Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Charlottesville?
- 2 How Does the Water in Charlottesville Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Charlottesville?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Charlottesville?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Charlottesville vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Charlottesville?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Charlottesville?
Charlottesville, Virginia has a rich history, diverse culture, and plenty of plumbing issues to go with them. The most common plumbing problem that we see is the aging infrastructure of old iron pipes in the plumbing systems of Charlottesville.
When the government declared certain places as historical landmarks, it failed to initiate protections for old plumbing systems that are failing at an exponential rate in historic homes across the country. These aging plumbing systems may have accumulated a bit of mineral build-up due to the moderately hard water in Charlottesville. Old iron pipes will also most likely have some rust in the system which affects the quality of water as well. It may also have the same resulting plumbing issues you see almost anywhere you go, such as:
- Leaking faucets
- Leaking toilets
- Toilets the constantly run
- Hard water, scaly buildup on faucet openings and shower heads
- Water heater problems, either leaking or not
If you have any of these problems, contact us as soon as you can. Most plumbing issues cost you a small fortune on your next water utility bill. Fix those leaks and save a few bucks. It’s that simple.
How Does the Water in Charlottesville Affect Your Plumbing?
Charlottesville’s water supply comes from South Fork Rivanna River Reservoir and Ragged Mountain Reservoir. According to the latest water analysis for the City of Charlottesville, Virginia, the water quality for the reporting period of 2020 was considered to be above average for the standards set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
There are, however, certain additives put in the Charlottesville water supply that are intended to boost its water quality, but also have a long-term effect on aging plumbing and to some degree, newer PVC and CPVC plumbing systems.
While these additives are safe for human consumption, their fine particulate form causes plumbing systems to leak from prolonged exposure. There is also the lead issue. No matter where you go in the United States, the number one concern for the drinking water supply is lead content.
All water contains some degree of lead, and certain negligible amounts of lead are not harmful. Lead has been found in the Charlotte water analysis report, but the amount is considered to be harmless.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Charlottesville?
The only thing worse than a plumbing problem is having to pay for one. The City of Charlottesville has its share of plumbing problems, but as a whole, we paid substantially less than the national average for plumbing repairs.
Let’s take a look at the average cost of a plumbing repair in Charlottesville, Virginia.
- Average low cost – $96
- Average high cost – $695
- Average price paid – $395
The numbers above do not include factors such as:
- Permits/inspections for a Charlottesville plumbing project
- Materials/supplies Virginia state sales taxes
- Materials/supplies Charlottesville City sales taxes
- General contractor fees which can add $47.40 to $59.25 to your final costs
Now, let’s look at some contributing factors that also can affect how much your Charlottesville plumbing project is going to cost.
Size and Scope of Project
It all depends on the specifics of the plumbing problem. A simple leaking faucet will not cost the same as a burst water line, but sometimes the smaller problems carry a bigger price tag because of accessibility issues. Hiring us has another perk when you live in Charlottesville; let us do the work while you enjoy a big bowl of shrimp and grits at the Ivy Inn.
Demolition and Reconstruction
A leak inside a wall that has been slowly accumulating over the past year or so destroys the wood inside, and there will be charges for the demolition and subsequent reconstruction. If you want to repair a leaking pipe, you might have to break a few pieces of sheetrock in the process.
These are just a few of the issues that can cause your plumbing repair cost to increase or decrease.
If your plumbing problem happens after hours, on the weekend, or on a holiday, we will be charging special rates. Plumbing problems never happen at an opportune time; it’s just something we all have to deal with.
Plumbing repairs can be simple, like replacing a faucet in the bathroom or rusty pipe under the kitchen sink. They can also be as broad as digging up the yard to replace an entire plumbing and pipe system. You are paying for our time, experience, and expertise. The job might require only one person to come in and make a quick repair, or it could necessitate a squad of professionals from several departments to get it under control. The time you pay us for includes prep and clean-up fees, any machinery required for the job, and any components and replacement parts.
Equipment and Materials
Some plumbing jobs don’t require much equipment or machinery, such as replacing an old interior pipe or a leaking faucet. Other situations are complicated and require heavy equipment and large machinery, like backhoes.
Everything touching the soil must be removed, including trees, swing sets, and tool sheds. Tree roots must be cut. Equipment is used to dig up the earth and go under the plumbing lines. A lot of plumbers rent their equipment, and those costs are passed on to you. With simple issues, like threading a leaky faucet or a little part to stop a running toilet, the parts are always on hand.
Permits and Inspections
Cities and states have plumbing work laws in place. Work on exterior pipes, safety codes, drain excavation, and personal wells are all issues a plumber will be familiar with, as well as myriad legal factors.
A plumber has to be licensed, as ours are, having received formal training and an apprenticeship from an accredited source. In Virginia, plumbers must have 2 to 5 years of experience and pass a test to be certified.
Our plumbers know what you legally need to get your repairs completed. Where you can dig and parts needed for a hot water heater are regulated, so make sure we have all the proper paperwork.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Charlottesville?
Yes, better plumbing pays for itself, especially if you’ve had a lot of plumbing repairs lately. For instance, if you’ve had us out to repair leaks in your main water supply line, it is going to save you money in the long run to have the entire water supply line replaced.
If you are looking for ways to save even more on your monthly water bill, try upgrading all of your plumbing fixtures, such as toilets and faucets to new WaterSense plumbing fixtures. When you upgrade to this newer, more efficient fixture, you are going to save money on your water bill. These fixtures are designed to use 20% less water.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Charlottesville vs Hire a Plumber?
When the magnitude of your plumbing project facilitates the involvement of the water utility company, your plumber will usually work in unison. You shouldn’t have to intervene at all. However, there may be times when you need to seek the advice of the water utility company about your plumbing issue, such as when a city water main breaks.
If you have any questions regarding your Charlottesville plumbing project that might involve the water company, check on the website for the list of things that either do or do not classify as needing help from a professional or a permit.
If your Charlottesville plumbing project is a simple leak or a toilet valve replacement, then you will not need a permit, just one of our skilled professional plumbers to do the job right.
Water companies will only make repairs that the city of Charlottesville is responsible for. This could include problems such as a broken water main in the street. Standing water on your property can mean an issue with the city utility company, but it can also mean a problem with your pipes. Most water utility companies will perform maintenance visits, but if the problem is with your system, they will charge you a fee, and you will still have to make the repairs yourself.
A relentless increase in your water bill over a few months is almost always an indication that there is a water leak in your system. Even a slow leak can cause extreme damage. It’s best to contact us right away.
If the water meter is running, the problem is always on your property. Another reason to keep a conscientious eye on the meter. If the water meter isn’t running, contact your water utility company right away.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Charlottesville?
Typically, small jobs will not require permits. These include unclogging drains and toilets, replacing a small section of piping to fix a leak, and repairs such as replacing faucets, showerheads, and other small fixtures. However, bigger jobs such as reconfiguring your plumbing system and moving or addition of sinks, toilets, tubs, and other larger fixtures will require you to secure a permit before performing any work.
If your Charlottesville plumbing project requires you to get a plumbing permit, you can speed up the plumbing permit process by downloading and printing the plumbing permit application.
If you are having a plumbing repair performed and you are not sure if you need a permit, you can get a lot of valuable information by accessing the City of Charlottesville website.
Our professional plumbers will keep you up to speed on what plumbing repairs need a permit. They may tell you to leave all the permits and fees up to them. They may pay for all of your permit and inspection fees upfront, but the charges for permits and inspections will be reflected in your final bill. They do it as a convenience to you, but you still need to shoulder the cost.