First Things to Do When a Pipe Bursts

Yikes! It happened! A pipe burst open in your home… and now you’re in hyper-drive “damage control” mode.

The first thing you need to do is focus on mitigating any lasting issues by taking the following steps:

  1. Turn off the water supply either to the pipe (if it’s in an isolated area, such as a p-trap under the bathroom sink) or the whole house. (Our advice is to know where the shut-off valve is before this happens, so take a moment today and look for it if you’re not sure.)
  2. If water has leaked around electric cords, adapters, outlets, etc., shut off the electricity to the affected section of the house by shutting off the flow of electrical power at the breaker. DO NOT TRY TO UNPLUG ITEMS BEFORE THE ELECTRICITY IS SHUT OFF! This is critical, because you could incur serious, even fatal, injuries.
  3. After shutting off the water supply, begin to clean up any water that has amassed on the floor, under the sink, etc. Use towels, a Shop-Vac® or whatever you have on hand.
  4. In conjunction with step #3, contact a professional immediately. (Our suggestion is to have your preferred maintenance provider programmed into your phone. You never know when an emergency will strike!) If you’re in the central Pennsylvania area (e.g., Camp Hill, Harrisburg, Carlisle, Hershey, Linglestown, New Cumberland, Mechanicsburg), please call Pronto Plumbing and we’ll get someone out to you fast.
  5. Don’t try to fix the pipe yourself unless you know what you’re doing. However, if you feel it’s a smart idea, do wrap the pipe with an absorbent material to minimize additional leaking.

Remember – the actions you take at the immediate sign of a pipe bursting can make all the long-term difference in the world!

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