Plumbing problems can be extremely expensive. In fact, these types of problems happen more often than you would think. Do you have plumbing issues at your properties regularly? Consider handling some of the maintenance and repair tasks yourself. Alternatively, hire a handyman to tackle the problem, and save yourself the cost of a professional plumber. Just make sure your tenant doesn’t attempt the repairs.
Below are the five most common plumbing issues. We’ve also included some simple solutions that don’t require help from a plumber.
Toilet clogs occur all the time. Usually, this is because foreign objects get flushed that shouldn’t. Generally, this isn’t a serious issue because most clogs don’t require the service of a plumber. So, you have two potential solutions.
First, use a plunger. Secondly, use an auger or toilet snake. Always start with a plunger to try and free up the blockage. Apply serious pressure and use quick up and down motions. You’ll create the suction needed to move the blockage. After plunging for a few cycles with a good hard pull at the end you should free up the blockage. If a plunger won’t do the job, a toilet auger can clear the way. Insert the auger down through the drain slowly. Then begin turning the hose with the attached handle to create a spiraling motion. This will move the auger and clear the way.
If neither the plunger nor the auger is enough to clear the blockage, call in a professional. In some extreme cases, a toilet may need to be uninstalled so that the pipe can be cleaned out. Generally, though, it’s possible to clean out the pipes without resorting to such drastic measures.
A running toilet isn’t just a nuisance. It’s also a serious waste as well. A toilet running day and night wastes as much as 200 gallons of water daily. That’s a major expense!
Fortunately, you don’t need to hire a plumber to resolve this issue. The most common reasons that a toilet constantly runs is a flap that isn’t sealing properly within the tank or an improperly adjusted float. By opening up the toilet tank and observing the inner mechanisms you can pick out whether the flap is sealing or not.
If it is not dropping down, clear any debris that may be in the way, adjust any rods out of the way of the drain and also adjust the flap chain to make sure it is sitting down properly. The problem could also be from a float that’s adjusted too high. This would allow the water to run down through the flush valve tube. Use the float adjustment screw to lower its height down until your toilet’s water level does not go above the valve tube any longer to prevent a leaky toilet.
Eventually, clogged drains are an issue that everyone will face. All plumbing fixtures, including sinks, showers, and bathtubs rely on drains to release the water. If one of these becomes clogged the fixture is useless. However, a clogged drain isn’t a serious issue and often doesn’t require the services of a plumber. If you are dealing with a clogged drain in one of your properties, you should be able to clear it out using one of two measures in just a few minutes.
The first and simplest measure is to clear out the P-trap underneath the fixture. Most plumbing today includes a bent piece of piping that’s designed to catch solid debris. This trap can be disconnected, cleared out and then put back into position once again. Disconnect this portion of your plumbing with a bucket or pan in place to capture any water that will leak out. Now clear the section of debris. If it is full of something like grease or hair, this is likely the cause of the blockage. Re-install the P-trap and test to see that the water drains freely. If the pipe is still clogged, the blockage is likely farther down.
To clear this you will need a drain auger or drain snake. Insert the end of the drain snake into your pipe and run it down through the line spinning the handle whenever you reach a bent section of pipe that stops the auger line from descending. Work many feet of the auger line through your drain and it should eventually push through the blockage and open up space for you. Now remove the auger while wiping away any debris that’s on the line as you pull it out. Test the drain for a blockage once finished. The water should drain easily. If not you can try to send the auger down further. If that still doesn’t work, you will need to call a plumber and have them to the property to find out what the issue is.
Leaky supply lines to toilets are prone to leaking and can cause real damage to the floors of your properties if left untreated. These lines have seals inside them that can go bad over time. It’s also possible for the lines themselves to wear out or to get punctured over time. Check the supply line at the toilet tank, and where the line connects to the shutoff valve at the wall in your bathroom. Try tightening the nut down at the valve for a better seal, and tighten the line to the toilet tank more firmly.
If this doesn’t work, you may have to replace the supply line to get one that’s functioning properly. It’s also possible that the supply line shutoff is the location of the leak. In this case, you should tighten the shutoff nut to try and seal up the valve. If you can’t stop the leak by replacing the supply line and adjusting the shutoff nut, you will have to consult a plumber to resolve this problem.
Dripping faucets can be expensive problems in areas where you pay for water. If your property has a leaky faucet, the problem can cost a fortune in wasted water over time. Fortunately, it’s possible to fix this issue without a plumber. In compression faucets, you simply have to replace the seat washers within the faucet itself. With ball-type faucets, you will need to install a full replacement kit to resolve the leaking issue efficiently. For a cartridge faucet, you must replace two O-rings surrounding the cartridge or the cartridge itself to resolve a leak. When it comes to a cylinder faucet, you must clean the neoprene seals and scrub the cylinder openings to resolve leaks.
If troubleshooting the leaky faucet is proving difficult, you can replace the whole unit directly, or you can hire a plumber to come in and make the repairs for you.
Plumbing issues are common in most properties, but regular maintenance can help reduce those issues. At Blueground we take care to maintain our properties regularly, which helps reduce the plumbing issues that we’re left dealing with. Blueground tenants also enjoy the convenience of ordering a plumber through the mobile application after which we’ll take care of dispatching a technician.