Dealing with a plumbing emergency, especially pipe leaks, is never easy. It can be stressful, overwhelming and downright costly. Knowing the causes of leaks can help homeowners avoid them, which is why we’ve decided to publish this article. Read to know why your plumbing leaks and what you can do to avoid them. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with a plumber in your area.
Causes of Leaks in Your Plumbing
Some of the things we’ve mentioned below you may have already known. It’s always nice to be reminded of them so that you avoid making the same mistakes.
Not Insulating Unprotected Pipes
This can be avoided when a homeowner proactively does something to protect the pipes from freezing, expanding and then bursting. If you don’t insulate the pipes during winter or when the temperature starts freezing, the water inside the pipes will freeze in no time, causing the pipes to expand and burst. The last thing you want is frozen pipes as this usually leads to them breaking if you don’t call a plumber right away to thaw them.
Water damage can cost a fortune in replacements and repairs. Imagine how much it would cost when you damage electronic devices or furniture because of a plumbing leak. Or the cost of having to call restoration companies to avoid mold growth in the basement. When the damage is serious, you could also end up buying or repairing pipes, which will cost you more.
If you want to avoid more plumbing expenses, take time off to ensure your plumbing is ready for winter. Cover them with some insulating blanket to keep them warm, or why not turn on the faucet slightly, so that warm water can flow through the pipes and prevent them from freezing? You can also open the cabinet doors for heated air to warm the pipes and prevent them from freezing. Don’t forget to also insulate your outdoor plumbing, even faucets located outside.
High Water Pressure
High water pressure doesn’t just waste hundreds of gallons of water each day, it’s also bad for the plumbing pipes. A water pressure that’s higher than 60 PSI is already considered high and must be corrected ASAP or it’s going to eventually strain the pipes, causing them to break or burst. You may even have to face serious water damage when you have older pipes at home.
Get a water pressure gauge to let you check your home’s water pressure levels. Make sure the result is just between 40 and 60 PSI. If it’s lower than 40, consider calling a professional for leak detection. There could already be a leak somewhere in your plumbing especially when the water bill is also unusually higher.
For homeowners with older pipes, we recommend replacing them with either copper or PVC piping, the types of pipes that are less susceptible to damage and rust. Contact a licensed professional as well to help you install new pipes. Try not to DIY the installation or hire an unqualified person or you might end up paying for more repairs.
The tree roots themselves don’t cause the leak but there will be catastrophic damage when there’s a leak in your plumbing and these roots are near the pipes. Tree roots are attracted to water or moisture, so a tiny leak is enough for them to infiltrate the pipes and cause major water damage.
If there are trees near your home, we suggest you get in touch with professionals so they can inspect your property and recommend the right solutions.
Shift in Foundation
Homeowners don’t have control over this but they can prevent further problems by getting a regular plumbing inspection. Get an inspection after a major storm or every year to determine if your plumbing is in excellent shape or if there might be issues that need to be addressed immediately.
Repairs or Installations by Unqualified People
When you need major repairs or installations, we recommend hiring a licensed plumber only to ensure the task is properly carried out. Unqualified people may cut corners when it comes to repairs or installations, which could lead to even more problems down the road. They may not be fully equipped to properly do the job well.
To avoid leaks and other problems with your plumbing, hire a licensed professional only. Make sure he’s fully qualified, has years of experience, and is fully insured and equipped to do major plumbing repairs or installations.
Plumbing projects are okay as long as it doesn’t involve major repairs or installations. Minor tasks you can do at home include repairing a small clog or unclogging the toilet or fixing a small leak in the faucet. However, make sure you also use proper plumbing tools for this. For all other projects, contact a professional only.
Clogs can also lead to water damage when not addressed and especially when you have older pipes or when you keep using chemical-based drain cleaners. Get a professional drain cleaning service to effectively get rid of a major clog. Install strainers to catch debris and dirt that cause a clog. You can also consider installing a garbage disposal to help you effectively manage food waste.
Protecting Your Home from Plumbing Leaks
Plumbing emergencies can be really costly but thankfully, they can be avoided. Below are some of our tips to help you avoid these costly plumbing emergencies.
