In this age of DIY culture, a little research can help you to fix just about anything. And when something simple comes along– like a leaky faucet or a clogged toilet, a YouTube tutorial is a great help. But, what if you have a plumbing problem that is not so easy to fix? What if you don’t know what is wrong or find that the work needed is above your pay grade? Here are some tips to help you know when it is time to bring in a plumber.
Is Your Water Pressure Low?
Low water pressure can be attributed to any one of a number of possible problems. It can be caused by an obstruction in the pipe, a poorly designed supply line or even low pressure from the city supply. It could even signify that there is a hole in your plumbing somewhere that needs to be fixed. Whatever is causing the problem, it is definitely not a problem for a novice. This is when you need to call in a professional.
Usually this little problem can be cured with a good plunging. If your plunger does not remove your difficulties, however, then the problem may be more involved than you thought. A plumber can assess the problem and enact a more effective solution. But, he can not do that unless you give him a call.
What to Do If You Are Not Getting Hot Water
Not having hot water is an inconvenience. Your water heater could be prevented from providing you with hot water for several reasons. It could be anything from a blown-out pilot light on a gas heater to a burned-out heating element on an electric one. You may be able to relight your pilot light, but replacing a heating element is a job for a professional. And, as always, if you just aren’t sure, call in a professional.
A clogged drain that will not allow your tub or sink to empty sounds like a simple enough problem to fix. You can get a chemical drain cleaner from the grocery or hardware store and have most clogs removed pretty quickly. There is also a small device in the one to two dollar range that looks like a zip-tie with teeth. When you insert it into your drain, the teeth grab hold of your clog and pull it out. If neither of these solutions fixes your problem, it could be more serious like corrosion in your pipes or even a root that has grown through them. If your quick fixes don’t work, call a plumber.
There are many minor plumbing problems that a determined DIYer can manage on his or her own. But, attempting to fix something that is above your skill level can lead to even greater problems. Don’t be a hero. When you find yourself in unfamiliar territory, then it is time to call in an expert to fix the problem correctly.