Keep Calm and Plumb On
Somewhere between the occasional clogged toilet and water heater maintenance, homeowners should expect to encounter some sort of plumbing emergency. Even for the most capable DIYer’s or those who schedule routine check-ins with their favorite plumber, the warning signs may be too subtle to catch. Like any other emergency, having a plan can help to minimize potential damage to the home. Here is a basic outline to guide you through the first steps:
Close the shut-off valve. This essential step is why every homeowner is encouraged to find the location before an emergency occurs. Some, like those positioned behind a toilet, are easy to find while others, like the main valve, may require some research. If it is not easily located, ask a plumber during their next visit. In an emergency, closing this will stop the flow of water into the home and prevent further water damage.
To further minimize damage, opening all sink faucets is suggested. It may also be worth checking the water heater and turning off the main valve to avoid damage to the unit. If a gas water heater is in use, turn off the gas first. At that point, take a brief moment to assess the damage and complete any simple repairs to stop additional damage. This may include placing plumber’s tape over a leak or a container beneath it to catch water.
From there, call a local and reliable plumber, like Olympic Plumbing Technology. Not only will they be able to respond as quickly as possible, but they can offer direction on how to begin addressing the issue – or when to avoid a potentially hazardous situation. If it has been cleared as safe, begin drying and mopping the water while waiting on their arrival. This will reduce the chances of significant water damage and mold.
Some common emergencies are broken water pipes, overflowing toilets, failing bathroom plumbing, sewer line blockage and gas leaks. The latter should be considered extremely hazardous but treated the same as any water leak by shutting off the main valve. With sewer line blockages or problems with the main water line, it may be worth reaching out to the water company, as they may help in addressing these as well.
But above all, remember to keep calm. Everyone will experience these at least once in their lives, but with the proper planning, a level head and the help of the Olympic Plumbing Technology team, things will be back to normal once more in no time.