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Plumbing DIY-Can You DIY a Burst Pipe?

January 5th, 2017 by gtowsley Leave a reply »


A burst pipe can put you in the state of dread thinking that it is the worst thing to happen. The nightmare of burst pipe can cause a lot of mess. However, in some cases you can attempt to DIY or fix it yourself. For extensive damage from a burst pipe you may want to leave it to a professional plumber.

During extreme cold weather when temperatures drop below freezing a burst pipe is quite common. When temperatures reach freezing levels, it’s not so much the pipe that gets affected but more so the water inside. As the water freezes and turns to ice, it starts to expand putting pressure on pipes. This phenomenon causes pipe joints to rupture and can damage the pipe wall.

burst pipe 

You don’t want to see your flooring, walls, and personal belongings get wet and damaged because of burst pipe. In the following section of this article, we will see all the methods for burst pipe repairs and how it occurs.

Causes of burst Pipes

Water can expand by 10% when it gets frozen and break the pipe walls. Here are some of the common causes of burst pipes:

  •       Incorrect or inadequate insulation
  •       Compromised insulation
  •       Faulty heating system of the house
  •        Improperly repaired joints
  •        Corrosion on water pipes

What to Do At The First Sign of a Burst Pipe

First things first, don’t panic. If you notice a burst pipe any split-second decisions can cause bigger problems so remain calm.

As a precaution, turn off the main water supply. This will help you alleviate further water damage and allow you to clean up. The scope of burst pipe repairs will depend on location, size and type of pipe rifts.

Fixing the Burst Pipe

When a split happens due to sudden burst, you can use a pipe coupling. A pipe coupling is a short length of pipe with a socket at one or both ends that allows two pipes or tubes to be joined, welded, brazed, or soldered together. Make sure you find the right size of pipe and maintain an inch on both sides of the split. This will help insure the new piece will fit perfectly into the slot. A hacksaw can be used to order remove the damaged piece of pipe. Once you have placed the pipe piece successfully into the slot, tighten it and check if it functions normally when you turn the water back on.  

Fixing a Pinhole Leak

Prior to copper pipes, galvanized steel pipes were used in most buildings. If you are live in an older home there is a good chance you have galvanized steel pipes. The problem with galvanized steel pipes is they are prone to burst pipecorrosion, which can cause bursts.

Turn off the water supply, access the damage, and head to your nearest plumbing hardware shop where you can obtain a stainless-steel pipe repair clamp. Remove all the unwanted rust around the pinhole. Then slip the clamp onto the pipe and seal it. Tighten the clamp with a bolt before turning on the water to insure the leak is properly fixed.

Preventive Care for Burst Pipes

Preventive maintenance can help you avoid the disaster of an unpredictable burst pipe. If you are living in an area prone to freezing temperatures, protect your homes plumbing from the elements. Shield the entry points for your pipes and check the weather stripping on doors and windows for enhanced insulation.

Look for suitable and stronger insulation materials that can protect any exposed pipes as well as your water heater. These preventive measures can help protect your home from the damage caused by a burst pipe.

For best results always call a professional plumber to fix a burst pipe. A burst pipe can be a tedious job, and one that should be done right the first time.


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