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Why Are My Pipes Leaking?

Sunday, September 16th, 2018

Famous historical writer John Bunyan once said, “one leak will sink a ship.” While Mr. Bunyan wasn’t speaking literally, the logic still stands: a small problem often becomes a large problem if it’s left alone. Even If he was speaking literally, in fact, he’d still be right. Even something small like a leaking pipe can lead to water bills, foundational damage, and more.

Inversely, that means stopping big problems from happening can be as fixing small ones. By finding and repairing your leaking pipes, you can prevent bigger problems before they happen. These are the four most common reasons why pipes leak. Once you know why your pipes are leaking, you’ll know how you have to fix them.

Corrosion

Pipes corrode for several reasons. Hard, mineral-rich water scrapes away at the inside of pipes harder than softer water. The acidic chemicals in chemical drain cleaners eat away at your pipes over time. When pipes are improperly fitted together, metals with opposing charges can wear each other down.

The longer you let your pipes corrode, the worse the problem gets. There’s no reliable way to fix corroded pipes. If your pipes corrode, you should replace them right away. After you’ve replaced your pipes, look into the reason why your previous pipes corroded. A pro can help you determine the cause of the corrosion and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

High water pressure

If your water pressure is too high, it can cause pipe ruptures, water waste, and (you guessed it) leaks. Most pipes have a recommended pressure maximum of 80 psi. If your water supplier pushes out water harder than 80 psi, you could have a pressure problem.

If you suspect you have a water pressure problem in your home, call the experts at The Pink Plumber right away. We’ll be able to diagnose your problem, find the cause, and fix it for you.

Movement of surrounding infrastructure

Houses have a mind of their own. Foundations settle, walls shift, and things move over time. All those movements, no matter how small, can affect the things in the home–including the pipes.

As the house moves, it could force pipes to move, jostle around, or separate. Depending on how significant the pipe separation, your pipes could start leaking or even rupture. If you think your pipes have moved, you should call in a pro to re-adjust them.

Clogs

Lots of things create clogs in your pipes. Grease and hair build up inside pipes over time. Small objects often get lodged inside pipes after someone accidentally flushes them down a drain. Corrosion on the inside of pipes restricts water movement over time and lead to clogs.

No matter how they happen, clogs are one of the most common causes for leaking pipes. They cause back-ups, which drive up the pressure in your pipes and lead to leaks. When it comes to fixing clogs, our first tip is to avoid using chemical drain cleaners. They might clear the clog, but they’ll also eat away at the underlying pipe. Instead, call in drain cleaning professionals. We can open up the pipes, remove clogs, and get everything back in working order.


Don’t leave a small leak untreated until it becomes a big problem. Call up The Pink Plumber as soon as you notice a home leak. We’ll send someone by as soon as possible to find it, diagnose it, and fix it.

5 Ways to Prevent Mold Growth in Your Bathroom

Monday, May 14th, 2018

Mold serves a vital purpose in the ecosystem, but it has no place in a confined space like your bathroom. Prevent mold growth in your bathroom with these five easy tips from The Pink Plumber.

Exhaust Fans

Installing a high-quality exhaust fan is an easy way to reduce the amount of moisture in your bathroom. Exhaust fans pull moisture out of the room and force it outside through an exhaust vent. Most homes and apartments come with exhaust fans, but they’re usually a base model with very little power.

Exhaust fans are rated by the amount of air they’re able to move per minute. This volumetric measurement is called CFM, or cubic feet per minute. To calculate the right fan for your bathroom, first, calculate the total volume of your bathroom. Divide the volume by 7.5 to get the CFM you need. Use this measurement to buy a fan that will quickly and effectively move air out of the bathroom. Once you install your fan, remember to turn it on before you step into the shower and let it run for at least 30 minutes after you’re done to ensure that all the moisture is gone.

Regular Cleaning

In addition to cleaning your exhaust fan, cleaning your bathroom on a regular basis will also help combat mold. Bleach-based cleaning fluids are best, but for those who don’t like the overpowering smell, white vinegar is a natural disinfectant that’s also good for cleaning tile and bathroom surfaces. A squeegee is another good investment for your bathroom cleaning arsenal, and you can find them cheap at your local dollar or automotive store. After you shower, use the squeegee to remove excess water from the walls. This technique will help prevent mold growth on your walls as well as reduce the appearance of water spots and soap scum.

Air Filtration

Bathroom 2

A high-quality air filter in your HVAC system can also help prevent mold from growing and spreading throughout your house. You AC filters are located inside the return vent. Filters trap dust, dander, and other airborne allergens, including mold. Make sure your air filters are HEPA filters that are rated for mold and mildew and set a reminder for yourself to change them every three months.

