How To Stop A Leak In A Cracked Plumbing Pipe

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016

A cracked plumbing pipe can easily ruin your day. You should fix a leaking pipe as quickly as possible to minimize the potential for water damage to your home. There are some things you can do to temporarily repair a cracked plumbing pipe as you wait for professional plumbers. Some of these temporary fixes include the use of pipe clamps, epoxy putty, plumbing repair tape, and pipe sleeves.

Pipe clamps

If the cracked plumbing pipe is exposed and you can reach it, a pipe clamp is the best solution for stopping a leak. These clamps can be purchased from a local hardware store, auto store, or plumbing supply company. The clamps are easy to attach and will provide a sturdy seal that will keep the plumbing intact until a professional plumber arrives. The clamps are not a permanent solution, but they are an effective short-term remedy. To use this tool, you simply need to place the clamp and a piece of rubber over the leak and tighten it down. The clamp will create a temporary seal that will stop the leak.

Epoxy putty

Ideal for use on cast iron pipes, epoxy compounds can work wonders on older pipes. In order for the epoxy to work, you must shut the water off to the leaking pipe. Once the water is off and the pipe has emptied, you should dry and sand the damaged portion so the epoxy can stick to the surface. Once you are finished sanding, dry the pipe again to remove any particles.

Apply the epoxy putty to the cracked plumbing pipe and press it around until it creates a flattened surface that conforms. You must do this quickly as epoxy putty typically starts drying within 1-2 minutes. Once in place, you will need to let the putty sit for approximately 1 hour as it cures and hardens. After the putty has hardened, turn the water back on and make sure there are no more leaks in the plumbing pipe.

Plumbing repair tape

Silicone repair tape is effective at sealing small holes and leaks that may occur at pipe joints. To apply this product, simply press it to the pipe. Pressing will meld the tape to the pipe and stop the leak until a plumber can arrive. Typically, this seal will hold for a couple of days, which gives your plumbers time to schedule an appointment to apply a more permanent solution. Because it is inexpensive and will last a long time in storage, plumbing repair tape is something every homeowner should keep on hand.

Pipe wraps and patches

Pipe wraps or patches are usually used on pipes up to 6 inches in diameter. Simply turn the water off, sand the surface, and wrap the pipe wrap or patch around the cracked area. Allow the material to set for the next 30 minutes as it cures, then slowly turn the water back on and inspect for leaks. An effective short-term solution, pipe wraps and patches are also products that should be within a home’s emergency repair kit.

Plumbing repair sleeves

Joints and pinhole leaks are easy to fix with plumbing repair sleeves. Similar to clamps, repair sleeves provide a strong repair that will hold until a professional plumber can inspect the problem. Repair sleeves are placed on the pipe after the water has been shut off and are clamped into place.

Keep in mind that the above plumbing solutions are only temporary. These solutions do not fix a cracked plumbing pipe, but stop leaks from continuing over the short-term. All leaking pipes require a permanent solution otherwise the crack will spread and the problem will return. For this reason, you should contact professional plumbers immediately after fixing a leak.

If you need to permanently repair a cracked plumbing pipe, contact the experienced plumbers at Allen’s Tri-State Mechanical in Amarillo, Texas. You can call us at (806) 376-8345 or Contact Us by email for more information about our residential and commercial services. You can also stop by our office at 404 S. Hayden Street.