The cost to replace the plumbing in an old house depends on several factors. In this article, we try to lay out a general idea of the financial impact it could have on your bank account.

Buying an old house and fixing it up—it’s a dream for many people, whether they are first-time homeowners or real estate investors. Unfortunately, when you buy an old house, there is a chance that the inner workings have severely deteriorated, and that includes one of the most important systems: the plumbing.

Over time, regardless of the material used, plumbing corrodes and decays, leaving you, the homeowner, with an expensive mess. But just how much is it going to cost to replace plumbing in an old house that you own?

Here’s what you need to know.

Know the Signs That Your Plumbing Is Failing

First things first, if you have not read our piece on the signs that your plumbing needs to be replaced, read that post before moving on.

Done? Okay, let’s talk about costs.

What Is the Range of Cost to Replace Plumbing in an Old House?

If you are looking for a precise number here, you are not going to like this answer. The cost of replacing your old home’s plumbing can range from a few thousand dollars to upwards of $15,000. Sometimes it can cost even more, depending on the size of your home and the types of materials you decide to use. For instance, PVC is a lot cheaper than copper.

How to Make It More Affordable to Replace Your Plumbing

Now that you’ve heard the bad news—or perhaps the unsatisfying news—let’s hear some good news. You don’t usually have to replace all of the plumbing in your home at once. There are many ways that you can spread out the costs associated with removing old pipes and installing a new plumbing system.

One example involves replacing the plumbing in your home as you do renovations. If you are planning to redo a bathroom or a kitchen, you can knock out the deteriorating pipes as you go.

You may also choose to only replace the pipes in your home that are exposed. Taking this route allows you to forego the expense of ripping out and repairing walls, floors, and ceilings until it is absolutely necessary.

This can be especially costly in old homes, which were often built with more expensive materials than we use today. If you want to preserve the integrity of your home’s originality, you will want to use those same materials when you renovate.

5 Factors That Affect the Cost to Replace Plumbing

No plumbing equipment is impenetrable, and even the most robust and long-lasting pipe systems will inevitably disintegrate. If your home’s pipes are significantly damaged, a simple repair may not always be enough to stop a leak.

Hiring a professional who knows how to do the needed maintenance is critical when this occurs. Otherwise, you could have water leaks all over your house, and you’ll have to deal with the mess yourself.

What are the Different Factors That Affect the Cost to Replace Plumbing?

When it comes to home improvement, the costs are bound to vary from one house to the next. Factors that affect the costs include the condition of your pipes and gutters, how many years you’ve been without maintenance services, and whether you’re willing to take on a costly project yourself. Here are five of the most critical factors that can affect the cost:

  • Location of Failing Pipes

The placement of damaged pipes influences the cost of replumbing a house. For example, replacing a line in the basement will be more expensive than replacing a pipe in the attic. In addition, more expensive plumbing must be fixed beneath your bathrooms, bedrooms, and kitchen walls. There are additional fees associated with these emergency repairs, as well as the extra time required.

  • Size of Home & Total Stories

Replumbing a home larger than 2,600 square feet will cost more because it will require more supplies and time than homes smaller than 640 square feet or with only one floor. Furthermore, homeowners will save money replacing older homes with larger models rather than smaller ones. Similarly, a two-story house will cost more to replumb than a ranch house with a single floor.

  • Quantity of Sinks & Fixtures

The expenditure of a replacement project is higher in homes with multiple plumbing fixtures. This is because the sewer and water lines are corroding, necessitating the installation of additional pipes and supplies. The cost of replacing these pipes is also higher because connecting the pipes to each fixture takes time. Replacing a single sink can cost between $200 and $1,500, while replacing multiple sinks can be much more expensive. 

  • Diameter of the Supply & Drainage Pipes

A large diameter pipe necessitates the production of additional materials, which prove to be more expensive. This can add up when labor is used for installation, as the cost of a larger diameter pipe may be significantly higher.

