How to Recover from a Pipe Burst
Burst pipes can be disastrous. The amount of sheer water damage done within a short time can cause your head to spin! Even the tiniest crack can release countless gallons of water into your home, causing structural damage, destroying possessions, and creating favorable conditions for dangerous molds to grow. Don’t forget the costs of repairing- from water extraction to repairing the pipe to drying the area to constructing a new drywall.
Recovering from the burst
In the event a pipe bursts, there are several things you should do to recover from it. You will probably need a plumber to help fix the situation.
- Remain calm. If you see some water leakage, don’t rush to do anything. Compose yourself first otherwise you’ll cause more damage.
- Close the main water valve. This is absolutely necessary if you know that your water pipe has burst. Doing this is the only sure way to prevent water loss. It is also a good precaution if your pipe is frozen because it will help you prepare for a small crack you are unaware of.
- Try to locate the burst section. This will be a part of the pipe that is noticeably wetter than the rest… And there may be more than one if you have multiple bursts.
- Open the cold water tap to the burst part of the pipe. This allows you to safely drain the water out of the drain especially if the pipe was frozen then the water melts.
- Warm the pipe. A hairdryer is best-unless the pipe has burst and there’s been a flood, in which case you should never operate electrical devices in the area. Start near the closest tap and work your way towards the frozen sections. Never use an open flame to thaw a pipe-it’s a fire hazard and could harm your pipes.
- Heat the pipe. A hairdryer is the best, in that case, you unless there has been a flood. Remember not to operate any electrical types of equipment in a flood area. Don’t use an open flame to thaw the pipe-it can cause fire and damage the pipe.
- Check the pipe for cracks. When you reopen the main water valve you will want to know that you will not cause a flood.
- Resolve the problem. Call a reputable professional plumber to do an assessment of the situation and make recommendations.
Preventing pipe burst
While the plumber will replace the pipe-and should ensure it doesn’t happen again, it is important to reduce the risk of a pipe burst. Knowing the set of procedures you can use to prevent pipe burst and the damages that come with it would do you good. Below are some tips.
- Know where your stopcock. It’s important because, in the event of a pipe burst, you can quickly shut down the water supply. It can greatly save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars in damage repair.
- ensure that all the outside are insulated. For example, all the overflow pipes should be insulated. Also, insulate your cold water tank.
- lag any pipes that are located in an unheated area such as lofts, garages, and basements with good pipe lagging.
- ensure that all the outside pipes are dug deep.
- If you are planning to leave your home for an extended period of time, close the stopcock. Drain the water and then close all taps. Remember to leave your heating on.