For questions about the supply and removal of water and liquid waste.

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4
votes
2answers
754 views

Can (and should) I replace the hose connecting a cold water expansion vessel to the cold water supply myself?

We recently had a small flood in our apartment. I found that the metal-sheathed rubber hose connecting the cold water supply to the blue cold water expansion vessel had a wide split in it. The water ...
3
votes
1answer
4k views

What's the purpose of a cold water expansion vessel?

My rented flat (in the UK) has 2 expansion tanks behind the boiler, one red, one blue. From googling around I can find lots of references to hot water expansion vessels; the purpose seems to be to ...
5
votes
3answers
22k views

How high can I stretch my washing machine drain hose?

The waste hose through which the water is removed from my washing machine is inserted into a vertical pipe extending from the floor with a U shape at its end. The problem is that there is foam coming ...
4
votes
1answer
11k views

How to fix a bathtub faucet that leaks only when the shower runs?

I just moved into an apartment and the faucet in the tub is fine when all of the water is off. It leaks when I turn on the water and switch it to the shower head. What could be the problem? It's a ...
1
vote
0answers
49 views

Funny Plumbing sound [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do I eliminate the “whooshing” sound of water running though pipes? Good morning, just a quick question for you, if you can help me? Just recently there ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

Does PEX leach BPA when used for hot water plumbing?

Would using PEX for potable hot water result in having Bisphenol A (BPA) leached into the water? Does PEX have BPA content?
3
votes
1answer
2k views

What could cause low pressure in both hot and cold water lines after flushing hot water tank?

I just drained my water heater to flush out any sediment that may have accumulated at the bottom of the tank. When I filled it back up, I suddenly am lacking water pressure, both cold and hot, at all ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

How can I fix a sink drain stop which won't hold water?

I have a bathroom sink & fixture which are about a year old. The drain has worked fine, until about a month ago. Recently, any water I try to hold in the sink slowly leaks out. This is mildly ...
1
vote
3answers
722 views

How to connect primer tubing to non-laundry faucet?

The previous owner of my house didn't know what the trap primer tubing was when he installed an expensive kitchen faucet and stainless sink in the laundry room, so left the tubing dangling. Is there a ...
3
votes
2answers
9k views

What might be causing our cistern to fill very slowly?

We have a toilet cistern with a concentric float valve fill mecanism. Earlier this week, it suddenly started to take much longer to fill after flushing (ca. 15 minutes instead of less than 1 minute ...
4
votes
1answer
847 views

Is there a shower drain pipe in this picture?

I'm certain the 3" pipe on the left is the toilet drain (it is about 12" form the wall and has a rounded cap on it). I'm guessing the shorter 2" capped pipe on the right, up against the wall, is the ...
1
vote
1answer
243 views

Flood safe/auto-shutoff hose triggering for no reason

The hot water line to our kitchen sink has one of those flood safe/auto-shutoff hoses. It has started triggering and cutting off the water whenever we turn the hot water on more than half way. I took ...
1
vote
3answers
682 views

How can I find a replacement aerator for this faucet?

We have the following faucet, which is missing an aerator. I don't see any identifying marks, nor anything to unscrew at the end of the faucet (i.e., it doesn't seem to be a standard screw-in ...
2
votes
1answer
413 views

How do I increase the capacity of a small humidifier?

I'm trying to increase the humidity in our house, as it gets extremely dry in the winter. I have a small second hand humidifier that I have modified to suit my interests, however there is one thing ...
3
votes
4answers
5k views

What is the most effective way to remove epoxy plumbing putty?

At some point in the past, I used epoxy plumbing putty to seal a joint going into the faucet on my bathtub. It's now leaking again (seeping out past the putty) and I'd like to get the putty off so ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a way to increase toilet flush pressure to prevent clogs?

My toilet seems to be a little, well, underpowered when it comes to flushing. It often "chokes" and "coughs" when flushing only liquid, which seems to indicate that the water pressure isn't high ...
8
votes
1answer
385 views

How can I stop a running toilet?

