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

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5
votes
5answers
3k views

How to fix a leaky flapper valve?

I bought a house that had been sitting for some time. One of the the issues that I've discovered is that the flapper valve leaks. I've come to this conclusion by turning off the water to the tank ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Why is my third floor hot water pressure so low?

The hot water pressure in our 3rd floor shower is very low. The 2nd floor shower however, has very good pressure. The problem is not the shower head, which actually produces great pressure when ...
2
votes
2answers
9k views

How do I seal a leaking plughole fitting?

The plughole in my bathroom basin is leaking. The leak is between the plughole and the basin (i.e. through the circular hole in the basin in which the metal plughole is fitted), and it seems to me as ...
4
votes
4answers
17k views

How do I unclog my dishwasher?

Our dishwasher, which is only about 5 years old, has been finishing its cycle with quite a bit of water in the bottom that doesn't drain. The water stays that way for several days or more. Is there ...
29
votes
4answers
64k views

Why does my dishwasher back up into the sink, but running the disposal allows it to drain?

When my dishwasher runs the kitchen sink backs up. I have a two tub sink and only the side nearest the dishwasher with the garbage disposer backs up. Running the disposal for a few seconds causes the ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What are some options for a small electric water flow control valve?

I'm looking for an electric water valve for a DIY project. I need to be able to close it partially so as to control the water flow rate. The exact details of how to control it are not important; I'm ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

Why does my toilet keeps blocking and then spill out of the drain outside?

Recently out toilet has started to repeatedly block. First thing we tried was the warm water method, which worked at first. When that stopped working, and problem came back, we used caustic soda. ...
1
vote
2answers
540 views

Shutoff in shower very tight all of the sudden

I have a Symmons hot/cold shutoff in my shower. Normally, when I shut it off it goes a little beyond "12 o'clock" (more like 12:30/1:00). Anyways, I've noticed lately that it stops at exactly "12 ...
1
vote
1answer
82 views

Gledhill 450 Torrent RE

What is the top pipe connected to my Gledhill Torrent 450 RE thermal store? It comes out of the very top of the tank. Not on the side but right on the top in the centre?
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I stop a leaking tub faucet?

This tub faucet (that is probably 20+ years old) has a pretty steady drip going and I'm not sure where to start to figuring out how to stop it. (apologies for the grainy photo...just had my the ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does flushing a toilet or running a clothes washer sometimes change shower temperature?

Admittedly, this isn't something that is happening to me but I'm curious: I've heard that in some houses, flushing toilets or running a clothes washer sometimes changes the water temperature for ...
3
votes
4answers
9k views

Product recommendations for clearing a drain connected to a septic system?

Our shower drain appears to be clogged and is draining slowly. What product can I use to safely clear the drain without damaging our septic system? According to Drano's site ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there an alternative to a self-piercing saddle valve for a humidifier?

I bought and installed a whole home humidifier. The humidifier is located in my attic connected to the air exchanger. The Self-Piercing Saddle Valve is located there as well to draw water to the ...
1
vote
1answer
166 views

Draining irrigation system for the winter

What's the best way to drain an outdoor irrigation system, which includes sprinklers and drip irrigation? I've drained them as well as I could by opening a faucet in the basement (a few feet below ...
3
votes
3answers
303 views

What should I check for before turning on an OLD dish washer for the first time?

We recently purchased a house with a REALLY old dishwasher. The inspection report says that it "appears to be in working condition" but I'm paranoid of having a plumbing mess if we start using it. ...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

Can I run a dehumidifier pump to a washer stand pipe?

I have a very humid basement, in which I run a dehumidifier often. To allow for a more constant run, I purchased a dehumidifier pump. It says to run the pump out through a window or to a sink. I ...
19
votes
4answers
65k views

How do I wrap pipe threads with teflon tape?

When wrapping pipe threads with teflon tape (thread seal tape), what is the direction and recommended number of times to wrap the tape around the threads? Any other recommendations or tip/tricks when ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

What sealant should I use for the base of a sink faucet?

