27 Jun Plumbing Pipe Repair
Plumbing Pipe Repair - a How To Guide
Should you notice water stains, or water accumulating in some particular spot in your home or business, you are likely in need of a plumbing pipe repair of some kind. We’d like to go over several repair methods you may want to try if you find a leaky pipe somewhere in your home or business.
We get calls all the time from all over the Greater Toronto Area – including North York, Markham, Vaughan, Richmond Hill, and all the surrounding areas – about leaky pipes and how to go about fixing them. We are happy to try and help so here is a guide to some plumbing pipe repair methods you might try if you get a leak.
Confirm It’s a Plumbing Pipe Leak First
As professional plumbers here in the Toronto area, we frequently get plumbing leak repair calls that aren’t actually plumbing related. A couple of situations where it might NOT be your plumbing pipe leaking:
Condensation – sometimes, due to temperature and humidity combinations, plumbing pipes or other materials – often metal – will “sweat” and drip. This phenomenon may be misconstrued as a plumbing pipe leak – water accumulating, or staining on the floor, wall or ceiling – but in reality it is condensation of moisture in the air, into dripping water. In this instance, you need to do something about the combination of humidity and temperature in the area around the phantom “leak” – but it’s not a plumbing issue.
Water leaks from other sources – most commonly, this leakage could be from the foundation of your home – the typical basement leak. This is not related to your plumbing at all, but it might look like it, depending on where the water accumulation is. Alternatively, leakage from your roof – skylights, for example, may be misconstrued as a plumbing pipe leak issue.
Sources of Plumbing Pipe Leaks
Your plumbing pipe leak may be a break or crack in the actual piping. On the other hand, very frequently, pipe leak issues occur at junctions – those areas where one section of pipe is connected to another. The coupling nut may be the source of the leak.
Tighten the Coupling Nut to Cure Your Plumbing Pipe Leak
Once you’ve visually inspected your plumbing pipe in the area of the leak, and determined that the source may be the coupling nut, the next step is pretty simple. Try tightening the coupling nut, particularly if it appears loose. CAUTION – do not attempt any type of plumbing repair with the water pressure turned on. Turn off your main water pressure valve first.
All you need is a wrench to tighten the coupling nut, but be careful; don’t over tighten or add additional stress to the piping joint. You may well end up doing more harm than good to the piping.
To test your repair of the coupling nut, turn the water pressure back on – if it’s not leaking or dripping anymore, you’ll see that you’ve made a successful repair. If not, there must be something more to the problem.
Other Plumbing Pipe Leak Issues and Some Repair Techniques
If the source of your plumbing pipe leak is not at a joint, connection or the coupling nut, the issue may be a crack in the plumbing pipe itself. You’ll need to hunt around a bit to track down where the break actually is, but it’s most likely near where water is accumulating or staining. Once you’ve found the break, here are some repair solutions you might try:
Epoxy putty – this material is both pliable and sticky, even to wet or damp surfaces, such as your leaky plumbing pipe. Try to seal around the leak or break area with the putty. Make sure the surface of the piping is clean and as dry as possible – again, you should turn off your water pressure for the best result. Seal the affected area, and turn up the water pressure again – you’ll see if you’ve been successful in pretty short order. Make sure you allow the putty to set and cure according to the manufacturer’s instructions before testing with full water pressure.
Patch and clamp – this type of plumbing pipe repair kit should be readily available at your local plumbing supply store. Follow the enclosed instructions to affect your repair to the damaged plumbing pipe area. Again, test it out with full water pressure after the repair has been completed.
As professional plumbers, we’ve been around long enough to know that do-it-yourself plumbing repairs are not for everyone. If you are in need of assistance, or if your DIY repair attempt has not been successful, please contact us. We are the plumbing pipe repair experts in Toronto and surrounding – North York, Vaughan, Markham, Richmond Hill and area. We can help you with your plumbing pipe repair.