9 Common Plumbing Emergencies in Sydney Households

In order to learn how to respond to any plumbing emergency in Sydney, you need to know how plumbing emergencies look like.

Regardless, you should always call a professional plumber in case you notice water damage but you can’t really tell the source of the leak or you face a problem that you’re not sure about how to fix it.

woman calling an emergency plumber in sydney

As we discuss some examples of the most common plumbing emergencies, remember that every situation has its own level of severity.

Here’re the most prevalent plumbing issues that require emergency Sydney plumber services:

  1. Dripping Faucets

It’s quite annoying to have a leaking faucet, especially when it makes consistent, noisy drips at night when you’re trying to catch some sleep.

While faucet drips are minor and not an immediate emergency, they require fixing soonest possible to prevent further water loss.

However, you can turn a small faucet leak into a major leak by trying to force the valve shut with a wrench. You should only tighten the valve with your hands in case the faucet is dripping. Forcing it shut with a wrench can easily break the valve.

If you’re unable to stop a dripping faucet by tightening the valve with your hand, then shut off your home’s main water supply at the valve near the water meter.

Once you’ve turned off the water, check the condition of the faucet. If you know more about the inner workings of a faucet, then you can open it up and do the necessary repairs.

In case it’s damaged beyond repair, then replace it with a new faucet. If you don’t know how to repair or replace a faucet, call your plumber to come and fix it rather than worsening the problem.

  1. Leaking Pipes

In most cases, leaking pipes require fixing by a professional. The first thing you should do upon noticing a leaking supply pipe is to shut off your entire home’s water supply and call an emergency plumber in Sydney.

Also, check for any other damages on your plumbing system as you wait for the plumber to arrive.

Although there’re several DIY fixes available online for dealing with leaking pipes, such fixes can lead to more serious problems and even cause damages to your property.

Homemade patches may cause a leak to widen and lead to more water loss and possible flooding. Besides, homemade patches are temporary and will only delay professional repair that you’ll eventually need.

Thus, the best thing to do in the vent of pipe leaks is shutting off the water supply and allowing a professional Sydney plumber to fix the problem once and for all.

  1. Frozen Pipes

Plumbers get several calls from homeowners during winter to fix plumbing issues resulting from the cold weather.

One of the main plumbing issues that occur during winter is the problem of frozen pipes. In case a supply pipe is frozen, look at it more closely.

Check whether there’re any burst pipe sections or fittings that look pushed apart or broken. If you notice any damage, call your plumber immediately.

If you fail to see any damages, then start thawing the pipe with your hairdryer. Set it at low heat. Ensure you thaw the whole length of the pipe rather than just a small section.

Also, take caution when using the hairdryer. Avoid using the dryer near pooling water. Also, don’t use a flame over the pipe as it can damage the supply pipe or cause major leaks.

You can protect supply pipes from freezing by:

  • Opening the cabinets to allow warm air to reach the pipes
  • Disconnecting attachments like garden hoses
  • Keeping your home warm
  • Wrapping the pipes with an insulator
  1. Gas Leaks

While plumbers are not the first people most homeowners think about when having gas leak issues, they’re your savior during gas emergencies.

In case you notice the smell of gas in your home, shutoff the gas valve immediately and leave your house to safety.

Gas smells like rotten eggs, making it easy to notice when it leaks. It’s hazardous to stay in an area experiencing a gas leak. Gas is poisonous and can cause a huge fire.

Plumbers are specially trained to install and service gas lines. Thus, they know how to enter the affected premise safely, shutoff the gas valve, and look for the leak. Call an emergency plumber any time you notice gas leakage.

  1. Excessively Hot Water

Taking a warm shower feels refreshing. However, you risk getting burnt in case the water is excessively hot. If your sink or showerhead is emitting extremely hot water, then it’s likely that your water heater is faulty and is overheating.

