Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Eau Claire?
- 2 How Does the Water in Eau Claire Affect Your Plumbing?
- 3 How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Eau Claire?
- 4 Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Eau Claire?
- 5 When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Eau Claire Vs Hire a Plumber?
- 6 When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Eau Claire?
What Are the Most Common Plumbing Issues in Eau Claire?
One plumbing issue that some older homes in Eau Claire has is lead pipes. While lead pipes were banned at the national level in 1986, there was no requirement to remove existing pipes from homes. The City estimates that there are 1,200 lead service lines still in use. Eau Claire offers financial assistance to property owners who need to upgrade their pipes. If you aren’t sure if your home’s plumbing system contains lead pipes, you can call 715-839-5045 or email LeadServiceLine@eauclairewi.gov for assistance.
One issue that our plumbers in Eau Claire see a lot is frozen and burst pipes. In the winter, it’s not uncommon for there to be weeklong stretches of below zero temperatures. Many pipes freeze while homeowners go away on vacation, usually to somewhere much warmer. Before they leave, they’ll set their home’s thermostat too low or even make the mistake of shutting off the heat altogether. The good news is, burst pipes are avoidable. There are several ways that we can protect your home’s pipes, like installing foam insulation or heating tape. Give us a call before the winter sets in. We can do an inspection to make sure your pipes are cold weather-proof.
A common issue for homeowners everywhere is clogs. We see toilet, sink, and bathtub clogs regularly. This is a common issue in Eau Claire especially because of the hard water in the area. The water leaves mineral deposits on the pipes that restrict the flow rate and promote clogging. The best way to handle a clog is to prevent it from forming in the first place. We recommend that everyone take precautions like using drain screens and not dumping cooking grease down the kitchen sink. However, we know that clogs can and do still happen. Not to mention, sometimes a precocious child will flush a toy down the toilet. Don’t be embarrassed if this happens in your home, as we’ve seen it all.
Hard water also lends itself to water heater issues in the area. Minerals accumulate in the bottom of your tank, decreasing efficiency over time and limiting your equipment’s lifespan.
As professional plumbers, we have the right tools to safely and effectively unclog pipes. Many people think they can tackle stubborn clogs on their own, mainly because drain cleaners are sold over the counter. We typically discourage homeowners from using these liquids and gels. For one, they are dangerous for the average person to handle. You do not want to get drain cleaner in your eyes or on your skin. These chemicals are so abrasive that they can damage pipes, costing you more money in the long run. So if you have a clog, your best bet is to call us.
How Does the Water in Eau Claire Affect Your Plumbing?
All of Eau Claire’s tap water comes from a city-owned well field on Riverview Drive. There are a total of 16 wells that capture water as it slowly sleeps towards the Chippewa River. This water source does not pose any unique problems for its residents.
Some residents may have hard water in their homes. Hard water contains higher levels of certain minerals and is not a health concern. However, hard water can be a nuisance. Over time, the scale can build up inside of pipes and your water heater. You know you have hard water if you need a lot of soap to create a lather or if glassware comes out of the dishwasher with a film on it. Installing a water softener will help and is a service we routinely provide.
How Much Does Plumbing Usually Cost in Eau Claire?
Many people wonder how much hiring our plumbers in Eau Claire will cost. The average cost of plumbing services is $425.00. Many projects will fall within the $103.00 to $748.00 range. Keep in mind that these prices do not include permit fees or taxes. The final price tag for plumbing depends on a few different factors.
If You Have a Plumbing Emergency on Your Hands
We typically take care of planned repairs and maintenance during regular business hours. However, we know that emergencies like a burst pipe or a sewer backup can happen at any time of the day or night. You can expect to pay more for plumbing services if we need to come out ASAP, on a major holiday, or during a Green Bay Packer game. (Just kidding about that last one.)
The Nature and Scope of the Project
If you call us to unclog a drain, you can expect to pay between $108.00 and $493.00. (And please do call us, as we’ve already explained why you shouldn’t reach for the drain cleaner.)
On the opposite side of the price spectrum, homeowners in Eau Claire who remodel their bathrooms pay an average of $11,347.00. Although, with remodeling costs, the sky is the limit. The final price tag depends a lot on the cost of the fixtures that you pick out.
If You Qualify for Financial Assistance
The cost of necessary plumbing repairs and upgrades can be expensive for some homeowners. Luckily, Eau Claire and the state of Wisconsin recognize that every home should have a safe plumbing system. There are several home repair loans and grants. Each program sets its eligibility criteria. Certain residents within the city limits may qualify for Eau Claire’s Housing Rehabilitation Loan program. Western Dairyland also offers a Home Repair & Accessibility program for residents living anywhere within Eau Claire County. Lastly, if you’re one of the city’s 3,522 veterans, you may be able to use a VA Purchase Loan to make certain home repairs and upgrades.
Can Better Plumbing Save You Money in Eau Claire?
Absolutely. Better plumbing will save you money no matter where you live. We love to help our customers find ways to save money on their water bills. It might be time to upgrade to a front-loading, high-efficiency washing machine. And while a tankless water heater costs a lot more than a storage water heater, they last twice as long and use less energy. Even installing new low flow faucets throughout your home makes a difference. In addition to saving you money on your utility bill, better plumbing also adds value to your home.
Any water leaks in your home’s plumbing system can cost you big time. There are known leaks, like the dripping showerhead you’ve been ignoring or the leaking faucet you’ve been meaning to call us about. Those drips may seem insignificant, but add up over the course of a year. To give you an example, if your kitchen faucet leaked one drip per second for an entire year, more than 3,000 gallons of water would be wasted.
And then there are undetected leaks, which are the plumbing problems that you can’t easily see. For those issues, the City has put together a leak detection brochure that we think you’ll find helpful. It walks you through how to monitor your water meter for accuracy as well as how to detect toilet and outdoor leaks.
One way that people discover leaky pipes is if their water bill suddenly spikes with no known explanation. If this happens to you, you can apply for a utility leak adjustment request to help offset the cost of the unintentional water usage. To qualify for a leak adjustment, any plumbing repairs must be completed within a certain time frame. Unfortunately, water loss that occurs due to theft, vandalism, or construction damage is not eligible for an adjustment.
When Should You Call the Water Utility Company in Eau Claire Vs Hire a Plumber?
Homeowners are responsible for any plumbing issues that occur on their property or inside of their house. You’ll need to hire us for things like a leaky bathroom pipe or a faulty water heater. Homeowners are also responsible for the portion of the sewer line that runs from their house to the point where it connects to the main sewer line in the street.
The City is responsible for all municipal water and sewer main lines, fire hydrants, and storm drains. If you see a problem with any of those, call the Water Utility office at (715) 839-4954.
If you suddenly experience no or low water pressure, we recommend that you check with your neighbors before calling anyone. If they also have water pressure issues, there is likely something happening with the municipal water lines. The City may be working on the municipal main lines or flushing out hydrants. But if your home is the only one experiencing water pressure problems, you should give us a call. The problem is likely happening in your house’s plumbing system.
When Do You Need Permits for Plumbing Service in Eau Claire?
You will need an Eau Claire plumbing permit if you plan on adding or moving a fixture. Minor repairs like a faucet gasket replacement or a new heating element won’t require a permit. If you have any questions about plumbing permits, you can call Eau Claire’s inspection office at 715-839-4947.
One advantage of hiring us is that we take care of acquiring any necessary permits, so you don’t have to worry about the paperwork. We know that many of our customers think that permits are nothing more than red tape and an unnecessary expense. The truth is, permits ensure that plumbing repairs and maintenance are up to code. Permits protect your family’s health and safety.