Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Bloomington?
- 2 How Does the Water in Bloomington Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Bloomington?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Bloomington?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Bloomington vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Bloomington?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Bloomington?
Bloomington, IL, is home to six historic districts, as well as several scattered landmark properties. White Place is one of the larger landmark districts, and a subdivision that dates back to 1898 primarily makes this up. In the 1870s, Hungarian and Irish immigrants built the North Roosevelt Avenue Historic District. Any home that has stood for 120+ years will need plumbing maintenance along the way. In these older homes, we often have to replace sewer lines and plumbing throughout the house. Back then, manufacturers made many pipes out of galvanized steel, cast iron, and even clay. We do many upgrades, swapping out these older materials for copper, PVC, and PEX. Not every pipe material will be suitable for every home. We can do an inspection and let you know what materials are an option for your home.
The City describes owning historic property as “an honor and also responsibility.” As such, the town maintains architectural guidelines for many of these buildings. If you live in one of Bloomington’s historic districts, you’ll want to check with the city before completing major repairs and restorations, as you may require special permits.
Our plumbers in Bloomington also see their fair share of clogged drains. Hair, grease, and food can all build up and create a clog. We recommend that our customers use drain screens and not dump cooking grease down the drain. However, we know clogs can and do still happen. And yes, we do fish out toys that have been flushed down the toilet and created a blockage. We’ve seen it all, so don’t be embarrassed if this happens in your house.
Another plumbing issue we see a lot of is tree roots that damage pipes. Bloomington is an older city with fertile soil, so you’ll notice that we have many mature trees here. Some of these trees were planted decades ago, without regard to how big the root system can grow. The roots of a mature oak or maple can exert enough force to shift and crack the pipes that run from your house to the City’s main lines. If the City ever needs to remove a tree on your property because it’s a threat to the municipal lines, the City Forestry department will replant a new tree for you.
How Does the Water in Bloomington Affect Your Plumbing?
Bloomington’s tap water comes from two sources, Evergreen Lake and Lake Bloomington. There is a large enough reservoir between these two lakes to supply the city with one year’s worth of water, even if there was a drought. Even with an adequate supply, the city is looking ahead to future water needs. In the future, Bloomington may add other water sources, including the Mahomet Aquifer and an interim groundwater supply located southwest of the city.
There are different times of the year when Bloomington residents report that their water has an unpleasant taste or odor. The Public Works Water Division is aware of these complaints and reassures residents that the water is safe to drink. Specific compounds that naturally occur in blue-green algae are responsible for the “off” odor and taste. Chilling the water before drinking it can improve its taste. Even though the water is regarded as safe to drink, some residents want to take extra steps to ensure their water smells and tastes how they like it. Because of this issue, our plumbers in Bloomington, IL, do get many requests for water filtration systems.
Another water concern that residents may have is lead pipes. The federal government banned the installation of lead pipes in 1986. However, lead was a common pipe material before that year. If you live in an older home in Bloomington, IL, your home may have lead pipes. The city has created a Homeowner Checklist For Lead Service Line Replacement. This checklist walks homeowners through the steps needed to determine if they have lead pipes and what they need to replace them. Any Bloomington residents who have concerns about lead pipes can call the Public Works Department at 309-434-2225.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Bloomington?
The average plumbing bill in Bloomington, IL, is $440.00. Many repairs and projects will fall within the $106.00 to $774.00 range. However, several factors affect the final price tag.
Cost Factor: The Nature and Scope of the Project
If it’s time to renovate your bathroom completely, Bloomington homeowners can expect to pay a bare minimum of $3,445.00. The average cost comes in at $10,102.00, but the sky’s the limit for remodels. The fixtures that the homeowner chooses drives much of the final price.
At the other end of the price spectrum is unclogging pipes. If we come out to take care of a stubborn clog, you can expect to pay in the ballpark of $252.00.
Cost Factor: If You Need Emergency Repairs
Our plumbers can handle most plumbing needs during regular business hours, and we schedule accordingly. However, some plumbing issues are emergencies, and you’ll need someone out right away. If you have a clogged sewer line or a burst pipe on a weekend or holiday, you can expect to pay more for service.
Cost Factor: If Your Household Qualifies for Financial Assistance
Plumbing repairs and upgrades keep your family safe and help maintain the value of your home. However, the cost can be a barrier for families with lower incomes. The city of Bloomington, IL, offers home repair loans and grants that will help cover the cost of plumbing repairs. Each program sets its eligibility criteria. The state of Illinois also provides home repair programs.
Any of the City’s nearly 4,000 veterans should also check with the Veterans Administration (VA). The VA offers several loan programs, some of which you can use to improve a home.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Bloomington?
Absolutely. Better plumbing saves you money in two ways. You’ll see a reduction in your water bill, and you’ll be adding to your home’s value. We love to help our customers find ways to improve their home’s plumbing system. If you have a smaller budget, an upgrade to low-flow showerheads and faucets will save you money.
We typically recommend that homes in Bloomington have insulated water pipes, especially if you spend time away from home over the winter. Many people turn down their thermostats before leaving for vacation. If the temperatures dip low enough, water pipes can freeze and burst. No one wants to come from vacation to a flood.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Bloomington vs Hire a Plumber?
Homeowners are typically responsible for the plumbing on their property. The plumbing includes the sewer and water pipes that run from the house to the point where these pipes connect with the municipal main lines. If you have a problem with these pipes, your irrigation system, or any plumbing within your home, give us a call.
The City is responsible for hydrants, municipal water and sewer main lines, and stormwater management. For questions or concerns about any of these, call the Public Works Water department at (309) 434-2220.
Some plumbing issues may have shared responsibility between you and the City. For example, if you call us because water is bubbling to the surface in your yard, our inspection may reveal that we need to repair both the municipal mainline and your water pipes.
Lastly, our plumbers in Bloomington do get phone calls for low water pressure. Before you call us, we encourage you to do a little detective work first. See if your neighbors also have low water pressure. If the problem affects several homes, the issue is likely with the mainline, and you should call Public Works. Alternatively, if your home is the only one with low pressure, the problem is probably within your home’s plumbing system, and you should call us.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Bloomington?
The city has specific regulations in place for plumbing repairs and services. According to the city, “New plumbing system installations, additions, or major alterations to existing systems shall upon approval of plans and specifications be granted a work permit.” In other words, you’ll need a permit for virtually any work performed on your home’s sewer lines, water pipes, and irrigation system. One benefit of hiring us is that we will take care of obtaining any necessary plumbing permits.
And while a permit isn’t needed to drain a residential swimming pool, you may require prior approval. The City prefers that we drain pool water into the city’s sewer system. But before you undertake that task, the City asks that you check with the Public Works Department first. If draining the pool into the sewer system isn’t possible, you may discharge the water over land if you follow a strict procedure. The City will fine anyone who empties a pool or spa against their policy, so call if you have any questions.