Keeping an eye on your utilities is a good way to reduce the impact of potential problems. Your plumbing system is no different, and it helps to be aware of the most common problems. Depending on the degree of the problem, you may be able to perform DIY plumbing repair on your own. Let’s examine 13 of the most common plumbing services and what it might take to address them.
Common Faucet Problems
Your home has various faucets in rooms like the bathroom and kitchen. Because faucets bring water from your plumbing, common problems can reduce or cut off water flow. In some cases you’re dealing with the opposite problem, which is too much water dripping out from the faucet.
Faucet Spout Is Leaking
What creates this problem? Faucets with two handles are referred to as cartridge-style faucets. These cartridges are valves that control water flowing into the spout. When a cartridge is damaged, it can cause a leak. It might also be a corroded valve seat, which links the faucet and spot together.
How do I fix it? Locating the broken or worn-down part and replacing it should deal with the leak. If it doesn’t, more than one component may be damaged.
Estimated repair cost: Replacement parts for the cartridges or valve seat can run between just a few dollars to around $80 depending on the make and model.
Faucet Base Is Leaking
What causes this problem? A Majority of the time, a leak at the base is because the seal or O-ring has worn out. Without a firm seal, water can push through the stem and start leaking.
How do I fix it? Sometimes the leak can be resolved with a good cleaning of the seal and O-ring. If not, the component will have to be replaced.
Estimated repair cost: An individual O-ring costs about $2. It might be a good idea to choose a pack of several so that you can swiftly take care of this plumbing repair job again the next time a leak shows up.
Faucet Is Leaking Underneath the Sink
What causes this problem? An insecure connection is the most common culprit. This might be where the sink’s pipes connect to the main water supply as well as by the drain or P-trap connection. Particularly old faucets might be corroded to the point where they can’t maintain firm connections.
How do I fix it? Discovering the source of your leak is needed since this leak might not be easily noticeable. If securing the connections doesn’t fix things, you’ll want to check the faucet itself.
Estimated repair cost: The cost to resolve things can fluctuate depending on where the leak is coming from, especially if water damage is discovered.
Common Toilet Problems
We count on our toilets to function cleanly and efficiently. If your toilet is dealing with a problem, you’ll want to check these places first.
Toilet Is Clogged
What causes this problem? Even a limited clog can slow the drainage of your toilet. For most clogs, a trustworthy plunger will be your first line of defense.
How do I fix it? Lift the flapper valve to observe how the toilet is draining. Slow or no drainage is a good sign there’s a clog. You should use a plunger to try to clear the clog, or a toilet snake if that doesn’t work.
Estimated repair cost: In many cases, removing a clog from your toilet won’t cost you a thing. When the plunger doesn’t work, the clog could be deeper in the pipes. At this point it may be a good idea to employ local plumbing services in Manassas.
Toilet Is Running
What causes this problem? Toilets replenish their water supply from the tank after each flush. When surplus water comes from the tank, it makes your toilet run constantly. Replacing one or several parts should take care of things.
How do I fix it? It could be the float arm, the flapper or the refill tube since a problem with any of these parts can lead to a running toilet. You can monitor the flushing/refilling cycle to pinpoint where the issue is.
Estimated repair cost: These components vary in cost between $13 and $70. There’s a possibility the toilet is running simply because something has slipped out of place. In this case, it may be free to take care of your problem!
Toilet Is Leaking from the Tank
What causes this problem? Toilet tanks are made from materials like porcelain. Barring damage to the tank itself, the leak is probably coming from a worn-down rubber seal fixed to places like the bolts, the spud washer or the refill valve.
How do I fix it? Test the water level inside the tank, as you might be able to narrow down the leak’s location. You’ll then want to drain the tank and separate it from the toilet bowl. You will remove the fill valve and the connection bolts first, inspecting the spud washer when the tank is free. Look for defective rubber or signs of corrosion.
Estimated repair cost: These rubber seals are typically only a few dollars. If the tank itself is cracked, however, a replacement might cost upward of $200. This may be best left to professional plumbing companies who handle the process quickly and efficiently.
Toilet Is Loose
What causes this problem? If your toilet appears wobbly or loose, it may be a damaged bolt or the wax seal ring running around the base. It may also be the toilet flange, which joins the bowl to your home’s drainage system.
