This time of year, water damage and restoration companies receive a lot of calls about burst pipes and flooding. Unfortunately, pipes that aren’t properly insulated are at risk of freezing and bursting when temperatures dip low. And when you’re in an area that sees subzero temps, the risk of freezing exists even if your home and pipes are well- insulated.
What Causes Pipes to Burst?
Though freezing temperatures are the main culprit, the science behind burst pipes has more to do with ice and pressure. Ice has more volume than water, so when the water inside of a pipe freezes it expands and creates pressure. That pressure builds up and eventually cracks or breaks the pipe.
Once the water thaws or if any unfrozen water reaches the damaged area, it has only one place to go: out of the pipe. This is why turning on faucets helps prevent bursting and flooding – it relieves the pressure so even if the water freezes it won’t result in any major flood damage.
A Pipe in My Home Burst – What Now?
The first thing you should do the moment you notice a pipe has frozen or burst is to turn off the main water supply. This prevents any flooding because no water will be flowing into your home.
Next, you’ll want to contact a professional restoration company. They can identify where the problem has occurred, if you aren’t sure, and make any needed repairs. Most restoration companies have plumbers they can quickly call on as well if needed.
It’s important to remember that you shouldn’t enter a flooded area until you know it is safe and that there is no risk of electrocution. If any flooding occurred because you did not identify the problem in time, you’ll need to work with a professional restoration company for help with cleanup.
What’s the Benefit of Having Pros Help You with a Burst Pipe?
The most obvious reason you’ll want to call in professionals when you have a pipe freeze or burst in your home is that they can get the problem under control as quickly as possible. Your goal is to prevent damage as much as you can and repair any damage that did occur as quickly as possible. Professional restoration companies can help you with this.
Restoration companies can assist you with:
- Identifying the exact location of the burst pipe and the damage caused to your property
- Determining the water’s path through your home using professional equipment
- Identifying areas in your home affected by water damage, including ceilings, walls, flooring, fixtures, and mechanical damage
- Determining the best plan of attack regarding cleanup and restoration
Can I Handle a Burst Pipe without Professional Help?
You might be tempted to DIY cleanup and restoration after a pipe bursts in your home, but this can be a big mistake. Keep in mind, it’s not enough to just dry out the area and replace anything that was damaged in terms of carpeting or furniture. Surfaces need to be professionally cleaned and an assessment must be done to ensure there is no risk for mold and other hazards. Professional water restoration companies also have the experience and equipment to ensure the job is done right the first time, which can save you a lot of money in the long run.
Restoration companies use a variety of tools to help you with flooding and water damage, including:
- Air movers
- Heating system
- Thermal imaging cameras
- Meters to measure moisture
- Wood floor drying systems
- Desiccant dehumidifiers
- Anti-microbial solutions
- Water extraction units
- Wall-cavity drying
Restoration companies offer a comprehensive service plan that ensures your home is properly cleaned and free of contamination after a flood. If you’re dealing with a burst pipe or need help after a flood, contact Rapid Dry Restoration at 303.710.8423.