The 5 Most Common Plumbing Problems for Homeowners

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There is nothing as frustrating as a gushing pipe or clogged toilet in the middle of the night when help is hard to get. But at least you are not alone in experiencing these and many other problems. Here are the five most common plumbing problems that homeowners face, along with some helpful tips on what to do.

1. Low water pressure

Water was gushing out of your taps and shower but all of a sudden, some or all of the taps experience a painfully slow water pressure. It is a frustrating experience. There could be several possible issues causing the problem.

One common problem is a build up of mineral deposits inside the tap, especially in a part called the aerator. To solve this, you just need to remove the aerator and clean it. It could also be your taps have gotten old and need a replacement. If the problem is in your shower, consider buying a new high-pressure showerhead.

It could also be that there is a major leak somewhere along the plumbing system. For this, you need a professional plumber to find the leak and seal it.

2. Running toilet

A running toilet is one of the biggest wastes of water not to mention the noisy nuisance it is. Immediately you notice the problem, it is essential that you get a plumber to resolve it quickly to keep your water bills down.

There are various possible reasons why your toilet is running. The toilet arm and ball could be broken, the flapper could have cracks or the chain could be working incorrectly. Get a plumber immediately otherwise the problem could prove to be costly to repair later on.

3. Clogged drains

If the water in the sink or bathroom floor is draining slowly or not draining at all, the drain might be clogged. This could be a problem with the pipes themselves or there could be foreign objects blocking the floor of water. It is especially common for bathroom and kitchen drains to get clogged with foreign objects.

Instead of rushing to buy an over-the-counter drain cleaner, call a plumber to resolve the problem quickly and efficiently.

4. Dripping tap

The drip-drop noise can be very annoying, especially when you are trying to get some work done and the tap just won’t stay quiet. Most homeowners ignore the problem until too much water has been wasted and your water bill goes high.

Get a plumber to check out the issue immediately. You may need to replace a part of the tap or the entire faucet.

5. Leaky pipes

If you notice moisture on your walls or wet spots on the ceiling or floor, the problem could be a leaky pipe. It is essential that a plumber diagnose and resolve the problem as quickly as possible.

Master Plumber Auckland

To resolve all your plumbing issues, call the best plumbers in Auckland. Watkins Plumbing has years of experience helping homeowners with their plumbing problems. Our master drainlayers in Auckland and expert plumbers are the best around. We also offer steel roofing in Auckland for both commercial and residential clients.

Visit our website at www.watkinsplumbing.co.nz to get a free quote.

Plumbing Considerations for a New Home Build

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How exciting! You are in the planning stages for your new home build! No doubt your head is spinning with all those glossy images of designer homes that you have been dreaming about building for years. There is much to consider and you will have many decisions to make over the coming weeks and months. You will get to choose colour schemes, house layout, number of bedrooms, orientation on your section, flooring, wall colours, garden layout and much more. Before you can think about decorating your new home and accessorising with cushions and artwork you need to get some of the practical decisions out of the way first.

With proper planning and preparation at the design stage many potential problems can be avoided. Unexpected issues during a new build can cause delays and add costs, as can making changes once your build has already started. Engaging professionals to help with designing your new home is key to a smooth process. Get recommendations from friends and family for architects or builders that they have used.

Often building firms will have teams of professionals they prefer to work with and recommend. A new home build requires designers, builders, plumbers and electricians to all work together. It can be a very stressful job coordinating so many different trades on one build. Project managers assigned to a build are experienced in making sure all aspects run smoothly and there is minimal down time or overlap.

A new home build can be selected from plans; this is usually a cheaper option than designing from scratch. Some customisation may be available without incurring additional fees. However, if you decide to completely rearrange the internal working and swap the kitchen for the master bathroom for example then there will be significant implications for the plumbing works associated with the plans. There is a lot of groundwork and preparation that needs to be in place at the foundation laying stage as everything else goes on top!

Questions to ask your master plumber and design team

  • What type of hot water cylinder system will my family need to suit our lifestyle and daily requirements?
  • Will I need a filtration, storage or pump system?
  • Can drainage be connected to mains or do we need a septic tank system?
  • Can the grey water be recycled to flush toilets or water the garden?
  • Can we connect to the council mains water supply or do we need a well or a bore?
  • Can we have bathrooms on the second floor?
  • Can we integrate a solar powered hot water heating system?
  • Can we fit in two family-sized bathrooms and a master en suite?

