to easy to let the excitement of the new floor or new cabinets take over and you can end up forgetting about your plumbing. But neglecting your plumbing when planning and during the the construction of your remodel can lead to some potentially costly fixes. The good news is that proper planning can prevent most of these issues.
Below I have some ways to avoid common plumbing mistakes when you’re remodeling. Most of these suggestions would be addressed by a quality plumbing contractor, but if you are taking any part of the plumbing on yourself, take heed.
Choose a Sink First
Sometimes homeowners will choose a sink after they install the new cabinets, and the sink will be the wrong size or not fit the location of the pipes in its new setting, and they will end up having to cut a new hole or even cut the new cabinets to make the sink fit. If you choose a sink first, the contractor installing the cabinets will be able to leave the right space for you, and make sure the pipe connections are in the right location.
Measure Your Toilet’s “Rough In”
If you are replacing a toilet, one of the most important things to keep in mind is having the right measurements. You need to know the “rough in,” which is the distance between the pipe outlet and the wall. This is easy to find using your current toilet: just measure from the wall to the center of your toilet’s bolt caps on the sides, which are even with the drain. Then make sure your new toilet matches these measurements.
Make Sure Your Pipes Match
Pipes that don’t match can corrode or leak. With the right kind of fitting, you can connect two different types of pipes, but you need to know what each is made of and which fitting to use. You also need to make sure the pipes match the fixtures so that your water pressure isn’t too low, and that the new pipes meet local standards.
Try to avoid putting too many fixtures coming from one set of pipes as well, as your system can get overwhelmed, which can also lead to low water pressure.
Slope the Shower Drain
If you’re replacing your shower floor, be sure it gets sloped correctly. This will keep it flowing to the drain so that you don’t end up with standing water in the bottom of the shower, which is not only unpleasant but can create mildew or mold problems in your bathroom. The slope has to begin in the first step of the installation at the masonry level before any inserts or other layers are installed.
Vent Your Sink Correctly
When you’re putting in a new sink, it’s important to make sure the drain is properly vented. Without a good vent, your bathroom could be exposed to everything from pests and vermin to gases coming from the sewage system below your home. By having a well vented sink, you can protect your home from a potentially dangerous situation.
If you avoid these plumbing mistakes, you should have a good remodeling experience and your new kitchen or bathroom will be a great upgrade to your home. If you need or would like help with your plumbing during a remodel, we would love the opportunity to help make your new remodel as seamless as possible.