If you’re faced with this problem, first, shut off your hot water unit. Turn on every hot water faucet to drain the hot water if it’s safe to do so. Once done, call a trusted plumber to come and inspect the water heating system.

  1. The Hot Water Unit is Leaking

A leaking hot water unit can cause major damages to the wall and floor, especially if the leakage is filling the drip pan quite quickly.

In case the drip pan is filling quickly, then it means the hot water unit is leaking. In this case, shutoff the supply line that feeds the unit with cold water.

You can locate the valve at the side or above the heater. If you’re unable to find the valve, shut off your entire home’s water supply at the meter.

Next, turn off your hot water unit. Here’s how to turn off an electric-powered or gas-powered water heater:

  • Electric-powered water heater– Find the circuit breaker connected to the hot water unit and turn it off from there.
  • Gas-powered water heater– In this case, shutoff the gas supply line. Most setups come with a valve located at the base of the hot water unit. The gas supply line is typically yellow, black, or stripped. The valve may be red in color and may have an arrow indicating the direction you’ll rotate it to shut it off.

If your hot water unit isn’t installed near a drainage, then you should drain the water with the help of a hose. Upon turning off the heater, connect a hose to its drain valve and direct the valve to a drain or large basin.

The hot water unit’s drain valve is typically located at the base of the heater. Open the valve and allow the hot water tank to drain.

If you feel uncomfortable with the situation or you don’t know how to handle the leak, call your plumber soonest possible to come and fix the problem. Besides, the plumber can give you some tips on how you can control any such situation in the future to protect your home.

  1. Toilet Problems

Toilet problems are some of the most prevalent plumbing issues. Toilets are prone to clogging, especially if you flush items that shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet.

In case your toilet is clogged, you can try to unclog it with a plunger. If plunging fails to unclog it, then you’ll need to call your local plumber to unclog it and prevent waste matter from backing up into your home.

Toilets are also prone to running. You can easily fix this problem. Simply open the toilet tank and check the condition of different components, especially the seal and flapper.

You can find toilet repair kits from your local hardware. If you’re unable to find a matching repair kit, or you don’t know how to fix the problem, then have a professional plumber fix the problem soonest possible to prevent further water wastage.

In case the toilet bowl is leaking around the base, it’s likely that the wax seal is worn out and needs replacement. The leak can also result from other plumbing issues.

Thus, when you notice water pools around the base of your toilet, and they reappear even after wiping them off, then you’re dealing with a leak. In this case, call your trusted plumber to fix the issue.

Remember to shutoff the toilet water supply before doing any repairs. You can find the valve behind the toilet tank or somewhere along the supply line feeding the toilet.

  1. Drain Clogs

Drains handle heavy usage every day. Consequently, they’re prone to clogging. If you notice that a certain drain is emptying slowly or it’s not draining at all, then you’re probably dealing with a clogged drain.

If the drain is emptying slowly, chances of unclogging it successfully by yourself are high. Try to plunge the drain repeatedly until it starts draining smoothly.

If plunging fails, try to use a chemical drain cleaner to clear the gunk clogging the drain pipe. However, ensure the chemical you want to use is ideal for use on the drain pipe.

If the drain is totally clogged, avoid pouring drain cleaners at first. What you should do is to plunge the drain and check whether it has started draining.

Then proceed to use the chemical drain cleaner to get rid of the rest of the clog. If these methods fail, then you need to contact a plumber.

In case a drain is backing up, call your Sydney plumber immediately. A backing up drain tells that you’re probably dealing with a major problem in the drain line.

  1. Sewer Smells

If you open a faucet and the water coming out has sewer smells, or the sewer smell appears to be emanating from a leakage, call your plumber immediately.

Sewer smells are a sign of a problem with the sump pump, septic system, or other drainage issues.

It’s quite hazardous to attempt fixing a sewer line or septic system by yourself. You might end up exposing yourself to health issues resulting from bacteria.

Also read: 8 Important Plumbing Tools Every Homeowner in Sydney Should Have