Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Hampton?
- 2 How Does the Water In Hampton Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Hampton?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Hampton?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Hampton Vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Hampton?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Hampton?
We solve a wide range of issues throughout Hampton, most of them caused by the normal wear and tear of daily life. The Hampton area is also known for having many older and historic houses, some of which were built as early as the 1920s. While these homes are beautiful, older homes can have serious plumbing issues as the various components wear out and need replacement. Once you find you’re making the same repairs many times, that’s a sign that your plumbing could really use an update. Hampton is also extremely susceptible to flooding, which brings its own set of plumbing headaches for homeowners that need to avoid water damage. Here are some of the typical issues we handle in Hampton.
Leaks in your water line can be caused by corrosion, loose joints, pressure from the surrounding soil, or even aggressive tree roots that grow into the pipes. This problem happens much more often with older homes, but even relatively newer homes can get a leak somewhere in the system. Leaky pipes waste an incredible amount of water, which is why excessively high water bills are often the first clue. You can also end up with serious structural damage if the wayward water ends up pooling under your foundation.
Sump Pumps Installation or Repair
Hampton’s location in low-lying areas along the Chesapeake Bay makes recurrent floods a fact of life for large sections of the city. Many neighborhoods that aren’t directly in the floodplain will still be affected by storm surge flooding that can occur during strong hurricanes and tropical storms. That means having a sump pump installed in the basement is critical for most Hampton homes. These hard-working devices spring into action during a flood to pump out the excess water into a drainage system outside.
Sump pumps will often wear out and need repairs, especially once they’ve handled several floods. This can sometimes happen at the worst possible time, which is why we always recommend getting your sump pump inspected at least once a year. You can extend the life of your appliance by cleaning it out every three to four months and removing any solid debris that may be lodged inside.
Clogs and Slow-Running Drains
We get many calls from homeowners dealing with slow-running drains, or even standing water. Drains have to manage so much for us, including hair, food remains, soap residue, solidified fats, and more. It’s easy for these materials to glob together into a solid obstruction over time, which is why clogs will happen to everyone at one time or another.
But if you’re getting clogs all the time, you should think about prevention. A hair catcher in your shower drain should drastically reduce the number of hair strands that end up burdening your plumbing system. You should also avoid pouring grease or oils down your kitchen drain, where they can mix with food remains and congeal into a blockage.
Whether the problem is happening in the kitchen or the bathroom, clogged drains will definitely slow down the flow of your day. The clog solutions available at the hardware store will work occasionally, but they can also cause damage to your plumbing system if you overdo it. Our certified plumbers at Mr Blue Plumbing have much safer and more effective clog removal tools at our disposal.
How Does the Water In Hampton Affect Your Plumbing?
The City of Hampton sources its tap water from the Chickahominy River and underground wells located in the Lee Hall area, and it then gets treated by Waterworks. Hampton residents have access to high-quality drinking water, but the drawback to our plumbing systems is that the city’s tap water measures as moderately “hard”. That means the water has a sizable presence of dissolved minerals like calcium and magnesium, which happens when the water interacts with rock. Moderately hard water is not as bad as the extremely hard water found in other parts of the country, but it’s still not ideal for your plumbing.
The white film that appears on your shower glass walls or is left behind on water glasses when they come out of the dishwasher is the presence of these minerals in the water. Calcium and magnesium can also settle and harden into a rock-like coating called mineral scaling. As this substance builds up inside your pipes and plumbing appliances, it can affect the performance and longevity of your overall plumbing system. Hard water is especially rough on water heaters because it forces the heating element to work way too hard while producing your hot water. Many Hampton homeowners get a water softener installed to filter out these minerals and protect their plumbing appliances from the effects of hard water.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Hampton?
Homeowners in Hampton can expect to pay between $45 to $165 per hour to hire a certified plumber. That’s a very wide range in prices but that’s because plumbing projects can vary so much depending on the situation. We’ll be happy to give you some more specific numbers if you tell us more about your plumbing issues. Here are some of the main factors that would go into your estimate.
