3 Prominent Plumbing Problems And How to Solve Them

When it comes to plumbing problems like running toilets, leaky pipes and blocked drains Melbourne residents know a thing or two. It’s part of life in a busy city that occasionally something goes wrong. What do you do when that happens?

For those short on time, money or confidence it’s best to call in the pros to handle your plumbing woes. But for those who have an abundance of these three things—here’s how to get your hands dirty and fix these three prominent plumbing problems.

Blocked Drains

Blocked drains are the bane of many homeowners’ existence. They’re also one of the most common types of plumbing problems. The common symptoms of a blocked drain include lack of or slow draining, foul odours coming from the drain, raised water levels and gurgling sounds.

Depending on the severity of the blockage, solving the problem of a blocked drain can be easy. Here are a few methods you can try to unblock a minor drain blockage:

  • The baking soda and vinegar method: If you’re into natural home cleaners, you’ll know all about how powerful these two common household ingredients are. Mix baking soda and vinegar (a third of a cup each) together & immediately pour the fizzing concoction down the drain. Allow this mixture to work its magic for four to six hours and flush it down with boiling water once the sitting time is up.   
  • The boiling water trick: Fill up your kettle with normal tap water to its maximum, boil the water and slowly pour it down the blocked drain. If your blockage is not severe, this should do the trick. 
  • The salt and baking soda technique: Combine equal parts baking soda and standard table salt (half a cup each) and pour it down the drain you suspect is blocked. Allow this powder mixture to sit in the drain for 15 minutes, and once the resting time is up, pour boiling hot water down the drain. A chemical reaction will occur that should unblock the drain.

If unblocking your own drains isn’t something you want to spend your precious free time doing, or your blockage is beyond your DIY abilities, let a qualified plumber do this. If you’re looking for a blocked drain plumber Melbourne has plenty of skilled ones for you to choose from.

Running Toilets

In terms of wasted water and money, running toilets can cost you a lot. A faulty flapper and valve problems are the two most common causes of running toilets.

If you’re not familiar with any of those terms, you might want to call a plumber right about now. IF you do know what these terms mean, then you can get to work fixing them straight away.

Replacing a Flapper

Replacing a faulty flapper is fairly easy. All you need to do is switch off the water supply valve, flush the toilet to get rid of the water and unhook the flapper. Replace the flapper with the same make as the old one and follow the instructions for installation on the packaging.

Replacing a Valve

Just like replacing a flapper, replacing a valve is easy. Start by switching off the water supply and flush the toilet to empty the water. If any excess water remains, use a sponge to soak it up. Next, disconnect the water supply line, unscrew the valve locknut and remove the old valve. Use the instructions on the new valve’s packaging to install it, tighten the locknut and voila.

Leaky Pipes

Can you believe that something as seemingly small an issue as leaky pipes wastes up to 9,000 litres of water per year? Water wastage aside, leaky pipes can result in expensive water bills, damaged floors and furniture & turn your home into a damp breeding ground for moisture-loving pests like cockroaches.

A number of things can cause leaky pipes. Here are just a few examples of what commonly causes leaky pipes:

  • Broken seals
  • Clogged drains
  • Corrosion
  • Faulty or damaged pipe joints
  • Water pressure is too high
  • Tree roots
  • Loose water connectors
  • Extreme shifts in temperatures

While the permanent fixing of leaky pipes is a professional plumber’s domain, there are a few temporary fixes you can make while you wait for your plumber to arrive or if budget is a concern. These temporary fixes include:

  • Use epoxy compounds to temporarily patch up the leak on cast iron pipes 
  • Use repair sleeves to attend to pinhole repairs
  • Use pipe wraps to patch any types of leaks on any types of pipes
  • Use rubber pipe connectors for leaks in the middle or on the joint of pipes
  • Use pipe clamps for a longer-lasting temporary fix

Final Thoughts

Attending to plumbing problems is not for the faint of heart, but if you feel you have what it takes to tackle any of these common plumbing issues on your own then props to you! If not, remember that there are professionals who know the ins and outs of plumbing systems that are available to help you anytime of the day or night.