Do you want to know the trade secrets for cutting costs on your next water bill? Or how you can identify the right time to replace your hot water system? What about when to take a leaky tap seriously?

Today, I’ve decided to open the floodgates and let the answers to some of Salmon Plumbing’s most frequently asked questions come swimming out. In this read I’ve got everything from trade secrets to top strategies for care and protection, and more.

You’re sure to learn something that will help you look after your property’s plumbing system and ensure you save a few dollars when it comes to next month’s water bills.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s dive in. 

FAQ #1: How does a plumber identify what is blocking a drain and get rid of it?

When investigating this kind of issue, plumbers will use various equipment and knowledge to analyse the situation. 

They will likely take note of the location of the blockage (e.g. the bathroom vs the kitchen) and ask you a few questions to understand what is generally sent down the drain. 

Plumbers will then use special tools, like CCTV cameras, water jetters and plumbing draining rods to investigate the issue further and break down the blockage. 

FAQ #2: What are the benefits of installing a solar hot water system?

Solar hot water systems are one of the biggest underdogs in plumbing. 

Whether it’s money, or perhaps a political stance, people seem to continuously underestimate the value that these eco-friendly systems can add to your home (and wallet!). A solar hot water system can:

  • Minimise the electricity needed to heat water and lessen energy bills as a result. 
  • Reduce the greenhouse gas emissions generated by heating water.
  • Offer an aesthetically pleasing alternative to large tanks taking up space in your yard. 
  • Make you eligible for a solar hot water rebate.

Installing these systems may be costly at first, but the long-term savings and environmental impact you can make, will see you recoup your spending and then some. 

FAQ #3: Why is my water bill so high?

An unusually high water bill can be a real slap in the face when you’re not expecting it. If you’ve noticed a recent spike in your monthly costs, there may be an underlying problem that is causing excess water usage at your property. Here is a list of some of the possible culprits:

  • Leaky toilets, taps, irrigations (think lawn sprinkler systems), or lines (underground pipes that connect your home to a water meter)
  • Inefficient fixtures (consider the age of the plumbing appliances in your home, outdated fixtures can use more water in less efficient ways!)
  • Lifestyle changes (consider the seasons, are you doing more laundry in winter? Or, perhaps filling up your pool in the summer?)
  • Water waste (consider the water habits of your roommates, are they leaving the tap on while they brush their teeth? Taking long showers? Maybe overwatering the lawn?)

These issues might not be the first that spring to your mind, but they are worth investigating. If you find that after looking into them, you’re still experiencing unusually high water bills, then it’s time to call in a plumber to inspect your system.

FAQ #4: Is a leaky tap really a big deal?

If you care about the amount of cash in your wallet and the quality of your plumbing system, then yes. 

Like I mentioned earlier, a leaky tap might be a sneaky culprit for unusually high water bills, meaning that ‘drip-drip’ isn’t just keeping you awake at night, it’s costing you money! 

Additionally, there are so many reasons that a tap could be leaking that it’s worth investigating even if it you consider it to be insignificant. 

It could be something as simple as a problem with the O-ring, a small disc that holds the tap in place. Or, it could be a sign of something more serious, like valve corrosion, problems with the washers, or broken pipes or fittings. 

FAQ #5: Why do my drains smell horrible and how can I get rid of the smell?

Drains are meant to prevent smells from coming back into your home. So, if you find yourself wrinkling your nose when you walk into the bathroom, you might have a problem. Luckily, it’s usually an easy fix.  

Most odd smelling drains are caused by a dried out trap. See, every drain has a U-shaped trap designed to hold a small amount of water. This water blocks sewer gasses from travelling back up your plumbing and into your house. When the trap dries out, there is no barrier, hence the smell when you enter a room. 

The simple solution is to pour water down drains in your house that aren’t used often. This builds the barrier back up and should, hopefully, get rid of the smell. 

However, if that odd odour persists, it’s probably time to look at calling in a professional plumber to thoroughly inspect your system and track down the problem. 

FAQ #6: How do I know when to replace my hot water system?

There are a few hints that it might be time to look at investing in a new hot water system for your property. The biggest and most obvious being that you are frequently calling your local plumber for repairs. 

Outside of this issue, some other factors to consider are:

  • How hot your hot water is when it comes out of the tap
  • How long your water is taking to heat up
  • The age of your hot water system (if it’s older than 10 years, you might find new models are more energy efficient and nicer to your water and electricity bills!)

FAQ #7: My pipes are making a banging sound – what’s going on?

This problem is most commonly known as a water hammer. It can be caused by a range of different issues, so it’s important to identify what is exactly causing the problem before you investigate home remedies. 

A plumber is your best bet in this situation, they can help you identify what is causing the water hammer. Plus, a quick diagnosis from an experienced professional will help you resolve the problem sooner and ensure you’re treating it correctly ASAP.

Do you have a plumbing question that wasn’t answered here? 

We’ve got plenty more answers and information about caring for, and protecting, your property’s plumbing system on our blog! You can check it out here

Otherwise, feel free to contact us on 07 3073 9211! We’d be happy to answer any questions you might have.