Burst pipes and large leaks are truly the nightmare scenario for any homeowner. It can be incredibly costly to fix both the pipes themselves and the damage the water caused to the rest of your house. While there is no way to completely prevent burst pipes from happening, there are ways to mitigate the damage afterwards. Here is what you should do when a pipe bursts.
Know the Signs
There are many early warning signs of a potential burst pipe. An ounce of prevention is always worth a pound of cure, and knowing the signs of a burst pipe can help you to take further steps before extensive water damage to your home. Some of these early warning signs include fluctuating water pressure, discolored or rusty water with a strange smell, pipes making unusual noises behind walls, puddles forming under your sinks, and your water bill suddenly spiking. Keeping these signs in mind will make it more likely that you catch a burst pipe early, before it does a large amount of damage.
Turn off Your Water and Drain the Faucets
If you know or suspect a burst pipe or large water leak, the first step is to turn off your water and drain your faucets. Turning off your water will minimize the water damage your home will suffer. Your main water shut-off valve is likely located near your water heater, in a crawl space, or in your basement. Once the water has been shut off, you should open your faucets and flush all the toilets in the house. This will relieve pressure in your pipe system and stop any existing leaks. If you suspect that the water from the burst pipe has come in contact with any electrical sockets or wires, you should also turn off your electricity at this time.
Locate the Burst Pipe
Your next step should be to figure out where the pipe burst. If it appears to have been leaking for a while, be careful entering rooms and look for bulging ceilings and other warning signs that water damage has already occurred. If you catch the leak early enough, place a bucket underneath to catch dripping water and prevent more water damage from occurring.
Call the Professionals
As soon as possible, call in the professionals. A professional plumber will be able to fix or replace your burst pipe, and an electrician will be able to make sure that your plumbing issues haven’t affected the electrical work and do any work that is needed in that direction. If you have suffered water damage to your walls or ceiling, you may have to call in a construction company to make sure that your house is structurally secure and replace the damaged bits. For more information on the sort of professionals who can help with water damage, click here: https://www.fixitrightplumbing.com.au/plumber-melbourne/. Most instances of water damage result in between $1,000 and $4,000 of repairs, which is why the next and final step is so essential.
Document the Damage for Insurance
You should begin taking photos of affected areas of your home immediately and continue to do so every step of the way during cleanup. This will make it so that, when you file your insurance claim, you will be able to claim the maximum amount possible due to accurate recording. It is also advisable to turn your water back on momentarily so that you can take a picture of the full effect of the leak. Once water damage occurs, you typically have a three-day window until microbes spread and mold begins to grow, so it’s important to file a claim as soon as you notice the leak. If you’re unsure what is covered under your insurance, most insurance claims adjusters will be willing to look over your policy for a low or even no fee, ensuring that you will be able to get the most out of your insurance.
Burst pipes will never be a pleasant experience, but it doesn’t have to be a disastrous one. By following these steps, you will be able to ensure that, if one of your pipes does burst, you will be able to get through the situation with minimal water damage and cost to you.
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