This article originally appeared on the Springs "You're Home Blog."
At Springs Apartments, taking care of our tenants is always a top priority. Above anything else, we want you to be happy in your apartment home and we’ll do anything we can to help make that possible. If there’s ever a problem with anything in your apartment, we’re always happy to come over and solve any plumbing, electrical, or other issues you might be having; in fact, we work hard to make sure we respond to and resolve any issues in the shortest time frame possible. We don’t want residents to be inconvenienced by anything not working properly, so we’ve outlined some of our resident’s most common issues and solutions to them. Of course, if you’ve tried these methods and it still doesn’t work, always feel free to give us a call or file an online maintenance request!
Clogged Sink Disposal
If your sink/garbage disposal unit gets clogged, don’t reach for the drain cleaner! The chemicals in your typical drain cleaner can damage the plastic parts of your garbage disposal unit. Instead, turn off the unit and shine a flashlight down the drain to see if something is stuck in the blades. If there is, try and use a pair of pliers to remove it – NEVER use your hands! After that, grab a standard ¼” Allen wrench (there might be a spare under the sink), and stick the short end into the small hole at the bottom of the unit. Turn the wrench back and forth until the disposal is unstuck, and hit the small red reset button on the bottom (or side, depending on the model) of the unit. This should do the trick, but if not give us a call!
Here’s a video for reference:
Clogged Drain in Tub or Sink
Though you shouldn’t use a drain cleaner on your disposal unit, if your regular kitchen or bathroom sinks get clogged (usually from hair or grease), use an off-the-shelf drain cleaner to unclog your pipes. Make sure you find one that’s labeled “safe for pipes,” however, as a commercial-grade drain cleaner can damage non-industrial piping. Follow the instructions on the bottle for how much you should use (amounts can vary by brand), pour it over the clogged drain, and wait 15-30 minutes for the clog to break down. If this doesn’t work, we can bring in a plumber’s snake and really “get to the bottom of it.”
Light Fixture/Electrical Outlet Isn’t Working
Whether it’s a ceiling light or one of your own lamps plugged into an electrical outlet, the remedy for fixing a non-working lighting/electrical fixture is usually the same: either replace the bulb, or if that doesn’t work, check to see if the circuit has been tripped. To check to see if the circuit has broken, go to your apartment’s circuit panel and look for the breaker that’s flipped in a different direction from all of the others. Once you’ve found the broken circuit, simply flip it back to its normal position and voila! This should restore power back to that light/outlet. Finally, if the non-working lamp in question is in the bedroom, make sure it isn’t connected to the outlet controlled by the room’s light switch. These outlets can be usually be identified by their upside down outlet covers, and will only work when the switch is flipped on. If none of these options work, however, we’ll be happy to investigate the problem.
Sometimes we get called in to check an unusual smell in a resident’s kitchen. Most of the time it turns out to be from food that’s sitting in the disposal, spoiled food from the fridge, or something rotten in the garbage can. And while we can’t do much to help prevent your food from spoiling or garbage smelling, we can recommend an occasional disposal cleaning. If you use your disposal frequently, drop half a lemon into it once a week or so, partially grind it (not completely), and let it sit until you use it again. You can also try using 2 tablespoons of baking soda, letting it sit for 2 hours, and then running the disposal with water to rinse it away.
We hope you found these quick fixes useful! If you have any problems that go above and beyond these do-it-yourself solutions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call or fill out an online maintenance request using the link below.