Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Kent?
- 2 How Does the Water in Kent Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Kent?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Kent?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Kent Vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Kent?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Kent?
Corrosion and Pinhole Leaks
Kent’s average water hardness is 47 mg, which is considered soft. Soft water has less minerals in it, so while it runs through copper pipes, metal leaching and corrosion might occur. This corrosion may lead to pinhole leaks over time. Pinhole leaks are hard to detect, but if you notice a loss in water pressure, a sudden spike in your water bill, or signs of water damage around your home, then this might be the cause.
Frozen Pipes and Pipe Bursts
Temperatures can drop below freezing in the winter months, often wreaking havoc on plumbing systems. As the water molecules freeze, they expand until there’s no more room, creating a small crack or even causing the pipe to burst. This can create a geyser-like effect when the water begins to thaw.
If you notice a leak or if your pipe bursts, turn off the main water supply and contact us immediately. Mr Blue Plumbing has experienced plumbers on-call 24/7 to handle such emergencies.
How Does the Water in Kent Affect Your Plumbing?
The main water source for Kent comes from several surface water springs and wells found throughout the surrounding service area. The Green River watershed delivers water to Kent, and the Cedar River basin provides groundwater serviced by underlying aquifers. Recreational and agricultural activities are banned in the Cedar River Watershed to preserve the quality of water. In 1985, Kent established a contract with Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU), becoming a partner in the Tacoma Regional Water Supply System (RWSS).
In Washington, more than 6 million residents are supplied fresh drinking water from public water utilities. Throughout most of the state, the water is moderately hard. The hardness level is determined by the amount of calcium, magnesium, and other minerals found in the water supply. Soft water is measured by calcium carbonate levels of 0 to 60 mg, with moderately hard levels ranging between 61 mg and 120 mg. In Kent, the water is rated at 47 mg and is considered soft.
Most homes built more than 50 years ago utilized copper pipes for the plumbing systems. Over time, this piping can corrode and lead to leaks and contamination of drinking water. If you notice blue water or copper pipes with bright blue spots, it could be a sign of sulfate deposits present in your water.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has strict guidelines for monitoring the amount of lead and copper found in public water systems. While the water coming into your home is deemed safe for consumption, your aging pipes could be adding contaminants that you are unaware of.
Having your pipes inspected regularly and testing the quality of your drinking water will ensure everyone in your home is living in a safe environment. We can direct you to affordable solutions to reach this end.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Kent?
Routine maintenance of your plumbing system can help reduce costly repairs down the road. On average, Kent residents pay between $150 and $825 for professional plumbing services in their home.
According to Kent City Code 7.02.040, all pipes and connections from the water meter to the premises or building served by the city water are the property and sole responsibility of the owner or lessee of the premises or building.
There are several cost factors involved in properly maintaining a residential plumbing system.
Materials and Supplies
Our quotations and final prices include the labor cost for the amount of time it took to complete the job. Applicable sales tax and city permit fees are also included.
A large portion of the final bill consists of additional materials and supplies needed to complete the job. It varies with each customer and depends on the scope of the plumbing issue.
Urgency of Repair
If an emergency occurs in the middle of the night, we have professional plumbers on call to help correct the problem. Obviously, this service will be at a premium, with an associated surcharge. Routine maintenance calls and easy-to-fix issues will come with a lower overall cost.
Age of Home
Older homes in Kent are prone to extensive plumbing repairs because of the age of the existing pipes. Sewer blockages that involve excavation are not uncommon and can cost homeowners a substantial amount of money. We find the most affordable way to solve an issue, saving our customers as much as possible on their final bill.
Remember, no job is too small. Sometimes the easiest of problems turn into the biggest issues. Don’t hesitate in getting simple plumbing repairs done before it becomes an expensive task to tackle.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Kent?
Washington state law requires homeowners and all businesses to have a backflow prevention assembly if they have any of the following items connected to their plumbing system:
- Fire sprinkler system
- Lawn irrigation system
- Swimming pool
- Hot tub or jacuzzi
- Livestock watering system
- Decorative fountain
- Onsite well
The device prevents contaminated water from flowing back into your drinking water, which creates a serious health hazard. The Department of Health requires an annual inspection with results sent to the Highline Water District.
Simple ways to prevent backflow include using hose-end applications for applying insecticides to your yard. Also, never submerge a garden hose into a pool, sink, or bucket that contains water. Prevention is the key to eliminating bigger problems that can result in costly plumbing bills.
Fixing minor leaks is another good way to keep monthly water bills down. The EPA estimates that every year 1 trillion gallons of water is wasted nationwide. The average household is responsible for approximately 10,000 gallons of that waste annually.
Common issues, such as dripping faucets and leaky valves, are easy to fix and can help homeowners save up to 10 percent on water bills. The EPA recommends looking at your water usage. If it is higher than 12,000 gallons per month for a family of four, there is most likely a significant leak somewhere in your home.
To identify potential problems, check faucets, showerheads, toilets, and outdoor systems regularly. If you find a troublesome leak that won’t stop with a simple adjustment, give us a call before it gets worse.
The city of Kent offers a water leak adjustment. City Ordinance 4191 applies to customers who discover a water leak, water line failure, inadvertent error, or abnormal water usage on their property. Anyone that experiences two times the average usage in the preceding 12 months is eligible to apply for the adjustment. If the application is approved, the homeowner will receive a credit for 100 percent of the excess consumption.
There is also a Lifeline Utility Rate Reduction Program for residents aged 62 or older or permanently disabled. Qualified residents that receive their bill directly from the city of Kent will receive a 60 percent discount on both their water and sewer rates.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Kent Vs Hire a Plumber?
The city of Kent oversees all water, sewer, and storm drainage utilities. The utility providers that service the area include Highline Water District and Soos Creek Water & Sewer District.
The Highline Water District services 70,000 residents of South King County, operating 299 miles of water mains. In case of emergency, contact 206-824-0375.
Soos Creek Water & Sewer District manages 17,000 service connections with over 223 miles of water mains and 517 miles of sewer mains. Customers are responsible for their pipes and connections from their side of the water meter into and within the house. All residents should know where the water shutoff valve is located, to stop water flow into the house during an emergency. Customers are also responsible for the side sewer line that runs from house to the sewer stub. In case of emergency, contact 253-620-9900.
If you are uncertain who is responsible for the plumbing problem, give us a call. We can help you determine ownership and contact the appropriate city officials if it is a public right-of-way issue. If the pipes are your responsibility as a homeowner, we can help you determine the best course of action at the most affordable price.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Kent?
Kent requires all new homeowners to pay a tap charge ranging between $100 and $360 based on the size of the connection. A permit review fee and inspection fee are required before receiving a water service permit. A system development charge of $5,949 is also charged to new customers with one water meter.
A homeowner must apply for a residential plumbing permit for any work that requires the removal or replacement of piping. A building permit is also necessary for the removal of any surfaces, such as gypsum, framing, etc. The replacement of a hot water tank also requires a residential plumbing permit.