When It’s Time to Call a Plumber
There are lots of things a homeowner can take care of in their house, both to maintain it for use and value as well as repair things when they break. However, two areas are highly recommended to lean on professional help when they need to be checked or fixed: electrical and plumbing.
Both require a high level of mechanical skill, system knowledge about how they work, and experience in dealing with different variations of problems. This is where the do-it-yourself or DIY approach can get into a lot of trouble.
While the method of fixing something might seem clear or simple, without experience there is room for a lot of mistakes. Plumbing definitely has those traps as people who have ended up creating big messes learned the hard way.
Why Plumbing is Such a Pain
The difficulty in plumbing stems from the fact that the feed lines, whether gas or water, are under pressure. That means, if opened, a lot of the content can come out very quickly. With gas, obviously, the danger of explosion is high.
With water, the risk of water and moisture damage can spread incredibly fast. For example, a simple laundry machine drain accident on a second floor can damage three rooms, two floors, and as much as $25,000 in damage and mitigation.
That’s one laundry machine’s worth of water. So, without experience, people can end up missing critical steps, leaving leaks that will burst, or create new breaks in lines under pressure. Again, hiring professional help for electrical or plumbing is really a very smart idea.
Not every plumbing task is incredibly risky either. Garden irrigation can definitely be done by a homeowner after a few lessons on how to work with PVC. Replacing a sink faucet or a toilet are also very doable once a homeowner knows where the feed hose is, how to operate it, and how do to the part replacement. Water heaters and in-wall pipe repairs, however, are another matter entirely.
Aside from Difficulty, Why Hire a Plumber?
First off, a professional and licensed plumber comes with service insurance, i.e. bonding. This means, if the plumber makes a mistake, he and his company are responsible for the repair and the bond they have to secure provides the funding to pay for such repairs. That’s a big protection for the homeowner.
Second, a licensed plumber comes to the job with experience. He or she can look at the situation and know what sort of difficulties are going to be involved because of previous work. A homeowner who touches a plumbing issue maybe once every three years usually won’t be prepared for a new difficulty or how to fix it correctly.
Third, a plumber doesn’t just focus on the repair at hand; he or she may notice other issues that need attention just by being present and knowing what to look for. This kind of awareness might be misinterpreted by a homeowner as trying to up-sell but, in reality, catching issues before they happen is a lot less expensive than repairing a home after the fact.
Prevention Experts Too
Professional plumbing services are also a great resource for maintenance checks, not just repairs. Owning a home is a big responsibility, so having annual checks on critical systems can find problems before they turn into personal disasters.
The highest risk involves a slow leak behind a wall where it can’t be seen. A/C units and heater condenser drain lines can also be a hidden problem in the attic. Water heaters after 10 years of age also represent a big risk for catastrophic failure, especially given they involve both gas and water feeds.
There are multiple examples where a plumber’s annual check can avoid home repair nightmares quickly and at a low cost by simply having him or her do a thorough check on the house’s plumbing systems.
So, while there is a lot a homeowner can do hands-on, save the hard stuff for a licensed plumber. It’s really worth it for your home.