Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Concord?
- 2 How Does the Water in Concord Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Concord?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Concord?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Concord vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Concord?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Concord?
Unfortunately, there are a lot of different things that can go wrong with the plumbing in our homes. When you think about the complexity of the pipes and how much we use them, this shouldn’t come as any surprise. Some more common issues include leaky pipes and faucets, clogged drains and toilets, running toilets, water heater problems, and low water pressure. Let’s take a bit more in-depth look into some common plumbing issues Concord homeowners face.
Have you ever tried to sleep while listening to a dripping faucet in your bathroom? The sound of the constant drip can be annoying. It isn’t, or shouldn’t be, normal and could be a larger problem than you think. Of course, it could just be that the faucet valve has broken, or that your faucet handle needs adjusting, but it could also mean that your water pressure is too high and needs a release. While it may not be an emergency, a leaky faucet, even if it may seem like a minor inconvenience, should not be ignored. Call the plumber and set up an appointment.
A Slow Drain
One slow drain usually is a problem within that single drainpipe, which if you cannot easily unclog yourself, may require a plumber’s assistance. More than one slow drain, clog, or backwash is another much more serious and complex issue. This generally means a blockage deep inside your plumbing system. You should call the plumber immediately.
Knocking Sound From Within the Pipes
If you hear knocking when you turn on the tub or shower, it could simply be a loose support strap. Or it could be a sign of high water pressure. Either way, if you hear your pipes knocking, call the plumber.
Low Water Pressure
If the pressure when you turn on your tap isn’t as strong as it used to be, it could be a fairly simple issue with the faucet itself. But it also could mean there is a leak, or a broken pipe, somewhere in your plumbing. It is yet another reason to call the plumber.
Extra Bright Spot of Grass
If you see an extra green area of grass, or grass that is growing faster than the rest of your lawn, that area is probably getting more water than the rest of your landscape. Chances are there is a leak underneath that area of lawn or a leaky sewer line. This is a sign to call your plumber, as soon as possible.
Brown, yellow, or reddish water could be a sign of rusty lead pipes. Blue or green water can come from the oxidation of copper pipes. Either way, this could be a sign that some of your older pipes need replacing. Do not drink discolored water and call the plumber immediately.
How Does the Water in Concord Affect Your Plumbing?
Much of California has hard water, and hard water is hard on pipes. Concord’s water, on the other hand, is not nearly as hard as much of the rest of the state. Our water measures at about 77-78 PPM (parts per million of mineral deposits in the water), which is considered just slightly hard and well within the desirable range.
This is not damaging on pipes like harder water, in the 300s PPM, can be. Concord’s water should not cause problems with Concord’s residential plumbing.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Concord?
Plumbing rates can vary from place to place and even with plumbers in the same area. They may have a minimal fee for their service call, and then an hourly rate for the work, once they find the source of a problem, and project how long the repair may take. And yet other plumbers may set a standard price for some routine services such as snaking out a sink drain or auguring out your main sewer line.
An average from pricing around the country suggests the cost of having plumbing work done can run from $175 to $450 or at $45 up to $200 per hour.
To predict an estimated cost, you need to look at what you need to have it done and how big a job it is. Consider access to the location. The cost of plumbing that is harder to get to, such as a pipe under the foundation of the house, is going to be higher than a more accessible pipe repair. Consider what type of materials may be needed for the repair. Will the plumber need more specialty tools than a standard wrench or snake? Take all these things into account when you ask for an estimate on the plumbing repairs you need.
The best way to save in plumbing situations is to call the plumber as soon as the need arises. Putting off the call for that leaky pipe could lead to a bigger and more expensive problem, later.
Prevent plumbing problems before they occur. Having an annual plumbing inspection is a good way to assure your plumbing stays in good working order. Your plumber may also suggest having your main sewer line cleaned out on an annual basis to prevent damaging build-up. Consider investing in water-saving devices such as low-flow showerheads, which you can receive free from the Contra Costa Water District.
Urgency of Repair
If you have a slow leaking faucet, it usually isn’t an emergency. You can schedule a plumbing appointment within regular workday hours. However, a leak in your water heater or a burst pipe is another matter, and you may need emergency service. That is why most plumbing services offer 24-hour, seven-day-a-week options.
Whether it is on a Sunday or 2 a.m., you need help fast and a reputable plumbing service should offer to come to your rescue. However, you can expect emergency services to cost more. After all, you may be taking someone away from a family get-together or getting them out of bed. There will be an emergency fee for their off-time service.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Concord?
There is no doubt that better plumbing and upgraded water heaters and fixtures can save you money on your water bills. Also, the Contra Costa Water District offers various rebate programs. Through its Save Our Water program you may even be able to double your rebate in some cases. Some Concord rebate programs include:
- Lawn to Garden offering up to $1,000 for replacing an older front lawn watering system with a water-wise landscape.
- Pool Cover Rebate offers $50 back on a qualified pool covering.
- Laundry to Landscape Greywater Rebate says to use your laundry water to irrigate your landscape and get a $50 rebate on a qualified system.
- Multi-family and Commercial Rebates are offered for flushometer toilets, commercial clothes waters, and irrigation equipment.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Concord vs Hire a Plumber?
If you are having plumbing problems, you most likely need to call the plumber and not the water district. However, if you have water quality issues or are looking for tips on how to conserve water and water costs, that is something your water district can help you with.
Reasons to call your plumber include, but are not limited to:
- A sudden reduction of water pressure
- Repairing a visual leak
- Replacing broken water fixtures
- Unclogging a drain
- Repairing a constantly running toilet
- Water heater problems
If you happen to see water spewing into the air from a Concord water main or broken fire hydrant, that is the time to call the Contra Costa Water District, so they can send out a repair crew. That number is 925-688-8374.
Changes in Your Water
The Contra Costa Water District is proud of the fact that it exceeds the drinking water standards of California and the federal government. However, if you see changes in your water such as taste and odor, color, or appearance, or see particles in the water, you can, and should call the Water Quality Hotline. Gather as much information as you can before you call, and be prepared to answer some questions like:
- Do your neighbors experience similar problems?
- How long have you experienced the problem?
- Where is the problem? In some, or all faucets inside?
- Does the issue involve cold water, hot water, or both?
- Is the issue there continuously?
- Have you also seen the problem from an outside hose bib?
If you or a family member is feeling ill, the district urges you to call your physician. About the water itself, call the Water Quality Hotline at 925-688-8156.
The Contra Costa Water District has a program called Water Wise House Call. The service is free and offered to all residential customers within the district. You will set up an appointment with a conservation technician who will come out to check your watering systems. Included will be suggestions on how to reduce or avoid high water bills. He or she can also explain to you how to read your meter, so you can keep track of your water usage.
If you prefer a phone consultation, this is also available to Contra Costa Water District customers. The representative will discuss your water usage and bills with you and explain how to landscape, and use indoor water more efficiently. The representative can also provide tips on avoiding high water bills.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Concord?
Most routine plumbing repairs do not require permits to fix or replace. But some more extensive types of repairs and installations do. Examples for which you do need a permit from Concord include:
- Water heater replacements and new installations
- New dishwasher installation if no air gap is existent
- New water softener installation if no air gap is existent
- New standpipe for a washing machine or water softener
- New sewer line
- New gas piping
- New garbage disposal if the plumbing is to be changed
Your professional plumber should know what issues require permitting and what not. He or she should also be able to take care of the permit process for you, although you will be responsible for any permit fees.