4 Reasons Why Pipes Burst
Have you ever had a burst pipe in your home? It’s a nightmare! How do you know when your home or office water pipe is about to burst?
The Risk Of Burst Pipe In Toronto and York Region
Every home in York Region as well as in Toronto and the surrounding cities is built with an intricate labyrinth of pipes, flowing water to all the different parts of your home. In most homes, the pipes will run smoothly and keep a steady flow throughout their lifespan. However, in Canada in particular, there is always a risk of burst pipes in a home due to a number of reasons.
Your pipes are strong enough to stay solid throughout their duration, but often times too much stress will cause the pipes to break open, causing major water leakage and damage to your property. Generally, there are four major reasons why a pipe would burst – and in Canada, a known concern for homeowners to look out for come wintertime.
Like it or not, the weather in Canada is extremely cold and when the weather doesn’t cooperate with your plumbing system, it can sometimes lead to disastrous results. Your plumbing pipes need to be treated and maintained correctly in order for them to run smoothly during the winterizing your home.
How a Frozen Pipe Bursts | Ask This Old House
How can weather cause a pipe to burst?
Generally, the rule of thumb is that when it’s cold, it contracts and when it’s warm, it expands. Not so with frozen pipes, as the ice buildup causes increased pressure inside your pipes, causing it to literally burst out of the pipe.
All that added pressure can sometimes cause the pipes to explode as it cannot contain the ice buildup in your plumbing system. Oftentimes, the pressure will build and burst right out of the pipe wall or a weak joint in the plumbing system.
How Can I prevent pipe bursts at home?
As a preventative measure, it’s recommended to turn on your faucets slightly to allow a slow stream of water to drip in your sink. This will allow a slow, steady stream to escape the ice formation and keep it from expanding too much to the point of explosion. Another way to prevent water and ice pressure buildup is to insulate the exposed water supply pipes with a foam pipe sleeve.
Another added measure would be to not allow the temperature in the home to dip below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping your cabinet doors open beneath your sink area will also allow warmer air to flow and circulate your pipes and cause them not to freeze. Contact a plumber near you to ensure your home is properly winterized and ready for when the onslaught of the winter months comes.
Issues With Water Pressure
In order for your pipes to function properly, it’s always recommended to maintain normal water pressure for the water supply pipes in your home. As the pressure increases in your home, the excess flow can cause the pipes to burst on fixtures like a faucet or toilets. The more pressure your pipes are handling, the harder it is for your piping system to contain and sometimes cause an explosion. If there is any suspicion as far as your water pressure is concerned, you can add a pressure gauge to a sink spout and turn on your faucet.
The water pressure will activate a needle inside the gauge and display the pressure in PSI, or pounds per square inch. A normal water pressure amount should be in the 30-50 PSI range and should never exceed 60 PSI. When you’re able to gauge your PSI correctly, it will help avoid damage to your pipes and all plumber fixtures. If you aren’t exactly sure how to gauge your water pressure, contact your plumber to properly install the pressure valve and keep it adjusted to a safe level.
Water Movement / Water Hammer
Often times one will hear clanging noises in their home’s pipes, due to improper water movement in the plumbing system. If water pipes are loose, the water can move inside the walls when the water is suddenly turned on or off.
Due to the improper water flowage in the pipes moving back and forth can gradually cause the pipes to weaken until one of the pipes might fail and allow more pressurized water to escape the pipe. The resulting burst pipe can cause serious water build-up and eventually unfortunate catastrophic damage throughout your home.
Corrosion In Your Pipes
While pipes are meant to last a long time and should provide years and decades of reliable serviceable time, often pipes will age and start to build corrosion. More often than not, the corrosion is due to a slow build-up that will cause the pipe to fail. At first, it might seem that the issue is minor and is only caused by a pH imbalance of the water in the pipe but over time will eventually take its toll on your home’s pipes. What’s pH imbalance?
How does corrosion happen in pipes?
As mentioned in other posts about the benefits of Flow-Tech water systems, the pipes can fill up with galvanized iron and minerals and cause your pipes to have hard water. The hard water can sometimes wear down your piping system and narrow the diameter of the pipe causing water to barely flow through. Your pipes will then slowly corrode away and not only cause the water in the pipes to be unsafe but will cause the pipes to burst and cause damage. Keeping an eye on your pipes is of utmost importance and they need to have maintenance work frequently in order for your home’s water to flow properly.
What To Do When A Pipe Bursts?
When you experience a burst pipe in your home, its best to have it assessed by a licensed plumbing professional. They will be able to tell you the cause of the burst and in their findings, give alternate ways to keep it from bursting in the future.
Preventative measures for burst pipes should be in place in your home at all times and your friendly local plumbers at Preferred Plumbing Solutions are always here to help! For any home plumbing needs, contact Preferred Plumbing Solutions. See a complete list of our plumbing services in Toronto.
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