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The Most Common Summer Plumbing Problems & How to Spot Them

Summer brings with it longer days, backyard barbecues, and plenty of fun in the sun, but for many homeowners, it can also bring plumbing problems. The summer plumbing problems listed below are those that you’re most likely to experience during the heat of the summer along with some information about the most common symptoms, how to fix them, and (even better) how to prevent them.

A Clog in the Garbage Disposal

Between barbecues and fresh, in-season produce, many households tend to generate more food waste during the summer than any other time of year. Unfortunately, this also means that the likelihood of a garbage disposal clog is much higher. To clear a clog in the disposal, turn off its power and unplug it, then try to remove any waste jammed inside the disposal with needle-nose pliers or tongs. If you can’t break the clog free, it’s best to contact a professional at this point; continued attempts to free the clog can cause even more damage. To prevent future clogs, read the manufacturer’s instructions for your model carefully and only use the disposal for approved food waste. 

Shower Clogs (or Slow Draining)

Let’s face it: summer is downright hot, and there’s nothing like a nice shower at the end of the day to cleanse the sweat and grime that can result from all that fun in the sun. Your pets are probably even bathing more frequently during the warmer months, too, since they also like to enjoy outdoor activities with the family. Unfortunately, this can lead to more dirt, debris, and hair entering your tub and shower drains, and without intervention, it will inevitably cause a clog. 

If your shower or tub drain is slow or completely stopped up, a plunger may be able to free the mass, but be careful with using drain cleaners as they can cause damage or injury when they aren’t used correctly. If the plunger doesn’t do the trick, the best bet is to call a professional licensed plumber. Preventing future shower and tub clogs is simple enough: just use a filter over the drain that is designed to catch larger bits of debris and hair before it enters the drain system and clean it out frequently. 

Broken Water or Sewer Lines due to Tree Roots

Another issue that’s most likely to rear its ugly head in the summer months is known as tree root infiltration, and it occurs when tree roots grow into your home’s water or sewer lines and cause a break. If you notice backed-up sinks, slow draining, a drop in water pressure, or soggy areas in your lawn even though it hasn’t rained, it’s time to call a professional. Not only do these repairs require specialized expertise, but in most cities and townships, they must be carried out by licensed professionals. Preventing tree root infiltration can be tricky, but it can be done with the help of a landscaper if you know the locations of your water and sewer lines. 

Between barbecues, beach outings, pool parties, and good, old-fashioned outdoor fun, summer is many Texans’ favorite season for many reasons. Stay on the lookout for these common plumbing problems, and if you haven’t experienced them yet, be sure to take the recommended precautions to avoid them so that your summer fun isn’t interrupted by an unwelcome clog or water line break.



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