Mold-Proof Decor

Another way to prevent mold growth in your bathroom is to use mold-proof decor. Other than a bath mat and towels, there shouldn’t be any fabric decorations in the bathroom. Moisture clings to fabric and, over time, will develop mold. Decorate your bathroom with stainless steel fixtures, rubber duckies, and plastic soap dishes that are impervious to mold.

Plumbing Leaks

The number one source of mold in the bathroom is leaky plumbing. If you have a traditional cabinet under your sink, clean it out once a month and inspect the interior for water damage. If you notice water stains or black, fuzzy spots inside your cabinet, call your local plumber as soon as possible. Once manifested, mold is hazardous to your respiratory health. By inspecting your plumbing and faucets on a regular basis, you can quickly stop leaks, save money on water loss, and prevent mold from infesting your bathroom.

How Plumbing Leaks Can Cause Pest Infestations

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018

Leaking faucets and clogged pipes are troublesome enough without the threat of a cockroach invasion. To survive, pests will squeeze their way into your home through the tiniest cracks and holes. Keep reading to learn more about these pesky invaders and how to protect your home from them.

Plumbing Leaks and Pest Problems

Just like humans, bugs and rodents need water to survive. Hot summers and dry winters drive pest indoors where they know they can find moisture under your kitchen sink or in your bathroom. Basements and crawl spaces are prime real estate for bugs and rodents.

Cockroaches, crickets, and rats love the warmth generated by your water heater as well as the moist conditions in your laundry room. Carpenter ants and termites are more likely to seek out damp wood in your attic or basement because the moisture makes it easier for them to chew through the wood. Pests like these can compromise the structural integrity of your home and roof if left unchecked, while rats and cockroaches carry diseases that can make you and your family sick. However, there are several things you can do to block their access and make your home less appealing to pests and rodents.

Outdoor Home Maintenance

Plumbing 2

Maintaining low moisture levels outside your home is just as important as reducing indoor moisture levels. When it comes to this daunting task, take the top-down approach. First, inspect your roof and gutters. Remove dead leaves from the corners of the roof to prevent leaks and the formation of mold. It’s not uncommon for birds and other woodland creatures to make their nests inside your gutters and downspouts. Carefully remove nests or call animal control to relocate them to a more suitable habitat.

Downspouts should be directed away from the foundation and flowerbeds to reduce puddles and excess moisture. In the warmer months, this will also help reduce mosquito populations around your home, as they like to lay their eggs in stagnant water. Monitor your gutters for leaks and replace any sections with holes or cracks.

If you have a chimney, have it inspected at least once a year for leaks. The flashing around your chimney is prone to leaking as well; replace it as needed to prevent roof leaks. Change out the mulch in your flowerbeds once a year, preferably in the spring. Consider replacing it with recycled rubber mulch that is impervious to mold and drains better than wood mulch.

Indoor Plumbing Maintenance

To prevent insects and rodents from taking over your home, first, locate and repair the source of the excess moisture in your home. The leaky garbage disposal under the kitchen sink is a prime target for cockroaches as well as dripping faucets; repair or replace them as soon as possible.

Inspect your attic for leaks on a regular basis but especially after a hailstorm or hurricane. Identify and repair leaky pipes in your basement or crawlspace as quickly as possible to reduce moisture levels and save money on water loss. Call in a professional plumber to inspect major appliances like your dishwasher for leaks and to replace old fittings and hardware.

If I am Seeing Bugs, Could I Have a Bathroom Leak?

Wednesday, December 20th, 2017

What do insect infestations have to do with a plumbing leak? In some cases, quite a lot. Plumbing leaks and bug infestation are close cousins. Both can cause extensive damage to your home and potential health hazards to you and your family.

The Connection Between Bugs and Bad Plumbing

The reason that insects often appear when there’s a plumbing leak is simple: They are attracted to the water and will congregate wherever they can find it. While it’s a commonly told tale that insects will enter your house through drains, it’s much more likely that they’ll get in through a door, window or other opening. If you have a puddle of water somewhere, often as a result of a bathroom leak, it’s like an oasis for wayward insects.

You probably know that an unnoticed plumbing leak can cause damage to wood components in your home. But you may not know that once the structure of wood has been weakened from water damage, it’s an open invitation to wood-boring insects such as termites to move in and start munching.

Bugs Don’t Always Indicate a Plumbing Problem

Just because you see a bug in your bathroom doesn’t mean you have a bathroom leak or that you should panic. However, if you notice insects gathering somewhere in your kitchen, bathroom or another area where plumbing pipes or fixtures are present, you may want to investigate further.

Areas where insect infestations related to plumbing leaks may occur include:

So You Found a Leak

If you do find a plumbing leak anywhere in your home or property, clean up any water right away to deter insects and prevent further damage to your home. Next, call a trusted plumber to diagnose and address the problem before it becomes a much bigger one. Another note about dealing with plumbing leaks of any size: don’t try to fix it yourself. DIY can be a good route to take for small house repairs that don’t involve critical systems, but your home’s plumbing affects the overall usability of your home.

