What to Do If You Have Frozen Pipes

Most people know that freezing temperatures can lead to plumbing problems. Unfortunately, circumstances can occur where a pipe becomes frozen unexpectedly. If a cold snap starts before you insulate exposed pipes or you are away from home when the cold weather hits, you may find yourself with frozen pipes. Here are some steps to take to minimize the damage to your plumbing and home.

  • Is there damage to the pipe? If water has leaked or you can see pipe damage, shut off the main water valve and call a plumber right away. Make sure to keep electrical appliances away from the leaked water to avoid electrical shock until you can effectively dry the surfaces in your home.
  • No leaks? Turn on the faucets. Turn on the heat and open the faucets. In some cases, the water can begin to thaw and if caught early, the pipes can be undamaged. However, if there are any signs of leaks, shut off the main valve and contact a plumber to repair your plumbing.
  • Do not apply direct heat! Using a space heater to close to a frozen pipe or torch to thaw pipes can be dangerous and cause more damage. Bring up the indoor temperature and keep the faucets open to allow the pipes to thaw if there is no damage.

Insulating pipes and keeping buildings warm can help prevent frozen pipes in cold weather. However, if you find yourself with frozen plumbing, be careful to avoid burst pipes and water damage to your home. Contact a plumber to inspect your plumbing and repair any pipes that are damaged at the first sign of frozen plumbing in your home.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(404) 973-2471

What Are Those Strange Plumbing Sounds?

Your plumbing works day in and day out, usually without a falter. When it does have an issue, it may be a visible leak or a backed-up drain in your kitchen. There are other signs that you may not see, but can hear, that your plumbing may have some trouble. Here are some strange plumbing sounds that can alert you to issues with your pipes, water heater or other components.

Rattling Pipes

Is there a clatter of rattling or vibrating pipes behind your walls or under your floors? Sometimes all that is needed is tightening the pipe brackets to keep them still. However, vibration can be caused by too high of pressure; have the water pressure checked to ensure it is correct.

Hammering or Banging Pipes

Do you hear banging or hammering in your walls? Water valves that shut too abruptly can cause a “water hammer” effect. This can damage your pipes and should be fixed. Talk to your local plumber about adding an arrestor or changing to slower-acting water valves.

Tapping and Crackling Water Heaters

If your tank water heater is making racket, it may need flushing. The minerals that buildup in the tank can cause element issues and corrosion that cause a banging sound. Flushing can remove the minerals and extend the life of your water heater.

Hissing or Squealing Faucets

When your faucets make noises when you turn them on, get them checked out by a plumber. Hissing can mean too high of water pressure and squealing can alert you to valves or washers that need replacement.

Next time your plumbing starts talking, make sure to listen. Strange sounds can identify plumbing issues before they become larger emergencies.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing, Inc.
106-M Oakgrove Road
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Protect Against Plumbing Disasters

Plumbing disasters often occur at the most inopportune times, which is not always a coincidence. The normal use of your plumbing is nothing compared to the times when you have extra guests staying in your home or when you host a large event. Whether it is a big backyard party during the summer or a week of household guests during the holidays, these are the times when a plumbing disaster is more likely to occur. Avoid an inconvenient plumbing problem with these preventive measures.

Add Strainers to Your Bathroom Drains

Keep hair, soap and other debris out of your drains with strainers. These can be the most common reasons for plumbing backups and clogs, especially in the bathroom and with extra people using your facilities.

Avoid Putting Grease Down the Drain

Big events often mean big meals. Avoid allowing grease and fat to be dumped down the drain. Grease can cause clogs and damage to septic systems – scrape grease and fats on plates and pans into the trash to prevent plumbing problems.

Insulate Exposed Pipes

Make sure exposed pipes in attics, crawl spaces, garages and basements are insulated to prevent freezing. If you go away for the winter holidays, you do not want to come home to broken or frozen pipes.

Choose a Plumber

If a plumbing disaster does occur, you do not want to call the first plumber you find through Google. Have a quality plumber on speed dial that offers emergency repairs and meets your qualifications.

Keeping up with preventive measures can help you avoid plumbing emergencies during big events at your home. Make sure everyone in your family knows how to prevent plumbing issues and what to do in an emergency to protect against plumbing disasters.

Posted on behalf of:
Seagraves Plumbing Sewer & Septic
4980 Plant Atkinson Rd SE
Smyrna, GA 30080
(494) 792-2221

Signs Your Water Fixtures Need Replacement

Does your kitchen still have the sink and faucet it had when you bought your home? Are your bathroom sinks and showers looking outdated? Unless you recently remodeled or your home is only a few years old, it is likely your sinks, faucets and showerheads will soon show wear and need replacement. You may not notice the issues since you see them every day, but it may be time to inspect your water fixtures and determine whether it is time for replacement.

