Calgary Plumbing: What to do in case of a water pipe burst?
Though we hope that water line burst may never happen at your home, but then you can never predict such incidents and should always have this information handy. It is quite scary but if you are prepared and have an understanding on what can be done immediately, it makes the experience less frightening.
Since the water supply pipe is pressurized, it leads to a sudden gush of water pouring out in event of a burst. There is no indication or warning in this case, unlike the sewer main backup, wherein the water starts to drain only slowly.
It is crucial to understand the most important thing if the water pipe bursts and there is a plumbing emergency – Water needs to be turned off completely from the source. This can be done in either of the ways:
- You will need to turn off the main shutoff valve, which could be located at the front of the house. In case it is a ball valve, the level will have to be turned one quarter in order to turn off the water supply. However, in case of the older gate valve, you will need to move the handle clockwise. An easy way to remember is “Righty tighty – Lefty loosy”.
- You could alternatively turn off the water at the meter. To know where it is located, you will need to recall where the local utility company representative goes to read the meter each month to check on your water consumption. You will require the right tools since this procedure cannot be done easily without the appropriate equipment.
- It is therefore advisable to purchase a meter key from your nearest hardware store and have the peace of mind that you will be able to manage and bring the situation under control at a short notice. Even though you will not be able to repair the plumbing damage and will require professional help in replacing the pipe etc, it will save you quite a lot of clean-up if you act on time and have the right tool handy.
Once the water supply is turned off from the mains, you must also keep these two things in mind:
The gas to the water heater should be turned off. This can be done by either using the gas caulk or adjusting the control unit and setting it on pilot, which will ensure that the water heater doesn’t burst if the tank is partially empty
The hose faucets located outside the house should be opened up, so that the residual water from the water pipes gets drained outside rather than inside.
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