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7 Plumbing Issues that Require Immediate Attention

7 Plumbing Issues that Require Immediate Attention

Plumbing emergencies usually happen at the worst time. It’s always when you least expect it that you have to face leaks, floods, and lack of water. For things to get even worse, DIY work often doesn’t do the trick with large plumbing issues and might even lead to more problems. However, there’s a way to prevent all of this and ensure safety for your home and its residents. 

The key to living a life free of plumbing issues lies in the proper care of the system. When you recognize the common plumbing issues and take action on time, you can rest assured your household is protected from damage. To help you understand plumbing emergencies and act upon them, we composed a list of 7 plumbing issues that require immediate attention. We also added some extra tips for preventing and resolving these situations in the future. 

What is a Plumbing Emergency?

As you already know, a lot of plumbing issues can wait. Whether it’s because of a tight budget or a general inconvenience, most homeowners tend to delay working on the plumbing system. That’s all normal and understandable as long as a daily issue is not confused with an emergency. Unfortunately, it’s easy to overlook an emerging threat to the home and make an expensive and bothersome mistake. 

Because we want to save you from these common pitfalls, we explain what is considered a plumbing emergency and list the most common ones in every household. Now, when it comes to the former, it’s enough to think about the excessive damage in the house and compromised safety of the residents. Such threats usually come from damaged pipes, clogged drains, gas leaks, and similar situations that are more severe than usual. When it comes to the latter, read on to find out what you can expect in your home.

7 Common Plumbing Emergencies that Require Immediate Attention

Clogged Drains 

There’s probably nothing more frustrating than a clogged drain. Not only that clogs in the sink or shower are challenging to unclog, but they disrupt the daily routine as well. When the water is slow to drain due to the blockage in the system, everyone in the household is affected. Suddenly, it’s hard to clean the dishes, and showers can take hours. If this doesn’t sound like an emergency, nothing does. 

Before you call a plumber to unclog your drain, you can try a few easy solutions. For example, a sink plunger or a sink drain auger might help you resolve the issue at a low cost. However, if these or similar DIY solutions don’t help, it’s best to contact a professional

Blocked Toilets

A blocked toilet is one of the most common emergency plumbing problems in residential buildings. Inconvenient as it is, the issue causes a serious mess and damage to the flooring in the house. Leave it be for a day or two, and you’ll see the costly consequences right away. 

A locked or overflowed toilet is an emergency you should take care of as soon as you can. If a clog is a culprit, you might be able to resolve the issue by using a toilet plunger. On the other hand, if you can’t find the root of the problem straight away, don’t hesitate to call an experienced and qualified plumber. A professional will act quickly to prevent further damage to your home. 

Water Leaks

Water leaks are on our list of plumbing emergencies for a good reason. No matter how small or big, leaks tend to leave a lot of damage behind. They lead to mold, mildew, wood rot, and even foundation deterioration. Thus, early water leak detection and repair are crucial for keeping the home safe. 

If you suspect a leak in the plumbing system, act on it immediately. You can try to resolve it on your own or call a trusted plumber. However, we don’t recommend DIY work if the problem is larger than a leaking faucet or well hidden from the eye. If the only things you see are water spots on the wall and ceiling or other similar signals, it’s best to let professionals resolve the issue. 

Frozen Pipes

Those who live in cold climates have problems with frozen pipes quite often. During the winter, pipes are exposed to rain, snow, and extremely low temperatures, which leads to cracks in the material, and consequently, excessive leaks and damages. 

Although we agree you can’t control the weather, you can prevent emergency plumbing situations with simple preparation. In this particular case, you should inspect and insulate the pipes before the winter starts. When cold air and other weather threats can’t reach the pipes, there’s no risk of damage. It’s as simple as that.

Water Heater Malfunction

Did you ever have a problem with too hot or cold water under the shower? If not, you’re one lucky homeowner! The truth is, most people experience water heater malfunction at some point. Water heaters are prone to damage and wear just like any other device in the household. As a result, the water starts turning too hot or cold to be pleasant for use. 

It’s hard to say what can be behind these two problems. Water heaters can malfunction for many reasons, from sediment build ups to old-age. If you have issues with the water flow or temperature, it’s best to call a plumber. A professional will inspect your water heater and resolve the issue or provide much-needed advice on the matter. 