- Monitor your bill. The first thing you will have to do is to monitor your bill every month. Are you getting the usual bill or is it unusually higher? If it’s high and you’re certain you have not been using a lot of your water recently, there could be a leak somewhere. Check your water first if your water bill is higher. When there’s low water pressure, there’s likely a leak. The next step is to get in touch with a plumbing expert for professional leak detection. Our team is equipped with the right tools, experience and training to help us locate the leak and fix it for you. Let us know if you suspect issues with your plumbing and we’re more than happy to offer assistance at your earliest convenience. We’ll quickly dispatch a plumber to your location.
- Insulate your plumbing. You’re probably already aware of why you need to protect exposed pipes during winter. When it’s extremely cold and your pipes are not properly insulated, chances are the water inside these pipes can freeze and they will expand and burst. Go to a local hardware store and get some insulating blankets you can use to cover the pipes. Flowing water also prevents water from freezing so we recommend you slightly open the faucet so that warm water can flow through the pipes. For maximum protection, we recommend opening the cabinet doors as well and don’t turn off your heating. The warm air should warm the pipes as well, preventing the water from freezing and causing major damage to your home. Remember, water damage can cost you a fortune in repairs and replacement appliances but you can prevent this by taking good care of your plumbing pipes.
- Get a water pressure regulator. Low water pressure can indicate a leak in your plumbing but high water pressure isn’t good news either. It can cause severe damage to the pipes, especially when you still have older pipes installed. We recommend getting a water pressure regulator to help you regulate your home’s water pressure. You call a plumber in your area if you don’t know how to install this in your home. After installing the water pressure regulator, make sure you still monitor your plumbing. If you suspect there might still be issues with it, please don’t hesitate to call us anytime. We have a team of plumbing experts who can thoroughly inspect your plumbing and ensure it’s in excellent shape. If we find problems, our team will also correct them on the same day. Don’t worry, we’re also fully equipped so need to call us again to set up an appointment. For homeowners who have moved into an old home and have older pipes, we recommend getting in touch with a professional as well for pipe replacement. Modern pipes such as PVC and copper aren’t just durable, which means they are less susceptible to damage and rust. They also last longer. You’ll have peace of mind knowing you won’t have to keep worrying about pipes breaking because you are stronger and won’t break easily.
- Install leak detection devices. If you still don’t have leak detection devices at home, we suggest you install them the soonest possible time as they can be helpful in ensuring your plumbing doesn’t have any leaks. You’ll need to connect these devices to your mobile phones or tablets so that you get alerts every time it detects a leak in your plumbing or when it detects any abnormal activities in your plumbing system. Call a plumber if you want to know more about these leak detection devices or when you’re ready to install one for your home. Feel free to get in touch with us as well if you have questions. We’re more than happy to help out.
- Never ignore plumbing issues no matter how minor you think they are. This one is quite easy and yet some homeowners still fail to do this. If you think there might be some issues with your plumbing system, be sure to contact a plumber right away. Don’t wait for the problem to become a major plumbing emergency that will cost you a lot of money. Also, try not to ignore faucet leaks to avoid wasting hundreds of gallons of water. If your toilet doesn’t stop running, make sure you get it fixed immediately. You can also test for toilet leaks by pouring a few drops of food coloring into the toilet tank. Wait for about 15 minutes before checking the toilet bowl and if the water’s color changed. If it did, there’s likely a leak in your plumbing.
- Maintain your water heater. Homeowners still using a water heater tank must know how to properly maintain their unit. You need to flush the water heater at least once a year to get rid of the mineral buildup that can lead to other issues with your unit. It’s also important to call a plumber to get your unit professionally inspected. A plumbing expert can check your water heater for any problems and will fix that asap. He will also check if your water is clean and not contaminated.
- Switch to tankless water heaters. If your water heater tank is more than 7 or 10 years old, we recommend switching to the tankless version. Without a tank, you won’t have to worry about leaks in your plumbing. A tankless water heater is also the more energy-efficient option as you’re not using electricity all the time. It only consumes energy when you actually turn on the shower or the tap. Also, you don’t need a bigger space because you can install the water heater on the bathroom wall. For installation though, make sure you only hire a licensed professional for it to avoid issues with incorrect installation.
Contact Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Fort Worth
Do you need a plumber for your home or business? We are an established plumbing company that offers both residential and commercial plumbing services including professional drain cleaning service, leak detection and plumbing inspections. We can handle any repair job, big or small. Our plumbing team is also fully equipped, highly trained and has years of experience in the industry. We are your go-to plumbing experts for everything plumbing-related.
