No one really likes maintaining the plumbing in their home. But it has to be done, or else it could lead to even bigger headaches and costly repairs. Here are some easy steps you can take to keep your pipes pumping and your wallet full.

A clogged pipe can be a major inconvenience, but it’s probably something you don’t think about until it happens. The first thing to do is to avoid letting anything big down the drain. Drain covers and garbage disposals help. For the little things that will inevitably go down there, here’s a trick to clean it out. Get a big pot and some lemons and squeeze the lemon juice into the pot. Fill the pot with water and bring it to a boil, then dump the contents of the pot down the drain. This mixture will cut through grease and grime and wash everything away.

In the event of a clogged pipe, Drano® will help, but may harm your pipes in the long run. For a more gentle way of getting rid of the clog, pour one cup of baking soda followed by three cups of boiling water. Baking soda and vinegar can be a more aggressive option for tougher clogs. Repeat until the drain is cleared.

An extra tip: garbage disposals are a great way of making sure whatever goes down your drain is chopped up into manageable bits, but you need to keep the blades sharp. To do that, simply drop a handful of ice cubes into the drain with the garbage disposal running.

You should regularly check your home for any warning signs of an oncoming plumbing emergency. Keep an eye out for leaky pipes, leaky handles or valves, mildew or loosening of caulk. Also check for cracked tiles around showers, sinks or near water pipes, as these can be a sign of a leak underneath the tiles.

If you catch any of the above warning signs, set up an appointment with Blind & Sons to take some preventative measures before you are ankle-deep in a plumbing emergency.

Sources: Good Services, Plumbing Info, Care2