For answers to your questions about bathroom leaks, bugs and other plumbing-related concerns, contact The Pink Plumber today.

Plumbing Preparation for the Summer Months

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

Most home plumbing systems withstand a heavy workload during the summer months due to more showers, extra laundry and a barbecue or two. All of this water usage can tax the system, especially if you add summer house guests into the mix. Summer plumbing preparation can alleviate this burden with routine maintenance and inspection. This article will show you how a little preparation can prevent the inconvenience associated with unexpected plumbing repairs.

Service the Septic Tank

If you have a home that relies on a private septic tank system, summer plumbing preparation is even more important. The septic tank system is responsible for treating all of the household waste and sewage. If it fails, you may face the difficult prospect of expensive repairs, some of which can turn into thousands of dollars. Annual septic tank maintenance and cleaning is one of the most crucial aspects of maintaining your home’s plumbing system.

Inspect Plumbing

Temperature swings between winter and summer months can wreak havoc on your plumbing system. Fluctuations in temperatures cause your plumbing pipes to contract and expand. This can lead to cracked pipes or minor leaks within the system. A plumbing inspection will identify problems so they can be addressed before causing any major damage.

Service the Water Heater

Don’t forget your water heater during summer plumbing preparation. The water heater should be thoroughly inspected by a licensed plumbing contractor. A typical service call includes flushing the system, adjusting the thermostat, testing the T&P valve and making sure the appliance is operating at peak performance.

Inspect Household Plumbing Fixtures

Check both indoor and outdoor plumbing fixtures for leaks. These include faucets, toilets, bathtubs, sink drains and appliances such as dishwashers, garbage disposals and pool pumps. Ignoring even the smallest of leaks can cost you money in home repairs and other damages. Water damage ruins cabinetry, woodwork, drywall flooring and invites the growth of mold and mildew, a known health hazard. Should the latter occur, you can expect a hefty bill to rid your home of this toxic substance.

Have Your Gutters Cleaned

Remember to have your gutters cleaned. Many people don’t realize that a home’s gutter system is considered part of the plumbing. A gutter system plays a substantial role in protecting your home from water damage. Gutters are designed to channel rainwater away from your home’s foundation. After a long winter, leaves, dirt, roof material and other debris can accumulate inside of the gutter system. When this happens, water is no longer able to flow freely through the system and away from your home. The gutters can also hold water or overflow which can damage roofing, roof structure and facial boards, leading to unnecessary repairs.

For answers to your plumbing questions, contact The Pink Plumber today.

5 Spots to Check for Plumbing Leaks

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

While it might not always be at the top of your to-do list, checking your home for plumbing leaks on a regular basis can help prevent major problems down the road. And fixing those little leaks can save you big bucks on your water bill.

The numbers related to water lost due to plumbing leaks is staggering. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says an average household can waste more than 10,000 gallons of water a year just from leaks. That’s enough for 270 loads of laundry. If you fix your leaks, you’ll save, on average, 10 percent on your water bill.

It is important that you always examine your water bill. If a family of four is using more than 12,000 gallons a month, there is most likely a leak somewhere. What’s more, about 10 percent of all homes in the United States have leaks that waste more than 90 gallons of water a day. Many plumbing leaks are easy to fix yourself. You’ll just need a couple tools you probably already have around the house.

The best time to check for leaks is during the winter months.

The places that are the most likely culprits for plumbing leaks include:

  • The faucet. It might not seem like much, but if a drop of water is leaking from your faucet each second, you’ll end up with 3,000 gallons of water in a year’s time. To fix a faucet leak, check the washers and gaskets. If they’re worn, replace them. If you’re replacing your faucet, replace it with one with the WaterSense Label.
  • Shower heads. If your shower head is leaking, it can probably be fixed by tightening with a wrench and using pipe tape. Ten drips in a minute adds up to 500 gallons a year — the amount of water used to clean 60 loads of dishes in the dishwasher.
  • Toilets. An easy way to check for toilet leaks is by placing a drop of food coloring into the tank. If the color appears in the bowl within 15 minutes without flushing, then you know you have a leak. If you discover a leak, there’s a good chance it’s a worn out rubber flapper valve. They tend to wear out over time and are a simple, inexpensive fix.
  • Irrigation system. Once you’re safely out of the frigid winter season, check your irrigation system for any damage arising from frost or freezing. Also, look for broken sprinkler heads, weak pressure, wet or soggy areas of your lawn, and increasing water bills in summer. These are all signs of a possible leak in your irrigation system.
  • Hoses. Is there a leak or spray of water when you connect your outdoor garden hose to the spigot? If so, replace the washer and use pipe tape and a wrench to seal and tighten the connection.

For answers to your questions about plumbing leaks or any other plumbing issue, contact the Pink Plumber today.

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