PlumbingHow to Handle the Most Common Plumbing Emergencies

March 21, 2018

Life at home should be a place to feel safe and relaxed. It should not be a place with added stress or expenses, but sometimes, that’s what can happen if you get a major plumbing emergency. If you want to avoid that kind of disruption to your life, we’ve got some tips to help deal with these situations.

Leaks in Fixtures

Leaking FixturesSome people might debate whether this is even an emergency, but no one can deny how irritating it gets if you’re in earshot. Another thing that’s not great is the way it adds to your water bill at the end of the month.

A fixture that leaks can often be solved by changing out a couple of small, easily replaceable parts known as either the O-ring, or the washer. You can buy these parts cheaply, and with a wrench, you can easily open up a fixture and swap the parts out.

Blockage in Your Drains

Blocked DrainsThe chief cause of a blocked drain is neglect, because this particular emergency gives you plenty of warning that it’s coming. Drains get blocked when something—either hair in the bathroom, or food in the kitchen—get caught in the drain instead of flowing away.

This trapped matter acts as an anchor, and more matter gets caught on it, building up in size. Eventually, it forms a partial block. A partial block is something you’ll first notice as a slow drain, meaning your water empties out of the sink or tub slower than it used to.

You should use either a mechanical solution, like a plunger or plumbing snake, or a chemical solution like drain cleaner to deal with this. Take care with drain cleaner though; too much of it can actually damage pipes.

Overflow from Toilets

Overflowing ToiletA toilet overflowing is not just a health risk, it also means that particular toilet is unusable until the blockage inside is removed.

If it’s the only toilet in a home, then this is disastrous, as no more toilet availability forces everyone to leave the home if they need to relieve themselves.

Aside from taking great care to clean the mess, you should address the blockage. Use a mechanical tool like a plunger or plumbing snake to clear a blockage if it’s close to the toilet.

If it’s further down the line, you’ll likely need a professional to handle it. Once the obstruction is clear do not flush objects down the toilet that are not human waste or toilet paper. Even paper towels can jam a pipe.

Burst Pipes

Burst PipeA burst pipe can be just about the most serious and expensive plumbing emergency you can have. If your water pipe has burst, you’ll have to shut off the water supply to the home entirely and try to locate where the break occurred.

Leaving the water on means that water is leaking at the location of the break which could cause water damage to the wall, floor or ceiling the burst is located in. If a drainage pipe has burst, this presents a health threat.

All water in the home, including toilet water, may now be exiting into the home somewhere instead of the sewer. You need to try to track down where the burst is, and see how accessible it is, then bring in professionals to assess the extent of the work.

If you want to keep enjoying a good home life in Owasso, OK, you can help keep your plumbing emergencies under control by acting calmly and calling the professionals if you need to.