Advice for Handling a Burst Pipe

Pipes burst for all sorts of reasons. Perhaps you have faced a cold snap and the resulting sub-zero temperatures have made ice form inside the pipe, causing it to expand. Maybe the water pressure to your home or work premises is too high and the joints in your plumbing system have faced too much strain. There again, you might simply have an old section of pipework which has deteriorated over the years until it has finally allowed water to escape. Whatever the reason for a burst pipe, once you have detected one, you will need to act fast. Otherwise, your home or office could become damaged by excessive amounts of water escaping. Here's your step-by-step guide to what you need to do.

Step One – Turn Off the Water Supply

Most buildings have a series of in-pipe taps which can be turned off to restrict the water flow. There might be one near to your cold water storage tank, for example. By turning off the closest one to the burst section of pipe, you can stop the leak. The main stopcock to your home is usually located in the kitchen, close to where the water supply comes in. In commercial buildings, you may find them outside, perhaps by your water meter.

Step Two – Call an Emergency Plumber

In order to fix the leak so you can turn your water back on, you will need an emergency plumber who can come out. At weekends or at night, look for a nearby 24/7 emergency plumber so that the issue is dealt with promptly. In most cases, the burst section of pipe will be cut away and a new one put in place. Always turn to a professional so you don't worry about further leaks occurring in the future.

Step Three – Notify Your Insurer

It is best to make a claim once you have established how much damage has resulted from the water burst as well as the consequent repair work. That said, you should always notify your insurer of the problem in case they want to make an inspection. Take photos of the affected areas in any case just so you have some documentary proof of the leak.

Step Four – Dry Your Home Out

Sweep out excessive amounts of water using a stiff brush. Allow your home to be aerated as much as possible to help dry out the carpet and floorboards. Hiring some industrial dehumidifiers is a good idea to speed up the process of drying out.