The majority of home and building owners don’t truly recognize how important plumbing is for the building’s integrity until they encounter a problem with it—knowing the most common plumbing issues, how to avoid them, and what to do if you have a plumbing issue is essential.
As your home or building ages, it is perfectly natural that you encounter problems with your plumbing, and being able to identify these nuisances allows you to have the expertise necessary to find a solution. You rely heavily on your plumbing; simple issues can lead to bigger and expensive fixes. Knowing common plumbing problems and how to deal with them helps you know when to grab your tools and when to call the plumber.
Spotting clogged drains and toilets are some of the easier problems to notice. For sinks and showers, if the water doesn’t go down, then you have a clogged drain. For toilets, it is a little bit different; when you flush, the water backs up and, in some cases, even leads to an overflow. Most situations are easy fixes on your own, but sometimes calling the professionals is the faster and easier option.
Clogged drains occur when there is something that jarred in the drain, partially or entirely, which lets a little water or none escape. Depending on the location of the blockage, the reasons vary.
Finding a Solution
First things first, grab your plunger and see if you can unclog the affected area; it is one of the easiest ways that will release any small buildup in your drains. If you see that the blockage is visible, most likely in clogs in your shower, grab a small pair of tweezers to lift it out. Drain snakes and chemical drain cleaners can be used in more serious situations.
When To Call Arco Plumbing
Your drains and toilets are essential items in your home; if you find yourself fighting with the problem and taking more time out of your day, call the experts. One of our plumbers will come directly to your home and resolve the issue immediately.
Living in Illinois, you have had your fair share of long and cold winters, outlining the importance of hot water. A functioning water heater is critical, especially if you want to keep having those nice warm showers and baths after a long day of hard work. Noticing water heater issues can consist of leaking water, weird and loud noises, and big puddles of water surrounding the heater.
There is never one true cause for all water heater problems; it can be due to a buildup of minerals from hard water, rust corrosion, and or age.
What to Do In The Case Of a Problem
Turn the water heater off. This step is important; if the problem is due to sediment buildup, the outcome of keeping it on can be drastic. The next step is to call a plumber; problems with the water heater can be complicated and require the assistance of a professional.
Have you noticed a puddle underneath exposed pipes or a faucet that won’t stop running? Depending on the location of the pipe, they can often be an easy fix. This plumbing issue is one of the most common plumbing problems, and with our expertise, finding a solution is quick and reliable.
It is likely that a piece inside, commonly the washer, has deteriorated or been damaged for running faucets. It can be due to a loose bolt, rusted pipes or bolts, or high water pressure for leaking pipes.
Finding a Solution
Replacing the washer in your faucet will most likely fix the problem. For pipes, tightening bolts with a wrench is an easy solution, but replacing joints and pipes may be the fix if it is because of corrosion or rust. You can deal with both issues on your own, but they require special tools and hard labor, so we recommend that you call the experts.
When To Call Arco Plumbing
When you notice big pools of water underneath a pipe, or a faucet that won’t stop running, and want a fast solution, call us immediately!
The sound of a leaking faucet is irritating, but listening to a constantly running toilet will drive you crazy. Running toilets is annoying because you can still use them, but it constantly makes noises and wastes water.
A constantly running toilet often occurs when the mechanisms within the toilet no longer work. These issues can be an imbalanced float, a leak, loose tubes, alongside many other reasons.
Finding a Solution
An array of different reasons can cause the problem, so you will have to play around with the toilet’s inner workings to spot the issue. Toilet repair kits are available to use, but if you are unfamiliar with fixing toilets, it is best to call the professionals to eliminate any potential risk of causing more expensive damages.
The culprit of horrible showers and delayed time while washing the dishes. As it affects you and your family’s daily routine and schedule, low water pressure is something that many homeowners need to fix right away.
If both you and your neighbors experience the same problem within your homes, the cause is most likely a break in the main water line. You may have low water pressure, but you can take a sigh of relief, knowing nothing in your home is the problem. Small leaks also can be the root cause.
Finding a Solution
If the problem is suspected to be a water main break, there is nothing much you can do besides reporting the problem. Low water pressure due to leaks or buildup in your pipes, you will need to call a plumber to locate the issue and fix it.
