Plumbing emergencies usually occur suddenly and without any warning. Whether your home is old or new it is almost a certainty that you will encounter some kind of plumbing emergency at least once.
Learning to “quick fix” minor plumbing issues before they become major problems is the smart thing to do but in the unfortunate event of a plumbing catastrophe, homeowners should know the basics to keep things under control until the plumber arrives. Smaller plumbing troubles can usually be tackled without a plumber. Acquiring a little knowledge and keeping a few plumbing tools such as a pipe wrench, adjustable locking pliers and a rubber plunger can usually take care of the minor plumbing issues. Keeping an assortment of washers and checking for tap leaks and replacing worn washers can prevent major problems.
In the event of your plumbing failing, make sure you know where the main shut off valve is so that you can swiftly turn off the homes water supply. As these problems can arise at night it is always a good idea to keep a flashlight with your plumbing tools. Although most main water valves have a tap with which to turn it off, when moving into a new house it is always good to familiarise yourself with the main water supply valve so that in an emergency you know where the main water supply valve is and how to switch it off.
In the event of hot water dripping from a tap or worse, through your ceiling, where your geyser is situated, then you need to switch off the breaker that supplies electricity to the geyser as the geyser has an element that will burn out once the water has drained from it. By simply switching off the electricity supply, a costly repair can be prevented.
A very common problem faced in a household is a clogged or overflowing toilet. Before running for the main supply valve, a quick resolution to prevent a mess is to first turn on a cold water tap in a nearby sink or bathtub as this will slow down the water flow to the toilet and prevent a flood.
While waiting for the plumber, if possible try and mop up the area. Removing any furniture or personal items from the area will give the plumber space to get to the job and have your plumbing back to normal as swiftly as possible. It’s a good idea to keep towels handy should it be necessary to mop up any spills. Be sure to keep children and pets well clear of the problem area for their own safety.