How to Handle an Emergency Plumbing Situation
Whether it is a running toilet or a burst pipe, how you react in an emergency is important to fixing the problem. Here are useful steps to take the next time you face a plumbing emergency:
- Plan: Know your plumbing system before disaster strikes. Locate the main water value as well as all isolation values on the individual lines. Purchase plumber’s tape and keep it alongside a plunger and some wrenches.
- React: As soon as you realize there is a problem, shut off the main water valve or the isolation valve to stop the water flow. If you turn off the main water value, remember to also turn off the water heater or set it on pilot to prevent hot water from building up inside.
- Call: Contact an emergency plumber if you cannot fix the problem yourself.
- Reduce the mess: Remove any water or debris to reduce the amount of damage on your floors.
If you are experiencing an emergency plumbing situation, search our list to find an accredited plumber near you.
Why is My Toilet Running? Can I Replace It Myself?
Listening to a toilet run can be irritating. But can you fix the problem yourself or should you hire a toilet plumber? Here are some typical problems that can affect a toilet:
- Problem #1: Random Flushing
Possible Solution: Drain the tank and check the seal on the flapper. It may need to be cleaned to create a better seal. If that does not stop the problem, the flapper may be deteriorated and will need to be replaced.
- Problem #2: Trickling Water
Possible Solution: Remove the lid and make sure the floater is not stuck or detached. If that is not the source of the problem, check the refill tube. It should only hang a few centimeters over the edge of the overflow pipe.
Possible Solution: The main cause of a weak flush is clogged holes along the rim of the bowl. Clean away the debris to remove the blockage.
If the problem does not go away, you may need to consider replacing the toilet or hiring a plumber.
Warning Signs You Have a Leak
A leak in your plumbing system can often lead to serious consequences. In addition to the financial cost, a leak can potentially ruin your foundation, yard, or flooring. Here are common warning signs of a leak:
- High water bill: Unless you have increased your amount of water usage, a higher than normal monthly bill could be a sign water is leaking out of your pipes.
- Decrease in water pressure: It is normal for water pressure to decrease in moments when you have several appliances running at the same time. If the water pressure is weak when there is nothing else in use, there couple potentially be a leak.
- Odd Noises: If you hear gurgling noises while running an appliance, or hear water running in the walls when no appliances are being used, consider hiring a plumber to evaluate the system for a leak.
- Rotten Egg or Sulphur Smell: Bad odors hovering around running water can often be caused by a leak. Natural gases and certain bacteria can potentially seep into your water supply and create the smell. If the smell is only around hot water, the problem might be with your water heater. However, if you notice the smell around both hot and cold water you potentially have a more serious problem with your water supply system.
- Changes in the Floor: Cracks in the tile, swelling, or warm spots can be sometimes be caused by a leak underneath the floor.
If you recognize any of these signs, it is possible there is a leak somewhere within your plumbing system. Search our list to find an accredited emergency plumber near you.
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