Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Melbourne?
- 2 How Does the Water in Melbourne Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Melbourne?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Melbourne?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Melbourne vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Melbourne?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Melbourne?
There are specific plumbing problems that are common everywhere. Overflowing toilets, clogged sink drains, and dripping faucets are just a few of the plumbing problems we take care of regularly. But, some Melbourne homes are prone to additional plumbing problems that aren’t as common elsewhere. For example:
Dangerously Outdated Pipes
Melbourne’s homes often had lead-based plumbing pipes and copper pipes with lead solder installed before the federal ban on these dangerous materials in 1986. Despite the danger of lead poisoning, homes with lead pipes already installed didn’t have to be replaced right away. Over time, however, lead leaches into the drinking water, where it can cause serious health problems for you and your family. Young children and women of child-bearing age are at particular risk.
Another plumbing pipe problem that we frequently see in older homes in Melbourne is polybutylene pipe, or “poly.” This material was widely used from the mid-70s through the mid-90s when Melbourne homes were being constructed because it was cheap. Unfortunately, it’s also prone to failing, often without warning. Water can erode the inner surface of poly pipes out of sight. Eventually, the walls of the pipe get too thin, and a catastrophic break occurs.
Plumbing leaks that are easy to see, like a dripping faucet or showerhead, are pretty common. But, what many Melbourne homeowners don’t realize is that plumbing leaks are often out of sight. Most of your home’s plumbing is inside walls, floors, and ceilings and only the connections and fixtures are visible. In Florida, when leaks start happening inside enclosed places, mold and mildew begin to grow and spread quickly, especially since the humidity in the area is already at a high.
Hidden plumbing leaks are tough to find, but if you hear drips inside the walls, noticing damp areas on walls and ceilings, or you’re suddenly smelling the odor of mildew, a leak is likely the culprit. A higher-than-average water bill is also a subtle sign you have a leak hidden inside a wall.
Unprofessional Plumbing Repairs
We see all kinds of things when we get called to repair a plumbing problem in Melbourne. One of the most common is quick, do-it-yourself repairs made by people who aren’t licensed plumbers. Sometimes, homeowners attempt to make repairs on their own. Other times, they hire someone who works cheaply. One needs to be licensed to perform plumbing repairs and replacements.
Not only can hiring a non-licensed person for plumbing create future issues, but it can also cause immediate issues. For example, the manufacturer may void the warranty on your appliances if a licensed plumber like Mr. Blue Plumbing does not do the work. In addition, if you do not install plumbing properly or up to code, it can fail, causing severe damage. You may also face fines for code violations and other expenses.
How Does the Water in Melbourne Affect Your Plumbing?
Like the rest of Florida, the City of Melbourne gets its drinking water primarily from the Floridan Aquifer. This expansive natural aquifer spans over 100,000 square miles of the area under southern Alabama, southeastern Georgia, southern South Carolina, and the entire state of Florida. Because it’s a natural reservoir, its water is naturally high in minerals like calcium and magnesium.
The parts per million (ppm) concentration of minerals determine water hardness. The USGS considers water that contains more than 180 ppm of minerals very hard. Melbourne, and most of the Space Coast, has a water hardness level of at least 200. All those minerals can collect on the inside of water inlet pipes and fixtures, restricting water flow. Hard water deposits can also clog your water appliance lines, causing them to malfunction.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Melbourne?
We know that price is often one of the factors that homeowners consider when hiring a plumber. We also know it wouldn’t be fair for us to give you a price for plumbing without knowing what’s going on. Even a ballpark estimate can be way off if we haven’t done an inspection ourselves. But, what we can say is that our professional plumbing services in Melbourne typically cost between $120 and $860, with an average around $460. Some other things that will affect your plumbing bill include:
Cost Factor: Repair or Replace?
Leaking and dripping fixtures are more than an annoyance. They’re a sign your home’s hard water is causing problems. The suspended minerals and other corrosive inclusions in the water wear on the seals, causing them to fail. In most cases, the bill to have minor repairs done, such as fixing a dripping shower head by replacing the seals, will be lower than replacements. Depending on how long the problem has persisted, replacing a corroded fixture may be the only solution that makes sense.
Cost Factor: Difficult Access
We’re not afraid to crawl under your home via a crawl space access, nor are we concerned about squeezing into tight areas to get to a leak or other plumbing issue. But, these restrictive conditions can make it very difficult to safely and effectively make the necessary repairs. When plumbing problems are in floors and walls, we need to open up the space to access the plumbing. Due to the difficulty and dangers our plumbers face when dealing with restricted areas and hidden plumbing, we do charge a bit more.
Cost Factor: The Size of the Job
As you’d expect, if we’re going to repipe your entire home, it’s a bigger job than repairing a toilet, so the bill will reflect the amount of work. Your Melbourne home’s plumbing system isn’t confined to your home, though. You also have water inlet pipes and sewer lines that run underground across your property. We can make repairs to these essential components of your plumbing system, but we’ll need to bring along some special equipment and maybe a bit more help. All those things make outdoor plumbing more expensive.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Melbourne?
Your home’s plumbing system is essential to your family’s health, safety, and well-being. Regular inspections, annual maintenance, and timely repairs are crucial to avoid major plumbing problems. But, taking care of your plumbing can also save you money. Consider the fact that hard water deposits clog your washing machine and dishwasher lines, making it harder for them to work efficiently. Hard water also makes you use more detergents, soaps, and personal care products.
Leaking fixtures or pipes are not only annoying to listen to, but they’re also costly in the long run. A dripping faucet wastes as much as 5 gallons of water a day, and you’re paying the bill. Not only that, but all that moisture in the air is creating the ideal conditions for mold to grow. Fixing a small drip now will substantially lower the risk of mold and mildew, so you don’t have to worry about mold remediation or the health consequences of mold.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Melbourne vs Hire a Plumber?
That depends upon where the plumbing problem is. Anytime you’ve got an issue inside your residence, it’s your responsibility to have it repaired. Likewise, the City of Melbourne is only responsible for water mains and sewer pipes on their side of the meter. For example, if a water main bursts under the street in front of your home, it will be the City’s responsibility to fix it.
If you have water or sewage backing up into your yard, and you’re not sure whether the problem is on your side of the water meter or if it’s the City’s side, the best thing to do is contact the City of Melbourne Public Works and Utilities Department. They will send a crew over to assess the damage and determine if it’s originating from your property. They can assist you in determining where the problem is and what the appropriate course of action should be.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Melbourne?
Whenever you’re having plumbing repairs, replacements, or installations done in your Melbourne home, you’re obligated to follow the Florida State Building Code. One of the state building code requirements is that you need to obtain a permit whenever plumbing work is done, such as installing a water heater, relocating and replacing pipes and fixtures, repiping your home, or installing new plumbing.
Now, as a homeowner, you can undoubtedly change the fixtures on your bathroom or kitchen sinks without worrying about getting a permit. But, if you’re going to remodel the bathroom and move the sink to the other side of the room, you need a permit and a licensed plumber like us to do the work. We have experience with Florida’s building codes, and we understand how the permit and inspection process works in Melbourne. You can rest assured that, when we do work in your home, the permits are in place and that the finished work meets the high standards of the building code.