The Dangers of Old Pipes in Your Home

The Dangers of Old Pipes in Your Home

Piping is probably among the last things on your mind when it comes to maintaining your home, and yet they play a vital role in protecting your health and ensuring water runs throughout your house. While pipes and plumbing systems can last a long time without any issues, regular inspections and maintenance are still necessary to ensure no damage or corrosion can impact your health and otherwise cause problems around your home. 

If you live in an older building, pipes that have not undergone routine maintenance could pose a health hazard while causing your water bills to rise. If you are still determining the state of your plumbing system, calling professionals to assess your pipes can prevent costly and hazardous problems from occurring. Here are some of the dangers and issues posed by old piping systems in older homes. 

Metal Contamination 

One of the hazards posed by water running in old piping systems is that it could be leaching lead, iron, copper, cadmium, and other toxic metals into the water around your home. Drinking water with excessive amounts of copper can cause stomach and intestinal problems that could lead to symptoms like vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, and more. 

Additionally, ingesting lead can result in serious harm to your brain, kidneys, and nervous system. Ingesting toxic metals is one of the most dangerous risks associated with older pipes, so be sure to have your plumbing system assessed if you are living in an old home. 

Low Water Pressure 

Water that leaches metal oxides into the plumbing system can lower water pressure throughout your home, leading to clogged pipes and longer wait times. This will drive up the time spent filling up appliances like dishwashers and washing machines while leading to frustrating shower experiences. 

Furthermore, it can harm your water heater as water pressure continues to fall and clogs build up around your home’s plumbing system. While this may not be a health hazard like metal contamination, the effects can be pretty destructive on your wallet, which is why you need to be wary of it. 

Poor Water Quality And Rust

Iron cast pipes, also known as galvanized pipes, were commonly used in constructing houses priors to the 1960s, but they can be hazardous and lead to poor water quality. Over some time, the metal will begin rusting, building into blocks along the water passages that can contaminate your tap water. 

If you notice your water tasting funky or different from usual, it is time to call for an inspection to check the quality and state of your piping system. If you live in a home with older galvanized pipes, consider replacing them with new pipes for your safety.

Bacteria And Viruses 

Another hazard associated with aging pipes is the risk they bring with introducing bacteria and viruses into your drinking water. Every year communities across the United States experience water main breaks and leaks from sewer pipes that contaminate drinking water. In other scenarios, older water treatment plants fail to remove bacteria, parasites, and viruses from the water, which is why you may notice a smell like rotten eggs or sage from your tap water. If you see this, you must call a professional quickly to avoid it causing further harm to your health. 

What Can You Do?

 If you live in an older home and are experiencing issues with your plumbing or have concerns, calling professional plumbing services is the best course of action to protect your health and ensure your piping system is working the way it should. If you require plumbing assistance, Flamingo Plumbing and Backflow offers quality services to address any needs you may have. Contact us today to learn more or schedule an appointment.