Sometimes you have a plumbing emergency. There’s no doubt about that. But other times, in the heat of the moment, it feels like a plumbing emergency, but it’s really not.
If it’s not an immediate emergency it should not be treated as such.
After all you don’t want to spend money on after hours service or an emergency one hour service trip charge if you don’t have to, right?
So how can you take the emotion out of the equation and make the rational choice?
We’ve found over the years that the best way to train our thought process is to work through some real life examples. Let’s go over some scenarios and think them through.
Scenario 1: Water heater
The water heater is leaking. Is this an emergency that can’t wait for a few hours to save a premium trip charge? It depends.
Can the heater be turned off at the control valve? If not can the gas valve to the heater be turned off? If not that is an emergency of the rarest kind. Call us right away!
Once the heater itself is turned off determine if the leaking water is going down a floor drain? If not, can the water valve above the heater be turned off and the heater drained by hose to the nearest pump pit or floor drain?
If the heater valve won’t work, can the main house shutoff be turned off in order to turn off the water supply to the heater?
If you can accomplish any of those tasks, you can schedule a call during regular hours and save the premium callout charges. If none of those things can be done, you have a plumbing emergency and you should call us right away.
Scenario 2: Sewer backing up
It’s raining and the sewer in your home is backing up into the basement. Is this an emergency that can’t wait for a few hours to save a premium trip charge?
First recognize that the damage from the sewer water is already done by the time you see it. It’s not going to get much worse, if at all, if you wait and save some money on the premium service.
Next, don’t use any water in the house. Don’t flush, run faucets or shower, etc. Then see if the water level in the basement still going up? If the answer is yes, then it could be your sump pump and not your sewer, or it could be the city sewer instead of your own.
- First, call Dyer Public Works department at 219-865-4225. If no response call the non-emergency police number. Simply ask if the sewers are backing up at your address and if they don’t know, to see if they can send an employee out to check. There’s no plumber on earth who can fix a flooded city sewer and prevent it from backing up into folks’ homes. If the city sewers are clear then you have a backup related to your home only.
- Next, while waiting for the city, check the sump pump. If it is not working check the circuit breaker for the pump. If the breaker is on and the pump is dead, check the backup pump to insure it is connected and working (you do have a backup pump in Dyer, right? It rains here—A lot!!). If you don’t have a backup pump call Yes! Plumbing right away. Your situation is an emergency.
If you eliminate the pumps and the city sewer as a problem, then your home sewer is the most likely culprit. It won’t get worse if you don’t use water or flush toilets.
Save the premium after hours or emergency plumber charges and schedule a regular service call with us. Phones are answered 24/7.
Scenario 3: Broken water line
The last example is a broken water line. This one’s pretty simple. Is there a valve at the leaking fixture that will work to shut off the water?
If so, your problem is solved until the plumber can get there within regular service hours and you can save the premium after hours or emergency charges.
If there is no valve for the local problem, locate the main shutoff valve for the house which is at the water meter location (and if it’s a hot water line you may be able to control it with the hot water heater valve).
If the main house valve does not work, then you have a bonafide emergency and need to do whatever it takes to get the water shut off.
In Dyer, Schererville, Munster, St. John and the surrounding communities call Yes! Plumbing at (708) 847-7045 for a live operator 24 hrs a day if you need an emergency plumber.