Leaking pipes are one of the most frustrating things you can deal with as a homeowner. From the spraying or dripping water to the initial panic you feel when you see water inside the house, it can be a lot to take in. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to mitigate the threat of a leaky pipe until a plumber is able to repair it properly.
You won’t be able to effectively problem-solve if you are stressed, so be sure to take a deep breath and remain calm. The next step is to identify the shut-off valve for the leaky pipe. For a fixture like a sink or a toilet, the shut-off valve will likely be located directly behind the fixture. For other types of pipes, you may have to go as far as shutting off the main water line. Once you stop the flow of water, you will have a chance to carefully check the pipes surround the leak and locate exactly where it is.
Locate the leak and determine if it is a pinhole leak or a pipe split. Depending on the type and severity of the leak it will warrant different temporary repairs. The repairs discussed below are simply meant to restore the use of water to the affected area. They are not intended to be left longer than a couple of days, and you should contact a plumber right away after you have discovered a leak.
1) If the leak is a pinhole then take a sharpened pencil and place the pointed end in the hole. From there break the pencil off so the tip is still in the hole, then wrap the entire area in black electrical tape. For good measure smear some plumbers epoxy putty over the electrical tape and allow it to set for whatever time is specified in the packaging. Afterward, you should be able to turn the water back on until a plumber can come and do the repair properly.
2) If the leak is coming from a larger pinhole or pipe split then you can take a piece of rubber or a short length of garden hose and wrap it around the affected area. From there take two clamps and tighten them down on either side of the piece of rubber. If you don’t feel as if this is secure enough, you can always wrap the area in electrical tape for good measure.
If you have the experience and feel comfortable doing a permanent plumbing repair on the leaky pipe yourself then that will be the most cost-effective option. On the other hand, if you have followed our tips above and performed a temporary repair but are unsure where to go from there, it may be time to call a professional plumber to have the repair done properly. A plumber will determine where the issue is stemming from and likely replace the entire length of pipe that the leak occurred in.
Plumbing repairs can be intimidating but if you find yourself in an emergency situation it’s important to have a few temporary repairs you can quickly perform. If you feel out of your depth or have no idea what to do call our team at Jolly Plumbing right away. We are available 24/7 to serve you and get your life back to normal as quickly as possible.