March 26, 2021
By Mark Paup

How to Temporarily Stop a Pipe Leak

Updated January 18, 2024

Almost all homeowners have been there before; it’s late at night, or the middle of the weekend, and suddenly, one of your pipes start leaking. In these situations, it can be hard to get a plumber over fast enough to take care of the situation before it spirals out of control. Fortunately, our experts at Golden Rule are available for emergencies. But what if you are not in our service area, and cannot get a plumber to come out to your house immediately? Keep reading to learn how to temporarily stop a pipe leak, courtesy of our skilled plumbers at Golden Rule.

5 Steps to Follow When Dealing with a Leaky Pipe

  1. Stop the Flow of Water: Before you can think about patching up a leaking or burst pipe, you must first stop the flow of water coming out of the pipe entirely. Look for the shut-off valve near the pipe in question, and if you cannot find it, shut off the water for your whole house. After that, turn on the sink, to make sure all the water is thoroughly drained from your system, and then proceed to…
  2. Clean Up the Water: You’re not going to be able to patch up a leaky pipe if you do not first clean up the water on it. You should thoroughly wipe the pipe that sprang the leak down, in addition to cleaning up any water on the floor or anywhere else around the pipe. This will make the whole process safer, in addition to preventing any possible water damage.
  3. Tighten Any Loose Bolts: One extremely common reason for pipe leaks is loose connections. You should always check a pipe once it has stopped leaking for loose bolts, and then tighten them as necessary. Even if a loose bolt was not the reason your pipe sprang a leak, it is not a bad idea to tighten everything up, just to prevent more water from leaking out (as long as you don’t go too tight, as this can damage your pipe, too.)
  4. Scrape off any Rough Edges: A lot of people skip this step, but to help this process go smoothly, it is a good idea to sand off any rough edges on your pipe that could be getting in your way. This will not only make your pipe easier to deal with, but it will also give you a chance to remove any gunk and debris that have built up.
  5. Patch the Pipe: After you have completed all the above steps, you are finally ready to patch up your leaky pipe. We suggest using an epoxy filling for this, as it will create a tight seal that should prevent any more water from leaking out before a plumber can arrive. You can also employ a makeshift cover using the kind of tubing used to make hoses. In a pinch, duct tape should also work fine to hold your pipe until it can be fixed by a professional.

For more DIY plumbing tips and tricks, call Golden Rule at 515-393-4526, or click here to send us a message online.

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