Whether you're building a new home or moving into an existing house in Burnaby or Coquitlam, plumbing problems are inevitable. Here, we'll list some of the most common residential plumbing issues and the answers to frequently asked plumbing repair questions.
1. Turning the Water Off Before Going on Vacation: Is It Necessary?
You've booked the hotel, bought plane tickets and found someone to take care of your pets. Every item on the pre-trip to-do list is done, but you still need to remember something.
Many Burnaby homeowners forget to shut off their water before vacation, which can be costly. While most trips are uneventful—and homes' water systems are just fine while the owners are away—problems can still arise.
While the family is away, even a small leak or water backup can cause catastrophic damage. These issues may bring water into your home for days or weeks if left unattended. Keep water woes from ruining your vacation, and eliminate them by turning the main water supply off before departing. This simple but important step will minimize the risk of water damage and make for a more peaceful vacation.
2. Where's the Main Water Supply Valve?
Finding the supply valve may be difficult if you're shutting off the home's water supply for the first time. This is crucial information, as it may be necessary to turn off the water quickly during a crisis.
Turning off the main water supply is a logical first step if there's a burst pipe or a significant leak. Finding the shutoff valve is easier when you look around the home's perimeter. These valves are typically placed about one meter below ground level; if it's in the basement, the valve will be at eye level or even lower.
Water supply lines take the shortest route from the outside meter to the home, and the shutoff valve will be where the line and the home's exterior meet. Home inspection reports are another tip-off as to where these valves are located.
3. My Water is Cloudy. How Can I Clear It Up?
Have you ever turned on the tap to fill a glass only to notice that the water looks milky? If the home's water is cloudy, it's likely because of the following:
The team at New West Plumbing can help the area's homeowners with their water source, water heater, and filtration issues. Call today to schedule an appointment.
4. Why is Moisture Coming Out of the Ceiling Around the Light Fixtures?
It's an unnerving sight. You're enjoying a meal when the light fixture above fills with water. Why is it happening? Often, floors and walls conceal minor leaks, making them virtually undetectable. The first visible sign may come when the moisture finally finds its way into a light fixture. When this occurs, there's a leak nearby. It happens more often than you'd think and it can be fixed with the following steps.
After taking these steps, call the pros at New West Plumbing. Our Burnaby plumbers will find the leak and make the necessary repairs. It's also a good idea to consult an electrician who can determine if they should replace the fixture.
5. My Spigots Are "Frost Free." Should I Still Disconnect My Hoses During the Winter?
Winters in British Columbia can get bitterly cold, so Burnaby’s homeowners need to do what they can to prevent burst pipes. Many homes are equipped with "frost-free" fixtures, which leads some residents to assume there's nothing left to do. However, that's not true.
When garden hoses are used, water becomes trapped in the line leading to the spigot and stays once the hose is turned off. The water will freeze on a cold winter night, and the pipes may crack. With frost-free spigots, cracking will still occur, but the problem may be less noticeable, and water may get into your home before you know it.
Disrupt all garden hoses before cold weather sets in to reduce the risk of ruptured pipes and hidden leaks. For additional protection, use the shutoff valve located inside the home. If your home needs to be equipped with shutoff valves for outside faucets, one of our technicians can install them.
6. Why Is This Month's Water Bill High?
Burnaby homeowners, like many others, budget for their monthly utilities. However, an unusually high water bill can ruin those plans. It may be due to multiple factors if you've noticed a steep increase in your monthly water bill—or if you've always paid a lot for water. Some of these are major plumbing issues, and others are minor problems that are easily resolved. These issues may include the following:
While you can easily address some of these causes with DIY methods, others are more complicated. If you're dealing with a burst pipe or outdated fixtures, the team at New West Plumbing can help. Call today to request additional information.
7. Why Are My Home's Pipes So Noisy?
Does laundry day leave you with a headache? Your pipes may be to blame! Today's appliances often work so fast and efficiently that they may cause a home's pipes to move with every change in water pressure. If those pipes aren't properly fastened, they might move so much that they make banging noises. While a bit of noise isn't harmful, excessive banging can cause the pipes to wear out prematurely. Not only that, it's a real bother to hear!
