April showers might bring May flowers, but they also bring some inconvenient plumbing problems. Be prepared for backed up sewer drains and flooding. Although some plumbing problems are unavoidable, there are several preventive measures you can take to avoid these common spring plumbing issues.
Pittsburgh gets an average of 10 to 15 inches of rain every spring. One of the most common problems during the heavy and frequent rains are backups. To keep your downspout from backing up, clear your drains, gutters and downspouts. During the winter, your gutters build up with leaves, branches and other debris, when it begins to rain heavily, all of the debris can make their way into your downspout and even into your drain. Be sure your drains, gutters and downspouts are prepared before the rain.
All of this excess rain during the spring can cause flooding, especially if your sump pump isn’t working properly. To test out your sump pump, pour a few buckets of water into the sump pit until it turns on. It should remove the water and then turn off on its own. If the pump doesn’t turn on after just a few seconds of pouring the water in, has trouble removing the water or doesn’t turn off on its own, call a licensed plumber to inspect it and get your sump pump working properly.
You should also inspect all of your outdoor faucets. If they weren’t properly drained in the fall or there was still a hose connected to it, the pipe could have frozen and caused it to crack due to the expansion. If this is the case with any of your pipes, have it repaired as soon as possible, as it could result in severe leaks and water damage to your home.