Do you call a licensed plumber or DIY it? Despite the claims of popular DIY shows, not to mention YouTube videos, there are just some plumbing issues you cannot DIY. The key for the average homeowner is knowing their own limits. What might be a simple fix for a professional could run into two or three times the trouble and cost with a DIY-gone-bad.

That said, Knoxville Plumbing has put together a short list of plumbing issues that can usually be a successful DIY project along with ones that should be handled by a licensed plumber.

DIY

The most successful DIY projects will only require a minimal number of tools and will be in easy-to-access areas. They may require a trip to the hardware store, but should not take too much time out of your day.

Leaky faucets

Faucets leak from either the handles or the spout. To DIY repair the leak you have to determine where it originates. After you figure out where the leak is, turn off your water supply to the faucet. Next,  disassemble that part of the faucet, using appropriate tools. You may need to replace O rings, washers, cartridges, or an aerator. Taking the worn or damaged part with you to the hardware store will help you to figure out exactly which replacement you need.

 

Clogs

Most clogs respond well to DIY treatments. Try pouring boiling water down the clogged pipe, as long as it is not PVC. Other common and successful DIY tricks are plunging, baking soda and vinegar, or a small drain snake. You can also remove the P trap under the sink to try to find the clog. If the clog persists, or you do not want to start pulling your pipes apart, your best bet is to call a licensed plumber to get deeper into the problem.

 

Toilet “running” or “phantom flush”

If your toilet continues to run after the tank is full, it is usually an easy fix. These problems occur when there is a problem with the fill tube, the water level float, the flush handle/flapper chain, or the flapper itself. You will have to drain the tank and bowl to perform some of these repairs, so if it looks more troublesome than you have time for, just give us a call.

 

When to call a licensed plumber

We recommend every homeowner have basic plumbing tools, including a heavy pipe wrench, a water meter key,  an adjustable wrench, and a toilet auger. These jobs, however, can lead to much more complex problems and require specialized equipment and experience to correctly diagnose and repair. We recommend calling a licensed plumber for these kinds of jobs.

Pipes

Anytime you have to take pipes apart, you should have a licensed plumber doing the work. They will be able to assess multiple factors including the age of your pipes and the exact needs for your pipes when it comes to putting everything back together again.

Sump pumps

The sump pit, usually in the basement,  collects water that drains into the house from groundwater or perimeter drains. Once water has accumulated in the pit, the pump pushes the water away from the house. Your sump pump is an easy to forget — an out-of-sight, out-of-mind appliance. You do not want to forget or ignore it. The potential for serious problems if it is not working properly makes this type of installation, maintenance, and repair best for a licensed plumber rather than DIY. You do not want to deal with a broken or improperly installed sump pump.

Mainline backups

Gurgling sounds and water backing up in your drains, toilet, or bathtub indicate a major problem. Mainline backups require specialized equipment including a camera attached to a line to accurately assess the damage and plan repairs. The repairs often entail using digging equipment to access the damaged pipes. You definitely want a licensed plumber dealing with the wastewater rather than exposing yourself to this hazardous waste.

A failed DIY

If you get started with a DIY that turns into a nightmare, that is where we come in! Knoxville Plumbing has expert licensed plumbers standing by to help with any of your plumbing concerns. Here are a few of the most common DIY plumbing fails, according to Family Handyman. You can read details about each of these fails on Family Handyman.

 

10 Most Common DIY Plumbing Fails

  1. Overtightening connections
  2. Wrapping Thread Tape Backward or Using the Wrong Tape
  3. Using Drain Cleaners as a First Choice
  4. Tackling a Plumbing Job Without Spare Parts
  5. Not Turning Off the Water
  6. Using Too Much Muscle On a Stuck Shut Off Valve
  7. Sweating Copper Pipes With Water in the Line
  8. Not Having the Right Tools
  9. Mixing up Wyes, Tees, and Elbows
  10. Installing a Saddle Valve for an Ice Maker or Humidifier

Conclusion

DIY projects are a great option for many homeowners in the right circumstances. We appreciate the need to save money and the sense of satisfaction that comes from a job well done. But, if your DIY project gets out of control or if the plumbing problem is beyond your expertise, Knoxville Plumbing can help. Give us a call today!

