5 Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Plumbing
If your home is two or more decades old, the existing plumbing system may need replacement. And if it was built before 2000, it definitely needs an immediate inspection and replacement. Cast iron pipes used in the 1970s had a long lifespan. But they wear out over time due to extreme weather changes, rust, and plant roots.
According to a Water Infrastructure and Sustainability fact sheet by the EPA, most homes with broken water are 47 years old. That means most homes today are at the tail end of their life expectancy. The problem majorly affects sewer lines and plumbing fixtures from the kitchen and bathroom. These pipes are more prone to corrosion than ordinary pipes carrying drinking water.
Unfortunately, you can live with your plumbing for years without noticing an issue because the pipes are hidden behind walls or buried underground. However, there are a number of signs you need to look out for.
Do you ever open the tap to a sight of discolored water? In most cases, yellowish or brownish water is a sign of damaged cast iron pipes.
Cast iron pipes are the most vulnerable to rust and corrosion. If your house is more than 15 years old and you start seeing colored water, check your piping.
Leaks And Mold
A single leak is not a danger sign but when you often have leaking pipes, you need to be worried. Small leaks can be caused by small cracks on the pipes or damages as a result of corrosion. If pipes leak after cleaning, you should consider having a plumber check them out.
Most leaks are visible but in hidden behind walls. You might notice a wet wall or mold growing on a section of the wall. Mold starts growing with as low as 55 percent humidity and this is a sign that your pipe has a leak. If these leaks are not corrected in time, they can compromise the integrity of a building and adversely affect your health.
Slow Draining, Odors, And Puddles Of Water
Backups and slow drainage are common but they should not be frequent. If you frequently experience these, you should consider having the pipes checked out. It could be a sign that the cast iron pipes are blocked. A plumber should help you determine whether the pipes need cleaning or replacement.
Bad odor can also be a sign that your pipes are damaged and the sewer does not flow as it should. When the pipes are broken, they let out sewer gas which leads to the foul smell. Besides, the cracks on the pipes might cause sewage water to escape and form puddles of water in your yard. Even if the puddles are from clean water pipes, you still need to get the pipes checked. And always get your drainage supplies from trusted dealers, like the one mentioned here.
Visible Cracks, Sagging, And Indentation
Cracks on your foundation or on sections of your walls indicate your plumbing need replacement. Cracks normally occur when there is an undetected leak in the main line. If left repaired, it may lead to the appearance of sinkholes which are dangerous for your building.
When the sewer or water lines crack and leak, you may see water pools underneath your yard or your pavement. With time, the water will dissipate soil particles and cause the ground to sag. While the sagging may be minimal and difficult to spot, it is a sign that your plumbing is not in perfect shape.
Outdated And Defective Parts
If your house is 30 or more years old, you don’t have to wait for signs to replace your plumbing. The age of the house should be reason enough to replace your plumbing system.
Bathroom showerheads, water closets, and sinks take a toll from daily use. With older hardware, your bathroom will look dated. Older hardware not only makes your bathroom and kitchen look dated but can also be dangerous, especially if metallic pipes chip off and find their way into water streams.
Some signs are indirect clues that your piping needs a change. For instance, if a section of your lawn is very healthy and different from other sections, it might be a sign that there is a leak underneath.
If there are more insects, cockroaches and sewer flies, than there was, it can be an indication that there are cracks on your pipes. These insects can get through small cracks and crawl into your house through your drain pipes. Your underground drainage water and sewage pipes are more vulnerable to cracks and leaks and as such, you should keep an open eye on the above signs.
You don’t have to wait until it is too late to repair or replace your plumbing as that would be extremely costly. These tips can help you identify these issues on time.