When we talk of a failing plumbing system, we mean everything from cracks, leaks to complete pipe burst. A faulty pipe may inflict tremendous damage to your ceilings and wall, like developing severe mold problems. Besides, when overlooked, it may lead to high water bills.
Pipe corrosion may appear earlier if you aren’t careful enough. The best way to protect your home from premature pipe replacement is to understand the everyday situations that may lead to early leaks. The following are the top causes of pipe failure to help you take the necessary action.
1. Poor Water Quality
It’s worth noting that even the highest quality pipes may fail when exposed to hard water. Mostly, the lines used to transport water at your home contains copper, aluminum, steel or iron materials. If the water supply at your residential area contains too many minerals, your pipes may corrode prematurely.
Mineral deposits remain at the pipe’s surface, and with time, they will begin to clog. If you leave them unchecked for a prolonged period, the water quality deteriorates and even blocks water passage. At this point, your plumber will have to replace the pipes entirely. However, having regular checkups prevents the minerals from settling inside the lines, saving you the replacement cost.
The water supply companies also add some sodium fluoride into the tanks to promote healthy teeth. With time, the water’s acidity begins to rise and adversely affect the metal barriers in the pipes. A plumber may decide to neutralize the water by using substances or filters. Besides, you may also choose to upgrade your pipes to high-quality concrete or plastic to avoid frequent premature repairs.
2. Excessive Water Pressure and Velocity
When water travels at a high velocity, it may lead to hammering. If not well secured, the lines may move around whenever you turn on or off the water. The back and forth movement gradually weakens the joints; eventually, the pipe connection may fail.
Most pipes and faucets can only withstand a specific water pressure level. If the pressure exceeds 80psi, it may lead to increased wear and tear, and water may begin to drip. Additionally, it may affect your water heater due to increased expansion and contraction rates. In extreme instances where the pipes can’t hold the pressure longer, it may lead to bursting.
To be safe, next time you have professional plumbers looking at your pipes, you can request that they check your water pressure. You can also use a pressure gauge, attach it to the sink spout and turn on the faucet. If it’s too high, the plumber may install a pressure-reducing valve to lower it into safe levels.
Low temperatures may also affect the water supply pipes in your home. During the colder seasons, water may freeze up inside the line; it expands while changing from a liquid to solid and causes high pressure. Since the building pressure will need to escape, the pipe may burst, especially in weak joints.
To avoid this, you can turn on the tap to allow for a steady and slow water movement in the cold season, preventing pressure buildup. Further, open the cabinet doors below the sink to allow warm air circulation around the pipes. You can also seek professional help to insulate the exposed pipe surfaces.
4. Lack of Proper Maintenance
Please note that the entire plumbing system is interconnected, and you need to promptly address any minor issues. For instance, if you have a drippy tap, it may cause problems in the toilet or other areas. If you ignore the small cases, they may strain the entire plumbing system. This could lead to worse issues.
Multiple leaks cause a reduction in water pressure that may affect the performance in your taps. If the faucets, toilets and other appliances can’t pull in enough water they need for normal functioning, it may lead to premature wear.
Please remember that maintenance is less expensive than total replacement or repair. By proactively servicing your plumbing system, you extend the life of all your fixtures, which prevents premature pipe replacement.
5. High Temperature
Hot water flow can also aggravate pipe corrosion. The heat contributes to rusting, and when the debris gets trapped in the pipe, it leads to blockage and restricted water flow. On the other hand, exposure to extreme sunlight may also lead to pipe erosion. Sun rays break down the metallic components in the pipe, and they end up becoming brittle with time.
To prevent this issue, ensure that your pipe seller stores them properly away from sun exposure before purchase. If you plan to use the pipes above the ground, it will be wise to apply some form of covering like paint. Regular inspection will also help detect the problem before your line fails. Your plumber may also suggest that you replace the pipes with some heat-friendly materials.
6. Installation Problems
If you fail to seek proper installation, chances are the plumbing system may fail even before their breaking point. While cutting, our plumbers ensure that they remove any debris that may result in blockage. They also maintain smooth outer edges that join and bond with other pipe parts smoothly.
If the pipe is not pushed into the filling, it may lead to contaminants’ accumulation, and your lines may fail. Therefore, it is essential to seek professional help to inspect your entire plumbing system and make adjustments where necessary.
When you fit your pipes underground, you also expose them to clogging problems from soil and debris. This results in increased friction, which may damage the pipes. It’s therefore essential that you remove this debris before installing your plumbing system.
Intruding tree roots can also lead to clogged lines. If you have trees growing near your house and you detect low water pressure or sinkholes in the yards, you may need to have a professional plumber check for intrusions. Note that serious clogs potentially increase the pipes’ pressure level, which can lead to overflowing or bursting.
8. Increased Usage
Higher usage is another common problem that may strain your plumbing system, leading to premature pipe replacement. A significant change in how you use the plumbing system may increase the risk of pipe failures. It may lead to slow drains, reduced water pressure and clogging. To prevent this, avoid using multiple fixtures and appliances simultaneously and regularly monitor your home drains.
Understanding the reasons of pipe failures will help you reach out to professionals quickly. Frequently inspect your plumbing system and look out for the common causes discussed above. If you notice an increase in water bills or a change in water pressure in your mid Atlantic home, you may need to contact a professional from HB McClure Company. We can detect and address piping problems from anywhere in your Harrisburg home, even those that affect hidden sections like the walls and floor.
We also offer other services like heating and cooling services, drain cleaning, sewer lines jetting, duct cleaning, backup generators, water conditioning systems, humidity control and bathroom remodeling. Contact us today and schedule an appointment to get your failing pipes back to working order.