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Common Household Plumbing Issues and How to Fix Them

Plumbing problems are a common occurrence in households, ranging from minor inconveniences to potentially damaging issues. Recognizing these common plumbing issues and knowing how to address them can save you time, money, and the headache of dealing with water-related challenges. Let’s explore some prevalent plumbing problems and effective solutions to fix them.

Leaky Faucets – Common Plumbing Issues

Leaky faucets are not only annoying with their constant drip-drip sound but can also lead to water wastage and increased water bills. Fortunately, resolving this common plumbing issue is often a straightforward task that can be tackled with a bit of know-how. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to fix those pesky leaks and regain a silent and water-efficient faucet.

Faucet Type Steps to Fix Leaks
Compression Faucets
  1. Shut off the water supply.
  2. Remove the handle to access the valve stem.
  3. Replace the worn-out washer.
  4. Reassemble the faucet.
Non-Compression Faucets
  1. Shut off the water supply.
  2. Remove the handle to expose the cartridge or ball.
  3. Replace O-rings, seals, or the cartridge.
  4. Reassemble the faucet.

Clogged Drains

Dealing with clogged drains is a common challenge in households, causing slow drainage and potential water backups. Fortunately, many clogs can be resolved with simple techniques and minimal tools. In this guide, we’ll explore effective ways to tackle clogged drains, ensuring a smooth flow in your sinks, showers, and tubs.

Clogged Drain Solutions Procedure Tips
  1. Place plunger over the drain.
  2. Push and pull vigorously to create suction.
  3. Flush with hot water.
Block the unclogged drain in double-bowl sinks for enhanced suction.
Drain Snake
  1. Insert snake until resistance.
  2. Rotate clockwise to break up the clog.
  3. Pull out the snake with debris.
Use with caution to avoid pipe damage.
Chemical Drain Cleaners
  1. Pour the recommended amount into the drain.
  2. Wait for the specified time.
  3. Flush with hot water.
Follow safety guidelines when using chemical cleaners.
Baking Soda and Vinegar
  1. Pour boiling water.
  2. Add baking soda and wait.
  3. Pour vinegar and hot water.
  4. Flush after 5-10 minutes.
Natural remedy for breaking down organic materials.
Remove and Clean P-Trap
  1. Place the bucket under a trap.
  2. Unscrew trap, remove debris.
  3. Clean and reattach.
Ensure the P-trap is securely reinstalled to prevent leaks.
Professional Plumber
  1. Call a plumber for advanced tools and techniques.
Regular plumbing maintenance can prevent severe clogs.

Running Toilets – How to Fix Plumbing Problems

A running toilet can not only be an annoyance with its perpetual sound of flowing water but can also lead to increased water bills. Addressing this common plumbing issue promptly is essential to prevent water wastage and maintain an efficient toilet system. In this guide, we’ll explore the steps to troubleshoot and fix a running toilet, restoring peace and conserving water.

Running Toilet Troubleshooting Steps Procedure Tips
Inspect the Flapper
  1. Lift the toilet tank lid.
  2. Check for flapper wear or misalignment.
  3. Adjust or replace the flapper as needed.
Ensure the flapper provides a proper seal on the flush valve.
Check the Fill Valve
  1. Identify the fill valve.
  2. Adjust water level using the adjustment screw.
  3. Replace the fill valve if necessary.
Ensure the fill valve allows water to stop filling at the desired level.
Inspect the Float
  1. Check the float for damage or interference.
  2. Adjust or replace the float if needed.
A properly functioning float regulates water levels accurately.
Examine the Chain
  1. Inspect the chain connecting the flush lever to the flapper.
  2. Ensure appropriate size and no tangles.
Adjust chain length for the flapper to close fully without being too tight.
Clean or Replace Parts
  1. Remove debris or mineral buildup affecting components.
  2. Replace damaged parts for optimal performance.
Regular cleaning prevents issues caused by debris or mineral deposits.

Common Issue:

  • Continuous water flows into the toilet bowl, leading to increased water bills.


  • Running toilets can often be fixed by examining and adjusting the flapper, flush valve, or fill valve. Damaged components may need replacement. If the issue persists, consulting a plumber for a comprehensive inspection and repair is advisable.

Low Water Pressure 

Low water pressure can be a frustrating issue, affecting various aspects of your daily routine, from showering to washing dishes. Identifying the root cause and addressing it promptly can help restore adequate water flow. In this guide, we’ll explore common reasons for low water pressure and effective solutions to regain the flow in your home.

Low Water Pressure Solutions Procedure Tips
Check for Leaks
  1. Inspect visible pipes, faucets, and fixtures for leaks. 
  2. Address any leaks by tightening or replacing damaged components.
Thorough inspection is crucial, as even small leaks can impact water pressure.
Examine the Main Shut-Off Valve
  1. Locate the main shut-off valve. 
  2. Ensure the valve is fully open; turn it clockwise to open completely.
The main shut-off valve controls the overall water flow into your home.
Check Pressure-Reducing Valve
  1. Locate the pressure-reducing valve. 
  2. Adjust the valve to increase water pressure if it’s set too low.
Consult manufacturer’s instructions for proper adjustment.
Inspect Faucet Aerators
  1. Remove and clean aerators on faucets. 
  2. Soak aerators in vinegar to dissolve mineral deposits for better cleaning.
Clean aerators to remove sediment or mineral buildup that restricts flow.
Inspect Showerheads
  1. Clean shower heads to remove debris or mineral buildup. 
  2. Consider replacing high-efficiency models for improved pressure.
Soak shower heads in vinegar or use a toothbrush for thorough cleaning.
Check for Pipe Corrosion
  1. Inspect exposed pipes for signs of corrosion. 
  2. Replace corroded pipes that may restrict water flow.
Copper or PEX pipes are less prone to corrosion than older galvanised pipes.
Contact Your Water Supplier
  1. If issues persist, contact your water supplier. 
  2. Collaborate with neighbours to check if they are experiencing similar issues.
External factors beyond your control may be contributing to low pressure.
Consider a Pressure Booster Pump
  1. Consult with a plumber about installing a pressure booster pump. 
  2. Enhances water pressure throughout your home.
Especially beneficial in multi-story homes for consistent water pressure.

