Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Pensacola?
- 2 How Does the Water in Pensacola Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Pensacola?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Pensacola?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Pensacola Vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Pensacola?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Pensacola?
Pensacola is located in the far western portion of the Florida Panhandle, in Escambia County. The city’s white sandy beaches and open-air restaurants make it a hot tourist destination. We consider ourselves lucky to call this breezy coastal city home. Pensacola’s nearly 53,000 residents enjoy some of the shortest commute times in the country, as well as over 200 sunny days each year. But no matter where you live, plumbing issues are a fact of life.
Plumbers in Pensacola get a lot of questions about what we like to call the pink in the sink. People call us, worried that something is wrong with their water because their bathtubs, toilets, and sinks are stained pink or red. If that happens in your home, you can relax because there’s nothing wrong with your water. The pink that you see is actually a common bacteria called Serratia marcescens. This bacteria loves water and humidity, so it’s no surprise that it hangs out in Pensacola bathrooms and kitchens. Regular cleaning with either a bleach-based cleaner or vinegar and water solution will prevent it from building up. You should also wipe down your sinks and bathtubs after each use to prevent standing water. Toilets that aren’t used frequently should still be flushed regularly.
While pink bacteria are relatively harmless, the severe weather here is not. Tropical storms and hurricanes can really do a number on the municipal water main lines. If you’ve lived in Pensacola for any number of years, you know that water outages are simply a fact of life. As residential plumbers, we feel your pain, but we all have to be patient while the main lines are being repaired. Always have bottled water stored for emergencies so you won’t be caught off guard or left scrambling for potable water at the last minute. A good guideline for emergency water storage is at least one gallon of water per person, per day. If you have pets, you’ll need to have water set aside for them, too.
Another plumbing issue that is related to water outages and inclement weather is boil water notices. The Emerald Coast Utilities Authority (ECUA) posts these notices online. Boil water notices are also announced on the news. One advantage of having an emergency supply of water is that you can use that clean water during boil advisories, reducing the amount of water that you have to boil.
In the past, Pensacola’s water quality has received a lot of negative attention. Some people say that they do not like the taste of the tap water here. Plumbers get a lot of requests to install residential water filtration and purification systems. Anyone who wants to know more about Pensacola’s water quality can consult the ECUA’s annual Consumer Confidence Reports.
Lastly, our Pensacola plumbers see their fair share of stubborn clogs. Hair, grease, and even soap builds up over time. Your best defense against clogged pipes is to use a drain screen, but even those don’t catch everything. Our plumbers have the tools to safely and effectively unclog your home’s pipes. People are discouraged from using over-the-counter drain cleaners. These liquids and gels are often ineffective, and if these abrasive chemicals are used on a regular basis, they can actually damage your pipes, which will cost you a lot more money in the long run.
How Does the Water in Pensacola Affect Your Plumbing?
The Floridan Aquifer System lies underneath the entire state and portions of Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina. The system’s Sand and Gravel Aquifer supplies water to Pensacola and the rest of the Western Panhandle. This water supply does not create any unique plumbing problems for the city’s residents.
Pensacola homeowners face many of the same plumbing issues as the rest of the country. Some homes in the U.S. have what is called hard water. Hard water has more minerals in it than soft water. One telltale sign of hard water is that glassware comes out of the dishwasher with a film on it and doesn’t look clean. Some people with hard water also notice that they need a lot of soap or shampoo to create a lather. While hard water does not pose any health threats, it can create plumbing issues.
Over time, hard water can leave a buildup of scale inside of pipes. Fixtures like showerheads may also have this buildup. Installing a water softener will help most homes with hard water. The cost of a new water softener is an investment and can make your home’s plumbing system last longer.
Another common plumbing repair that we see is the replacement of pipes in older homes. While some piping materials like copper and PVC can last up to 50 years, no material lasts indefinitely. In the past, pipes were made of metal. In addition to copper, cast iron was also used. Today, copper is still commonly used but it is more expensive than modern materials like PVC and PEX. Not every material will be suitable for every home. When it’s time to replace your home’s pipes, ask our plumbers to do an inspection and let you know which materials will work best.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Pensacola?
