UNITED STATES – The Bay Area of California is home to nine counties, major cities like San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose, and a ton of sanitation problems. Nearly 2% of San Francisco homes have below average plumbing infrastructure, which is the highest rate of any borough and four times higher than Los Angeles.
When to call your local plumbing expert
Plumbing problems can occur in many ways and vary widely in terms of potential damage and cost. While it’s tempting to try to fix all common plumbing problems yourself, it’s important to know when to pack it up. Otherwise you could risk damaging your internal plumbing system significantly.
If your faucets are dripping, a pipe is overflowing, or you aren’t getting water from your faucets, turn off your home’s water valve and contact a local plumbing professional. A San Jose plumbing service, like ARS, can come to your home quickly, pinpoint the problem, and fix it for a reasonable price.
8 common plumbing problems in the Bay Area
When you live in San Francisco, you are often faced with plumbing issues that are either dangerous, harmful, or inconvenient. Here’s what you can do about it when they happen.
1. Leaking pipes
The Bay Area’s poor plumbing infrastructure often leads to leaky pipes. While colder climates have to worry about the pipes freezing and cracking when reheated, Bay residents have to worry about buildings sinking and affecting the pipes. Consult a professional to realign or repair your pipes.
2. Slow draining sink
Partially clogged or slow drains are often the result of a partial clog. Hair, soap, grease, or debris will accumulate in your drain over time and you will need to use a drain snake or drain cleaner to remove it. If the drain is still clogged, call a plumber to finish the job.
3. Clogged drain
A completely clogged drain can actually be an emergency when you can’t flush the toilet without flooding your house, or when you’re forced to shower in ankle-deep water. It is not recommended to try to unclog the drain as you could further damage the pipes. Instead, just hire a plumber.
4. Foul-smelling drain
If you smell a distinct sewer-like odor coming from the drain, mold could be forming in the pipes in your home. Mold is common in the Bay Area because it’s so humid, but letting it linger in the pipes makes you sick. Use a store-bought degreaser to get rid of that disgusting mold.
5. Dripping faucet
A dripping faucet is more than just a nuisance; it is a heavy water waster. Typically, a leaky faucet occurs when the faucet itself has deteriorated, but you can also determine if the problem is severe by turning off the faucet with minimal force. If it’s still leaking, replace the entire faucet.
6. Low water pressure
Low water pressure in a Bay Area home is a common problem, but the solution depends on what’s causing the pressure problem in the first place. Hidden leaks, pipe corrosion, and clogged drain lines can be the problem, but try scrubbing the spout to see if you’re removing buildup.
7. No hot water
A lack of hot water could indicate a problem with your water heater. Unfortunately, there are many reasons why your water heater isn’t working, from a problem with your thermostat to tank buildup. Do not service your water heater yourself as it may explode.
8. Running toilet
If your toilet runs constantly, the movable valve that controls the water that flows from the toilet’s tank to the bowl’s drain may be loose. A hidden leak could also be the culprit. Since a runny toilet wastes 200 gallons of water a day, you should call a plumber to fix the problem.