Working With Incredible Plumbers

Where to Look to Prevent Major Plumbing Troubles

A small plumbing problem can turn into a big headache if it isn't caught in time. While you can't prevent every plumbing emergency, with close attention you can prevent some of them. The key is to know what you're looking for. Here are four tips that will help you locate identify small problems before they turn into big ones.

Look Out

When winter comes, cold weather can wreak havoc on your water pipes, especially the ones located outside. The water inside your water spigots can freeze and expand inside the pipes. When that happens, you can end up with ruptured water pipes and a big mess. When the weather is particularly cold, look outside at your water spigots.

Remove the hose from the spigot and look inside. If you see ice deposits, you'll need to insulate the water pipe to prevent freezing. It's also a good idea to turn the water on to a slight drip at night. This will allow the water to continue moving, which will reduce the chances of freezing.

Look Up

If you're not a trained plumber, you won't necessarily know what you're looking for, but you will know when something doesn't look right. Go in the garage and the attic, and look up at the water pipes. If you see signs of bulging, rust, or water condensation, you've got a plumbing problem. Those are all signs that your pipes are wearing out and will need replacing.

Look Down

Your water heater won't give you much warning when it's about to break down. However, in most cases it will give you enough advance warning to get help before it bursts. That's particularly true if you know what to look out for. Go out and look down at your water heater. Pay close attention to the area under the tank and the area around the release valve.

If you see a puddle of water under the tank, or you notice drops of water near the release valve, you might need a new water heater. This is particularly true if you're water heater is also making a popping noise. The popping is caused by lime deposits in the tank that are breaking lose and hitting the sides of the glass enclosure inside the tank.

Look Inside

If you're like most people, you only look under your kitchen sink when you're gathering cleaning supplies. Unfortunately, that can leave small leaks virtually undetected until the problem gets out of control. To catch leaks while they're small, look under your sinks once a month. If you see small wet patches, or smell mold, you should call your plumber.

Plumbing emergencies are no laughing matter. To help keep small problems from turning into plumbing nightmares, use the simple tips provided here. Be sure to contact your plumber if you discover any of the problems described above. For more information, visit sites like