If you’re looking for a qualified professional who can get the job done right on time and effectively, call Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Fort Worth today for an appointment.
See our previous blog on this topic here.
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Why A Plumber Recommends To Be Mindful Of The Water Pressure Levels
When it comes to your plumbing, one of the things you should monitor is the water pressure levels. We recommend having a water pressure gauge handy to help you determine your home’s water pressure levels to determine if there might be problems that will need to be fixed right away. Read this article to know what you need to monitor your home’s water pressure levels, how to detect leaks and how to avoid paying costly repairs or replacements due to water damage. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with a licensed plumber in the area.
Why High Water Pressure Is Bad News for Your Plumbing
What are your home’s water pressure levels? The normal range is between 40-60 PSI. Anything lower or higher is a cause for concern. A water pressure that’s lower than 40 PSI means you have low water pressure. This usually indicates a leak in your plumbing especially when accompanied by a higher water bill. When the water pressure is low, we recommend calling a professional for leak detection. A plumber should be able to help you detect leaks and locate this leak and fix it. Never postpone any repairs for you might end up with an even bigger repair down the road.
In some cases, low water pressure could mean you need to repair or replace the faucet. When the water pressure is low and your water bill isn’t high, the problem could be just the water fixture. We recommend checking all your water fixtures first to determine if the problem is only in one fixture. Call a plumber so they can inspect this and repair it. If it’s an old fixture, he might ask you to get it replaced.
Clogs or sediment can also cause low water pressure. If you have older pipes, we recommend having them inspected so that you can get advice on whether you should repair the pipes or get more modern piping. A good option would be to get either PVC or copper pipes. Feel free to get in touch with us so we can help you make an informed decision about your plumbing.
Problems with high water pressure:
A water pressure that’s too high — above 60 PSI, is bad for the pipes, especially older pipes. It will only strain the pipes and cause them to burst. If you want to avoid a catastrophic plumbing leak, we recommend getting a water pressure regulator to help you fix the water pressure problem. You can also call a plumbing expert to inspect your plumbing for any issues that lead to high water pressure problems. Don’t worry, our plumbing experts are experienced and experts and what they do. We can help you locate the leak or fix it for you permanently. We can assist with new pipe installations as well should a plumber recommend you replace yours.
High water pressure doesn’t just damage the pipes. You can waste hundreds of gallons of water if you don’t fix high water pressure. This can significantly translate to higher water bills eventually. And of course, don’t wait for high water pressure to cause significant damage to your pipes. You need to call us immediately so we can help you alleviate the problem.
How to Know There Are Leaks in Your Plumbing
Below are some of the common signs there’s a leak in your plumbing. You better contact a plumber the soonest possible time to avoid an even bigger repair. And that’s what we’re here for. If you suspect repairs in your plumbing, call us immediately so we can do a thorough inspection of your system.
Watch out for the signs below:
High Water Bill
One of the indications of a leak in your plumbing is a higher water bill. If your bill this month is unusually higher and there’s low water pressure as well, call a plumbing expert immediately for professional leak detection. Don’t wait for months or you could end up with an even bigger repair. After fixing your plumbing, continue monitoring your water bill to ensure everything is in good shape. If you find there are issues that need to be addressed right away, we recommend you call us immediately for help.
If you see water spots in the walls or in the ceiling, that could also be a sign of a leak in your plumbing. It’s better to get your plumbing inspected immediately to avoid further serious issues down the road.
And of course, watch out for pooling water near the water heater and plumbing pipes as that could be the leak in your plumbing. Call a professional immediately if there are hidden leaks that need to be addressed.
Check all of your appliances or fixtures for any signs of wear and tear, damage or leaks and call a professional immediately if you suspect a leak. You can also install a leak detection device to help you find leaks in your plumbing. These devices are placed near plumbing appliances or fixtures and are connected to your mobile phone or tablet so that you get alerts in case it suspects a leak in your plumbing. Talk to us if you’re planning to install one in your home so that we can help you make an informed decision on which leak detection device to purchase.
What to Do When the Pipes Burst
One of the biggest plumbing emergencies you may encounter is a pipe leak. It can leak due to high water pressure, clogs, wear and tear, damage or when it’s frozen. The first thing you need to do when your home starts flooding is to not panic. Instead, turn off the water supply to prevent further damage to your plumbing. Then turn off all faucets and drain the water heater to ensure the pipes are drained of water. Next, contact a trusted plumber who can repair the leak.
