It’s easy to forget about your plumbing. After all, it’s hidden inside your walls. But like any material used to build a home, pipes can and will degrade and deteriorate due to corrosion and rust. Whether you’ve lived in your home for decades or you’ve just moved in, it’s a good idea to consider the condition of your pipes and determine whether or not the plumbing system should be replaced.
If you’ve noticed any of these signs in particular, it’s likely time to upgrade or replace the pipes—they may be on their last legs. It’s always a good idea to get a second opinion from a reputable plumber as well.
1. A Strange Water Odour or Colour
The water coming out of your pipes should be relatively odour-free and clear in colour. If you’re noticing a strange smell, or the water is red in colour or looks dirty, it’s likely time for a replacement. These are signs that your pipes have significantly corroded, and there’s rust or mineral deposits in the water. Ignoring this warning sign can be bad for your health and lead to costly pipe problems, such as leaks, clogging, and more.
2. Extremely Noisy Pipes
As water rushes through your plumbing system, you’re going to hear it. However, you shouldn’t hear loud noises on a constant long-term basis. Clanking, whistling, and other strange noises can also indicate your pipes are old, clogged, or otherwise in need of an upgrade.
3. Burst Pipes
On those cold winter nights, the temperature can dip so low that your water pipes not only freeze but also burst. If you’ve ever dealt with this before, you know this situation can be an inconvenient and costly problem. If it’s a reoccurring problem, it’s time to replace those old pipes. Newest systems have the insulation needed to withstand cold temperatures.
4. An Old Home
If you’ve just bought an old home or your house was built long ago, it might be a good idea to consider replacing your plumbing. In the past, lead was often the material of choice for pipes. As you know, lead is a toxic material and should be replaced so you can prevent consuming water that’s come in contact with it. Polybutylene was another common material used in the past, and though it isn’t toxic, it is prone to breaking, so it’s best to upgrade before a catastrophic situation occurs.
Even if your plumbing system is made of more modern materials, such as PVC, steel, copper, brass, or galvanized steel, you will still eventually need to replace them, as they all have a shelf life.
Leaking pipes are never a good sign, but it’s common when your pipes are old. Corrosion and clogs, as well as, high water pressure, can weaken pipes, which can lead to cracks and leakage. Whether it’s a small leak or a big leak, this is a warning sign that you should get an inspection. Not seeking any leaks? Take a look at your water bill. If it’s unusually high, it likely indicates you have a leak somewhere in your system.
6. Low Water Pressure
Most homeowners ensure high water pressure when they wash dishes, take a shower, or flush the toilet. Low water pressure can be a pain, and it’s often caused by leaks or rust. Your pipes may be damaged and in need of a replacement.
If you’ve noticed any of these six signs, it’s best to call a plumber for an inspection before it’s too late. Waiting too long to replace your plumbing system could lead to a costly flood and damage.