I guess the title says it all. =) I'm planning to replace my kitchen sink faucet. What type of sealant should I use for the base of the new sink faucet?
3
votes
6answers
65k views

Why has my bathroom cold water tap (but no others) stopped working?

The basin cold water tap in my bathroom over the last week has gone from fully flowing, to half pressure, to a dribble, then to a drip and now nothing comes out. The 3 other taps in the bathroom work ...
5
votes
3answers
10k views

Do I need a separate vent stack for my kitchen sink?

The drain line from my kitchen sink drops down through the basement, into the basement floor (Concrete), and I assume under the floor to the main sewer line. The sink tends to drain slowly. Should I ...
3
votes
2answers
8k views

Why does my toilet make a loud rumbling noise when flushed?

When I flush my toilet it makes a very loud rumbling noise that can be heard from other rooms, what could cause this? The sound cannot be heard from the bathroom. There is no sound when the tank is ...
4
votes
3answers
16k views

Why do our baseboard heating pipes make a loud banging noise after a new furnace was installed?

We had a new furnace installed about a month ago. The heating in our house is hot water baseboards. Ever since the new furnace was installed, when the heat comes on or turns off, there is a loud ...
8
votes
4answers
14k views

Why do I have blue water coming out of the faucets?

We have an upstairs bathroom that we've gutted and are having some contractors remodel. The toilet is the only thing that hasn't been touched. We had a plumber come and redo all of the source and ...
6
votes
2answers
826 views

“Dead-ending” unused plumbing

I'm planning on moving our hot water heater from its current location in our mudroom down to the basement, to live in what will become sort of a mechanical closet in the to-be-finished basement. My ...
5
votes
3answers
9k views

Can I use a PVC cleanout plug in a Cast Iron Cleanout?

There's a cleanout plug on this pipe that I simply can't get loose. I've tried liquid wrench, PB blaster, heating up the area with a torch, everything I can think of. All that's really left is to go ...
6
votes
3answers
853 views

Do narrow utility sinks exist?

I am in need of a really narrow utility sink for my garage. It can not be any wider than twelve inches. Would prefer not to get a wall-mount, but can probably install that, if necessary. Do they make ...
1
vote
1answer
245 views

Tub re-glazed and re-caulked, drippy residue from caulking

I recently had my bathtub re-glazed and re-caulked by a company that specializes in this. The tub was re-caulked 3 days after it was re-glazed by the specialist. Everything looked ok. We waited ...
6
votes
3answers
468 views

How can I locate the pump in a wet open-vented central heating system?

Lost: One Central Heating Pump. Reward offered (in reputation points ;) I have a wet open-vented central heating system, and I've turned it on after six months to find the radiators aren't getting ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

What can I use to lubricate a new kitchen faucet no longer turns?

I installed a new kitchen faucet about 6 months ago. However, it no longer turns/swivels at the base. My non-expert inspection of the problem seems to suggest that the point-of-swivel has a build up ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What can (and cannot) be put down drains that are connected to septic systems?

This might be more appropriate as a community wiki... We have a septic system and I'm extremely paranoid about what can (and cannot) be put down our sink drains. I know the general answer is ...
5
votes
4answers
29k views

What do I do about a toilet flange that is too high?

I just had the floors in my bathroom replaced and now the flange is too high. When I put the toilet on top, the front touches the floor, but the back does not. The flange and piping are PVC, and the ...
3
votes
1answer
511 views

What is the order of tasks when refitting a bathroom?

I need to completely refit my bathroom, including the following tasks: Replace an old boiler (involves removing an immersion heater from the first floor, adjusting gas supply and changing pipe work) ...
9
votes
5answers
26k views

How do I eliminate the “whooshing” sound of water running though pipes?

At every faucet and toilet in our house, when water is running, it creates a loud wooshing noise in the walls. I'm not sure how else to describe it, but it's like the normal "oh I can hear the sink or ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Why do my pipes creak 10 minutes after using them?

