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  • Writer's pictureAbdul Trent

10 Most Common Plumbing Emergencies

Do you suspect that your home is suffering from a plumbing emergency? Don’t panic! Here are the 10 most common plumbing emergencies:

1. Leaky Faucets

There’s nothing worse than listening to a leaky faucet all night long. Leaks are a common plumbing emergency, especially in homes with older or original fixtures. This is because parts of the faucet can wear out or loosen over time.

A leaky faucet may not seem like a plumbing emergency, but even a small amount of water can easily lead to big problems in the future. Leaky faucets have been known to cause everything from mold to rust and high water bills.

2. Clogged Sinks

You don’t want to run the faucet in your kitchen or bathroom only to watch the water level rise way beyond what’s considered normal. This is a common sign that you have a clogged sink on your hands.

A minor clog will lead to a slow draining sink, but a serious clog will result in the sink being unable to drain any water at all. Clogged sinks are plumbing emergencies because they severely impact your daily activities, from cooking and cleaning to basic hygiene.

3. Clogged toilets

Toilets are the most commonly used plumbing fixtures in the average household. This means that they suffer from serious wear and tear. When your toilet runs into trouble, it’s most likely to be in the form of a clog.

Clogs are caused by a variety of things, from flushing non-flushable items to flushing something larger than the toilet is designed to handle. Signs of a clogged toilet include refusing to flush, overflowing, and a high water level that won’t go down. It’s true that minor clogs can often be taken care of at home with a plunger, but major clogs or deep clogs should be handled by a licensed plumber.

4. No Hot Water

The unpleasant shock of turning on your shower and getting blasted with ice-cold water is probably not one you’d like to repeat. In most cases, a lack of hot water is caused by problems with the water heater, a burst pipe, or an electrical issue.

In some cases, your utility company is to blame. In any case, cold water coming from the hot water tap is a plumbing emergency that should be fixed ASAP to restore your home’s hot water.

5. Leaky Water Heater

As your hot water heater ages, it becomes more prone to leaks and drips. If you notice a puddle of water under the water heater, see water dripping from the surrounding pipes, or hear a dripping sound coming from the heater, then you most likely have a leaky water heater. When your water heater springs a leak, the wasted water can drive up your water bills over time, so it’s best to have emergency repairs performed right away.

Depending on what the exact issue is, we may be able to perform repairs, or we may have to replace the entire water heater. For example, something like a leaky valve can be repaired, but if your water heater is over 10 years old or has extensive rust, then replacement is your best option. In either case, we’ll do a thorough inspection of the unit and let you know which option is the best long-term fix.

6. Burst Pipes

Burst pipes are most common during winter when water freezing inside the pipes expands and causes the pipe to crack. However, there are a variety of other factors that can result in a burst pipe, including aging pipes and pipes made of certain materials.

A burst pipe is a plumbing emergency because the water spilling from the pipe can cause a lot of damage to your home. If you notice wet spots on your walls or a sudden, massive spike in your utility bill, call us right away!

7. Running Toilet

Does it sound like water is running continuously through your toilet? If so, you most likely have a running toilet on your hands. Although a running toilet won’t damage your home, it can raise your utility bills quite a bit. In fact, a running toilet can use up as much as 200 gallons of water each day.

Running toilets are typically caused by a worn-out flapper valve; this allows water to flow freely from the tank into the toilet. In some cases, running toilets may also be caused by sediment buildup. This is more likely if you live in an area that has hard water. A plumber can inspect your toilet to identify the cause of the problem before providing a repair so that you’re no longer wasting water.

8. Clogged Garbage Disposal

A garbage disposal is a nifty device that allows you to put food waste down the drain of your kitchen sink. Not all homes have a garbage disposal, and homes without them are more prone to clogged kitchen sinks. However, it’s also possible for the garbage disposal to clog from time to time.

Clogged garbage disposals are usually caused by putting non-organic waste down the disposal, running the disposal without water, or grinding tough and fibrous materials like corn husks or potato skins. If your disposal is no longer grinding food, won’t turn on, or makes alarming sounds when it’s on, you should have an emergency plumber inspect it for damage.

9. Worn-Out Fixtures

Plumbing fixtures don’t last forever, and they’ll eventually wear out to the point where they don’t function like they used to. Faucets, showerheads, valves, handles, and spigots should be replaced on a regular basis to keep your home’s plumbing system running smoothly. The older your fixtures become, the more prone they are to issues like leaks, breaks, and water waste.

10. Backed-Up Sewer System

For the majority of homeowners, a backed-up sewer is a literal nightmare. Sewer issues can cause raw sewage to back up into your home through multiple drains, including the toilet, bathtub, and kitchen sink. Yuck! Backed up sewers are a plumbing emergency because they’re a serious threat to your health and safety (not to mention messy and unpleasant!).

Luckily, if you know what signs to look for, you can call our plumbers before it gets that bad. Let us know if you notice a sewer odor coming from the drains, multiple clogged drains, or gurgling toilets.

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