Household Plumbing Handbook


Your plumbing system requires regular maintenance in order to run smoothly and last for years to come. A plumbing system that runs well can save you money on expensive repairs and adds to the convenience of your home. Whether you are looking for information on plumbing repair or plumbing for home renovations, Butler Plumbing, Heating and Gasfitting in Edmonton shares some summarized information on important things you’ll need to know about your plumbing system.

Why hire a professional plumber in the first place?

Like any intricate mechanical system, your plumbing system will require specific troubleshooting knowledge, repair and replacement techniques and the right tools to do it. Hiring someone with knowledge and experience will be to your benefit. More than that, plumbers in Edmonton have a working knowledge of local building codes and will ensure the methods used are compliant with these regulations. Doing it yourself and incorrectly could cause costly repairs in the future, get you into trouble and might not protect your family’s health and safety.

A plumber will have proper licensing to do the work in your house. This demonstrates their competence of technical and practical knowledge ensuring the job is done correctly and to code. A licensed plumber will also be responsible for getting permits or any inspections required by your jurisdiction in order to enforce the code as well.

General Plumbing Issues:

Frozen pipes:

In Alberta’s harsh winter climate, having your pipes freeze can happen if preventative action isn’t taken and it could cause some big expensive problems. In some cases, a frozen pipe can be mistaken for a clogged drain, but the course of action and repercussions are very different.

If you suspect you might have frozen pipes, inspect any part of your plumbing system that is exposed. If you see any bulging on the pipes, it means that there is freezing. Small pipes will freeze faster than large pipes. If you have one frozen pipe, you likely have another hiding in the wall somewhere.  Thawing out your pipes is a job left for professional plumbers in Edmonton.

To help prevent frozen pipes:

– Always disconnect your garden hose in the fall and turn off the water supply to your outdoor faucets.
– Make sure your water pipes that are exposed to outside/uninsulated walls or low temperatures are covered with insulation.
– If you have plumbing in your garage, never leave the door open for a long period of time in the winter.
– Pipes installed underground need to be below the frost line to prevent freezing.

Leaky pipes:

Plumbing Leak

If you see moisture or water stains on your walls or ceiling, it could mean you have a leaky pipe. This needs to be taken care of immediately. If left alone, the water will continue to do more damage to your insulation, drywall, framing, windows, floor and other parts of your home. Moisture in the walls can also promote the growth of mould and mildew which is hazardous to your health and will have to be removed at further cost.

If you suspect you have a leak, turn off your main water line and call a plumber. They will be able to find and repair the problem before more damage is done.

Water heaters:

We usually don’t give our hot water heaters much thought until something goes wrong. Usually when something goes wrong, it means a flood of water in your basement. Storage tank hot water heaters have a 7 to 10-year lifespan. They can start to corrode and wear out inside the tank and near the bottom and before giving any warning signs, can start to leak. If you notice a leak from the bottom of your tank, shut off the water supply, drain the tank and call Butler Plumbing for a hot water tank replacement. If the leak is from the top of the tank, it might be able to be fixed.

Signs that your water heater needs repair or replacement include any visible leaks, pooling water at the base of the tank, visible rust on connecting parts or the tank itself, noticing that water isn’t being heated properly or that your water smells or tastes funny.

Plumbing in the Kitchen:


Because the drain in the kitchen sink is often the drain used the most in the house, it is also the drain that most often gets clogged. Culprits are washing down bits of food, coffee grounds and other debris, but the main cause is cooking oil and fats that build up in your pipes, including the main lines that go out to the sewer. Other debris can get caught up in this layer of grease and cause a clog. In most cases, these clogs are something you can fix yourself. If you can’t get it unclogged and it seems unreachable, you’ll have to call Butler Plumbing for professional drains and sewer cleaning.


If you have a leaky faucet in your house, do not dismiss it as a minor problem. A dripping faucet will lose more water than you think over time and can really add up on your water and drainage bill. They can be caused by broken or damaged seals, hard water deposits or other internal part of the faucet being damaged. Learn how to fix a leaky faucet.


Your dishwasher is attached to your plumbing and sometimes it can leak. Depending on the issue, you might have to hire an appliance repair company to repair your dishwasher if the leak is outside of your home’s regular plumbing system.

Plumbing in the Bathroom


If you have a clogged toilet, a plunger can normally handle this problem. If it doesn’t, you should call a Butler Plumbing. If you have stains or moisture at the base of the toilet bowl, it could mean that a seal or joint has failed and you should call a plumber.

Running toilets are a common plumbing problem and means that the tank is leaking either from the supply valve or that the rubber tank flapper isn’t sealing properly. This fix is relatively easy and something you could do yourself. It could also be the rod that connects the tank float to the supply valve. Check to make sure it isn’t bent, leaving the valve open and allowing the leak.


If your bathtub drain is clogged, it’s likely due to hair and soap residue. Try to dislodge the gunk using a regular plunger. If this doesn’t work, open the drain plug and see if you can remove the hair clump with plyers or another tool. Chemical drain cleaners can eat away at the clog, but be careful not to use it too often has the chemical can harm your pipes over time and repetitive use. If the clog persists, call Butler Plumbing to take care of it for you.


If your shower head gets clogged, it is likely a sign that you have hard water and mineral deposits are building up. You can use a household cleaner like CLR to clean the shower head or free the holes with a needle. The problem will continue unless you invest in a water softener. Not only will a water softener reduce mineral build up that could be harming the rest of your plumbing system, it will also prevent dry and itchy skin and reduce the wear and tear on your appliances.

Signs you have issues with your plumbing:

Noises: If you hear chattering noises then there is something wrong with your plumbing system. It could mean you have loose pipes or connections, resulting in leaks in the pipes, fixtures and tanks.

Smelly water: If there is an unusual odour coming from your plumbing, it could mean that sewer gas is leaking into your system or there is a problem with the ventilation. Though it is gross, it isn’t deadly and still needs to be fixed. A plumber will inspect and test the system to find the location of the leak and fix it for you.

High water bills: If you’ve noticed a sudden spike in your water bill, it could mean you have a leak somewhere. Contact a plumber to inspect the plumbing system and fix the leak. If you leave it too long, you will have more expensive water damage to deal with.

Learn more tell-tale signs your plumbing is in trouble.

Plumbers in Edmonton

Providing both Commercial and Residential plumbing and heating service in Edmonton and surrounding area. Butler Plumbing is dedicated to our customers while providing reliable, honest, high quality service. Customers can rest easy knowing the job is being done professionally, with all work guaranteed.

If you have questions about your plumbing system, require plumbing repair or want to rough in some new plumbing for a home renovation, contact Butler Plumbing, Heating & Gasfitting!


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