Plumbing 101 Essentials Homeowners Need to Know

Plumbing Basics Households Should Know

If homeowners don’t know some basic information about their plumbing systems, then they can put themselves and their properties at risk. To avoid these issues, they need to learn essential plumbing tips to understand what signs to watch for that can signal plumbing issues, where they can save money, and why scheduling routine maintenance is necessary. In honor of the back-to-school season, keep reading to learn these plumbing basics. 

Plumbing Fixtures Can Help Save on Water Bills

tubThere are many components to a plumbing system, but the parts household members interact with the most are typically the plumbing fixtures. Family members use faucets, shower heads, bathtubs, sinks, and water heaters daily. However, homeowners should know that replacing old fixtures with water-efficient ones can help them save significantly on water costs. 

Some examples of water-saving fixtures that can help conserve water and save on water bills are:

  • Dual-flush toilets: These water-saving toilets can reduce water bills because they use less water when flushed and have two flushing options, one that uses less than the other.
  • Low-flow showerheads: These water-saving showerheads provide adequate water pressure while using less water. 
  • Water-saving faucets: These water-efficient faucets typically use aerators, which use air to reduce water use from the tap while keeping good water pressure.

Signs of Plumbing Issues

billSome of the most crucial information for homeowners to know about their plumbing system is how to identify the signs of an issue. The faster a plumbing problem is spotted, the quicker it can be repaired, and the less damage can occur. When any strange occurrences happen with the plumbing, a plumber should be called immediately to determine the cause and fix it. 

Some common signs of plumbing problems that homeowners should watch for are:

  • Low water pressure: This can indicate several plumbing problems like faulty plumbing fixtures, clogs, and leaks. 
  • Odd sounds: Strange or unusual noises coming from the piping or plumbing fixtures need to be inspected so plumbers can determine the cause. It may indicate issues like the water heater needs service, a leak, or a water hammer.
  • Strange smells: Foul odors from drains or pipes can indicate clogs, leaks, or other problems with the sewer line.
  • Slow drains: If there are slow-draining sinks, bathtubs, or showers in a house, it can indicate a blockage. 
  • High water bills: Unusually high water costs without explanation likely indicates a leak somewhere in the plumbing system. 

The Importance of Plumbing Maintenance

Homeowners need to schedule regular plumbing maintenance to keep their systems working correctly and spot any issues early so they can be repaired or replaced quickly. Maintaining the plumbing helps it last longer, prevents problems, and can help save money. 

Some of the tasks plumbers may do during these maintenance services are:

  • Examine the pipes for issues like leaks or corrosion
  • Search the house for signs of water damage
  • Look for signs of mold or mildew throughout the property, indicating a long-term leak
  • Inspect the faucets, shower heads, bathtubs, and sinks for malfunctioning parts
  • Perform drain cleaning services to remove blockages or clogs
  • Maintain the water heater to ensure it’s operating correctly, including flushing the tank to improve efficiency and checking the anode rod to see if it needs replacing.

Scheduling routine maintenance on a plumbing system can allow plumbers to proactively repair issues they notice during an inspection and help prevent emergency repairs later. 

About Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain

Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain is a locally owned and family-operated company that has been serving Lakeway and the surrounding areas since 2008. They offer quality service, the latest technology, and solid communication. Call them today for plumbing services in Lakeway, TX.

Signs It May Be TIme to Schedule Repiping Services

Symptoms That Indicate You May Need Repiping

When a homeowner considers whether or not they need their home repiped, there are several factors they need to consider.

Have they experienced frequent leaks in their home?

Is their water pressure lower than usual?

Is their water discolored?

Are their pipes made of outdated materials?

Are they constantly scheduling plumbing repairs? 

If property owners answer yes to these questions, it can be time to have a plumber inspect their pipes and determine if repiping the house is necessary. Learn more about common signs that it may be time to consider repiping, including frequent leaks and repairs, low water pressure, and discolored water.

