In general, most plumbing issues are easy to fix, and many of them don’t require the help of a professional. However, there are some common issues that do merit a service call, and depending on the issue, the resulting expenses can be a bit painful for major problems.
7 Common Plumbing Repairs
Here, we’ll take a look at seven of the most common plumbing repairs homeowners in Richmond, VA face.
1. Dripping Faucet
A dripping faucet is a fairly simple and inexpensive fix, and it may seem like nothing more than a minor annoyance.
However, allowing this problem to go unfixed could waste hundreds of gallons of water every year. The consequence is a hike in your water bill. For significant leaks, that could get expensive.
The plumbing repair cost of fixing a leaky faucet varies depending on the type of faucet and the exact issue causing the leak. In some cases, it may be more cost effective to replace the faucet rather than repair it, particularly for complex types of fixtures.
2. Running Toilet
Running toilets can be very costly in comparison to leaking faucets if left unattended, wasting as much as 200 gallons of water each day, potentially adding hundreds to your monthly water bill.
Typically, the problem is just a bad flapper valve or broken chain, which is a quick fix.
In some cases, sediment buildup could prevent the flapper valve from creating a tight seal, resulting in the toilet running. Again, it’s necessary to replace the valve if this turns out to be the case.
3. Clogged Toilet
In most cases, you can fix a toilet clog with a plunger. Just pump the drain vigorously until the clog is dislodged, and the toilet should drain on its own.
If that doesn’t work, you’ve got a deeper clog. Professional toilet clog repair may be a bit costly depending on how stubborn and widespread the clog. A simple cleaning will run at the lower end of the scale, while extensive cleaning involving multiple lines can get more expensive.
Cleaning more complex toilet clogs requires dismantling the fixture and using an auger or snake to clear out the blockage—a time-consuming process, and one of the most expensive plumbing repair costs in many cases.
4. Slow or Clogged Drains
If your sink or shower is draining slowly, there is some kind of blockage that needs to be addressed. Often, you’ll have a complete blockage that prevents draining entirely. Again, you might be able to fix this on your own with a plunger and a bit of work, but serious clogs require professional services.
A professional plumber will use an auger or snake to clear out stubborn clogs, and the process generally doesn’t take more than an hour. If you have multiple clogged drains, you may have an issue with the main sewer line, in which case the cost will increase significantly.
5. Water Heater Problems
If your faucets take a long time to get any hot water, or if your “hot” water tends to just be lukewarm, it’s probably your hot water heater. Depending on the issue, these can be more expensive to repair than simple clogs or leaks, and in some cases, the unit may need total replacement.
If it’s a water temperature problem, all you might need is to adjust the temperature on the unit. If that doesn’t help, however, you might need a part to be replaced or repaired. Frequent issues include faulty thermostats or thermocouples.
If the tank is leaking, the whole unit may need replacement. In that case, a new water heater will likely cost a bit more for installation.
6. Low Water Pressure
Typically, low water pressure results from an issue with specific faucets. If you have low pressure from one fixture, you may need to clean or replace the aerator, which is simple. Most homeowners can do that themselves without much trouble.
However, widespread issues may be because of a bad pressure regulator valve. These plumbing repair costs are certainly more to replace, and they usually require a professional. You may also have problems with corroded or leaky pipes, which we’ll get into below.
7. Leaking Pipes
A cracked or corroded pipe can lead to water pressure problems and water damage, the latter of which can be significantly more expensive. Repairing the pipe itself could be inexpensive, but that’s not including other costs, such as locating the leak, repairing drywall, and clearing up water damage.
Fixing pipes in the ceiling tend to run higher as well, and if a pipe has burst, the plumbing repair costs multiply since the subsequent water damage is much greater.
Understanding Plumbing Repair Costs
Naturally, the earlier you take on a problem, the less expensive it will be, so if you notice a minor problem, get it fixed as promptly as possible.