Our recently installed bathroom uses existing pipes that were previously plumbed into cut out sections of joists, with no cladding. Approximately 10 minutes after use there is a quite loud creaking. ...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

Why is there no hot water from sink tap unless shower or bath has been run?

We have just had a new boiler and new bathroom fitted. Shower and bath work fine - takes a minute or so for water to heat up, its a combi boiler and the boiler is on another floor to bathroom. ...
4
votes
1answer
94 views

Questions concerning dual flush converters

I'm considering purchasing dual-flush converters for our toilets and was curious if anyone had thoughts on them. Specifically, I'd like to know: Are there any major disadvantages to using them? ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Is cleaning the tub with bleach bad for the plumbing?

My wife had a brainstorm and we tried cleaning the tub with a dilute bleach solution, letting it soak overnight, and it worked very well. The tub still needs a cleaning, but the bleach loosened the ...
3
votes
1answer
706 views

Can I use a 1 1/2 vent for a toilet (3" drain) in CA (not a went vent, no other fixtures on it)?

Most of the info I have on code implies this would be OK, but one item I have says that a 1 1/2 vent can only serve 8 "non-WC" fixture units.
8
votes
2answers
10k views

How do I install a sink in a room that doesn't have a drain vent?

I want to install a sink in my attached garage where there is no existing plumbing. I will be running new water supply and drain pipes to mains behind a nearby wall. I'm concerned I will need a ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I run a copper pipe for water in an exterior wall without it freezing in the winter?

I would like to install a new hose bib on the exterior wall of my house, to be accessed on the deck. Currently, there is a hose bib on the lower level (underneath the deck) straight down from where I ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

How do I run new water lines from the basement to the second floor through a finished wall?

I am redoing an upstairs bathroom that has galvanized steel pipes currently running to it for water supply that run straight up from the basement. I am debating between using PEX or copper for the new ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Should I use thread-seal tape for steam pipe?

I am getting ready to replace the pressuretrol of my oil-burning steam boiler, which provides heat and hot water. Should I use thread-seal tape (aka. Teflon tape, PTFE tape, tape dope, or plumber's ...
3
votes
3answers
4k views

How do I get the stem out of a hose bib to replace the washer?

I have no idea why this isn't simple, perhaps because every repair project has to have some hitch in it to piss me off. I have a leaky hose bib in my back yard, so I wanted to take the sucker apart ...
4
votes
1answer
724 views

Faucet spout perlator: worth it?

I've seen the following perlator and similars (also plastic ones) on some shopping sites. They claim it can decrease water consumption up to 40%. Is it possible? Is it worth to try?
11
votes
11answers
20k views

Why is my toilet constantly backing up?

I've been in my new house for a few months now, and I end up plunging one of our two toilets about once a week - they tend to swap turns on which one gets to be finicky each week. Is there a more ...
28
votes
4answers
23k views

How do I fix a “water hammer” problem?

When I shut off a water faucet or right after the toilet tank refills after flushing, I hear a vibrating sound in my pipes. It last between one and two seconds. On the interwebs, I found out that ...
4
votes
1answer
9k views

How does one know if a well pump is “Short Cycling” or pressure tank is water logged?

Is there any calculation that can be performed to estimate the amount of water a well water pressure tank should output between pump cycles? E.g.- I have a 40 gallon pressure tank (non bladder) with ...
15
votes
3answers
13k views

How often do septic tanks typically need to be pumped?

At the risk of potentially asking an off-topic question, I'd like to better understand the maintenance of a septic tank. I've never had one before and am unfamiliar with how to manage one. My ...
6
votes
9answers
28k views

What is the advantage of PEX pinch clamp vs. crimp rings?

I just saw these for the first time today at Lowe's: The advantages I can see over the crimp style are: A single tool can work with multiple PEX sizes That single tool is cheaper than a ...
1
vote
2answers
11k views

How much should replacing septic tank lids cost, and what is involved?

My wife and I may be possibly buying a house with a septic tank. We had it inspected and the report showed that the tank was in good condition however the "tank lids" would need to be replaced. I'm ...