Is there a temporary fix for burst pipes?

Tai Irwin
5 Jan 2016

BY Tai Irwin / 0 Comments

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Having a burst water pipe is one of the worst plumbing emergencies you’ll have to deal with. Depending on where the burst or leak occurs it could go unnoticed for some time, resulting in severe damage to your home and danger to your family. As North Shore plumbers, we’ve been called out to deal with our fair share of burst water pipes, and we know how stressful this situation can be.

While only a professional plumber can fix a burst pipe, we know that over the holiday season it’ is not always easy to get an emergency plumber to your home immediately. Luckily, there are a few simple things you can do to temporarily fix the burst pipe and minimise the damage before we get there to help you.



 

Signs that you might have a burst water pipe:

It’s important to know how to spot the early signs of a burst pipe. Early detection can make a big difference in the severity of the problem. Depending on where the burst pipe or leak is occurring, the signs can vary. Watch out for these symptoms:

  • Keep an eye out for any damp patches on your walls or ceiling, which could be an indication of a burst pipe behind the surface. Take particular notice of any areas where the wallpaper is peeling, or the paint is beginning to bubble. A bulge in your ceiling is also a sign that there could be water leaking.
  • Listen out for the sound of water spraying or dripping – if you have a major burst pipe inside a wall or underground, you should be able to hear it.
  • Water dripping from the ceiling can be a dead giveaway, but you should also take note of any strange pools of water you find on the floor as this could mean a pipe under the floor is leaking or has burst. Check out the bathroom and kitchen for puddles on the floor, particularly on the floor near the bath, shower or sink.


So, is there a temporarily fix for burst pipes?

As soon as you discover a burst water pipe, give our team of Sydney plumbers a call and we’ll be with you in a jiffy. In the meantime, here are some steps you can take to stop the water leaking, temporarily fix the burst water pipe and keep the damage to a minimum.

  • First of all, be safe. Take care when entering any rooms if there’s been leaking in the house for awhile. Be wary of any ceilings that appear to be bulging. They may be holding a lot of water, and could cave at any moment.
  • If the leaking water is near any electrical appliances, or is behind a wall or in the ceiling, switch off your electrical mains supply. Water and electricity are a deadly combination. If the leak is anywhere near the mains switch, stay well away from it and call an emergency electrician immediately.
  • If there’ is an obvious spot where water is leaking or dripping from the ceiling, use a bucket to catch the water if you can. This can help prevent water damage to your floors.
  • Temporarily fix the burst water pipe by shutting off the main water supply. Find the main stopcock, which is usually under the kitchen sink or at the point where the main water service pipe connects to your house, and turn it off.
  • Once the water supply is turned off, drain the pipes by turning on all your cold taps and flushing your toilets. If you can clear all the water from your pipes, the leak should stop too.
  • Switch off any water heating systems, and turn on all the hot water taps to help drain the water from your system.

 

If you think you might have a burst water pipe in your home, it pays to get an emergency plumber on the scene as quick as you can. If the problem is not addressed quickly you could end up with serious long-term structural and electrical damage to your home. Follow the steps above to detect and temporarily fix a burst water pipe, and give our 24hr emergency response team a call ASAP.