Faucets Leaks and Drips

Does your bathroom or kitchen sink faucet drip or leak? Do you hear drips in your shower or tub into the middle of the night? Repair is one option, but sometime old hardware wears out, making it difficult to completely stop leaks on old faucets. It may be better to replace the entire faucet versus another repair.

Sink Surface Damage

If enamel is chipped or the metal is dented in your sinks, it is time to update and replace them with newer versions. These surfaces can last for many years, but eventually they do become worn and can detract from the beauty of your home.

Outdated Styles

There are so many new options for your bathroom and kitchen water fixtures. Just updating your kitchen sink can change the look of the room and many new faucet options offer better function and convenience. The same is true of your bathroom – new faucets and showerheads can improve the style and there are water-efficient options to reduce waste.

When you are ready to replace your kitchen and bathroom water fixtures, contact your local plumber. They can install your new fixtures to ensure they will be properly fitted and endure for many years to come.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing, Inc.
106-M Oakgrove Road
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Buying an Older Home? Use This Plumbing Checklist Before You Buy

Buying a new home can be daunting, especially when you are considering an older home. You may be concerned about hidden costs and repairs that may be revealed after you buy. A thorough home inspection can help uncover possible issues, but home inspectors may not see issues hidden behind walls or under the home in the plumbing. Before you buy, there are some areas that should be inspected by a professional plumber.

Complete Plumbing Inspection

Plumbing problems are not always apparent, especially during a standard home inspection. You need a plumber that can evaluate the type of piping and possible plumbing issues that may surface in the next few years. Some of the plumbing elements that should be inspected before buying an older home include:

  • Water heater performance
  • Type of piping – old lead pipes and polybutylene pipe often will need replacement
  • Video camera inspection of sewer lines
  • Septic system evaluation
  • Inspection of sump or ejector pumps
  • Check for leaking fixtures or pipes
  • Test water pressure and draining performance
  • Water quality testing and well evaluation

Having a professional evaluation of all the plumbing in the home can reveal any possible issues that will need repair or replacement. This can give you a chance to negotiate with the current owner to have plumbing issues resolved or a lower sale price to cover your costs.

Older homes can become money pits if there are hidden problems, especially with your plumbing. It is worth the investment to have a separate plumbing inspection performed to investigate all the items on this checklist to ensure you are making a wise purchase with your new home.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing, Inc.
106-M Oakgrove Road
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Plumbing Issues to Look for When Buying a New Home

If you are contemplating buying a new home, you may be looking at many houses, trying to find the right fit for you and your family. When you narrow it down to a few that have the right attributes you are looking for, it is important to check for any hidden problems. Plumbing issues are often not apparent, especially during typical walk-throughs and even inspections. Here are a few things you can check to identify any possible problems.

Check the Fixtures

When looking at the kitchen and bathrooms, go beyond looking at the features and use the fixtures. Run water in the sinks, flush the toilets and turn on the shower. Watch for any drips or leaks when using these fixtures; it may not be a deal-breaker, but it is good to know if they have been maintained.

Look for Leaks

Keep an eye out for brown or water stains on ceilings or walls. This could indicate a plumbing leak that has occurred, which could also mean mold and other damage you cannot see. Look under the sinks and check for any signs of leaks.

Check the Drains

When you check the fixtures, use enough water to check how quickly the sinks and showers drain. Slow drains can be an indication of a clog, or even bigger issues in the main sewer lines.

If you do notice any problems with the plumbing, it may be worthwhile to hire a plumber for a more thorough inspection. It is better to know ahead of time if anything will need repair; you may be able to have the seller fix these issues as a condition of your sale or negotiate a lower price to encompass the needed plumbing repairs.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(404) 973-2471

Is Leaking Plumbing Inviting Pests into Your Home?

Most people want to keep their homes free from pests, but plumbing problems can be inviting them inside. Ants, mice, rats and many types of insects are drawn to moisture, seeking places that are damp to make their home. If you have leaking pipes in your crawl space, basement or other areas in your home, there is a good chance that pests are trying to invade. Fixing those plumbing issues can help minimize mold and water damage, as well as minimize the attraction to pests.

