Questions tagged [water]

For questions relating to the water system of a home or other building, including plumbing and fixtures, water heating, water filtering and treatment, and irrigation/sprinkler systems. Questions regarding swimming pools and spas should have the additional tags "pool" or "spa".

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122
votes
10answers
54k views

How to prevent heavy rainwater from jumping the gutter?

During heavy rain, the water collects from my second floor roof and runs onto the first floor roof as it should. The problem is that since all this water is now concentrated from the second floor ...
32
votes
10answers
7k views

How do I stop a creek from eroding my steep embankment?

Behind my house there is a very steep bank/slope that leads down to a decent-sized, slow moving creek about 10 - 12 ft wide. Unfortunately it meanders right behind my property at the base of this ...
24
votes
9answers
8k views

Is there a freezing-water-resistant metal pipe?

I want to install a water outlet on the outside of my house for gardening etc. Outside temperatures here in Latvia fall to -25°C sometimes, so I cannot use a common water pipe; it would burst when the ...
23
votes
3answers
21k views

Are “1/4 turn” water supply valves more reliable than “multi-turn” valves? Or vice-versa?

Aside from personal preference, is there any reason why I would want to buy a "1/4 turn" water supply valve instead of "multi-turn valves"? Is one technology/design clearly superior than the other in ...
20
votes
5answers
85k views

Why does the shower get cold when I flush, and how can I prevent it?

When the shower is running and someone flushes a toilet, why does the shower get cold (or sometimes hot) in some houses, but not others? More importantly, would fixing that require replacing the ...
19
votes
12answers
107k views

Is it bad to turn off the water while on vacation?

I'm a little OCD when it comes to traveling. I have learned from experience that when I am away, I constantly have visions that a pipe in the wall had burst and that the water is slowly filling the ...
17
votes
10answers
9k views

Is it more economical to use hot water before boiling or to bring cold water to a boil?

Since the arrival of our newborn, we have been using the stove to boil water in order to sterilize the nipples, bottles and rings. Which got me thinking, is it more economical to start off using hot ...
17
votes
6answers
349k views

Should the water heater be shut down if the water main has to be turned off?

I have a brand new AO Smith 50gal gas water heater. Today there was a burst pipe from the cold spell we're having currently, so I had to turn off the water main to the house until the plumbers get ...
16
votes
5answers
94k views

How much water do water softeners waste?

I'm considering buying a water softener, but I heard that they waste a lot of water, and I don't really want my water bill to skyrocket. I haven't been able to find any clear indication of how much ...
16
votes
2answers
123k views

How do I fix a leaky toilet that only leaks from underneath?

I am noticing some water spots on my concrete in my (unfinished) basement. When I look up for the cause of the water I can see water dripping around the hole that is used for the sewer pipe for the ...
13
votes
7answers
5k views

What can one do with shower water?

A relative is rebuilding his bathroom. Since he has a garden and he is all about "thinking green" he was wondering if he could use the shower water (or any other) in any way, like water plants. I ...
13
votes
6answers
53k views

How can I prevent spillage from my bathtub?

Let's set the scene: The horizontal surfaces of the bathtub in my apartment are flat. We have a double shower curtain (with the waterproof bit that hangs on the inside of the tub and the fabric bit ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

What metal is most suitable for a ladder submerged in an underground water tank?

I need a ladder in my underground water tank at home, to enable easy access for cleaning and maintenance operations. The water from the underground tank is used for drinking, apart from other ...
12
votes
5answers
20k views

Is this plastic pipe connecting city water to the main line dangerous?

I bought a whole house water filter to hook up to the main water line. The plumber who came in said that he won't be able to install it because the pipe that comes from the ground hooked up to the ...
12
votes
6answers
28k views

How can I prevent water from pooling in the street in front of my house?

I have a problem with water pooling in front of my house. Between my Sprinklers and the rain there is always a puddle where my lawn meets the street. What do you think is the best way to stop this ...
12
votes
1answer
1k views

What device can remotely close a water main?

Trial run of http://meta.homeautomation.stackexchange.com/questions/17/are-questions-asking-for-home-automation-hardware-allowed, which got an overwhelmingly positive response. Answers must be ...
12
votes
4answers
70k views

What would cause the water pressure to be too high for just a second?

Lately when I turn on any faucet in my house the water comes rushing out at about twice the normal pressure for about half a second and then drops to normal pressure. I am worried the pressure is ...
11
votes
7answers
5k views

Is there a good way to test water quality in your house?

What are the best ways to test for water quality in your house? The water is from a well, not town water. Are there any products that can continuously test the water coming in (versus manually ...
11
votes
5answers
46k views

How can I add a carbonated water tap in my kitchen?

I love carbonated water, but am sick and tired of buying it in bottles. There are home water-carbonating appliances like SodaStream, but I prefer not to have another countertop appliance. Can I ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

What is This Thin Metal Wire?

Do you know what this thin metal wire is? It's attached to the water line in my garage. It looks like it was cut off at the end. I can't see where the other end of the cable ends up - it runs behind ...
10
votes
5answers
8k views

Is it possible to collect rain water from a roof for drinking use?

For a re-roofing or new build, I was pondering the possibility of capturing and purifying water for drinking use. Are there good examples of this? What roofing materials should be used or avoided? ...
10
votes
12answers
83k views

Why might our washing machine cause our clothes to smell damp when dry?

Recently we've noticed that our clothes smell damp once dried. It doesn't matter if we tumble-dry them, hang them outside or hang them indoors. This leads me to believe it's our washing machine. We ...
10
votes
5answers
48k views

Did the plumber hook up my water heater backwards?

I just had a plumber install a new 50 gallon water heater, but the cold water pipe is installed to the hot side (the left pipe when facing the front of the heater) and the hot water pipe is installed ...
10
votes
2answers
32k views

How should I drain water from a basement dehumidifier?