Depending on the damage, you may call other professionals to prevent mold growth in the basement or some parts of your home. Always hire a licensed professional to ensure the problem is permanently fixed and to make sure he doesn’t cut corners during the repair process. And this is where we come in. Our plumbing experts are extremely good at what they do. Let us take care of all plumbing repairs and rest assured your plumbing will be in excellent shape in no time.
Why It’s Necessary to Maintain the Water Heater Tank
Homeowners with water heater tanks must make sure their units are properly maintained. Once a year, you must drain the water heater tank to get rid of the sediment that accumulates in the tank. If you don’t remove this sediment buildup, you’ll have less space for hot water and will keep running out of hot water. It’s also important to hire a plumber to professionally inspect the water heater and ensure its heating elements are still in good condition. He will also check if you have clean water.
When the sediment isn’t removed, the water heater tank may also become damaged, leading to a catastrophic plumbing emergency. You can avoid this by ensuring your water heater is properly maintained. If your unit is more than 10 years old though, we recommend replacing that with a new, efficient unit to save money and avoid costly repairs. Call a plumbing expert for installation.
Water Leaks Prevention
Below are a few things you can do to avoid leaks in the basement or anywhere in your home due to water damage:
Switch to Tankless Water Heaters
How old is your water heater? If your water heater is more than 7 or 10 years old or is no longer that efficient, we recommend getting a new one. Some homeowners would prefer to go with the tankless water heater to avoid leaks in the basement. They will have peace of mind knowing they don’t have a huge tank that they need to watch out for.
Just make sure you get professional installation for your new water heater to avoid problems including leaks. You also get to save energy with the tankless unit because you only use energy when you turn on the faucet or the shower, making it one of the more energy-efficient options. You get to save space as well because you can install the water heater on the bathroom wall. Compared to the tank-type water heater, the tankless version also lasts longer, twice as the tank-type water heater. The only downside is that it’s more expensive. However, do you get to save more money in the long run because it lasts longer and you pay less for your utility bill?
Hire Licensed Professionals Only
When getting repairs or installations, we recommend hiring a licensed professional only to ensure the task is properly carried out. Plumbing experts don’t cut corners when it comes to repairs or installations and you also get a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Never DIY your plumbing nor hire an unlicensed person to do major repairs or installations. When he makes mistakes, you might not just end up with water damage, you may also end up replacing some of your appliances and this will cost you even more money.
You can always trust us and rely on us when you need plumbing experts to take care of repairs or installations in your home. Our team is equipped with the right skills and experience to ensure the task is permanently resolved. We’re also fully insured for your peace of mind.
Protect Your Plumbing
Protecting your plumbing can go a long way. Some of the best practices you can do include insulating the plumbing pipes during the winter season so that the water inside them doesn’t freeze. Try to also slightly open the faucets so that warm water can flow through the plumbing pipes. If there are problems, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a professional so they can inspect and fix your plumbing.
When using an appliance for the first time, always read the manual to make sure you’re doing things right. Call a professional if you have questions so they can help you resolve them.
Install Several Shut-off Valves
Shut-off valves are useful when there are leaks in your plumbing because they stop the water from flowing through the pipes and prevent further damage to your plumbing. However, these shut-off valves are usually installed in the basement which can make it more difficult for you to turn them off. We recommend installing several of these devices and putting them near your water heater, plumbing pipes, dishwasher, toilet and other appliances. Don’t forget to also test them to make sure they actually work. If you need a professional to install these devices don’t hesitate to get in touch with us anytime.
Monitor the Water Pressure Levels
As mentioned, you need to get a water pressure gauge to check the water pressure levels in your plumbing and a water pressure regulator to regulate your home’s water pressure levels. If possible, replace older pipes as well to prevent more damage to your plumbing and always call licensed professionals for installation. If you have more questions or need more assistance, please call us today.
Contact Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Fort Worth Today
Do you need a plumber in the area? We’re just here to help. We are the trusted plumbing experts in your area because we make sure the problem is resolved within the same day. Our plumbing team is also fully insured for your peace of mind and fully equipped to properly carry out the task. We can take care of any repairs, however minor or complex it is. We can also install major plumbing appliances including water heaters and garbage disposals. Most importantly, we can help with professional leak detection, drain cleaning and to regulate your home’s water pressure levels.
