Whenever you have a number of guests in your home at the same time, plumbing issues may arise due to the capacity of your plumbing and septic system. This is because the system was designed to accommodate a certain number of people over a defined period of time. Problems can arise when you have more people using more water than the system can accommodate which can happen often during your Thanksgiving gathering. When this happens, it can definitely put a damper on your event in your home.
Here are some tips on how you can diagnose and fix some of the common problems that can occur:
Septic Tank Alarm Going Off
This can happen when more water than usual is being used over a short period of time. Extra added water in the tank may cause the system’s float to rise and trigger the alarm. If your system is on a timer, push the silence button and then don’t use much water over the next 24 hours so that the system can reset and the alarm light will deactivate. The reset involves the system syncing again with the pump so it starts to filter effluent into the drain field again.
Kitchen Sink is Clogged
These backups often happen due to food preparation and dishwashing. If food and grease flow into your drain and build up, your pipes clog and the result is a backup in the sink. First, place a plunger over the sink’s drain and have a rag handy to help clean up any residual water. Move the plunger up and down multiple times but don’t lift it off the drain. If your sink is still clogged, your p-trap may be malfunctioning. The device should be clearing your line and allowing the water to flow out. Clear the device and your sink should unclog. If this doesn’t work, call a professional plumber. At FloHawks, we can remove and clean the traps. Our technicians can also cable the line with a snake to clear the pipes. Don’t use drain cleaner because it can be toxic to septic systems.
Toilet is Backed-up
Use a plunger or toilet auger to clear the backup. If this doesn’t work, a professional plumber can simply remove your toilet and clear or remove anything that is causing the clog.
If these don’t work then FloHawks Can Help
We know that plumbing problems during family gatherings especially with Thanksgiving can present a challenge that should be handled quickly and professionally. If these DIY methods don’t do the trick, give us a call or schedule an appointment online. Our team of professional plumbers will be happy to help with any residential plumbing or septic system needs.
When inviting guests over, it is important to keep in mind that your home was specifically designed with a plumbing and septic system to accommodate only a certain amount of people. More people in the house means more water being used.
Over the years, we’ve seen quite a few common plumbing problems that occur during family gatherings and events. Here are some quick tips to fix these problems.
One issue we see is the septic tank alarm going off during or after the party. This may be the result of more water being used over a short period of time. The added water in the tank causes the float to rise and trigger the alarm. Your system may be on a timer and if you push the silence button and leave it without using much more water for the next 24 hours, the system may be able to catch up and the red light will turn off. Calling out a service provider may just be costly and not change the need to cut back on water until the system catches up with the pump and filters the effluent out into the drain field.
Backups in the kitchen sink are also a very common problem. Sink clogs often happen because of food prep and washing the dishes. Bits of food and grease can quickly build up and cause the pipes to clog and backup in the sink.
Try putting a plunger over the drain and put a rag in the sink next to it (if you have a double sink). Pump the plunger up and down several times without lifting it up off the drain. If the problem is in the p-trap, it should clear the line and let all the water out. If you are still not able to clear the sink after doing this, call FloHawks, and one of our service technicians can remove and clean the traps. They can also bring a snake to cable the line and completely clear the pipes. We do not recommend liquid drain cleaner as it can be toxic to septic systems. If you are on a sewer system and liquid cleaner does not work, it can be dangerous to the technician and ruin his equipment and cables. Please be sure to inform us if you have used liquid cleaners.
Toilets backing up are another common issue at gatherings. These clogs may be easily fixed with a plunger or toilet auger. Sometimes though, that is not enough and the toilet simply needs to be removed by one of our certified technicians to clear or remove the objects that may be blocking it.
With a little extra care and attention, you should be able to avoid major plumbing issues, even with extra guests in the house. If a problem does present itself in the form of a clogged toilet or backed up drain, don’t hesitate to call FloHawks. We are here for you 24/7.
Trenchless technology is a new method of repairing or replacing an underground pipe with minimal digging in your yard or parking lot. For homeowners, this technology now offers a way to fix your plumbing problem without having to excavate your entire yard or remove retaining walls and fences. Trenchless technology is the new future of underground sewer repair.
