The Top Five Most Common Household Plumbing Problems

Posted by on January 26/2015 | 0 Comments

Common Household Plumbing Problems

It’s no good having a local, licensed plumber on speed dial if they can’t attend to the most common household plumbing problems that afflict homeowners across southwestern Ontario. Some jobs are naturally bigger, more expensive, demanding, and invasive than others, but there are other sets of tasks that shouldn’t take a qualified Ontario plumber much time or effort to complete.

While there are a host of small repairs you can make yourself for common plumbing issues, sometimes the problem goes just beyond the realm of common expertise or knowledge or requires proper tools and capabilities that not everyone possesses. Remember that there’s no household plumbing problem—large or small—that can’t be tackled by our trained, insured, certified, and friendly plumbing professionals. Don’t hesitate to call us if you need help with some small (but certainly aggravating) plumbing repairs!

Top 6 Household Plumbing Problems

The following are possibly the six most common household plumbing problems, and believe us when we say that these are not only our bread and butter but also things we actually enjoy fixing up! It gives us great pride to help you with whatever problem you might be having, with upfront pricing and courteous service as our guarantee to you.

Clogged or Plugged Household Drains

There are numerous reasons why your drains have a blockage, and without the proper know-how and tools, it’s incredibly difficult to peep inside your plumbing to determine the root cause. There are two key areas where a drain clog may be in your plumbing system: drain pipes that provide your water supply and drain pipes that discard wastewater to the main lateral line underneath your property. But household plumbing problems can easily creep up on you. Some common signs of a clogged drain include slow drains, and strange noises like gurgling or bubbling sounds, foul odours of discarded sewage or rotting food, and sewage backups. So if you flush your toilet and hear bubbling noises coming from your shower or bathroom sink, it’s most likely the fact you have a clog in your lateral line.

Ideally, the only things that should ever be tossed or flushed down your drain are human waste and toilet paper. Certain items that should never be flushed down your drain include flushable wipes, food scraps like eggshells and coffee grounds, fats, oils and grease, paper towels, hair feminine hygiene products, and so much more! And we don’t recommend chemical-based household drain cleaners or do-it-yourself hacks like combining baking soda and vinegar, which only add more debris to the clog. Don’t add more stress to your existing household plumbing problem; instead, reach out to our experienced, professional plumber to diagnose the situation by inspecting your household plumbing in greater detail.

Dripping Faucet

Leaky faucets are a nuisance of a household plumbing problem and, unfortunately, can make your utility bill skyrocket if not fixed. It’s recommended you get these repairs corrected as they take little time and can not only reduce your projected water consumption of gallons per day on your bills but also protect you from potential water damage, help you to become more conscious of your eco-footprint, and best of all get rid of that pesky noise pollution of constant drip-dropping.

There are many reasons for a leaking tap, but the best part is that most parts of a faucet are easily tweaked by a replacement part that can be purchased from any home hardware store. Some of these include a worn-out O-ring which prevents water from spluttering out of the tap. Also, a washer is a small disk that eases friction and spreads out the load of the liquid, seals in tightness, and prevents leakage when the tap is turned off. If the washer is worn out, it causes a plumbing leak. And lastly, a valve seat is responsible for the opening and closing of the washer and adjusts the pressure for water flow which, if deteriorating, is usually due to mineral deposit buildup over time, causing hard water and inconsistent temperatures.

Nobody likes the telltale drip-drip-drip of a dripping tap. The average person might not be able to replace old worn-out parts, and you don’t want to keep wasting water (and money) with this household plumbing problem. When you can’t stand it anymore, we can figure out if you need a new jumper valve, body washer, O-ring, or a whole new tap. Our expert plumber team can also install new bathroom faucets or shower heads in your shower or bathtub.

Leaking Toilet

A toilet leak is commonplace for any homeowner and something you should not delay in fixing. If a household plumbing problem is left unattended, the most apparent sign is surrounding puddles which can result in further damage to extremities, including your bathroom floor lining and spread nasty bacteria from wastewater. Typically, there are a few signs that indicate a leaking toilet.

For starters, you can tell there’s a plumbing problem because not only is there a constant sound of running water, but there may be abnormal water cycling, whistling sounds whenever you flush the water level in the tank or bowl water is always rising. Next, leaking from the base of the toilet is indicative of a malfunction in the base itself, which is normally prevented by the floor flanges and wax gaskets if they are working properly. Or it could also be a crack in the toilet bowl or damage to the supply line. Moreover, leaking from a crack on the tank’s exterior is cause for concern, especially if water is spurting out from it, as it may be on the brink of total collapse leading to catastrophic damage. And finally, damaged supply lines mean that your toilet’s water supply line is faulty, or at the very least the smaller pieces like fittings and valves attached to the line are.

Pipe Leaks

There are various reasons for a leaky pipe. It’s a plumbing issue that ranges from clogged drains, excessive water pressure, loose connections, freezing, to incorrect installation. Any hidden water leak inside your fixtures increases your risk of disastrous water damage and expensive home repairs, and it will also increase your utility bill due to just a tiny hole in a pipe. This can cause you to lose thousands of gallons of water per day. Loose pipe joints could also be the culprits. Alongside this, some red flags for leaks include unpleasant odours, strange noises, weakened water pressure, ceiling and wall damage evident by damp spots, and pop-up puddles constantly appearing.

Typically, there are two solutions to fixing this particular household plumbing problem: either relining the interior pipe walls or replacing the affected section. For the former, this is a non-invasive approach that inserts a liner inside the existing lines. But it doesn’t always work the best for smaller, residential lines. And for the latter, as a failsafe, our leak detection repair technicians can always replace the impacted area to fix the problem, with an entire line or system replacement not being needed. It’s best to be proactive, practice preventative maintenance, and get a regular inspection from your professional plumber. This is alongside doing good practices like not flushing any items that would damage your lines and being mindful of bordering trees in case their roots intrude and penetrate underground lines.

