Weird Plumbing Problems And What You Should Do About Them

Every home is subject to a few plumbing problems now and again, from a blocked drain to an overflowing toilet. What happens when your plumbing problems are a little on the 'strange and unusual' side? Before you're tempted to call Ghostbusters, here are some weird plumbing problems you may encounter, and what you need to do to get them repaired.

Invasion of the tree roots

You're doing laundry, and notice that your toilet water starts to 'gurgle.' Maybe you flush the toilet, and water backs up in the sink or tub. You're not losing your mind; you're probably being invaded by tree roots, or at least your plumbing is. If you have trees outside your home that are growing anywhere near your sewer line, you could fall victim to this problem, as tree roots naturally seek out moist spots (like the inside of your pipes) as they grow.

Don't think that you can just cut down a tree and be safe from these fiendish roots. Sometimes, 'zombie roots' continue to grow long after the tree has been removed. Actually, they only continue to grow if they produce shoots or 'suckers' on the stump, so be on the lookout for these after you cut the actual tree down, or you could end up with a whole new tree on your hands.

The first thing you need to do if you suspect an invasion of tree roots is to call your plumber. Try to keep your hysteria in check, as the tree roots don't want to hurt you, they just want to drink your waste water. Your plumber will likely use a scope to verify the location of the roots, and if they have penetrated the pipes, the plumber will likely suggest that they be dug up and replaced. You may also want to consider having the aggressive trees removed, unless you want to risk the roots damaging the new pipe as well.

Noisy, creepy clanging pipes

If your pipes start making strange noises when you turn your water on, don't blame poltergeists or banshees. Blame it on the water hammer, which occurs when the water inside your pipes is forced to suddenly change direction because its path is blocked within the pipes. Your pipes are designed to have air chambers that regulate the flow of water within the pipes, but sometimes these get blocked up or don't drain properly. 

If you're a reasonably good DIY plumber, you could rig a new air chamber for your offending pipes, once you've located the specific section of pipe that's the problem. Or, you could just call the plumber and let them do the hard work.

An ancient evil that lurks in your basement

If you're terrified to turn on the hot water in your home, because you know that your ancient water heater just isn't up to the job, you're not alone. A good water heater can last up to 15 years, with proper maintenance. If yours is past this age, there's a very good chance you will need to have it replaced. 

If the water heater is showing signs of wear, such as leaking water, strange noises that persist beyond the initial 'firing up' to heat the water, and getting cold water when you expect it to be hot are all signs that your water heater has headed over to the dark side, and may need to be replaced. Don't be tempted to try and replace it yourself, especially if you have a gas connection to the heater. Leave it to a professional plumber, who will help you exorcise the old demon heater and install a heavenly new one that delivers hot water the ways it's supposed to.

Take advantage of the plumbing services that your plumber offers. They could help solve those weird plumbing problems, and help prevent more of them from occurring. You can also click here for more info.


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