How do I fix it? Tightening the bolts is easy, as is replacing them. If the issue is the wax seal or the flange, you’ll want to be careful not to damage the toilet bowl. Some homeowners favor having professional plumbing services in Manassas when the toilet has to be disconnected.
Estimated repair cost: Replacement bolts are inexpensive, with replacement flanges averaging $20 or so.
Common Low Water Pressure Problems
Inferior water pressure can make all sorts of household duties more challenging and time-consuming. It’s particularly irritating when it is affecting key fixtures including the showerhead or the kitchen sink.
Low Water Pressure in the Shower
What causes this problem? If your shower’s water pressure is too low, it can be a problem with a valve or mineral buildup inside the showerhead. A dirty shower can be cleaned, but damage to the showerhead might make replacing it the most cost-effective solution.
How do I fix it? Let the shower head sit in vinegar for a long time. This should remove sediment or other clogs. Readjusting the pressure valve might also help. If the pressure is still too low, swapping to another showerhead may resolve things.
Estimated repair cost: Cleaning the showerhead is free, and it’s recommended you try this first just in case. When swapping to a different make and model, the cost will vary depending on what you go with.
Low Water Pressure in the Kitchen Sink
What causes this problem? Two common causes of bad water pressure in your kitchen faucet are a clogged aerator or a clogged cartridge. The aerator is right up against the spout, adding air into the water as it passes through. Cartridges regulate the flow of hot vs. cold water.
How do I fix it? Cleaning the aerator may address your water pressure problem. Exchanging the faucet’s cartridges may also handle things.
Estimated repair cost: Replacing the aerator can cost around $5 and $25 depending on which model you choose. Cartridges often average $45 to $60.
Common Drain Problems
A problem with your drain can slow cooking and cleaning down. And if it’s completely clogged, you’ll have to clear it before you can use the sink or tub again. Since drains are only supposed to carry water out of your home, problems center around being unable to do so.
Drain Is Clogged
What causes this problem? Large objects, mineral buildup and other materials can collect in the drain, stopping it up. This can happen gradually or all at once depending on the nature of the clog.
How do I fix it? There are lots of options for clearing out drain clogs. Some chemicals can help move clogs into the rest of the plumbing while a drain snake reaches in and pulls solid material out. Deeper clogs might need professional help.
Estimated repair cost: The cost for these materials is comparatively low, between $8 and $30. If you can’t remove the clog, local plumbing services in Manassas can help.
Drain Is Slow
What causes this problem? This is most likely a clog in progress. It hasn’t entirely blocked the drain yet, but an obstruction has formed.
How do I fix it? You can likely clear this with chemicals or a snake. In some cases it may solve itself, but you don’t want to risk it turning into a complete clog.
Estimated repair cost: Materials will probably cost between $8 and $30 depending on brand choices. The particular nature of the clog could make one or the other more useful.
Common Burst Pipe Problems
A burst pipe is a serious issue that can damage not just your plumbing but areas of your home around it. Ultimately any burst pipe problem will be traced back to the damaged piping. In certain cases other problems like water damage or low water pressure will present themselves first.
Burst Pipe That’s Frozen
What causes this problem? Expanding ice or trying to wrench a frozen pipe free can cause this problem. Most homes are warm enough to stop the pipes from freezing, but severe cold and low use can result in freezing.
How do I fix it? You’ll want to wait until the pipe is thawed out before you can initiate repairs. The water supply will be shut off while the section of pipe is replaced. If water damage has occurred, you may need extra plumbing repair.
Estimated repair cost: Costs will vary depending on the extent of the damage. Larger sections of piping are more expensive, especially if they are made from a high-quality material. You might pay anywhere from $30 to more than $150
Burst Pipe That’s Behind a Wall
What causes this problem? Damage, corrosion and even pests can result in a burst pipe in your home. With the added challenge of the piping being tucked away behind a wall, this could be a task more appropriate for local plumbing companies in Manassas.
How do I fix it? Replacing a broken pipe requires getting to the piping itself. This can be more challenging when the pipe is behind a wall. You may have to clear a large enough section away where work can be managed comfortably.
Estimated repair cost: This problem may need specialized tools and experience thanks to cramped working conditions and corroded piping. If you don’t have this equipment on hand, the job may be more appropriate for professionals. Expert plumbing repair can find burst pipes behind walls and resolve the problem. Average costs can vary considerably, usually around $150.