Real Estate & Around the House

The Importance of Quick Action in Water Main Break Repairs

May 13, 2023

If you witness water bubbling out of the roadway or sidewalk in front of your property, it is essential to act quickly. Many variables can cause water main breaks. Before beginning repairs, the crew must request the locations of all buried utilities in the area. This can take up to two hours.

Call the City

The city is responsible for fixing or repairing a water main break if it affects the public, but homeowners are still responsible for their own lines. It’s a good idea to keep your city’s hotline number on your phone, just in case. Some signs of a broken water main, like gushing water or wet soil, are apparent. Other symptoms are less obvious but as important, like your water bill going up without reason. The longer a leak is active, the more damage it can do. So it’s essential to be aware of possible signs of a break and act quickly. Working with a plumber with experience and multiple crews available daily is also a good idea. This way, they can be there as soon as you need them. The more prepared you are, the easier and faster you will get your water main repaired.

Call the Water Bureau

Water main breaks are dangerous for the community because they create intrusion points for pathogenic bacteria to re-enter treated drinking water. Cracks and holes in public water pipes can also lead to flooding and property damage and cause contaminated water to seep into the ground. These water leaks can even contaminate the streets, which is why it’s so important to report any signs of a broken water line as soon as you notice them.

While EID regularly monitors the system for pressure changes and signs of a break, staff often learn about a leak from residents who call the hotline or online reporting system. When you report a water main break, please include the leak’s location so crews can investigate. Remember that many of these visible leaks of fresh water come from a water service line on private property, and the property owner is responsible for repairing these lines. In those cases, the city does not send an insurance adjuster to these locations, as homeowners’ insurance typically covers them.

Report the Break

A water main connects your home to the public water supply and ensures you always have adequate water. These pipes are significant, and they can break for several reasons. The most common sense is old age, but weather and severe temperature changes can also cause a water main to break. These breaks can have a very significant impact on both the city and local businesses. The rushing and leaking water can damage sidewalks, roadways, and homes. Additionally, it can cause the sewer system to back up. If you’re in the area on a break, you first need to report it to the city. This will help make sure the issue gets fixed as quickly as possible. When a break occurs, turning off the water in your house as soon as possible is essential. You can do this by closing the water shut-off valve. This is usually located at the front of your home where you connect your hose or in the basement near the water heater.

Call a Plumber

Water mains are the underground pipes that carry water from a city’s supply to your local street and then to your house plumbing. When breaks occur, the local utility is responsible for repairing them, but residents can help by calling a plumber immediately and avoiding the area. Unexplained puddles around your home can indicate a broken water line, so you must call a plumber immediately if you see one. Water line leaks can cause structural damage to your property, costing you a lot of money in repairs. Once the break is fixed, you should run your faucets for a few minutes to flush out any impurities in the pipes and ensure the water is safe to use again. You can also boil your water for a few minutes to kill any bacteria that may have entered the supply. Then you can resume regular water use and enjoy the benefits of a well-maintained plumbing system.

Contact Your Insurance Company

There are a variety of reasons for water main breaks. While aging pipes are a significant factor, human error, and construction can also cause a break. These mistakes can include incorrect excavation on construction sites or using the wrong tools for pipe installation. If your neighborhood is affected by a water main break, you should contact your homeowners’ insurance company to determine if the damage caused by the broken line is covered. However, this does not guarantee that your policy will cover the damages. A broken water line may flood your driveway or yard. If so, do not drive through or walk through the flooded area. Walking through a few inches of water can easily lead to a slip or injury. Also, be sure to pay attention to any water boil warnings. This is a sign of contamination in your water from the damaged line. Boiling your water can help eliminate these contaminates and make the water safe for drinking, cleaning, and washing. It can also help keep you and your family healthy.

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