Modern plumbing offers an unprecedented level of convenience for our modern lives as we are able to enjoy clean, fresh water on demand in our homes. Unfortunately many people take the convenience of modern plumbing systems for granted, meaning that they are likely to neglect the essential repairs and maintenance necessary to keep lines clear and the water flowing. Moreover, neglected maintenance of plumbing lines can also end up costing homeowners significantly more on their monthly water bills than they may think.
Minor Leaks in Your Plumbing
Chances are, there are a number of leaks scattered about your home even though you may not be able to see them. The winter season is especially notorious for causing leaks as poorly insulated pipes may freeze, causing the frozen water to expand and potentially burst the pipe. Many people have some kind of faucet, showerhead, or fixture that leaks an unassuming amount of water — in reality a faucet that drips at a rate of one drop per second has the potential to waste over 10,000 gallons of water over the course of a single year. Experts also suggest that over half of all residential toilets have some degree of leakage that not only wastes water but may also damage homes. By taking steps to repair these simple plumbing issues, homeowners can save hundreds or even thousands on their water bill every year.
Major Sewer Problems
The problems mentioned above only touch on the surface of potential plumbing disasters as some of the biggest and most expensive plumbing problems are typically localized in a home’s subterranean sewer lines. Sewers are built to handle a large capacity of waste and water, so when the average 6 inch diameter sewer line clogs up, it is likely more than a simple buildup of debris; in the case where a buildup of waste is causing the clog, sewer maintenance workers use a high-pressure water blaster to free pipes of the blockage. The biggest threat to sewer lines are actually tree roots. Since most pipes installed prior to the 1970s used clay, tree roots are able to penetrate the clay piping in their search for water — this can clog a pipe and result in serious water losses over years without detection.
Trenchless Sewer Line Repairs
For those with sewer lines that are over 40 years old, it may be best to contact a professional for a sewer inspection to ensure that your lines are uncompromised. Many homeowners try to avoid having their sewers repaired or replaced, as they do not want their yards to be destroyed in the process; thankfully there are trenchless sewer repair and replacement options available for homeowners. Unlike traditional sewer repairs which require extensive excavation to access the line, trenchless options instead start with a small access hole to get to the pipe. From there, plumbers use the existing sewer line as a guide to either repair the line with a cured-in-place-pipe (CIPP) or to simultaneously destroy the old pipe while replacing it with a new pipe in a process known as pipe bursting. Trenchless sewer repair and replacement methods are equally durable and many even come with warranties with coverage ranging from 10 to 50 years. If you believe you are paying more than you should on your monthly water bills, contact a professional and schedule an inspection to make sure that your sewer line is not compromised.