One of the most common household problems that require a plumber is the dreaded clog. Funny word, not so funny plumbing service issue. And one that effects most communities, not just Costa Mesa, CA and the surround Orange County area.
A clog refers to any blockage that prevents the free flow of water or other materials through a pipe. It can lead to or from a drain, or a water source, or a main sewer line serving the community. No pipe is ever completely immune to clogging.
Types of Clogs
Clogs can be the result of a structural disruption of pipe infrastructure, or a physical blockage. There are big serious clogs; and lots of smaller ones that are inconvenient, but don’t necessarily have huge consequence.
The most serious kind of clog happens in the sewer line that connects to municipal sewage infrastructure. In the more populated areas of Costa Mesa, CA and the rest of Orange County, most homes are connected to neighborhood sewer lines, while more isolated homes may have their own septic systems. Problems can happen with both types of systems, but with large community systems there is more potential for public health impacts.
Here are a few of the more common scenarios that could lead to a clogged sewer line:
- the clog may originate with the sewer drain
- the clog may be a result of a pipeline that has sunk due to shifting terrain
- clogs may be the result of a break, fissure or tree root infiltration into the sewer line
- debris or grease that is flushed down the toilet or drains can result in clogs and backups in the main sewer line
Smaller clogs can also occur over time in the pipes connected to sink or shower drains. These don’t usually lead to devastating damage, but they can be a pain. And, on occasion, they can result in burst pipes and water damage — so don’t ignore the warning signs. Whether you suspect there’s a problem with the main sewer line, or a backed up or clogged household drain or pipe, calling a plumber should be one of the first things you do.
Signs That You Have a Clog
Here are a few giveaway indications that you may be dealing with the dreaded clog and it’s time to call a professional plumber:
- water that is slow to go down the drain, or that makes a great deal of noise while doing so
- chronic back-ups in the sink or shower drain
- if multiple fixtures are backed up at the same time, say the sinks in both the kitchen and the bathroom, the problem may be with the main sewer line
- if weird things happen when you flush the toilet, such as bubbling, or water backing up in a nearby sink or shower, there may be a clog somewhere alone the line
- changes to your lawn or the outdoor areas of your home may indicate a problem with the main sewer line
- foul odors emanating from a drain, especially in concert with other symptoms, is a pretty sure sign of a clog
Don’t Panic; Here’s What to Do
So, there’s water gushing everywhere from a backup drain and you don’t know where it’s originating or how to get it to stop. Take a deep breath and follow these steps:
1. Don’t panic; it doesn’t solve anything
2. If you know where the main water valve to your house is and it’s accessible, go ahead and turn the water main off.
3. Resist the urge to conduct DIY diagnostics and repair — these can go sideways in so many ways if you don’t really know what you are doing. Don’t assume you can pour chemicals on the problem to make it go away. Many of these products are toxic in addition to not working well on some types of blockages, which require manual extraction.
4. Immediately get in touch with the experienced plumbers at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of Orange County. If it’s an emergency they are on call 24/7 to help out. The dispatcher will offer advice and send help asap.
How a Professional Plumber Can Help
There are many distinct advantages to working with a professional plumber. Trained, certified and insured plumbing experts like those on the bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of Orange County team have the background and experience to make an educated guess about what the problem is likely to be.
They are also familiar with the best and most up to date diagnostic protocols to determine the problem, and the right tools to fix it safely, quickly and for good. Homeowners can learn a lot about their household systems simply by observing a master plumber at work. And the best ones will always share their knowledge.
The general DIY approach is to handle the immediate problem and then forget it ever happened. Most homeowners just want the inconvenience to go away so they can resume normal living and routines. A professional plumber can spot problems that are not yet urgent, but may cause trouble down the road. This difference in perspective and attitude can save thousands of dollars in potential repairs and a ton of frustration.
Lastly, going forward, a professional plumber can perform regular scheduled maintenance on sensitive plumbing systems to ensure that small problems never become big ones. Costa Mesa, CA and surrounding Orange County is subject to increasingly extreme weather events and related catastrophes such as wild fires and earthquakes. These events can disrupt plumbing infrastructure in a way that bears monitoring. Maintaining a working relationship with a professional plumber and having a service such as bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of Orange County on speed dial makes sense for any size household.
If you live in the Costa Mesa, CA area and have a plumbing issue that requires a professional plumber, give the experts at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of Orange County a call. They have experience with all kinds of plumbing issues, large and small and they’ll find and fix that clog and get things moving again smoothly in no time.
Photo By Nomad_Soul at Shutterstock