Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Overland Park?
- 2 How Does the Water in Overland Park Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Overland Park?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Overland Park?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Overland Park Vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits For Plumbing Service in Overland Park?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Overland Park?
Overland Park was well-positioned from the start to be a prosperous city. The nearby commercial and manufacturing benefits of its proximity to Kansas City, Missouri help, but our real treasure is water. Close positioning to both the Kansas and Missouri Rivers provide large amounts of usable water for all of Johnson County, many of whom share a single water utility provider that sources from both bodies of water.
While readily available water is the first step to a healthy plumbing infrastructure in a city, there are still some problems that residents of Overland Park commonly deal with.
Clogged and slow drains
Everyone suffers from clogged and slow drains once in a while. Often slow or clogged drains happen because of food waste solids or hair slipping down drains. Once these get snagged in the plumbing, they catch other objects and a clog can quickly get out of control. In Overland Park, clogs do seem to be a little more common, possibly due to the hardness of the water sourced from Kansas and Missouri. Hard water contains small particles of minerals that can also get caught in your plumbing and create slow flow or clogs over time.
The weather in Northeastern Kansas can range from humid and over 100 degrees at the height of summer to falling below zero for days at a time in the winter. Frozen pipes are a common plumbing issue that folks here experience during the worst cold snaps each winter. Exterior pipes without proper insulation and protection, as well as interior pipes in crawl spaces and basements, are vulnerable to frigid conditions. Pipes that are pressurized and containing water but not flowing are especially likely to freeze.
Freezing pipes will restrict flow at first, so you may notice little water or no water at all coming through plumbing. Frozen pipes can develop cracks and leaks under the extreme pressure of the expanding ice. In extreme cases, pipes can entirely burst — causing extreme levels of costly flooding. If you think your pipes are frozen, call us for expert help immediately. Frozen pipes can be thawed by our experienced plumbers if they get to them quickly enough. Frozen pipes should never be delayed, as flooding can cause massive amounts of damage in addition to more costly plumbing repairs than if dealt with immediately.
How Does the Water in Overland Park Affect Your Plumbing?
In Overland Park, our water is sourced from the Kansas and Missouri Rivers. While this supplies plentiful water, it’s not without its drawbacks. The high mineral content of the rivers can’t be entirely overcome even by treatment, so our water in Overland Park contains lots of trace minerals. While this “hard” water is entirely safe for human consumption, it creates problems in your home.
Most people think of hard water as the cause of that soap residue on clean dishes, or that persistent soap scum in the shower. It does cause all those things, but it can also wreak havoc on your plumbing. Fixtures can develop scale over time, becoming discolored with grit that is difficult to remove. The same thing happens within your pipes, as minerals slowly collect within the plumbing. Eventually, when enough of these minerals collect, they can restrict flow or even cause blockage. Clogs and reduced flow can be annoying on their own, but if your plumbing is systemically clogged over time from mineral content then pressure can build up and cost leaks and potential flooding.
Overland Park’s water rates at a hardness of around 140 ppm. Our water is considered very hard at that level, though it’s not as hard as some cities.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Overland Park?
The Kansas City Area isn’t particularly high cost in reference to other major metropolitan areas, and you can expect to pay pretty competitive prices for plumbing services. Simple jobs like clogged drains can be as little as $80-$150, but complex, labor-intensive jobs can be much more expensive, sometimes up to $900 or more. Several factors can greatly influence the cost of plumbing jobs here in Overland Park.
Scale of Job
Obviously, with larger jobs comes larger costs. With plumbing, this isn’t always a simple additive effect. Plumbing systems are complex and the larger a job gets the more aspects of the plumbing system that will be affected and have to be accounted for. Larger jobs like full remodels require more planning, more time, and more expert, careful execution.
Like most other contractors and technical services, our plumbers typically determine cost based on their time but also the cost of any materials they needed for the job. While we may have easy access to standard, everyday fittings and components, rare or specialty components will cost more to acquire.
Luckily, Kansas City’s role as a major railway junction and a manufacturing hub offers a wide array of available materials and components for plumbing at some of the best prices in the country, but the material cost for fixtures, replacements, or necessary materials will still significantly affect the cost of plumbing work.
Age of Building
Older buildings create their own problems with their often older plumbing. While there’s nothing about older plumbing to stop our plumbers from understanding the system and diagnosing problems, often more issues continuously present themselves in older plumbing. If our plumber comes to fix a leaky fitting, only to find that the pipes are corroded and dangerous, that will amount to more repairs.
While unexpected complexities to plumbing work on older homes may increase costs, it’s still saving money in the end compared to the horrible health issues that can come with corroded plumbing or the cost of flooding from cracking and burst pipes.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Overland Park?
Better plumbing can always save you money. Just like anything else about your home, investing in quality infrastructure and long-term solutions will always beat out the price of temporary solutions and kicking the can down the road. There are a few ways in particular that residents in Overland Park save money on their plumbing though.
A water softening system helps remove excess minerals from the water coming into your home. Softer water means less soap scum, better showers, and less risk of plumbing problems over years. Though nothing can remove all minerals, a water softener can vastly increase the lifetime of your plumbing components and fixtures and save you money in the long run.
Updating old pipes
Even though Overland Park was only incorporated in 1960, its roots go back to the turn of the century as people began looking for places to settle near Kansas City’s growing commercial center. Overland Park has expanded as well during its 60-year existence, encompassing many areas with much older homes. Especially for owners of older homes, replacing old, outdated plumbing could save a lot of money.
Plumbing components aren’t designed to last forever, and materials like galvanized steel can deteriorate near the end of their four to five-decade lifespan, potentially releasing harmful lead into drinking water. Corroded pipes grow weaker, particularly around joints and elbows, until eventually, they give way. New materials and fixtures in plumbing are far safer, more efficient, more durable, and more reliable. Replacing aging plumbing components and fixtures is a guaranteed way to save money over the life of a house.
More insulated pipes
Frozen pipes can be disastrous and hectic and come at the worst time – winter storms. The best way to avoid the potential damage to your plumbing and flooding that could occur from frozen pipes is to ensure that they don’t freeze at all. Replacing cracked or burst pipes and repairing flood damage would be a huge expense compared to replacing vulnerable pipes with materials that are better suited to withstand the cold. Our plumbers have seen some tragic burst pipe disasters from winter freezes and most of them could have been avoided with a little insulation and thermostatic heat tape.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Overland Park Vs Hire a Plumber?
Overland Park shares an independent, but public water utility company with most of Johnson County. They manage sourcing, storing, treating, and routing water throughout the city, but anything that happens past your connection to the mainline will not be their responsibility.
Sudden total outages in water may warrant contacting the water utility. They will be able to tell you if others are having the same problem, in which case it’s likely their responsibility to fix it. If it’s unique to your home though, the best the water utility will be able to do is come test that they are supplying the correct pressure to your connection. Anything that happens inside your home, whether it affects the whole house or only certain fixtures, you need our plumbers to handle.
It should be mentioned that there are circumstances that you should immediately call us regardless of whose responsibility the issue may technically be. If you spot water leaking from plumbing, it’s time to get our experts in. One leak means pressure already built up enough to cause water to get through the solid pipe, and more pressure will build. Cracks get bigger quickly and small leaks turn into floods far too fast if not dealt with as soon as possible.
When Do You Need Permits For Plumbing Service in Overland Park?
In Overland Park, permits will be required for any installation, removal, or replacement of any fixture or component of a plumbing system. While you won’t need a permit for a repair for a simple leak or a clogged drain, anything that replaces or installs parts will require a permit. Permits can be easily applied for through Overland Park’s Building and Construction Department.