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Water Pipe Repairs Related Questions

Most water pipes at home are built of copper. This makes the pipes a lot easier to repair as compared with old style galvanized pipes. Since copper is light, it’s easier to lug around if you are working at a height or under a building. Over time, as the solder erodes however, copper pipes can develop leaks around the joints. It is rare for them to get punctured though and this usually only happens when there is construction work being carried out in the house.

Listed below are a few questions answered by the Experts on water pipe repairs.

The hot water pipe that connects to the shower feels hot but when the water comes out, it’s cold. I have a single handle shower faucet that operates the water. How can I get hot water to flow out?

Your faucet cartridge seems to be faulty. Pull it out and see if you can flush the valve body out. To do this, switch off the water supply to the house at the main valve. Thereafter, remove the handle and the cartridge. Close the shower door/curtain and open the main water valve for a few seconds. This should help to get rid of any debris in the valve. Reassemble it and test it again. If the problem reappears, it’s likely that you might have to just replace the cartridge.

My bathroom sink has a hot water pipe that has begun to make a shuddering noise when I set the spindle to lukewarm temperature. I even attempted to drain the tank but it didn’t help. What do you think is causing the problem?

There could be two reasons why this is happening. It’s possible that your faucet has a loose washer or that a bit of debris such as a rock or piece of solder is stuck in the faucet. It might have come out of the supply tube after you drained the tank, but it’s probably worked its way up again after a while.

I had the faulty water pipe outside my house fixed by a professional. But the hot water has become cloudy with something that seems like dirt or sediment. How can I fix this problem?

This may only be a temporary problem. To begin with, you can attempt to flush the water heater out and let the water flow out into the tub and other fixtures. Take off the aerators on all faucets before you do this as they may get clogged when the water is drained and then switched back on.

To flush the heater, follow the instructions below:

Switch off the water supply to the tank and make sure that the gas valve is turned to pilot. If you have a heater that runs on electricity, switch off the power supply to the heater. Get a hose and attach it to the drain faucet at the base of the tank and keep the drain open. If water doesn’t flow out, open the shut off to the tank to get the water to flow out and then shut it off once more. After this, turn on a hot water sink faucet to allow some air into the tank to help it drain. Once you have drained the tank, turn off the sink faucet that you opened. Keep the hose and drain faucet open and switch the water supply to the tank back on. After you let it flow for about 5-10 minutes, close the drain and let the water fill the tank. Finally, turn on a hot water faucet and let it run till it stops spitting air. After this, switch the electricity or gas back on.

The pressure in my water pipe fluctuates only when the weather turns cold and when I turn on the faucet first thing in the morning. Why does this happen?

It seems like the Pressure Reducing Valve (PRV) is being affected by the cold weather. If you can’t adjust the pressure with the existing PRV, you will probably have to replace it to solve the problem.

Water pipes are known to make noises occasionally. These noises can vary from something as soft as a low hiss to a loud hammering sound. Once you find out the cause, you can decide the best way to address the problem. For example, if the noise is due to a faulty washer, you can stop it by disassembling the faucet and replacing it. Faulty ballcock assemblies can also make the pipes noisy and this can again be solved by replacing them. If your pipe is noisy because of a water hammer, you should be able to sort this out by lowering the pressure of the water or by installing shock absorbers with professional help. Whatever be the cause, if you don’t have the experience or the resources to fix a noisy pipe, it’s always better to ask an Expert or consult a professional.
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