Emergency Plumbing Tips

It’s Friday night, the sink is overflowing and the garbage disposal blew up.  That is one of the many reasons that plumbers get called out to provide emergency services after hours.  Having overflowing sinks, toilets or floods in your home constitute an emergency and getting an emergency plumber in to fix the issue is imperative. Here are some emergency plumbing tips that will get you through any crisis and get your home back to normal quickly.

Emergency Plumbing Tips

Emergencies Never Happen During Business Hours

Plumbing companies, like any other business tend to operate Monday through Friday and keep daytime business hours.  Does an emergency happen at 2 in the afternoon?  Very rarely.  Most often you find yourself with a plumbing emergency when you get home from work, long after business hours are over.  That doesn’t mean that your emergency can wait until the next business day, in fact most of the time it’s crucial to get it fixed right away.  If you wait all weekend with a house full of water or sewage you could end up with permanent or structural damage.  You need a plumber now!

What Does an Emergency Plumber Fix?

While an emergency plumber can fix any issue that you have, you only want to call them when you need help urgently, not for regular maintenance or an issue that can wait until next week.  They usually come out to your home for issues such as broken pipes, water stoppages, clogs, or water supply lines.  You want them to come for something that if it isn’t dealt with right now could cause permanent damage to your home.  Regular maintenance can wait until business hours.  Here are the times on when to call an emergency plumber.

Fast and Convenient Service

Emergency plumbing services are fast and convenient, they get to your home promptly and get the repairs done as fast as possible. Don’t risk permanent damage to your home but waiting, you could end up spending ten times as much down the road.  Here is an example, a leaking toilet can damage the floorboards underneath and now you need your entire bathroom replaced rather than just the toilet.  Fixing the problem immediately will cost you far less in the long run.

Regular Maintenance is a Must

Emergency plumbers can charge a premium for their services and if you want to avoid paying that premium then regular maintenance is key.  Most people ignore their plumbing until a pipe bursts at 2 in the morning and they need to pay an emergency plumber to come out and fix it.  The best way to handle an emergency is to avoid having one altogether.  Maintenance will make sure that there are no small leaks that can turn into big catastrophes in the future.

How to Prevent the Most Common Plumbing Issues

Every homeowner will at some point have to deal with plumbing issues.  Not only are they inconvenient and if you don’t take care of them right away you could be faced with water or structural damage to your home.  The best solution is to prevent plumbing issues from happening in the first place so here is how to prevent the most common plumbing issues from happening to your home.

  1. Be careful what you are putting down your kitchen sink. Food particles combined with grease can solidify in your pipes and leave you with a backed up sink and a nasty clog.  Keep the plug in the sink to keep solid particles from going down the drains and don’t pour grease down the kitchen sink.
  2. Be wary of slow drains. When it takes longer than it should for your sink or bathtub to drain that is a pretty good indication that there is a clog and you should deal with that immediately.  You can at this point try some chemical cleaners, if you are hesitant to use chemicals then try using some boiling water down the drain.  If that doesn’t solve the issue then it is time to call a plumber.
  3. Check the hoses that connect to the washing machine, they will crack eventually and you don’t want a flooded laundry room. The moment there is the tiniest of leaks then it is time to replace it, it’s an easy fix.
  4. Turn the water off to outside taps. If you still have water in the pipes that connect to outside taps you run the risk of leaks due to the cold winter temperatures.
  5. Wrap all of your exposed pipes in insulation before winter comes. It will help prevent water from freezing and then having the same pipes burst.
  6. Be careful what you flush down the toilet. Your pipes can’t handle things like diapers, sanitary napkins or toys.  Plumbers are often called out to unblock toilets after hours and those toilets were blocked because of what people tried to flush.  You can completely avoid this altogether with a little diligence.
  7. If you find water where it isn’t supposed to be then you need to take care of that problem right away. If there is water or dampness in attics or basement then you need to find the source of the leak and get it repaired before the damage becomes unmanageable.
  8. Find the main water valve in the event that you have to turn the water off. In the even that you have a leak or a broken pipe make sure you know how to turn the water off so as to minimize damage.

This is all part of homeownership and the regular maintenance that goes along with it.  Set aside time every 6 months or at least once per year to perform regular checks on your home to make sure everything is running properly.