Plumbing is not at all an easy task and comes with a lot of problems in all shapes and sizes. Some problems are inexpensive while some might be heavy to your pockets; some might get fixed in no time, while some might take hours to get right. Similarly, some issues are those which you can fix by yourself, following a DIY, but some issues require professional help from specialized engineers.
Such problems can differ from a mere dripping faucet to a severe pipe leak damaging the walls and wasting gallons of water.
In this article, we will discuss the top 10 major plumbing problems that anyone can go through, whether it is a domestic plumbing or an industrial plumbing. As we all know prevention is better than cure, you can always prevent such issues if you already know in advance what these are and how to deal with them.
The top 10 major plumbing issues common to any household or enterprise are –
- Dripping faucets – This is the most common and most likely the easiest problem to deal with. There is rarely anyone who has never experienced a dripping faucet. As minor as the issue may seem, a dripping faucet can be very irritating and result into a great loss of water over time. If not fixed over a year, it can drip away gallons of water and speed your water bill to another level. The dripping usually occurs due to a faulty internal washer and can be fixed by any common person if they have the correct supply and tools.
- Leaky pipes – Again, a very common problem almost everywhere. Leaky pipes are not only great trouble but can severely damage furniture and the floor if not fixed on time. Leaks generally happen at pipe joints. For a temporary fix, you can go with tapes, pipe glue, fillers or compounds but for a permanent fix, replacement is the only solution.
- Slow draining sinks – This problem usually occurs in kitchen sinks, due to the blockage in the route. Such blockage can be caused by food items stuck down the drain, spilling of grease, or any substance in the drain passage which does not belong there. While, if the same happens in a bathroom drain, it is mainly due to a knot of hair or soap. Getting rid of a clogged drain is not very tough and can be easily done by a plunger, baking soda/vinegar solution, etc. If this entire fixing process still does not help the problem, consider contacting a professional drain plumber/engineer as if not tackled in time, the problem would only worsen in the future.
- Blogged bath/shower drains – Just like slow draining bathroom sinks, shower and bath drains can also get clogged due to hair and soap. A plunger can treat such a blockage. You can also buy a drain guard to catch hair to minimize this problem.
- Clogged toilets – A mixture of paper and human waste can cause the toilet to clog. In some situations, it can also be due to the disposal of baby diapers, sanitary napkins, etc. down the flush. The toilet bowl fills up with the water and does not drain away the water when there is such a clog. This can be fixed by a plunger but if that does not help, you can also try using a sewer snake or a drain auger.
- Running toilets – Now this is one of the most expensive problems related to plumbing. A running toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water each day depending on the intensity of water running off. This can raise your water bill innumerably. This problem occurs generally due to a faulty valve and can be fixed with a handy toilet repair kit.
- Faulty water heaters – This problem is experienced when you are enjoying a hot shower, and the water suddenly turns cold. There are a lot of reasons that cause the water heater to fail; some of them being, the pilot light going out, the build-up of sediment in the tank, faulty thermostat, etc. Most of the times, such a problem requires professional help. If it is only the pilot light that needs to be re-lighted, it can be done on your own. Other than that, a specialized engineer would be required to take care of your problem.
- Low water pressure – If you notice a change of the speed in the gushing of water down your tap, it might be due to the low water pressure problem. This generally happens in homes that have become old and the plumbing system hasn’t been changed ever since. This can be caused by leaky pipes, the build-up of sediments and minerals in taps, etc. you can soak the tap or showerhead (whichever is at fault) in vinegar to get rid of the unwanted sediment hindering the water speed.
- Sewer backup system – sewer backup systems are no less than night terrors. They are not only horrific but smelly and nasty. These can also be expensive to fix if found at fault. This can occur mainly due to either a clogged sewer, tree roots invading pipes, or old sewer lines breaking. To fix this issue you will need professional plumbers as this problem cannot be dealt with individually.
- Jammed garbage disposal – This problem can be caused by running these disposals without water, disposing of certain food items that cause blockage, etc. to fix this issue, always start by hitting the reset button. If the resetting does not work, open the system up and look for the problem.