4 Top Causes of Emergency Plumbing Repairs
Emergency Plumbing Repairs That Homeowners Need to Avoid
Few maintenance issues are as inconvenient and troubling as plumbing emergencies. We use water for drinking, cooking, bathing, washing clothes and dishes, and so much more. To stop all these tasks for an unknown period until repairs can be made is extremely stressful at any time of the year. While plumbing maintenance might occasionally be necessary, preventing them from becoming emergencies is largely a matter of awareness.
Emergency Plumbing Repairs #1: Water Heater
Generally, water heater problems are caused by two factors, water supply impurities and time. The local water supply contains various minerals, and the presence of these minerals gives the water a slight negative electrical charge.
- Over time, this charge corrodes the sides of the tank and, eventually, the tank is weakened and leaks.
- Over time, some of the minerals settle out of the water and are deposited at the base of the tank. Should enough sediment accumulate, it can interfere with heating efficiency—burrrrr!
Research the age of your water heater and begin preparing for replacement after about 10 years. It is also helpful to know a little about the quality of the local water supply.
Emergency Plumbing Repairs #2: Clogged Sinks and Toilets
Minor clogs cause the drain to run slowly, and a major clog stops it altogether. Most major clogs are preceded by minor clogs. Clogs are generally caused by substances that are added to the draining water.
- In the kitchen, avoid using the drain for food disposal. Oils and fats are particularly troublesome since they will congeal inside the drain as they cool. They are very sticky and will collect food particles flowing by.
- In the toilet, toilet paper is okay, but avoid flushing “flushable wipes” and feminine products.
- In sinks, tubs, and showers, collecting hair before it enters the drain is a great preventative measure.
- When toys, items of clothing, or the occasional iPod is accidentally dropped into the toilet, be aware of potential problems.
The average home flushes and drains many products which can lead to trouble, so train the family about items to avoid.
(Harsh chemical drain products should be avoided since they can damage pipes and cause injuries.)
Emergency Plumbing Repairs #3: Clogged Lateral Drain
The sewer line leading from the home to the municipal sewer is often referred to as a lateral line. A clog in the lateral line often causes the water to back up into the home and creates a tremendous mess. There are several telltale indicators of potential problems with your lateral line.
- Wastewater provides both water and valuable nutrients for plant life. Trees or shrubs planted on or near the path of the lateral line will often find an opening into the drain line and fill the line with roots.
- As the lateral line is filling with roots, it will cause all the drains in the home to drain more slowly.
Do not ignore slow drains and be more vigilant to avoid problem products until the problem is solved.
Emergency Plumbing Repairs #4: Frozen Pipes
Although South Texans rarely experience temperatures cold enough to freeze pipes, recent history has provided some exceptions. Whenever a power outage shuts off the furnace there are some steps to take that can prevent pipes from freezing. The water supply is carried to a few locations around the home, so it is important to protect the entire system.
- Know where water enters the home, as this can be the most vulnerable spot for the water to freeze.
- It must be extremely cold for moving water to freeze, so allow a drip or trickle of water from each faucet until the power is restored.
- Open cabinets and vanities. The warmth in the home will help keep the pipes warmer.
We hope that you never experience a plumbing emergency, but we are here to assist as needed.
Let Doctor Cool Be Your GO-TO for Emergency Plumbing Repairs
Let Doctor Cool help with your Emergency Plumbing Repairs question before buying your home. Call Doctor Cool & Professor Heat today at 281-338-8751 or email Doctor Cool and let our professional Residential Plumber Contractors assist with all of your plumbing repair questions.