When many people think about plumbing emergencies, they think about a situation that happens in the middle of the night. The truth is a plumbing emergency can happen at any hour of the day, even during the holidays. What makes a situation an emergency is not necessarily the time that happens but the level of inconvenience the situation brings to the homeowner or business. If a plumbing emergency is not addressed immediately, the problem will just get worse and become more expensive.

Clogged Drains

Addressing drain blockages promptly is crucial to avoid escalating issues that can lead to significant inconvenience and damage. A seemingly minor blockage can quickly turn into a major problem.

When a drain blockage prevents the toilet from flushing, it creates an unsanitary environment that poses health risks. Attempting to flush the toilet under these conditions can result in overflows, potentially flooding your home or business.

Deep-seated blockages in the sewer line can cause raw sewage to back up into your drains. This situation commonly occurs due to invasive tree roots or debris obstructing the sewer line. Such backups can be costly, damaging your basement and compromising the foundation of your property.

Unpleasant odors accompanying a clogged drain indicate a plumbing emergency. These odors may result from damage to the pipes, allowing sewer gas to escape through the drains. If homeowners are uncertain about the severity of a blockage, it’s advisable to err on the side of caution and seek assistance from plumbing professionals immediately.

Burst Pipes and Leaks

One of the most serious plumbing emergencies a homeowner or business owner can face is a burst pipe. If immediate action is not taken to prevent the water from leaking, there could be water damage issues like floor warping, wall or ceiling stains, and damaged furniture. A burst pipe can happen whether you’re dealing with a poorly done repair, an issue with a plumbing appliance, or normal wear and tear of the home’s pipe network.

One of the first steps homeowners can take if they notice a burst pipe is to try to shut off the valve to cut the water supply to that pipe. Allowing the water to overflow can cause significant damage in just a short amount of time. If there is not a valve that supplies water to the burst pipe, you may have to shut the main water valve to the whole property. The primary water valve is typically found in front of the house next to the water meter.

When the water supply has been shut off, it will be necessary to remove any water from inside the pipes. This can usually be done by flushing the toilet or allowing water to drip out of the faucets and showerheads. This would also include draining hot water from the water heater.

While, in certain cases, homeowners can take the above-mentioned actions to mitigate water damage, homeowners should avoid trying to repair or replace a burst pipe on their own. This is not a DIY job, but something that should be left to a qualified plumber. A licensed plumber will address the immediate issue and take steps to help you not have a similar issue in the future. They could inspect the entire piping network in the home to identify other weak points that could eventually burst. The thing about working with a licensed plumber is that they have insurance to cover any damage in the event that the repair job is not completed as it should be.

No Hot Water

Everyone takes hot water for granted until they turn on the shower and don’t have any. A lack of hot water is more than a minor inconvenience, especially in colder winter months. It often indicates a significant plumbing issue related to the water heater.

While homeowners might consider tackling maintenance and repair tasks themselves, hot water issues are unsuitable for DIY attempts. Water heaters are heavy-duty appliances filled with scalding water, posing a burn risk. Additionally, tampering with electricity or gas, the energy sources for water heaters can be dangerous for untrained individuals. Plumbing problems can swiftly escalate from minor leaks to major property damage if neglected or mishandled.

At Southport Home Services, our licensed team of professionals specializes in addressing water heater issues. We’re ready to assist you in resolving the problem promptly and restoring your hot water supply.

A Failed Sump Pump

Anyone who has ever had to deal with a flooded basement knows how devastating this can be. The water damage and the cleanup afterward can be difficult and expensive. The primary purpose of the sump pump is to keep water from flooding some ground structures like crawlspaces and basements. Regular sump pump maintenance ensures that the system works as it should. However, there are many reasons why a sump pump can fail. Some of them are preventable, and some of them are not. For example, an overworked or incorrectly sized sump pump will eventually fail. There could be an issue with the on and off switch or the float switch. A new sump pump might fail because of defects from the manufacturer.

Water Leaks

Not all water leaks constitute a plumbing emergency. However, if you see signs of a large leak, call an emergency plumber immediately. Water leaks can weaken the integrity of your home. Some leaks are silent because you don’t notice them until they’ve damaged your home. If leaks go untreated, they can result in serious health issues, including mold and mildew growth. Leaking water can be a fire hazard if it comes in contact with electrical wiring.

What Is Not a Plumbing Emergency

As mentioned at the outset, if it’s an emergency to the customer, it is an emergency to us at Southport Home Services. That said, calling plumbers outside their normal business hours can be more expensive. Certain things, like a dripping faucet, can typically wait until normal business hours. Slow drainage, while it will require the services of a plumber, is typically not an emergency that cannot wait until the next business day.

If you encounter a plumbing emergency, stay home and stay on top of things. Contact an emergency plumber, and let us get to the root of the issue so you can get back to living comfortably.

At Southport Home Services, we have served Madison and the surrounding areas since 2005 and have ensured that our neighbors’ plumbing, heating, and cooling systems work as they should. We are home to NATE-certified HVAC professionals. We are an A+ Better Business Bureau accredited business and have won several awards for the quality of our services.

Our services include HVAC installation, maintenance, and repair. We offer water heating services, water treatment, and drain and sewer cleaning. We are available for emergency services, do sump pump installation repair and bathroom remodels, and work in both commercial and residential environments. Contact Southport Home Services today and see for yourself our commitment to making sure that your home is a haven.

Meet the Author
Thomas Suchla
Thomas Suchla


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