Tips for Troubleshooting Home Plumbing

Home plumbing is bound to fail you at some point in the future. Problems related to plumbing can occur as a result of human intervention as well as simple wear and tear over time with prolonged use. Troubleshooting plumbing problems is going to be inextricably intertwined with the specific fixture involved.

Faucet Plumbing Problems

Check to make sure that the washer is not worn or damaged if the faucet is dripping from its spout. Check for worn O-rings or a loose packing nut if you have a compression faucet that is leaking from its lone handle.

Tighten the locknuts beneath the faucet set if you notice water beneath the sink. Inspect the putty or gasket if the locknuts are already tight and replace if the putty has dried and hardened or the gasket is worn.

Clean the aerator if the flow from the spout is blocked. The cause of this plumbing problem is almost always a blockage in the aerator.

Replace the O-ring on the diverter valve if the spray hose is leaking. If the O-ring is in fine condition, check that the diverter valve has not become bent and replace if it has. Replace the washer at the base of the sprayer’s head if the O-ring and diverter valve are not the problem.

Toilet Plumbing Problems

Prepare to use either a plunger or auger if your toilet is overflowing as it is a sign of blockage in the drain pipe. You should use a plunger to deal with obstructions created by fecal material or toilet paper. Use the auger to deal with an object that would not normally be flushed down a toilet.

Check that the water supply is turned on if the toilet does not flush. Either tighten or replace a loose or broken toilet handle if this is the reason your toilet suddenly refuses to flush and the water is turned on. Replace the ball cock mechanism if the toilet’s lack of flushing is not due to lack of water or a broken handle.

Tighten the nuts or replace the washers if you notice water collecting beneath the toilet. Check that the gasket isn’t worn as this could cause water to spray from either the refill tube or the ball cock and result in water beneath the toilet.

Adjust the float arm or water-intake assembly if you notice the amount of water that refills the toilet bowl is less or more than it always has been. If the float arm is not the problem, adjust the ball cock. Replace the ball cock if it cannot be adjusted to allow the proper amount of water to fill the toilet bowl.

Inspect the toilet seat bolts for signs of corrosion if the seat has become loose. Check that the seat itself has not cracked. Tighten the bolts holding the seat down if those bolts have become loose. Replace corroded bolts with new ones. Replace the seat if it has become cracked.