Your Guide to Handle a Plumbing Emergency

Plumbing Emergency

We live in routine. So much of American culture is based on routine. Many of us feel lost without it. When something unexpectedly goes wrong, it can throw people off for days or weeks. While we can’t help with every emergency beyond the age-old adage to “expect the unexpected”, we can help you through the plumbing emergency so you have the knowledge to respond correctly before one strikes your home or commercial property.

What Do We Consider a Plumbing Emergency?

The first thing to realize is that some plumbing problems aren’t emergencies. For example, you can have a health problem without it requiring immediate care at the emergency room. The same is true for your plumbing. So, let’s go over some common plumbing problems that we absolutely consider emergencies where time is of the essence!

Sewer System Backup

What is a sewer system backup? Well, let’s start with some basics. Your plumbing system does two basic things if we were to simplify it. It brings water in and takes waste out. A sewer system backup impacts the stuff going out. Instead of going where it’s supposed to go, the sewer system, it goes back up those pipes and into your home.

If this sounds bad to you, it’s because it is! This needs to be looked at right away and the cause needs to be determined.

Here are some of the most common issues that cause a sewer system backup.

  • Water-seeking tree roots find a way into your pipes and cause a massive clog.

  • Extreme damage to your sewer lines will cause a backup.

  • A small clog that was left untreated for a long time.

  • A municipal sewer problem from poor infrastructure, though this is less common and is likely out of your control.

These problems can be spotted before they spiral out of control into a sewer backup. Take care to notice if your system is showing signs of clogging. These include things like slow drainage, or the presence of bubbles or gurgling when water is going down the drain. It’s better to fix the problem before it becomes an emergency!

Gas Leaks

Plumbers don’t just work on water pipes. Almost all plumbers work on gas lines as well. While they do present their own challenges, at the end of the day, many of the same principles apply.

While some water leaks are small enough for them to not be emergencies, a gas leak is always an emergency! The reason is that natural gas is dangerous to humans.

Let’s go over the signs that you may have a gas leak.

  • Physical Symptoms: Gas leaks cause otherwise unexplained headaches, nausea, tiredness, and shortness of breath.

  • Signs Around the Home: Mysteriously dying houseplants or browning grass are signs that a gas leak is suffocating your plants. The smell of sulfur or rotten eggs is another sign as this smell is artificially added to the gas to help people notice it.

Water Heater Leaks

Not every water leak is an emergency. However, your water heater requires immediate attention if there is a leak spotted. While you can probably live without the use of one sink for a while, you’re not going to want to shut off your water heater. Besides even if you do, your water heater can easily suffer problems from being drained due to limescale deposits and other issues. This is why you need to treat your water heater leak with urgency.

The best way to prevent a greater emergency from happening is to regularly take a look at your water heater. Make sure there aren’t puddles or other signs of leaks. If you do happen to see a puddle, wipe it up and check back in an hour or two to see if a new puddle has appeared.

What to Do in a Plumbing Emergency?

Now that you understand what cases are emergencies. You need to understand what your response should be. The first step with a water issue is to turn off the water to your home. For a gas leak, you need to immediately evacuate. After that, call your local pros, so we can assist you right away!

The plumbing and drain experts at J&M Plumbing & Drain Cleaning have you covered for all of your plumbing needs. If you are ever in a plumbing emergency, give us a call at (215) 987-4607 or fill out an online contact form!