  • Replacement Pipe Material

The most common types of pipes used in homes are Cross-linked Polyethylene (PEX), Chlorinated Polyvinyl Chloride (CPVC), and Copper. PEX piping is less expensive to repipe than copper piping because it is more flexible and takes a plumber less time to install behind the walls.

Copper piping costs more than PEX piping because it is more robust and lasts longer. The cost of replacing a home’s pipes with old-fashioned copper wiring can range from $5,000 to $15,000 or more, depending on several factors.

Tips for Reducing the Cost of Replacing Plumbing

You can do a few things to keep the cost down when it comes to replacing plumbing. Here are four tips:

  • Take advantage of coupons and discounts

Many plumbing companies offer discounts during certain times, such as during summertime. Check with your local businesses to see if they offer any special deals.

  • Ask around for recommendations

Talk to friends, family, and neighbors about their recent plumbing replacement experiences and see if anyone has any good advice or recommendations.

  • Compare prices online

Use online tools like Google Shopping to compare prices between different plumbing retailers in your area. You can also use these tools to find coupons and discounts specific to certain retailers.

The Cost to Replace Plumbing in an Old House Depends on Many Factors

Interested in learning more about replacing your home’s plumbing? Need a quote? Get in touch with Custom Plumbing of Arizona today so that we can send one of our plumbers to your home and give you an estimate.

We are here to help you tackle your plumbing project, so don’t hesitate to contact us now!

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Toilet slow to fill? Find out why and what you can do to fix it in this article.

When you flush your toilet, does it seem the water fills too slowly? Homeowners often encounter this issue. Many factors can cause this problem. No matter how minor or expensive your toilet problem is, identifying it will allow you to apply the correct solution so the toilet can work optimally as quickly as possible.

What makes a toilet slow to fill, and what can be done to fix it?

The toilet tank usually refills in about a minute, depending on the water pressure in your home. You may have an issue if it’s taking a long time to complete.

    Clogged vents.

Clogged vents prevent air from escaping the tank, which will cause the water to take longer to fill. Remove the roof cover and inspect the vent to determine if it is clogged. Make sure it’s clear of leaves or debris if it has gotten clogged up.

How to fix it?

Remove anything clogging the vent with needle-nose pliers if it is clogged. Run a vinegar/baking soda plunger through your drain to clear it. One cup of baking soda should be added to six cups of vinegar. Allow the toilet to soak for 10 minutes before flushing.

    Problem with water supply valves

The flapper is located just above the water supply valve of your toilet tank, which controls the water flow leading to your toilet tank. If it is partially closed or if it is not performing correctly, the water may not be able to reach the right place at the right time.

An additional issue with the valve could be debris build-up in the valve, which could restrict the flow of water, causing the valve to fill slower.

How to fix it?

The fill valve can be adjusted by following these steps:

  •     The fill valve can most often be found on the left side of the tank when you remove the tank lid.
  •     Attach the fill valve evenly and securely to the tube.
  •     Older toilets need an adjustment screw that can be loosened with a flathead screwdriver or their fill valves raised to let more water in.
  •     You can add more water to the tank of a newer toilet by turning the fill valve adjustment knob with your hand.
  •     Ensure that the overflow tube is about one inch below the top of the water level on all toilets that have them.
  •     Ensure that the tank is filling properly and that the correct amount of water is being pumped into the tank when you flush it.

 

    Waterlogged Float Ball

If you have a toilet that is slow to fill, it could be the float ball. The float ball on the water surface controls the level of incoming water. Flooding the float ball with water prevents the tank from filling efficiently. There are, therefore, chances of the tank not filling with enough water or that it will take longer than expected to refill with water.

How to fix it?

  •     Ensure that the float ball does not float too low in the water, ensure that the float arm is firmly attached to the tank. It might be necessary to bend the arm upward slightly. When the ball is raised from the bottom of the tank, water can flow more freely into the tank since the ball has been raised.
  •     A replacement float ball will possibly need to be installed if this does not solve the problem and you are still persuaded that the float ball is the cause.

