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5 Interesting Plumbing Facts You Probably Took for Granted

by James Helliwell on Sep 5, 2017

Plumbing is one of the regular amenities you often take for granted in the home. But how much do you know about this critical aspect of home convenience? Did you know that the early Romans perfected an aqueduct system of equipping their homes with water supply from nearby rivers? Unfortunately, it was fraught with problems such as ridding off used water.

Today, modern plumbing has made things a lot easier. This article will discuss some unusual but interesting facts that will make you look at your drainage system differently.

A plunger cannot resolve every blockage


Contrary to pop culture, a plunger is not always effective for toilet clogs. Unless you are particularly good with tools, you could end up worsening the situation and causing an overflow. With the right plunging technique- and tool, you should have enough suction to dislodge the obstruction.


In difficult situations, call a professional. It is advisable to have an expert work on your clog than complicate things for yourself or household. If you don’t have one, get an emergency plumber’s number and stick it on your bathroom mirror.

Asbestos could be lurking in your pipes

Asbestos pipe

Asbestos used to be a huge component for construction in the 20th century. It wasn’t until 1999 that it was totally banned in the UK. Unfortunately, traces of the hazardous material are still evident in some homes, especially older properties.

It is advisable that homeowners to carry out checks especially when moving into a new property for the first time with asbestos sampling.

You can save yourself a lot of health issues in future by detecting asbestos in your downpipes and getting rid of them on time,

Water drains clockwise in the Southern hemisphere

Water draining

Many people believe water drains in the opposite direction when you flush. But it is not true, it drains clockwise. If you never gave it much thought before, well there is a science behind it. The Coriolis force which is cause by the rotation of the earth influences the water in your toilet bowl to some extent.

But the real direction of the water depends on the design of the plumbing system. For instance, those tiny water jets inside the bowl could be set in the opposite direction. However, water will naturally flush in a clockwise direction.

Reptiles can swim upstream into your toilet

Snake Toilet

If you have been in denial, I hate to break this to you, but snake and rats can make their way through the sewers and into your water closet. There was an article some years ago about how a 3-foot long snake crawled its way up and into the toilet of a 19th floor toilet in New York.

This can be extremely scary to think of, but it shouldn’t make you paranoid. Modern toilets are being equipped with steeper pipes to prevent reptiles from working their way up. Besides, the probability of this happening is very slim.

A leaking faucet is more serious than you think

The cost of water supply in homes has risen steadily since the last decade. In April 2017, many homeowners saw their water bill increase. It is easy to dismiss a drippy faucet as an insignificant thing, but when you consider what it amounts to you could be losing a huge chunk of money in the long run.

Leaky faucets can also cause secondary problems such as a mouldy under-sink, which is hazardous to health. When you notice a faulty faucet, do fix it immediately.

Were these facts useful? Perhaps you might have heard some before. Share with your colleagues because you never know who it might help.


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