What To Do In a Bathroom Plumbing Emergency

The avatar of Scott Kirschner

Scott Kirschner

May 10

Out of all the home improvement emergencies that come up, the most inconvenient and disruptive is a bathroom plumbing emergency. It can be hectic in the moment but there is no need to panic. We have some great tips for a DIY fix before requesting a quote from a service professional.

In this article, we will discuss tips to help you in various bathroom plumbing emergency situations—from leaky faucets to clogged toilets to bad smells. Keep reading for some helpful tips on what to do in a bathroom emergency in order to ease those stress levels.

Types of Bathroom Plumbing Emergencies

With bathroom plumbing, it’s not always just one thing that can go wrong, rather a combination of many things that could possibly end up costing big bucks. The first step in fixing the problem is figuring out what bathroom plumbing emergency you are dealing with.

Water temperature

Have you ever gone to take a shower and the water was scalding hot? Or there is no hot water at all? Extremely hot water is no fun and potentially dangerous if not dealt with. The cause of this particular plumbing emergency is your water heater overheating. When a bathroom plumbing emergency like this happens, make sure to turn off all hot water faucets, including the hot water valve on the hot water heater. Afterward, call a service professional to assess your water heater problem.

Another problem that can occur from a malfunctioning water heater (particularly an older gas furnace) is the pilot light going out. This prevents the hot water valve from heating. If you are comfortable and experienced, try lighting the pilot light following the instructions on the furnace. If not (and in most cases), we recommend calling a service professional for help.

Leaky faucets

Whether it’s your sink or bathtub, leaky faucets are annoying. They can run up your water bill and be a symptom of a bigger problem.

Though it may not seem like an emergency, it still needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Some tips to combat this issue include turning off the main shut-off valve for your home and calling a professional plumber. If there is a broken pipe, it’s best not to mess with it yourself or use chemicals in the pipes as it could create a bigger issue.

Running or clogged toilet

The most common bathroom plumbing emergency is toilet issues. Almost every household has encountered a running toilet. In this situation, open up the back tank and examine any problems occurring with the flapper or seal.

With clogged toilets, most home and office bathrooms come equipped with a trusty plunger. However, if plunging isn’t working to unclog the toilet, then it’s time to call a plumber.

Clogged drains

Sinks and bathtubs get daily use, and depending on the number of people in your household or office, it’s only a matter of time before the drains get clogged. There are a few things you can do when your bathroom sinks are draining slowly.

For a sink drain or an open shower drain, try using a plunger first to unclog it. If that does not work and you have an updated shower drain, try using a snake tool to fish out the source of the clog. If all else fails, try using chemical cleaners to eradicate the problem. Just make sure to get a drain cleaner that will work for your particular clogged drain.

If your drain is completely clogged and will not drain at all, it is best to call on a plumber and not try to fix it on your own.

Bathroom Plumbing Emergency Tips

Use your senses

It may seem obvious, but using your five senses is the best way to determine the severity of your bathroom plumbing emergency. Don’t ignore your smell, sound, touch, sight, and even taste (if applicable). It can give you the clues you need to know what is going on with your bathroom plumbing.

Be proactive and learn the equipment

There are always preventative measures to take in avoiding a bathroom plumbing emergency, and learning your bathroom plumbing equipment is one of them. Fully reading the directions on your equipment could save you from a major bathroom plumbing emergency.

Sign up for service.com

In most bathroom plumbing emergencies, it calls for the help of a plumbing professional. With service.com all you have to do is sign up as a requester and you will start receiving quotes from local, verified plumbers. This will make any future bathroom plumbing emergency a breeze. With service.com’s app, instant chat, and the ability to pay through an online invoice, service.com does everything in our power to make a stressful situation a little less stressful.


The avatar of Scott Kirschner

Scott Kirschner

May 10

Being the Marketing Director at service.com Scott works on automation for e-commerce as well as creative design. In his free time Scott plays in several bands around Detroit, MI. He enjoys backpacking through the outdoors and traveling across the world.