When Is It Time To Call a Plumber?

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Whether you consider yourself a total do-it-yourselfer or a complete rookie when it comes to home repairs, it’s important to know when it’s time to leave something to the professionals.

All too often, homeowners try to cut costs by trying to repair water issues themselves and end up causing more damage that can be twice as costly to repair in the end.

A good rule of thumb to work from is that if you can’t properly diagnose the source of the issue, it’s best not to try to fix it yourself, and to call a plumber instead.

Here are seven situations that should alert you that it’s time to call a plumber:

1. Bathtub, Sink, or Toilet That Won’t Drain

Most clogs will only worsen if they’re not dealt with immediately. Now there are ways that you can unclog a toilet without a plunger, but if over-the-counter drain cleaners, plungers, or drain snakes aren’t working, call a plumber immediately before the clog gets worse. Trying to repair the clog yourself, you may end up scratching the porcelain or damaging the pipes.

2. Dripping Faucet

While in most cases you may be able to easily tighten a leaky faucet, not all faucets are quick fixes. A small leak may not seem like a big deal, but a leaky faucet dripping at the rate of one drop per second can waste up to 3,000 gallons in one year—the equivalent of 174 showers. It’ll likely cost you much more to let the faucet leak than it would to call a plumber.

3. Poor/Inconsistent Water Pressure

Whether it’s poor water pressure from a single faucet, or a common issue across your entire home, it’s best to call a plumber if you’re having water pressure issues. While it may be as simple as cleaning out a single fixture or unclogging a pipe, there may be bigger issues with your water supply that need to be resolved.

4. Frozen Pipes

Trying to thaw frozen pipes on your own could result in cracked pipes or even worse, full bursts. To save yourself from a huge mess, call a water damage restoration specialist.

5. Water Heater Issues

If your water isn’t getting hot enough or water temperature is inconsistent, it’s likely you have water heater issues that need to be looked at by a professional. If your water heater isn’t getting hot enough, it can become a cesspool for bacteria. And nobody likes sudden bursts of scalding water in the shower. Tinkering with a flammable, pressurized water heater on your own can be dangerous so leave it to the pros.

6. Home Renovation Projects

If you’re doing home renovations that involve plumbing in any way, it’s best to seek out the services of a plumber. They can ensure that all proper permits have been acquired and that all work is up to code.

7. Visible Leaks or Water Damage

If there are any signs of water damage in your home, including water stains or mold, call a plumber or water restoration specialist immediately. Water damage in your home can cause mold, which can be hazardous to your health.

For more helpful plumbing tips or to seek consultation about any water damage in your home, contact a local water restoration specialist today.

Author:Water Damage Advisor
Water Damage Advisor

The Water Damage Advisor content team is made up of multiple contributors, writers, and editors. We are your resource hub for anything related to water damage, mold and restoration needs that you may be challenged with facing.

  1. HomeWaterWorks. (2016) Showers. Retrieved from: http://www.home-water-works.org/indoor-use/showers
  2. Benjamin Franklin. (2014) 5 Signs You Need To Call A Plumber. Retrieved from: https://www.benjaminfranklinplumbing.com/blog/5-signs-you-need-to-call-a-plumber
  3. Custom Air & Plumbing. (2017) 3 Signs It's Time to Call a Plumber. Retrieved from: http://customairinc.com/blog/3-signs-time-call-plumber
  4. Texas Plumbing Diagnostics. (2015) 12 Signs It's Time to Call a Plumber. Retrieve from: https://tpdtx.com/12-signs-its-time-to-call-a-plumber/

32 Responses

  1. It’s interesting that a dripping faucet could be a good reason to call a plumber. I’ve noticed two of my faucets are dripping and I want to have it stopped. I’ll have to call a plumber to make sure it’s fixed appropriately and quickly and to make sure it’s not a serious problem.

  2. My wife and I have been talking about doing some renovation work in our bathroom. In the article, it says that it may be best to utilize the services of a plumber when renovations involve plumbing. I know my wife wants to get new sinks and faucets, so maybe I would be best off calling a plumber for installation.

  3. It is good to know that plumbers can help if you have issues with frozen pipes. I did not realize that frozen pipes could result in cracking pipes. Asking friends and family for references would be a good idea to find a plumber who is reliable and comes with proper equipment.

  4. I like your advice to call a plumber if over-the-counter drain cleaners, plungers, or drain snakes aren’t working. Clogs will worsen over time. Make sure to find a plumber before your emergency; it’s no fun to try and do research when you can’t use your plumbing.

  5. I’ve been looking at having my bathroom remodeled in the near future. I was interested to read that you suggest I enlist the services of a plumber if I’m attempting any sort of renovation due to ensuring proper permits and code. I definitely want my remodel done right the first time, so I definitely wouldn’t mind hiring a plumber to ensure this.

  6. I’ve never thought to consult with a plumber because of home renovations. That sounds like a really good idea since you mentioned they can help ensure you have all the proper permits. I feel like that could save me from many problems in the long run. Luckily, renovations haven’t started, so I have more time to find a reliable plumber.

  7. I think you make a great point in getting repairs as soon as possible so that bacteria doesn’t gather in concentrated cesspools. My kitchen faucet is broken and it might be because it is clogged with something like sludge. I’ll have to consider your tips and get that fixed so that the bacteria doesn’t spread.

  8. Thanks for your comment about how you should hire a plumber so that you don’t make your drainage problems worse. I like how you said that they should be able to repair water problems that may arise in your home as well. My husband and I are considering expert plumbers to do some drain cleaning in our kitchen and bathrooms.

