DIY – Emergency Plumbing Solutions
September 20, 2017
An emergency plumbing situation can occur at anytime of any day. Knowing how to fix urgent plumbing problems in advance is the best way to come up with solutions at the time of an emergency. Knowing how to spot potential plumbing problems can also help you determine whether you will be facing an emergency plumbing situation in the near future. Learn how to prepare and temporarily fix your next emergency plumbing crisis until the professionals are called in.
What You Need On Hand:
You never know what emergency plumbing situation you will find yourself in, which is why you must always stay prepared and have these items ready to go in case you spring a leak (or any other plumbing emergency mishap occurs).
- Use a bucket as your ‘emergency plumbing tool holder.’ If you spring a leak mid-project, it will catch the water and help keep your home nice and dry.
- Keep heavy duty paper towels or old towels/rags in your ‘emergency plumbing tool kit’ to clean up whatever your bucket doesn’t catch or water from small leaks.
- Wrenches, wrenches, wrenches – wrenches are an essential tool of any plumber. A pair of medium sized slip joint pliers and an adjustable wrench should cover most jobs. However, it never hurts to have other various sized wrenches ready to go as well.
- A multi-bit screwdriver is the perfect ‘emergency plumbing tool.’ It is versatile and can help reduce the number of tools in your ‘emergency plumbing tool kit.’
- Keep a forced cup plunger and a regular plunger handy. Each plunger has its own specific use and provides extra unclogging power!
- Duct tape and/or leak sealing tape can help out in a plumbing emergency until a permanent fix can be made.
- Wire coat hangers are a household item that every amateur plumber should keep handy.
When it comes to emergency plumbing situations it’s not enough to just have the right tools to take on the job, you have to know a thing or two about how to handle the situation too. These tips will prepare you for your next emergency plumbing crisis.
- If a pipe bursts, turn off the water supply. While you wait for a professional to arrive and remedy the situation, drain the entire system by turning on all the cold water taps in the house and flushing the toilets. Next, turn your water heater off and turn on all the hot water taps and drain them out as well. When there is no more running tap water, the leak will stop.
- Use two wrenches at once, turning in opposite directions. This absorbs the stress from the plumbing when tightening or loosening a plumbing fitting.
- If the water in a clogged toilet keeps rising every time you flush, take a wire coat hanger and bend it into a curved shape and try to remove the blockage inside the toilet bowl. Once you have loosened the blockage, try using a forced cup plunger to fully unclog the toilet. Unclogging a toilet with rising water can be messy job. Be sure to use old towels and rags on the floor to keep the bathroom from getting wet and slippery.
- Use duct tape or pipe sealing tape to pull together a crack in a pipe. The tape will reduce the leak as a temporary solution.
- When unclogging the sink or garbage disposal in the kitchen, make sure to turn off the switch for the disposal before trying to unclog or clean it. First, use a long spoon handle or tongs to clean out the fragments of leftovers. Make sure to never put your hands inside the disposal. Next, use two plungers to unclog the sink/disposal. Using a second plunger to cover the other drain will allow you to get the most force. After cleaning the disposal out and plunging the drain, turn on the hot water, turn the power on again and turn on cold water to check if the clog has been cleaned out.
These tips will help to sustain the damage until a professional plumber can be called in to make the repairs.