How to Prevent the Most Common Plumbing Emergencies
Plumbing is a practically invisible part of most homes that residents quickly forget about, especially when it’s working well. Turning a tap for water, putting laundry in a machine to wash, or flushing a toilet once done are all things 21st century Americans take for granted.
But when things go wrong, those same people quickly find out just how much of their modern home life is dependent on indoor plumbing. What if you had to leave your house every time you needed to relieve yourself?
What if there was no safe drinking water? What if hot water didn’t exist? These things can and do happen to indoor plumbing, but there are things you can do to prevent these emergency plumbing issues.
The Leaking Fixture
In most cases, you’re not going to spot a leaking fixture ahead of time, but you’ll certainly notice it once it happens. That constant dripping may drive you crazy, but, more importantly, it will cost you money when that water bill comes in at the end of the month.
It’s a good thing that a leaking fixture doesn’t take much time or money to repair. You could get a plumber to do it for you, but often you can do it yourself.
Leaking fixtures are usually the result of small, easily replaceable parts needing to be switched out. Just get a wrench, buy a new washer or O-ring, and swap the parts out. You’re done!
The Blocked Drain
This particular emergency is very, very preventable. But only if you don’t ignore the warning signs. A blocked drain means water is no longer going down the pipe and emptying out a sink when you pull the plug.
In most situations, you will receive advance warning this was coming in the form of “the slow drain.” The slow drain is when a build-up in a kitchen or bathroom sink, usually due to either food or hair, sticks to the pipe instead of flowing away.
More and more matter sticks and that build-up eventually slows the flow of water draining out. Careful use of drain cleaner on slow drains can prevent a more serious blockage in the future.
The Overflowing Toilet
In most cases, you’ll get very little warning that a toilet has become blocked and is going to overflow.
Usually, when this happens, it’s because of an accident, such as an unsupervised child playing with a toilet and flushing things down.
Other times, it may be sheer apathy or ignorance; people have flushed everything from needles to disposable diapers down toilets. The best way to avoid an overflow is to make sure that only human waste goes down the toilet, not solid objects.
A Burst Pipe
A pipe bursting can be a very expensive problem to address. Fortunately, pipes are built to last, but they won’t last forever.
Very old pipes can break or burst simply because they’ve been in use for too long. If you have old, cast iron sewage pipes in your home, for example, it’s possible they’re already 100 years old or more! Time for a replacement!
In other cases, pipes burst because the temperature drops, and water freezes inside, which then expands as ice, causing a rupture. Insulating your vulnerable pipes is a great way to prevent this.
Professionally installed plumbing in a Winchester, VA will serve you for many years. But if things go wrong, do the right thing. Get professionals in to help if you need it.