You had hoped for the best.
Unfortunately, you had found the worst.
While your next door neighbors spend part of the year in their Arizona home, you watch over their house in the midwest. This year, the neighbor’s schedule had been no different, but the weather back home had been pretty extreme. Like the year’s past, as soon as the middle of October rolled around, the neighbors packed up their belongings and headed to the warmth of their winter home location. Also like year’s in the past, you and your husband made sure that at least once a week one of walked all of the way through their home. You walked in and out of bathrooms, checked the sump pump in the basement, double checked that the temperature was normal. You never really found any problems, but it was comforting for your neighbors to know that all was well in the land of cold weather and snow, while they were enjoying their days on the golf and tennis courts of Arizona.
The third week in January, however, was not so normal. You had some extremely cold weather. Several days, in fact, had set new record lows. You had found that the neighbor’s house felt a little cooler than normal, but when you checked the thermostat it was always set the same and the current temperature always matched the intended setting. On this weekend, however, you had some really strange weather. First more freezing cold temperatures, then a slight warm up, followed by nearly 36 hours of freezing rain, sometimes changing to sleet, snow, and every other kind of moisture you can imagine.
You had been unable to make it across the yard, let alone the sidewalk and the driveway to complete your Sunday morning walk through. When the thaw finally occurred on Tuesday, however, you ventured next door. Within a minute of turning off the alarm system, you found yourself frantically calling the plumber, then your husband, even before you called to deliver the bad news to the neighbors.
Evidently, an outside pipe had burst and water had started leaking into the garage. You did not realize that the water had been running out the garage because everything had been so wet, so frozen, that you had not even driven in the last two days. Had you driven by the house, as at least one or two other neighbors probably have, you would likely not have noticed the water. It simply looked like the same all of the other driveways in the subdivision. The big difference, of course, was that your neighbor’s driveway was icing over from plumbing problems inside the garage, not sleet problems from outside.
You were thankful that the slightly sloped garage floor had sent the plumbing emergency away from the foundation, but you dreaded making the call to your neighbors. The residential plumbing company had already sent someone out, and you hoped that this expert could confirm, both to you and your neighbor, that the damage had been limited to the one outside pipe and the garage.
Both Residential and Commercial Plumbing Questions Are Best Handled by Professionals
Whether you are looking for a solution to a water line repair problem or the answer to a toilet that never seems to quit running, most home and business owners agree that any situation that has to do with water and possible water damage is best left to the professionals. consider some of these facts and figures:
- 38% of the water usage of an average home involves flushing toilets.
- Installing a low-flush toilet can save a home owner up to 18,000 gallons of water a year.
- Setting a hot water heater to no hotter than 125 degrees is typically recommended by most plumbers. Set any higher, it only takes water at a temperature of 140 degrees just a few seconds to burn skin.
- Leaky faucets can fill an eight-ounce glass in 15 minutes. This wastes 180 gallons of water a month, which amounts to 2,160 gallons a year.
- A leaky faucet that drips twice a minute, will waste more than a gallon of water in a week.
- 9,000 gallons of water are wasted while running the faucet waiting for hot water. In fact, 15% of annual water heating costs can be wasted heating this extra 9,000 gallons.