Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Greenville?
- 2 How Does the Water in Greenville Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Greenville?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Greenville?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Greenville Vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Greenville?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Greenville?
There is never a dull day in Greenville, NC. Home to the three-time division champions East Carolina University Pirates, Greenville also plays host to exciting seasonal events attended by revelers from all over the country. These events include PirateFest, a pirate-themed event returning for its 15th year in April 2022.
The city’s cultural diversity has also seen its population rise consistently year over year. More homes are now being built, and with every homeownership, new plumbing problems are unraveled. We often receive calls from Greenville residents for the following problems:
- Clogged drains, fixtures, and plumbing
- Frozen and burst pipes
- Broken water and sewerage lines
- Sewer backup
Clogged Drains, Fixtures, and Plumbing
There have been several cases of clogged drains in most parts of Greenville. While unblocking some household drains, we find wipes, blue shock towels, paper towels, among other items that should never get to the drain.
In some cases, too much buildup of these items leads to a clogged sewer. If there is any debris in the sewer line, the buildup will then lead to a backup. As a result, we have to involve a team of our plumbers to do a thorough assessment and run a snake down the plumbing system. We always caution Greenville residents against flushing other material apart from human waste and tissue paper to avoid repeated plumbing problems.
Despite having some non-tissue items indicated as flushable, they will still end up clogging your toilet since they aren’t biodegradable like tissue paper. Items such as wipes will also take longer to break down despite having a ‘septic safe ‘mark. We also advise Greenville residents to avoid overloading the sewer line when the entire family and friends are at home. The pipes may not be used to supporting many people at the same time.
Additionally, the city’s hard water contributes to clogs because it leaves mineral deposits inside your pipes and limits what can flow through them. Over time, the hard water can contribute to slow drains and even total blockages that require our assistance to clear.
As Greenville’s population increases, the existing stormwater infrastructure is under pressure to ease off runoff water. Notably, the Town Creek Culvert Storm Drain was adversely affected since it’s responsible for areas covering around 250 acres downtown. Heavy rains caused more problems, and we started having an increased number of calls from homeowners who experienced flooding in their basement. The excess rainfall meant that the aging stormwater infrastructure was overburdened, leading to sewer overflows. We had to respond to some of the most affected areas for emergency repairs due to sewer backups, including Spartanburg Street and East Stone Avenue. We also had to respond to more cases near Laurens Road and Cleveland Park.
The city officials had to redesign the Town Creek Culvert, which dates back to 1935, to increase its capacity. This way, it could now accommodate the modern demands. It was one of the most ambitious infrastructure projects in this historic city, but it still struggles to keep up with demand at times. There is a considerable decline in sewer backup issues, although we still get calls due to the same issue. In most cases, the backup problems are caused by unwanted items in the drain that continually clogs the system, such as food waste particles.
Frozen and Burst Pipes
Greenville and the surrounding areas experience wild temperature swings, which cause considerable harm to the plumbing system. In 2015, we experienced one of the coldest spells, and many residents had freezing pipes in their homes. The pipes under homes and in the ground would then burst. The freezing temperatures could drop drastically, and the waters would freeze again, making it harder to locate the frozen pipe. Once the temperature rises, the broken pipes would gush out water, placing a significant demand on the GUC’s water system. Greenville Utilities had to alert city residents to keep an eye on any potential water problems.
As temperatures drop, water in the pipes freezes and turns to ice which piles pressure on the pipe from the inside walls. When this happens, we have many cases of water or even broken pipes in the older houses with weaker plumbing systems. When the pressure in the pipe has nowhere to go, it forces its way out through the weakest point on the pipe. To avoid flooding in such situations, call our professional plumbers in Greenville when you notice any leaks. Sometimes you may not notice a leak until you find your water bills have skyrocketed because even a tiny leak can lead to lots of water wastage of up to 90 gallons per day. In summary, call our plumbers if you notice the following signs for possible frozen pipes in your system:
- Strong smell from your drain
- No water from your fixtures and faucets
- Visible frost
- Water damage
How Does the Water in Greenville Affect Your Plumbing?
