A properly functioning plumbing system is essential for the comfort and convenience of any household. However, plumbing systems are prone to various issues over time, like any other infrastructure. From minor annoyances to major emergencies, plumbing problems can disrupt your daily routine and cause significant damage if not addressed promptly. 

Our comprehensive guide will explore the most common plumbing issues homeowners encounter, their causes, potential consequences, and recommended solutions with the help of Edmonton residential plumbing.

Dripping Faucets

One of the most persistent and irritating plumbing issues is a dripping faucet. Besides the constant sound of dripping water, this problem can waste a significant amount of water and increase your water bill. The common causes include worn-out washers, damaged seals, or loose parts within the faucet. Fixing a dripping faucet often involves replacing faulty components or reseating them.

Clogged Drains

Clogged drains are a common nuisance in sinks, showers, bathtubs, and toilets. They are typically caused by the accumulation of debris, such as hair, soap scum, food particles, or grease. Slow drainage or complete blockage are the telltale signs of a clogged drain. 

Regular maintenance and preventive measures like using drain covers and avoiding pouring grease down the drain can help prevent this issue. Simple clogs can often be cleared with a plunger or a drain snake, while stubborn blockages may require professional assistance.

Running Toilets

A running toilet is not only annoying but can waste a significant amount of water. It occurs when the water continuously flows into the toilet bowl after flushing, even when it’s not in use. 

The primary culprits are usually faulty flappers or defective fill valves. Replacing or adjusting these components can usually resolve the issue. Ignoring a running toilet can lead to water wastage and inflated water bills.

Leaking Pipes

Leaking pipes are a plumbing issue that should never be ignored. They can cause extensive damage to your home, leading to mold growth, water stains, and even structural problems. Corrosion, excessive water pressure, shifting foundations, or freezing temperatures commonly cause pipe leaks. 

Fixing a leaking pipe often involves locating the source of the leak, tightening fittings, applying sealant, or replacing damaged pipe sections. Calling a professional plumber to assess and repair the issue in severe cases is best.

Water Heater Problems

A malfunctioning water heater can disrupt daily routines, especially during colder months. Common water heater issues include inadequate hot water, fluctuating water temperature, unusual noises, or a leaking tank. Mineral buildup, a faulty thermostat, sediment accumulation, or a worn-out heating element can cause these problems. 

Regular maintenance, such as flushing the tank and checking the pressure relief valve, can help prevent these issues. However, complex repairs and replacements are best left to professionals.

Low Water Pressure

Low water pressure can make everyday tasks frustrating and time-consuming, such as showering and washing dishes. Various factors, including clogged pipes, mineral buildup in fixtures, a faulty pressure regulator, or a problem with the municipal water supply, can cause it. 

Identifying the specific cause will help determine the appropriate solution. In some cases, clearing clogs or cleaning fixtures can restore water pressure, while others may require professional assistance to diagnose and resolve the issue.

Sewer Line Backup

A sewer line backup is a severe plumbing issue that requires immediate attention. It can cause wastewater to back into sinks, toilets, and drains, resulting in foul odors, slow drainage, and potential health hazards. 

Common causes of sewer line backups include tree root infiltration, clogs from debris or grease, or structural damage to the pipes. Professional assistance is crucial to accurately diagnose the problem and repair or clean the sewer line.

Faulty Toilet Flushing

Toilet flushing problems can range from weak flushes to toilets that won’t flush. A weak flush may be due to a partially clogged tramway or a problem with the flapper, while a non-flushing toilet might have a broken flush valve or a faulty handle mechanism. 

Addressing these issues may involve cleaning or replacing specific components, adjusting the water level, or resolving blockages within the toilet.

Leaking Hose Bibs

Hose bibs, or outdoor faucets, are prone to leakage, especially after winter months. Freezing temperatures can cause the pipes to crack or the faucet connections to become loose, resulting in leaks. Leaking hose bibs can waste water and lead to water damage to the surrounding area. 

Repairing or replacing the hose bibs may be necessary to resolve the issue and ensure proper functioning.

Noisy Pipes

You’re likely dealing with noisy pipes if you hear banging, knocking, or rattling sounds coming from your pipes when you turn on the water. 