Some plumbing issues are minor nuisances that you might ignore for a while until it bothers you too much. A leaky faucet, a slow drain, a running toilet that you have to jiggle the handle to get it to stop, are examples of potentially minor plumbing issues. Some plumbing issues require attention immediately before they turn into a disaster. Keep your plumber’s number handy if you notice these potential problems:

Leaks

 

Any signs of leaks such as water spots on ceilings or walls or under your sinks should be taken care of immediately. Catching a leak early may result in just needing to dry out the wet surfaces.

Leaking Water Heater

 

You probably don’t look at your water heater often so if you do see water around it take action now. It could be a crack in the internal tank. A small puddle can turn into gallons of water damaging walls and floors. Water heaters have limited life spans. Frequent inspections and maintenance is good practice.

A big Increase In Your Water Bill

 

This could indicate a leak in your underground pipes. It could be from a constantly running toilet that you never use or a leak in a part of your house that you don’t frequent.

Sewer Gas Smell

 

You’ll need a plumber if you have cracks in your sewer lines. Some sewer gas problems are easy to solve such as keeping the water level up in your drain traps by pouring a cup of water down the drain.

Mold and Mildew

 

Look out for mold and mildew on any surfaces. Check in closets and back of cabinets. A leak can go undetected for a long time and grow mold in a widespread area.

A Wet Spongy Lawn

 

A wet lawn when the weather has been dry could indicate an exterior water main leak.

Frozen Pipes

 

Thawing your pipes as soon as possible can prevent a burst pipe resulting in flooding. Your plumber can thaw your pipes and help you to prevent it from happening again.
 A good thing to do right now is to make sure everyone in your household knows how to turn the water off to the whole house in case of an emergency. If you have an instance that you need to call a plumber, it might be a good time to get a complete plumbing inspection to prevent other instances.

Water is one of our most needed natural resources and one of the most at danger around the world. Fortunately we can control our water usage utilizing the growing popularity of green plumbing and responsible practices. Green plumbing is the use of energy saving appliances, low flowing fixtures and responsible practices for using the least amount of water to get the job done.

What Does The Future Look Like?

40 of our 50 great states are concerned they will have a water shortage in the next 10 years, so it’s important to adjust our lifestyles and turn to greener products moving forward as soon as possible. There are so many ways to make our lives impact the earth less in a negative way, whether you can afford the best technology or just make better habits and teach your children the valuable lesson of caring for our home, Earth.

What Can I Do Today?

With a plumber who offers green plumbing services, you can walk-through your home and discuss the potential devices and replacements that can be made to reduce your water use according to you and your family’s needs. Scheduling an inspection of your home will allow your plumber to find any needed repairs or low efficiency fixtures and hopefully restore the 14% of water loss due only to leaks! Water is used in toilets (26%), showers (17%), baths (2%), faucets (16%), washing machines (22%), and dishwashers (1%), so all of these points of entry are potential ways to make your water usage more efficient. Already planning a bathroom or kitchen remodel? Plan on updating your home’s efficiency and conservation as well as its aesthetics one room at a time! Replacing old fixtures with new, efficient fixtures will reduce the carbon footprint for the next generations and save you money, by using less but also by possibly qualifying you for a government tax break or rebate.

How Much Water Is Saved?

Since the largest amount of water is literally flushed down the toilet, let’s look at the alternative: a low-flush toilet. A low-flush toilet can save you half the water used per flush, up to 1300 gallons of water per MONTH! That’s 15,600 gallons per year! Each 12,000 gallons of water saved per year (1,000 gallons per month) equals about $140.00 per year in your water bill. This can be achieved by replacing just one of your inefficient fixtures, so replacing more than one can double or triple your savings. Toilets made after 2002 were all manufactured with this conservation feature, something a layperson probably wouldn’t know, so it’s important to get your trusted plumber to your house to tell you what you’ve got and what you should get! Low-flow faucets and shower heads are also available replacements, as well as energy-star efficient dishwashers and clothing washers.

What Changes Can I Implement Without Replacing Everything?

A great start is to prevent that 14% of water from being lost due to leaks by having a plumber inspect and repair any leaks on your property. It’s then that he or she can educate you on the changes you can make to your home in the future to be greener and save money. Otherwise there are too many helpful habits you can begin to tell you them all in this article. Some of the best habits are taking short showers instead of baths, letting your lawn grow longer to retain its water more, wash only full loads of dishes and laundry (and in cold water if possible), and do not let water run longer than 5 minutes. You can achieve this by lathering your hands long before turning on the faucet, washing your car with a bucket of water rather than a hose, and sweeping your decks and driveway with a broom rather than the hose.

