Rich Escallier offers prompt,
efficient, and reasonably-priced solutions
repairs and remodeling.
- Sink Leaks
The J- or S-shaped tube under your sink is called a P-trap. Its purpose is to
fill with water, make a seal, and prevent sewer gas from coming into the home. Drain
pipes can be metal or plastic.
The only advantage of a metal drain pipe is that it looks better than plastic. Plastic
drain pipes are a better choice than metal drain pipes because:
- They do not corrode (ever)
- They flow better. (Things have a much harder time getting stuck in plastic pipes.)
- They rarely leak.
- They last forever.
I receive a call to replace a corroded (and/or leaking) P-trap every week or two. The
metal (chrome-plated brass) P-trap in my vanity took 20 years to fail. But metal P-traps
will fail; the only question is when they will fail. I've never been called for
problems with a properly-installed plastic P-trap, and I've never seen one corroded or
ready to fail.
There are two tests to see if your sink is going to leak:
- Touch (as delicately as possible) the bottom of the metal drain under your sink. If it
feels like sandpaper, then the drain is close to the end of its useful life.
- Gently push on the bottom of the pipe. If there is any movement at all, the pipe is
in danger of imminent failure. REPLACE IT SOON!!
Never do test #2:
- before dinner
- if you have anything else to do that day
- if you didn't get--or don't need--a good night's sleep
- when the plumbing stores are closed or about to close
- Bare Wood
All exterior tissue (including bare wood) should have a quick debridement (a visit from
the scraper or a wire brush) and a dressing (spot primer) before the winter. This is essential
for the health of your home!!