With the growing concerns with contaminated water, tree roots growing into the sewer lines, and the ground shifting, the new trenchless technology offers a solution to the problem. The way a plumbing company would perform a job with this trenchless technology is either to pull a new pipe through the existing pipe (pipe bursting) or line the existing pipes and then expand the liner to completely fit the pipe (pipe lining). The materials hold up against tree roots, potential contamination and ground shifting.
With pipe bursting you get an entirely new mainline that will have greater flow characteristics than your original plumbing. A small hole is dug at each end of the line to be replaced and the new pipe is pulled through the pipe using a bursting device. Qualified plumbers work with these materials and can install them in less time and with similar cost to conventional digging up the yard type replacement.
If you have problems with sewer pipes in your area, there is now a solution to the continued problem. If you are a business or property owner, you can request a plumber to talk with you about this new technology.
The advantages are:
• Major excavation NOT required
• Preserves your lawn, landscaping, patio, driveway, and interior floor slab
• Fast and reliable with less down time (usually complete in 1 day)
• Environmentally safe
• Proven success and can save Money
The rain, snow, ice or wind comes and then next thing you know trees are down and or the power is out. If you live in an area that you have a personal or small community well you may still have water if you have a generator. If you are on public water it is more than likely you still have un-interrupted water service to your home or business.
Because you do not have power to the rest of your home most do not continue to use lots of water. Depending on your hot water source (gas water heater not electric) you may not even use showers or wash dishes. Toilets still flush, sinks still run for drinks and hand washing. Unless the power is out for an extend time most septics will never know the difference. For those times that power is out for many hours or even days that changes potential for problems for some of us.
If you live on a gravity system or demand septic system you would want to hold off doing all the laundry, dishes, showers etc at one time when the power comes back on, or you could “Hydraulically Overload” your septic (Put to much water in it at once). This can cause problems by pushing solids out of the tank into the pump or drain field area.
If you have a septic that has a pump with a timer on it you may cause alarms to go off or they may already be going off as soon as power comes back on. If this happens, silence the alarm at the box by pushing the button and give it a day or so to catch back up with the water usage in the home. You can tell the system has caught back up by looking to see if the red light at the box has gone back off or on some alarms the green light may be back on.
If you continue to have problems after 24 hours you may want to contact a service provider to look at your septic system.
You have had lots of family and friends at your house for one great day or another. Lots of fun, games, traditions and food. Lots of water is being used and the plumbing system is being over taxed.
What are some of the more common problems? What to do after they happen.
Septic alarm goes off during or after the party. This is very common and may just be the result of more water use than is normal for a short period of time. The system may be on a timer and if you push the silence button and leave it with out using lots more water for the next 24 hour it may catch up and the red light will go off. Calling out a service provider may just be costly and not change the need to cut back on water until the system catches up with pump out to the drain field. (A maintenance provider can pump and haul the waste away but this all costs money and may not be necessary).
Kitchen sinks backing up are a common problem because of all the food prep and washing plates and pans off. This may be a simple as cleaning out the trap under the sink or using a plunger to clean the drain. Put a plunger over the drain and put a rag in the sink next to it if a double sink. Pump the plunger up and down several times with out lifting it up off the drain. If the problem is in the traps it should clear the line and let all the water out. (A maintenance provider can come out and remove the traps and clean them and cable the line). We do not recommend liquid drain cleaner because they can be toxic to septic systems. If you are on a sewer system and liquid cleaner does not work it can be dangerous to the technician and ruin his equipment cables. Please inform any provider that you have used liquid cleaners.
Toilets backing up are also a common problem. Use of the plumbers’ friend (plunger or toilet auger) of course is some of the most common fixes. Sometimes that is not enough and the toilet simply needs removed to clear or remove the objects that may be blocking it.
These are some of the most common thing we see. We encourage you to use some basic care and you may be able to avoid some of these and other problems all together. Continue to have a great holiday and don’t let your plumbing get you down.