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How Does A Plumber Fix Leaking Pipes

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  • 14-09-2021
How Does A Plumber Fix Leaking Pipes

How does a plumber fix leaking pipes. Find out more about emergency plumbing services and what they can do for a leaking pipe.

How To Detect A Water Leak In Your Home

There are a couple of methods you can employ to find a water leak in your home. Presuming you do not have a smart water leak detector of any sort, then you should first check your water bills. If your water bill has increased significantly in recent payments, then that could indicate a leak. 

Alternatively, you could try and detect a leak by taking a meter reading. To check this way, all you need to do is take the first-meter reading and then wait for a few hours before taking another. If you make sure not to use any water during these few hours, and yet you find your water usage has gone up by the second reading, then it's likely you have a leak. 

How plumbers Fix The Most Common Water Leaks

If you have a water leak in your home, then you will be faced with a decision. Can I handle it myself, or should I call for professional plumber services? While most common leaks are indeed manageable for someone even slightly competent at DIY several other factors should affect your decision. 

Cost, for example, even if you have the know-how, you may not have the tools or materials required for the job. These tools can be expensive, and sometimes it's just cheaper to hire a professional plumbers services to do it. Time is another consideration. Even if you have the tools and plumbing know-how, we often lead busy lives and that time spent fixing a leak could be better spent elsewhere.  

With that in mind, it's better to have a plumber fix your leaky pipes and fixtures in most situations. But how exactly does a plumber go about fixing these issues? 

Dripping tap 

A leaky tap is perhaps the most common type of water leak. It can be caused when the tap doesn't tighten properly or sometimes when people tighten it too much. Most people consider it a completely benign problem, more of an annoyance than anything else. While, in most cases, it is indeed benign, that doesn't mean it shouldn't be fixed. 

To do so, all they have to do is turn off the water at the mains (as you should do for any water-related repair work) and open up the tap with a wrench. Once open, the plumber can inspect the faucet's washer and identify if it just needs cleaning to remove debris or if it is damaged and needs a replacement.   

Leaky radiator 

A radiator leak is significantly more problematic than a leaky tap. The potential for damage is greater as it will often be leaking onto your floor, which means it can damage carpets and wood flooring, and if it seeps through, it can damage wiring. It's also a lot less simple to fix.  

If a plumber is going to fix a leaky radiator first, they will likely have to completely drain the system as in order to identify the problem, they need to see inside, and you don't want all the water spilling out when they do. Common causes of a leaky radiator include a damaged water valve or valve spindle. 

These parts can become damaged from corrosion, among other things, and if that's the case, then the plumber will have to replace them. 

Leaking plastic water pipe joints 

In order to fix leaking plastic water pipe joints, a plumber will first attempt to search for the source of the leak. This can be a little tricky sometimes, as when a pipe has a leak, the water doesn't always drip from the source. Sometimes the water will cling to the surface of the pipe and travel down it, so a plumber will first dry the pipes to identify the actual source better. 

Once the source of the leak, whether on the pipe joint or not, is found, the plumber can then stop the leak. A quick temporary fix that even you can do at home is to seal the leak by applying some sort of tape or repair epoxy onto the pipe. A more permanent solution to the problem, however, is for the plumber to cut away the leaking pipe joint and replace it simply.

For this process, it may not be necessary to turn the water off at the mains. Turning the water off in only the affected pipe section is possible as well.  

Leaking plastic water pipe 

How plumbers fix a leaking plastic water pipe is identical to fixing the pipe joint: Identify the source of the leak.Turn off the water supply to the affected area. Apply tape, putty or epoxy compound for a quick short term fix or use tools to cut out the leaking pipe section and replace it. 

Leaking water pipe underground 

Repairing a burst underground plumbing is often a messy business. The traditional and most common method of performing this repair is to dig a hole in the affected pipe section, which usually means ruining your lovely garden for a time. 

With the pipe exposed, the fix is very similar to other pipe fixes; either apply some sort of epoxy, putty or silicone-based seal, duct tape or cut out and replace the burst section of pipe. 

Depending on the circumstances of your house and its history, there are multiple kinds of pipe materials your underground pipelines may be made from, such as copper pipe or galvanised threaded steel.  Altogether it should take a plumber a couple of hours to dig a hole and fix this kind of leaking pipe because water pipes are typically not buried too deep underground, unlike sewer lines.

There are other methods a plumber can use as well that don't involve digging up your precious rose bushes. These methods include; trenchless pipe repair, underground pipe relining, horizontal boring. One thing these methods usually have in common is that the fix is initiated from the main plumbing entrance to the household rather than digging a hole in the actual area of the leak. 

Leaking from the bottom of the toilet 

You will know if you have a leaking toilet. If the sight of unsanitary water doesn't give it away, then the smell certainly will. When you get a toilet leak, the location the leak is coming from is pretty important. A leak at the toilet's base is relatively simple to fix, but a crack in the bowl or some other area will likely mean you need a replacement.

For a leak at the bottom of the toilet, the most likely cause a plumber will identify is a problem with the rubber seal at the bottom. To fix this, they will try to align the toilet properly if it is askew and then ensure the bolts pinning the toilet in place are secure. If that doesn't do it, then the seal itself is damaged and needs replacing. This can be done simply with a wax ring.

leaking shower or bath

A leaking shower or bath can be caused by several factors. These leaks are also potentially dangerous and should be dealt with as soon as possible. 

The first possible cause of a shower or bath leak is a leaking pipe that connects to the fixtures. To fix this, a plumber may have to access the insides of the bath or shower by taking off a side panel. Much like other pipe leaks, the fix is relatively simple once the source is identified and can be fixed with an application of a sealing agent or by replacing the damaged piping. 

The other potential cause of a bath or shower leak is when the silicone sealing starts to degrade, such as around the drain. This will allow for water to escape due to possible overflow and the build-up of moisture from steam and cause it to leak. Reapplying the sealant should fix this leak.

What should you do if you spot a leak?

Stop-gap leaking pipe repairs 

If the leak is open and obvious, then you might be able to handle it or at least prevent it from getting worse with a temporary stop-gap measure. Ideally, you will want to use a specialised plumbing patch kit that can be found at your local hardware store to clamp down on it.

If you don't have one of those at hand, a liberal application of duct tape around the pipe has a strong track record of fixing leaks.   

Turn on any taps leading from the pipe  

When you stop the water coming in at the mains, you might think it safe to start unscrewing pipes and such. That would be a mistake. Even though there should be no more water entering the system once you have turned the mains off, there are still gallons of water remaining in the system. 

To drain this, simply turn on your taps and leave them on until no more water comes out. Then you should be ok to perform repairs.

Turn off the water supply 

Your first course of emergency action upon spotting a leak is to prevent any further damage. Therefore you should turn off your water supply at the mains. You should do this even if the leak doesn't necessarily look that bad because depending on the type of leak, it can be difficult to tell how far the water has actually travelled from the source of the leak for it to be noticeable.


We offer services to both domestic and commercial customers. Our charges are highly competitive and realistic. If you are experiencing challenges with leakages, or perhaps your drainage in your home or at work is sluggish - Please contact us.