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What is considered a plumbing emergency?

Aug 07, 2019

D.C. homeowner turning on the kitchen sink faucet to fill up a glass of water.

When it comes to plumbing emergencies, the sooner you get help, the better. Unlike a loud HVAC unit or a dead electrical outlet, plumbing problems can have very immediate and stress-inducing consequences. That’s why it’s important for homeowners to know which issues require emergency plumbing service.

Read more: What to Expect When You Need Emergency Plumbing Service

7 Problems that Call For Emergency Plumbing Service

Overflowing Toilet

Toilets can overflow for a number of reasons from clogs to a damaged float mechanism. Regardless of the cause, an overflowing toilet can become a nightmare if you don’t deal with the problem immediately.

Before you reach for the phone to call a plumber, you need to turn off your toilet’s water supply – this will prevent the problem from getting any worse. To shut off the water, locate the water supply valve on the wall behind the toilet and turn the valve all the way counterclockwise.

Once the water has been shut off, contact an emergency plumbing service to address the cause of the toilet malfunction. The plumber will turn the water back on once the problem has been solved.

Read more: Why is Water Seeping & Leaking from my Toilet?

Burst Pipes

Burst pipes are more common in the winter due to freezing temperatures, but emergencies can happen at any time, so it’s important to know how to address this problem before disaster strikes.

One of the most critical plumbing emergencies, a burst pipe can release gallons of water in a matter of minutes, causing lasting damage to your home. If a pipe bursts in your home, shut off the main water supply immediately and call an emergency plumber.

You should also remove any furniture or other belongings from the affected room to prevent further damage. Water in your home is a serious hazard, potentially leading to unhealthy mold and mildew growth if improperly treated.

Sump Pump Failure

If you live in an area that experiences heavy rainfall, your sump pump plays a vital role in protecting your home from flooding.

Sump pumps are responsible for removing water that has made its way to the basement or crawl space of your home. If your sump pump isn’t working properly when a storm hits, your home is at risk of water damage, which can cause mold and mildew to contaminate the air you and your family breathe.

The most obvious sign of a sump pump malfunction is flooding in your basement or crawlspace. Wet spots on drywall are also a huge warning sign that your sump pump isn’t working properly. Be sure to contact an emergency plumbing service to repair your sump pump ASAP.

Other signs that indicate you may need to fix your sump pump include:

  • Strange noises or vibration
  • Irregular cycling
  • Runs continuously

Read more: Do I need to replace my sump pump?

Broken Water Heater

The most common water heater problem we hear from homeowners is that their water is either too hot or too cold. However, there are other problems to take note of that require a hasty visit from your local plumber.

Certain noises coming from your water tank could warrant emergency plumbing service. For example, bubbling or dripping indicates that there’s a leak in the main tank, while clanking or gurgling sounds means that mineral deposits have gathered within the tank. This will require a professional to drain the water tank in order to clear out those deposits.

Other problems to note include water that has a strange color or odor. If you believe there’s something wrong with your water supply, we definitely recommend reaching out to an emergency plumber to properly diagnose the issue.

Leaky Pipes

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, up to 10 percent of American homes are losing 90 gallons of water each day due to leaky pipes.

Not only can fixing leaky pipes help you save on your water bills, but it can prevent costly damage to your home. A leaky pipe may start out as a minor issue, but even a small, unnoticed drip can have a serious impact. If left untreated, water damage can rapidly spread — electrical outlets can become serious shock hazards and mold growth can lead to dangerous health problems.

Ceiling stains, loose tile, warped hardwood floors, discolored paint or wallpaper, and musty odors are all indicators that a leak is present somewhere in your home. If you recognize the signs of a leak in your home, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Call in a professional to remedy the problem before it gets much, much worse.

Read more: 3 Reasons Why Your Ceiling is Leaking

Clogged Sewer Line

A blockage in your home’s main sewer line can have serious consequences that require emergency plumbing service. Wipes, feminine hygiene products, and paper towels are items that can easily cause clogs in your main sewer line, so you should never flush any of these down the toilet. Tree roots can also grow through cracks in the main sewer line and create blockages over time.

If the clog is serious enough, your sewer system can backup into your home. Multiple drain clogs, water pooling around basement floor drains, and gurgling sounds coming from plumbing fixtures are tell-tale signs of a sewer system backup. You should contact a plumber immediately if you notice any of these signs.

Read more: Do You Have Septic Tank Problems?

Washing Machine Hose Leak

Dripping or pooling under your washing machine usually indicates a leak in the hose, which should be handled right away. Water damage can spread quickly from this particular leak — in fact, washing machine malfunction is one of the leading causes of insurance claims — so it’s important to have a professional assess the situation at the first sign of a problem.

Put an end to plumbing problems with CroppMetcalfe.

Don’t hesitate to call in a professional when you need help. Our 5-Star Technicians have handled every plumbing emergency imaginable, so you can trust your home is in good hands. Call 703-372-9359 to speak with one of our plumbing experts or schedule a service appointment online today.


What Our Customers Say...

"I've been a CroppMetcalfe customer for 9 years and you have always provided outstanding service. I just had my semi-annual maintenance done, and I wanted to thank George for the truly outstanding service, professionalism, and excellent advice. He is definitely one of the best 5-Star Technicians I've had! Thank you CroppMetcalfe!"

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