A pipe can burst at any time although it is most common when the temperature drops below freezing or the water has been turned off and gets turned back on.
When pipes freeze the water turns from a liquid to a solid, expanding in the process. Of course, it’s trapped inside a pipe and has limited expansion room. This creates pressure on the pipe which can cause it to burst.
Equally old pipes that have corroded or are damaged can do the same thing. The problem with a burst pipe is that it lets a lot of water into your home fast. It can quickly become flooded giving you a much bigger headache. That’s why you need the number of a reputable emergency plumber Sydney on hand at all times.
If you experience a pipe burst you need to be prepared, here’s what you do:
Shut Off Utilities
You need to get your electricity turned off and close the main water valve. Shutting the valve reduces the amount of water able to come into your house, effectively limiting the damage. Turning off the electricity helps to ensure the water and the electricity don’t meet. The two are not a good combination together and, if you come into contact with them both, you can get a nasty electric shock.
You know your house best and will be able to decide if it’s better to shut the water off first or the electricity. Both are important, do the one closest to you first, then the other.
As soon as the utilities are off start moving items away from the flood area. This will help you to save as many pieces of furniture and sentimental items. If they get wet they’ll likely be damaged beyond repair.
Moving them away and to a higher section of the house can save a lot of hassle, especially if you end up arguing with the insurance company. Check now that you have flood cover.
With your important possessions saved it’s time to take as many pictures as you can. These should show the burst pipe and all the damaged that has been caused. The pictures are useful when you put your insurance claim in.
You should also make a written record of what happened, what you did, and the items that were damaged. It may seem strange doing this straight away but it’s fresh and the damage is in front of you. This will help to ensure the events are fully recorded; making the subsequent claim easier.
Remove The Water
If you have a pup now is the time to turn it on and start pumping water out of your home. If not, then buckets and mops will eliminate the water in a relatively short space of time. You’ll want to remove as much water as possible to help with the drying process.
At this point, you need to speak to your insurance company. They may have specific instructions regarding who you should contact. If not, find a local specialist who can bring in drying equipment. The sooner the damp is removed from your home the less likely it is you’ll develop a mold problem.
Ventilating your home while you wait is a good starting point. Dehumidifiers can also help.
Your emergency plumber can now be called to repair the damaged pipe, allowing you to turn the water back on in your home.
Keep all the invoices as you’ll need them for your insurance company!