What To Do If a Pipe Bursts

With winter now in full swing, the threat of frozen and burst pipes is now upon us. Water expands at a remarkable rate of 9% when it freezes, making it a threat to burst through even the toughest of pipes. While nobody ever wants to deal with a burst pipe, there is no need to panic if it happens. If you’re not sure what to do if a pipe bursts, here are a few helpful tips.

Shut off the water

This step should be fairly intuitive. Although the water that bursts your pipe may be frozen, behind the frozen water is liquid water, and you don’t want it spraying all over the place. So, once you’ve noticed a burst pipe, immediately turn off your water shut-off valve to prevent further damage. 

It’s also a good idea to turn off the electricity. Find the electrical panel and turn the electricity off until the water is taken care of.

Turn on a faucet 

This may sound counterintuitive from the step above, but you’ll really want to open a faucet once you’ve noticed a burst pipe. Getting some water going will relieve the water pressure throughout any other pipes in your home. 

Get rid of the excess water

After you’ve completed the steps above, you’ll want to grab a mop, a bunch of paper towels, or possibly a shop vacuum if you have one. Cleaning up the water right away is important for several reasons. For one, you’ll reduce the damage to the carpet or wood floors because the water will not soak in too deeply. Second, sitting water and moisture create mold, which creates a whole new set of issues. 

Similarly, you may also want to crank up the heat in your house. While mopping and cleaning remove most of the water, some moisture will still get left behind. If your house is warm enough, the water will evaporate, and you won’t have to worry about mold. 

Patch the leak temporarily

Next up, you’ll want to patch the leak if you feel comfortable doing so. This will involve a clamp and electrical or duct tape if the hole is small. Tape around the hole and place a clamp around it. This is only a temporary solution but can keep water from leaking until you can get a plumber out.

Give us a call

If you have a pipe burst, call in a plumber. Many people try to fix their own pipes. But if your pipe bursts and you’re not sure what to do, it’s best to call a professional. It’s always better to fix a pipe properly right from the start. In the long run, it will save you money. A poor patch job can lead to more leaking and plumbing disasters down the road.  

Get in touch with Sunrise Heating and Plumbing a call at (616) 293-9326. We can help you with any plumbing issues, including a burst pipe or other plumbing emergencies.