 

     Fill valve tube problems

Inside the toilet tank, there is a device that looks like a vertical tube having a fill valve on the end. The primary purpose of the fill valve is to regulate how much water goes into the tank.

Additionally, fill valves might become clogged, worn down, or displaced over time. The result is that the toilet may be unable to fill completely with water.

How to fix it?

Clean the valve tube of debris to fix a clogged valve.

  •     Put an end to the water supply by shutting off the taps.
  •     Disconnect the valve’s hardware.
  •     If the tube is dirty, clean it out with a bottle brush or a wire.
  •     We recommend opening and closing the water supply valve a few times to flush out any leftover residue and see if any clogs have been cleaned.
  •     To see if the toilet is filling properly after flushing, you may need to replace the hardware and the tube.

Replace the valve tube if it is cracked, ripped, or appears worn or damaged, or if it has any holes or tears

Toilet Slow to Fill: Conclusion

The toilet tank fills slowly, making flushing much more difficult. Moreover, the problem can occur with either a two-piece or one-piece toilet. Sometimes, when you flush the toilet after a weak sound and poor flow, you find the freshly flushed feces staring back at you after those awkward times.

Hopefully, this post will provide you with enough information to help you understand your problem with your toilet tank.

Need help? Contact a professional plumber at Custom Plumbing of Arizona today.

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Got a smelly shower drain? Check out some of the reasons for the unpleasant odors here, as well as some helpful tips.

A hideous smell from the shower drain will deter you from feeling clean. Showering is an essential part of the daily routine of most people. Getting into the shower is an expectation that you will smell the scent of soap. There are times when problems with the shower drain, such as mildew or sewer odors can get in, and you cut your shower short.

There is nothing worse than smelling the odor of your shower drain rising up in the air since it can feel too embarrassing. The truth is, however, that drains often come with unpleasant odors.

 

It is often possible to clear up a smelly shower drain with a good clean of the trap and drain. Still, sometimes the smell can be a sign of something more serious that requires the help of a professional plumber. Depending on the cause, we can attribute the smelly shower to various reasons.

4 Possible Reasons for a Smelly Shower Drain

It is important to note the unpleasant smell you notice in the bathroom when a shower drain makes your nose wrinkle. This way, you can identify the possible source of the smell. Following are some possible reasons behind the smelly shower drain.

    Clogged Drains

It is important to clean your shower drain regularly. Several reasons may contribute to it becoming blocked, including hair that can accumulate in soap scum, debris, or the P-Trap.

A solid clog can result in unpleasant odors emanating from the shower as a result. Such clogs can easily be cleaned up using the right tools, chemical solutions, or a professional’s help.

How to Clear a Drain Clog

To clear out a drain clog, you’ll need to take off the face shield on your plunger to get a better grip before plunging it into the blockage. Common causes of smelly shower drain like this can be very difficult because it requires you to use one hand inside the dirty p-trap while using the other for the plunge – which is uncomfortable at best.

    Problem with the P-trap

P-trap problems are common issues. The P-trap may cause an unpleasant smell that appears in your bathroom after a shower if it smells like a sewer. There is a U-shaped pipe underneath your shower drain where the water passes.

If you can see it, you will be able to see how it works. It is called the P-trap. Its purpose is to prevent sewage gasses from returning up the pipe and into the bathroom by holding a small amount of water at all times.

How to Clean Shower P-Traps

When cleaning this section of pipe, check the trap for debris. A paper towel or old rag can help unclog its passage if it appears that something is blocking it.

To fill the P-trap completely with no air pockets, take care to remove all debris from inside the tub, then fill the tub with cold water. By flushing out other blockages, the bad smell can be eliminated.

    Biofilms build-up

Biofilm is another common cause of shower odor. It is possible to build up biofilm inside the shower drain and on the shower wall, resulting in musty, unpleasant odors. You are likely suffering from mold or a biofilm inside the shower drain if the drain smells like mildew.

Biofilm can have negative health effects. The bathtub drain and the rest of your shower need to be cleaned to avoid these dangers and odors. It is possible that your drain needs to be jetted or cleaned by a professional if it still smells mildew despite your best efforts. It is an inexpensive and simple fix.

