Plumbing is a system that is composed of pipes and other fixtures. This system is responsible for delivering and distributing potable, the technical term for ‘drinkable’, water to a house or place of business. Plumbing also makes sure that waterborne waste is removed. It is an essential part of any structure because it fulfils a function that is essential for the sustenance of life: access to water.
The importance of plumbing
In Australia, such importance is placed upon plumbing that the country even has its own professional body focusing on plumbing, the Institute of Plumbing Australia Inc. or IPA. A group of professionals came together in 1954 with the primary objective of promoting plumbing as a profession with high standards. In this way, they promote and further the science and technology surrounding plumbing, as well as licensing plumbing professionals.
Plumbing is an essential part of everyone’s life, and the Australia government acknowledged this by enacting the Plumbing Code of Australia. This code makes sure that every establishment in the country follows a set of rules in the construction and maintenance of different types of plumbing services. Becoming a plumber is also isn’t easy. Every plumber has to undergo training to master the skill and to ensure understanding of the code mandated by the government. In fact, before becoming a plumber, they have to go through the following:
- An apprenticeship with a registered professional
- Enrolment in a class-based program
- Completion of a certificate in plumbing (this can take three to four years to complete)
Of course, extra classes have to be taken by those interested in pursuing a specific area of plumbing. The bottom line is, becoming a plumber is not an easy task to do, which makes sense because plumbing is such an essential part of living. In fact, it has been so deeply ingrained in our everyday lives that you often don’t even notice that it is in place.
Plumbing problems in Australia and the downside of DIY plumbing
Some of the most common plumbing problems in Australia include:
- Continuous or persistent leaks
- Clogged drainage
- Hot water supply issues
- Unappealing sewer smell
- Weak water pressure
While some of these problems may seem easy to fix, it’s still best to call up a licensed plumber from Newcastle to do the repairs for you instead of opting for DIY.
The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) defines “do-it-yourself”, or more commonly “DIY”, as making, fixing, or maintaining an item by relying on your own skills over contacting and hiring a professional. There are quite a few downsides to “do-it-yourself” repairs. In fact, AIHW released a report in 2017 about injuries sustained due to DIY. The study covers injuries reported from 2013 until 2014.
According to the report, around 3,300 people were hospitalised in Australia from 2013 to 2014 because of DIY-related injuries. This is equivalent to a rate of 13 cases per 100,000 people. This total number includes people from 15 years of age and older. The same study notes that four in five DIY injury cases involved male patients, this is 81% of the total number.
In terms of age group, the 65 to 74 age group reported the most DIY-related injuries, which is further broken into 597 cases involving males while 137 cases involved females. This age group’s number is quite similar to the next-youngest age group who are those aged 55 to 64. This second age group had 590 DIY-related injuries involving males while 130 cases involved females.
When it comes to the leading causes of DIY injuries, falling from a ladder is the most commonly reported with 1,262 (38%) people experiencing this unfortunate event, followed by power tool and household machinery accidents (899 people, 27%). When it comes to the type of injury, more than half (63%) of falls resulted in a fracture, followed by an open wound with 8% and an injury to the head such as a concussion at 7%. For those who experienced an injury due to a power tool or household machinery accident, their injuries are most often open wounds (31%) or fractures (23%).
Zeroing in on those who reported injuries due to power tools and household machinery, the study further illustrates the following as the most common equipment used in an injury:
- Power saw with 283 number of cases – This often resulted in partial or complete amputation of a finger (11%).
- Power grinder with 216 number of cases – When this tool is involved, the most common injury is sprain or strain on the wrist and hand (12%).
- Chainsaw with 131 number of cases – Similar to the powered grinder, using a chainsaw for a DIY repair commonly resulted in a sprained or strained wrist and/or hand (8%).
With these numbers in mind, you should think twice about doing a DIY rather than getting a professional for your plumbing problems.
Hire a licensed plumber for these plumbing problems
The numbers above clearly show how dangerous DIY repairs can become. When it comes to the plumbing problems below, skip the DIY and go straight to hiring a Newcastle licensed plumber.
1. Drainage problems
Most every household has a plunger in the bathroom or laundry to deal with blocked drains. However, if the plunger isn’t fixing the problem, this can mean that the problem is already further down in your plumbing system. Call a licensed plumber immediately to get started on fixing it. Some of the issues that will also indicate the need for a plumber include:
- Your bathtub, the sink, or other fixtures are not draining normally too.
- Soapy water is coming up from the drains or even in the tub whenever you are washing your clothes.
- The water level rises inside the toilet when you use the tap.