The plumbing is integral to your new home in Auckland, New Zealand. Get it wrong in the planning stages and it will not be easy or cheap to fix at a later date. Need a master plumber in Waitakere or Auckland? Contact Watkins Plumbing Services via their website www.watkinsplumbing.co.nz. Their team of master plumbers are specialists in plumbing and heating  Auckland wide. Watkins Plumbing Services can assist with all your plumbing and drainage needs and will work closely with the rest of your design team.

The Biggest DIY Plumbing Mistakes

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Attempting simple plumbing fixes around the home can save you money in the short term. However, you may cause damage you don’t know about or make a problem worse and then have to call in the professionals to sort out the initial problem plus your fixes! Rectifying DIY plumbing attempts can end up costing you much more than the original plumbing job in the first place!

Failing to turn off the water!

One of the first and most common mistakes that DIY plumbers make is failing to shut off the water supply before attempting a repair. This can lead to leaks and floods and cause significant damage to your pipes, fittings and home. Some fixtures have an internal valve that can halt the supply of water to a sink or hot water cylinder for example.

If you cannot locate a shut off valve near the area you need to work in you will need to turn off the water mains to your entire house at the stopcock. This is disruptive and you should make sure you don’t affect any neighbouring properties. If you fail to turn off the water supply while attempting plumbing repairs you could end up with water getting into your property and damaging fixtures and furniture.

Attempting to clear blocked drains

Many homeowners overuse chemical cleaners which can damage pipework and cause leaks along the lines. Chemical cleaners do not work on solid blockages like hair build-up. Harsh chemicals can be caustic (burn skin) and harmful to children and pets. They should be used sparingly and with caution. Natural alternatives include bicarbonate of soda and vinegar. Just because you can buy drain rods from the local DIY store doesn’t mean you should attempt to use them if you are not a professional master plumber. If rods are used incorrectly you can make the blockage worse or even cause more damage.

Attempting to fix a slow drain and remove a blockage by taking pipework apart may seem like a quick fix but it is easy to damage fittings, especially if you don’t have the correct tools for the job. Another mistake DIY plumbers make is attempting to clear a blockage with high water pressure or jets. The result can be pushing the blockage further into the pipes, or worse causing water to explode out back through the pipework and cause water damage around your home.

Failing to call in the professionals in the early stages could easily result in a larger bill in the long-term, especially if you have to call out a plumber for an emergency fix when things don’t go quite according to plan! Master plumbers often have cameras they can use to assess the situation without digging up the lawn and can offer a quick and easy solution.

When all your DIY attempts fail call in a master plumber such as the team from Watkins Plumbing Services. Visit www.watkinsplumbing.co.nz to contact them for all your plumbing and drainage needs Auckland wide. If you’ve got a sewer clog, blockage or overflow, or need help with your plumbing and heating contact Watkins Plumbing Services for a free quote and let the experts solve your plumbing problems before they become emergencies!

How to Prevent Mould and Mildew in Your Bathroom

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It seems almost impossible to prevent mould and mildew from forming in your bathroom. Mould and mildew love the steamy, damp atmosphere created when you run that hot bath or enjoy a long, cleansing shower. Mould and mildew can’t form in dry conditions, so to prevent their growth you should concentrate on removing moisture from your bathroom as quickly as possible.

You know if you have mould or mildew in your bathroom as you usually find black spores around the place. If you have a damp bathroom it will smell. Mould and mildew are a recognised health hazard. Breathing in mould spores can cause respiratory illnesses and trigger asthma attacks. Mould and mildew can also cause headaches and nasal congestion. Once mould and mildew is established in your bathroom it can be almost impossible to remove, so prevention is vital for a mould and mildew-free bathroom.

Some tips to reduce moisture in your bathroom

  • install a fan
  • fit a showerdome
  • open a window
  • wipe down shower, walls and tub
  • use a squeegee
  • deal with leaks
  • fix leaky taps

If your bathroom or shower room doesn’t already have an extractor fan, get one fitted as soon as possible by a qualified electrician. For the cost of installation you will be rewarded with a dry and mildew-free bathroom. Every single time you shower or run a bath turn on the extractor fan and leave it running for at least 30 minutes after you have finished to remove as much moisture from the air as possible. This will help prevent moisture from collecting on your windowsills and around the bath and shower edges.

When moisture settles on your bath edge mould and mildew can grow in the sealant. Waterproof sealants are a great way to reduce mould and mildew attacks. If your fan is not clearing most of the moisture from the air within 5 to 10 minutes you may need a more powerful fan to cope with the volume of air in your room. Opening a window while you shower and leaving it open for 30 minutes afterwards can also help with moisture reduction but is not so much fun on a freezing winter morning!