Frequent Leaks and Pipe Repairs

When deciding if home repiping is necessary, plumbers often ask homeowners how often they experience leaks. Plumbers may recommend repiping if there have been frequent leaks or multiple leaks throughout the home. Multiple leaks in a plumbing system can indicate a larger issue than just one random leak or faulty pipe. It can signal the pipes are deteriorating and whole house repiping is needed.

If there have been frequent leaks or repairs, it can demonstrate a significant problem with the piping, such as old age or corrosion, so it may be more cost-effective to replace the piping completely with repiping services rather than continue to pay for ongoing repairs. The frequent leaks and repairs will stop when the old and decaying pipes are replaced with strong new ones. 

Poor Water Pressure

showerWhen a home’s water pressure is lower than it should be, it can signal a problem with the plumbing. Various issues can cause this, and plumbers will need to complete an inspection to figure it out. Some issues they will check for include the following:

  • Corrosion and age of pipes: Plumbers will look at the pipes to see if the low water pressure is caused by the corrosion and decay of the pipe, which can cause a buildup that causes low water pressure. If this is the cause of the water pressure issues, it can indicate the piping needs to be replaced.
  • Leaks in the pipes: Plumbers will also look for leaking pipes, which can cause low water pressure. If there is a leak causing reduced water pressure, it can be repaired, but if the leak is caused by pipes that are too old or corroded, repiping will be needed. 
  • Clogs in the pipes: Reduced water pressure can also be caused by blockages in the pipes. If there is a clog, a plumber will determine if it can be removed or if the pipes need to be replaced. 

The Color or Smell of the Water Has Changed

sinkIf a homeowner starts to see their water has a cloudy, orange, or brown tint or if there is an odd odor coming from it, it can indicate a problem in the pipes. Discolored water can be a sign that there is pipe corrosion and rust getting into the water. Smelly water can also indicate there are contaminants or bacteria in the water. 

If these issues occur, homeowners should call a plumber immediately to determine the cause of the discoloration and smell. Depending on the cause, plumbers may recommend repiping services to replace the decaying pipes with new ones that will restore the home’s usual look and smell of water. 

About Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain

Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain has over a decade of experience serving Lakeway, TX, and the surrounding communities. They provide solid communication, prompt and professional service, and the latest technology. Call them today for repiping services in Lakeway, TX

3 Ways to Help Prevent Plumbing Disasters This Summer

Avoid Plumbing Problems This Summer

When people make plans for the summer, they may include plans to vacation, host parties, and other fun activities. Scheduling plumbing repairs isn’t on the list. However, as the summer months approach, it’s essential to consider the plumbing system, look out for issues, and take steps to prevent plumbing problems. This post will share three tips to prevent unfortunate plumbing disasters this summer.

Watch for Leaks

leakA water leak can spike the water bills and quickly cause water damage to a home. To limit the damage and avoid expensive repairs, watching for signs of a leak and acting quickly is essential. 

Some symptoms that can indicate there are plumbing leaks at home include:

  • Water Stains or Discoloration: Check for water stains or discoloration on walls, ceilings, floors, or near plumbing fixtures, pipes, or appliances. These stains may appear yellowish, brownish, or have a ring-like pattern.
  • Damp or Musty Odors: Pay attention to persistent musty or damp odors, even after cleaning or airing out a home. This can indicate mold or mildew from a hidden plumbing leak. 
  • Increase in Water Bills: Watch for increases in the water bill. If it keeps increasing without a change in water usage, it can indicate a leak. 
  • Running Water: Listen for the sounds of running water when no fixtures or appliances are being used. This can also be a symptom of a hidden leak. 
  • Low Water Pressure: Check the water pressure throughout the house to see if it’s lower in faucets, showerheads, and other fixtures. If so, there may be a leak or other issue in the water line.
  • Running Water Meter: Turn off all the water-using fixtures and watch the water meter. If it keeps running when no water is used, or the leak indicator shows there is a leak, then there is a leak that’s still using water. 
  • Puddles or Pooling Water: Look for standing water, puddles, or pooling water in areas where it shouldn’t be, such as under sinks, around toilets, near appliances, or even in the yard. 

