When you are faced with a plumbing emergency, it can be a stressful time. Depending on the severity of the situation, an emergency plumbing situation can quickly become dangerous if not resolved quickly. If your house is flooding or the water pressure in your home is too low to operate faucets and showers safely, these are signs that there is a plumbing problem that needs to be addressed immediately. Whether you have a burst pipe, clogged toilet or leaky faucet, there are different plumbing services that should be contacted in case of an emergency. In this article we will go over some general guidelines on when you need emergency plumbing services, as well as common issues and their solutions.
When Should You Call Emergency Plumbing Services
Water Pressure Issues
If there is a noticeable drop in water pressure or the water flow has stopped, there may be a leak in your water pipes. A leak can be caused by a number of different factors, including a break in the pipes or the formation of a clog further down the line. If the leak is small, you may be able to fix it yourself by tightening a connection or removing debris from the pipe. However, if the leak is significant or you don’t know how to fix it, you will need to call emergency plumbing services as soon as possible.
Sewer Drainage Issues
When not properly installed or maintained, a sewer line can become clogged or damaged, causing sewage to back up into your home. A clogged or damaged sewer line can cause health and safety risks, including the risk of sewage spilling out of the drain and into your home.
If you notice sewage bubbling up out of a drain or a strong smell coming from a toilet, there is a problem with the sewer line. It is best to call emergency plumbing services immediately, as sewage can quickly spread throughout the house. The longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.
Water Heater Issues
If the water heater is leaking, hissing or making odd noises, it is time to call emergency plumbing services. Even if the water heater doesn’t look visibly damaged, it is a good idea to have it checked out by a professional. High-pressure water leaks can often go unnoticed, and a small leak can quickly turn into a major problem if not addressed quickly. If the water heater is leaking, it is probably due to one of two things. Either the element is broken or the tank is too full of sediment. The best way to avoid water heater issues is to clean the tank and flush the elements every year.
If the toilet is clogged, you may be able to clear the clog by plunging it. However, if the clog is stuck further down the pipeline, plunging may push it further into the pipes, which could result in a backup and cause sewage to spill out of the toilet bowl. If the toilet is overflowing, you will want to shut off the water supply. From there, you can use a plunger to try and suck the water back down into the toilet bowl. If the water doesn’t go down, you may need to have emergency plumbing services resolve the issue.
If you notice a pipe has burst, it is important to turn off the water supply to the entire house to prevent further damage. If a pipe burst inside the wall, emergency plumbing services will need to come out to cut a hole in the wall to access it. A burst pipe outside the house can be fixed by the plumber in less time.
Pipes can burst for a variety of reasons. The most common culprit is the freeze/thaw cycle experienced by many areas during the winter. Other causes can be age of the pipes, corrosion and poor installation.
What To Look for In Emergency Plumbing Services
In a perfect world, our plumbing would never break. Unfortunately, it’s not a perfect world. Even if you take every precaution to prevent catastrophe from striking, your plumbing can and will inevitably fail at some point. The important thing is being prepared for when that time comes. That’s why it’s important to have emergency plumbing services on hand in case something goes wrong. Here are some things you should look for in any potential service provider before signing on with them:
The first thing you should do when looking for emergency plumbing services is researching the company’s reputation. You can do this by reading customer reviews on their website, or by searching for reviews on third-party review sites like Yelp. There are also several industry-specific review sites like Angie’s List for plumbers, so be sure to check those out as well. A company with a great reputation is one that has an excellent track record of providing quality services to its customers. A good reputation indicates that a company has been in business for a while, is well-established, and has a loyal customer base. A reputable company is also likely to be more trustworthy and reliable.
