Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Tampa?
- 2 How Does the Water in Tampa Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Tampa?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Tampa?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Tampa vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Tampa?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Tampa?
Like in other parts of the country, Tampa residents have to deal with things like dripping faucets, clogged drains, and backed-up toilets. We also get our fair share of calls to install new bathroom and kitchen fixtures or repair a leaking pipe. You can’t always predict when a plumbing problem will come up, either. In Tampa, you have to worry about all kinds of mundane plumbing issues, but you may experience some unique plumbing problems, including:
Tampa is a modern city, and plenty of newer neighborhoods exist. These homes were plumbed according to more recent building codes and are generally safe. But, there are also abundant older homes, and many of these homes have lead pipes or copper pipes with lead solder. Over time, the lead leaches into the home’s drinking water which can cause various health issues, especially for very young children and pregnant women.
Your Tampa home’s water comes from the Hillsborough River. The water is considered hard and has suspended minerals like calcium and magnesium. When there are high levels of minerals in the water, it naturally begins to collect inside the pipes. Over time, you’ll end up with restricted water flow, clogs, or even burst pipes if the pressure is strong enough.
Corroded Pipes and Fixtures
Your utility company treats Tampa’s drinking water to ensure that it’s free of contaminants. That means it has a high chlorine level. If you have an older home with copper plumbing pipes, the water’s pH value and chlorine content in Tampa may cause corrosion. We see it all the time, and we’re experts at changing out corroded pipes and installing new fixtures. We’ll also help you get to the root of the problem to avoid future corrosion.
How Does the Water in Tampa Affect Your Plumbing?
As mentioned above, the City of Tampa gets the vast majority of its water from the Hillsborough River. When the river is insufficient to meet water demand, like during dry periods, the City buys water. The purchased water may consist of treated regional groundwater, surface water, or even desalinated seawater. These water sources can contribute to hard water issues like clogged pipes and corrosion.
However, the good news is that the hardness of the water that’s from the Hillsborough River varies. During the rainy season, the water’s hardness reduces, and during the dry season, the water becomes harder. Still, even a tiny amount of mineral deposits in your water can eventually lead to a plumbing issue.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Tampa?
On average, Tampa homeowners pay plumbers anywhere from $45 to $200 an hour for their services. How much will it cost you to have a plumber come to your home? That depends on your unique plumbing situation. We can’t give you an accurate estimate without seeing your problem, but we can tell you that the more manageable the problem is to fix, the faster our plumbers can fix it, and the less expensive the repairs will be. Some of the things that will help determine your plumbing repair costs include:
Cost Factor — Your Water Pipes
It’s not just the condition of your plumbing that affects the cost of repairs; it’s also about the make of your pipes. If your home still has lead plumbing pipes or copper pipes with lead solder, you must replace them entirely. This isn’t a small job, nor is it an easy job. Exposure to lead pipes and solder puts everyone at risk. The only way to know if such a radical approach is necessary is to have your home’s plumbing inspected.
Cost Factor — How Extensive Is the Problem?
Since we, like other plumbers, charge by the hour for plumbing services, the longer a job takes, the more we have to charge. You can rest assured that when we arrive at your Tampa home, we’re aware of your budget, and we do our best to limit the amount of time the problem inconveniences you. However, we will not compromise quality for speed. We’ll take our time to make sure we resolve your plumbing problem correctly and according to code and do our best to maintain your budget at the same time.
Cost Factor — Is It a Plumbing Emergency?
Unfortunately, plumbing problems can happen anytime in Tampa, like in the middle of the night, on a weekend, a holiday, or when you’re away on vacation. Some plumbing problems just can’t wait; they’re serious emergencies that you need to address immediately. Catastrophic flooding in your home due to broken pipes, sewer backing up into your home, and other emergency plumbing problems are inherently more costly due to the additional damage that usually happens.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Tampa?
Plumbing problems are a pain to deal with, and plumbing repair bills can be pretty costly. Is it possible to reduce the amount of money you spend on plumbing issues? Absolutely. The truth is that if you have your plumbing system inspected once a year, you can avoid many of the unexpected plumbing problems other homeowners in Tampa experience. That’s because, with each annual inspection, our plumbers will make a note of areas of concern and repair potential problems before they become serious issues.
Addressing issues regarding hard water, such as having a water filtration system or water softener installed, will also save you money. First, when we reduce the water hardness, there are fewer minerals in the water and less buildup in pipes and fixtures. We also minimize corrosion when we soften hard water.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Tampa vs Hire a Plumber?
Plumbing problems can make your stress levels rise, and it’s not easy to decide what to do. On the one hand, the City of Tampa provides your home with water, so you may think it’s a good idea to call them. On the other hand, you understand that as a homeowner, you have responsibilities.
When to Call a Plumber
Like most other cities in Florida, the water utility company isn’t responsible for the water or sewer lines on your property. That means if anything goes wrong inside your home, from clogged sinks to water pressure problems, it’s yours to deal with. This also holds for outside water fixtures like spigots, underground water inlet pipes, and sewers. So, if it happens on your property, and it’s plumbing-related, hire our plumbers or take care of it on your own.
When to Call the Tampa Water Department
You’ll want to contact the Tampa Water Department to report issues with the water main on the street or a sewer line break that appears to be on city property. You’re also going to call them if you have concerns about the quality of the water coming through your faucets. For example, if you notice the color, odor, or taste of the water is off, call the Water Department.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Tampa?
As a homeowner, you have the right to do home improvements and repairs as long as they meet the standards outlined in the building code. Whether or not you need to get a permit for plumbing depends upon the situation. You can easily make the repairs yourself without pulling a permit for some plumbing issues in and around your Tampa home.
Plumbing issues that you don’t need to get a permit for include:
- Repairing Leaks: Managing water leaks will protect your home and property from damage and save you money. If you have leaks in drains, water, soil, waste, or your vent pipe, it’s okay to take care of it without paying for a plumbing permit. It’s a good idea to repair the leak quickly.
- Water closets: You don’t need a permit in Tampa to remove clogs, repair leaks in pipes, valves, or fixtures in your water closet. You also don’t need to worry about a permit if you’re going to remove and replace the fixtures, pipes, and valves precisely in their original positions.
- Septic Tank Cleaning: There is no requirement in the City of Tampa for a permit to clean septic tanks. As a homeowner, you can do the work yourself or hire someone to do it. Either way, there is no extra charge for a plumbing permit to perform septic tank cleaning.
Plumbing Issues You Will Need a Permit for in Tampa:
If your plumbing problem requires you to call in our professional plumbers, chances are a plumbing permit is going to be needed. That’s not because you’re calling a plumber; it’s just the code in Tampa. Keep in mind that homeowners and contractors alike must obtain plumbing permits to perform any repairs or replacements, except the items listed above. A few examples of the types of plumbing jobs in Tampa that we regularly have to pull a permit from Hillsborough County for include:
- Water heater replacement
- Replacing a home’s plumbing
- Installing toilets, showers, and sinks
- Sewer line repairs and replacements
- New build plumbing installation
- Leak repairs in restricted areas
If your project entails any of the activities listed above, you can apply for a permit online, or you can visit the permit office in person. If you’re unsure whether the City requires a permit for your Tampa plumbing project, you can contact the experts at Hillsborough County, and they’ll answer all your questions.