- There is bubbling in the toilet when you use the tap.
- Water is coming out of your sink or bathtub whenever you flush the toilet.
- More than one sink is taking too slow to drain.
- If you notice that your water has a bad sewage smell, then call a licensed plumber immediately.
2. A damp garden or lawn
A garden or lawn may be damp after a rain, this is normal. However, if an area in your lawn has not been drying out, then you might have a plumbing problem on your hands. This will most likely be due to a broken pipe, and you should not even attempt to fix it especially if it involves underground pipes. A trained and licensed plumber will be able to accurately detect the source of the problem and repair the damaged pipe.
3. Damp floors or other damp areas under your house
Burst pipes are not only found outdoors or in your garden, but they may also be under your floors. Don’t forget that water pipes are also located under your house and pipe bursts can happen anywhere. If the water pipes under your floors have burst, then this can become an indoor problem too.
If you notice that your floors have suddenly become damp, it’s likely that you have a broken pipe. Try and check for damp spots under your sink, too, to make sure that there’s not leaking pipe there. Make sure to call a professional plumber immediately in these kinds of situation. Avoiding a leaky pipe will just worsen the situation and may result in more money spent on home repairs.
4. Low water flow rate
Low water pressure is most commonly a result of sediment build-up in your water system. A quick solution is to remove and then rinse your aerator. However, if this fix does not improve the water flow, then your problem goes beyond the aerator. The low water flow may be because of a fractured or a broken pipe.
The situation can get worse if the broken pipe is not visible. This is because it may damage the foundation of your house. In this case, make sure you have a professional plumber in mind.
5. Hot water system problems
When you install a hot water system in your house or office, the expectation is that it will last for a long time. But, it’s always best to keep in mind that these fixtures can sometimes break. The general rule of thumb is that hot water systems should last you for about 10 years. To be safe, do a quick inspection of your hot water system from time to time and check for the following:
- A leak in the hot water system – This will usually appear at the outlet and inlet valves. Should you notice a leak, make sure to have it repaired immediately to avoid exacerbating the problem. If the problem gets worse, you may end up replacing the whole system.
- Water that has an abnormal colour – This can be an indication of corrosion inside of your water tank.
- Unusual noises
- Frequent water system repairs – This may be an indication that it is time to have your water system replaced.
6. Leaking faucets
Sometimes, a leaking faucet can be a minor problem. When there is more than one leaking faucet, however, you might be dealing with a more serious problem. Multiple leaky faucets may be due to a water pressure problem. Contact your go-to plumber to identify the source of the problem and have it fixed immediately. Remember that one leaky faucet can already waste as much as 20,000 litres of water in one year.
7. Damaged water line
When water lines are installed in your house or your office, they are expected to a last for a long time. But they are not exempted from experiencing wear and tear in the long run. It’s best to have them inspected and repaired once in a while. Some indicators that your water line has a problem include:
- Water pressure dropping off over a span of a few months. This might mean that your water line has a lime scale build-up.
- The presence of leaks or chalky substance on the parts that are above the ground. Check for signs of corrosion too.
8. Stormwater drainage issues
Australia’s stormwater is treated differently than the wastewater that’s coming from your house. Typically, stormwater is not treated before getting into water supplies and waterways. This means that your stormwater and rainwater drainage have to be installed and maintained properly. Otherwise, you run the risk of having chemicals like fertiliser and pesticides seeping into our waterways. Any problems with your stormwater drainage not only pose a risk of leak or flooding, but it also threaten the environment.
To avoid any mishaps with your stormwater drainage, make sure only to hire a professional and licensed plumber to do the design, installation, and maintenance of your stormwater drainage.
These are just some of the plumbing problems that will definitely need professional help from a licensed Newcastle plumber. Avoid any injuries or more money spent by going straight to a trained plumber than choosing to do DIY repairs.
For any plumbing repairs, contact the Green Planet Plumbing.
Convinced you need a professional instead of going the DIY route for your plumbing problems? Make sure to only hire the service of a reliable Newcastle plumbing expert. This way, you can be sure of the following:
- High-quality service
- Professional experience and efficient work performance
- Workers are insured
- Most value for your money
If you’re in the Newcastle area, then Green Planet Plumbing should be your go-to partner when it comes to any plumbing repairs. Whether there’s a clogged drainage, a toilet that needs to be repaired or even hot water problems at your house or place of business, Green Planet Plumbing can get the job done for you.
We provide fixed quotes so you won’t need to worry about any surprise charges. Our workmanship is 100% guaranteed! We also provide 24/7 emergency plumbing services. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 02 4911 9402 for a consultation.