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Your Water Heater Repair Guide

water heater being adjusted

Can Water Heaters be Repaired?

It’s always there. It always gave you what you needed and wanted. How could it just quit without any warning? What are we talking about? The water heater, that appliance that sits in a closet, in the basement, or in the laundry room, quietly doing its job of heating the water… until now. Do you have to replace it, or can water heaters be repaired?

Wait a minute, are we saying that water heater repairs are possible? Most people think when a water heater isn’t working, replacement is the only option, but that isn’t true. Yes, sometimes, some water heater repairs are possible. 

So, now you ask, “Should I repair or replace my water heater?”, and we’ll tell you that it all depends on what the problem is and the water heater age. If your water heater is 10 years old or more, and the water heater is not heating, yes, replacement is your best option. The average lifespan for a good water heater on a good water quality system is 8 to 12 years old. So, by 8 years old, water heater repair is futile. 

Who do you call for water heater repair? 

A plumber is the person you need to call for water heater repairs. Or, if you’re handy with basic tools, there are some water heater repairs you can do yourself. Like, some things you can do yourself when your water heater that isn’t heating the water. Here are 5 common issues and possible DIY fixes: 

1. No Power 

If you have an electric water heater, it could be a tripped circuit breaker or the circuit-style safety switch on the water heater thermostat. Check the plug from the water heater first, make sure it is securely plugged in, then check the circuit breaker and the safety switch. 

For a gas-powered water heater, it could be the pilot is out or the gas is off. The pilot light can be relit after making sure there is gas getting to the water heater. If there is electric or gas power to the water heater, then you’ll need a professional water heater repair service, or it may be time to buy a new water heater. 

2. Thermostat

This can be a little more challenging to determine because a thermostat isn’t as likely to fail. But this is something you can check yourself when your water heater quits heating water. Some water heaters have 1 thermostat and heating element, some have 2 thermostats and 2 heating elements. 

If you have a single-element water heater and the thermostat or element goes out, there is no hot water. If you have the two-element type of water heater and the top thermostat and element go out, you won’t get any hot water. 

There is a reset button on the outside of the water heater, the high-limit switch. If the water exceeds 180 degrees, it will shut off the water heater. If that is the case, then the thermostat needs to be replaced. Test this yourself by depressing that reset button. If it pops back out or shuts the electricity off by throwing a circuit breaker, it needs to be replaced. 

For a water heater that is less than 8 to 10 years old, there are videos online that will walk you through the process of replacing the thermostat. Or you can call a professional plumber for a water heater repair job. 

Are water heater elements universal? There are three types of water heater elements. Before starting a water heater repair, you should confirm with local codes which of the three types to get and if it should be 120 voltage or 240 voltage. The three types of water heater elements are: 

  • Bolt in
  • Clamp in
  • Screw in

3. Pilot Light

On a gas water heater, in addition to the gas being turned off or the pilot light going out, it could be the thermocouple. The thermocouple enables the pilot light to stay on, and the pilot light enables the thermocouple to keep hot. This generates a small electrical current that holds the gas valve open. When the pilot light goes out, that gas valve closes and prevents gas from getting to the burners that make the water hot. It is also a safety feature and keeps the gas from building up with no place to, like the pilot light. 

If the thermocouple goes bad, it will turn the pilot light off. Sometimes the gas valve on the water heater goes out. Either of these is a simple replacement by following online videos, or you can call a plumber for water heater repair. 

4. Temperature and Pressure-Relief Valve

The TPR (temperature and pressure-relief, is a safety feature on every water heater. Its job is to relieve any excess pressure from the water heater tank if the water temperature inside overheats. If this valve isn’t working, your water heater could explode. A leaking TPR valve is not to be ignored! 

 Replacing the TPR valve is a simple water heater repair, again, follow online video instructions or call for a water heater repair with a plumber. Experts recommend testing your TPR valve once a year to make sure it is in proper working order. 

5. Water Pressure

A water heater will quit working when the water pressure is too low or non-existent. Sometimes, the water pressure can be an issue because the TPR valve opens when the pressure or water temperature is too high. 

Another cause can be the main water supply if there isn’t a safety valve to the water connection. Or if your water supplier has a leak, either the city line or your well water line. 

A quick water heater repair could be as simple as the water line fitting has come loose, which you can tighten yourself. Check the thermostat setting too, if it has been lowered too much, that will lower the water pressure. 

6. Noisy Water Heater 

If your water heater makes noises like crackling, gurgling, hissing, or sizzling this is typically from sediment build-up inside the tank. This can be prevented by flushing your water heater annually by draining the tank. If you haven’t ever flushed the tank, a water heater repair probably isn’t possible. But try flushing it, it may help, if not, a new water heater is needed. 

Can you repair a leaking hot water heater?

A leaking water heater repair may be possible, depending on where it is leaking. If the tank is leaking from the top where water connections are, make sure they are tight. If they are, you can replace the connections. If the water heater is leaking from the drain valve located at the bottom of the water tank, this can be replaced too. If it is the tank itself leaking, this is not a water heater repair issue. You’ll need to replace the unit. 

water heating system

A Final Word

So, now if you’re wondering, “What water heater do I need?”, you should replace an electric water heater with an electric one and gas with gas. You can talk to a plumber about going with a tankless unit, which will require some changes to the water lines and the electrical and gas connections, making the installation more expensive.  Or you can replace it with the tank-style water heater, using this as a guideline to the size you need: 

  1. One-to-two-person household: 30-to-40-gallon size
  2. Two-to-three-person household: 40-to-50-gallon size
  3. Three-to-four-person household: 50-to-60-gallon size
  4. Five or more person household: 60-to-80-gallon size.

Regardless of what you decide to do, we can help you! If you need a plumber to help with water heater repair, give us a call at (770) 672-0095 today!

Why is my electric water heater not heating up?

a hot water heater and its connections in a home's basement

Keeping Your Water Heater in Shape

Electric powered or gas powered, the water heater is an important part of any household functioning, day in and day out. The water heater is one appliance that we give little thought about until it isn’t working. Today, we’re going to focus on electric-powered water heaters and when an electric water heater replacement is the best option.

Understanding Water Heater Issues

First though, let’s briefly review how an electric water heater works. This bit of knowledge can often answer the questions or how to address an issue or problem you’re having with your electric water heater. Sometimes, there are things you can do to get your electric water heater going again and save the expense of a new electric water heater replacement at the moment. 

