Pipe bursts can easily catch you off guard and cause you a headache. That’s why you should know how to handle such an incident when it happens in your home. Thankfully, the top real estate agents have some valuable tips that can guide you through the process. These notes would help you deal with a pipe burst problem and clean the mess it brings. You’d also know how to make an insurance claim to help you with the costs. Most importantly, this guide includes inputs on how to avoid pipe bursts from happening in your home.
What the Top Real Estate Agents Say About Pipe Bursts
Immediate Steps to Do When a Pipe Bursts in Your Home
Yes, a pipe suddenly bursting somewhere in your home is a major emergency. It demands a lot of inconveniences and costs from you, especially when it causes water damage. That’s why the best Realtor reminds you to be quick with every step to minimize damage and costs. After all, every second counts; thus, you should complete these initial steps as soon as possible:
1. Shut Down Your Home Water Supply
First thing first, turn off the main water supply for your entire household. That is to minimize water damage and keep the water bills from rising uncontrollably. Houses usually have their main water valves in the basement, crawlspace, or near the water heater.
2. Drain All the Faucets
Next, drain all the faucets, pipes, and toilets in your home. The top real estate agents tell you that it helps relieve the pressure from the pipe and avoid further freezing. It also helps you smoothly fix the damaged pipe or clean wet areas.
3. Deal with Electrical Hazards
Water and electricity instantly spell danger when they come in contact with each other. That is why it is wise to be vigilant and check if any electrical wires or equipment comes in contact with the water. Shut down your home electric supply and remove electrical equipment away from wet areas when necessary.
4. Spot the Damaged Pipe
You can do this after dealing with electrical hazards or while draining the pipes. Carefully locate the burst pipe, then apply a patch if it is small enough. Note, however, that patching a pipe is just a temporary solution and permanent repair is still necessary.
5. Call a Professional Repair Service
Calling a reliable service for help is essential regardless of you having some pipe repairing skills or not. And you should do it immediately so the experts can begin fixing your burst pipe in no time. Here’s why:
- Professional services can provide quality repairs for you. That means your pipe can last longer, and you don’t need to worry about another pipe burst. They can make additional adjustments and make your water supply flow smoother than before as well.
- These experts can also finish the job considerably faster. The top real estate agents say that translates to lesser downtime for you and your household. That’s without sacrificing the quality of their service.
- Moreover, professional services have enough licenses and insurance policies for their job. So, when they’ve done a faulty job, you can demand them to go back and redo the fix for free. That’s also why reliable services always produce quality fixes to avoid later issues.
Yes, you need to prepare around $1,000 to $4,000 for a professional service. That depends on a few factors, such as your location and the condition of the pipeline. Prepare for higher costs when you’re calling for an off-hour service too. However, considering the perks that they bring, a professional service sure is worth paying for.
Making an Insurance Claim for Pipe Burst
Yes, you can make an insurance claim when a pipe burst results in water damage in your home. However, the top real estate agents remind you about these critical points when making a claim:
1. Know what to Expect
First, you should have an idea about your insurance policy. That is essential to know what to expect from your claim, which is vital for gauging your budget. You can ask your insurance agent about the matter or talk with a public adjuster.
2. Take Comprehensive Photographs
Next, take as many photos as you can. The pictures must show the full extent of the situation. That includes the water damage as well as the affected spots and items.
The top real estate agents say that a complete set of photos helps you prove the legitimacy of your claim. Such documentation helps you get the best amount as well. Some homeowners even take around a thousand photos to support their insurance claim for pipe bursts.
Of course, such photos should carry as much information as possible as well. Say you want to show how deep the water in a room is. Put a ruler, a measuring tape, or a meter stick through the water, then take some pictures. You may even need to turn on the water supply in a while to photograph the leak
3. Prepare for the Inspection of the Insurance Company
The insurance company would then send a representative to your home to verify the situation. As a preparation, do not throw the items with water damage. For example, if the water has damaged your computer set, let the representative see the machine. That helps you get the correct amount from your insurance claim.
Tackle the Cleaning Tasks
Photo by Oliver Hale on Unsplash
Now, roll up your sleeves and begin with the cleaning tasks. And here are the essential points to remember for that:
1. Save Your Household Items
First, handle household items within and nearby the affected area. Salvage everything that water can damage, such as documents, family pictures, electronics, and wood items, among others. Wipe them clean and place them in a safe location.
2. Throw Away Damaged Stuff
Next, prepare to dispose of the items that you can’t save, such as electronics, upholstery, and carpeting, among others. The top real estate agents remind you that these items can attract molds and microbes to grow on them. That’s why you should not let them stay in your home. However, as stated earlier, wait for the inspection of the insurance company to be complete before throwing anything.
3. Dry the Room
It is vital to completely dry the affected area. That keeps molds and microbes from accumulating in your home. Here are a few valuable points to remember when drying up:
- After removing everything from the area, wipe all wet surfaces with rugs, mops, or old towels. Grab a bucket to drain water from whatever wipes your using too.
- Consider using a wet/dry vacuum cleaner or a submersible pump if there is stagnant water. You may need to rent a heavy-duty pump for deeper flooding water, especially if it’s in your basement.
- Next, use a dehumidifier, a fan or a heater for a faster drying process. Open the windows to let the moisture go out as well.
4. Disinfect the Affected Area
The next step is to thoroughly disinfect the affected area. That is to make sure that no mold or microbe would grow and accumulate. It is even a wise idea to call a reliable restoration professional or a mold prevention service. Moreover, call a professional carpet cleaner if your carpeting is affected.
How to Prevent Pipes from Bursting
Now, you already know how to handle a burst pipe. Of course, you don’t want that to happen again or avoid the first pipe burst incident in your home. That’s why you want to know how to avoid such a mishap. The top real estate agents have some tips for you to take note of:
1. Replace or Fix Problematic Pipes
You should replace or repair any problematic pipes in your home. These are pipes that can suddenly burst at any given moment. Yes, repairs and replacements mean some cost for you, but such a cost is significantly lower than handling a pipe burst.
To spot a problematic pipe, you should be vigilant about some signs. That includes shakey pipes or visible cracks. Changes in the color and odor of the water are also something to watch out for.
2. Observe Handy Winter Habits
A frozen pipe is a common cause of pipe bursts. That’s why you should winterize your pipe by wrapping it with insulation foam before winter starts. Insulate unheated rooms in your house as well, such as the attic and the basement. Moreover, be sure to drain outdoor water sources before winter, such as your sprinkler.
3. Observe Consistent Home Temperature
Lastly, you should keep your home temperature at a constant level. Ideally, you should not allow the thermostat to go below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. That can help avoid your pipes from freezing and bursting.
Remember what the Top Real Estate Agents Say about Handling Pipe Bursts
With these helpful tips in mind, you sure can deal with pipe burst incidents in your home. But of course, put more focus on avoiding such a mishap from happening in the first place. Also, feel free to talk with one of the top real estate agents for more details.