Not every plumbing issue is classified as an emergency. While a plumbing problem may be frustrating, it could be possible to wait a couple of days until it is convenient to call in a plumber. Unfortunately, plumbing doesn’t usually follow a strict timetable, and although it is preferable to schedule repairs, sometimes a call for emergency plumbing
is needed. Before you incur an added expense, we will explore what constitutes an emergency.
There’s No Time to Wait:
One of the most obvious factors to determine if you need emergency repairs is if it simply can’t wait. If you have shut off the water supply to your home, has it brought the problem to a halt? For example, if you have a water leak, shutting off the water should stop the problem, but you need to consider how long it would be comfortable to go without your water. If the leak has happened at 3 am on a Tuesday, it is likely that you can wait until normal business hours. On the other hand, if the problem occurs on a holiday or on the weekend, you should avoid a wait and get the problem fixed. Generally, if it will take more than a couple of hours for a regular plumbing service, it is probably a good idea to call an emergency plumber.
There’s Continuing Damage:
In some cases, just shutting off your water supply is not going to help the problem. If you are forced to wait longer, there could be continuing damage. Another scenario is when waiting would cause significant disruption in your household. If the problem is going to cost you sleep before your workday or it will prevent you from performing basic tasks such as preparing a meal or using the toilet, the additional cost of an emergency service will be well worth it.
There is Danger:
Finally, if there is any hint that the plumbing problem may cause a hazard to you or your family, it should be considered an emergency. For example, if a sewer line is backing up into your home, it will not only cause damage, but poses a health risk. The wastewater entering your home may contain bacteria and other potentially hazardous elements that should be cleared as quickly as possible. Another example is if you believe your water heater or system is leaking gas. This is obviously highly dangerous and needs immediate attention.
In many cases, whether your plumbing issue is a plumbing emergency is a judgment call. If the situation can be managed until normal working hours, it may be preferable to avoid the additional expense of an emergency call out. If the situation requires attention critically to mitigate property damage or allow basic tasks, then it should be considered an emergency
. Whether you have a minor issue or a large problem, it is a good idea to shut off your water supply. Even a small leak can turn into a real disaster if it is allowed to continue. Many fixtures such as toilets have a connected valve to isolate the supply, but if you have major flooding or a large leak, you may need to turn off supply to the whole house, which will be a massive disruption and need attention quickly.
By Giovanni Longo President Flood Brothers Plumbing
Giovanni Longo is a 3rd generation master plumber who has been practicing his craft and trade in the greater Los Angeles area for well over a decade and a half. A plumbing and hydraulics-engineering innovator, Giovanni’s particular world-class expertise focuses on dealing with challenging sewer system designs as well as resolving complex commercial and residential draining issues. As a certified Flood Mitigation expert, he is also well versed in a wide variety of water damage and remediation solutions.