4 Steps To Take Right Away When A Pipe Bursts

Posted on: 4 January 2023

Burst pipes are a major concern for many homeowners now that wintry cold weather is in place across the country. Of course, the best way to deal with burst pipes is to avoid them in the first place, but it's not always possible to avoid these costly plumbing failures. Unfortunately, a pipe that bursts is far more than just a plumbing issue — it's also a major flooding disaster.

In many cases, addressing the water damage will be far more costly than repairing the failed pipe. If you want to minimize the potential long-term impacts of one of these events, take these four steps immediately.

Step 1: Control the Water

It's easy to panic when a pipe explodes and forget to take some basic actions to keep the situation under control. While you'll need to contact a plumber quickly, your first step should always be to shut the water off. If there's no nearby valve, immediately turn off the water at your home's main supply valve. You may need to turn the water off at your meter if you have an older home without a shutoff.

After the situation is under control, always check for potential dangers. Don't enter a flooded area if you believe there are nearby flooded outlets or other electrical sources. In these cases, skip the rest of these steps and call for assistance right away.

Step 2: Remove Wet Items

If it's safe to enter the water, your next step should be immediately removing any items you want to save. The longer your items remain in contact with water, the more challenging it will be to salvage them later. Move these items to a safe, dry location, but ensure that you aren't dragging large amounts of water elsewhere in your home.

Step 3: Start Making Calls

Once you've removed any critical items from the water, you can take a deep breath and make a few calls. While you'll want to call a plumber to schedule a repair for your pipe, your second call should be to a water damage restoration company. Any substantial flooding can damage your home, and it's crucial to bring in experts as soon as possible to help mitigate this damage.

Note that even small amounts of water can be a problem. While a small spray from a pipe probably doesn't require professional help, any amount of standing water is likely serious enough to merit a call.

Step 4: Perform Basic Cleanup

You can start performing some basic cleanup now that help is on the way. Drain or remove whatever water you can, and use fans or dehumidifiers to remove moisture from the area. While these methods won't be as effective as the tools used by a water damage restoration team, they can let you get a head start on minimizing further damage to your home.