In last week’s blog, we looked at how to prepare for your DIY, by making sure you don’t burst a water pipe. This week we look at what to do if the worst has happened and you’ve burst a pipe during DIY. Hopefully you’ve not been waiting a week with a burst pipe for our solution!
Picture the scene. You’ve made your preparations, you’re confident there are no pipes in the wall. You’re about to hang up the family portrait and knock a nail into the wall. Next thing you know, water is pouring out, right at you. What do you do?
1. Turn Off Your Water
This should be common sense, but at this point, with water pouring out, you’re going to want to stop the source as soon as possible. The longer water is flowing, the more damage you’re likely to cause. Hopefully after part 1 you’ve located your water stop tap, and know where you’re headed to shut it off.
2. Turn Off Your Boiler.
If you’ve hit part of your central heating or a hot water pipe, you’re going to know about it quickly. You’re going to want to turn off your boiler as quickly as possible, by shutting off power to it. This is going to prevent a leak which could cause some serious damage to your boiler if the pressure drops. It’s also going to stop hot water pouring out, which is half the battle won.
3. Turn Off Your Electricity.
It’s a well known fact that water and electricity don’t mix. If you have water pouring over your home, protect yourself and your electricals by shutting off the mains. This can generally be down at your fuse box or your electrical panel. This is absolutely crucial, particularly if you can’t stop the burst pipe as if the water reaches an electrical socket, anyone in the house risks a nasty electric shock. In extreme circumstances where the flow of water has built up to the sockets, leave the house immediately and call the fire brigade.
4. Phone Your Insurance Company
If your home has been left badly damaged by the burst pipe, you’re going to want to contact your insurance provider. It’s best to call them before anyone else, or you start cleaning up yourself, as they may want you to take photos of the damage. If you rent, you’ll want to speak to your landlord to discuss the next steps.
5. Call in the Professionals
Whilst in the most serious cases you may need help from the emergency services, thankfully most burst piping is fixable by plumbing engineers, like Hunsbury Heating. We’ll follow all the steps above if you haven’t already and get to work patching up the pipe. We’ll also then test your system to ensure that everything’s up and running again as intended. You may be tempted to sort this yourself, however it’s always best left to a professional, to make sure there’s no additional damage down the line.
Whilst the professionals will do their best to leave you as good as new, there will undoubtedly be some cleanup. If a pipe has burst, chances are your wall will be soaked. In most cases the wall will be fine air drying, however, for more serious water damage, you’ll want to consider getting in touch with a professional drying service. Making sure your walls are completely dry before redecorating is the best way to prevent mould.
After the burst pipe has been repaired and you’ve cleaned up, the only thing that remains is who pays. This will depend on 2 factors – where you were drilling, and your insurance company. In a rented property, your personal liability insurance should pay up, so long as the damage is not deemed gross negligence (for example if you were drilling directly below a tap where pipes often are, you’re unlikely to be covered!). The same applies to home insurance, which should pay out, so long as the case is not deemed gross negligence.
For all your plumbing and gas problems, please call us at Hunsbury Heating on 07919 008441. We specialise in boiler installation, servicing and repair, as well as bathrooms and general plumbing.