Garbage Disposal Problems

Better known as a garburator, this is a device that grinds up food waste and rinses it down your drain. Unfortunately, many people treat this like a composter, and unbeknownst to them, most kitchen drains can’t handle food scraps and will eventually result in household plumbing problems such as a jammed garbage disposal and clogged sink. Some signs that your garburator is busted include humming sounds, leaks, repetitive clogs, and persistent foul odours. It’s advised you give your garburator a thorough routine cleaning once in a while and perform maintenance such as turning off the power switch and the switch on the circuit breaker panel. Next, clean the splash guard, a plastic ring on the top of your sink, by removing built-up residue. Other tips include manually removing food particles from the drain opening, trying DIY natural household remedies, and flushing the drain to remove loose debris.

Not Enough Hot Water

One common household plumbing problem is an unwanted cold shower. Everyone hates getting doused with cold water when they’re only halfway through a shower, which is why this has got to be one of the most irritating household plumbing problems. If you have a large family that likes to take a lot of showers, you likely need a bigger hot water tank or a hybrid solution that combines a tank-style hot water heater with a tankless heater for maximum efficiency and plenty of hot water supply. But if you’re the only one who is taking a shower at that time of day and you still don’t have enough supply to get you through, that’s a sign you’re having water heater issues and need repair or replacement for your unit.

Why Do Drains Clog in My Household Plumbing?

Problems with clogged or plugged drains are an unwelcome surprise! A drain can be obstructed by foreign objects, soap or hair, or scum, or can have a more complex blockage—a misaligned water pipe or even an infiltrating tree root, which will cause even more issues down the road. If you’ve got a blockage that just won’t unclog, reach out to us!

One of the most common causes of household plumbing problems, such as clogged drains, is rinsing or flushing stuff down the drain that really doesn’t belong in your wastewater disposal system. In the kitchen sink, the biggest problems are fat, oil and grease. While you can easily pour them down your drain and rinse them out of the sink with a blast of hot water, they don’t make it very far down your wastewater disposal line before they coat the interior of the line and solidify, making a sticky trap for any solids that follow them down the pipe.

In the bathroom sink, bathtub and shower drain, your plumbing problem is likely to be clumps of hair tangled up with soap scum, dirt and other substances that get washed down the drain. Mineral deposits are also a big problem because most parts of Ontario have hard water—in fact, Ontario is the province with the highest concentrations of dissolved minerals in its supply. While that doesn’t affect potability, it can wreak havoc on your pipes by clogging them with mineral buildup.

What Are the Signs I Have a Household Plumbing Problem?

Household plumbing problems tend to start out small and get worse over time, which can make them less noticeable as homeowners just slowly adjust and learn to live with the symptoms of trouble. If you’re aware of what qualifies as a warning sign for a household plumbing problem, you can call your local Hy-Pro plumber for help before it gets out of control.

Strange Noises

Hear a constant low hum coming from the bathroom? Your toilet is running…away with your savings due to your inflated energy bill. The same thing goes if there’s an ever-present puddle of water around the base. If you can’t fix the chain, stopper, or other items in the tank, then we’ll get your toilet working properly in no time. This might mean you’ve got a problem with your gaskets, water supply line, or more, so if it seems too hard to fix yourself, let us handle it!

Surface Changes

If you spot wet stains, mould, or deterioration to walls, wooden frames, or floors in your household, you’ve probably got a leaking pipe behind a wall. This is definitely a job best left to the experts to fix, but it is still extremely common. The best thing to do is act quickly and get us involved to look at your household plumbing before you experience a burst pipe—and an even worse complication that you definitely don’t want!

Malfunctioning Household Fixtures and Systems

Is your household disposal unit giving you grief? Is it not breaking down waste, or is it causing a mess or emitting a foul smell? This piece of household plumbing can be dangerous to fix, so get us on the line, and we’ll ensure things run smoothly in no time at all.

Besides your regular fixtures, there are other important plumbing systems, such as your sump pump or backwater valve. If you live in a flood-prone area, having these systems running optimally is important because sump pump failures during heavy rains could lead to overwhelmed perimeter drains. Also, if your backwater valve on your sewer line isn’t functioning properly, it won’t redirect stormwater away from your home. These major issues may not seem like the typical types of household plumbing problems, but they can be!

Unpleasant Odours

Are there bad smells wafting up from your drains that smell musty or like rotting food? Or, do you catch a whiff of sewer odours in your basement or backyard? Those are indications that you have a household plumbing problem that could be anything from a clogged drain to an impending sewer backup. Don’t wait until disaster strikes as it could result in costly property damage and become a serious health hazard.

Frequent Clogs

Clogs happen now and then, and they usually aren’t that big of a deal. But if you have a fixture that just won’t stop clogging with normal use or multiple fixtures clog up at the same time, those are indications that you’re dealing with a household plumbing problem that is worse than just a run-of-the-mill blockage. We recommend calling a certified plumber before it turns into a costly plumbing emergency.

Need Help With Your Household Plumbing Problem? Reach Out To Your Local Team At Hy-Pro!

Remember that whatever your household plumbing problem might be—whether it’s affecting your main water valve, septic tank, sewer lines, or water heater—we’ll work fast to make it go away. Don’t feel bashful, even if it seems minor or straightforward; small household plumbing problems can easily compound and become a major plumbing disaster. Let us sort things out and recover your flow of water before any issues grow into a big mess.

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