A common question for plumbers is why electric water heaters keep tripping. There are five possible issues that are causing your water heater to continuously trip the circuit breaker: 

  1. The thermostat is bad: There is an upper thermostat and a lower thermostat on electric water heaters. The upper heating element is controlled by the upper thermostat and the lower heating element is controlled by the lower thermostat. The heating elements cycle on and off by design to keep the water hot inside the tank. The lower thermostat will get stuck “ON” and it doesn’t cycle on and off as designed. This causes heat to build up in the upper part of the tank, causing the reset button to trip. The good news with this, an electric water heater replacement isn’t necessary! Simply call a professional plumber to replace the bad lower thermostat. 
  2. The reset button is bad: Every water heater has a reset button that trips and cuts the power off when a water heater reaches a temperature higher than 180 F degrees. This is a safety feature, but the switch can weaken as it ages and misread the temperature, cutting the power off before the water reaches 180 F degrees. A professional plumber can determine if the reset button can be replaced or if you need an electric water heater replacement. 
  3. Faulty wiring: If there is aluminum wiring between the water heater and the electrical panel, it can cause electrical problems that will trip the circuit breaker. Water heaters today are made with copper wiring, and without a special lug connector, the two metals will fight each other, thus tripping the breaker. An electrician can rewire your electric panel to fix this problem and save you from having to purchase a new electric water heater replacement.
  4. The breaker is bad: Before you assume you need a new electric water heater replacement, have an electrician check the circuit breaker assigned to the water heater. While circuit breakers are made to last a long time, they don’t last forever. Replacing the circuit breaker assigned to the water heater may be the fix you need.
  5. The heating element has gone out: Remember, there are two heating elements in an electric water heater, and an electrical current runs through both to heat the water. These elements will wear out over time, causing the circuit to short and the break to trip. A professional plumber can replace the bad element, saving you from needing a new electric water heater replacement.

Another common problem is an electric water heater getting too hot. Water that gets overheated can burn or scald you or a family member, and additionally, damage the water heater. If the overheating isn’t addressed, you’ll find yourself buying an electric water heater replacement. When you notice the water getting too hot, check the following: 

  • Pressure too high: Every water heater has a PRV (pressure relief valve) and when it isn’t working right, the steam will build up inside the tank can cause the tank to burst, causing bodily and structural harm. If the water inside the tank seems to be boiling, contact a plumber immediately and turn the electricity off immediately. 
  • Temperature set too high: The thermostat on your water heater should never be higher than 120ºF, but that setting can get moved by accident. When the water feels too hot, check the temperature setting and if it is higher than 120º, dial it down. If that doesn’t fix the problem, call a plumber to inspect the water heater. It is possible the thermostat needs to be replaced or you need a new electric water heater replacement.
  • Sediment buildup: Water heaters will get a sediment buildup over time and this can affect the heating elements as the sediment covers them. That causes the water heater to work harder and can often overheat the water. A plumber can replace the elements and flush the water heater to fix the problem. Depending on the age of your water heater, an new electric water heater replacement may be the cheaper option. 

 Are electric water heater thermostats universal?

No, there are variations between electric water heater thermostats. Some electric water heaters have only one heating element and one thermostat. Others have dual heating elements and dual thermostats. The difference between lower and upper thermostats keeps them from being universal. 

How do you reset an electric water heater?

Every electric water heater will have a reset button, which is usually red and located by the thermostat. Some are behind insulation and a metal panel. To reset your electric water heater, simply press the red button and release it. 

How do you know when to replace an electric water heater?

There are five common indicators you need to purchase an electric water heater replacement: 

  1. The current electric water heater’s age. Typically at 10 years, an electric water heater replacement is needed, some will last 12 to 15  years if routine flushing is performed. 
  2. When the amount of hot water is getting less and less. 
  3. When the electric bill is increasing steadily each month for no obvious reason.
  4. When the TPR and water connections are corroded.
  5. When the water coming from the faucets is a brown-reddish color.
  6. If you’ve had to have more than one repair every 3 years. 

Can I install an electric water heater myself?

If you’re a hand DIY homeowner with basic household tools, yes, you could do your own electric water heater replacement. However, depending on where you live, the local municipality may require a permit for water heater installation. This will require the city to turn the water off until the installation is complete. They will then inspect the installation job before turning the water back on. 

For the safety of you and your home, having a professional plumber handle the electric water heater replacement installation is recommended from the electrical side. A wrong wire connection can damage the water heater or your home’s electrical system. 

What is needed to install an electric tankless water heater?

After you have determined the right size of electric tankless water heater needed for your home, you’ll need to address the additional amperage and voltage required. The unit will require special wiring to be installed and a separate circuit breaker. The plumbing is different for a tankless unit as well. It is for these reasons it is recommended to have a tankless water heater installed by a professional. 

close-up of a hose being attached to a hot water heater

At The End Of The Day – Are You Saving Money? 

And is a propane water heater cheaper than an electric? There is minimal difference in the operation cost between an electric water heater and a propane water heater. A propane water heater will cost approximately $80 less than an electric water heater.

How do I install plumbing in my bathroom?

plumber installing a bathtub faucet

The Importance of Good Plumbing

There are two rooms used in virtually every home every day: the kitchen and the bathroom. And in most homes, the bathroom is used more than the kitchen, making it probably the most important room in the home. That is what makes getting prompt and reliable bathroom plumbing repair so critical. Not being able to bathe, shower, brush your teeth, and most of all, use the toilet isn’t acceptable! 

So, we know the bathroom gets a lot of use, which means wear and tear are expected. The plumbing for the bathtub and shower is just as important as the plumbing to the sink and toilet, so when something isn’t working right, you automatically know you need bathroom plumbing repairs. 

Not all problems are that obvious though. Some things may be considered “characteristic” of an old house when in fact, it is an indication that bathroom plumbing repair should be done sooner than later. Here are six signs your bathroom plumbing needs repair.

Plumbing Pipes Knocking 

If the plumbing pipes are knocking as you shower or wash dishes, there could be problems with valves being loose or the water pressure is too high. Your plumbing has support straps to the wall joist behind the walls. If these come loose, plumbing will knock. While that may not seem to be a problem, if those pipes keep knocking, they are going to come loose at the joints. Then you’ll have a bigger problem, so getting professional bathroom plumbing repair service immediately is recommended. 

Low Water Pressure

When you turn the shower on in the morning, you expect a good steady and strong stream of water. However, when you get a weak stream, a drip, or nothing at all, then you may need bathroom plumbing repair. First, make sure the water is on at the main (did you pay your water bill or is the city having issues?), and make sure the showerhead isn’t clogged. If all of that comes up good, then yes, you need bathroom plumbing repairs. 

Continuous Dripping

If a sink, shower, or tub has a constant drip, it could need bathroom plumbing repair. This can be a DIY bathroom plumbing repair like replacing washers or it could be a problem with the water pressure being too high. While these may seem to be a minor issue, it can lead to some expensive, extensive, and permanent damage if not addressed immediately. Finding a bathroom repair contractor that knows how to repair bathroom plumbing can be done with an internet search of “residential plumbers in my area”. 