Small Leaks Can Create a Big Pest Problem

It doesn’t take a broken pipe or large leak to attract pests. A small amount of condensation or slow drip is enough to create a moist environment that cockroaches, mice, termites and other types of pests, love. These leaks can be happening in inconspicuous places but could be at the root of your pest problem. Here are a few common leak areas:

  • Around water heaters
  • Under your home in crawl spaces
  • In your basement
  • Under sinks
  • Behind walls and under floors
  • Around appliances with water hook-ups

Look for mold, mildew, water stains or rotting wood; these are signs of too much moisture that may be derived from plumbing leaks. Not only does it damage your home and cause possible health issues, it puts out an invitation to pests to make your home their home.

If you have a pest problem, look for possible plumbing leaks that can be making the issue worse. Call your local plumber to have these issues fixed to help make your home less attractive to insects and rodents, as well as prevent further damage to your home.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing, Inc.
106-M Oakgrove Road
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Drips Under Your Sink? Don’t Wait Too Long to Get It Fixed

Most people have dealt with a drip or slow leak from the pipes under the sink. Whether it is in the kitchen or bathroom, there are often several connections where a small leak can occur in the plumbing. It may seem inconsequential, since the leak only causes an occasion drip. Before you just wrap some plumber’s tape around the joint or stick a bucket under the sink to catch the drips, here are some reasons to get that leak fixed sooner than later.

Small Drips Add Up Fast

A drip from a faucet or leaking pipe can lead to a big amount of water waste. Even if there are only a few drips a minute, that can end up being a gallon or more water wasted every day. While a gallon may not seem like much, that is 365 gallons wasted over a year, water that could be used elsewhere.

Small Leaks Can Become Big at Anytime

If there is a small leak, it will only get worse. It may take weeks or even months, but when it grows, it may become a large leak all at once. You may or may not be home at the time, which could lead to serious damage in your home. A flowing leak from a pipe under a sink can ruin flooring and anything under the room. It is much less costly to have it repaired than to replace floors, ceilings and other items in your home.

Don’t ignore plumbing leaks. Whether it is a faucet, pipe or running toilet, call your local plumber to get it fixed. It will stop water waste and protect you from serious, expensive damage to your home.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(404) 973-2471

Why Is My Water Pressure So Low?

If you have low water pressure, everything using water takes longer. Showers can take a few extra minutes, filling the sink or cooking pots takes longer and running a bath can seem to take forever. Low water pressure is not necessarily a bad idea – it can help reduce the amount of water you use. However, you should be receiving the pressure you desire and if it is low, you need to find out the reason.

There are a few different reasons you may be experiencing low water pressure in your home. To troubleshoot the issue, you first need to determine if it is only certain water fixtures or rooms that experience low pressure or the entire house. If it is only the bathroom or just the kitchen sink, you are most likely dealing with a fixture issue. If it is only hot water, not cold water, then it could be a problem with your water heater, not the plumbing.

When the water pressure is low throughout your house, it could be caused by a couple dynamics. If you are on city water, ask your neighbors about their water pressure – it may be the city water main that is producing low pressure. You could also have a water pressure reducing valve in place that you were not aware of that needs adjustment. You should check to make sure your main water valve is completely open as this could restrict water into your home.

If you are still unsure of why you have low water pressure, call your local plumber. They can inspect your plumbing and provide answers as well as solutions to increase the water pressure in your home.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing, Inc.
106-M Oakgrove Road
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Distinct Sounds of Plumbing Issues

You know what to look for when it comes to plumbing problems. A pool of water under the sink or a water spot on the ceiling below a bathroom are obvious visual signs of a plumbing issue. But do you know what to listen for when it comes to plumbing problems in your home? Here are some sounds that could be alerting you to call in a plumber.

  • Banging in the pipes when water is turned off. Do you hear banging or knocking in your water pipes when water shuts off? This is often called a water hammer and can be an issue with a water valve in your plumbing system. A valve that closes quickly can cause these noises, alerting you to pressure being exerted on your pipes. A plumber can add an absorber to the valve to reduce damage to your pipes.
  • Water turning on and off. If it sounds like water is turning on and off by itself, you may have a leaking toilet. The seal or flapper at the bottom of the tank may be leaking, causing the toilet to refill over and over, even when it is not in use.
  • Banging or pounding when the water is on. If your pipes make sounds when the water is running, it can be a few different issues. If you are on city water, it could be a pressure issue. It could also be coming from your water heater, echoing through the pipes.

Any strange noises in your plumbing is worth a call to your local plumber. Get the problem diagnosed and fixed before it becomes a bigger issue like a burst pipe is always a good idea.

Posted on behalf of:
Seagraves Plumbing Sewer & Septic
4980 Plant Atkinson Rd SE
Smyrna, GA 30080
(494) 792-2221