Emergency plumbers often work on weekends, holidays, and overnight. Working outside of normal business hours means there is an additional charge, so it's important to know when is the right time to call an emergency drain-cleaning service.
1. What Type of Wastewater Is Involved?
The water coming out of the drain helps determine whether the situation is an emergency. Blackwater contains raw sewage and other hazardous materials, so if the overflow is coming from the sewer line or a related fixture then the situation is an emergency. Graywater, on the other hand, is dirty but relatively safe. This would be water from the sinks, dishwasher, or washing machine. A graywater drain issue may not require immediate service.
2. Has the Overflow Stopped?
Usually, the actual backing-up part of the clog only lasts a few moments. The water may not drain back out, but more doesn't come up. Some major issues, though, can lead to an ongoing flow up the drain. For example, a broken valve on a sewer line can lead to sewage flowing endlessly into your home from farther down the municipal line. Call an emergency plumber right away if the flow is ongoing.
3. Is Property Damage a Major Concern?
A minor backup doesn't usually lead to major property damage beyond fixing the drain line. You may need to mop up some water and disinfect the room, but that's something you can handle. A major backup is when there is sufficient sitting water or water trapped between walls that severe moisture damage is a possibility. An emergency drain service can open up the drain quickly so the water drains out and damage mitigation can begin.
4. Are the Affected Fixtures Necessities?
Even a minor drain backup will render the affected fixture temporarily useless. This may not be a big deal if it's the bathroom sink or the dishwasher, but it can be an emergency if it's the only toilet or the home's main drain. If it's not possible to postpone the use of the fixture until regular business hours, then it makes sense to call in an emergency drain cleaning service.
5. Will There Be Safety Concerns?
It can be tempting to put off a call for help if the damage looks like it will be minor. Do keep in mind that safety risks may be present, though. A drain that backed up near an electrical box, for example, poses an electrocution and fire risk. If you notice anything that could be a hazard, consider calling in an emergency plumbing service instead of waiting.
For more information on drain cleaning, contact a company like Plumb Doctor.