A burst pipe is one of the more frightening plumbing emergencies you might have to deal with. When a pipe burst open, water gushes out freely and damages your home. If you happen to be gone for several hours or even days at the time, the water damage could be extensive and you might face a huge water bill too. Here are things that can cause a pipe to burst and how to handle this plumbing emergency.
Reasons Your Plumbing Pipes May Burst
A common reason for a burst pipe is when the outdoor temperature is bitterly cold and the water in the pipe freezes, expands, and cracks a pipe open. However, winter isn't the only season you could experience a burst pipe. A pipe can burst in any kind of weather if it is weak due to corrosion. Old pipes gradually wear out and get rusty. Rust eats holes in the metal pipe and the pressure of the water can burst the pipe open. Problems in pipe joints can also lead to massive leaks if a gap develops in a joint and the water pressure blows the pipe apart.
How To Handle A Burst Pipe Emergency
The first step is to turn your water off at the water main so you can stop the flow of water. Then, call an emergency plumber at a company like Micks Plumbing and ask them to repair the pipe. The damaged area may need to be cut out and replaced with a new length of pipe that's fitted or soldered in place. In the case of old, rusty pipes, it could be necessary to replace all the pipes in your home to prevent future plumbing disasters. In addition to calling an emergency plumber, you may also need to call a water restoration company to dry out your house since the longer your house stays wet, the more damage the water can cause.
If the burst pipe caused your water bill to be exceptionally high, you may want to call your water office and negotiate a payment plan to pay off the excess. Your city may have a policy in place for dealing with high bills due to a water leak.
Ways To Prevent Burst Pipes
If you've had issues with pipes freezing in the past or you're just worried about exceptionally cold temperatures harming your plumbing, talk to a plumber about what you can do. Wrapping exposed pipes in insulation may help. You may also want to leave the faucets dripping to relieve pressure on the lines and stop water from freezing in the pipe. Also, if you'll be gone during cold weather, keep the heat on in your home so it doesn't get so cold inside that indoor pipes freeze.
When it comes to dangers of corroded pipes, you can hire a plumber to check your plumbing if you know your pipes are old. By repiping your home if it's necessary, you'll reduce the risk of a pipe leak or a burst pipe emergency.