I have a really weird issue: my toilet is running water, but it's not in the tank. It seems like there's a neverending small flow of water entering the bowl of the toilet from the left side of the ...
2
votes
1answer
606 views

What does the Plumbing Code say about securing a bathtub faucet to the studs?

My son is renting an apartment. It looks as if the bathtub faucet (spout and valvehandle) are only secured by the grout of the tile and haven't been properly secured at all to the studs. I know that ...
8
votes
1answer
9k views

Why can't SharkBite plumbing connectors be sold in CA and VT?

I've spent the last couple of weeks replacing my copper hydronic heat in the house. I'm now a convert to PEX and SharkBite connectors. I had to run out tonight to Home Depot to pick up one more ...
13
votes
4answers
835 views

Is plunging a toilet without a plunger a good tip or a horrible idea?

Read this elsewhere and personally, I thought it was a bad bad bad idea, but I wanted to put this out there to see if I might be mistaken: I learned a quick tip from a handyman on how to create a ...
0
votes
2answers
197 views

What is the minimum drill voltage/power required for a plumbing snake bit?

In particular this one Cobra Products 25Ft Power Drain Snake. Will a 12-volt cordless be strong enough?
3
votes
1answer
11k views

How can I clean hard water buildup from pipes?

I've basically confirmed that my overall plumbing problems are down to hard water buildup. My softener has been out of action for about a month or two (waiting on a part), so I have at least that much ...
3
votes
1answer
517 views

How can I fix a broken shower elbow?

The shower elbow in the shower broke off at the copper pipe in the wall, leaving some of the plastic inside the copper pipe's threading. There seems to be some sort of sealant. How might you go about ...
3
votes
3answers
9k views

How do I replace a broken bathtub drain?

I am trying to replace my bathtub drain however the cross bars have broken off so I am unable to unscrew it from the tub. How can I unscrew it? EDIT: This is approximately the product I am trying ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I fix a leaky spigot on a rain barrel?

I created a rain barrel using an old plastic 55 gallon barrel and a brass spigot. I drilled a half-inch hole in the side of the barrel for the spigot, wrapped some plumbers tape around the threads, ...
4
votes
1answer
660 views

Should central heating pipes through internal brickwork have insulation?

My house has old (large diameter) steel central heating pipes. These travel through the basement before passing up through the house. My concern is that when they pass through internal walls they are ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Should I test the water in my house for contamination?

I live in a house that was built in the 1930's. I'm paranoid that the old pipes for hot and cold water(for the kitchen, shower, etc..) are contaminating the water. Is this something I should be ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

What tools are required to unclog sink drain with garbage disposal?

So yesterday someone in my family put some celery stalks (with the hard stems included) down the garbage disposal, after which our drain drained much slower. I tried filling up the sink with water ...
2
votes
1answer
689 views

Snake drain gun vs compressed gas drain gun vs liquid - which is better for what?

I borrowed a powered snake style drain gun for some toilets and shower stalls, from an HVAC guy who said that liquid drain cleaners were next to useless. The short version is that the drain cleaner ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

Do pressure reducing valves also function as check/one-way valves?

If installing a pressure reducing valve, is there any sense in installing a one-way check valve in series, or would it be redundant? (i.e. does the PRV also act as a one-way valve?)
5
votes
1answer
4k views

Why is my kitchen faucet dripping even after water is shut-off?

Kitchen faucet (two separate handles, pull-out hose, Price-Pfister Catalina model) is dripping from the faucet itself. I shut the water from below the sink, determined it's a cold water, unscrewed the ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I unclog a clogged swimming pool vacuum?

I have a swimming pool which I was vacuuming the other day. Unfortunately, I accidentally vacuumed some larger items (leaves, paper, etc) which caused the whole mechanism to clog, i.e., I can no ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

Should a circulator pump be installed on the supply or return of a forced hot water heating system?

I currently have a forced hot water heating system with 3 zones, all of which have the circulator pump on the supply side of the line. I need to install a 4th zone and am being told that putting the ...
2
votes
1answer
277 views

Why would the pressure in my kitchen faucet drop overnight?