How to fix it?

For a biofilm problem to be solved, you will need to use a special enzyme-based product that targets bacteria and germs. Additionally, you will also require a few other techniques.

In many cases, unclean maintenance of these areas in the shower drain is at the root of the problem, leading to build-up.

    Pipes with leaks

It may be that your shower drain still smells if the water is draining well and the pipes are not clogged with hair or biofilm. You will smell rotten eggs from your shower drain if there are leaks in your bathroom wall or under the shower, allowing sewer gasses to escape.

 

For sewer gasses to be contained, they need to come from the P-trap, and if they don’t, there is a leak somewhere in the drain line.

 

Usually, shower leaks result in rotten egg-like odors because sulfurous gasses are expelled through the drain system. Shower drain smells can be caused by corrosion on your pipes and by loose joints such as those below your toilet seat or on the taps on your sink.

How to Fix it?

Changing corroded joints in your drain system to tighten them and replacing sections of pipe that could be rusting are both things you can do to get rid of shower smells emanating from your drain system.

As daunting as this task may seem, it is absolutely necessary to maintain a safe interior living environment within the bathroom to maintain the quality of life there.

Final Verdict for Your Smelly Shower Drain

The smell of a smelly shower drain or, even worse, stench spread throughout your home due to leaks, and other causes aren’t desirable. To prevent unwanted odors and other health hazards, it is essential to identify and address problems at the earliest possible time.

A professional plumber can handle all of your plumbing issues in your home, inspecting and resolving any issues that might arise.

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How much will slab leak repair cost you? To answer this critical question, we need to lay out a few variables that contribute to costs. Here’s what to know.

Deteriorating pipes underneath your home’s slab foundation can cause serious destruction if you don’t repair them quickly. Leaky pipes in your home can be expensive—not only do they raise your monthly water bill, but they can also cause permanent damage. When the leak is located below a concrete slab, your foundation could be at risk of failing.

The question that most homeowners ask when they hear they have this problem is, “how much will slab leak repair cost me?” According to HomeAdvisor, it can be quite expensive:

  • Detecting a leak beneath a slab can cost $150 to $600.
  • The average cost to repair a slab leak is $2,280.
  • Repairing your slab foundation after fixing the leak often costs over $2,000.

As these figures demonstrate, a few factors can contribute to overall costs. This article provides a general outline of what to expect.

What Factors into Concrete Slab Repair Cost?

Concrete slab leak repair cost can be expensive, in part because of the specialist work and labor involved. But there are a variety of factors that you can use to determine what price you’ll get quoted, which will make it easier for you to plan accordingly! In this section, we break down the different factors that contribute to the price of a slab leak repair so that you’re better prepared.

 

Slab Leak Reroute

Rerouting your plumbing is an option when you want to avoid extensive demolition costs. A plumber will find a new route through your home to save your floors from destruction and repair. Concrete slab leak repair cost for a reroute job will depend on the size of the affected area but can range from $300 to $1500 to complete.

 

Under-Slab Repair

An under-slab leak is one of the most common plumbing leaks. It may be caused by a variety of reasons, including heavy rain, excessive runoff, and a broken pipe. In many cases, the leak can be found at the joint connecting two pieces of piping. Under-slab repair requires the plumber to demolish a portion of the concrete slab to access the leak. Depending on the size of the job, this can cost anywhere from $500 to $4000.

 

Water Main Repair

Your home’s water main line is what allows you to have water in your home. If the water main is damaged, this can add to the cost of repairs as well. Water main repairs can cost between $500 and $3000, depending on the extent of the damage and the amount of piping that needs to be replaced.

 

Burst Pipe

Burst pipes are often the cause of slab leaks. These pipes have cracks or seams that allow water to leak out inside a building, causing structural damage and health hazards. Burst pipes usually break because of wear and tear or because they were installed too close to a heat source, like an oven or furnace. Depending on how accessible the broken potion of the pipe is, this can cost between $400 and $850.