Complexity of the Problem
Hiring a plumber costs much less for simple jobs like repairing a faucet, unclogging a drain, or other problems that we can usually handle in a jiffy. Technical projects, like installing a sump pump or a water heater, do cost more per hour and this just reflects that they require more effort and more specialized skills.
Plumbing emergencies are notorious for happening in the middle of the night sometimes, which is why Mr Blue Plumbing is available 24/7. Urgent problems like a burst pipe or a sewage backup are rarely an easy fix. That’s why these services do potentially cost more, especially if the incident happens outside of regular business hours.
Plumbing materials come at different price points, as well as with different pros and cons. There are certain plumbing projects where the materials you choose will have a big impact on the overall cost of our services. For example, replacing your corrugated pipes with Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) would be much less expensive than using copper.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Hampton?
Definitely, especially when it comes to the preventative maintenance needed to keep your home’s plumbing system in great shape. Quality plumbing is like so many other aspects of being a homeowner: you pay the initial cost in order to spend less in the long run.
Along with saving the cost of making repairs, better plumbing also saves you the stress of dealing with a plumbing emergency. If you’re hiring plumbers to make the same repairs over and over again, it’s usually better to try to fix the underlying issue. Once you’re dealing with recurrent leaks because of aging pipes, that’s your home’s way of nudging you towards making the upgrade.
Another major way that better plumbing can save you money is by being a lot more efficient and lowering your utility bills. This is especially true if you haven’t upgraded your major appliances over the last 8-10 years, like your water heater, dishwasher, or washing machine. The high-efficiency Energy Star models available on the market now are truly in a league of their own. They use substantially less water and energy, which is great for your wallet and also great for the environment. The EPA’s WaterSense program has some helpful guidance for choosing more efficient plumbing appliances and fixtures.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Hampton Vs Hire a Plumber?
The municipal water lines in Hampton are maintained by Newport News Waterworks, while the city’s Public Works division manages all wastewater. Most of the issues you might have with your plumbing system would require a call to a certified plumber, but there are exceptions when you should call a utility company instead. It all depends on whether the problem is specific to your home’s plumbing, which it would be your responsibility to resolve, or whether it’s happening within the city-owned plumbing infrastructure.
For example, a sudden spike in your water bill is likely to be caused by a leaky pipe that’s wasting water within your own system. You should call Mr. Blue Plumbing and we’ll use our leak detection skills to get to the bottom of it. Another common plumbing situation where homeowners might be thinking about calling the utility company is when dealing with low water pressure. This issue will sometimes be caused by a leak, but it can also happen from excessive mineral scaling in your home’s pipes, among other reasons. Again, since the problem is happening in your own plumbing system, you should call a plumber to investigate and fix the problem.
The kinds of scenarios where you should be calling one of Hampton’s utility companies have to do with the main lines operated by the city, such as a burst pipe in your neighborhood or sewage overflowing onto the street. Another situation would be if you completely lost water throughout your property, especially if any neighbors did as well. This would be a water outage, possibly caused by problems with the municipal water line in your neighborhood, and you should call Waterworks.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Hampton?
Plumbing projects in Hampton are regulated to protect the interests of the community, as well as the homeowner. Homeowners are required to hire a Virginia-licensed plumber and the work has to comply with the Virginia Plumbing Code. You won’t need to go through the permitting process for simple plumbing repairs, like unclogging a drain or replacing a faucet. But anything that affects the structure of your plumbing does need approval from the city.
Installing a water heater, replacing a water line, or making changes to your sewer connection would all qualify as needing a permit. These are all highly technical projects that need to be handled by a skilled professional. Beyond that, all homes in Hampton are connected to the municipal water distribution system. That means it’s possible for certain types of plumbing changes to affect plumbing infrastructure owned by the city or by close neighbors.
As certified plumbers, we’re very familiar with the local and state regulations needed for every plumbing project, and we take care of that step before getting started.