  9. Our neighbors had a pipe burst last winter when they froze and weren’t treated. I want to be sure and not make the same mistake this year because it is supposed to be really cold. It will probably be best to get a professional to come fix it if we experience the same issues.

  10. I’ve noticed recently that the faucet in my kitchen is dripping and this is not a small leak. It seems like I need a good plumber to fix this issue. I hope I will find a true professional so that I will not waste up to 3,000 gallons in one year!

  11. It’s great to know when calling a plumber becomes a necessity. Our water heater has actually been acting up recently, so I’m glad I read this. We don’t want a cesspool of bacteria in our home, so we’ll look for a pro to come and look at it!

  12. It’s nice to learn that with inconsistent water pressure there can be a good indicator of an issue with either a clogged fixture or a bigger one on water supply. That is why it would be important to call a plumbing service to do some inspection and repairs as you’ve mentioned. That’s timely since that’s exactly the issue with our water supply. I’ll be sure to follow your advice and locate a reliable plumber through BBB’s website to fix it for us. Thanks!

  13. Thank you for mentioning how you should consult with a professional when needing to unclog your pipes so your water pressure improves. It is important to remember that taking the time to do some research can help you find the best plumber for your needs. I understand that comparing several companies and reading online reviews can help you find the best company to care for your pipes.

  14. These are all great reasons to call a plumber! A lot of people aren’t aware of even the simple things plumbers can take care of like water heaters issues. Thanks for creating this content to help others.

  15. I like that you mention how important it is to immediately call a professional if you want to avoid a huge mess when dealing with frozen pipes. My sister is looking to hire a plumbing company since the winter is coming and she doesn’t want to not have hot water. I think I will also talk to her about not trying to fix frozen pipes.

  16. I really think that people should leave pipe leaks, low water pressure, clogged drains, etc. to the professionals. Now, obviously if you can do it yourself and you are a handyman/woman then by all means get it done (just be absolutely positive you are doing it right). Good plumbers provide fixes that last because they have been doing it so long and have seen almost everything. If you have visible leaks or water damage – stop whatever you are doing and call a local plumber so mold doesn’t get involved like this article talks about. Anyways, just my two cents!

  17. I didn’t know that all too often, homeowners try to cut costs by trying to repair water issues themselves and end up causing more damage that can be twice as costly to repair in the end. Our sink is clogged again because my nephew dropped his toy. My dad suggested to call plumbers and shared this article with us. It says that if there are any signs of water damage in your home, including water stains or mold, call a plumber.

  18. I like that you mentioned that hiring a plumber to inspect a home renovation is a good idea. My wife and I are remodeling the kitchen and bathroom downstairs. Having someone make sure all of the renovations are up to code would be great, and provide us with a sense of safety.

  19. I have noticed that my water isn’t staying hot as long as it used to. When I take a shower the hot water only lasts for about 5 minutes before it goes cold again. That is good to know that it might be having issues and I should call in a professional to come take a look. I will have to find a good plumber to help me. Thank you for the information!

  20. Now that you mention it, our water gets hot every once in a while but never consistently. I’m worried that the pipes are frozen over just because of how cold it’s been lately. We’ll have to call a plumber to come take a look and thaw them out if needed.

  21. My family that lives in Ohio had their pipes frozen just a couple weeks ago because it was so brutally cold. We warned them that it could happen and they better keep an eye on it. They had to call a plumber to get it all fixed. All is good now, but could have been avoided.

  22. I think that what you said here about calling a plumber was really important. Ever since moving into our new home, it seems like all of our sinks will not drain, and I think that calling a professional would be helpful! Thanks again, and I will make sure that we have him explain to us how to unclog the drain without a plunger.

  23. Thanks for your tip to hire a plumber when you don’t have normal water pressure coming out of your sinks. I like how you said that something may just need to be unclogged or it could be a lot worse. A professional is the right person to call. My husband and I lack the skills and expertise needed to see why are sink’s faucet keeps dripping in two fo our bathrooms. We are looking into plumbers to discover the problem and fix it for us.

  24. As a professional plumbing company owner myself, I can tell you guys the preventative maintenance is going to be your best defense against major plumbing disasters. Most plumbing problems are caused by improper installation. It is amazing how many plumbers out there do subpar installation. When this happens, if it goes unchecked, this is when big disasters can happen. I recommend doing a visual check of your plumbing at least twice a year. Look for signs of corrosion and obvious signs of water

  25. I’ve been having some water pressure problems lately that I can’t seem to figure out. You mentioned in your article that the problem could be as simple as a clogged pipe, or as big as a water supply issue. I’ll definitely make sure I look into hiring a professional to make sure I get the problem taken care of the right way.

  26. It’s interesting how you point out that trying to thaw frozen pipes on your own could result in cracked pipes, or even full bursts. My parents usually have problems with their plumbing, especially in the winter when it gets so cold outside. I think they would really benefit from having an expert come out and take a look at it.

  27. Thanks for explaining when it could be good to call a plumber. I’m glad you mentioned that having poor water pressure in a single faucet could warrant a visit from the plumber. If this is the case, it sounds like you should be aware of the different water supplies in your home and monitor them for any changes.

  28. I have recently been thinking about getting a plumber and wanted to look into some tips. I appreciated the part about the water heater that it needs to be looked at by a professional. I think that it’s so important to have someone who has the experience look at that kind of problem.

  29. It seems like I’ll need to hire a plumber to repair my faucet, as we haven’t been able to stop our faucet from leaking. I had no idea that a leaky faucet could waste up to 3,000 gallons in just one year! I’ll make sure to show this to my family, so they can understand why we need to hire a plumber. Is there anything else we should keep in mind?

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