Paying attention to these symptoms is essential so homeowners can schedule professional repairs as soon as possible. Catching these leaks early can prevent higher water bills, as they won’t be wasting water due to the leak, and can prevent significant water damage from occurring. 

No Grease or Cooking Oil Down a Drain

greaseAn easy way for homeowners to prevent plumbing problems this summer is to avoid pouring grease or cooking oil down the drain. Avoiding this while cooking – or when disposing of grease while grilling – can save a lot of time and money, not to mention headaches. Pouring grease and cooking oil down the drain can lead to many issues, including blockages in drains and clogged sewer lines. Grease can coat the pipes, restricting water flow and catching additional debris, forming tough clogs. 

It’s essential to dispose of grease properly to avoid clogs and the problems clogs can cause, such as leaks, backups, slow draining, and burst pipes. People should let it solidify in a designated container and then dispose of it in the garbage when completely cooled. 

Maintenance and Drain Cleaning

Another important way to prevent plumbing issues is to have a plumber perform regular plumbing maintenance and drain cleaning services. These services can have many advantages for the home. For one, it can prevent clogs and blockages from forming. Debris, like hair, soap scum, and food scraps, can accumulate inside a home’s drains and pipes over time, leading to clogs. Performing regular drain cleaning services can remove this buildup and prevent clogs from forming. It will also eliminate any foul odors coming from the drains. 

Maintaining the plumbing system is an integral part of home care. Regular inspections and preventive maintenance can detect potential issues and prevent costly repairs down the road. These maintenance services can also improve the lifespan of a home’s plumbing and can prevent plumbing emergencies from occurring. 

About Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain

Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain is a locally owned plumbing company serving Lakeway, TX, and the surrounding areas since 2008. They provide quality services, solid communication, and the latest technology. Call them today for plumbing maintenance and drain cleaning services in Lakeway, TX.

New Growth in the Spring Can Wreak Havoc on the Plumbing

Is Your Growing Garden Hurting Your Plumbing?

Is the yard starting to bloom as spring weather arrives? The colors from growing flowers and trees can be beautiful, but some not-so-pretty things can happen to the underground plumbing system. As trees grow and strengthen in the spring, their roots grow underground, occasionally finding their way into sewer and water lines. April showers may bring May flowers, but new plant growth can cause underground plumbing issues. Keep reading to learn what problems trees in the yard can cause to the plumbing system.

Intruding Tree Roots 

tree rootsSeeing trees grow big and strong in the yard can be reassuring for the landscaping, but it can signal to have the plumbing system checked. Tree roots can be problematic when they intrude on underground plumbing systems. As the trees grow in the spring and their root systems expand, they search for water and nutrients in the soil. 

Unfortunately, this could lead them directly to the home’s underground piping. Once tree roots get inside pipes, they can cause damage by blocking and clogging or breaking and cracking the lines, resulting in costly repairs. It’s essential to take steps to protect the plumbing system from root intrusion to avoid this issue and the effects it can cause.

Problems From Intruding Tree Roots 

rootsTree roots that invade pipes can cause several issues. When the roots penetrate the sewer line, they can block the flow of water or sewage, creating slow drainage and eventually leading to backups. In addition to slowing down the plumbing system, tree root intrusions can damage pipes by causing them to break or crack, leading to costly repairs or even replacement of the lines. 

Leaks can occur when tree roots pierce through a pipe or joint, allowing water to escape from the plumbing system. Poor water pressure from plumbing fixtures can also occur if the leak is in a water line. Furthermore, if tree roots enter sewer lines, they can also cause foul odors in the area around the affected pipes. Quickly dealing with intruding tree roots is vital for homeowners to ensure their plumbing system remains functional and that property damage does not occur.

