Whether you have a bathroom with all new fixtures or one that has been lovingly maintained through the years, there are several common problems that arise from everyday use. As with any plumbing issue, some problems are merely an inconvenience, while others are catastrophic. Regardless the severity, New Westminster Plumbing is ready to solve your problem!
Things That Go Wrong with Toilets
As expected, the most likely culprit for bathroom woes is the toilet. With multiple working parts, there are several things that can go wrong with your toilet:
- Abnormal noise — if your toilet is exceptionally noisy when flushed, the likely problem is a damaged fill valve. Visual inspection will allow for a quick diagnosis of the problem. Replace the fill valve as indicated.
- Constant running — can waste up to 200 gallons of water in a 24 hour period! Chances are the flapper in the tank is defective and needs replaced.
- Stinky — aside from normal odors, if you notice strong sewage smell from your toilet, it could be as simple as insufficient water in the bowl. On the other hand, the problem could be a defective wax ring (at base of toilet) or a burst pipe. A full toilet inspection is necessary to determine and repair the problem.
- Clogged — indications of a clogged toilet are quite obvious: not flushing properly (or at all!) to overflowing poo water in your bathroom (or at least let’s hope it’s confined to the bathroom!) indicates a buildup of paper and/or other waste in the drain pipe. Attempt plunging the toilet; failing this, New Westminster Plumbing can diagnose and solve the problem 24/7.
- Incomplete flushing — is likely caused by incorrect positioning of the ball float (either too high or too low); adjust the ball float as indicated.
Things that Go Wrong With Showers
Depending on the complexity of your shower head, there really isn’t a whole lot that can go wrong with a shower. Although, it often seems that the shower malfunctions just when you need it most, you can likely remedy most issues:
1. Decreased flow or pressure — the most likely cause is that your shower head is clogged with mineral deposits. The best test is to remove the shower head, turn the water back on; if the flow is sufficient, the problem is definitely the shower head. A thorough cleaning is necessary. Soaking the shower head in vinegar will dissolve most mineral deposits. You can either fill a bowl with vinegar and soak while disconnected, or use a large plastic bag filled with vinegar, affixed to the shower head in place (use rubber bands or wire ties to hold bag in place). After soaking for at least 15-30 minutes, tap the shower head to remove any further debris not dissolved by the vinegar. Re-attach if necessary and test the water flow/pressure. If pressure/flow is still diminished, you should try disassembling the unit and cleaning the internals; otherwise, you may need to replace the shower head.
2. Water outside the shower pan — could indicate improper installation or worn parts. Check that water is staying inside the shower enclosure and not spraying from the shower head. If water is spraying outside from the shower head, see Step 1. A full inspection of your shower enclosure may be indicated if water continues to puddle outside the enclosure.
3. Temperature fluctuations — can be caused by clogged or broken supply lines. If you experience sudden bursts of cold water, the hot water shut-off valve could be closed or ‘swollen’ shut. Other potential issues are: pilot light out on gas fired boiler/water heater; damaged thermostat/thermocouple in water heater; sediment buildup in hot water tank.
Things That can go Wrong With Your Bathtub
1. Sewage odor — is often due to either a leaky trap or a dry trap. If the trap is dry, run the water with the drain open for at least 10 minutes to form the seal required to trap sewage odors. Should your bathtub drain still emit foul odors, chances are the sewage vent or trap is leaking — call New Westminster Plumbing for a full inspection/repair immediately!
2. Slow or no drainage — generally a clog has developed in the drain pipe from accumulated body fats, soap scum and hair. First try a combination of baking soda and vinegar to dissolve the clog. If necessary, use a chemical drain cleaner available at most discount and grocery stores. Should your bathtub still not drain properly, New Westminster Pluming can snake the drain and solve your problems!