3 common plumbing issues and how you can avoid them
Thursday, January 29, 2015
It's the New Year, and you have made a resolution to expect the unexpected this year. Each morning, you wake up to an upbeat song that fires you up for the day.
You're Rocky, preparing for the big fight against Apollo. "Eye of the Tiger" plays in the background, and you think through your strategy for the day, hoping nothing goes wrong once you set foot in the building and face the rush of customers.
About midway through the morning, something goes wrong — terribly wrong. The entire floor of the restroom floods with water, forcing you to temporarily close it. What happens next? Do you:
- Send an employee in to figure out the problem, hoping he figures it out before the lunch rush
- Look up a local plumber and hope he/she gets there quickly to fix the issue
- Call an experienced repair partner who has experience with your store and a reputation for fixing issues the first time
As you know, this scenario happens all too often in a retail environment. Sometimes the fix is simple: a toilet clog can be easily cleared with a few thrusts of a plunger.
Other times, the clog can result from months of customers placing miscellaneous items where they don't belong. Common items we find in retail drains include security tags, feminine hygiene products, pregnancy tests, paper towels, children's toys — we've even found T-shirts and other large pieces of clothing shoved into drains.
One way to prevent a backup from happening — particularly in older buildings or high-traffic facilities — is to jet them. Think of the system like your arteries. Over time, residue builds up around the inside of the drain similar to the way plaque builds up in our arteries. Drain jetting clears this residue, and can be performed one or more times a year.
Other potential plumbing issues
Backed up drain lines are just one of several potential plumbing situations that could derail your operations. A failing hot water heater could deliver another potential knock-out punch to your store — particularly if food is a part of your offering and you need hot water.
Rather than wait for the heater to go out, implement a preventative maintenance system so you can stay ahead of potential issues and identify them before it causes a disruption.
Frozen or burst pipes can also cause a substantial business interruption during cold temperatures. Could you imagine arriving at work and finding the entire store was flooded? Insulate exposed pipes before the temperatures drop to prevent this from happening.
Keeping the lines open
Your time is precious. You don't want to lose time or experience a business interruption due to a potentially avoidable issue. In addition to the preventative steps that will help avert a plumbing-related catastrophe, you will want to identify a reliable partner who can respond to your call quickly and is equipped with the knowledge and equipment to fix your issue the first time.
Just like Rocky, a great operation always has the support of an experienced team or partner network. If you have an emergency situation that happens in your restaurant, you'll want to call an experienced repair partner who has experience with your store and a reputation for fixing issues the first time.
Otherwise, a seemingly small plumbing issue could result in a knockout punch that derails your business.
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