Plumbing issues are an unfortunate part of homeownership. Preventative plumbing can significantly reduce your risk of experiencing a major plumbing emergency, but it is still important to know what to watch for.
Here, we’ll answer the common question, “What is considered a plumbing emergency?” so you can be prepared and knowledgeable when you face plumbing problems.
What is a Plumbing Emergency?
A plumbing emergency refers to a situation that can result in immediate or long-term damage to a home, such as mould growth or water damage. Anything that puts the homeowner or occupants at risk is also considered a plumbing emergency.
What is Considered a Plumbing Emergency?
If you experience a plumbing emergency, contact a 24/7 plumber right away. A plumbing emergency can quickly turn into a serious, even dangerous problem that requires immediate professional help.
So what is considered a plumbing emergency? Here are 10 common plumbing emergencies to watch for.
1. Overflowing, Blocked, or Clogged Toilet
As one of the most frequently used plumbing fixtures in the home, toilet issues are a common plumbing emergency. A clogged toilet is an extremely common plumbing issue, often resulting from excessive toilet paper or non-flushable items going down the toilet.
While a minor toilet clog can be handled with a plunger, it is best to call an emergency plumber if you cannot clear the clog. If you keep trying to flush a clogged toilet and it overflows, you can end up with water damage and sewage backup.
Call an emergency plumber right away if:
- You cannot clear a clogged toilet
- Your toilet is overflowing
- Your toilet clogs frequently — this may indicate an underlying issue that needs to be addressed by a professional
2. No Hot Water
Have you ever felt the shock of ice-cold water when you were expecting a hot shower? Or noticed an unpleasant smell when your water is running? Often, no water or foul-smelling water is a result of water heater problems.
Reliable hot water is important, especially in homes with infants or elderly individuals. Along with no hot water, a malfunctioning or broken water heater can lead to leaks and water damage. Be sure to get your water heater serviced regularly and contact an emergency plumber right away if you have no hot water or a leaky water heater.
3. Leaky Taps
Is a leaking tap a plumbing emergency? It may not seem like it, but a leaky tap should be evaluated immediately by a plumber. Even small amounts of water can lead to damage or mould issues, so it is important to get leaks fixed right away before they progress.
4. Clogged or Overflowing Drain
If you run your kitchen or bathroom taps and notice the water is rising higher than normal or does not seem to drain, it is time to call an emergency plumber. While you can try to clear a clogged drain on your own, the wrong drain cleaner can damage pipes and may not even clear the blockage.
Ignoring a clogged drain can lead to an overflowing drain and costly water damage. The sooner a professional plumber can evaluate your clogged drain, the better. When in doubt, give Expand Group a call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our friendly, professional team can walk you through what to do and send an emergency plumber if necessary.
5. Sump Pump Failure
If you have a crawl space or basement in your home, there is likely a sump pump installed to clear the home of water in the event of heavy rain or flooding. If your sump pump is old or clogged, it can stop working.
If your sump pump fails, your home is at risk of serious water damage and costly repairs. If you are having trouble with your sump pump, call a plumber right away to get it fixed.
6. Burst Pipes
Ageing pipes, freezing temperatures, and other issues can cause pipes to crack or burst under increased water pressure. Call us right away if you experience this common plumbing emergency. Burst pipes can cause serious water damage, mould issues, foundation damage, and electrical problems.
To prevent burst pipes, have your pipes inspected regularly. A plumber can ensure any weak pipe joints are addressed and detect underlying issues to help prevent burst pipes. If a pipe does burst, a plumber can make sure no water damage behind your home’s walls will eventually turn into mould.
7. Backed-Up Sewer System
Sewer system backup is a significant plumbing emergency. If sewage is backing up into your home through drains, a sink, the bathtub, or a toilet, call an emergency plumber immediately.
Along with the risk of severe water damage and costly repairs, sewage backup is a serious health and safety concern for any occupants of the home. To avoid a backed-up sewer system, follow these tips:
- Do not put non-flushable items down the toilet — only flush toilet paper
- Do not pour grease, oils, or fats down sinks
- Contact a plumber immediately if you notice drain clogs, bad odours coming from drains, or a gurgling toilet
- Keep tree roots away from sewer lines
- Get old pipes lined or replaced
- Ask your plumber if you should have a sewer backup valve installed
8. Broken Water Line
Is there a problem with lower water pressure or sputtering water in your home? Or have you noticed soggy areas in your yard? If so, your main water line may not be working. Call an emergency plumber right away if you suspect a broken water line.
9. Severe Leaks
If you have a consistent leak that just won’t quit and has you dumping out bucket after bucket of water, call an emergency plumber right away. A severe leak can cause water damage or progress into a burst pipe and should never be ignored.
10. Worn-Out Fixtures
As plumbing fixtures age, they weaken and become more susceptible to leaks and cracks. If a plumbing fixture is worn out and suddenly breaks, your home is at risk of mould and water damage.
As with so many plumbing problems, prevention is the key. Showerheads, taps, spigots, and valves should be evaluated and replaced regularly to ensure the plumbing continues running smoothly in your home.
How Do I Know If I Have a Plumbing Emergency?
If you are experiencing any of the plumbing problems above, or another plumbing issue, give us a call. Our professional emergency plumbers in Perth are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can quickly assess your situation and let you know the best plan of action. When in doubt, call us right away.
Why Choose Expand Group
With plumbing problems, addressing the issue right away can prevent major damage to your home, keep you and your loved ones safe, and reduce the risk of costly repairs. Ignoring a minor plumbing issue or trying to fix a plumbing issue yourself can eventually lead to a plumbing emergency.
If you notice a drain that is slow to empty, a bad odour coming from a drain, frequently clogged drains, or a running toilet, call a plumber right away to fix the problem before it turns into a plumbing emergency.
From preventative plumbing to a plumbing emergency, our professional team is ready to tackle all your plumbing issues promptly, effectively, and affordably. Call Expand Group any time of day or night. Our caring team of professional plumbers is available 24/7 to keep your home and family safe in the event of a plumbing emergency.