When was the last time you had to call the plumber? Plumbing is one of those things that residents can often tackle on their own. Need to tighten a fixture or clear a drain trap? These are things that many capable people wielding a wrench, and a how-to guide can tackle. It’s a proud moment to repair your own sink or toilet without having to call the plumber. Some people are handy enough to replace accessible systems like the toilet tank assembly or the dishwasher drain hose. But it’s also important to know when situations have gone beyond DIY, and it’s time to call a plumber.
1) You’re About to Use Duct-Tape to Fix Plumbing
The number-one rule of “time to call a plumber” is when you bust out the duct-tape. A home’s plumbing is made up of many pieces that fit perfectly together into a water-tight seal. Any time a piece is damaged or removed, a new piece should go in its place to complete the system. If you’re fixing with duct-tape, then it’s really time to install a new part. Possibly a whole new assembly.
Duct tape is a great stop-gap measure. It can briefly stem the tide of a leak and hold cracked pipes together, but it’s not a long-term solution and will eventually create more trouble than it was worth. So go ahead and strap your plumbing together with duct-tape at first. That should hold it until the plumber arrives with the replacement parts you need.
2) You’re Not Sure How the Pieces Go Back Together
One situation that many DIY plumbers find themselves in is the puzzle-dilemma. You’ve taken apart the underside of your sink, for example, but now that the clog is cleared or the broken part is replaced, you’re not sure how it all goes back together. Plumbing can be complicated, and not everyone’s plumbing is installed the same way, so online diagrams are only sometimes helpful. If you find yourself in this situation, call the plumber. A professional plumber will be able to make sense of the pieces and re-assemble your plumbing quickly. They may even have a few answers as to why your task was more confusing than you predicted.
3) The Pipes Under Your Cabinet Look Lovecraftian
Let’s say you open up your cabinet and look under the sink to find a situation that is beyond understanding. The pipes loop around each other or, worse, you see nothing but coiled snaky flexible pipes that don’t clearly begin or end. Believe it or not, this situation is quite common with houses that have already been DIY’d a few times. If the previous resident or owner of your home got funky with the accessible plumbing, you don’t have to untangle the mess on your own. Call a plumber to replace the whole medusa tangle with a system that works.
4) Your Pipes are Too Corrosion-Fused to DIY
Maybe everything is exactly where you expect to find it, but your wrench-twists lend zero give. This happens most often when two plumbing fixtures have fused together with water-corrosion over time. The valve behind the toilet, under a leaky sink, and outdoor fixtures are where you are most likely to find corrosion-fused fixtures. In these situations, the pipes are too damaged and stuck to safely DIY, even if you have the skills, tools, and knowledge to tackle most home plumbing problems. A professional plumber knows where the right water shut-off is and the right techniques to replace your corroded pipes with new functional fixtures.
5) The Leak Just Won’t Stop
Finally, sometimes plumbing problems go beyond reasonable understanding. Leaks are notorious for defeating even the most determined DIY repairman. If you find a leak and can’t make it stop, this is a sign that there is a deeper problem. If tightening the gasket, sealing the connection, and replacing the part doesn’t work, consult with a professional plumber who will trace the leak back to its source. Your plumber can help you stop a leak no matter how stubborn or elusive the source might be.
Have your plumbing problems gone beyond your DIY capabilities? We have you covered. Contact Aladdin Plumbing today for when it’s time to call the plumber.