Problems with pipes are very common, and the amount of damage caused is not always proportional to the difficult of the fix. Knowing what to do when you've got water flowing into your home is important in order to prevent damage and save your sanity. Follow these tips to keep dry.
A Few Quick Fixes
When you encounter a sudden leak, you need to find the water supply for the leaking area and turn it off right away. If you don't know if there is a valve for the water to the fixture, be safe and turn off the main water supply valve. Once you have turned off the water it is time to find the source of your leak so that you can fix it. You should determine if your problem is a split pipe, or just a pinhole leak in order to address it properly.
If you have a small pinhole leak, break off the point of a pencil point in the small hole and then wrap the area of pipe with electrician's tape.
Add some waterproof epoxy putty around the tape to ensure that it will not leak through. After 30 minutes, you can go ahead and turn on the water. As you do, watch your repaired area to make sure it is not leaking.
Another method is to wind a thick piece of rubber over the area of the hole, around the pipe, and use something like a clamp to ensure that the rubber is held tightly in place.
You might not have any rubber on hand. In that case, you can find an old garden hose and cut out a small section that you can then wrap around the pipe, again using a clamp to ensure that it stays secure and won't leak through your temporary fix while you are searching for more permanent solutions.
More Permanent Repairs
If you're looking to make a more permanent repair, there are some things you can try yourself at home before reaching out to a plumber for assistance. There are pipe clamps that are specially available to fix leaking pipes if the leak isn't bad enough to warrant a total pipe replacement.
These leak-fixing clamps have rubber affixed to the interior of the clamp, which is designed to surround your leaky pipe fully. All this fix requires is putting the clamp around the hole and then tightening the screws that are on the clamp. This makes an extra tight, almost permanent seal. You might have to check the pipe every once in a while to ensure the screws are still tight, though.
Another quick, more permanent fix for leaking pipes is the use of braided metal tubing with compression clamps on either end of the metal tube. If your leaking pipes are due to longer pipe splits, or even if you just have pipes that have started to bend out of shape, this is the perfect option. These tubes are available in various sizes to match the kind of work required.
When To Call A Plumber
While you may be able to temporarily fix your leaky pipes, there are times when it is certainly worth it to hire a plumber.
If your attempts at fixing your pipes do not go well, it is often not worth trying in vain to continue to employ quick fixes when what may be required is solid plumbing work or replacement by a professional.
If you live in an older home that has galvanized pipes you are going to run into leak a lot more often. These types of pipes can rust from the inside, and it is not always easy to track down problem areas, in which case having a plumber install new plumbing is probably your best course of action, rather than employing these fixes.
Hopefully these quick fixes help you put an end to your leaky problems, getting you back in business quickly and preparing you for any issues in the future. Remember to stay calm, and call a professional if you are in over your head! For help contacting a plumber, hop over to this website.