3 signs you might need to call a plumber

3 signs you might need to call a plumber | H is for Home

As a home-owner, you’ll sometimes be faced with repairs and other home improvement projects. While many of these fixes can be done without the help of a professional, some problems require expert knowledge. Plumbing is one area that often requires a professional and trying to fix plumbing issues on your own can turn into an even bigger problem.

Today, we’re going to learn a few signs that just might indicate that you need to call a plumber for backup.

Soldering a water pipe

You have a slight leak in your pipes

If you notice a small leak in one of your water pipes, you may think it’s no big deal. However, small leaks can turn into serious flooding in a matter of seconds. Small leaks can also be an indication that your water system needs a major overhaul. If you notice leaking pipes, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Calling a professional plumbing service like Reckon Plumbing for those of you who are based in Los Angeles will ensure that your small leak is fixed before it’s too late. Water damage is a serious issue that could end up costing thousands. Get those leaks fixed so that your biggest investment is protected.

Shower head

You keep running out of hot water

When you take a shower, do you notice the hot water runs out before you’re finished? This could be a sign that your boiler isn’t working properly. In more serious situations, it could mean that your water heater is about to fail and should be replaced. But, only a qualified plumber can determine the condition of your boiler.

In some cases, boilers can be repaired. However, if your unit is more than 10 years old, you may want to think about having it replaced. If you do need to install a new boiler, you should allow a certified plumber to do the job. Boilers can cause house fires if they’re not installed properly.

Damp basement

Your basement always seems damp

If your basement is always damp or you notice water seeping from the walls, you should call a plumber. This could be a sign of a leaking water pipe or drain line that is hidden underground. While you can take measures to get rid of the moisture by installing dehumidifiers, you should have the problem checked out by a plumber.

As we’ve learned above, water damage is a serious issue that could cause many different types of problems. The worst issue you may face is a mould infestation. When there is moisture present in your basement, it will often attract dangerous mould. Once mould has taken over your basement, it can make your family sick and cost you thousands of dollars to remove. To play it safe, call a plumber as soon as you notice moisture in your basement.

These are just a few signs that it might be time to contact a plumber. Remember, there are many jobs that only a certified plumber can handle. They have the knowledge and tools to do these jobs properly, so when in doubt, always give them a call.


Working out the layout of your bathroom

Vintage-decorated bathroomcredit

If you’re planning to revamp your bathroom, it’s a good opportunity for you to consider reconfiguring the space. Doing so could help you to make more of the room, save you money and add value to your home.

Here’s a guide to help you to choose the right layout:

Compact bathroom with marble-clad walls


Your primary consideration should always be functionality. There’s no point in spending a fortune on a new bathroom suite, only to discover that your shower cabinet is so small that you end up banging into the taps while showering and being blasted with water that’s too hot or too cold. Therefore, thinking about the practicality of each item of the suite is a vital step in the design process.

Compact bathroom with corner shower cubicle

Fill the space

You need to make the most of the often limited space you have. That could mean fitting things like your shower into the corner of your room. You’ll want to avoid expanses of space being left unused.

For example, a 7-inch gap between your bath and bathroom cabinet is just wasted space. Potentially, a better option would be to choose a cupboard that fits flush with the end of the bath. That way, those 7 inches becomes usable space. You can find a fantastic selection of bathroom cabinets on www.betterbathrooms.com. The fact they sell such a wide range in so many different sizes means none of your precious space needs to be wasted.

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The right size suite

It’s especially important to buy the right size suite for your home. As well as making sure that everything is big enough or small enough for family members to use. If everyone in the family is tall, you’ll want to avoid compact suites which will be too impractical and uncomfortable to use.

Compact loft bathroom

Make your bathroom appear bigger

If you have a small bathroom, chances are you’ll want it to look as big as possible. You can do this by using a few clever decorating tips. For example, adding a large mirror to the far wall to draw the eye, as well as one above the sink, or using light colours instead of dark tones to finish the walls and floor give the impression of space.

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Factor in the extra cost of your new layout

If you’re planning to move key elements such as your bath, shower, toilet or sink, it’s important to factor in the additional cost of moving the pipe work. It’s usually wise to employ a plumber to carry out this work. They’ll give you a quote and confirm that the bathroom suite you’re planning to fit will work with the layout of your pipework. There’s no point in buying a new bathroom suite because you like its shape or design, if you’re going to have to spend too much money to have the soil pipe moved.

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Where to find layout ideas

If you need more information, this page is just what you need. There you will find several bathroom layout plans that you can use to help get your bathroom redesign started.


