Older homes will inevitably need a water main either repaired or replaced. The water main is a very important and integral part of any household, so it is necessary to keep it well maintained in order to avoid serious problems.

A plumbing contractor will be necessary if building a new water main into a new home, replacing a water main that has finally expired, or repairing an existing main. Individual water lines are connected to city water mains, so there are a few special considerations to remember before commencing any of the above.

Call the Local Public Works Department

The public works department will need to know beforehand, so they can mark any other lines in the vicinity. Since there is usually digging involved, it is important to make sure that no gas, power, or other lines are damaged while repairs or installation of a water main is in progress.

Follow all local ordinances, including the acquisition of any permits necessary, before beginning any work. Failure to do so could result in fines.

The plumbing contractor will be a great help in the permit process, because contractors are very familiar with all the local ordinances pertaining to their profession.

Important Details - Most people do not even think about where their water comes from or how it gets into their homes, so when problems occur, they are completely unprepared. Problems with the water supply often lead to water damage, especially if the problem goes unattended to for a while. The time between the discovery of the problem and the arrival of the plumber can sometimes be very crucial.

  • Where is the main water shutoff valve? ? Everyone should know where the main water shutoff valve for the home is located. Homes within the city limits that are equipped with a water heater generally have the valve located near the meter itself, if not actually with the meter.
  • How is the valve shut off? ? There are a variety of different main water shutoff valves. Some of them are merely handles that can be turned to shut off the water, while others have a flange that need a wrench to be manipulated. See which type is attached to the house, and if it requires a wrench, always keep one in a place that is easily accessible, just in case the time ever comes to shut off the water supply for whatever reason.
  • Are the site plans and water supply diagram available? ? If not, be certain to get a hold of these documents. It is important to know where everything is located when an emergency occurs. These will also be of great help to a plumber, making the needed work quicker and more efficient. It may even be enough to prevent more damage from occurring.