Frequently Asked Questions

What Does Gas from a Water Heater Smell Like?

If your water heater is leaking gas or has a gas combustion issue, you’ll likely smell sulfur or what some describe as “rotten eggs.” However, it’s important to note that natural gas is odorless. To make detecting leaks easier, gas companies add mercaptan, a chemical that gives it that highly recognizable sulfur-like smell. Once you smell the rotten egg smell, shut off the gas to the water heater immediately and leave your house. Call your gas company right away to check for leaks and water heater experts to fix or replace the system.

What Causes Tanked Water Heaters to Explode?

There are multiple potential causes of water heater explosion, but most occur due to pressure problems. A broken temperature and pressure (T&P) relief valve, sediment buildup, or a bad anode rod are all dangers that can lead to an explosion. A gas leak can also cause an explosion, as it creates a major fire risk. While a T&P relief valve helps to regulate pressure, over time, the pressure can still wear down your tank. If the T&P valve starts leaking or frequently opens, you’ll likely have a pressure problem. If too much pressure builds up inside your water heater, it will eventually burst.

What Size of Sewer Line Is Best for My House?

The standard pipe size for your sewer line is usually 4 inches. The local code will usually specify the required pipe material and size. Most jurisdictions have similar requirements for pipe sizes, but each jurisdiction may have slight variations and/or additions/deletions to the code. When it comes to sewer line sizes, a common misconception is that bigger is always better, which is not the case. Larger pipes spread the pressure required to help solid wastes move through the pipe. So, installing a larger pipe may slow the flow of water and cause water pooling.

Are Water Line Breaks and Repairs Covered by Insurance?

If your water line breaks and you need repairs, most homeowners insurance will not cover the costs unless the line has undergone sudden, significant damage. For instance, if a water line breaks on your property due to age, shifting soil, ground temperature changes, poor initial installation, regular wear and tear, encroaching tree roots, or pest damage, your insurance won’t likely cover the break and resulting water damage. However, if you dig in your yard and accidentally damage the water line running from your meter, your homeowners' insurance may cover the repairs and cleanup.

Why Does My Sump Pump Smell Like Rotten Eggs?

If the smell coming from your sump pump reminds you of rotten eggs, and there’s water inside the pit, sewage may have entered your sump pit. Since your sump pump collects water under your property’s foundation, a sewer line may have broken, causing the sewage and your foundation water to merge. There should always be some still water in your sump pit. That water protects your basement or crawl space against underground gases and sewage from going up. When there isn’t any water in the pit, and it’s dry, those underground gases enter your basement causing a rotten egg smell.

Have a plumbing question? Need expert answers? The plumbing experts at Plumb Perfect Plumbing are ready to answer your questions and provide dependable plumbing services. Call us today at 540-388-1485 to schedule service.