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7 easy steps to prevent kitchen & bathroom plumbing problems

How to prevent costly plumbing issues for a stress-free home

Your kitchen and bathroom depend on your plumbing system working smoothly. As any homeowner knows, a lot can go wrong like clogs, leaks, water backup, and leaky valves. Any of these could create havoc throughout the system, sometimes leading to costly water damage to your home. 

Here are a few preventive steps to keep your plumbing in good working order:

1Know the location of your main water cut off. In the event of a plumbing problem, cutting off the water flow from your municipality can save you from costly property damage.

2Keep kitchen drains clear. Don't pour coffee grounds, tea bags, egg shells, solid food bits, or grease down the sink. Use a paper towel to remove grease from cooking tools and pour any excess into a used container with a screw top before disposing in the trash.

3Trash hair. Collect your strands from the sink and tub and throw away, don’t flush hair down the pipes where it can cause clogging. Also throw away cotton swabs, scrub pads, diapers, and sanitary products, don’t flush them.

4Clean drains. Drains that are seldom used can eventually have their taps dry out, leading to foul odors in your home. For an easy remedy, pour ½ gallon of water in the drain to keep the water seal in the trap.

5Keep hard-to-grind items out of your garbage disposal. Chicken bones, banana peels, and raw vegetables can damage your unit. Turn on the disposal before adding food waste and let hot water run for about 15 seconds to help flush waste down the main line.

6Clean your garbage disposal regularly. Put several handfuls of ice cubes into the disposer with the water running. This dislodges slime from inside. Follow this with half an orange or lemon for a fresh scent!

7Flush your pipes. Once a month, fill your sinks to the top with water, then release it to flush your pipes. Pull out bathroom sink stoppers and clean off any buildup.

When should you call a plumber?

  • If water isn't draining out of any of your sinks, toilets, or dishwasher *Points to a main line problem rather than just localized blockage
  • If water isn't draining out of sinks, tubs, or toilets on one side of the home *Points to a main line problem
  • If you hear water running, but no faucets or valves are open
  • If your water bill spikes without explanation
  • If your toilet gurgles or if bubbles come up after flushing
  • If a toilet remains stopped up, even after you've used the plunger several times
  • If your dishwasher isn't draining, even though the door is latched
  • If you spot a leak anywhere because water leaks won't get better on their own

NRG Protects offers easy, cost-effective ways to protect yourself against unexpected plumbing expenses. 

Browse our protection plans

Our plans give you lots of options, so you can get just what you need for your home without paying for coverage you don't need.

Terms and conditions contained in the protection plans may limit our contract obligations due to coverage caps, coverage exclusions, and our cash back offer. View plan details for more information.

*Repair claims are limited to $500 per service call and $2,000 per plan in the aggregate per plan term. Plans are provided by NRG Protects Inc. Independent contractors will be performing various services under the plans. In some instances we may make a cash payment in lieu of repairs or replacement in the amount of actual cost, which may be less than retail, to repair or replace any covered system, component, or appliance.

**If your authorized repair technician determines that the water heater is deemed irreparable, we will give you a credit of $500 towards a replacement water heater by your authorized repair technician.

Once repair plans commence, there is a 30-day waiting period before you may request services for a claim. Unless the plan provider elects not to renew the plan, upon expiration of the first year, the plan will automatically renew at the standard rate and terms unless you opt out of the auto-renewal option in writing by mail at P.O. Box 2309, Houston, TX 77252- 2309, by email at or by calling us at 1.855.241.9094. Sales tax will be added in select states.

This is a summary of what the provider will and will not cover under the plan, and is subject to the Terms and Conditions of the plan. The Terms and Conditions may limit the provider's contractual obligations due to coverage caps, coverage exclusions and any cash-back option available under the plan. Please refer to the Sample Terms & Conditions for details.