When you have finished your shower or bath take a moment to dry or squeegee the walls or screens to remove as much of the excess moisture as you can; doing this can reduce the available moisture for mould and mildew to grow in by up to 75%. If you have a wet floor shower use a long-handled squeegee (rubber-edged scraper) to persuade the excess water down the drain.

A showerdome can be retrofitted to many shower designs. These innovative fixtures attach to the top of a shower cubicle and trap the moisture in the shower, preventing it from getting into the air. To reduce the risk of mould and mildew build-up wash shower curtains and non-slip bath mats regularly. Regularly cleaning and drying your bathroom fixtures and fittings, especially any grout, will help prevent mould and mildew from taking hold.

Be wary of products that simply bleach the mould and mildew white without actually killing it or removing it. Some mould and mildew removers are highly toxic so follow manufacturer’s instructions, which usually include wearing gloves and only using in a well-ventilated room. Baking soda and vinegar are a natural alternative to chemical cleaners for effective mould and mildew removal.

Promptly fix any leaky taps and shower heads to help prevent mould and mildew from building up around your drains. It is important to use a registered plumber who guarantees their workmanship. There are a number of professionals who provide plumbing and drainage services in Auckland, New Zealand so do your research.

For a qualified and experienced Auckland plumber contact Watkins Plumbing Services via their website www.watkinsplumbing.co.nz for a free quote. Their team of experienced master plumbers offer a prompt service for urgent problems and bathroom upgrades.

Watkins Plumbing for Every Plumbing and Drainage Job

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Family owned and operated since 1972, Watkins Plumbing Services provides a helpful and friendly service for every plumbing and drainage job throughout Auckland. Our work is guaranteed to be of the highest standard as we are members of the Master Plumbers Association.

Our fully equipped workshop based in Glen Eden, Auckland enables us to do our own metal fabrication work (window and door flashing, metal roofing, etc). We have cherry pickers and diggers at our disposal, so can easily cater for large scale as well as smaller installations. Our company is large enough that we can also provide a prompt service to fix leaky taps all over Auckland!

The plumbers at Watkins Plumbing Services are friendly, qualified and certified. We use our years of experience to offer the following services to customers in the Auckland area:

  • plumbing
  • drain laying
  • unblocking drains
  • installing new bathrooms
  • renovating old bathrooms
  • installing new kitchens
  • renovating old kitchens
  • fitting toilets
  • installing laundries
  • installing and repairing guttering, spouting and drain pipes
  • roofing (repairing and replacing)
  • backflow prevention
  • fixing leaks.

Master Plumber in Auckland

Choosing a master plumber guarantees you get a qualified, certified and licensed plumber to do your job right the first time. Not only are we master plumbers, but we are Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) compliant and Safe Site certified too.

Services offered by Watkins Plumbing

Trust us for your next plumbing or drainage job – no matter how big or small our team can provide you with quality services such as:

  • plumbing installation for new buildings and homes: internal and external plumbing, spouting, drainpipes, water mains, waste pipes, backflow prevention and drainage solutions
  • plumbing upgrades and installations: full bathroom and kitchen makeovers or renovations, including toilets and laundries
  • plumbing maintenance and repairs – Yes! We do fix leaky taps in Auckland!
  • repair and replacement of hot water cylinders
  • supply and installation of water storage tanks
  • drainlaying and installation
  • unblocking drains (we have a CCTV camera and a hydrojet machine to do the dirty work!)
  • solving your flooding problems with a custom drainage solution.

Roofing

With qualified roofing tradesmen we can assist with all your roofing requirements, both residential and commercial. Our tradesmen are familiar with a variety of roofing materials including: copper, zincalume, plastic and metal. We even have our own 12m cherry picker, so accessing high roofs is not a problem. We can do long run roofing installations, repairs, and upgrades to existing roofing (fix a leak or completely replace the roof), flashings, downpipes, guttering and spouting.

Backflow prevention

An effective backflow prevention system is essential to protect your drinking water from contamination. To ensure your safety make sure your backflow prevention system is designed, installed and inspected by an Auckland based master plumber so they are familiar with any relevant local regulations. As well as installation, for your peace of mind we can schedule regular appointments to test and maintain your system for maximum safety.

Watkins Plumbing Services are master plumbers based in Auckland for all your plumbing and drainage needs from fixing leaky taps to a full section drainage solution! For more information on the services we provide and to contact us please visit our website www.watkinsplumbing.co.nz.