Could a burst pipe create a disaster?
If you’re lucky, a burst pipe in your home can be an easy fix. It could be time-consuming, but hopefully just an annoyance you can take care of yourself without any additional damage. However, there are instances where it could be disastrous and cause considerable water damage. To make matters worse, damage from water can result in mold growth, personal property loss, and structural damage to your building. It would be better to hope for small leaks but be prepared for real damage.
Causes of a burst pipe
First things first. There are many reasons for burst pipes, such as:
- Freezing weather
The pipes in your home may burst if you reside in an area where the winters are frigid. Water running through pipes in poorly insulated parts of the house might freeze when the temperatures drop. The pressure inside the pipe rises due to the ice blockage, which prevents water from flowing. That’s the recipe for a disastrous accident.
- Water pressure
Water is a tremendous force, and its pressure is strong enough to split open a standard pipe. Building water pipes often receive a certain amount of water, as specified by the pipe’s manufacturer. A sudden increase in water pressure caused by a failure in municipal supply could also cause damage.
A congested pipe will inevitably burst at some point. Mineral deposits or other materials might build up inside the pipes and clog them. Luckily, this is one of the situations you can prevent. Try to keep an eye on the pipes that are more susceptible to being clogged: the ones that come in contact with foreign objects, or even the ones that are out in the open and might deal with leaves or animals. Try to keep them as clean as possible if you are able to do it on your own. If not, getting professional help to deal with that will save you money by preventing the pipe from bursting.
- Old pipework
The lifespan of pipes is limited, much like any other material. Old pipework made of metal or plastic will collapse under internal and external pressure. Despite routine servicing and maintenance, old pipelines might break. Try to check on these types of pipes with some regularity to be one step ahead of any probable rupture. It will always pay off to be prepared.
Steps to take if you have a burst pipe
It is essential to take immediate action to minimize the damage caused by a burst pipe incident. Here are the first quick steps you can take:
Ensuring everyone is safe comes first because a burst pipe can lead to several hidden dangers. Check for electrical fixtures or equipment that has come into touch with water; if any fixture has come in contact with it, turn off your power at the mains. Do not touch the main switchboard if it has come into contact with water.
2. Shut off the water
Then, find your water meter. In residences, it is typically located outside a box, attached to a wall, or underneath the kitchen sink. If your meter is still running even if no appliances are in use and the taps are turned off, you likely have a busted water pipe. Older round valves require numerous clockwise turns of the handle to turn off the water. If your home has a quarter-turn ball valve, turn it from “on” to “off.”
3. Call a plumber
The aftermath of a burst pipe can range from a few damp rugs or other possessions, to severe damage to your home, which results in structural instability, the development of mold problems, and even damage to your electrical system. Additionally, not acting fast enough after a pipe burst could drastically raise the cost of repair. Calling a plumber will be essential in determining which of these first two scenarios will you have on your hands. Lucky for you, our staff of skilled and certified plumbers is available to handle your home’s urgent plumbing issues.
4. Empty the pipes
Empty the pipes of any remaining water after turning off the main water valve and calling the plumber. This includes flushing all toilets and turning off your hot water system. Cleared pipes allow us to immediately assess and address your emergency pipe burst situation.
Contact STL Plumbing Experts for your burst pipe repairs
Various circumstances can cause a pipe to burst in your home. A delay in addressing the situation can cause severe water damage, including structural and interior damage.
At STL Plumbing Experts we are committed to providing residents of Saint Charles and Saint Louis, MO, with plumbing installation, repair, and maintenance solutions. Call us at 636-223-5068 or click here to also schedule your appointment online. We are here for you, no matter how easy or hard the situation is. We’ll take care of it and have your home back to normal in no time.