Slow Drainage

A slow drain is something that every homeowner will need to deal with at some point. Sometimes, there are quick bathroom repair tips of home remedies like baking soda and vinegar with boiling hot water to fix it. Sometimes, you need to get the plunger or plumber snake. Then other times, this bathroom plumbing repair needs professional plumbing help. 

Water Doesn’t Stay Hot

This is most likely your water heater, but it could be a plumbing leak from the hot water line. A professional plumber can inspect the situation and determine what type of bathroom plumbing repairs you need, including a new water heater. 

Discolored Water

When the water comes out of your faucets, you expect it to be clear and clean. When there is colored water coming out, you have some plumbing issues that some part of your home, underground, kitchen, or bathroom plumbing repair are needed. This is an immediate issue that needs the services of a plumber sooner than later. 

How does bathroom plumbing work?

While it may seem complicated to those of us that aren’t familiar with plumbing, there are just two significant parts to your bathroom plumbing. Among these is a clean incoming water supply. The plumbing system in your home is circulated water from the main valve that is connected to the city water supply. It is located just at your property line and is buried underground. It is under high pressure that allows it to reach each water connection within your home. 

Just before the water meter on your property, there is a shutoff valve. This is there for emergency kitchen and bathroom plumbing repairs. From there is a dedicated water pipe that supplies fresh water to your water heater. The primary function for the incoming water system is to supply your home with clean water when needed. 

The plumbing for your dirty outgoing wastewater is the other major component. Used water in your home will go down the drain, or the toilet, with gravity creating sufficient water pressure to drain the system completely. All out-going plumbing is angled so gravity pulls the wastewater out. The drain-wastewater system is more complex and detailed than the incoming water supply.  There are several components involved here including cleanouts, traps, and vents. Once the wastewater has reached the outside pipe, it is then transported to the city’s main sewer line and then flows to the city wastewater facility. 

How much does it cost to install plumbing for a bathroom?

Well, that can depend on how elaborate of a bathroom plumbing repair or remodeling you need. There are plumbing lines to be installed and run to the various drains and water outlets, and fixtures to install like faucets, sinks, and toilets, among others. 

The type of fixtures, how elaborate and intensive the installation is will affect the cost, as well as how many of each of these things need to be installed. On average, nationwide, the cost can start around $2,000 and reach $10,000 or higher. The basic average is around $5,000 for a basic faucet, sink, toilet, and a two-piece shower and tub system. 

plumber working on pipes underneath a bathroom sink

It’s All About The Experience

When it comes to bathroom repair prices, it can vary from plumber to plumber. An individual plumbing contractor may not be as expensive as a nationally known plumbing company. Once they have learned the plumbing trade, including how to repair bathroom faucets, and have received their certification and license, a plumber can venture out on their own or work for a company. If you’re searching for experienced and reliable help with your plumbing, you can reach out to us.

How Often Should Sewer Lines Be Cleaned?

Sink being plunged

The Need for Sewer Line Cleaning 

What can be more frustrating, and embarrassing, than to have the toilet stop up and overflow? Not to mention the nasty mess! Or what if the kitchen sink quits draining because of a grease build-up clog. It happens to all of us at some point in life – we’re either the one the toilet stops up or we’re the one that has to clean up and handle the sewer line cleaning

Does toilet paper clog sewer lines?

There are a few ways that toilet paper will clog a sewer line. First is using too much toilet paper and large amounts of human waste. (You know what we’re talking about). Yes, you want your toilet paper to be comfortable and absorbent, but it needs to be dissolvable too. When it doesn’t dissolve, it creates a blockage, and then you need a sewer line cleaning service. 

Another issue is a sewer line clogged with tree roots. Tree roots seek water, and if they pick up any hint of a small water leak, they will see that water and bust through the sewer line. Then as toilet paper and other matters are flushed, the toilet paper will eventually get snagged on a tree root. 

It’s only a matter of flushes and time before more gets snagged on that root or that toilet paper that is stuck starts blocking other matter from flowing on through. Before you know it, you’re calling a plumber for sewer line cleaning services. 

Then there are the no-no’s of what not to flush down a toilet, yet people will still do it. Disposable diapers are NOT flushable! Feminine sanitary products are not flushable. Nor are facial wipes or paper towels. Any of these will clog up a sewer line fast and you’ll be paying a plumber for a sewer line cleaning job over and over. 

How do you dissolve toilet paper in a sewer line?

Now that you know what will cause sewer lines to clog, with toilet paper being a common issue, we have good news for you! You don’t have to pay for professional plumbing for sewer line cleaning! Yes, there are ways to try and unclog your sewer line yourself, using these following techniques: 

  • A Plunger

Your first effort should be a toilet plunger for sewer line cleaning through the toilet. With both hands, gripping the plunger, press it firmly against the hole in the toilet bowl, and plunge with all the force you can. Usually, this get your sewer line cleaning of toilet paper clogs. 

  • A Plumber’s Snake

When the toilet plunger doesn’t do the trick, try a plumber’s snake. These can be in the kitchen sink, the outside sewer cleanout, the toilet, and the tub. Simply insert the snake in the toilet bowl hole and feed it through until you feel it hit the clog. Start turning the handle, the intention is to get the snake hooked on to whatever is clogging the toilet. Slow pull it out and it should have the clogging matter on the end. You may need to repeat this process 2 or 3 more times. 

  • A Chemical Additive

As a last resort of DIY sewer line cleaning, there are products you can purchase at your local big box home improvement store that are made specifically for dissolving toilet paper. Sometimes you’ll find it marketed as a septic tank additive. Be certain to follow the directions. 

Can you do sewer line cleaning with pressure washer? 

Absolutely! When the plunger, plumber’s snake or chemicals didn’t work for sewer line cleaning, get the power washer out!  You can purchase an attachment (called a sewer jetter) and the high pressure of the water will move through the pipes, breaking the clog up and send them on to the sewer system.

While the front jets are firing that high-pressure water into the clog, the back-firing jets are propelling the hose into the drain and are scrubbing the pipe insides. This method is one of the best for a sewer line clogged with grease, just power wash through the kitchen sink.

How often should sewer lines be cleaned?

The sewer lines for commercial property should have a professional sewer line cleaning every 20 months or so. Residential sewage lines aren’t typically used as heavily, and every 3 to 5 years should be sufficient, unless you have a lot of issues, like tree roots. For older homes with old trees around them, an annual sewer line cleaning is recommended. 

How much is sewer line cleaning?

Professional sewer line cleaning can cost anywhere between $175 and $500, with an average of around $320. If the plumber can accomplish the sewer line cleaning with a professional plumbers’ snake, the cost of that is typically just the service call, averaging around $100 and upward to $250 if after hours, a holiday, or weekends. 

