Video: What's the Best Plumbing Pipe for Your Home?

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Take off the lid to the tank and check inside.  There should be a small hose going into a larger pipe near the middle of the tank right next to the flapper.  When you flush the toilet water squirts from that hose into the pipe.  If it isn't in place put it back so that water goes down that pipe once again.  This is what refills your bowl.  If water does not come out of the little hose check to see if it is kinked or blocked.  You can take it off and blow air through it.  Don't worry, it's only clean water that goes through the hose.  If it is clear and water does not come out of the short pipe where it attaches on the flush valve then there is a clog in that valve and it will probably need to be replaced.  These are $10-20 at any home improvement store and even Wal-Mart.  The instructions are simple and you can do it yourself in about 15 minutes.  Check the washer on the supply hose to the toilet while it is off to replace the flush valve.  If it is old or worn replace the hose as well.  It is cheap insurance of only a few dollars which is a lot cheaper than a failed hose or washer causing water to leak.


If you don't feel comfortable replacing the fill valve, if it is needed, a handyman can do it fairly cheap.  Whereas a plumber or other contractor will have a minimum charge of $100-200 a handyman might do it for about $50.


Todd Shell

Todd's Home Services

San Antonio, TX


From the sounds of it, you have a clog between the floor drain and the connection to the city sewer (unless you have a septic tank).  The lower flow rates of sinks / showers / dishwashers probable don't cause a backup like the washing machine does.  A couple of suggestions.

1.  Snake the drain line with a spade tip snake, twisting the snake as you advance it.  This should clear the partial blockage.

 2.  If feasable, have your washing machine discharge into a utility sink and put a strainer on the drain to catch the clothing fibre (fibres and grease from the sink probably made the clog in the first place not to mention a garbage disposal).

3.  Replace your floor drain with one that has a backflow preventer (looks like there is a ping pong ball in it).

 Good Luck

It is not uncommon for a plumber to have to go get the parts necessary to repair and complete the job.  It is very hard to determine what the problem is over the phone and it is not until the repair process begins that the parts needed to resolve the problem is discovered.  It may also depend on if the plumber is using hourly rates or per job rates.  I would hope the time to get the parts would be minimal and the charge would be as well!

Well , you've certainly started a debate that will endure forever , but personally , having worked with both products , PEX is a better product . Now granted , the 1st time i used it

I was not impressed , cause it leaked.......NOT because the product was at fault, it was because I did not understand how to use the product !

The trick to using Pex , is to make certain that the fittings seat, they MUST be pushed together with force, and if you do not push with force to get the seat to seal, it leaks .

Therefore , when using PEX , you have constantly to be aware of leaving room to make your connections -Properly !

The beauty of PEX is that it bends , it is flexible and decreases the labor factor ,although the connection costs are often 100-300 % higher than copper , but again , it can cut labor costs in half  and it is safer to work with,  NO FLAMEs!