Investing in your first commercial building is a learning experience. Not only are there many more things to consider in terms of general maintenance, but the plumbing system is more intricate and elaborate. Commercial facilities often see more demand on their plumbing infrastructure, which makes it important that you are attentive to any possible signs of problems. In addition to routine inspections from a commercial plumber, there are a few other things that you should be watching for.
Monitor Your Water Pressure
The pressure coming through your pipes can tell you a lot about the health of your plumbing system. If you've had the pipes inspected and you know there are no problems, but the water pressure is low, you may be able to adjust it by turning up the pressure setting on your water pump or the pressure regulator. However, be careful not to turn it up too much. If the pressure is too high, it can weaken older pipe joints and damage deteriorating pipes.
If you see a sudden change in the pressure of your water flow without any obvious explanation, that's something that shouldn't be ignored. Usually, a pressure drop like this means that you have a crack in your incoming water lines. The water flowing out of the crack weakens the pressure of the water that reaches your tap. You'll need to have a plumber inspect the system to find and repair the damage.
Watch For Leaks Throughout The Building
You should periodically walk through the entire building and inspect all of the walls, ceilings, and exposed pipes. Look for any signs of moisture, water accumulation, or mold growth. All of these things indicate that there's a leak in the pipes that needs to be addressed. Sometimes you can seal them on your own by either tightening the joint or applying a silicone plumbing sealant. If you can't fix the leak on your own, turn off the water supply to that section of the pipes using the closest shut-off valve. Then, call your commercial plumber to help you with the repairs.
Be Attentive To Your Drain Lines
From the sink drains to the toilets, the water flowing out of your building is just as important as what's flowing in. Commercial buildings face a unique challenge in this regard, though. It's much harder to regulate what is flushed down the toilet or poured down the drain in a commercial facility, particularly if your building is open to the public.
Post signs in visible areas so that everyone knows not to flush anything other than toilet paper down the toilet. In addition, signs around the sinks that discourage the dumping of grease and other products down the drains can also be helpful.
Talk with your commercial plumber about how to monitor and maintain your drains to avoid the risk of serious clogs and backups. Especially in busy commercial buildings, you may need to schedule routine drain cleanings on a regular basis as a preventative measure.
For more information, contact local professionals like those found at Ben Franklin Plumbing Services.