A burst pipe is rarely a scenario people find appealing. It’s also something only a few of them can fix without the help of a professional. However, there might still be a couple of things you can do before & after expert assistance arrives at the scene. In today’s text, we’ll show you what to do when a pipe bursts in your home. Just so you don’t act all unprepared when the unfortunate event chooses to strike your home. Okay, so shall we begin? Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to act when dealing with a burst pipe!
#1 Shut off the water supply and drain the pipes
Here’s the thing: a burst pipe will enable water to flood your home, which is undoubtedly not what you wished for last Christmas. So, how should one prevent further damage? You’ll want to spot the main water supply and shut it off to block the water flow. That way, you’ll avoid making things worse for yourself. Also, don’t forget to fully drain the pipes by flushing all the toilets and leaving the faucets on until the last drop has fallen into your sinks, tubs, whatever, etc. In other words, you’ll need to relieve any remaining pressure in your piping system. Lastly, depending on where the leak occurred, you might need to do away with electricity by shutting it off.
#2 Use your investigative skills to locate the leak
Okay, so the taps have been dealt with. Now it’s time to use your detective skills and determine where the leak is. It can be anywhere – kitchen, basement, bathroom, you name it. However, if you want to fully minimalize the damage, you’ll need to spot the problem area in the fastest manner possible. That’s right; you’ll also want to be cautious and thorough during your investigation, inspecting every nook and cranny. Keep an eye out for bulging ceilings or floors or even water spots in your home’s walls. Once you notice the leak, you should try plugging it with rags to avoid further mishaps. Lastly, you’ll want to position a bucket underneath the spot where there’s a drip to prevent additional damage to your flooring.
#3 Reach out to professionals
The next step might be the most obvious: immediately contact a plumbing pro to help you deal with the issue. That way, you’ll make sure that your pipe is repaired quickly and in the most efficient manner. Trying to go DIY here isn’t recommended. Your best bet is to rely entirely on professionals. You might want to transfer specific parts of your home’s inventory to another place (such as a storage room or a third-party storage facility); suggest the folks at Movers not Shakers. Just so the plumbers have plenty of space to do what they do best. Plus, you’ll ensure your stuff stays safe during the necessary renovations.
#4 Clean up the mess
Once the pipes are drained of the remaining water, and you’ve found the leak and called pros to the rescue, you’ll want to locate your trusty mop and handle the mess the burst pipe made. Trust us; you don’t wish the water to soak anywhere inside your home. Also, you’ll do your best to prevent the unfortunate appearance of mold. In other words, you’ll significantly decrease the chances of its settlement inside your place.
#5 Take inventory of damage done
Next up, you’ll want to write down the damage done to your property and possessions. Simply document all the issues using a digital camera or your smartphone. You’ll need these as references for your insurance claims later on. Also, save any receipts for repair expenses coverage since it’s one of the most important things when considering what to do when a pipe bursts in your home.
#6 Talk to your insurance agent
Were you aware that water damage and freezing account for somewhere around 22% of all homeowners insurance claims? We got this information from the folks over at the Insurance Information Institute. Issues with water damage caused by a burst pipe are usually covered under your regular homeowner’s policy. Therefore, you should reach out to your insurance agent as soon as possible.
#7 Take preventive measures
Of course, you don’t want to go through all of this once more. That being said, you should take some preventive measures in order to make sure you won’t have to experience burst-pipe issues ever again. Okay, so the so-called temperature alert threshold for frozen piping is 20°F (-7°C). Therefore, once temperatures choose to drop, you’ll need to guarantee that your pipes stay warm to prevent them from freezing. Here are some tips on how to do it:
- Keep your thermostat set to, at the very least, 55°F (around 13°C). This also stands for when you’re leaving your home for only a couple of days.
- You might want to slightly turn on the faucets in order to keep the water flowing.
- Keep the under-the-sink cabinet doors open. That way, you’ll make sure that the heat reaches uninsulated pipes.
- Also, think about something you’d call a more long-term solution to the problem: insulating exposed pipes, especially the running along the exterior of your home.
- You’ll need to caulk and seal any leaks inside and outside of your home, leaks that allow the cold air to get close to your piping system.
- Lastly, pay some good attention to the pipes located in the unheated areas of your home. We’re talking about basements, attics, crawl spaces, and outside walls. This is especially important if you’re living in an area that enjoys a southern-type climate, where homes weren’t built with the idea of potential freezing in mind.
By following all of these tips, you’ll make sure that your pipes remain safe from various plumbing emergencies!
Final words on the subject
There you have it, folks! These were some tips on what to do when a pipe bursts in your home. As you could’ve read, none of these suggestions require much effort invested. However, once a pipe bursts in your home, you’ll need to react ASAP, which is what counts the most!