The average cost for residential plumbing repairs in Pensacola, FL is $364.00. Most projects will fall within the $88.00 to $641.00 range. These costs do not include taxes or permit fees.
No matter where you live, the cost of plumbing depends on several factors.
The nature and scope of your plumbing project
The term “plumbing services” covers a lot of different types of projects like a new gasket, a water heater repair, or a brand new sink. Generally speaking, the bigger the project, the bigger the price tag. In Pensacola, unclogging a drain will cost you around $268. On the other end of the price spectrum, you can expect to pay up to $7,439 to install a new shower.
If you have an emergency and need someone out ASAP
Many plumbing issues are not emergencies. A leaky faucet or showerhead upgrade can wait a day or two if our plumbers’ schedules are booked out. However, issues like burst pipes, sewer backups, and no hot water are emergencies. If our experts have to tend to you ASAP or outside of normal business hours, you can expect to pay more.
Your eligibility for home repair assistance
Homeowners in Pensacola and the greater Escambia County may be eligible for income-based home repair assistance. This money may be used to cover or offset the cost of certain plumbing repairs. Some of these funds are loans that must be repaid, while others are grants. Each program sets its own eligibility requirements.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Pensacola?
Absolutely. Better plumbing will save you money no matter where you live. Our plumbers in Pensacola do more than just fix leaky pipes; we love to help homeowners find ways to save money on their water bills. Depending on your budget and lifestyle, that could mean upgrading to a new high-efficiency washer or installing a low-flow showerhead.
Older gaskets, fixtures, and joints do wear out over time and have minor leaks. It can be easy to ignore or overlook a dripping faucet, but you must take care of even the smallest leaks. Over time, it really does add up. If your bathroom faucet leaks one drop per second for an entire year, that’s 3,000 gallons of wasted water, not to mention wasted money.
Keep in mind that not all plumbing problems are as noticeable as a dripping faucet. You can’t see some portions of your home’s plumbing system. There are pipes that run behind walls and maybe even under the subflooring. You want to detect any leaks in these “hidden” pipes before leaks have a chance to damage your home’s wood, drywall, and insulation. Routinely checking the accuracy of your home’s water meter is one way to detect any minor leaks that you can’t see. We recommend blocking out a two-hour period where no one in the home will use water. Check your meter at the start and end of these two hours. If your water meter changes at all during this time period, you likely have a leak somewhere in your home. Ask our plumbers to come out and see where the problem is before it turns into a major headache.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Pensacola Vs Hire a Plumber?
If you have questions about city-wide issues like mainline repairs after a storm, you should call Pensacola’s water utility company, ECUA. The city is also responsible for water hydrants, no matter where they are located. If you see a burst or leaking hydrant, you should also call the utility company.
If you experience low or no water pressure in the absence of severe weather or a posted advisory, first check with your neighbors. If they also have the same issue, there’s a good chance the problem is with the city’s lines. If you’re the only house on the block with a change in water pressure, then the problem is likely with your home’s plumbing and you should call us.
Generally speaking, homeowners are responsible for the plumbing on their property and inside of their homes. For those issues, you will need to hire our professionals. In some cases, a plumbing problem might be a shared responsibility between the homeowner and utility company. We will let you know if that’s the case, after an inspection.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Pensacola?
The city of Pensacola requires permits for several types of plumbing services including a new septic tank, hot water heater replacement, and the relocation or replacement of fixtures. In addition to a permit, the city also requires a Notice of Commencement for any work that costs $2,500 or more. Pensacola’s Building Services Department issues plumbing permits.
Some may feel that plumbing permits are an inconvenience and nothing more than red tape. However, plumbing permits ensure that the work being performed is professional and up to code. Plumbing permits protect your family’s health and safety. And in addition to just being a bad idea, “under the table” plumbing repairs can bring down your home’s value. Our professional plumbers will know which permits are needed. We’ll handle the necessary paperwork so you don’t have to.