Pipes are a common point of failure in homes and buildings. A pipe can burst for various reasons, from years of misuse or neglect to an accidental puncture from construction equipment. Whatever the cause, when a pipe bursts, it can cause water damage and even lead to mold infestation and structural collapse.
Luckily for you, you can take steps to deal with a burst pipe in case such an incident ever happens. Here are the steps you should take before the pipe bursts.
Turn Off Your Water
To prevent further property damage, turn off the main water valve for your property. If a separate valve controls every pipe in your home, you’ll have to turn each one off to ensure that no water will gush out inadvertently and do further harm to your property.
Disconnect Your Electrical Panel
To prevent electrical failures, it is also advisable to turn off your electrical panel. If you want to be double sure, remove the fuse or turn off the circuit breaker. If you’re unsure how to do it, ask someone who knows about electricity to help you. It’s best not to take things into your own hands and make mistakes that could cost you even more money.
Turn on a Sink Faucet
After turning off your water supply and disconnecting your electrical panel, it’s best to turn on a faucet. Why? This way, the water pressure inside your pipes will decrease, which will make it easier for you to identify which pipe is leaking and to drain out the remaining water in the burst pipe.
Call in a Professional Plumber
While you may be tempted to do the job yourself, it’s best to call a professional plumber in case the pipe is too complicated for you to fix. You also don’t have the necessary equipment that a plumber has. A professional will not only be able to fix the pipeline for you, but they can also help you prevent future damage. This can help save your home from further damage.
Document It for an Insurance Claim
The best thing to do right after calling in a professional plumber is to document everything that happened. This can help an insurance company reimburse you for damage to your property. The best way to do it is to take pictures and video recordings of the whole process and send this to your insurance company.
Clean up the Water
To avoid further damage, you need to clean up the water that is left on the floor. This is extremely important so that you can prevent mold infestation later on. Wiping off the floor and walls with a disinfectant will also help prevent further damage.
Mold and mildew can develop rapidly in your home or property after a pipe burst. This is because of the moisture present, which can be the perfect breeding ground for mold. So to prevent further damage, you have to get rid of it. Molds can cause indoor air pollution by releasing toxic gases into the air. Aside from it being hard to remove, mold can also be costly to remove. To prevent further damage, you need to take action right away.
Let Warm Air In
If pipes burst due to freezing temperatures, it is best to let warm air in your home so the temperature will return to normal. Keep your doors and windows open while waiting for them to thaw. This way, the warm air can come in and circulate around the pipes.
Call Your Insurance Company
Once you have cleaned up the mess, you may want to call your insurance company. There is a possibility that there will be some damage to your property due to this incident. This includes replacing drywall and other home appliances, repairing broken pipes, etc. You should call your home insurance company or property insurance company so they can assess the damages brought about by this incident.
Preventing a Burst Pipe
As stated above, you can take measures to deal with a burst pipe. But it would help if you didn’t wait to implement these measures. Taking these steps will prevent you from having to deal with a burst pipe and will also help minimize future damage to your property.
Insulating Your Pipes
Pipes that aren’t insulated run the risk of bursting in cold weather. Some insurance companies may require you to insulate your pipes or install a heat tracing system to prevent damage. There’s also a possibility that insulation could be covered by your home insurance company in case something like this happens. To find out, call them first and ask about it.
Repairing or Replacing Old or Weak Pipes
If you don’t know how to tell if your pipes are old or weak, a professional plumber will be able to assess them for you and tell you if they need to be repaired or replaced. It will help if you replaced any leaking pipes as soon as possible. This way, you avoid a burst pipe from happening altogether. You might have to pay for these fixes upfront, but in the long run, replacing the pipes will prevent further damage and save you even more money.
Keeping an Eye Out for Water Leaks
One of the best ways to prevent pipes from bursting is to keep an eye out for leaks. A leaking pipe can lead to a burst pipe, which can cause significant damage to your property. So make sure that you know where your pipes are so you can repair them immediately if necessary. This way, you won’t have any problems in the future.
Locating Your Main Shut Off Valve
Once you have checked your pipes, you should make sure that you know where your main shut-off valve is. You don’t want to spend time trying in vain to find it when a pipe bursts. Sometimes, a water pipe can burst in the middle of the night, so it’s best to be prepared and know where it is before an emergency strikes.
Checking Your Water Pressure
Another thing to do is to check your water pressure from time to time. This can help you determine whether or not your pipes are weak. So if the pressure seems to be a little low, then it’s best to call your plumber and have them check things out.
Letting Your Faucets Trickle during Cold Nights
When it is cold, it’s important to ensure a continuous water flow through the faucets and around the pipes. This way, they won’t freeze and burst. So if it happens to be during the winter, leave your faucets on a slow flow during cold nights when temperatures are low.
You can prevent these incidents by ensuring regular maintenance for your pipes, insulating them, and keeping an eye out for leaks. By following these tips, you can avoid a burst pipe. At Environmental Heating & Air Solutions here in Roseville, CA, we have plenty of experience installing and maintaining pipes, so you know you can count on us.
In conclusion, there are certain steps you can take to help prevent a burst pipe from happening. By taking these measures, you’re more likely to avoid an incident and save yourself a lot of money. We offer cooling, heating, air quality, and plumbing services. If you need help in figuring out what’s going on with your pipes, contact Environmental Heating & Air Solutions today. We’ll be happy to assist you!