It’s everyone’s nightmare – a sudden, uncontrollable burst of water. Like every other emergency, the first step is always the same: don’t panic! Next, call an emergency plumbing service as soon as possible. Even if your plumber can come right away, there’s no reason to sit around and wait. Instead, get a plan together and figure out what to do until they get there.
Turn Off the Water
The first thing to do with any plumbing emergency is to turn the main water valve off. If you don’t know where the main water valve is, you need to shut off the water at the valve closest to the leak. Once the leak isn’t getting worse, you may be able to spend some extra time going down to the basement or utility area to look for the main valve. If you’re positive you don’t know what to look for, leave that one valve shut off and move on.
Drain the Lines
Draining the water lines is helpful if you’re dealing with a burst pipe, a frozen pipe, or a clogged drain. Emptying the lines is also necessary for an emergency drain cleaning. Once you’ve shut off the main valve, open all the taps on the lower floors and let the water run until nothing comes out. That’s it! Just remember to close the taps before you start the water up again.
Check the Electronics
Water and electricity don’t mix. Once you’re sure the water flow has stopped, the next step is to get anything electrical out of the way. Cords, outlets, and personal devices need to be checked and, if possible, moved. If any large appliances got wet, you should have them checked by an electrician before using them again. If the damage is severe enough, you may need to turn off the power. In the event of this level of emergency, plan to call for generator services to get you up and running again. If the leak was in the basement and any water got into the fuse box or circuit breaker, it could take over 24 hours to get your life back to normal.
The task people forget is one of the most important: taking pictures! It’s not for posterity, but your insurance company will want them. Even if there isn’t any long-term damage to report, the insurance company might cover the cost of generator services and the plumber.
Mop It Up
The last step is to start the clean-up process. Getting the water out of there will help cut down on issues like mold and mildew, and it’ll make you feel better. You can get a ton done with towels and a mop, but if you have a wet-dry vac, that will help you get it done faster. Once the puddles are gone, plug in all the fans you’ve got. The moving air will help dry it out. Plus, your plumber will appreciate keeping their shoes dry!
Any plumbing emergency is a stressful experience. But knowing what to do and who to call always helps. Our team knows how trying it is to have water pouring into your home. If you have a plumbing problem or need emergency drain cleaning, contact us at (610) 496-5700.