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Troubleshooting Clogged Water Lines

Troubleshooting Clogged Water Lines

Water lines are the arteries of your plumbing system. Main supply lines bring water from a well or municipal water system to your house. Inside your home, water flows through them to individual fixtures, such as showers, sinks and toilets. Clogged water lines can reduce the water flow - and thus water pressure - to your house. Not only can this be frustrating, it can result in damage to your plumbing system and, at the same time, put a dent in your wallet.

How Clogs Form

Water lines can clog for any of several reasons. If your home has hard water or is plumbed with galvanized iron pipes - like many homes in the Atlanta area that are more than 30 years old - rust and mineral deposits can build up over time and form an obstruction inside the pipes, preventing water flow to part of your home. In other cases, poorly installed pipes can obstruct water flow. If a plumber used too much solder while joining copper pipes, the hardened solder could narrow the space inside the line and restrict the flow of water through the pipes.

Diagnosing Clogged Water Lines

Paying attention to the water flow in your house is the best way to diagnose clogged water lines. Fixtures where water pressure starts strong and then drops off right away are good evidence of a constriction in the water line. If you have water pressure in one part of your home that is different from that of the rest of the house, you may have a clog in one of the lines coming from the water heater or cold water supply. On the other hand, if it’s only one fixture that’s experiencing low flow or bad pressure, the problem is not with the system, but only in the line feeding that fixture. In the case of a sink, it could just be a clogged faucet strainer.

With video inspections and snake tools, most clogs can be diagnosed and repaired without too much difficulty. In the case of rusted pipes or poorly soldered joints, though, pipe replacement may be the best way to go. Replacing them will fix the existing problem and help prevent future issues, as well.

If you have reason to think a water line is clogged in your home, call a plumbing professional for an inspection. If there is a clog, a plumber will be able to diagnose it and offer the best solution for fixing any clogged water lines. A quick call to Casteel could save you a lot of frustration in the short term - and a lot of money over the long run.