 

New Concrete Slab

One of the main factors into the cost of a slab leak repair is the type of slab. If there is an older concrete slab, it will likely cost more to repair than if it was a newer concrete slab. The material used for the new concrete will also affect how much it costs to fix.

If damage is too extensive, the entire slab may need to be replaced. Because this is a big job, it costs a lot to complete. The total cost depends on the size of the slab and the thickness of the slab. These jobs range between $3600 and $7200 to finish.

5 Slab Leak Signs to Know

Finding a slab leak on your home is difficult, but there are warning signs that will point you in the right direction. Learning what these warning signs are and what to do if you notice them are important steps in securing your home against water damage and other costly repairs.

Do you know these slab leak signs?

Higher Water Bills

Is your water bill higher than normal? If there are no other indications of increased water use, such as additional guests in your home, then you might have a slab leak. Slab leaks allow your water to run constantly, which will drive up water usage in your home.

Poor Water Pressure

When the water pressure in your home starts to decrease without any obvious explanation, you could be looking at one of the top slab leak signs. If your plumbing typically has great water pressure, you should consider whether you need to have a professional diagnose the problem. At the very least, you will get peace of mind.

Damaged Flooring

In most cases, slab leaks happen in the hot water pipes. You might notice unusual warm spots on your floor when there is a leaking pipe due to uneven heating occurring from the top down. Additionally, the water can wreak havoc on carpeting and other household surfaces if fit seeps up through a crack in the slab.

The Sound of Running Water

You may hear a persistent sound in your plumbing despite having all your faucets turned off. To test whether you water is leaking under the slab, turn off all the water in your house and listen for the sound of running water.

Unpleasant Smells

Your home might start to collect a funny smell if you have a slab leak – even though you clean it daily. If water is streaming at a steady rate out of your home pipes, your floors or walls might have mildew and mold growing behind their surface that is giving off a funky scent. To fix the problem, you will need to contact a professional plumber.

 

Detecting the Slab Leak

Finding a leak beneath a slab foundation is more difficult than locating a leak in your home. Because the pipes are buried under the foundation, a leak detection specialist will need to use special equipment to find the exact location of the leak to minimize the damage to your foundation.

If you don’t know where the leak is located, hiring an expert who has the experience and equipment to do the job efficiently can save you hundreds, maybe even thousands, in slab leak repair costs.

Repairing the Leaky Pipe

A broken pipe can cost anywhere from $150 to nearly $400 to repair. The price tag goes up quite a bit on average if the pipe in question is your main water line. It may cost as little as $150, though the average cost is about $840, and some repairs cost as high as $3,000 to complete.

Keep in mind that costs are relative to the extent of the damage to your pipes.

Foundation Repairs

The majority of your slab leak repair cost will most likely come from foundation repair. Fixing a slab leak requires cutting through your foundation to access the pipes, and depending on how much of the foundation needs to be removed, it can get expensive.

On average, pouring a new foundation costs between $3,600 and $7,200, though you should be aware that this is for an average-sized home. If your home is large, the average cost can be much more of a burden. You may also want to consider rerouting your plumbing to save on costs.

How much will slab leak repair cost you? Get a free estimate today.

Have your water bills been higher than usual? Have you noticed the sound of running water when your taps are turned off? You might have a slab leak. If you suspect your home has this surprisingly common problem, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Custom Plumbing of Arizona. We are slab leak experts you can trust.

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A sagging sewer line can become a serious problem if you don’t fix it. Here’s what you can expect.

One flush. Two flushes. Three flushes. Four.

Once again, you have found yourself standing next to the toilet, pushing the lever and staring as the you-know-what spins round and round but refuses to go down. Don’t worry, it’s not you—it’s your sagging sewer line.

Then again, maybe you should worry. If something is wrong with your sewer line, you know it’s going to be expensive to fix. But just like your clogged toilet, a sewer line belly is not going to go away on its own.

In fact, it might just cause more damage if you let it sit, and that really stinks.

What is a sewer line belly?

