Burst pipes can cause a massive disruption to any home or business. Damage to the property, and even increased health risks from the mould growth in the aftermath of the water damage.
It can be a serious and expensive problem that most of us want to avoid. The good news is that simple steps can be taken to reduce the risk of it occurring and to mitigate extensive damage if it does occur. We’ve listed down three helpful tips to help you in reducing the risk of getting a burst pipe in your Ipswich property.
Be careful when digging
If you live in south east Queensland then make sure to call Dial Before You Dig to get infrastructure plans before you undertake in any earthmoving or digging project. The last thing you want to do is go and accidently hit a go and hit a water pipe and cause an unnecessary plumbing emergency.
Perform regular visual inspections of your properties pipes
If you live a high set Queenslander this should be relatively easy to do, look for any signs of corrosion or any leaks. These signs may be an indication that the plumbing is compromised and may burst later down the track.
Also make sure that pipes are secure and not dangling loose as pipes which are not adequately fixed are more susceptible to knocks and bumps, which can cause leakage or rupture.
Reduce water pressure to your property
Some low-lying properties are exposed to greater mains water pressure which places the properties plumbing at greater risk of a burst pipe. If you find that your water pressure is abnormally high above 500kpa or 73psi, then your property could benefit from having a pressure reducing valve, also known as pressure limiting valve installed.
This device reduces the mains water pressure down to a more suitable level for your property. Which will lower the risk of a burst pipe and also help your appliances last longer, and dampen the impact of any water hammer in the property.
How do I know if my homes water pressure is too high?
The easiest way to check your water pressure is to purchase a water pressure gauge at your local hardware store.
You simply screw it onto an outdoor tap and turn the water on. Check the water pressure at several intervals throughout the day as mains water pressure varies depending on overall usage (the more properties in an area using water the lower the pressure in the system will be).
If you find the pressure is above 500kpa you can contact your local plumber to install a pressure reducing valve.
Turn off your water off at the mains valve when you go away.
When you’re away on holidays or on an extended business trip any potential burst water pipe that could occur will go unnoticed for days or even weeks.
When a property is exposed to large volumes of water like this for an extended period of time it’s a recipe for disaster.
Making a habit of turning off the mains water valve will prevent such havoc from occurring should a burst pipe occur while you’re away. This will give you peace of mind knowing there will not be any water issues whilst your enjoying your time away.
Where is my mains water valve?
Your properties mains water valve is normally located on or near your water meter which is typically found in the exterior of your building, near the utility area of the house, or along the perimeter of your home facing the street.
If you’re still lost, you can contact your plumber to help you locate it as some houses or buildings could have a different area where it was installed.
What to do when your pipe has burst
Ok so what happens if a pipe actually does burst? Once you’ve discovered it, turn off your water’s main stop valve then call your emergency plumber ASAP.
If possible, try to remove the excess water from your floor. This is especially important if you have non waterproof floor like timber floorboards, as many houses in Ipswich do. The timber floor might absorb the water, causing the floorboards to expand and deform. Use a squeegee or mob to remove any pooling water.
Finally, begin your documentation by taking pictures and noting if there are damages done to your house. Make sure you have these pieces of evidence ready when you contact your insurance company.
These preventive steps will help in reducing the risk and severity of burst pipe incidents. Always have your emergency plumber’s number handy so you can immediately call for their help in case this happens.
Conducting regular professional maintenance check-ups can also help in fixing possible issues while they are still minor and easy to repair, thereby avoiding incurring widespread damage and greater expense later on down the track.