Tidy, well maintained bathrooms minimise morning chaos and are a pleasure to be in.
While many bigger bathroom jobs require a qualified plumber both by law and to avoid costly disasters, minor repairs like fixing leaking taps and regrouting tiles can be completed by anyone with DIY experience.
Regular maintenance keeps the bathroom looking great, avoiding water damage and expensive repairs.
Slow water drainage can be caused by a build-up of grease, hair or soap in the U-bend under the sink.
Traps or U-bends contain water that blocks sewer gas from entering the building. Their shape can also trap solid matter, causing blockages.
If the pipe isn’t totally blocked, try a homemade drain cleaner of half a cup of bicarb soda, a cup of white vinegar and four litres of boiling water.
Pour down the drain and repeat, if necessary.
This should break apart any greasy build-up, but solid blockages need to be cleared by dismantling the U-bend, clearing the blockage and cleaning it out with a bottlebrush.
If water is backed up into the basin, bail it out until there’s just enough to cover the plunger cup. Position the plunger cup over the drain and pump vigorously, straight up and down, for at least a minute to dislodge small blockages from the U-bend.
If the basin remains blocked, position a container under the U-bend. Wrap masking tape around the nuts on both sides of the U-bend and loosen with a pair of large multigrips. Remove the U-bend and pour excess water into the container.
Use a coathanger to remove the blockage and scrape gunk from the U-bend. Clean thoroughly with detergent and a bottlebrush. Smear petroleum jelly around the screw threads before replacing to make removal easier next time.