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Should You Get Your Plumbing Inspected After an Earthquake?

March 18, 2022 | Blog

On top of all the emotional stress and exterior damage, an earthquake can inflict on you and your home, this disaster can wreak havoc on your plumbing system. To protect yourself from a piping breakdown weeks after the event, analyze your home extensively for damage.

Contact Gotelli Plumbing for help with this post-earthquake survey and safety check. Our team can identify and resolve any of the following issues that may appear after a quake.

Seismic Valve Reset

Due to the frequency of tremors in California, your plumbing system is likely equipped with a seismic valve. To prevent a deadly line breakage and gas leak, this safety feature can sense intense vibrations, which prompts the valve to cut the flow of gas into your home.

After an earthquake, you’ll need to reactivate this feature. You can conduct a seismic valve reset independently by finding the valve outside of your home (it should be near your gas utility meter), taking a screwdriver, and placing it into the reset slot.

If you aren’t comfortable, however, professional gas line plumbers can help you with this process. Additionally, if your home does not have this feature, schedule a seismic gas shutoff valve installation as soon as possible.

Gas Line Breakage

In case your seismic valve doesn’t work, it’s essential to check your home for a gas leak after an earthquake. You can detect and respond to gas line breakage in the following ways:

  • Rely on smell to identify an issue. You will likely notice the pervasive scent of rotten eggs, which was added to natural gas by system manufacturers to help with leak detection.
  • You can also sometimes hear a leak, which will sound like a continuous hiss.
  • If you observe either of these, evacuate your home right away. At a safe distance, reach out to your local gas company to inform them of the leak.
  • After the gas company successfully shuts off your system, find gas line plumbers to lead the repair process.

Sewer Line Breakage

Like gas lines, intense vibrations can rupture sewer lines. Cracked pipes threaten the functioning of your tubs, sinks and countless other appliances.

Follow these steps to address potential sewer line issues:

  • Check for wet spots in your yard. A piping leak may become so severe that water pools outside of your home.
  • Pay attention to nasty smells in or around your home as well, as these may come from a septic tank leak.
  • Low water pressure from indoor faucets can also be a sign of a sewer line leak.
  • Occasionally, the leak will be audible, and you may hear the quiet sound of running water.
  • If you observe any of these signs, schedule a piping repair appointment with a nearby plumbing company.

Interior Leaking and Mildew

While a sewer line leak often occurs outdoors, pipes inside your home may have also suffered. You can check for interior leaking in the following ways:

  • Make note of any damp spots on your carpet or warped sections on wooden floors.
  • Also pay attention to any wet areas on your walls, as pipes within them may have burst.
  • Intense fluctuations in water pressure typically indicate piping damage, as do any noticeable burbling sounds inside your walls or floor.

Get Help from Gotelli Gas Line Plumbers

We know we get tremors and minor earthquakes all the time in Marin Country, but at its worst, earthquakes can cause a lot of damage. That’s why it’s essential to stay vigilant in your post-earthquake search for plumbing damage, thus preventing further suffering down the road.

Gotelli Plumbing is eager to assist you in the event of an earthquake. Our team can conduct a seismic gas shutoff valve installation or reset. Additionally, we offer leak detection and sewer line repair services.

Schedule a service appointment today to start restoring your home.

Why Choose Gotelli Plumbing?

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Our goal is to give every customer the best plumbing service available. Our technicians are professional and well-trained to make sure we achieve that goal.
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We're a family-run business living and working in Marin County, so treating our neighbors like family is the center of our values.
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Our technicians are background checked and trained in the latest plumbing advancements to ensure you get the service your home or business deserves.

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Very professional, very accommodating and very successful unclogging solution to our plumbing emergency. Many thanks!

Michael M.

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It was great working with Sam S! He’s fast and efficient. He found the problem in a matter a few short minutes. Then he had the part delivered to our home. Thank you!!!

Stephen S.

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Cory was very professional, courteous, thorough, and fixed the problem. Also, the women I spoke with on Friday morning was also very courteous and accommodating . 5 stars for sure!!!

Chris H.

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Cory came out to inspect a questionable smell from under my house and quickly was able to identify the source – a decomposing rat that my pest control guy was on able to locate after three previous visits! Thank you Cory for your fast and efficient service and a pleasant attitude!

Rebecca C.

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The response from Gotelli Plumbing was excellent. The next time Tom arrived right on time and the quality of his work was outstanding. When he finished he walked me through everything he had done and I could not have been more pleased with the results. I’m so thankful to have such professionals available when need and on such short notice.

Raymond R.

Excellent Service

Tom provided excellent service. He is obviously experienced- and quickly solved the problem. Our gas had to be shut off, so we were without our stove to cook, furnace to heat and hot water. Our home is happy again!

Keith B.

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Tom of Gotelli Plumbing provided superb service for us in replacing a very balky tub spout, and worn out toilet parts. Not only was he extremely professional and thorough but he was able to answer all my questions concerning the service. I would give 6 stars if I could.

Edward D.

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Tom has worked on numerous plumbing issues in our home over the years. He’s always on time, polite, hard working and an excellent plumber overall. I strongly recommend Tom R. for any plumbing jobs you need! We’ll continue to use Tom for all our future plumbing problems. Thanks!

Rachel C.

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Fantastic service from Steve, who came to our home on time, surveyed the issue, and came back to fix the problem – all with a smile.

Bill D.

Great Experience

I had a great experience with Gotelli Plumbing when we needed a leak in a pipe fixed. Tom was professional and friendly. He also got the job done faster than original estimated, so the work was less expensive than I anticipated. I will use Gotelli Plumbing again in the future.

Kendall F.

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Water heater died just in time for Thanksgiving company to arrive. Gotelli sent Joey out first thing this morning. Not only was Joey a super nice guy, he fixed our heater quickly and for $450 less than a competitors bid. Will be going to these guys for all of our plumbing needs in the future!

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