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Most houses have integrated complicated plumbing systems such as waste disposals, boilers and even garden features. Therefore, burst pipes can have dramatic and devastating effects. The potential water loss from burst pipes in your house can be as much 2 full baths an hour. They are very common and can affect homes or even the public water system. A burst pipe on the main system can leave people without water for daysIt is not only the cost of water that is being wasted or the loss of the water while it is fixed, but the repair of the pipe or even the total amount and cost of the damage water can do to propertywalls, furniture.

Burst pipes can be caused by several factors, such as pipe failure due to age, misuse or damage; still, freezing conditions and unprotected piping are the main causes. Ice expanding in place isn’t the cause for burst of freezing pipes. Instead, it has to do with pressure inside the pipes. The watermolecules expand as they freeze; therefore they take up more space than when the molecules are in their liquid form. Ice pushes water toward the closed faucet as it expands. As a consequence, an immense amount of water pressure is built between the ice blockage and the faucet. This puts pressure on the pipe from the inside and something has to give. Under the pressure, sooner or later the pipe ruptures at a spot where there’s little or no ice or at the weaker joints.

The most vulnerable pipes are those located in unheated interior areas, including basements, attics and crawl spaces; and of course those outside of building insulation. To prevent them from bursting, heating or insulating them with fiberglass or foam sleeves can help. Also letting the water run will help prevent the water pressure from building to dangerous levels. The pipe areas upstream of the ice clog where the water isn’t blocked, and can always retreat back to its source, aren’t typically in danger of bursting because the pressure isn’t great enough,

The damage caused can be devastating as quite a lot of the piping in a home is hidden in flooring, roof spaces or walls. It can be some time before a pipe bursts in the ceiling or floor is noticed and all too often the first you know is when the water flows in a torrent or the bulge appears. Look for damp patches on walls, ceilings and floors. Loss of water pressure, unusual noises in the system and even electrical faults all can point to Burst Pipes

Prevention of Burst Pipes

A little preventative cost can save much more in the long run since the cost of a burst pipe can be thousands. So here are some things that will make significant savings in the damage and the resulting bill:

• Locate or acquire a stop valve; especially as soon as you suspect a leak or burst. Make sure you know where your stop valve is and how to operate it.
• Confirm that any piping and outside taps are insulated, this includes drain pipes for heating or overflow pipes. To do this you can use insulating lagging or foam; make sure you do not leave any joints, bends or taps exposed. Fitted covers are available for outside taps.
• Lag with good quality pipe lagging any piping that are in unheated areas such as lofts, basements and garages.
• Pipes to garages or sheds or any pipes hidden in the ground outside, need to be buried deep enough and/or lagged.
• Insulate your cold water tank.
• To keep the system warm enough and the water flowing, leave your heating on at least 12 degrees centigrade at all times throughout cold spells.
• Many burst pipes happen because of leaks, therefore fix any dripping taps or existing leaks before the cold spell.
• Have your Central Heating System serviced regularly.
• To reduce the risk of a burst pipe. leave the loft hatch open, particularly in the cold spell. This will allow the warm air to circulate around the loft space and warm any pipes in that space
• If your home will be unoccupied for any space of time, turn off the stopcock, drain any water from the system and close the taps again.

If you cannot ensure any of these processes yourself or if you have any doubt, then make sure you get in touch with a good emergency plumber who will carry out these jobs and advice you further.

What to do if you have a burst pipe

The difference between an inconvenience or a total disaster may perhaps lay in what you do when you discover a burst pipe. Surely, someone who has never made an arrangement of plumbingwould not cut a wall and open it for exposing the pipes, because it is likely to cause further damagethan it has already been done. Therefore, this explanation refers only to the situation where there is a leak in a pipe that is in sight:

The first step is to cut the water supply in the house and to open the tap until the pipe is completely empty. Once done so, carefully dry the damaged area and clean it very well, because otherwise, the products that you will use will not have the necessary adhesion. In the hardware store ask foradhesive designed for such purposes. It comes with a very clear explanation, which must be followed. In many cases these products come in two components to mix. In that case you have to knead for a while until completely uniform mass is formed. Cover the damaged area of ​​ pipecarefully and then let it dry at least half an hour. After that, reconnect the water and done.

If there is a burst pipe where you can’t follow this procedure, then isolate the water from the stop valve. Close the stop valve fully and open the taps in the home to remove the water from the system, the quicker the water is removed the less damage that can be caused.

Move any furniture and belongings from the affected area and do not use the electrical devices, keep away from light switches and sockets if water is leaking it easily can be within the electrical circuit. Then call an emergency plumber who can isolate the burst pipes, uncover the cause and try and get you back online.

Call the local water authority immediately and keep well away if the burst pipes are not in the home but the street because the water pressure in the street can be exceptional and very dangerous.