13 Summertime Plumbing Problems You Should Be Ready For

During the summer, most homeowners are on the lookout for issues with their HVAC system, but unfortunately, plumbing can cause just as many problems. To help, Jarboe’s Heating, Cooling & Plumbing has made this convenient guide to walk homeowners through common issues. If you run into these problems, don’t be afraid to call for assistance as soon as possible.

1. Clogged Shower and Tub Drains

Whether you love to garden or running is your thing, summer is a great time to get outside and get your hands (and body) a little dirty. To rinse away that grime, you may be ready to soak in a tub or take a cool shower at the end of the day. If you and your family are bringing in more grime, remember that shower and bathtub basin drains can clog fast. Over time, scale and debris can build up within the inside of drain lines or block them.

2. Toilet Blockages

Clogged toilets are a common concern for homeowners, especially during the busy summer months. When you are hosting a barbecue or focused on celebrating a birthday, the last thing you want to do is plunge a toilet. Family members and friends may unintentionally clog a toilet by using too much toilet paper or flushing hygiene products, so always keep a plunger and a wastebasket in the bathroom.

3. Garbage Disposal Clogs

Summertime is prized for delicious cookouts and family get-togethers. Whether you decide to host a barbecue or have everyone over for backyard s’mores, you may find yourself using your garbage disposal more frequently as cooking frequency increases. The more scraps you put down your garbage disposal, the more likely you are to experience a clog, which can also make it difficult to wash dishes and keep your kitchen sanitary.

4. Leaky Dishwashers

You count on your dishwasher to rinse away food particles and sanitize your dishes, but not to flood your home with dirty wastewater. If you overfill your dishwasher with items, the door may not be closed properly, which can interfere with the seal’s ability to keep water inside the appliance. Too many dishes loaded into your dishwasher can interfere with the float assembly inside the device, which can cause the system to overfill and flood into your home. Watch out for signs of a leaky dishwasher, because ignoring an appliance prone to drips could damage your flooring and subflooring.

5. Drippy Faucets

It’s never fun to deal with annoying recurrent noises in your home, especially in the middle of the night. Drippy faucets are famous for infuriating homeowners, and unfortunately, this relatable issue is particularly common during the summer months, when heavy at-home use can spell trouble for the moving parts inside plumbing fixtures. While leaks may appear slow-moving at first, they can quickly transform into full-fledged, fast perpetual drips that drive up your monthly water bill.

6. Washing Machine Hose Leaks or Clogs

Having children at home during the summer can cause an uptick in the amount of laundry you generate as a family, which can also put a strain on your washing machine. Washing machines can become damaged by items put through the device, such as baby socks, hair pins, guitar picks, or small children’s toys. Since many modern washing machines have built-in filters, blockages could cause your system to overflow with water.

Washing machines rely on supply hoses to bring clean water into the barrel. Over time, rubber supply hoses can become brittle and break open, allowing water to flood the area. Hoses should be replaced every 3-5 years, or as soon as the rubber starts to break down.

7. Flooded Basements

It’s never fun to deal with a flood, especially on an otherwise peaceful summer’s day. If a heavy rainstorm blows through your neck of the woods and your sump pump isn’t working, you could be faced with a great deal of damage inside your home.

8. Sewer Line Overflows

Anytime you flush a toilet, use a sink, or take a shower, wastewater exits your home through your municipal sewer lines. This wastewater is typically rich in organic nutrients, which can attract the attention of plant and tree roots, especially during hot, dry spells. Powerful tree roots can take hold around the pipe, infiltrate the tiniest hole or crack, and grow to fill the pipe interior.

Sewer clogs can cause slow household draining or even backups, creating sanitation hazards indoors. If you are thinking about driving vehicles or heavy equipment over your yard, you could also snap underground sewage lines, making it easy for dirt and debris to enter the broken segment and cause additional clogs. Slow drainage is often the first sign of sewer line trouble, so reach out to a professional plumber right away if you notice the issue.

9. Hose Bibb Damage

Your hose bibb is the outdoor spigot where your garden hose attaches to your house. If you notice leaks around your hose bibb, it could be a sign that there is internal damage from improper winterization or general use. If water is allowed to sit within a hose, it could freeze during the winter, expand, and damage fixture valves and the hose body itself.

10. Sprinkler Head Malfunction or Damage

During dry spells, sprinklers are essential to keep your garden green, lush, and living. Unfortunately, sprinkler heads are prone to damage anytime they are walked on or driven across, so check your sprinklers before the start of the hot, dry season. Look for physical damage, current leaks, and signs of internal clogs, such as a sprinkler that hasn’t popped back into place after the irrigation cycle has ended.

11. Irrigation Line Damage

Modern irrigation has paved the way for beautiful yards and gardens, even in the most desolate places. When you turn on your irrigation system, it’s important to look for signs of deeper problems, such as marshy landscaping or outdoor puddles. Sometimes, sprinklers that aren’t blown out and winterized can have water that freezes inside the system, which can harm the sides of the irrigation lines and cause leaks. Irrigation lines can also become damaged when tilling the soil, removing old bushes, or digging a hole to plant a new tree, so always watch for puddles that shouldn’t be there.

12. Poor Hot Water Supply

Both tank and tankless hot water heaters are put to good use during the summer months when people find themselves cleaning and showering more frequently. Tank water heaters have a limited hot water storage capacity, which may mean that not everyone in your household can enjoy a hot shower at the end of a long day. Unfortunately, while tankless water heaters are capable of generating a continuous stream of hot water, they do have availability limits and are rated based on the amount of hot water flow per hour they can produce simultaneously. Hot water outages can be resolved by upgrading your water heater equipment.

13. High Water Bills

You may be used to paying a water bill, but when your costs are higher than normal, you need to get to the bottom of the problem. Pricey monthly water bills could be tied to:

  • Main Water Line Damage
  • Adding Extra Water-Using Appliances to Your Home
  • More Frequent Showering or Bathing
  • Houseguests or Frequent Visitors
  • Watering Plants in and Around Your Home

Saving water starts with good daily habits, so it’s important to evaluate how you are using water and where you could save. It’s imperative to repair or replace damaged water-using appliances, faucets, or pipes, and to use as little water as possible when you can help it. In addition to saving money, you could also help to protect the environment.

Get Help With Your Plumbing! Call Jarboe’s Today

When plumbing problems abound, you need a team of professionals you can trust. Here at Jarboe’s Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, we are committed to helping homeowners to resolve their plumbing issues at the first sign of trouble.

Our team of licensed, certified plumbers will work hard to make your home a better place, regardless of when you come across problems. From leaks to clogs, we can get water moving in the right direction, so you can enjoy the best months of the year. Give us a call today to learn more.

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