Cold Water Plumbing

In BC we have a service called BC One Call (www.bconecall.bc.ca, 1800-474-6886) that can help you with general area information over the phone.

More specific diagrams and measurements can be obtained usually within a few days, even via email.

They are an excellent resource and chances are your municipality is a member so by living in the area, the service is free.


They do! Local building codes keep interior pipes away from outside walls where they are more likely to freeze but pipes still need to be taken care of. The most common bursts we see from frozen pipes are from hose bibs.

Some good practices to prevent freezing include:

  1. Insulating lines that might be subjected to freezing.
  2. Installing frost free hose bibs
  3. If you are flying south for the winter or leaving your home for an extended period, it is a good idea to keep your heat set at a minimum of 55F.

If you turn your taps on and nothing comes out, your pipes might be frozen.  It is suggested that you turn off your water supply to prevent flooding as they thaw and then call R&B.

At this point it’s possible that the pipes are just frozen and not yet burst. If this is the case we will assist in thawing out your pipes and if we find one has burst or broken we will promptly replace the line.

A burst pipe is a major emergency! Shut off your main water valve, drain the taps, and call us immediately to repair the pipe.

Pipes rattling when you run your taps or appliances can also be called “Water Hammer” because of the banging noise that sometimes occurs. While this is not an uncommon problem, attending to it can help prevent unnecessary wear and tear on your pipes.

Some typical reasons for pipes ratting when water is run through your house could be:

  1. One or more pipes are loose. When the pipes expand due to heat or are subject to high water pressure, they can flex against a part of the house’s structure and create noise. Think of your plumbing in this case like a firehose; it’s easy to coil when it’s empty but water pressure causes it to straighten and restrict movement.
  2. The pressure reducing valve on your water service is faulty. This valve is often installed right where your water service enters the house.
  3. Hammer arrestors installed on dishwashers and washing machines are missing or faulty.

These problems can and should be remedied. They can help keep your pipes in good condition and prevent them from creating annoying, disruptive noises.

If your toilet is making odd gurgles, tinkles or even moans, you are not alone! Often these are just signs that your toilet has a slow leak in the stopper valve. You may also notice things like low water in the bowl. If this is the case, it’s time for a fix. Call our office and we will schedule a time that works well for you.

A cartridge is a part inside your faucet that acts as a valve. When it works properly it will open and close to distribute hot and cold water as well as mix the two.

Not all faucets include this part, but those that do can be repaired instead of having to replace the entire faucet.  The same is true if your tap is dripping or seems faulty.  Better quality faucets come with lifetime warranties for parts so keep your receipts.

To close the valve that connects the municipal water service and your home you need a kind of tool called shut off key. If you live in the City of Vancouver you can borrow one from the City.

The North Shore is different, there are two versions used in the area so you will need to know the specific key in order to finish the job. R&B has both at its disposal, call our office to retrieve the proper version today.

There are a couple of key indicators that let you know that you have a problem with you water line.

  1. You have a water meter and you have noticed a sudden increase in your bill.
  2. You notice a constant stream coming from your property that doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the rain, or there are puddles forming in your yard.
  3. More alarmingly, water seems to be seeping from cracks in your house or it’s foundation.

Many of the causes of problems with your water line are out of your control. Environmental factors like weather can cause a lot of damage perhaps without you realizing. Drops in the temperature can cause pipes to crack, especially if you have gone away during the winter and not shut off your main water valve. If you notice any of the listed problems after the temperature drops then a problem with your water line is a likely source of your issue.

Did you know that the water line running from your home to the street is your responsibility to repair and maintain? If it needs to be replaced, trenching through gardens and driveways can be extremely disruptive and expensive.

Thankfully, R&B has a better way! Trenchless water line replacement can be a great alternative and we can determine if this is the right solution for you with a free onsite inspection. Call our office today to schedule an appointment.