There are some pretty obvious circumstances when a plumber should be called, mainly when your toilet has suddenly transformed into a geyser, or your kitchen floor is doubling as a wading pool. These residential plumbing situations require quick access to the water shutoff and a lot of towels in addition to calling a plumbing service. There are some plumbing situations however that you can do-it-yourself – but when do you know?
Does the Water Shutoff Work?
The main thing, to familiarize yourself with in your home, is the water shutoff valve. Knowing exactly where this valve is and getting to it too quickly cut off the access could be the difference in the hundreds of dollars of damage. In modern residential plumbing, there is not only a main water shutoff valve, but also ones for individual fixtures. These shutoff valves are handy when one fixture might be malfunctioning, but you still need to use appliances like a washing machine or a refrigerator ice maker.
Is There Immediate Danger?
By all means, if you cannot shut off the valve and the plumbing increasingly backs up, call a residential plumbing professional immediately. The old saying of ‘better safe than sorry’ rings true when it comes to having plumbing issues fixed in a hurry.
Are There Alternatives?
A non-flushing toilet is grounds for a plumbing call but if you have a second bathroom that can be used it’s more of a service visit than an emergency situation. If you are experiencing issues with the pipes in the home, identify if there are alternatives you can use until you make that a service call.
Assess The Situation Thoroughly
There are other variables to inspect before calling in residential plumbing service. For instance, your home might be without water but it could be that the whole block is out. Another example is a valve could have accidentally gotten turned off which results in the lack of water – an easily fixable solution and a waste of time and money to call in a plumber. In essence, make sure everything is secure on your end before calling for a visit by a plumber.
There are some things to remember about having a residential plumbing service call compared to an emergency. An after-hours call may cost more, and it will be a definite nuisance to the service person. That being said, if you’ve got Old Faithful spewing out of your kitchen drain and the water shutoff does nothing, time is of the essence.