Water Heater – Common Sewer Line Issues

Your water heater plays a crucial role in providing hot water for various daily activities. When issues arise, it can disrupt your routine and comfort. In this guide, we’ll explore common water heater problems and effective solutions to ensure a consistent and reliable supply of hot water in your home.

Water Heater Issues Description Solutions
Inconsistent Water Temperature Fluctuations in water temperature during usage.
  • Flush the water heater to remove sediment buildup.
  • Check and adjust thermostat settings.
  • Replace heating element or thermostat if necessary.
Unusual Noises Popping, rumbling, or banging sounds from the water heater.
  • Flush the tank to eliminate sediment. Inspect and replace the anode rod if necessary.
Water Leaks Around the Heater Visible water leaks or pooling around the base of the water heater.
  • Tighten loose connections. Replace a leaking pressure relief valve.
  • Check for tank corrosion and replace the water heater if needed.
No Hot Water Lack of hot water despite the water heater running.
  • Check the pilot light or circuit breaker. Replace faulty heating element or thermostat.
Foul Odour in Hot Water Unpleasant “rotten egg” odour in hot water.
  • Flush the tank to remove bacteria causing the odour.
  • Consider installing a zinc or aluminium anode rod or use an odour-reducing product.
Slow Hot Water Recovery Delayed or slow recovery of hot water after usage.
  • Insulate hot water pipes. Adjust the thermostat to a higher temperature.
  • Upgrade to a high-recovery rate water heater if needed.
Corrosion on the Tank Exterior Visible corrosion on the outer surface of the water heater tank.
  • Monitor for further deterioration.
  • Consider replacing the water heater if significant corrosion is present.
Pressure Relief Valve Issues Continuous leaking or discharging of the pressure relief valve.
  • Test and replace the pressure relief valve if it doesn’t seat properly.
  • Ensure the discharge pipe is correctly installed and unobstructed.

Pipe Leaks – Plumbing Problems

Discovering a leak in your home’s plumbing can be a cause for concern, but addressing it promptly can prevent water damage and the potential for more significant issues. In this guide, we’ll explore common causes of pipe leaks, how to identify them, and effective solutions to fix and prevent leaks in your plumbing system.

Pipe Leaks Guide Signs Common Causes Fixing Pipe Leaks Preventing Future Leaks
Visible Water Stains or Wet Spots
  • Discoloration on walls or ceilings.
  • Wet spots on floors or carpets.
  • Temporary Patch.
  • Pipe Sleeves or Wraps.
  • Regular Inspections.
  • Maintain Moderate Water Pressure.
Dripping Sounds
  • Audible dripping or running water sounds.
  • No visible water stains.
High Water Pressure.
  • Pipe Replacement.
  • Professional Repairs.
Insulate Pipes.
Increased Water Bills
  • A sudden or unexplained spike in water bills.
Freezing Temperatures.   Upgrade Aging Pipes.
Mould or Mildew Growth
  • Musty odours.
  • Visible mould or mildew.
Age of Pipes.    

Frozen Pipes – Common Plumbing Issues Fix

Frozen pipes are a common woe during cold winter months, leading to potential damage and disruptions in water supply. Knowing how to address this issue promptly is crucial to prevent bursting and extensive repairs. In this guide, we’ll explore the causes, signs, and effective solutions for dealing with frozen pipes in your home.

Frozen Pipes Guide Signs Thawing Frozen Pipes Preventing Frozen Pipes
No Water Flow
  • No water coming out of faucets.
  • Reduced or no water flow.
  • Keep Faucets Open.
  • Apply Heat to Frozen Areas.
  • Insulate Pipes.
  • Seal Gaps and Cracks.
Visible Frost on Pipes
  • Frost or ice on exposed pipes.
  • Icy appearance on pipes.
  • Wrap Pipes with
  • Warm Towels. Use a Space Heater.
  • Maintain Adequate Heating.
  • Drip Faucets During Cold Spells.
Unusual Sounds
  • Strange noises, such as clanking or banging.
  • Indications of expanding ice.
  • Use Hot Water Soaked Rags.
  • Thawing with a Warm Compress.
  • Disconnect and Drain Outdoor Hoses.

By familiarising yourself with these common plumbing issues and their solutions, you empower yourself to troubleshoot and address problems as they arise. While some issues can be tackled with DIY solutions, don’t hesitate to enlist the help of a qualified plumber for more complex or persistent plumbing problems. Regular maintenance and prompt attention to plumbing issues contribute to the overall well-being of your home’s plumbing system.


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