Worker holding pipe and cleaning sewer

In Closing

We have provided you with a few different ways you can do your own sewer line cleaning. By knowing how to clean sewer line clog yourself can be a money saver, especially when these clogs happen on a holiday or weekend! 

Of course, a common question for anything household repair related, “Does homeowners insurance cover the main sewer line?” Technically, the sewer line portion that is on your property, in most policies, is considered “other structure” and will have the same protection as your home. Maybe. 

For instance, if your yard is damaged by an explosion and the sewer line is damaged, then your homeowner’s insurance will cover minus the deductible. If damage is caused by something that was not of your control, it will usually pay. This is something that should be spelled out within your policy. If you aren’t sure you understand the terms, talk to your agent. And if you need sewer line cleaning in Marietta, GA, reach out to BDS Plumbing Solutions Inc by calling at (770) 672-0095.

What is backflow testing?

Water leaking from under a door.

Understanding the Basics

Just what is backflow and what is backflow testing? Any water distribution system is designed so that the water flows away from the distribution point to the customers. However, water lines burst and other issues can happen in these water systems to affect hydraulic operations. Things like this can be an emergency, so if you suspect backflow issues in your home or business contact BDS Plumbing Solutions Inc at (770) 672-0095 to fix your issue.

What causes backflow?

When this happens, there is the possibility for some of that backflow water to flow to the customers in an unprotected state of being, hence the colloquial term “backflow”.  The technical term is back siphonage, referring to cross-connections of water lines.  So, why is back siphonage or backflow testing necessary?

Backflow testing is necessary because of the danger of possibly contaminated, non-drinkable water getting into the water system. When backflow happens, the contaminants the water system removes can make it into the water that goes back to customers.  The water distribution system is designed to remove dangers like chemicals, fertilizers, and other materials from water that can cause illness or even death among those who use it. 

States, counties, and cities all have minimum requirements for backflow testing as well as the repair of any water lines that could be seeping contaminated water into the public drinking water system.  There are certain procedures in place with certain backflow testing tools required, and tools must be tested on a routine schedule. These backflow testing methods help the officials in charge keep water safe.

What causes backflow in plumbing?

To understand what happens with backflow in your home’s plumbing, you need to have a basic knowledge of home plumbing. Gravity and ventilation are key for most sewage removal systems in the home. The two work together to carry wastewater out of the home. Freshwater, however, is pressurized as it comes into your home. 

If the balance between those two processes changes – for example, if the wastewater develops pressure or fresh water experiences a drop in pressure – a backflow is created. This happens when waste material forces its way into your freshwater pipes. Yup – if this happens, you’ll be bathing, cleaning, cooking, and drinking wastewater! Otherwise known as back siphonage. 

When the wastewater system’s pressure increases above the freshwater system’s pressure, something is created called backpressure. This happens when there is a break with the sewer line inside the sewer system, or along the sewer line coming into the house. 

Yes, you could end up bathing, cleaning, cooking, or drinking wastewater! YUCK! That is why states, counties, and cities require public water systems to perform backflow testing periodically to keep you and your family healthy and safe!

How long does a backflow test take?

Backflow testing, done with the proper equipment and tools, can take as little as ten minutes and as long as 30 to 45 minutes. While backflow testing is important, the backflow testing process takes less time than setting up the equipment does.

How often should inspections be done for backflow prevention?         

In Augusta, Richmond County, Georgia, all commercial businesses are required to have a Double Check Backflow Device, while residential properties are required to have a
Dual Check Backflow Device. These devices for backflow testing cost between $350 for a residential or small business sized device or up to $30,000 for the devices larger facilities need. 

The backflow testing of valves using these devices should be performed once a year. After the backflow testing is completed, a certified report is given to the owner of the business or property. Any new backflow device should be tested within 5 days of installation and a certified report sent to the Augusta Utilities Department within ten days, where a copy is kept.

What You Should Be Looking For

Fortunately, preventing backflow is easy, and doing this testing with a backflow device reduces the possible risks that can occur with backflow. This device is installed where water enters a business or home and can be done in a matter of minutes by an experienced plumber. 

How do you know if your home or business needs a backflow preventer? The water that comes from your faucet should be clean, clear, and uninterrupted, and it should taste good and have no foul odor. Contaminated water will have one or more of the following: 

  • Discoloration, typically in a brown, pink, or yellow color
  • A foul odor like sulphur or rotten eggs
  • An interrupted, slow, or trickling water flow
  • Rust particles and/or other sediment found in water
  • A bad taste in the water.
  • Drains work slowly while the water level in your drains has simultaneously decreased
Plumber performing an inspection.

In Closing

If you are noticing any of these things in your business or at home, call a plumber immediately and quit using your water until the matter has been inspected and addressed, including a clear backflow testing report once it is completed. This is the process a city will do when they advise all residents of a boil order for water usage. If you need backflow testing, call BDS Plumbing Solutions Inc at (770) 672-0095 today.

What Causes a Drain to Get Clogged?

drain with no issues

Clogged drain issues

One of the most frustrating things is a clogged drain. Whether it’s a kitchen sink, bathroom sink, or worse, the bathtub drain, a clogged drain can stop the entire day. How does a clogged drain happen?  

In the bathroom or the kitchen, a clogged drain or blocked pipes can begin as a minor issue, but if they aren’t addressed and cleared, major problems can happen. A clogged drain not only slows or stops water draining, but it can create a flood and cause corrosion too. This all leads to expensive repairs. 

The following 8 are the most common causes for clogged drain, but they can be prevented when you know what causes a drain to clog. Just in case they still happen, we have also provided a fix for them too: 