To prevent pipe noise, take one or more of these steps:
No matter the cause, noisy pipes are a genuine inconvenience. Call New West Plumbing today to learn about our pipe noise solutions.
8. Why Is My Toilet Always Running?
This is a common question among New West Plumbing customers, and the answer is simple. Toilets typically run nonstop because the flap at the bottom of the tank won't seal shut. To check for this issue, remove the top from the tank and flush while observing the flap.
Does it close? If it doesn't, some water flowing into the tank comes through the flap. Therefore, the water will keep running because the float never reaches the point it stops the water flow. That's why jiggling the flush handle works. The handle is attached to the flap by a chain, and shaking it repositions the flap for a more secure seal.
9. Why Do We Run Out of Hot Water So Quickly?
There are a few reasons for the lack of hot water, depending on the unit's condition, age, and type.
When there needs to be more hot water to go around, frustration may build quickly. Save time and aggravation by calling New West Plumbing for fast, friendly, and efficient water heater repair and maintenance services.
10. My Water Bill is High, and None of My Faucets are Leaking. What Else Could It Be?
If you're trying to determine why your water bill is so high, there are a few things to check. The first step is to check the home's toilets, ensuring they're free of leaks. The water level inside the tank should be about three centimeters below the overflow valve, and the flapper should create a tight seal after every flush.
11. Chemical Drain Cleaners: Are They Safe?
While they're widely available, there are better choices than chemical drain cleaners for Burnaby homes. These concoctions are typically very toxic, which makes them dangerous in homes with pets and small children. The caustic chemicals can also damage your home's pipes, causing them to deteriorate from the inside. When this occurs, the drain lines will eventually need to be replaced.
A few products on the market in Canada contain pipe-friendly enzymes and bacteria. These options work well to keep grease and sludge from clogging the insides of a home's pipes. For stubborn clogs, though, you can always count on our Burnaby plumbing pros.
12. What's Safe to Put Down the Garbage Disposal?
Garbage disposals are powerhouses that whisk food scraps and waste away, but their power has limits. They're far from indestructible, and it's your job to keep disposals running smoothly by not putting certain items in them.
While we hope your garbage disposal functions well for years, we're here to help when problems arise. Call today to schedule disposal repair or replacement.
13. Why Is My Water Heater Rumbling?
The most common causes of water heater noise are sediment and steam in the tank. You can often address steam-related issues by turning down the thermostat. If you think the thermostat has failed, turn it down to its lowest setting. If it doesn't shut off, replace it.
To eliminate sediment in a water heater tank, open the drain valve at the bottom and let the water flow out until it's clear. Removing the sediment and checking for steam issues should reduce noise problems and allow your water heater to operate smoothly.
The Importance of Hiring a Professional Plumber for Your Burnaby Home
Is your home's plumbing past its prime? If you've recently noticed water heater issues, slow drains, or a dripping faucet, it's important to address the problem correctly and promptly. While do-it-yourself repairs may sometimes work, they're, at best, a temporary fix. Below, we'll list why hiring New West Plumbing is the right decision.
Whether you need scheduled plumbing maintenance or major pipe repairs, we offer unparalleled customer service. Learn more about our services online or call today to schedule an appointment with a Burnaby plumber.
Do You Have Plumbing Questions? New West Has the Answers!
Residential plumbing may seem simple, but a lot is happening behind your home's walls and under its floors. A small issue can quickly become a big and expensive problem, so it's best to address it before it gets out of hand.
Do you have any questions or concerns or need to request assistance with a plumbing project? Our team is here to help. Don't hesitate to get in touch with our Burnaby plumbers. Our experienced plumbers in Burnaby can help you with anything from a slow-draining shower to a stopped-up toilet.
Don't stress over when to call for plumbing help, as we're ready to help with issues of all types and complexities. Contact us to request additional information for routine or emergency service. We look forward to helping you with all your residential plumbing maintenance and repair needs.