Water lines exposed in wall for leak repair.

Top 5 Plumbing Issues in Older Homes

Owning an older home comes with a unique set of charms and challenges. While the architecture may exude character and history, the plumbing system often tells a different story. Aging pipes and fixtures can lead to a variety of common plumbing issues that homeowners of older properties frequently encounter.

Let’s explore the top five plumbing problems in older homes. And more importantly, let’s looks at some practical solutions to address them.

  1. Leaking Pipes
  2. Low Water Pressure
  3. Clogged Drains
  4. Running Toilets
  5. Water Heater Problems

Leaky Pipes

One of the most prevalent issues in older homes is leaky pipes. Over time, pipes can corrode, develop cracks, or loosen at their joints, leading to leaks that can cause water damage and mold growth. In addition, piper can develop bellies or sagging due to shifts in the soil.

To repair leaking pipes, it’s critical to identify the location of the leak and replace the damaged section of the pipe. In some cases, a simple patch or tightening of connections may suffice, but professional assistance may be necessary for more extensive repairs.

cracked sewer pipe under home in Boerne, TX

Low Water Pressure

Decreased water pressure is another common complaint among owners of older homes. This can be attributed to mineral buildup, sediment accumulation, or corrosion within the plumbing system. It can also be due to an increased demand on the water supply from new housing construction. 

To restore adequate water pressure, consider cleaning or replacing aerators, showerheads, and faucet cartridges. Additionally, flushing the water heater and clearing out any obstructions in pipes can help improve water flow.  In cases, where the issue is due to the water supply, you may need to have a water pressure booster installed.

Clogged Drains

Older homes are prone to drain clogs due to the buildup of hair, grease, soap scum, and other debris over the years. Regular maintenance is essential to prevent clogs from occurring. Using drain strainers, avoiding pouring grease down the drain, and periodically flushing drains with hot water and vinegar can help keep them clear.

For stubborn clogs, utilizing drain cleaning services may be the best choice.  A plumber will use a plumbing snake to remove blockages. It’s also important to note that in old homes, drain issues can sometimes be due to settling of the drainage pipes.

Running Toilets

A running toilet is not only annoying but can also waste a significant amount of water and inflate your water bills. In older homes, worn-out flapper valves or faulty fill valves are common culprits behind this issue. Replacing these components or adjusting the water level in the tank can often resolve the problem. However, if the toilet continues to run despite these efforts, it may indicate a more serious underlying issue that requires professional attention.  Olde Town Plumbing provides both toilet repair and toilet replacement services.

Water Heater Problems

Older water heaters are prone to sediment buildup, corrosion, and efficiency issues.  Unfortunately, this can lead to inadequate amounts of hot water or a breakdown of the water heater altogether. Regularly performing water heater maintenance including flushing the water heater annually to remove sediment and inspecting the anode rod for signs of corrosion can help extend its lifespan.

However, if the water heater is nearing the end of its life expectancy (in Central Texas 6-10 years due to the hard water conditions) or experiencing major issues, such as leaks, it may be time to consider replacing the water heater.  We always recommend Boerne residents install a water softener to protect their water heater, appliances, fixtures, and all other plumbing related items due to the high mineral content of the Hill Country water.

Call the Olde Town Plumbers for Repair Service

Rob Williams from Olde Town Plumbing in Boerne, TX installs a gas line for a fireplace.

While owning an older home may present certain plumbing challenges, proactive maintenance and timely repairs can help mitigate these issues and ensure the continued functionality of your plumbing system. By addressing common problems such as leaky pipes, low water pressure, clogged drains, running toilets, and water heater issues, homeowners can preserve the integrity of their homes and enjoy peace of mind for years to come.

Call Olde Town Plumbing for professional plumbing repair services for Boerne, Fair Oaks Ranch, Bulverde, Timberwood Park, Helotes and more.


Our plumbers are always happy to help.


 Olde Town Plumbing at 830-446-5227.

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