  • HAIR: Hair doesn’t just cause clogged drains by itself. It is the culprit for collecting all things that cause clogged drains and blockages. Hair binds with fat, grease, and other sticky substances and before long, you have a clogged rain. Prevention is the best way to handle a hair clogged drain. This can be done by placing drain guards on any drain where hair is a daily thing, typically the bathroom sink, shower, or tub. 
  • SOAP: You probably thinking that soap is for cleaning, so how can it cause a blocked or clogged drain? The traditional soap bar has fat or grease in its content. When you combine fat or grease substance with the minerals our water has, it creates a hard residue, otherwise referred to as soap scum. That scum causes clogged drains and also is guilty of staining the bath fittings. An easy way to stop this is by changing to a soap free bathing product and not only will stop the soap scum clogged drains, but it will pressure clean your pipes, removing any trace of existing soap buildup.
  • DIRT: Yes, the sink, shower and tub are made to wash things in, but when you’ve been out gardening and take a shower, the excess dirt is too much for pipes and clogged drains are the results. Brush off the excess dirt from your hands, arms, and legs, and shake your clothes off before you take them off too. That same excess dirt will cause clogged drains for the washing machine too. 
  • FOOD WASTE: Yes, your garbage disposal is meant to rid food waste, but some foods aren’t garbage disposal friendly, and they aren’t drain friendly either. You can always start a compost pile with your food waste, including coffee grounds and tea leaves. These are two of the worse things you can put down a drain or garbage disposal. Other things to avoid that are known for clogged drains are fats, grease, and oil because they become solid when mixed with water.
  • MINERAL BUILDUP: All tap water has minerals, and if you have hard water, you have a higher content of minerals. Those minerals build up and creates insoluble masses that cause clogged drains. You can install a water soften which will minimize, even eliminate that from happening. If a water softener isn’t possible, have a professional plumber descale and remove sediment build up once a year. 
  • SMALL FOREIGN OBJECTS: Small foreign objects that get into the plumbing line will not just cause clogged drains but wreak a level of havoc you don’t need or want. The only thing that should be flushed down the toilet is human waste, toilet paper, and water. Other objects and substances should go in a compost pile, the recycle bin, or the trash. Usually when small foreign objects get in the plumbing, it takes a professional plumber to remove it and get the plumbing working normal again. 
  • TOILET PAPER BUILDUP: This is often common when you have toddlers and small children. Too much toilet paper can cause clogged drains and stop a toilet up fast. If the water is still getting through the wad of toilet paper, you can usually plunge it on through. But if the toilet has a major clogged drain, you need to call your plumber because it is probably going to take professional snaking to clear your toilet.
  • TREE ROOTS: As underground pipes age, they will get small cracks that being to leak a little water. That water attracts tree roots, and those tree roots will get inside the pipes. Then you have blocked pipes and that leads to clogged drains. Clearing your pipes of those tree roots is a job for a professional plumber. There will be a lot of digging and excavating in many cases, sometimes, they can do the work with a new trenchless method. 

How much does it cost to clean a clogged drain?

 Because several of the examples we listed suggest that you’ll need to call a professional plumber for cleaning a clogged drain, you probably wonder how expensive is that going to be, right?  Well, many plumbing companies charge a flat rate which can be as little as $50 and as much as $150 for the first hour.  If you’re lucky, they’ll get that clogged drain cleared quick! 

On the average, across the country, a clogged drain cleaning can cost as much as $180.00. When it really gets expensive is when there are tree roots in your underground lines. Regardless of whether the plumber has to trench your lawn, or they can go it trenchless, if there is any act of dirt digging, you could be looking at $500 or more. 

What to use to clean blocked drain?

One of the easiest ways is a mixture process of hot water, baking soda and white vinegar. Start by pouring some really hot water into the clogged drain, then add an equal amount of baking soda and white vinegar. The baking soda should go in after the hot water and before the vinegar. Then cover the drain and allow it to sit for no less than 20 minutes and no longer than 30. 

Then pour hot water into the clogged drain again. It will take a minute or two for the hot water to get through the baking soda and the clogged drain. You can use this method on a regular basis, once a month or every 6 weeks to keep your drain clean and clear.

How do you unclog a drain naturally?

The above described process of hot water, baking soda, and vinegar, you can use one of the following methods: 

  • Baking Soda and Salt: Pour half a up of each into the clogged drain and wait 15 minutes. Then pour boiling hot water and within a few minutes (even seconds) you’ll have an all-natural aggressive chemical reacting with the clogged drain. This is great for those tough bathroom sink clogs. 
  • Boiling Water: If a clogged drain isn’t too severe, hot water can clear it pretty quick. Just keep pouring boiling water into the clogged drain every 10 to 15 minutes. If the clogged drain is primarily soap scum, it will melt it away. 
  • Wet and Dry Shop Vac: Yes, that good old shop vacuum out in your garage can be an ideal way to clear a clogged drain. 
  • A Wire Hanger: This clogged drain cleaner is more involved but can usually get what the other methods describe can’t.  Straighten out a wire coat hanger and shove the curved end down the clogged drain, and “go fish”. 

Can too much baking soda clog a drain?

Yes, if you haven’t mixed it with the hot water and vinegar as suggested and never use more than a half a cup at one time! 


Is Drano really bad for pipes?

Well, the makers of Drano will tell you no, it is not bad for pipes. However, experienced plumbers will tell you yes, it can damage pipes. Why do they say that?  Pouring Drano into a clogged drain creates several chemical reactions at one time.

With sodium hydroxide, the main ingredient, aka lye, which decomposes most of the organic matter like grease and hair. There are shards of aluminum in lye, which creates a strong reaction, generating near-boiling hot heat to speed up the decomposing process. As it sits there “boiling” it is continuing to generate more heat, and that heat begins to crack toilets, soften, and break PVC pipes, and if any pipes are corroded and old, Drano will eat away at them, damaging them. Call (770) 672-0095 today for your drain cleaning needs in Marietta, GA.

Who do I call if my sump pump is not working?

sump pump with water

Getting help for your sump pump

While they aren’t common and found in every home, there are many homes that plumbing and pumps go together like peas and carrots. A plumbing pump, more commonly called a sump pump, can make the difference between a basement flooding or not flooding. 

A sump pump is a device that is installed in a pit in a basement or in a crawl space. It is submersible, meaning it is made to work under water. For the post part, it doesn’t do anything, it simply is on standby, but when it is needed, it works hard. When does a plumbing pump start to work? 

A plumbing pump, aka sump pump, will start doing its job when the area it is set in becomes flooded, typically the basement, or the crawlspace. Not every house needs this because the grade of the property doesn’t allow water to soak in the rain. For a house that does have flooding issues, a plumbing pump is a bonus to have. 

Houses that aren’t on a well-graded property, the soil can only absorb so much rain, then it flows into the basement or into the crawl space. As water begins to fill the plumbing pit, the plumbing pump becomes activated and pumps out the excess water. That water goes to a plumbing drain, pumps the water off to either a dry well, detention pond, or storm drain. 

Do sump pumps need maintenance?