Each person and family is responsible for so much waste, you can imagine how helpful it can be to reverse some of the effects you and your family are making. It’s inevitable that you will tell the next person what you’ve done, how much you’ve saved and how great your kids are taking to new, responsible practices and then they will make the first steps toward a greener mindset too!

The hard truth about commercial building plumbing maintenance is that it’s far more expensive to repair the water damage associated with a plumbing issue after it’s happened, not to mention the money lost due to having otherwise operating sections of your building under maintenance. If you’ve stumbled upon this article about commercial plumbing maintenance, congratulations! You are one step further from the costly repairs of neglecting to take these preventative measures.

Find Your Plumber BEFORE Your Problem Occurs

There is not only residential and commercial plumbers but even further classifications of plumbers for different types of commercial buildings. There is far more to it than you probably are aware and it would benefit you to have a company you trust come out and tell you what kind of commercial building you are operating in and what kind of plumber you need for routine maintenance and emergencies. Hopefully, this appointment builds a bridge for you to foster an on-going relationship!

Schedule Regular Maintenance

Once you’ve established the kind of building you operate and a relationship with a plumber or plumbers you trust, you should schedule regular maintenance to keep that relationship strong and ensure you’re doing everything you can to avoid any costly plumbing issues and loss of business in the future. Plumbing issues are inevitable due to aging buildings, shifting foundations and inadequate building materials used at different periods of time. Having a regular plumber you trust visit the building and assess your plumbing, will not only catch problems early but improve your future costs by recommending the best new building materials and replacement parts.

Look For Signs

Before you even call your plumber, you can assess your own building by visiting each bathroom and looking for any of the following signs: water temperatures of faucets being too hot, cold or slow to change, frequent clogged toilets or drains, and dripping faucets or other signs of leaking (check under sinks and look for water damage in ceilings). Having a list will streamline your plumber’s visit, possibly save you money and give you a reference point to compare how your plumbing has improved after your plumber works his magic!

Taking care of your plumbing needs before an emergency is of the utmost importance when taking ownership of a commercial building. You’re doing the responsible thing for your business and all those it affects, including employees and customers, by taking these three simple steps to ensure the integrity of your building well into the future!

 

Knoxville Commercial Plumbing Services

When it comes to Knoxville commercial plumbing services, there are several things that must be part of your experience. First of all, you need to make sure you are dealing with a company that has worked with businesses of all shapes and sizes throughout Knoxville and surrounding areas. Experience is a must. To that end, you’ve come to the right place for commercial plumbing services that have been working with the businesses of Knoxville for quite some time.

Our range of commercial and residential plumbing services ensures there is nothing that we can’t handle. At the same time, our commercial plumbing services are very distinctive from our residential plumbing services. This means that when you call on our experts at Knoxville Plumbing, you’re getting professionals who have formidable experience in dealing with all manner of commercial plumbing projects, tasks, and emergencies.

Contact us today for any commercial plumbing demands you may have.

Knoxville TN Commercial Plumbing Services

Burst pipes, frozen pipes, or a broken toilet are just a few of the concerns we address. These are things that can seriously disrupt the flow of your day-to-day business. These are things you want to deal with quickly.

Make sure you avoid choosing the wrong Knoxville TN commercial plumbers by keeping the following in mind:

 

They aren’t available 24/7:

Emergencies can strike at any time. Why would you want to waste your time and money on Knoxville plumbers who aren’t willing to keep this fact in mind? Old pipes can fail out of nowhere. Internal sewer lines can suddenly clog up. Something can unexpectedly explode. These things aren’t meant to frighten you. It’s just important to have Knoxville commercial plumbers who are available 24/7. We are.

Lack of experience:

We touched on this before, but it’s the kind of thing that’s worth mentioning twice. Not only should the plumber you hire have experience, but they should be able to back up that experience with photos, testimonials, and similar items. We do.

They don’t know your business:

Your plumber doesn’t need to be an expert on the restaurant business, or flower shops, or toy stores, or whatever your business is all about. At the same time, it’s not unreasonable to ask for plumbers who offer experience in assisting businesses just like yours. We will.

 

These are the things to avoid. When you know what to avoid, knowing what you actually need in certified, experienced Knoxville TN commercial plumbers becomes a great deal easier. Contact us now.