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Frequently Asked Questions
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Grand Oaks Plumbing & Drain|Spring, TX 77386|(936) 647-0069

Frequently Asked Questions

I Think I Have A Leak; What Should I Do?

Shut the water to the home off either at the water inlet to the house or at the meter then open all the faucets in the home to drain the system. Next, call Grand Oaks Plumbing & Drain for repairs.

Why Should I Hire A Licensed Plumber?

In Texas, a plumber is not just someone who knows how to plumb. We start as apprentices. We have to have a minimum of 4,000 hours working under a master plumber in order to be eligible to test for our tradesman license. A total of 4,000 hours is equivalent to two years, like an associate's degree. The test typically takes about six hours to complete. We have to be trained in OSHA, plumbing license law, and plumbing code. In order to be eligible for our journeyman license, we have to put in a total of 8,000 hours, about four years. This is equivalent to a bachelor's degree. More OSHA training is also needed. This also makes us able to work on commercial buildings. Master plumbers have a minimum of 8,000 hours plus four calendar years. A journeyman is required to take a six- to eight-hour hour test in Austin. A license is required for someone to become a plumber. With all the experience gained during this time, and full knowledge of plumbing license law and plumbing code requirements, why would you want to hire a non-licensed person to perform plumbing work in your home?

What Is Plumbing "Code"?

Plumbing code is laid out in two main categories; and depending on the jurisdiction of the area you are working, a plumber has to follow these codes. The two that we follow are UPC (Uniform Plumbing Code) and IPC (International Plumbing Code). Simply put, code is the approved method by which to make sure the plumbing in your home is safe. It is all about safety and protecting the health of the nation.

What Is The Appropriate Height For A Gas Water Heater?

Due to the burner being at the bottom of natural gas and liquid propane water heaters and those burners being a possible ignition source, the minimum height requirement for a gas water heater is 18 inches off the ground.

How Do I Fix A Leak In The Plumbing In My Shower/Bath?

If you have a bathtub faucet that is either dripping from the tub spout or showerhead when the valve is turned off, you most likely need to replace the cartridge inside the valve. We offer this service at a competitive price; however, if you are a “do-it-yourselfer,” there are many YouTube videos and "how-to" videos on the internet.

I Moved My Toilet’s Location During A Remodel (Or A New Floor Install), And Now It Leaks At The Base. How Do I Fix This?

This issue occurs often when remodeling or new floors have been installed. The closet flange is what connects the toilet to the drain system. The wax ring is what seals the toilet to the closet flange. A closet flange is meant to sit on top of the finished floor. When new floors like tile are installed, the flange is now lower than the finished floor. The new wax ring that is installed when re-installing the toilet typically does not compress fully, causing water to seep out as the toilet is used. We will always recommend replacing the closet flange so that the new one is set properly above the finished floor so the wax ring can compress fully for a good seal.

Why Does My Toilet And/Or Shower Bubble Or Overflow When I Run The Washing Machine?

If you are hearing gurgling or the tub/shower begins to have water come up from the drain when the washing machine drains, this is most likely due to a stoppage or obstruction in the drain line. The gurgling is the air attempting to escape as the drain line fills up. The reason you may have water coming up in the shower or tub is due to it being the lowest drain. This could be remedied by using a sewer machine to cable the drain and clear any obstruction or hydro jetting the drain lines to pressure wash them to clear grease, soap scum, hair, etc. Worst case, you could have a break, roots, or a low spot in the drain line causing solids to collect. We have many options for resolving these types of issues.

Do Unused Drains Dry Up And Get Rough Inside?

Yes, unused drains will dry out; and depending on the material used for the drain lines, they can get rough and build up with rust. You will typically see this in bathtubs, showers, and sinks that don't get used. Along with them drying up, this will be accompanied by a sewer smell. Once the “P-trap” (plumber trap: the U-shaped drain pipe under sinks, tubs, and showers) water dries up, it will allow sewer gas to come into the home. We always recommend running water in the unused fixtures once a week to prevent this from happening.

Can Clogged Vents Stop Up Drains?

We have never run across a clogged vent that stopped up a drain, but this issue will cause problems. When the drain vent gets clogged, the fixture may drain slowly or more frequently cause the water to siphon out of the P-trap. This then causes the sewer smell in the fixture.

When Should I Replace My Water Heater?

In our area, water heaters typically last eight to 10 years on average. Now, if you properly maintain the water heater, it could last quite a bit longer. Most homeowners are not aware of the maintenance needed for standard tank water heaters. Most manufacturers recommend flushing the water heater once a year to prolong the life of the unit. The T&P valve (temperature and pressure relief valve) is supposed to be replaced every two to four years. The sacrificial anode rod, depending on the water quality in your area, may need to be replaced at least once in the water heater's lifespan. Cleaning the burner chamber every three to four years will help heat water more efficiently and reduce overheating which will cause the unit to shut down. Obviously, if the heater is leaking, rusted, never maintained, or there are safety hazards, it is time to replace the heater. We can come out and do a thorough visual inspection of the water heater and give you options for maintaining, repairing, or replacing the unit. Our annual water heater service plan includes: 

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