Yes, at the minimum once a year inspection and maintenance is recommended. However, if your plumbing pump is used more frequently, you may need to inspect and perform maintenance more often. If you’re going to do the maintenance yourself, be sure to unplug the power supply first, then follow these steps: 

  • Monthly Cleaning: If your washing machine drains into the pit for the plumbing pump to dispose of the gray water, a monthly cleaning of the inlet or screen is recommended. To clean these, remove the plumbing pump from the pit. On the bottom of the pump you’ll find a grate that needs to be cleaned. A plumbing pump will sometimes suck in dirt and small rocks, blocking the inlet. If this isn’t cleaned regularly, you’ll find yourself looking for plumbing repair pumps or buying a new plumbing pump.
  • Quarterly Cleaning: A plumbing pump that is only used for pumping out the basement or crawl space should be cleaned every four months and inspect it every 2 months. Making sure it is plugged in to a GFCI outlet and the cord is in good condition is important. If not, your plumbing pump may not be there to work for you when you need it. 
  • Annual Cleaning: The plumbing pump and the pit should be cleaned annually. Make sure the power is off and remove the plumbing pump from the pit. Clean the drainage pipes, the grade, and the inlet or screen. Then return the plumbing pump to the pit, fill the pit with water and test the pump. Never test a pump without water in the pit.
  • Annual Battery Backup Check: A plumbing pump need electricity to operate, but when the power is out, which is common during storm season, you want to make sure you have a backup battery ready to go. 

Once a year, it pays to have a professional contractor check you plumbing pump. This is an investment in your investment that protects your biggest and most important investment – your home. A professional contractor will do the following: 

  • Inspect the pit.
  • Inspect the Check Valve.
  • Inspect the backup power source. 
  • Check the alarm if the plumbing pump is equipped with one.
  • Inspect the removable cover.
  • Inspect the discharge location. 

How do you know if a pressure tank is bad?

Pumps for plumbing are all basically the same thing, different shapes, and sizes. Not all plumbing pumps have a pressure tank, but if yours does, it is important to know the signs that it is going out. You can do something about it before it happens, or your plumbing pump is rendered useless when you need it most. Indictors to be aware of are clicking and loud noises coming from the pressure tank and electric bill increases. 

sump pump in basement

How much does it cost to replace a ejector pump?

All plumbing pumps water is valuable. With out pumps, we wouldn’t get water into our home and back out again. You don’t realize how valuable until it isn’t working, or the ejector pump quits in your sump pump.  To replace your plumbing pump ejector they can range from $150 to $300 for a bottom of the line model to a more expensive model costing up to $600.

If you’re considering purchasing a plumbing pump, you want to make sure you get the right size for your needs.  So, how are plumbing pumps rated? Plumbing pumps are rated by the following factors: 

  • Horsepower
  • Volumetric flow rate
  • Outlet pressure of head
  • Inlet suction of head

Note:  The head can be streamlined by the measurement of feet it raises or lowers the water at the atmospheric pressure. Call (770) 672-0095 today for your sump pump needs in Marietta, GA.

Should you do a sewer scope inspection?

sewer inlet in yard

What happens during a sewer inspection?

What is a sewer scope and when would you need one? Well, along with taking for granted that water always being available when you turn a faucet on, you probably take for granted that it is going to drain and flow on into the sewer lines too. When it doesn’t flow on into the sewer line though, and the drains and toilet back up, what then? 

Well, most of us, after a few panic efforts of plunging, call a plumber. When they can’t see anything obvious, they proceed with a sewer scope inspection. Now, you an idea what a sewer scope it, right? A sewer scope allows a plumber to inspect a sewer line with a video camera. By doing a sewer scope, they are able to see any blockages, breaks, cracks, or other damages that could be causing the drains to now flow into the sewer lines. 

For years, when a plumber received a call for stopped up drains and sewer lines, if they didn’t see anything obvious in the drains, it was assumed it was in the lateral sewer lines.  They could only guess at what and where the problem was located. Then they  would proceed to dig up the lawn at what they hoped was the right area. 

Today, the plumbing industry has developed technology that allows them to see into the sewer line with a sewer scope.  This is a type of camera equipment that allows them to look for through the plumbing pipes easier and quicker, getting a detailed diagnosis as it displays a video on a small screen. Yes, plumbers can now see into the dark abyss of a sewer line! They perform a sewer scope and cleaning simultaneously, which saves money and time for them, and saves the homeowner money too. 

How does a sewer scope work?

Sewer scope equipment allows plumbers to do a video inspection of a home or business’ lateral sewer lines located on the private property running between the home or structure foundation to the city lines or septic tank. 

A sewer scope will reveal blockages, breaks, cracks, or other damages to the plumber.  From that, the plumber can determine what needs to be done, which can be using an auger to unclog the pipe system or replace part of the pipeline. 

What do septic inspectors look for?

Using a sewer scope or sewer camera, a plumber is able to identify a variety of issues and problems with drain and sewer lines. Four of the most common issues and problems that plumbers find using a sewer scope are: 

  1. Broken, Collapsed, and Cracked Pipes: The process of feeding the sewer scope into the sewer line allows the plumber to identify the area and the problem with a video footage displayed on a small screen. From this information, the plumber will know how to approach and make repairs.  
  2. Infiltrated Tree Roots: Homes with older sewer lines are usually clay, cast iron or some other type of pipe that is porous. Because tree roots are seeking water constantly, the smallest leak or seepage from sewer lines attracts them. As they find that small bit of water, they infiltrate that pipe for more water, and expand. This breaks and cracks those old sewer lines. 
  3. Sewer Lines Sagging: Sewer lines sagging will allow wastewater to accumulate in the belly section of the sewer lines, leading to blocked sewer lines.
  4. Major Blockage: Major blockage happens when things are flushed down the toilet or poured down the drain that shouldn’t be, thus creating a persistent blockage. From children’s toys to cooking grease, feminine hygiene products or a variety of other items will get caught in the sewer line, creating a large clog that can’t be removed without professional plumber help. 

How long does a sewer scope take?

There are several variables that can impact a sewer scope inspection. For the plumber to go from one manhole to another, it takes between twenty to thirty minutes. Some properties have  several manholes, and other variables that can affect the time are the length and size of the pipes as well as their configuration. The condition of the pipes can affect the time as the plumber as to stop the sewer scope to examine possible defects. 

The type of inspection will affect the time the sewer video process will take too. There are specific reports required by plumber to submit based on the type of inspection. Once they have completed the repair needed, they will perform another sewer video inspection to confirm there aren’t additional issues to address. 

sewer pipes under home

How do I know if my sewer line needs to be replaced?

Your home’s sewer system is an essential system that is necessary every day,  a vital component in how your plumbing system works. So when you experience drainage problems that can’t  be resolved with the basic household plunger or using baking soda with vinegar to clear drain, the expertise of a professional plumber is needed.  

