Having your own place is a dream for all of us. However, having your home comes with it some niggles that make for an unpleasant experience occasionally. It comes as no surprise if a plumbing emergency is one of the problems you will be having every given year. Plumbing issues come in different forms. These could be leaky pipes, slow or clogged drains, low water pressure, problems in your sewer lines, hot water issues, sump pump failure, dripping faucets, a running toilet, and other plumbing problems. Worse of all is when your sewer lines and hard-to-reach areas in your plumbing system are having problems making it difficult to address by yourself. Aside from being an annoyance, plumbing issues can also drive your water bill higher. To prevent plumbing disasters from occurring in the future, we share with you ten of the most common plumbing problems most homeowners encounter and how to solve them.
Aside from discussing the most common plumbing problems in your home, we will also discuss topics ranging from different plumbing tools and equipment and which plumbing device helps prevent a backflow. We will have more articles coming up about plumbing services on our site.
The 10 Most Common Plumbing Problems
Slow Draining Sink
You can’t imagine the volume of water you drain in a year from your daily use of your sink. Since we are talking about dirty water, even if you are conscious about keeping the drain cover in place, you will always take congealed fat, food remnants, and even non-perishable particles down the drain with the water.
The methods of clearing the clogged drains may involve:
- A plunger.
- Pouring down Drano or a drain cleaner.
- A mixture of vinegar and soda.
- Using a plumber’s snake.
Don’t wait for your clogged drains to be blocked entirely. Otherwise, you need to seek a professional plumber to fix the clogged drains.
One cause of dripping faucets is interior washers becoming worn, dislodged, or stiff. Even improper faucet installation can also be a cause of dripping faucets. Though you won’t realize it, you may be wasting several hundreds of gallons yearly from just one dripping faucet.
You can easily replace the washers by turning off the main water supply, then disassembling the faucet to replace the new washers.
Clogged Shower and Bath Drain
Shower and bath drains are caused by dried soap and hair strands getting in the way of proper draining. However, after years of use, there may come the point when these drains clog anyway. Placing a drain cover will address this issue for a long time.
You can use the same recommendations as what you will do for clogged sinks. A plunger can solve most cases of clogged shower drains. However, if the source of clogs is deeper, you will need to use a plumber’s snake to pry out the source of the clogging.
When the toilet fills up after flushing, you get a clogged toilet. Clogged toilets are caused by a mixture of paper and human waste. A single tissue paper can dissolve in water. However, if the volume of water or water pressure isn’t sufficient, there will come the point when the paper mixed with human waste is hard to dissolve.
Clogged toilets can be addressed by using a plunger. A sewer snake or a drain auger can also loosen the materials clogging your toilet.
Faulty Water Heaters
Whether you have a hot water heater, a solar water heater, or a tankless water heater, there will come a point when you don’t have a hot water supply suddenly. Isn’t it inconvenient when you suddenly have cold water for your shower? Issues causing the failure of water heaters are not as straightforward. A faulty water heater could be caused by sediment buildup or water heating element failures in your plumbing system.
You can prevent water heater failures by regularly inspecting your hot water systems. The pilot light may not be activating correctly. Hence the issue can be addressed quickly. If the water pressure is low, you need professional plumbers to fix your water heater as soon as possible.
A simple problem such as a faulty flapper valve can cost you hundreds of dollars worth of water in a year. A running toilet can also be caused by sediment buildup that affects flushing.
A simple toilet repair kit can address this issue immediately. Replacing your toilet internals is something you can do yourself.
Low Water Pressure
Low water pressure could be a tell-tale sign of a plumbing crisis. Low water pressure is among the most common plumbing problems for older plumbing systems. These may have leaky pipes that are rusted or broken down. If low water pressure exists in a specific area such as the shower, it could be caused by sediment buildup on aerators. Hard water can cause many cases of low water pressure that attacks specific plumbing fixtures because of mineral deposits.
You may clean the aerator using vinegar or replace the aerator. However, in the case of a broken plumbing system, especially for older homes, you will need a professional plumber to look for all the leaky pipes and repair your plumbing system completely.
If you live in a freezing environment, leaky pipes and cracked pipes can be caused by water having frozen in your plumbing system. Weak water flow is one sign that you have leaky pipes, primarily if it affects a specific location. Pipes corrode over time, and leaky pipes are a common problem that you will encounter eventually.
You may fix leaky pipes by covering leaking areas with a plumber’s tape as a temporary measure. However, for a permanent fix, you need the help of a professional plumber to look for all the leaky pipes and make the necessary pipe replacement or repairs.
Sewer Line Problems
A Sewer system backup is a massive issue to address once it happens. It is smelly and unclean, but sewer line backups are also expensive to fix. You may have a sewer system backup if you notice multiple slow drains, smell human waste, or multiple toilets are not working.
In the case of sewer system backup, you need to call a plumber to detect the location of the blockage. If the blockage is within your property, it is your responsibility to fix it. In this case, it is more convenient than waiting for your water company to fix sewer clogs located outside your property.
Jammed Garbage Disposal
Running the garbage disposal without water or disposing hard-to-dissolve materials such as corn husks and potato peels can jam your garbage disposal unit.
Solving this issue can be as simple as pressing the reset button. However, you may need to open the unit to remove the sources of blockage. The garbage disposal unit comes with a key. However, if you somehow lost it, you may use a 1/4 inch fallen wrench to open the garbage unit to free the motor.
Takeaways: Regularly Observing Your Plumbing System Can Solve Most of Your Plumbing Problems
To spare yourself from a plumbing crisis or massive plumbing disasters, it pays to check your plumbing system for possible leaks. Routine drain cleaning can also help prevent more challenging cases of blockage removal in the future. Observing tell-tale signs of plumbing problems such as slow or clogged drains and addressing them using “first aid” solutions can help. However, such problems as low pressure of water supply or backed-up sewer lines will require professional help. AK plumbing has the knowledge and experience to deal with plumbing issues that Duarte homes and businesses encounter. AK Plumbing is a family-owned business that has served Duarte, California and surrounding cities and towns for decades. For a free quote, call us at (626) 944-7760, or contact us.