Renovating your home is an exciting project, but it can also be a daunting one. One of the most important aspects to consider when planning your renovation is the plumbing system. Neglecting to take proper precautions can result in costly and time-consuming repairs later on.
To ensure that you don’t run into any problems during or after your renovation, here are some essential tips from Mister Plumber for taking care of your plumbing before beginning a remodel.
Ready? Let’s go.
1. Check the current health of your home’s plumbing system
Before starting any work, it’s important to get a good idea of what condition the current plumbing system is in. For example,
- Do you know how old your pipes are?
- What’s the condition of your underground main drain?
- Could your foundation walls require some waterproofing?
- Do all of your faucets and valves still work properly?
- Are there any signs of corrosion or leaking?
The last thing you want is to start your expensive renovation and then find out that you have underlying issues with your plumbing.
By taking the time to assess the current state of your plumbing, you’ll be able to determine what steps need to be taken in order for your renovation to go smoothly. It’s a good idea to have a professional plumber inspect the system before you start, so that you know what needs to be addressed. This can save time and money in the long run.
2. Consider the layout and design of your plumbing system
When it comes to planning the layout of your renovation, don’t forget to think about how it will affect the plumbing. For example, if you plan on expanding a room or adding new fixtures, you may need to add additional pipes or drains. Consider all of these elements as you design your project, and discuss them with your contractor.
Pro tips for creating a new layout of your home
- When you plan the layout for your basement, try to position your washroom, laundry, or kitchen as close as possible to existing drain lines. It’s easier and less expensive compared to installing new drain/vent and water systems.
- Also, use your existing washroom on the main or second floor as a frame of reference to dedicate proper space for plumbing fixtures.
- If you’re planning to lower your basement, it’s best to place the washroom near the front wall. This way, the drain will use gravity to flow, instead of using a sewage pump at the back, which needs regular maintenance and can be loud when in use.
- When you’re picking a spot for your washer and dryer, it’s a good idea to put them as near to an exterior wall as possible. That way, it’s easier to run the vent pipe (which is usually 4 inches wide) out of the house for your dryer. Another option is if you have joists in the ceiling running towards an exterior wall, you can hide the vent pipe between them – another good spot for the dryer’s exhaust.
3. Upgrade your plumbing fixtures
If your home’s getting a fresh new look, why not upgrade your plumbing fixtures while you’re at it? You can swap out old and worn fixtures for newer ones that are more energy efficient and better performing. Have a plumber install them for you to ensure they’re functioning properly.
Upgrading your plumbing fixtures can also add to the overall design of the space. Consider choosing fixtures that will match your chosen color scheme or interior design style, like a classic white porcelain sink or a modern stainless steel faucet.
Here are some important reminders for picking out new plumbing gear.
- Don’t skimp on quality. Go for durable and long-lasting options that can handle wear and tear over time. You should buy your new plumbing fixtures from reputable brands like Kohler, American Standard, or Delta. Research and read reviews from other customers before buying.
- Always try to go for items that have a lifetime warranty. Check to make sure it’s easy and quick to get replacement parts – you don’t want to be stuck waiting for a certain item when you need it.
- Choose fixtures that are corrosion-resistant and water-efficient for long-term use. Look for certifications such as NSF or WaterSense on items like your showerhead.
4. Insulating your water pipes
When you’re renovating your home, don’t forget the importance of insulating the pipes. This will help keep the water at a comfortable temperature while also preventing condensation and reducing energy costs.
If you have any water pipes close to exterior walls, be sure to relocate them away from the wall to make sufficient space for insulation. Ideally, keep water pipes inside interior walls to prevent freezing.
Pro Tip: Consider putting soundproof insulation inside the wall and ceiling if you plan to rent out your basement. This will help keep noise levels down for your tenants.
4. Preparing for the future
A smart homeowner plans for the future when it comes to their home’s plumbing. When you’re renovating, think about what your future needs may be and adjust accordingly.
Here are some important things to keep in mind for your home’s future plumbing situation
- If you’re not planning to install a kitchen or laundry in your home renovation, consider talking to your plumber about preparing rough-in pipes for future installation. You never know when you might decide to rent out your basement or add these features to your home in the future.
- Install a backwater valve: This device helps to prevent sewage from backing up into your home, which can save you a lot of money in repairs and clean-up costs.
- Set aside extra space: When you’re renovating, set aside some extra space for future plumbing needs. This way, if you ever decide to add an additional bathroom or laundry station down the road, it will be much easier to do so with the proper preparation.
- If you live in an area that’s very snowy or prone to flooding, it’s a good idea to install a sump pump. This can help keep your basement dry and prevent costly water damage.
- Consider increasing the size of drain lines: It’s a good idea to increase the size of drain lines if you plan on adding more fixtures in the future. Make sure to use PVC piping or other corrosion-resistant materials as well.
- Set up a water leak detection & smart shut-off system. The last thing you want is for a plumbing emergency to cause extensive damage to your brand-new renovation. It can be worth your while to install a system like Watercop to detect water leaks and shut off the main water supply to prevent any disasters.
5. Consult a licensed plumber before touching anything
By planning ahead, making smart decisions, and following these tips, you can make sure that your home renovation project goes smoothly.
But remember, when it comes to your home’s plumbing installations during renovations, it’s probably best you don’t leave anything to chance with non-licensed handymen.
Hiring a professional plumber for inspections, advice, and fittings is the safest way to make sure everything is done correctly and efficiently. Not only will they spot any potential problems before they get out of hand, but they can also advise you on the best materials and methods for your home.
Whether you’re new to home renovations or an experienced DIYer, Mister Plumber can help you get the job done right.
Call us at +1 416 939 1530 or contact us online for a FREE consultation on your next home project.