These sounds, known as water hammer or pipe expansion, occur when water flow is abruptly stopped or redirected, causing the pipes to vibrate or bang against surrounding surfaces. Noisy pipes can be caused by high water pressure, loose pipes, or improper pipe installation. Installing water hammer arrestors, securing loose pipes, or adjusting water pressure can help alleviate the problem.

Leaky Showerheads or Faucets

Leaky showerheads and faucets waste water and lead to higher utility bills. They are often caused by worn-out rubber washers, faulty cartridges, or mineral deposits obstructing water flow. Repairing or replacing the affected components can resolve the leaks and restore proper functionality to your shower or faucet.

Frozen Pipes

In colder climates, frozen pipes can be a significant concern during winter. When water freezes inside the pipes, it expands and puts pressure on the walls, leading to cracks or burst pipes. 

Proper insulation, allowing faucets to drip during freezing temperatures, and keeping the home adequately heated can help prevent frozen pipes. If you suspect frozen pipes, it’s crucial to thaw them carefully to avoid further damage and potential flooding.

Septic Tank Problems

For homes with septic systems, issues with the septic tank can be a major concern. Common problems include septic tank backups, foul odors, slow drainage, or sewage surfacing in the yard. 

These issues can arise due to a full or clogged septic tank, drain field problems, or damage to the pipes. Professional septic tank maintenance, regular pumping, and proper disposal of waste can help prevent these issues. If problems persist, it’s essential to call a septic system professional to assess and resolve the problem.

Water Leaks in Walls or Ceilings

Water leaks hidden within walls or ceilings can go unnoticed for a long time, causing significant damage to the structure and promoting mold growth. These leaks may result from damaged or aging pipes, loose connections, or corrosion. 

Signs of water leaks include damp spots, water stains, or peeling paint. Identifying the source of the leak often requires professional assistance, as it may involve cutting into walls or ceilings to access the plumbing and perform necessary repairs.

Backed-Up Garbage Disposal

A malfunctioning garbage disposal can lead to clogs, unpleasant odors, and difficulty in kitchen cleanup. Common issues include clogged blades, jammed motors, or improper usage. Avoid disposing of hard or fibrous materials that can damage the disposal, and always run cold water while using it. 

Resetting the disposal or manually removing any blockages can often resolve minor problems. However, if the issue persists, it’s advisable to consult a professional for repair or replacement.

Water Pressure Fluctuations

Fluctuating water pressure can be frustrating, as it can disrupt daily activities like showering or washing dishes. Causes of water pressure fluctuations include problems with the municipal water supply, faulty pressure regulators, or clogged pipes. 

While adjusting the pressure regulator or cleaning fixtures can sometimes resolve the issue, it may be necessary to consult a plumber to diagnose and fix any underlying problems.

Leaking Washing Machine Hoses

Washing machine hoses are susceptible to leaks, especially as they age. A leaking hose can cause water damage to the surrounding area and potentially flood the laundry area. 

Regularly inspecting the hoses for cracks, bulges, or leaks and replacing them every few years can help prevent issues. Consider using stainless steel braided hoses, which are more durable and less prone to damage.

Sump Pump Failure

Sump pumps are crucial for preventing basement flooding by removing excess water. However, sump pump failure can occur due to power outages, mechanical issues, or float switch malfunctions. 

Regularly testing the sump pump and ensuring a backup power source, such as a battery or generator, can help mitigate the risk. If the sump pump fails, it’s important to address the issue promptly to prevent water damage and basement flooding.


Homeowners can encounter various plumbing issues, each with its causes and solutions. Homeowners can minimize plumbing issues and maintain a properly functioning system by understanding the common problems discussed in this guide and taking preventive measures. 

It’s crucial to address plumbing problems promptly and seek professional assistance from Edmonton residential plumbing to ensure effective repairs and prevent further damage to your home. Regular maintenance, awareness of potential issues, and timely action will help keep your plumbing system in excellent condition for years.

If you’re experiencing any plumbing issues or require professional help, don’t hesitate to contact a reliable and trusted plumber. They have the expertise and tools to effectively diagnose, repair, and maintain your plumbing system.

Take charge of your plumbing system’s well-being and enjoy knowing your home’s plumbing is in top condition. Stay vigilant, follow preventive measures, and remember that a well-maintained plumbing system contributes to your home’s comfort, convenience, and value.

Don’t wait until a minor plumbing issue turns into a major headache. Take action today and ensure a smooth and trouble-free plumbing system for your home.