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When it comes to home repairs, Torrance residents are pretty savvy.  We may not be professional contractors exactly, but generally we know enough to improvise our way through a clogged toilet or leaky faucet.

However, sometimes there are problems that we just don’t know how to handle – partially because we’re not licensed professionals, but also because we couldn’t see any obvious signs of trouble.  I’m talking about your home’s “hidden” plumbing, the pipes and pieces located behind the walls, under the floorboards, or outside the home.

For these locations, you don’t often know how serious a problem is until it’s too late.  But don’t worry.  By watching out for warning signs – and with a little preventative maintenance – you can hopefully avoid an unforeseen emergency altogether.  Here are a few plumbing areas to consider:

Sewer lines

By carrying waste away from our homes, sewer lines bring much convenience to our lives.  Unfortunately, they can also wreak havoc.   In the worst breakdowns, they can send gross waste water back up our pipes and into our bathtubs and sinks.  Not to mention, they can ruin our lawns. 

Typically, the problem starts from tree roots.  It’s not uncommon (especially with older homes) for roots to break or collapse old lines.  Frustratingly, you would never know this is happening underground.

Typical signs to watch for are clogged drains, or unusual activity among your fixtures.  For example, if the bathtub overflows when you flush your toilet, the sewer might be responsible.  In this case, don’t hesitate to contact a professional.  For the best plumber Los Angeles has to offer, call Torrance Plumbing & Heating.  No matter where you live in the South Bay, we can fix the blocked line, as well as any chaos it’s caused in your home.

Water heaters

In a way, water heaters control the main functions of your home’s plumbing.  Yet ironically, you wouldn’t necessarily notice if they started to fail.  Unlike, say, a clogged drain, a faulty heater doesn’t manifest itself in overly obvious ways.  You have to keep an eye out for the clues.

If the temperature of your shower has consistently waned over time, this could be a symptom of a bigger problem.  Likewise, consistently weak water pressure can indicate that the heater is slowly failing.

If you’re unsure about their efficacy, it never hurts to give them a quick inspection.  A fast way to tell (although it’s rare) is if there’s a large puddle surrounding it.  More subtle clues would be the plumbing lines around it (do they look worn?), and the heater’s age.  If it’s more than ten years old, it may be faulty.

Pipes

Manhattan Beach residents know that most pipes in their homes are impossible to see.  But if you have access to your home’s original plans, you can determine their location.  However, for a burst pipe, you may not need a diagram; instinct can probably identify it for you based on the flooded areas.

Again, it’s almost impossible to predict an issue, but knowing your home’s history can help.  As a general rule, if you have older pipes, you should call a plumber for a check up.  Nobody wants to deal with flooded floors.