Plumbing is a topic that many homeowners will have to deal with during the course of their homes’ lives. Problems can range from dripping faucets to burst pipes and the following list will highlight some of the most common problems homeowners face when dealing with plumbing issues.
Dripping faucets are the number one source of wasted water in the household, wasting more than 28 gallons per day for each dripping tap, according to the EPA. You should always take care of dripping faucets right away before they turn into a more serious issue and require repairs. A quick fix can be a new washer or a kit from your local home improvement store.
Homeowners should be careful with how they dispose of items such as coffee grinds and stringy, fibrous materials. These types of materials can clog drains and should be disposed of accordingly.
Start with a plunger to remove any clogs before calling a professional, and if you live in an older home it might be time for that drain snaking you’ve been putting off. Blockages due to tree roots can sometimes not even be removed by plungers/drain cleaners, so for this you’ll need the help of a plumber who will use an auger (or “snake”) to clear out the root blockage.
Toilet leaks will waste not only water but also the homeowner’s money. It is suggested that you check under your toilet for leaks regularly, paying special attention to the area around the base of your toilet.
A quick way to check for toilet leaks is by pouring a small amount of food coloring into the tank. If there are any leaks, color will begin to appear in the bowl within a few minutes. It is advised that any toilet leak be taken care of as soon as possible.
Toilets are usually easy to fix – especially on newer models – so go ahead and replace those water-guzzling toilet parts and you’ll be good to go.
Water heater issues
One of the most common plumbing-related issues that homeowners face is a malfunctioning hot water heater. A quick way to tell if your water heater is having problems is if the pilot light is out or if there are any obvious leaks. You can also check your water heater’s temperature gauge to ensure that it is not too hot or too cold. If your model uses natural gas, it might simply need its pilot light relit after being turned off for an extended period of time.
If you suspect that your water heater may be on the fritz, contact a licensed plumber as soon as possible.
Water pressure can drop on older homes if galvanized piping corrodes from rust buildup on the inside lining – replace these aged pipes with corrosion-resistant polyethylene cladded steel piping, which resists corrosion and scale buildup.
No insulation around hot water pipes
Water heaters work by heating up water, which then travels out through the house – make sure you’ve insulated your home’s hot-water pipes to help keep that temperature consistent and safe for your family. Insulation can also prevent overheating of faucets, showers, or decorative ponds on exterior walls.
Replacing an old toilet will save money in the long run – on average, a high-efficiency toilet can save 4,000 gallons of water over its lifetime compared to the older 3.5-gallon models. If it’s time for new showerheads or faucets, choose models with WaterSense certification so you know they are saving water without compromising performance.
Overflowing the toilet
Don’t put toilet paper, facial tissue, or even feminine hygiene products down your toilet. They might be convenient to flush down the toilet, but they will wreak havoc on your plumbing system.