You may wonder if you’re having these problems and call a plumber, is sewer scope necessary, and the answer is probably yes.  When sewer lines have been neglected, or a problem isn’t apparent and obvious, then a plumber will need to use a sewer scope system. Here are some indications that your home may need sewer line repair or replacement performed:

  • Sewage Backups and Blockages – When there is constant  clogs or water backflow when draining a sink, tub or flushing the toilet, a sewer scope inspection will help the plumber find the exact problem.
  • Constant Lingering Odor – Sewer lines are supposed to be airtight with the exception of a vent stack, usually located on the roof.  When you are noticing sewer odors around the exterior of your property, you may have a clogged or cracked sewer line. 
  • Drains Are Slow – Slow draining isn’t a clog yet, but a blockage is forming and that will lead to a clog with sewer backup. As soon as you notice the slow draining, take the steps to clear the clog yourself, but after a few tries, if that isn’t helping, call a plumber.  With a sewer scope, they will be able to locate the problem quickly and make any repairs or replacement needed. 
  • Soggy Area in  Lawn – If you are noticing there are damp, soggy areas of grass, you probably have a leaking or busted sewer line. Same is true if you’re noticing extreme lush grass patches.

With any of these issues, calling a plumber sooner than later is recommended.  The longer you postpone that service call, the worse the problem is going to get and the more it will cost you in the end. Need sewer camera inspection in Marietta, GA? Call (770) 672-0095 today.

How do you fix low water pressure?

low water pressure shower

What is normal house water pressure?

Is there anything worse than trying to a long, hot shower and have extraordinarily little water pressure? Maybe no hot water, but that’s another topic for another day. As much as we depend on the water and the water heater, water pressure is important to our daily lives too.

Air and water pressure are both measured in pounds per square inch, or PSI.  In regard to water pressure, this is the force that water comes from the water main and into your home. The normal PSI for a home plumbing system is between thirty and eighty psi.

When people mention water volume, is that the same thing? No, the difference between water pressure vs volume is force vs amount.  Water pressure is the force in which water pushes through the plumbing. Water volume is the amount of water that is flowing through your water faucets and water taps.

Can you have  too much water pressure? Immediately, no, high water for a short time likely will not cause a pipe burst or leak. However, it will add can stress to the water pipes and any weak areas will have an increased chance of pipe failures and leaks.

Why is my water pressure so low all of a sudden?

When the  water pressure is low in house, it is typically easy to troubleshoot to find the problem, and sometime, it is an easy fix. Four things to check and try before calling the city or a plumber are:  

1. Determine the problem:

Before water pressure problems can be resolved, you have to what’s going on first. Some things to check so that you can go forward are:

Water fixture: If the problem of low water pressure is one fixture, that could be an aerator or cartridge clogged. Simply remove those with pliers, soak a few minutes in water and white vinegar to remove the limescale, and replace them. A showerhead may need to soak overnight.

The entire house: If the water pressure is affecting every fixture, you need to look at the main shut-off valve. If it is partially closed, turn it toward open just a fraction and check the water pressure again. If it isn’t a problem with the water main, you need to call a plumber.

The entire neighborhood: Sometimes, a low water pressure problem can affect the entire neighborhood. Check with your neighbors if they are having any issues with water pressure.  If other are experiencing this same problem, check with the city or local water supply and see if they are working on the water system.

2. Check your water heater

When the cold water pressure is good, but the water pressure for the hot water is low, check the water heater. Start with checking the shut-off valve to the water heater. It may be closed slightly which will affect the water pressure. Open it back up and check the hot water pressure again.  If it is open or the water pressure is still poor, this could indicate the water heater has a build-up of sediment and needs to be flushed. Or your water heater may need replacing.

3. Check water pressure regulator

Also referred to as the PRV, this is what brings the water pressure to an optimum level prior to reaching the plumbing fixtures. Your home may not have one, but if you do, the PRV is common when experiencing low water pressure if it is broken. It can be replaced by a professional plumber.  

4. Tracking down leaking pipes

Even if there is plenty of water coming from the main to your home, if there is a leak anywhere in between or within the plumbing system of your home, you’re going to lose water pressure. The first step in finding out if you have water is a leak is checking the meter.  With all the water off in and outside the house, if the meter is moving, you have a leak. Now, the hunt and find begin.

How do I test my home water pressure?

Like the indoor air quality in your home, you should test the water pressure in your home two to three times a year. This will help you find and identify in possible issues and remedy them before they become bigger problems. This guide will walk you through the steps to test your home’s water pressure with just an inexpensive, simple pressure gauge that is available at any home improvement store. You want one with female hose threads,  a rubber gasket, and a capacity to measure up to 300 psi.

  1. Make sure all water outlets are turned off inside and outside your home. This includes the dishwasher, ice maker, faucets, showerheads, washing machine, and sprinklers.  If any water is on, the water pressure check will be incorrect.
  2. Connect the gauge to any outside faucet or the hose bib, closest to your water meter.
  3. By hand, tighten the gauge and open the faucet. If the gauge reads between forty-five and fifty-five psi, you have ideal water pressure.  

Can you increase water pressure in your house?

If the faucets and showerhead only dribble water out and it takes forever for the washing machine to fill, your home probably has a low water pressure issue, a relatively common plumbing issue. There could be one of many reasons that is causing this, but fortunately, there are ways that and fix this with a little money and time.

  • First, you’ll want to do a water pressure check as we’ve discussed above. When that proves to be adequate, checking the flow rate, another  important factor for the water pressure to your home.
  • The water flow rate measure the amount of water delivered through our homes pipes over a certain time. This is calculated as GPM (gallons per minute). When there is a higher demand for water that what the system is able to supply, it will seem to be a low water pressure issue.
  • To check your home’s water flow, turn all water-using appliances and faucets are turned off.  With a garden hose connected to a faucet  outdoors, line three 5-gallon buckets up and begin filling the buckets with water using the hose, with the faucet turned up full blast.
  • After sixty seconds, stop and measure the amount of water the buckets captured. If there are two-and-half buckets, then calculates to 12-1/2 GPM. Each person in an average household will use between 100 to 120 gallons of water daily. The ideal water flow rate is between six to twelve GPM.
water pressure sink

How do I adjust my water pressure?

There three ways you can increase the water pressure in your home:

  • Call the Water Department: When you’re on a city water system, they will check your home’s water pressure as it comes from the street to your home. If there isn’t a problem found on the city’s die at the main water pipe, then take the next step.
  • Pressure-Reducing Valve: Adjusting the pressure-reducing valve is a easy and fast way to improve your water pressure. Beside the water meter, there is a conical-shaped valve and a threaded bolt protruding from that valve. To increase the water pressure, loosen the locking nut around the bolt, then turn it clockwise. Using the pressure gauge, determine when the proper water pressure is reached, 50 PSI, and tighten the locknut.
  • Pressure Booster: If these methods for increasing your water pressure fail, you’ll need to have a booster pump installed by a profession plumbing contractor.

If you’re looking for a way to increase water pressure without pump, check your water pressure first and if you have a reading of 30 to 80 psi, then there is adequate water pressure in your home. With that determined, any of the following can affect your home’s water pressure.