Helping our customers find quick and easy solutions in any way possible is what we strive for at Arco Plumbing. Having the information you need to recognize issues and know what to do is something that will help you so much in the future. Remember, if you encounter an issue with your plumbing, do not hesitate to contact Arco Plumbing today!
Purchasing a new house is an incredibly exciting process, whether the property is a first-time home, a dream home, a holiday home, or an investment opportunity. With such an important decision, there are a number of essential checks that must be made before the sale goes ahead, and plumbing is one of them.
Knowing how to check the plumbing of a property in Chicagoland is crucial during the buying process. Not only will thorough plumbing checks bring to light problems that may dissuade you from buying the house, but if you still decide to go ahead with the sale in light of the problems, you’ll know exactly what needs to be addressed going forwards.
Tackling plumbing problems head on will potentially save you a fortune on serious repairs and make sure your new home is perfectly habitable and safe for you, your family, or future tenants. Before you dive into buying a house, here are five ways to check for plumbing issues, and one essential tip to bear in mind when inspecting a Chicagoland property.
The first things that you should check are the water lines and drain lines in the property. These are two fairly simple tests but can reveal a lot about the plumbing. First, check down the drain for signs of corrosion, as whilst rare, this can cause problems. Second, check the visible water lines, such as those underneath the sink in the kitchen, and make sure there are no leaks or discoloration. It’s also worth checking the drainage, simply turn on the faucets, and check to make sure the drainage speed is suitable.
Water heaters generally have a lifespan of about a decade. Inquiring after the age of the heater will tell you how soon it’ll need replacing, and whether you’ll need to budget for the replacement if it’s nearing the 10-year mark. It’s also worthwhile assessing the water heater location, and how much damage potential leaks could cause.
Water pressure may not be the first thing that you look for in a new home, but poor pressure can be a nightmare to deal with. Testing the water pressure in the property with a pressure gauge will give you a pressure reading, that if poor, may reveal that the plumbing pipes need to be unclogged. If the water pressure is too high, it could start to damage the water heater and other appliances around the house.
There are many obvious signs of water damage that may be present when you’re shown around a property. If there has been a leak, either from pipes or the roof, then you may notice brown marks on the ceiling. Equally, there may be signs of water damage in the crawlspace or basement, so it’s important to stay vigilant and check for stains, obvious leaks, and any faulty repair work. Check the toilet for leaks or warping, particularly around the base, and ensure it flushes properly.
The last thing you’ll want to do when moving into a new home is to unexpectedly pay out for brand-new water supply pipes, so it’s certainly worth inquiring about them! It can be helpful to ask the age of the pipes and material, to determine either how long it’ll be until replacement is required, or whether the material is suitable for modern plumbing. If the pipes are constructed from galvanized steel or polybutylene, as an example, they’ll probably need replacing.
Asking questions and performing visual checks will reveal a lot of information about the state of the plumbing in your Chicagoland property investment. Yet, there are some assurances of plumbing adequacy that only a local plumbing service will be able to provide. For the ultimate peace of mind when buying a house, asking a plumber to take a look at the plumbing is a beneficial investment.
With a thorough check of the water supply, drainage, and water pressure, you’ll be able to get a clear indication of the state of the plumbing, and discuss the costs involved in resolving any problems. A skilled plumber will also be able to perform additional checks, such as performing video camera inspections on sewer lines, which may reveal problems that cannot be brought to light by visual checks or questions – unearthing clogs or deterioration in a sewer line after purchasing a property could come with a massive repair bill!
Arco Plumbing has been offering residential, commercial and industrial plumbing services in the Westmont, IL area since 1978. We are a family owned and operated plumbing company that truly cares about getting the job done right. Arco Plumbing has earned a reputation as one of the best plumbing companies in the Chicagoland area. You will find no better workmanship in the area.
We are more than happy to give advice on which solution is most suitable for your needs, depending on your Plumbing Services. We can inspect your property and discuss the various options with you. Our advice is free!