Solutions and Prevention for Root Obstruction 

Plumbers can use hydro jetting to remove blockages from tree root intrusions. Hydro jetting is a drain cleaning technique that uses high-pressure water streams to clear clogs, including tree roots that have invaded pipes. After the blockage is removed, plumbers can repair any leaks or damage caused by the roots. Plumbers have many specialized tools to locate leaks or damage in the pipes, including acoustic leak detectors and video inspection equipment. This equipment will allow plumbers to locate and repair the pipe more effectively with minimal disruption to the surroundings.  

Homeowners can also take steps to prevent tree root intrusions from occurring. Installing root barriers around pipes and sewer lines can effectively keep roots away from pipes. They act as a physical barrier to keep the tree roots away from pipes. Additionally, homeowners should avoid planting trees near underground piping and look into which trees have roots that are less likely to damage pipes to reduce the risk of root intrusion. Scheduling routine drain cleaning services and plumbing inspections can also help catch issues from tree roots early before they further damage the plumbing system.

About Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain

Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain is a local plumbing company serving Lakeway, TX, and the surrounding areas since 2008. They provide solid communication, the latest technology, and prompt arrival. Call them today for water and sewer line repair services in Lakeway, TX

Make a Difference for Earth Day With These Eco-Friendly Plumbing Upgrades

Choose Eco-Friendly Appliances and Plumbing Fixtures and Save Big

Earth Day is coming up, making it a great opportunity to reflect on the environment and make positive changes that have a positive impact. Making the home’s plumbing more eco-friendly is a great way to conserve energy and water and save money on water and energy bills. This blog will share some options for making a home’s plumbing more eco-friendly and saving money this Earth Day.

Save Water

touchless faucetThere are many ways to save water. Tweaking daily habits like taking shorter showers or turning off the faucet when not in use are just some of the ways people can make a difference in water conservation immediately. But there are plumbing fixtures homeowners can use in their homes to make water conservation even easier.

Technological advancements in home appliances and fixtures make that possible. More modern and water-saving versions of old products now give homeowners the ability to save on water and its corresponding bill without reducing performance. Here are just some of the water-saving fixtures that homeowners can upgrade to in order to save water and lower their water bills:

  • Water-saving toilets: There are several types of water-saving toilets, including dual flush, pressure-assisted, and gravity-assist toilets. Toilets are the biggest source of water use inside homes, so upgrading to a toilet that uses less water is a great way to save.
  • Low-flow showerheads: Upgrading older showerheads to newer low-flow showerheads are a great way to save water every time it’s used. They use only two gallons of water or less per minute, leading to significant water savings over time.
  • Touchless faucets: By upgrading to touchless faucets, water will never get wasted again when it’s not in use, like when brushing teeth or scrubbing dishes. They have sensors that turn off the water when it’s not needed.

Reduce Energy Usage

energy efficient clothes washerModern home appliances aren’t limited to saving water. They can be energy efficient as well. Dishwashers, clothes washers, and water heaters have the ability to save water and energy without sacrificing performance. For example, Energy Star-certified washing machines use around 20 percent less energy and 30 percent less water than average ones, leading to significant savings on utility bills.

In fact, the average homeowner can reduce their overall water usage by at least 20 percent by installing water-efficient fixtures and appliances like the ones mentioned throughout this blog. Installing water-saving and energy-efficient plumbing fixtures and appliances is a great way to save money and conserve water and energy to help the environment, all without sacrificing comfort.

What About the Pipes?

Energy savings at home don’t have to be limited to the plumbing fixtures and appliances mentioned. It’s also entirely possible to improve energy efficiency by choosing the right kind of piping for the home. Several factors like material, diameter, and layout can all impact efficiency.

While existing piping would be difficult to replace, especially if there is no immediate need to do so, homeowners who are in a position to replace their piping system, like those in need of repiping, can add to their savings by choosing the right pipe materials, diameters, and piping layout that will optimize water flow, reduce heat loss, and save energy.

About Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain

Neighborhood Plumbing & Drain is a local plumbing company serving Lakeway, TX, and the surrounding areas since 2008. They provide the latest technology, solid communication, and a satisfaction guarantee. Call them today for plumbing services in Lakeway, TX.