5 Common Plumbing Emergencies and How to Fix Them – 2024 Guide

Source: MindSite Web Services

Many studies have shown that leaving your plumbing problems and leaks unrepaired can lead to a waste of over ten thousand gallons or more every year. The average price per gallon in the United States is around $2 for 1000 gallons. If you waste ten thousand gallons every year, you are wasting effectively wasting $20. It might not seem like much, but the chances of the water wastage being higher than just ten thousand gallons are very high. This means you might be wasting $50 every year in the drain.

So, instead of leaving your plumbing emergencies unfixed, you should definitely consider fixing them or at least hiring someone to the repairs for you. Although, fixing everything by yourself can also save you a couple of dollars.

Here are some of the most common plumbing problems that you will be able to fix by yourself, but if you prefer professional help, you can visit this website.

1. Dripping faucet

Source: Jarboe’s Plumbing

This might be the most common plumbing problem that you can find in almost any household. It might seem like nothing at first, but hearing the constant dripping in the kitchen or in the bathroom can become incredibly annoying. Not only will you have to endure such torture, but it will also increase the cost of your bills because such a drip can waste around 3000 gallons per year.

  • Change the O-ring

This might the simplest repair in this entire article because all you have to do is replace the O-ring. The O-ring is a small rubber ring that is located right on the stem. This little rubber is what helps keep the handle in place. But, after so much twisting, pulling and pushing on the handle, the rubber gets worn out and water starts to leak. All you have to do is unscrew or pull off the handle and replace that little rubber and you are done.

  • Faulty valve

This type of valve is usually located under the sink and next to all the metal hoses that go into the valve. The valve controls the flow of water. If you were to shut it off, the faucet won’t work anymore. Over time, the minerals in the water can cause the valve to start corroding which can cause a leak. To repair this you will have to turn off your main water valve and then replace the valve under the sink.

2. Pipe leak

Source: Eyman Plumbing

The piping in and around the house is usually the most common cause of a problem. Most pipes are either made out of polyethylene or more commonly known as PEX. This is a modern solution to plumbing systems, but older houses and buildings use copper pipes. Of course, a metal such as copper is much stronger and durable than plastic such as PEX, but the problem with copper is that it can’t handle sudden changes to temperature. Too low temperatures can cause the copper pipes to contract and too hot temperatures can cause the copper to expand.

All of these movements of expansion and contraction can lead to a loose connection which will cause a leak. To deal with this you will have to tighten the connection between the pipes and maybe even add rubber rings to reduce the chances of a leak. Keep in mind, expansion, and contraction can lead to a burst which is a much bigger problem that you won’t be able to fix. For this, you will need an emergency plumber which you can find at lpgs.

3. Runny toilet

Source: Roto-Rooter

It might not be as common as dripping faucets or leaking pipes, but toilets can waste the highest number of gallons in one year. If you notice that the tank keeps on filling with water even after a couple of minutes after you have flushed that means you have a runny toilet tank.

The fix for this can actually be quite simple. The handle/flap that you use to flush the toilet may have become loose because of extensive usage. Remove the top of the tank and check whether the whole flushing system is in place. Do some adjustments if you need to. You could also try tightening down the screw that holds the flushing mechanism in place.

Even if the whole flushing mechanism is broken, you can buy a brand new one for just a couple of dollars. You won’t have to replace your toilet or the tank.

4. Clogs

A clogged toilet can lead to a lot of water wastage and property damage. If you were to flush with a clogged toilet, the water will start pouring out which may cause serious damage to your flooring inside of your home. This is why it is important that you properly maintain your drain pipes and that none of them are clogged. You have two options when it comes to a clogged drainpipe.

You can either use a plunge for a couple of minutes, but for a more effective way to deal with a clog is by using a drain snake. Unfortunately, not everyone has a drain snake and obtaining one is not that easy. It is much easier to hire a professional to deal with this plumbing emergency than having to buy your own drain snake.

The drain pipe in your sink can also get clogged. This is much easier to clean because you can do it by hand. You will need to unscrew the drain and pull out the drain pipe from below. Put one end of the pipe into a bucket or in the toilet and the other into the faucet. By running water directly into it, you will push out anything stuck into it. You can use any kind of metal stick to unstick material from inside the pipe.

5. Faulty water heater

Source: Home Guides – SFGate

A Burst Pipe

A burst pipe is more than just a plumbing hiccup; it’s a homeowner’s nightmare. Imagine gallons of water gushing into your living space, threatening your cherished possessions and the structural integrity of your home. Such emergencies often arise from freezing temperatures, the relentless wear of corrosion, or the silent killer – excessive water pressure. But fear not! With prompt action and a few essential steps, you can mitigate the damage.

Immediate Action is Key

The moment you suspect a burst pipe, time is of the essence. Your first move? Shut off the water supply. Every home has a main water shutoff valve, often located near the water meter or where the main water line enters the house. Turning this off halts the deluge and saves you from potential flooding.

Next, drain the faucets. Open them all, hot and cold alike. This not only drains residual water but also alleviates pressure in the system, giving that burst pipe some much-needed relief.

Detect and Defend

Now, play detective. Pinpoint the crime scene – the location of the burst. It might be glaringly obvious, like under your kitchen sink, or a covert operation behind walls or ceilings. Once found, if the rupture is minor, you can MacGyver a solution. A simple pipe repair clamp or even a piece of rubber held in place with a C-clamp can act as a temporary shield. Remember, this is just a band-aid solution.

Call in the Cavalry

While your DIY skills might be commendable, plumbing is a craft best left to the experts. A licensed plumber possesses the know-how and specialized tools to ensure a lasting fix. So, once you’ve stemmed the tide, dial a professional.

Post-Battle Cleanup

With the crisis averted, it’s cleanup time. Water damage can be a breeding ground for mold, which poses health risks. Dry out the area using fans and dehumidifiers. And while you’re at it, make a note to regularly inspect your pipes for wear and tear, especially before winter.