Sewer Backup 

Sewer backup is a serious plumbing issue you should resolve as fast as you can. The blockage in the sewer line makes drains run slower, causes sewage to back up from the cleanout pipe, produces strong odors, and much more. If you already tried all the DIY unclogging options and nothing seems to work, you probably face a sewer backup and need professional help to resolve the issue.

Unbearable Smells

Bad odors can’t be a good sign. If your house is filled with odd smells, there’s probably something wrong with the plumbing system. The reasons behind this bothersome problem can be various. Sometimes, it’s the gas water heater that malfunctions and fills the house with the smell of gas. Other times, the septic system or sump pump is to be blamed. Whatever the cause might be, act immediately to prevent jeopardizing your and your family’s health. 

Plumbing Emergency Tips for DIYers

There are some basics every homeowner should know in case an emergency hits. Look at these DIY tips and keep yourself prepared for unexpected situations:

  • Search for the main water shut-off valve and remember its location so you can turn it off in case of a leak. 
  • Remember that there are valves at each fixture you can shut off to prevent water from flowing at that specific location. 
  • Know how to turn off the water heater in case it malfunctions at some point. 
  • You can use a cup plunger to unclog small drains. 
  • If you can, place a bucket or a thick cloth under the leak to prevent damage to the floors and other areas until you resolve the issue. 
  • Duct-taping a cracked pipe will help you reduce the leak temporarily.

When to Call an Emergency Plumbing Service?

You should rely on emergency plumbing services if you can’t pinpoint the root of your plumbing problem or you’re unable to resolve it on your own. Professionals can help you repair the damage and protect your home further on. Also, keep in mind that professional plumbing services are the best option when you suspect underlying or excessive damage to the plumbing system or your home in general. 

Emergency Plumbing Issues FAQ

To make sure we didn’t miss anything and that you have a good grasp of the topic, we answer frequently asked questions about plumbing emergencies. Stay with us to learn what bothers other homeowners who have the same plumbing problems as you. 

Is water leak an emergency?

Contrary to popular belief, even the smallest leaks stand for an emergency. Of course, if you can manage the leak with a bucket or shut-off valve for the time of being, you don’t have to deal with the issue on the same day. However, that doesn’t mean you should ignore the problem and let it evolve. 

The reason why small leaks are considered an emergency one should act upon as soon as possible is the overall threat they pose to the entire system, and consequently, the house. Even the minor drips can lead to mold and mildew, corrosion, and damage. Although gradual, this damage will come one day as a hurricane and demand costly repairs. To prevent this from happening, we recommend paying attention to every single drip of water in your house before it turns into a huge problem. 

Does homeowners insurance cover water damage?

Most standard home insurance policies cover sudden or accidental water damage. However, if sudden damage occurred due to long-lasting underlying issues, most insurance companies won’t cover the expenses.

How long does it take to fix a plumbing emergency?

Plumbers usually respond quickly and come to the job site within 24 hours in case of emergencies. From then on, it takes anywhere from half an hour to a couple of hours to fix a plumbing emergency. 

How much do plumbers charge for emergency calls?

We can’t say exactly how much will emergency plumbing services cost. The price can vary quite a lot depending on the time of the call, the types of plumbing emergencies, and similar factors. In general, plumbers might charge more for emergencies, but not too much unless you call at an inconvenient time. During the night, weekend, and holidays, you are likely to pay up to one to two times more for plumbing services than usual. 

How to prevent plumbing issues altogether?

Frequent inspections and regular maintenance are the answers to all your plumbing problems. When the plumbing system is free of underlying issues, the risk of sudden damage is extremely low. Thus, keep an eye on your pipes, faucets, drains, and other plumbing parts and consult a professional on the topic. Although it might seem unnecessary and pricey at first, professional plumbing services will help you protect your home and save money in the long term. 

Prevent Plumbing Issues with Hansen Family Plumbing

Hansen Family Plumbing and Air is here to help with emergency plumbing issues in both residential and commercial settings. We are an experienced and highly qualified plumbing company serving in Phoenix, Tempe, Mesa, and other surrounding areas. With many years in the industry and a team of experts, Hansen Family Plumbing and Air offers impeccable plumbing services at all times. 

We are a licensed, bonded, and insured plumbing company in Arizona. Whether you need a backup plan for emergencies or you’re facing one now, Hansen Family Plumbing and Air is your number one choice. Contact us today and schedule a consultation with the experts in the plumbing field.


published on Thursday, April 15th, 2021