  • Clogged Pipes
  • Malfunction Valves
  • Leakage
  • Water Pressure Regulator Issues
  • Faulty Fixtures
  • High Water Demand
  • Water Rationing

Can you increase the water pressure with well water supply? Yes, you can achieve an ideal water pressure for a well between 40 to 60 psi. The following are things you can check to increase your home’s water pressure:

  • Air fill valve
  • Pipe inspection
  • Inspect the water from the well
  • Have pressure tank and pump inspected

Need help with your home water pressure in Marietta, GA? BDS Plumbing Solutions Inc can help! Call (770) 672-0095 today!

How to Prepare Your Home for Colder Weather

water damage from plumbing

How do you maintain plumbing?

If you haven’t already, you need to get your winter plumbing maintenance done now! In many parts of this country, the first snow has fallen, and it is only a matter to time before those cold, frigid temperatures make it to Georgia.

When it comes to home ownership, Cold weather plumbing maintenance is essential and important. In this piece today, we’re going to answer questions and talk about home plumbing maintenance, by the homeowner and when you need professional plumbing maintenance services.

Your home’s plumbing system will benefit from the following preventative Home plumbing maintenance checklist we have created. Because basic home plumbing maintaining, a little bit of effort can go a long way in preventing costly plumbing repairs:

  • Clean the toilet regularly – this is more than the sanitary cleaning you already do. We mean a thorough cleaning around the jets to prevent buildup using a toilet brush. This will keep your toilet flushing at full power. Flush only body waste business and toilet paper down the toilet.
  • A good plunger – investing in a good plunger and knowing how and when to use it is important. When there has been a flush-gone-wrong and water begins backing up, a good plunger and know-how can be what keeps you from having a major catastrophe. A funnel-cup plunger is the better type for toilets and let it sit under hot running water before you attempt using it to soften the rubber.  
  • No chemical drain cleaner product – while these tout themselves as being the best at clearing clogs, they also damage pipes, and they don’t do a good a job a clearing clogs either. When you have a drain problem, and the plunger or plumber’s snake doesn’t clear the clog, call a professional plumber.
  • Garbage disposal and cold water – it is tempting to keep the hot water running as you use the garbage disposal,  but cold water is better on this appliance. The blades stay sharper longer when you use cold water, getting the most efficiency from your unit. Like the toilet, be careful what is put into the drain for the garbage disposal. Sharp, stringy, tough, not food times are not meant for garbage disposals.
  • Winter Preparation – part of your homeowner plumbing maintenance duties is making sure the pipes are wrapped with insulation.  When the temperature is below freezing for several days, keep the faucets trickling so they don’t freeze up.
  • The washing machine water supply hose – a washing machine hose that is less than 1” side will dispense approximately 650 gallons of water per hour. This takes a toll on the hose and it will wear out. , it can only last so long. Part of your home Plumbing maintenance and repairs is keeping an eye on the washing machine water supply hose. When you see a bubble forming, it is time to replace the hose before it burst. It is the simple things like this that by knowing how to do plumbing maintenance around the house that will save you a lot of money and aggravation.        

What are the most common plumbing problems?

When plumbing maintenance isn’t performed, plumbing issues are the results with the problem reaching a breaking point. Instead of making an emergency phone call to a plumber, the following tips may help you do your own repair:

  • Faucet Issues: Dripping water is more than an annoyance; it is an indication that you are wasting as much as 2,600 gallons of water in 12 months, not to mention what it is doing to your water bill. Try these repair steps and see if that fixes it before you call a plumber: The O-ring – inexpensive and fast fix, replacing the rubber O-ring on the faucet. The Cartridge – also known as the aerator, this is the mesh-like filter in the spigot end. It will clog from the mineral deposits in the water and cut back the water pressure. Part of your home plumbing maintenance program should be changing or cleaning this mesh-like filter on a monthly basis. Valve Seat or Washer – the valve seat and wash are located between the faucet and the spout and are what holds it all together. When this connection wears out or loosens, the spout will leak. Replace this washer and add to your monthly plumbing maintenance, cleaning this area of the faucet.
  • Pipes Leaking: Plumbing is mostly pipes, and in older homes, copper pipes are common. While copper pipes are the stronger pipe used, it doesn’t do well when the temperatures go from cold to hot and back to cold. Copper pipes are also known to corrode and require a lot of plumbing maintenance. If possible, replumbing your house in PEX is recommended. In the meantime, insulate your plumbing before winter.
  • Toilet Issues: A leaking toilet isn’t always noticed until it is too late. If you notice your toilet is running after a flush, replace the rubber flapper inside the tank. At the same time, replace the chain that holds the flapper. For under $20, this is a simple plumbing maintenance trick that doesn’t require an expensive plumber service call.
  • Hose Bib Worn Out: The average hose bibb should be replaced once a year. They crack and lose their integrity during cold weather. When the simple plumbing maintenance doesn’t include replacing the bib, it can crack and end up wasting 100s of gallons of water in a month.
  • Clogs: A clogged drain is a major source of frustration for any homeowner. Clogged toilets we already addressed but a clogged bathroom or kitchen sinks and drain is a different matter. Do not use those over-the-counter chemical drain cleaners! Remember, they damage pipes. Instead, use some home remedies first and if all this fails, you’ll need to call a plumber.

How often should you clean your plumbing pipes?

A monthly routine for plumbing maintenance should include cleaning the pipes and drains is sufficient to maintain healthy plumbing. This can save you costly plumbing bills and a lot of aggravation.

How do I know if my plumbing is leaking?

Some common signs that you may have a plumbing leak could be obvious. Check around appliances, faucets, showers, sinks, toilets, and valves. Other signs of a plumbing leak are:

  • Water Bill Increase: The water bill increase in the summer is normal, but during the winter, it could indicate you have a leak.  
  • Meter Keeps Running: When the water meter continuously keeps running after you have turned everything off, you definitely have a water leak.
  • Mildew and Mold: If you are constantly finding mildew or mold in the bathroom or kitchen, even after cleaning it daily, you may have a water leak in the walls or under the flooring.  
  • A Musty Smell: Standing water and moist surfaces will have a musty smell. After cleaning the bathroom or kitchen, if you’re still smelling musty odor, there is a hidden plumbing leak somewhere.
burst pipe

How do you stop plumbing problems?

Basic knowledge and steps with plumbing maintenance and smarts will minimize, even stop plumbing problems. Suggestions are:

  1. Clean your drains and pipes once a month.
  2. If a problem keeps returning, fix it permanently.
  3. Keep large debris from entering the drains and pipes.
  4. Clean and flush the drains and garbage disposal regularly.
  5. Do not pour grease down the kitchen drain.
  6. Do not put non-human waste in the toilet.

Need help with your home plumbing in Marietta, GA? Call (770) 672-0095 today.