Greenville residents get a considerable amount of water from surface water sources. The Public Works department is responsible for preserving and maintaining natural resources to ensure that city residents consume high-quality water. However, the water in Greenville has 85 milligrams of dissolved calcium and magnesium per liter, making the water moderately hard as per USGS. The low water hardness level doesn’t pose a significant risk to your plumbing system, as the dissolved minerals will take longer to build up in the pipes.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Greenville?
You may overlook the plumbing in your home, but a slight problem in the system means you will no longer have water running smoothly. A plumbing system consists of a combination of different faucets, fixtures, pipelines alongside other materials. Consequently, whenever a problem arises, consult our Greenville plumbers. Often, homeowners who attempt DIY procedures end up causing more problems, requiring additional repairs at an extra cost.
Many homeowners ask us about the expected costs of a plumbing repair project. You will mostly pay an average of $370 for most plumbing repairs. Major plumbing might cost you up to $700, but a simple fix can cost you about $90. Note that this doesn’t include plumbing permits that apply in Greenville and the greater Pitt County of about $100 – $200. Below are some of the factors that influence the plumbing costs:
Cost Factor: Materials and Equipment Needed
While fixing some plumbing issues such as clogs, we may never know the extent of the block until we assess your system. Some issues will only require a manual drain snake or hydro-jetting to resolve the issue. However, some stubborn clogs will take more time, and we might have to use special equipment to break walls or dig up your garden, which comes at an extra expense of about $239 – $274.
Cost Factor: Labor
If your plumbing repair project requires just a few fixes, such as repairing the water main, you can pay as little as $50 per linear foot. However, a remodeling project requires more labor from removing existing pipes, replacing new pipes, site cleanup, and more. You will pay a higher cost of about $5,000, depending on the size of your home.
Cost Factor: Time Spent on the Plumbing Task
Our Greenville plumbers will take just a few minutes to unblock your drain with the right equipment. If a paper towel were the cause of the clog, it would cost you around $300 to $600. However, if a persistent buildup of minerals from our hard water and other debris leads to a backup, it will take more time to sort out the issue, adding more costs to your total price.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Greenville?
Absolutely. Better plumbing ensures quick diagnosis and repair of common Greenville plumbing problems such as pipe freezes, saving you time and money. Below are other ways our plumbing services will save you money in Greenville:
With the unpredictable temperature fluctuations in Greenville, it’s crucial to safeguard your pipes from harsh weather conditions. Before the cold periods, insulate the large areas where pipes pass through like crawl spaces. Although insulation sleeves are effective, avoid using them on pipes adjacent to any uninsulated walls because they will block indoor heating. Our Greenville plumbers can also help to temporarily seal your property’s air inlets and foundation vents as well as any cracks or holes.
Ensuring that your pipes are warm reduces the likelihood of a freeze. While at home, maintain the temperature at about 55 degrees. If you plan to be away, you can drain your water system to avoid any risk of a freeze, leak, or a possible burst. We advise using electric heating cables or tape couples with an automatic thermostat. Another option is using space heaters near the pipes to ensure that the water remains above freezing point. This way, you save money on possible plumbing repairs and avoid water damage on your property.
If you have pipes on uninsulated exterior walls, open the kitchen cabinets and bathroom vanity to direct heat from the kitchen or bathroom to your pipes. We advise keeping the doors closed for homes where the water supply lines are in the garage to reduce cold airflow.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Greenville Vs Hire a Plumber?
Most of the plumbing problems in Greenville can be sorted by our professional plumbers, provided the issue is within the homeowner’s property. If there is a leak, clog, or backup, call us immediately to diagnose the issue. However, if the plumbing problem is beyond your water mains, you need to contact the water utility company. For instance, a backup may be caused by an overflow in the city’s sewer. In this case, it’s the city officials’ responsibility to unblock the sewer line.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Greenville?
Clearing clogs and fixing simple leaks won’t require a permit. If you plan to do any significant plumbing repairs or installations, you must have a permit from the city of Greenville. Once the project is complete, you should also schedule an inspection via the Inspections Division to ascertain that all works are done per the required standard. The Inspections Division has a responsibility of maintaining the well-being and safety of the residents of Greenville.