7 Common Plumbing Problems Tackled And Solved

Dripping faucets, clogged drains, and low water pressure can cause a lot of frustration for homeowners. If left unchecked, these issues can become more serious and expensive to repair.

However, some plumbing problems may require the help of an expert plumber while others can be easily resolved by you at home. Learn about 7 Common Plumbing Problems Solved:

Clogged Drains

Drains take on a lot—water, waste, hair, grease, food particles, and more—and at some point, most will clog. But that doesn’t mean you need to grab your phone to call a plumber, because most clogs can be handled with inexpensive DIY methods.

Most bathroom clogs are caused by dirt, skin flakes, and hair that bind to soap scum on the walls of the drain pipe and prevent water flow. Chemical drain openers like Liquid-Plumr can often dissolve these clogs, but the caustic chemicals they create can be hard on pipes.

Grease and fat clogs are more common in kitchen sinks, but can also build up in bathtub and shower drains. Pouring a cup of table salt or baking soda followed by boiling water can help break up these compounds and allow the drain to work again.

For larger clogs, try using a plastic snake or manual hand auger. First, remove any drain stoppers, then feed the cable into the clogged drain by hand. You can also try the old fashioned method of melting away a clog by pouring boiling water down the drain. If all else fails, consider calling a professional plumber to get your drains flowing again.

Leaky Faucets

The drip-drip-drip of a leaky faucet can drive you crazy—not to mention add up to a huge water bill. It’s important to address leaking faucets as soon as you notice them, since the constant dripping can cause serious water damage over time.

Start by shutting off the water supply valves under the sink. Next, watch the dripping to see where it’s coming from. If it’s from the handle (3) or the top stem (4), remove the handle to access these parts. If it’s from the base (5), you’ll need to unscrew and remove the dome-shaped cap (6) by placing a cloth over the cap for grip or using tongue-and-groove pliers. This will expose the round metal stem (7) and the cam and packing (8), which can be replaced to resolve the leak.

If the leaking continues, try replacing the washers (9) or O-rings (10). If the leaking is coming from the actual pipes, you may need to call in a professional plumber for help. Leaking pipes are usually caused by worn or loose parts, corrosion in the valve seat, or a blocked aerator.

Water Heater Issues

It’s a homeowner’s worst nightmare: turning on the shower and discovering no hot water. Unchecked, this problem can wreak havoc on households and cause expensive water damage to wood and masonry.

Whether the issue stems from faulty thermostats, mineral deposits, or a heating element malfunction, plumbing services can diagnose and repair the problem quickly. In some cases, this may require replacing the entire unit.

Leaking pipes can be a major nuisance, but it’s a problem that’s often easy to overlook because many signs are subtle. Leaks from corroded joints, poor fittings, and even just ageing can cause costly problems including water bill spikes, serious water damage to the home’s structure, and the growth of mold and mildew.

A dripping faucet can drive homeowners insane with its constant, annoying rhythm. A plumber will examine the situation and determine whether the drip is caused by a faulty valve, worn washers, or a clogged drain. The best thing to do is shut off the water and wear protective gear before attempting to fix any plumbing problem. This will prevent a DIY disaster from turning into a bigger, costlier repair job.

Low Water Pressure

If your water pressure is low, it can make showering feel like a chore and washing dishes take forever. Sometimes this problem is caused by a clog or a leak, but it can also be due to too much demand for water from household members or a broken water line.

The first thing to do if you’re experiencing low water pressure is to check your shut-off valves. If your home has multiple water valves, start at the main house water line shut-off and work your way through each fixture and faucet in your home to see if there’s a particular area with low water pressure.

It could also be a sign that you have too many water-consuming appliances and fixtures hooked up to the same line. If this is the case, you can talk to family members to see if they can reduce their use of water so that everyone in the house has adequate supply and high water pressure.

Another possibility is that you have a corroded pipe and it needs to be replaced. This is usually a job for a professional plumber as the pipes need to be removed and re-piped in order to fix the problem.

Running Toilet

When the toilet keeps running, it’s more than an annoyance; it wastes water and increases your utility bills. You can save money by turning off your water at the shut-off valve. This is usually a knob behind the toilet connected to your water line. This step should be done annually to ensure it is working properly.

A running toilet is often caused by a defective flapper valve or fill valve. This can be easily fixed by replacing the flapper or making a simple adjustment to the fill valve.

It is also possible that your toilet is running because of a blockage, which could be solved with a plunger or drain snake. If you have tried these methods and your running toilet persists, contact a plumber for assistance.

These common plumbing problems are easy to identify and resolve with some basic troubleshooting knowledge. You can prevent most of these issues by performing regular maintenance in your home, such as cleaning the drain screens regularly to keep them free from hair, soap scum, and other debris. If you do encounter a plumbing issue, always shut off your water immediately to reduce damage and call a professional right away, a professional, for instance, being experts akin to the Garland plumbers.

Clogged Toilets

Clogged toilets are often caused by foreign objects like wipes, cotton swabs, paper towels, and other items that should never be flushed. These products create a huge problem for your home plumbing system and even the larger sewage pipes when they are not removed promptly. A licensed plumber can help solve this issue and prevent ongoing problems with your toilets, drains, and sewer lines.

Most clogs can be resolved by using basic methods such as plunging the toilet or using a drain snake to break up and remove the clog. However, if your toilet clogs repeatedly or you can’t seem to get the clog clear, it may be time to call in a professional plumber.

One quick and cheap way to fix a toilet clog is to use liquid soap to loosen the clog. This method is effective because the slippery nature of liquid soap allows it to lubricate and break up debris stuck in your pipes. To do this, fill a container with hot water (not boiling) and place it close to your toilet. Add some liquid soap and let it sit for a few minutes before trying to flush the toilet again. Repeat as necessary until the clog is removed and the water level in your toilet returns to normal.

Sewer Backups

Sewer backups can cause serious damage to your home and require extensive cleanup and repair. They can also be very dangerous, especially for children and the elderly. Thankfully, you can avoid sewer backups by taking preventative measures and understanding the common causes of these problems.

The sewer, or wastewater, lines that connect your home to the city line need to be able to move waste away from your sinks, toilets, and tubs. If they become blocked or breached, sewage will back up into your home, causing contamination and potentially leading to expensive repairs.

There are many signs that your sewer line is in trouble. Slow drains throughout your home are a big indicator, as well as gurgling noises when you flush a toilet or run water in a bathtub or shower. A sour smell in the air is another sign that sewage is backing up into your home.

Sewage backups are a serious problem that should be addressed immediately. If you’re facing this issue, shut off your home’s main water valve and call a plumber right away. To avoid future issues, it’s important to reevaluate how you dispose of grease and other solids in your home and only put water and waste down the drains that are designed to handle them.