For many homes, a working plumbing system is a must. However, it’s only natural that time and use can lead to plumbing issues that need resolving. Here are some of the most frequent.

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Rust

While newer pipes have a higher tolerance to rust, older pipes (typically made of steel) aren’t so resilient. If your tap water begins tasting funny or has a reddish-orange hue when it flows out the faucet, it may be due to excess rust buildup. Sometimes turning on faucets throughout the house can be enough to flush out excess rust residue, but if that doesn’t help, it may be time to get your pipes replaced by a professional.

Strange Smells

Often, heavy rainfall can overtax sewer pipes, leading to leakage. Sometimes, this can be indicated by a strange smell coming from somewhere around your home. A plumber can test for leaks with a sewer smoke test by inserting smoke into a manhole. If the smoke flows freely out the manhole and through a house’s ventilation pipes, then the pipes are fine. However, should smoke not emerge in a certain area, then it is likely due to either pipe damage or blockage.

Drain Blockages

While some may do their best to make sure nothing other than liquid goes down the sink (e.g. covering the drain with paper towels while shaving), a blocked drain is still a real possibility. For clogs that don’t seem too serious, a liquid drain cleaner is one’s best bet, provided they read the instructions carefully. Alternately, filling the sink with baking soda and vinegar for a few minutes, then washing them down with boiling water is a popular (an often effective) home remedy.

Leaking Faucets and Shower Heads

Generally, these leaks are caused by something internal, e.g. blockage or damaged parts. Do not attempt to fix yourself unless you’re absolutely certain of your abilities.

Plumbing problems can be costly to fix, but may prove even more expensive for your water bill if not taken care of. Be alert, and fix problems as soon as they arise.

Common Plumbing Issues