A sagging sewer line, or belly, occurs when a dip forms at one or more spots along the sewer pipe. Most sewer lines use gravity to transfer waste from a home to the sewer. The water you send down the drain carries the solid waste down a sloping pipe that leads from your home to the main sewer system. Sometimes, the slope of a sewer line gets disrupted, which prevents the water and solid waste from moving freely to its destination.

What causes a sagging sewer line?

A sewer belly has many possible causes. Sometimes, the soil that supports a portion of the pipe settles, and over time the line begins to sag. Seasonal temperature changes, excessive rain, and poor soil compaction at the time the pipe was laid—all of these factors can contribute to a sagging sewer line. Other times, tree roots slowly push down against the soil and the sewer pipe.

When your sewer line begins to sag, you can expect to experience some common—and often nasty—consequences.

3 Nasty Effects of a Sagging Sewer Line

Clogged Line

When you have a belly in your sewer line, solid waste can become trapped in the low-lying area of the pipe. As you send more and more waste down the drain, the solids can build up until your line is completely clogged.

Backed Up Sewer Line

If your sewer line is totally obstructed, you run the risk of a sewage backing up into your home. As you can imagine, the resulting mess is horrifying and can lead to the spread of nasty bacteria inside your house, which can become a health hazard if it is not properly cleaned.

Sewage Leak

Sagging sewer lines may also crack. When cracks form in your sewer pipe, the waste water can leak into your yard. Even a small crack can lead to big problems because the water that escapes can erode the soil and contribute to more severe sagging, which can contribute to further cracking, and on and on.

How to Fix a Sag in a Sewer Line

Homeowners may be unfamiliar with the fact that sewage waste is often moved using gravity. There are a number of issues that can happen with this type of system, such as sagging. While a sagging sewer line is fixable, the cost may vary depending on the repair method.

Why Sagging Sewer Lines Are a Problem

Sewer pipes are installed with a positive slope, because they are gravity-based and work to push waste away from your home. In most cases, the angle is somewhere around 1/4 inch of drop for every foot of piping. However, if you have limited space, the slope can be as small as 1/8 inch, even though this is not preferable.

A sag in a sewer line, also known as a belly, creates a pool that blogs sewage from being pushed away from your home. Eventually, if the sag is severe enough, it can lead to clogs that block the entire pipe.

Improper soil compaction and natural soil shifting can cause the pipe to sag, which can lead to a significant risk of leaking or breaking.

Dig and Replace Method

The traditional method for replacing a sagging sewer line is known as the dig and replace method. As the name implies, a contractor will dig down into your property until the sagging section of pipe is exposed, then repair the pipe and backfill the trench. In many cases, this method costs about $60 per foot of piping that has to be replaced, but other factors can make it even more expensive. For instance, if the contractor has to pull up asphalt or concert to access the pipe, it can be quite expensive.

Trenchless Sewer Pipe Replacement

Over the years, we have learned how to fix a sag in a sewer pipe using new methods. These methods include in-line expansion and sliplining. These methods usually cost between $40 and $80 per foot and don’t require digging up your property.

How to Fix a Sag in a Sewer Pipe Under the House

In some homes, the sewer pipes are accessible from the basement or crawlspace. Sewer pipes are heavy, so if they are not secured properly to the structure of your home, they may cause the rest of the sewer line to sag. Sometimes this happens when the home slowly settles into the soil.

Homeowners may be able to fix this problem on their own, but in most situations, it is best to hire a trained and licensed professional to avoid causing unnecessary damage.

Should I repair my sagging sewer line?

It may be tempting to put off sewer line repairs when a sag occurs, but homeowners should use caution. When you try to save money by putting off repairs, it can cost you more later, since problems tend to worsen over time.

Want to prevent extensive damage from a sagging sewer line? Get an inspection today!

A sewer line belly is one of the last things you want to experience. For your peace of mind, if you suspect your sewer line may be in trouble, we suggest that you get it inspected.

Let Custom Plumbing of Arizona help you determine if you have a sagging sewer line. Contact us today to get the help you need.

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