How to Fix Plumbing Leaks Yourself
To fix a leak in one of the pipes in the plumbing of your home or commercial building, the first thing you need to do is to know the severity of the leak. For leaks you think are serious, call a skilled and licensed plumber in your area immediately. On the other hand, if you think you can fix the leak yourself, do it. Just make sure to protect yourself by putting on safety goggles, gloves, a work apron, a face mask, and other safety equipment.
Most leaks can be fixed using waterproof tape or plumbing repair kits, both of which you can get from hardware stores. On the other hand, leaks that developed on joints can be tightened using wrenches. When tightening a joint, take care to avoid loosening the other end, as another leak can be created this way.
It is worth noting that not every pipe is screwed into place, and thus, tightening may not be a solution. While some pipes are welded, those made of copper are joined by brazing or sweating.
For a leak the size of a pinhole, tape and pencil might suffice. By snapping the business end of a sharpened pencil and taping it afterwards, the leak is plugged right away. You may also use epoxy paste or similar products in place of the pencil’s tip. Watch the newly-patched leak closely over the coming weeks, and if water will still leak out of it, contact a plumber right away.
Although plumbing repair kits have rubber, clamps, and other things that can stop a leak in a pipe, the named items might be all you need. Place the rubber pad over the leak and clamp them on the pipe using the clamps. Once you have done this, expect leaks to stop.
If you do not have a rubber pad, you can substitute it with part of a garden or rubber hose. Slit the hose lengthwise to form a rectangular-shaped patch that fits on the pipe easily. You may need at least three hose clamps to secure the patch.
Keep in mind that a patch will not work against large leaks and gas leaks. For these problems, hire the services of a skilled, licensed, and well-equipped plumber immediately. This way, you avoid making the problem worse and paying more to fix this and other problems that might have arisen due to trying to solve these problems on your own.