What to Do When Your Drain Starts to Gurgle

As a homeowner, you want to be aware of any problem that arises with your home in order to take care of it immediately. If not, it may turn into an even larger problem. So when you are using your kitchen or bathroom sink and hear a gurgling sound coming from the drain, should you panic? Should you ignore it? Is something wrong? Do you need to hire a drain cleaning service? There are several reasons for this issue, some requiring a professional plumber.

What Causes Your Drain To Gurgle?

That gurgling sound is actually air bubbles forcing their way up from inside your drain. When a clog forms down in your pipes, a pocket of air can form around the clog causing the trapped air to make its way up as water flows down from your sink.

There are also ventilation pipes that diverge from the water pipes and lead to the roof. These airways allow gasses from the sewer line to escape through the roof vents. But if those vents become clogged, usually with bird, rodent, and insect nesting materials and debris, the gasses are forced back down into the water lines and make their way up to your drain.

Lastly, the sewer line that leads from your home to the street can also become clogged. If this is not addressed promptly, major and costly damage can occur.

So when your sink starts to gurgle, something is definitely wrong and should be addressed sooner rather than later. A professional drain cleaning may be in order. Below are some steps to take to help you fix your drain and sewer pipes before more damage is done.

Step 1: Isolate The Cause Of The Gurgle

If the sink itself gurgles when in use, then it may be that the problem is limited to that particular sink and the vent or drain line that extends from it. However, if you notice the sound coming from the sink when you flush a toilet or drain the tub, perhaps even from another bathroom,  then that shows that the problem is with the main vent.

Step 2: Use A Snake Or Auger To Clear The Vent And Drain Pipe

If you have the tools and experience to tackle this job on your own, then feel free to work on it yourself. If you think the vent is blocked, then try hosing the vents up on the roof to clear any debris that has accumulated there. You can also use a sewer auger from the roof vent opening, pushing it all the way down to wherever the blockage has occurred.

If you think the clog is in your drain pipe, try removing the drain plate and using a snake to push through the clog. If you have a small drain along the outside of your home, you can also try inserting the snake there and pushing through the sewer line out to the street.

Step 3: Call A Professional

Please be advised that all of these options require the right tools, knowledge, and experience. If you are unsure of what you’re doing, it’s possible to make matters worse, causing extensive damage and perhaps even voiding your home warranty or insurance coverage. If you aren’t 100% ready to do the job correctly, then call a professional plumber for assistance. Mister Sewer has years of plumbing experience and is ready to help with all of your plumbing needs.  Call us today!

Detecting Water Leaks Anywhere in the Home

A water leak in your home can be quite costly.  In fact, a continuously running toilet can nearly double your water bill, and just a 1/8-inch leak in a fixture can waste as much as 114,000 gallons of water each month.  That adds up!  If you want to start saving money and avoid a startling surprise on your next utility bill, here are several ways that you can detect water leaks anywhere in your home.

Check Your Meter

Did you know that you can check for water leaks in your home using your water meter?  It’s a fairly simple procedure.  If you don’t know where your water meter is located, call the utility company and ask them.  Then, turn off anything using water in your home and check your meter.  Some meters have a leak detection indicator that will tell you if water is moving through the system.  Otherwise, take a meter reading, wait several hours (don’t use water during this time) and then read the meter again. If the numbers have gone up, you likely have a leak.

Toilet Leaks

Toilet leaks are common causes of water waste in the home, and they may be occurring without the tell-tale sound of “running” of water.  Toilet leak issues can be isolated to such things as flapper valve leaks, flush handle problems, or overflow tube leaks.  Some toilet leaks are simple to diagnose but don’t be afraid to enlist expert help by researching plumbing services in Pittsburgh.

Leaky Faucets

Leaky faucets are another frequent cause of wasted water in homes that can add up to boosted water bills.  A common problem that is found is due to worn rubber washers under handles or corroded plumbing fixtures.  Some of these fixes are simpler to diagnose and fix than others, and many require shutting off the water to repair.  Seek the help of professional plumbing services if you are unsure how to proceed.

Water Line Leaks

Water line leaks are the most serious kind of water leaks.  They are both more difficult to diagnose and to repair.  If you suspect that the problem may be within the walls of your home, under the home, or under your yard, don’t hesitate to call the a professional for assistance.

Finding the source of leaks in your home can save you a lot of money, both in the short and long-term.  Enlist the professional plumbing services of Mister Sewer to help out with all of your plumbing diagnosis and repair needs.  If you are searching for plumbers near Pittsburgh PA, we’d be happy to help. Contact us today!

Is Your Water Bill Too High?

Your water bill has been steady for months, or even years, and now has suddenly skyrocketed for no known reason.  This baffling occurrence often causes people to eye their neighbors suspiciously, yet high water bills are rarely the case of water theft.  Before you start interrogating the neighbors, here are just a few of the common causes of high water bills.

Changes in Water Use

Many changes in water bills can be attributed to subtle increases in water usage.  Have you recently had house guests that may have doubled or tripled the water use in your home for a period of time?  In the springtime, you might have begun watering lawns and flower beds again.  In the summer, perhaps you filled up the swimming pool or are running water-cooled air conditioners more frequently.

Faucet Leaks

Another common cause of higher water bills is toilet and faucet leaks.   In fact, a continuously running toilet can waste as much as 200 gallons a day of water.   This should be one of the first items you assess, and if are looking for a professional, our Pittsburg plumbing services would be happy to help.  Faucet leaks are another issue that can escalate water bills.  Check around plumbing fixtures for signs of dampness, mold, or deterioration.  You’ll also want to inspect your hot water heater for any possible leaks.  Plumbing experts agree that this could be both a source of leaks, as well as  an item that you’ll want to have regularly inspected.

Underground Leaks

Water leaks can occur in hidden and hard to reach places, such as underneath your home or yard.  To detect these issues, you’ll need to check crawl spaces, outdoor spigots, and attempt to identify unusual wet spots in your yard.  There are plumbers in Pittsburgh that specialize in this sort of water line inspection and repair, as this is specialized and not something that you’d want to try on your own.

Other Causes

Sometimes there are other, more obscure, causes for a spike in your water bill.  An old water meter may not work as well as a more modern version.  If you have exhausted all other measures and are questioning the validity of your readings, don’t be afraid to ask the water company to inspect their meter.

High water bills can be an accumulating problem, particularly if they are due to leaks.  It’s estimated that a dripping leak can consume 450 gallons of water per month, and just a 1/8-inch leak can consume over 114,000 gallons each month.  If your water bill has gone through the roof and you need some help diagnosing the problem, we’d be more than happy to come out help.  Give us a call at 412-835-2135 to schedule an appointment with one of Mister Sewer’s plumbing services experts.