What to do if a pipe burst: DIY pipe repair

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The article provides different methods for eliminating leaks in water pipes, and also describes how to repair pipes on your own. You will learn about the types of repair compounds, whether there are ways to stop the pipe break. The article will tell you about the simplest and most affordable pipe restoration options..

What to do if the pipe bursts? DIY pipe repair

Anyone who at least once in his life has encountered the problem of pipe breakthrough or leakage knows that this trouble, in case of confusion, can cause flooding and other unpleasant consequences. If you act decisively at this moment, the consequences can be avoided.

First of all, you should shut off the water or drains, get rid of the water in the pipe to the maximum. If the water still continues to flow, we offer several repair methods..

Emergency adhesive

The correct name for this composition is emergency metal polymer. It consists of a two-component epoxy adhesive and metal dust. More precisely, the dust is already mixed with the resin, it remains to add the hardener at the right time. With this composition, you can close up a pipe in which the flow is gravity.

What to do if a pipe bursts

It should be noted that this composition only works at minimum pressure. There is also a composition “SILTEK V-37 Hydrocork” for sealing leaks in concrete and asbestos pipes.

Methods that provide connection or clamping of metal parts with threaded rods are called “cold” or locksmiths. They pass without application:

  • current (arc welding);
  • chemical reaction (gluing);
  • elevated temperature (vulcanization, adhesion).

Accordingly, these methods have a huge advantage over the others, since they provide a result without the slightest loss of quality (!) When working during a leak or breakthrough. More precisely, the result will be the same both in the presence of water and in a dry area..

Self-tapping screw

This versatile assistant will come in handy here as well. If a small diameter hole (1–4 mm) is formed in the pipe, a galvanized screw with a press washer can be screwed into it. If at the same time there is an automobile (aviation) washer with a rubber gasket, there will be no leakage for a long time, perhaps several years. But a hook will appear inside the pipe, on which a blockage may form over time. This method is good in that it allows you to eliminate emergency leaks even under pressure..


This is the most effective method of “cold” repairs, which, if done well, becomes a permanent element of the system. A properly made clamp can close a hole or crack up to 1/3 the circumference. This is especially true for cast iron sewers..

If your sewer pipes are highly worn, keep a few clamp blanks ready. This is a strip of metal (galvanized, preferably thicker) with drilled holes at the ends. Try the strip against the pipe to find out the clamp size. The “kit” includes a rubber pad (flap) and a bolt with a nut and washers. If a leak appears, simply install a flap in this place and clamp it with a clamp..

What to do if the pipe bursts? DIY pipe repair

The same goes for water pipes. A conventional worm clamp (or preferably several) is a reliable and quick way to eliminate leaks in any pipe with a diameter of up to 50 mm, regardless of the material.

What to do if the pipe bursts? DIY pipe repair

You can also use the tube holder as a flap clamp. Its rubber edge holds the pressure perfectly.

Finally, there are special pipe clamps for repairing pipes. They have a twin rod of two screws and a rubberized contact surface. Even professionals use such devices if they have to fix leaks on worn pipes that will soon be replaced. The use of welding in such cases is impractical..

What to do if the pipe bursts? DIY pipe repair

Soldering polypropylene (PPR)

Almost everything is said about the brazing of PPR pipes, but few know about brazing during a leak. If it happens that water is oozing from the pipe, it will not work well to solder it. To do this quickly, without waiting for the water to drain completely, insert the mashed bread into the pipe – as much as it will fit. Then, acting quickly and accurately, the ball valve should be soldered in the standard way. While the bread is soaking with water, the solder will already cool down. Then the loose cork is washed out by the pressure of water.

The following methods are only suitable if the flow is completely stopped..

Mounting tape

Reinforced metallized tape will help in sealing a burst (thawed) pipe. For repairs, you need to clean and dry the breakout section well. Then degrease.

Attention! The better the stripping, the more reliable the adhesive tape will stick..

Then wind the tape around the pipe as tightly as possible, blocking the break. A pipe sealed in this way maintains a pressure of up to 2.5 bar for years.

Video – how to fix a pipe with mounting tape

In the same way, you can glue other things – a barrel, a ladle, a flask..

Epoxy or bitumen

The site of the defect can be repeatedly covered with epoxy or bitumen primer (ideally hot bitumen). Apply the next layer on the cooled and hardened previous one. Before work, clean and degrease the surface. Suitable as a temporary repair for sewer pipes (especially at the joints).


The method is good for sewer pipes with a diameter of 50 mm. In principle, a patch can repair damage of any size, even more than 1/3 of the circumference. The operation can be carried out on site, but the pipe must be dry.

Operating procedure:

  1. Pick up and cut a patch from the same pipe. It should cover the defect by 15–20 mm.
  2. Clean and degrease the damaged area and patch.
  3. Apply any type of plastic adhesive to the contact surfaces – epoxy, hot melt, superglue, polyurethane (cold welding).
  4. Attach a patch and tape tightly.
  5. After drying, remove the tape.

This method is also used for steel pipes, only electric welding is used instead of glue and tape..

Butt joint

It is impossible to say exactly when and where this technique may come in handy, but it is better to know about it than not to know. Plastic bottles are made of heat-shrinkable plastic and it retains its properties, falling into our hands as a container. This can be advantageously used to reinforce the butt joint – by itself it is usually very weak.

To do this, two PPR pipes or fragments of pipes that need to be connected should be well joined. Then coat with one of the adhesives:

  • polyurethane
  • hot melt
  • epoxy

Apply the adhesive generously to the adjacent pipe section. After that, until the glue has frozen, put on a “sleeve” from a plastic bottle at the joint and heat it with a construction hairdryer until the plastic covers the pipe. It works best with hot melt glue – it is welded into the pipe and shell. The process is shown schematically in the video..

Video – how to solder a pipe

A sudden pipe rupture can completely destroy a room or even an apartment. The floors and furniture will swell, the upholstery will deteriorate, the electronics will fail, and you don’t have to talk about the bill that the neighbors will put up below. These can be the consequences of inattentive attitude towards pipes under pressure. Therefore, any trouble is easier and better to prevent than to correct..

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