The kitchen faucet has just noticeably decreased in pressure. No leaks anywhere. It did get a lot colder overnight, but that's the only thing that changed. Any ideas?
4
votes
3answers
145 views

What's a good entry-level text/video on residential plumbing?

Anything for the near-absolute beginner? I've removed the 180-degree angle dirt trap under my sink and cleaned a pipe with a motorized snake, but that's about it. Any book recommendations would be ...
4
votes
1answer
816 views

Do I need to install the grounding clamp on a water softener if both input and output are PEX?

We are installing a Whirlpool water softener in a new home with PEX water lines. The installation manual says to place the supplied ground clamp over both inlet and outlet water lines. As I mentioned ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

When replacing a supply line to a house in Houston, TX, what is the best material to use?

A house in Houston, TX (southern "sun belt" climate, no frost, but flexible clay soils) has a Polybutalyne supply line running from the meter to the house. It's already burst once and been repaired, ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Why do the water pipes around my water meter vibrate when water is flowing?

I have a problem where there is a vibration in the cold water pipes whenever water is flowing (i.e. a tap is running, just after the toilet has been flushed etc.). The vibration appears to be focused ...
14
votes
5answers
50k views

Why do my toilets flush slowly and often incompletely?

I have three toilets that all flush slowly and incompletely. I've adjusted the chain to ensure the flap raises completely. I've raised the float to ensure the tank fills nice and high. Yet I have this ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

Why is my toilet humming?

After one of my toilets is flushed, and it fills the bowl back up, I sometimes get a loud thrumming/humming noise. It is the flusher stacky thingy making the noise. I turned down the volume of ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Do I need to replace my hot water tank's pressure release valve?

Recently we had an extended water outage. When water came back, pressure in the lines was much higher. The hot water heater started leaking from the pressure release valve and after flipping it a ...
6
votes
7answers
30k views

How do I retrieve a detached plunger from a bathtub drain?

I have an old bathtub drain assembly that is similar to this: As far as I can tell, the linkage broke off completely due to old age. If I unscrew the trip lever and cover, it's not attached to ...
0
votes
1answer
4k views

Why does my kitchen sink smell when the washing machine is running, and what can I do about it?

I live in a flat, on the second floor. When we run the washing machine (which is connected to the kitchen sink's plumbing) it gurgles a lot and often produces a nasty smell. Why is this, and how can I ...
7
votes
2answers
34k views

What is causing a whistling sound coming from my upstairs bathroom?

My upstairs shower is causing a high-pitched whistling sound when it's running and there is a showerhead attached. If I remove the showerhead, but keep the water flowing, the whistling noise stops. It ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Why does my kitchen faucet suddenly have too much water pressure?

I have a single lever Kohler kitchen faucet. The water comes out with so much pressure that if I am trying to rinse anything it makes water spray everywhere. The faucet has not always done this. Is ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I realign copper water pipes after cutting?

I cut a 1/2" copper pipe to insert a tee fitting a which will eventually go to a Pex line for an outdoor tap. The copper pipe was vertical, and when I completed the cut I found that the pipe was ...
6
votes
8answers
26k views

How can I prevent or remedy “bio slime” accumulation in a sink drain?

The drain in the sink which we use for mouthwash consistently gets clogged by a very repugnant slime. I've tried all the common drain unclogging products (Drano, Liquid Plumber) as well as some ...
1
vote
5answers
4k views

Can I cut or cover a sewer cleanout pipe in front of my house?

I have a PVC pipe sticking up in front of my house, in a flower-bed area. It's 20 inches high and 5 inches in diameter. As I understand, it is a sewer clean-out pipe. It's rather unsightly and I've ...
3
votes
1answer
8k views

What's that dripping sound I hear in the attic whenever we turn on the water?

Obviously it has something to do with water, but I haven't been able to track it down. Basically, whenever someone turns on the water in my house, I hear a dripping sound coming from the ceiling ...
4
votes
2answers
900 views

What do you call this old pipe to bath tap join and how do I remove it?

I'm trying to replace the bath taps. I'm at the point where i've removed one, but can't get the 2nd one off. They are connected differently (go figure). See attached image: As i'm new to plumbing i ...