Licensing and Certification
While certifications don’t necessarily guarantee the quality of service, they do at least show that the company has at least met some minimum standard of competence. It’s a good idea to only hire plumbing services that are licensed by the state and/or certified by an industry-specific organization. The latter will typically be a third-party certification company. In general, certifications are a good indicator that a company is trustworthy and professional enough to merit your business. The most common certifications for plumbers are:
– Licensed master plumber – this is the highest level of certification for plumbers. It means that the plumber has passed an exam, conducted a certain number of hours of field experience, and has a certain amount of practical experience.
– Journeyman plumber – This is the second-highest level of certification for plumbers. To get this certification, a person has to have work experience as an apprentice, pass an exam, and have a certain amount of practical experience.
– Apprentice plumber – This is the lowest level of certification for plumbers. To get this certification, a person has to have a certain amount of on-the-job training followed by an exam.
During an emergency, you want an emergency plumbing services company that’s responsive, reliable, and timely. This will make the process easier on both you and the plumber. If possible, try to contact the company during regular business hours to see how long they take to respond. If you call after hours and get a voicemail, make sure that the company leaves an appropriate message about when someone will get back to you. This will give you an idea of how long you can expect to wait for help during an emergency.
The cost of emergency plumbing services can vary wildly depending on the type of service and the company you use. While you should definitely shop around, don’t base your decision solely on price. Instead, you should consider the following things:
– Does the emergency plumbing services company charge by the hour or by the job? Hourly rates are often a sign of a disorganized or inefficient company. On the other hand, fixed rates are a sign that the company is confident in its ability to finish the job quickly.
– How many technicians will be working on your job? A larger team of plumbers can finish tasks quicker and more efficiently than one person.
– Do they offer any coupons or discounts? While coupons don’t necessarily indicate a low price, they can still help you save money
Repairs and Maintenance Options
Finally, you should make sure that the emergency plumbing services company offers repair and maintenance solutions. This will save you time and money in the long run. If you can’t find a company that offers both repair and maintenance services, make sure that the company has a good track record of solving plumbing issues.
How Do I Avoid Emergency Plumbing Issues?
The best way to avoid plumbing issues is by having them taken care of as soon as they arise. For example, if you have a slow leak, it is best to call a plumber as soon as possible so the leak can be fixed before it becomes a problem. It’s also a good idea to keep all your fixtures and pipes well maintained. This means periodically cleaning your faucets, toilets and sinks and replacing any worn out pipes. If you are experiencing problems with your plumbing, it may be due to a buildup of sediment in your pipes and fixtures. To prevent major plumbing issues, you can use a plumbing snake to unclog your pipes or a water softener to flush out the pipes.
How To Protect Your Sewer Line
A clogged or damaged sewer line from tree roots especially can cause significant damage to your home, as well as a health and safety risk. To protect yourself from costly repairs, you can follow a few simple guidelines.
What you can do to solve the problem of damaging tree roots:
- Know the warning signs: frequent clogged drains, slow-flowing drains and overflowing drains
- Schedule annual drain and sewer line inspections
- Schedule regular sewer line cleanings to prevent root growth
If your drains clog frequently, we recommend calling emergency plumbing services to have your drain and sewer lines inspected. One of our plumbers at Palo Alto Plumbing can run a camera probe through your pipes to find any damaged areas. Once we complete the inspection, we’ll offer the necessary recommendations. If you have major tree root damage, we may recommend that the lines be replaced.
Plumbing issues can be a pain, but they’re inevitable. There’s nothing you can do to prevent them, so it’s best to be prepared. That way, when a plumbing emergency comes up, you’ll know what to do. When these types of issues arise, you don’t have time to waste. You need someone to respond quickly so the issue can be fixed before it becomes a bigger problem. Emergency plumbing services like Palo Alto Plumbing are here for exactly that reason, and we can take the stress out of an already stressful situation by responding quickly and repairing your plumbing so you can get back to your life.
Need Emergency Plumbing Services? Palo Alto Plumbing Can Help
Call Palo Alto Plumbing at (650) 374-0868 for a free service estimate on emergency plumbing services. Our friendly staff is here to help answer any additional questions you might have.