Your home plumbing is comprised of two different types of pipes: water supply pipes and drain-waste-vent pipes. Water supply lines bring water into your home, first passing through the meter and then divided into cold water for immediate use and hot water that will go into the water heater before coming to your faucet. Drain-waste-vent-pipes remove greywater and sewage from your home that comes from sinks, showers, tubs, appliances, and toilets. If clean water is flowing from your pipes, you probably don’t think much about this system running through your home. These pipes should last for decades, but they are put through quite a workout every day. There are signs to look for that may signal that there may be trouble lurking in your plumbing system.
Here are 5 top signs that you may need to repipe your home and a few smaller warning signs.
If the water coming streaming from your faucet has a yellow, red, or brown hue, this is a red flag. Discolored water is a symptom of built-up rust in the pipes. If only your hot water has the discoloration, your water heater is probably the culprit.
Bad Tasting Water
While most of us drink bottled water, while we are brushing our teeth, we can tell if our water tastes terrible. Anytime you are running water, and it smells bad, this indicates a problem with your pipes.
You probably know the age of your home. This is usually the same age as your pipes. Those pipes that are over 50 years old are probably ready to be replaced. Lead pipes certainly cause for concern no matter the age. If you have lines made of polybutylene, it is a good idea to check them quarterly.
Those homes built in the 1920s have plumbing systems that were piped with lead and polybutylene pipes. Homes built in the 70’s usually contain galvanized steel pipes. These often erode at a faster rate than other materials.
Here is a good rule of thumb Brass and galvanized steel supply pipes typically last 80 to 100 years, while copper can go anywhere from 70 to 80 years. Cast-iron drain lines will usually survive 80 to 100 years, and those made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) are typically good for 25 to 40 years.
Lead and polybutylene pipes are susceptible to leaks. Water coming from lead pipes can cause serious health issues. While condensation on hot water pipes, leaking pipes are a severe problem. A simple repair could do the trick, but more costly repairs could be on the horizon. Checking the conditions of the lines at this time could save you money in the long run. If you get caught in the cycle of making one repair after another, you could spend a ton on those repairs and still have to replace those pipes.
Rust and corrosion are evident when you see stains, flaking, and discoloration. If your pipes are corroded, it is a good idea to replace them due to the lines’ questionable integrity. When you have a buildup of sediment in your pipes, you will often have low water pressure.
What’s All That Noise?
We often get used to the house’s knocks and bumps and chalk it up to the place “settling.” If your pipes are making their music in your walls, this could signal a plumbing problem. These are some familiar sounds and what they could mean:
- Whistle – Toilet ballcocks, faucet washers, or high water pressure could be the cause. High water pressure could severely damage your pipes over time.
- Squeal – This usually signals a blocked valve or pipe, generally caused by pipes buildup.
- Shrieking – Air in the pipes or kinks in the water line could be the culprit here. Water pressure tanks that shriek signals an obstruction.
- Banging – Bangs or clunks could be the sign of loose pipe-mounting or worn-out dishwasher.
- Knocking – When the hot water is running, hitting usually means your water heater needs to be turned down.
Getting Down to the Repiping
Once you’ve identified that you need to have your home repiped, you may wonder what this entails. This repair could take a few hours or a week, depending on your home’s size and the severity of the repair or repipe. Costs vary from $600 to $2,000 for repipe just one fixture, like the toilet or the tub. To repipe your entire home, the costs will range between $4,000 and $15,000. Getting your home repiped helps to get your house up to market value when putting it on the market.
Howell Services delivers quality expertise on home plumbing in Sugar Land area and is proud to use UPONOR AquaPEX plumbing products. These superior piping products use cross-linked polyethylene that provides outstanding flexibility, durability, and reasonable costs.
Plumbing systems in disrepair can cause stress, damage your family’s health, and bring down the value of your home. IF you suspect problems in your plumbing system, call Howell Services, our family-owned company that has helped homeowners in Sugar Land for nearly two decades. Our bonded and insured plumbing professionals are qualified and experienced and are ready to help you today!
Call us to schedule your repair or comprehensive plumbing inspection; we even offer weekend appointments to work with your busy schedule.