With the cold winter months fast approaching, you will undoubtedly be interested in learning how you can keep your water heater healthy this winter. As well as ensuring that it does not break down when you really need it, you will probably want to find out tips for improving its efficiency and even reducing those ever-expensive utility bills. Well, you came to the right place. In the following post you will find some great actionable advice that will help you to minimize damage to your water heater, while increasing its efficiency and life-expectancy.
This should go without saying really, but as a lot of people don’t seem to know where their water heater is, if they are renting for instance, it is worth mentioning this first. You should not just know where the water heater is in your home, but should make sure that you have clear and unobstructed access to it. Often water heaters are hidden away in the basement or attic and it can mean the plumbing can be quite tricky to reach. So, find yours and make the pathway to it as clear as possible.
It is crucial that you know exactly what type of water heater you have in your home. Is it tank-less water heater or a storage tank heater? Is it propane, electric or even natural gas? Consult your landlord if you are renting or look at the heater or the manual it came with to find out the information. Failing that speak to the company that supplied your water heater. You should also take a note of the serial number and model number, or at least know how to locate this information on the actual tank, as the gallon capacity and age are coded into it. This is essential if you need to refer to your warranty and is typically one of, if not the first question the water heater repair company or a plumber will ask you.
Another piece of information that can be helpful, especially when you are faced with water heater problems, is how you turn the water off. You should also learn how to switch off the power supply or fuel to your water heater too. This is crucial from a safety point of view, if you smell gas or know your water heater is leaking. There is usually a disconnect switch or a gas valve only a few feet away from the heater. Knowing the breaker that is used for your water heater and where the main shut-off gas for your property’s gas supply is located, are also helpful.
The majority of water shut-off valves are situated on the cold side piping above the water heater. You should be able to locate your water shut-off valve entering your home. If opening the breaker box or turning the valve to the off position requires any specific tools, store these somewhere safely, but easily to find. This will make a whole world of difference in time-sensitive situations when you smell gas or water is leaking allover your house.
One of the problems with where water heaters are normally placed in your home is that they are often places where you store stuff away out of sight, out of mind. While you may not know it, this can not only damage the water heater, but pose health and safety risks.
Therefore, it is wise to keep the area surrounding your water heater clear, for some very good reasons such as:
Items that are stored too close to a water heater pose a fire risk
If the water heater starts to leak, you might not be able to catch it soon enough if you can’t see it clearly. This can not only result in needlessly wasting energy as the heater continues to reheat and reheat the water, but can also cause extensive water damage to your property.
A unit operated by a gas fire requires a considerable amount of oxygen to enable it to burn the gas. If something is smothering your water heater or it just can’t get enough oxygen, it can cause damage to the burner chamber or other important parts and even reduce the efficiency of the heater. This can even lead to serious health risks such as carbon monoxide leakages. Carbon monoxide is particularly dangerous because it is odorless and not easily detected.
Every year, at least once, you should drain at least a few gallons of water from your water heater, using the drain valve. You can do this by using either a garden hose or a 5 gallon bucket. When using a hose, run it to a place where the hot water coming out will not cause any damage. With this in mind, it is best to avoid draining the water onto your lawn or yard as it could kill the grass.
A full flush is advised if you notice debris and sediment. A full flush involves turning the temperature right down and completely draining the tank until it is empty. You then turn the water back on, with the drain still open and allow the water to flow out for at least a minute to remove any remaining debris or sediment.
You can turn the thermostat back up to your preferred setting once you have completed the task and the tank is full again.
Begin at the top of your water heater and look out for any serious corrosion or leaks on the valves and piping. With gas-powered water heaters, inspect the draft hood and ensure it is installed correctly. There should always be a few inches of air space between the part that connects to the vent and the tank. Also be aware of any wear and tear or corrosion on the piping and gas line. Thoroughly check where the gas chamber is situated and the thermostat and area below it.
If you happen to spot any charred metal, soot or black residue during your inspection; you should contact a professional to assess and service your water heater as this could be a sign of combustion issues. If you smell any hint of gas, switch your gas supply off immediately and call a professional. With electric-powered water heaters, check for signs of any leaking like residue or rust lines around lower and upper panels that cover the tank’s electrical parts. If you ever smell gas, turn off the gas supply and contact a professional.