If you need a plumber that can solve all of your plumbing problems, call Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Fort Worth today for an appointment.
See our previous blog on this topic here.
Photo By Irina Gutyryak at Shutterstock
How Do I Know When To Call A Plumber Near Me?
As you take into consideration your home’s current plumbing situation, realize that you can get help from a plumber for a variety of situations. When should I get a plumber near me to come out to the home? Calling a plumber should not be something you put off. If you are unsure if you need one or you think you can handle it yourself, call them. Not only does this often save you time and money, but it may also help ensure that you do not end up needing emergency repairs down the road due to a worsening situation.
There Is a Water Leak
One of the most important times to look for a plumber is when you have a water leak. A small leak – even just a drip from the faucet or a moist surface on a pipe – can cause significant damage to your home. That small drip can lead to saturation of the carpeting, floorboards, and drywall. Over just a few hours, the risk of it becoming mold increases substantially. Without a doubt, this means more extensive repairs and a health risk to your home.
Another key reason to find a plumber near me instead of putting it off is that a water leak can cause your water bills to rise quickly. A simple little drip in the bathroom sink can lead to gallons of water lost over time. That means your water bills are likely to be high, and it also means that you are wasting a precious resource.
Your Water Bills Are Higher than Normal
If you see a sudden spike in your water bills, that is another reason to call a plumber sooner rather than later. This could indicate a leak or a broken line is occurring somewhere in your home’s plumbing system. You may not notice it. For example, the main water line coming into your home may have developed a leak due to pressure or a tree root growing into it. When that happens, you may be losing water on a consistent basis without realizing it. In this situation, the dirt may be constantly saturated.
You may notice your water bill go up, though, if that break in the water line happens after your meter. For example, let’s say you have a broken line behind your home at one of the outdoor spigots. You may not notice water pooling there, but the ground may be soft. You may have a very high water bill, though, and no idea why.
Your plumber can often provide you with steps and strategies for lowering your water bill, too. This may include the addition of energy-efficient and low-water faucets and showerheads for your home. This is a very easy way for you to see a big difference in what you are spending.
There Is Structural Damage to Your Pipes
Whether inside or outside your home, any type of damage to your water pipes can be problematic, even if they are not leaking. While it may seem simple enough to remove the pipe and replace it yourself, the small changes can lead to bigger problems later.
For example, you may have a water line that is bent or one that is no longer aligned properly. When this occurs, it leads to the water not flowing properly and, over time, it can weaken the pipes, leading to problems with leaks later.
Your Sink Takes a Long Time to Drain
You also want to call a plumber near me if you notice a change in the way that water flows down your drains. If it seems to take a long time for water to go down the sink drain, that may indicate a problem with the sewer lines. If this is happening in just one sink in your home, there is likely a clog in that drain line. That may be easier to fix than others.
If there is more than one drain that is now moving normally, and it seems to take a few minutes for it to empty, or it does not empty at all, that may indicate a larger system-wide problem. That is harder to fix, but it is equally as important to fix right away. This may involve snaking or flushing the lines to move the blockage and clean the interior of the plumbing lines. Doing this can drastically improve the flow of water, and you should not see any delay in the process.
Avoid trying to clean these bigger problems out yourself. Using any type of chemical poured into the drain is dangerous and may cause more harm than good, often weakening the lines significantly.
There Is Water Coming Up Your Drains
This is another common problem, and it often occurs as a result of a blockage occurring at some point in the system past the point it is. For example, you may have a clog or blockage in the main sewer line that leads from your home to the street. If that is occurring, it could indicate a serious amount of damage that could cause the sewer to back up into your home.
Sewer water in your home is more than just a flooding problem. There are bacteria present, and mold can grow within just a matter of hours. Having a professional inspect and repair this problem is essential not only to clean your lines but also to protect the overall integrity of your home’s foundation, plumbing system, and health. Getting help from a professional will not only resolve the problem now but also help to prevent it from occurring again.
Call a Trusted Plumber Right Away for Help
Do you need a plumber near me? Start with calling Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Fort Worth. Our trusted, experienced professionals are available to work closely with you to better understand your needs and goals. With emergency service available, you do not have to put off getting the type of plumbing service you need.
See our most recent blog on this topic here.
Photo By FaberrInk at istock
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