Plumbing emergencies are incredibly frustrating, but it’s something you’ll have to experience as a homeowner. One day, you’ll encounter a leak or clogged drain that won’t allow you to flush water, or you’re unable to get hot water no matter what you do and how much you need a nice warm bath.
But in these moments, do you panic? Do you wait around until morning comes to find a plumber? Or do you try to fix the problem on your own or find an emergency hot water or plumbing specialist?
Here’s how to prepare in case you have a plumbing emergency.
How to Prepare Beforehand
Of course, it is essential to be prepared before the inevitable comes. Below are a few tips on how you can prepare before any plumbing issues come.
- Know the location of the water valves in your house, especially the main water valve. In case of emergency, you can immediately shut down water flow and avoid flooding your place, which leads to a whole other issue you would deal with.
- You should learn how to turn things on and off, including water heaters.
- Always have the right emergency plumbing kit. This would include having a large bucket in your home not just to hold the tools but also catch the leaks, then plungers for clogs, a variety of wrenches, slip joint pliers, multi-bit screwdriver, Allen keys, duct tape, and sealing tape or a sealant, and some heavy-duty rags.
- Take time to know the most common plumbing issues and the first-aid remedies that you can do. There are tons of articles and videos online to help even the most common house owner.
- Have your plumber’s number at the ready. It’s best to choose an emergency plumber that can provide emergency hot water repairs and more.
What to Do During Plumbing Emergencies
Preparing for a plumbing issue is different from when there’s actually a problem you need to troubleshoot. So, in case of a plumbing emergency, what should you do?
First of all, do not panic. Panicking could cost you moments that would otherwise help in the situation.
For example, your pipe suddenly burst, and there’s water all over. If you panic, you might end up losing a few good seconds that would have allowed you to turn off the main water valve. Even a few seconds or minutes could make a change and would prevent your entire place from flooding more and getting water damage.
Next, be sure you turn off the water–either isolate the shutdown with the right valve or turn off a faucet or even the entire water system if you’re not sure of the source of the problem.
If the problem is simple, perhaps a clogged drain or toilet, you can use a plunger to try and unblock it. Or, if you have issues with your water heater, check and make sure it’s indeed heating water or that there’s water in the tank (if you’re using a tank-based water heater). This is the part where you need to put all your learning into action.
When to Call a Professional
Although you may actually do some DIY first-aid repairs, be sure you always call a professional. Some people think their skills are enough to fend off any more plumbing issues, but any unfixed problem would only worsen.
Moreover, you should just avoid doing anything if you are completely unaware of what you should do. It is indeed good to have some knowledge and apply some first-aid, but if you think you’re doing badly, abandon the work and call a professional immediately, which is also why it’s best to hire a plumber that is available 24/7.