Dealing with blocked drains

Dealing with blocked drains | H is for Homecredit

Some blocked drains are instantly fixable with a drain unblocker, but when the problem becomes persistent, it’s time to look at other avenues to help you. Like most other Sydney plumbers, Plumbing Detectives are on call 24 hours a day 7 days a week to help you with issues such as this one.

How do I know if I have a block?

There are a few signs to tell you that you have a blockage somewhere, including:

  • It’s difficult to flush your toilet, and it takes ages to refill.
  • Your sinks or bath empty very slowly.
  • There’s a bad smell coming from your drains.

If you spot any of these signs, then chances are you have a block and you need to look into it.

So what causes these blocks?

The Australian continent is divided into drainage divisions which are then sub-divided into water regions, and then river basins. There are currently 245 basins, 77 regions, and 12 divisions. To find out more about where you are in this, check out the Geoscience Australia website. However, wherever you live there are many reasons that your drain could become blocked, including:

  • The pipes you have are too narrow, and need replacing.
  • Your home is located near a sharp 90 degree bend – this is where a lot of main line blocking occurs.
  • Something is stuck in the P Trap or J Bend. The most common items that cause this are cooking leftovers such as oil, wipes, and sanitary items. Throw these away, don’t flush them out!

Can I fix this myself?

Den Garden has provided a possible quick fix to help you:

  • Try to remove the blockage with a tool.
  • Use a plunger to force the blockage down.
  • Clean out the pipes underneath the sink.
  • Pour in boiling hot water or enzymes.
  • Use a chemical cleaner.

But of course, this is only for a one time problem. If it keeps on persisting, then your main line is likely the issue, and that will need to be looked at by a professional.

Can I prevent blocks?

There are a few things you can do to help yourself – after all, prevention is quicker, cheaper, and more effective than a cure. Here are some tips to help you:

  • If in doubt, bin it – if you’re worried that something might block up your drains, throw it out instead. For example, toss cooking oil out once it has cooled.
  • Never flush medicines or tablets – always dispose of them properly, at a medical facility or health authority.
  • Get rid of chemicals and solvents at your local recycling site.
  • Always scrape the food off your plate before using the dishwasher.
  • Even wipes that state that they are flushable or biodegradable, aren’t. Throw them away!

By avoiding a blockage, you could end up saving yourself a lot of money per year – just check out the Yuck campaign for more information.


Boxing in pipes: How to remedy ugly plumbing

'Boxing in pipes: How to remedy ugly plumbing' blog post banner

Minimalist rectangular glass gas firecredit

No two ways about it, exposed pipes and plumbing gubbins are just plain ugly. The bathroom, cloakroom and kitchen will probably be the worst affected rooms, but it’s a potential eyesore in all areas of the house with radiators, boilers, sinks, loo’s, stoves & fires all requiring connection to services.

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Boxing it all in is a neat and cost effective solution with numerous advantages. The first and most obvious plus side is the cosmetic improvement to a space – clean, neat lines replacing the chaos that lies behind; Boxing in also has an obvious safety element – protecting the exposed gas and water pipes; and best of all, it can provide valuable shelving and storage spaces.

storage cupboard containing boxed in boilercredit

The boiler is a large area to box in – so add shelves and cupboard doors to provide the perfect home for linen & laundry; under-sink areas in the kitchen can be transformed into cleaning product stores… and bathroom pipe boxing can provide useful shelving for lotions and potions. With a bit of care & creativity, the actual reason for the boxing in becomes almost secondary!

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Wallpaper the boxing in or paint it the same colour as the wall to blend in and make it unobtrusive. No knobs or handles need spoil the look or get in the way either – use push latch or magnetic mechanisms to make everything neat & flush. You can completely disguise where possible too – for example, if it’s low level and only narrow, the boxing can actually be made to look like skirting boards.

Radiatior being boxed incredit

You can get the professionals in – or perhaps take it on as a DIY project. If you’re boxing in pipes yourself but aren’t confident with your carpentry skills try ready-made uPVC pipe covers. Companies such as Screw Fix or B&Q will have everything else you’ll need.

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Just remember a few basic points: Use waterproof materials where appropriate – ceramic tiles, uPVC glue, silicon sealant and so on; ensure there’s some kind of access to stopcocks or important pipe joints; and allow appropriate spacing & ventilation as required.

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Let your imagination flow and follow a few simple rules to achieve fabulous results – those ugly pipes will be a thing of the past!