Our basement has had difficulty with water in the past, from intrusions through the side (fixed by gutters) and chimneys (fixed by chimney caps). Most recently, however, water has been collecting on ...
10
votes
4answers
295 views

Reliable, inexpensive way to be notified of a water leak?

I have a few places in my home that I really, really don't want water to be. I've had bad experiences with water in the past (read: whole-house flooding from an upstairs toilet valve), and I'd like to ...
9
votes
3answers
669 views

Do I need to do anything for my external spigots during a short hard freeze?

Like the questioner in Do I need to do anything to protect my pool during a rare freeze? I live in central florida and its going to be a hard freeze tonight. Do I need to let the spigots drip or cover ...
9
votes
2answers
911 views

Identifying My Main Water Shutoff Valve / Setup

I've owned my first home for a few years now, but have never truly known where my main water shutoff valve was, mainly because I've never really known how to identify it. I've looked around my utility ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

What are my gutter guard options?

As I mentioned in a prior post, I'm planning to add some gutters to my house. I see that there's wide variety of gutter guards available and was curious which ones are better? As far as I can tell,...
9
votes
6answers
115k views

Why will my pilot light on the gas water heater not stay lit for more than 15 minutes?

The pilot light went out on my gas water heater. I followed the instructions and had it lit three times now for about 15 minutes each time but it wont stay lit. Not sure what to do at this point?
9
votes
4answers
57k 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 ...
9
votes
4answers
56k views

How can I repair a flexible hot water supply hose that is leaking at the nut?

The hot water supply hose under my sink started leaking after I replaced the popup drain on the sink. Apparently I disturbed the hose in some way. It is leaking from just above the nut where it ...
8
votes
3answers
17k views

Are hot water returns worth putting in?

Once I saw on an episode of This Old House that they were putting in hot water return lines: pipes that recirculate idle hot water back to the heater so you get hot water right away, instead of ...
8
votes
4answers
21k views

Why is the first shower of the day is colder than the second?

Description Since I've moved into this house, I've noticed that the first shower of the day is colder than the any subsequent shower. More specifically, if no hot water has been used for a while, ...
8
votes
4answers
9k views

What sort of things should one look for in a water-softener?

Hard water (from a well) at the house, and I was wondering what to look for in terms of getting a water-softener, or things to avoid.
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does a water line behind wall of home have capped off areas above supply area that heads out to wall?

I couldn't find an answer to this question using Google. I think it's because I am not sure how to ask the question properly. I am not a plumber but I have seen in my new construction house with cpvc ...
8
votes
5answers
147k views

Water from bathroom faucet smells like rotten eggs

The sink is in the powder room on the main floor of our house. When I turn the water on it is fine for a few seconds then it smells horribly for about 3-4 more seconds then it is back to normal. It is ...
7
votes
5answers
6k views

How to turn a pump on or off from any of 12 switches

I have a water pump at my home that I want to connect to 12 switches, so that each one of them can turn the water-pump on/off. Can it be done? Thank you!
7
votes
8answers
104k views

Can a wet vac be effectively used as a pump?

Can a wet vac effectively be used as a pump to move water? I figure if a basement floods, that this can serve as double duty.
7
votes
6answers
3k views

Should I replace fallen gutters?

This past winter a heavy snow fall ripped two sets of gutters off our house, and I haven't had a chance to re-hang them yet. One is over our back door and it's really annoying having the running off ...
7
votes
7answers
71k views

Is there a way to trace water pipes through walls?

I recently purchased my house and I am trying to find my internal valve to turn on my external faucet. Unfortunately the previous owner put in a bathroom in over where the water line enters the house ...
7
votes
3answers
27k views

What would happen if I connected a dishwasher to a hot water supply line?

What will happen if I connect hot water to a dish water that is not designed to take in hot water? Will it break? Or will I just not be able to use the cold programs?
7
votes
1answer
4k 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 ...
7
votes
2answers
828 views

When do tankless water heaters need to be descaled?

I had a Bosch tankless natural gas water heater that stopped working with C7 and EA error codes and the plumber indicated that the unit had failed due to water getting into the internals like the fan ...
7
votes
5answers
91k views

Why does my toilet make a high pitched whine when it refills?

When my toilet is refilling with water,it makes a very high pitched whine. Any suggestions on how to resolve?
7
votes
3answers
18k views

How do I remove (food) oil stain from a wood table?

Spilled some oily salad dressing on a wood table that was not varnished or sealed in any way. Not sure the type of wood - it almost looks like teak, but I don't believe it is. We used water on the ...
7
votes
1answer
11k views

What to do if my sump is bone-dry?

My wife has been suffering the past two years with severe asthma symptoms (never had asthma before this). She's been advised that it's probably mold. We asked a company to look for moisture ...
7
votes
1answer
9k views

If the iron levels in our home's water are too high, how do we adjust them?

Although I haven't tested the actual water quality in our house, we often get orange colored stains in toilets and around drains where water has evaporated - which I would assume are from high iron ...
7
votes
4answers
58k views

How do I cut and cap copper water tubing cheaply and safely?

In my basement I have copper water pipes that look like they hooked up to an old shower. Now they don't hook up to anything. I want to prune these pipes where they come off the main water line (so I ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Options for fixing outside cement staircase?

We have a below-grade basement and a exit door. There are concrete steps to the door, parallel to the house (so on your right is the house) and on the left is a brick wall. The steps appear to have ...
7
votes
5answers
24k views

What can I do about a window well that is filling up with water from below the surface?

I have 2 covered basement window wells on the side of my house. When it rains heavily, they fill up with water from beneath the surface. There are 4 downspouts from the gutters on our roof. They run ...