How to respond to plumbing emergencies

How to respond to plumbing emergencies

How to respond to plumbing emergencies

If you’ve never had to deal with a plumbing emergency before, don’t start celebrating just yet. A time will come you’ll need to deal with that water leak or those burst pipes before the plumber can come and save you.

Plumbing emergencies are a surprisingly common occurrence, and it’s important to know how to handle them so you can effectively minimise any damage.

Leaking water can destroy furniture, flooring, roofs, and many other things in the house. Not knowing what to do in such situations could mean you having to deal with damages worth thousands if your emergency plumber even slightly delays.

However, this doesn’t have to be the case. Here are a few things you can do as you wait for your plumber.

1.    Turn Off Your Water Supply

Look for the main valve and shut it off. This will help minimise water damage. The primary water valve is often near the water meter.

If you can’t find it, ask your plumber for some help. They might suggest alternative locations of where it might be. If you can find the main valve, your plan B can be to switch off the valve closest to the water leak.

2.    Identify the Problem

Assessing what’s causing the plumbing emergency can range in difficulty level. The nature of your issue might be obvious, or it might need a professional to assess it.

If the issue is a water leak, you might be able to solve the problem using some old towels or plumber’s tape, creating a temporary solution. You can help reduce the damage until your plumber arrives or until you have a permanent solution.

A gas leak or burst pipes are some of the problems that might prove to be too complex to assess, but it never hurts to try. Don’t allow the complexity of the problem to intimidate you from trying to identify the issue.

3.    Drain the Pipes

Your pipes will still have residual liquid left in them even after you’ve switched off the water supply. Drain the lines, then go outside and turn on all spigots and hoses. That’ll ensure more water cant leak inside the home.

Making sure there’s no water in the system will help make work a bit easier for your emergency plumber.

4.    Check your Electric Appliances

During a severe water leak scenario, water can drain out of your lines and find its way to your electric appliances. Make sure your fuse box is dry, and if you can, switch it off. Do the same with other appliances, like your water heater.

A good way to damage your water heater’s tank is by running it while it's empty. Water and electricity aren’t friends, and meeting each other will lead to more serious issues like explosions and fires.

5.    Check for Damages

Once you’ve done all the above, check for damages. If you know what the problem is or where it has occurred, the information you give your plumber will be very helpful when it comes to solving the problem.

Should your issue be a gas leak in the water heater, ensure you open all your doors and windows. Turn off the main gas line. Never block your doors and windows with towels because this could lead to gas build-up.

6.    Take Photos

It may seem like taking photographs is a complete waste of time in such scenarios, but you want to take pictures or videos to document the issue while it is happening. The plumber themselves and most home insurance providers could use the photos and videos.

After the emergency has been handled, take a few more pictures afterward. Your photos will help you make a case with your home insurance provider. Also, take notes if you can.

7.    Move Your Furniture to Dry Areas

Although you don’t have to worry about your drenched sofa exploding, it’ll cost you a few thousand to replace it. And, what’s true of the sofa is certainly true for other home furniture items, like chairs, tables, bookshelves, beds, etc.

Once wet, most of the household furniture mentioned above can get damaged beyond repair. Move your furniture away from all the standing water.

If this isn’t possible, like some furniture isn’t easily movable, cover that particular furniture up with aluminum foil.

8.    Remove Standing Water

Clean the water before your emergency plumber. Don’t wait for their arrival to start doing that. Open your doors and windows, turn on some fans and use a towel or mop to clean up that standing water.

This standing water can destroy drywall and flooring and even cause mold development. It takes roughly more than 72 hours for mold to change from barely visible into a pungent nuisance.

9.    Call An Emergency Plumber

Many plumbing emergencies will need the services of a professional. If that is the case in your situation, you should contact yours as soon as possible. Do some of the things mentioned above while you wait for their arrival.

Sometimes emergency plumbers might just provide a temporary solution to your water leak or even turn on the water supply as they ponder how to fix the issue. They might even have to leave and come back later to come up with a permanent fix.

Also, find out how much emergency plumbing services will cost you from your plumber. Many plumbers will have to assess the issue before giving you a quote. However, they can give a general estimate of how much you might have to spend.

Once you’ve gotten this information, you can decide who you want to use.

Get Ahead of This

Sudden plumbing emergencies won’t only ruin your day, but they can also destroy property. Even though they’re never expected or welcome, they will happen.

Hopefully, this article has shown you what you can do to help minimise damage before the professionals arrive on the scene. Though, it’s never a good idea to try and solve the situation yourself. Always make sure you get in touch with an emergency plumber.

When you find yourself in such situations, contact us as soon as possible and allow us to help fix your problem.  Our highly trained personnel will do their best to solve the problem in no time at all.



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