Water lines exposed in wall for leak repair.

What to Do When Faced with a Plumbing Emergency

Plumbing emergencies can strike at any time, day or night, often catching homeowners off guard and causing panic. From burst pipes to overflowing toilets, these unexpected incidents can lead to water damage, property destruction, and inconvenience. However, knowing how to respond calmly and effectively can help minimize the impact of a plumbing emergency and prevent further damage to your home. Let’s take a look at what to do in a plumbing emergency.

1. Stay Calm and Assess the Situation

The first step in dealing with a plumbing emergency is to remain calm and assess the situation objectively. First try to determine if the leak is from the water lines or the drain lines. If possible, locate the source of the problem or the general area of concern.  If the problem is from a water line, you’ll want to stop the water flow.  If the problem is from the drain lines, you’ll need to give a call as soon as possible.

Rob Williams, owner of Boerne based Olde Town Plumbing, finding a leak in the wall under a sink.

2. Shut Off the Water

In many plumbing emergencies, shutting off the water supply is crucial to prevent further flooding and water damage.  When your emergency is because of leaking water lines, the only way to stop further flooding in your home is to stop the water flow.  Locate the main shut-off valve for your home’s water supply and turn it off immediately. This will stop the flow of water to the affected area.

3. Contain the Damage

Once the water supply has been shut off, take steps to contain the damage and minimize the spread of water. Use towels, buckets, and mops to soak up excess water and remove it from the affected area. Move furniture to a dry area if necessary.  Use industrial style fans to being to dry the floors and walls if needed.

Two work vehicles from Olde Town Plumbing in Boerne, TX parked at worksite.

4. Call Olde Town Plumbing

While you may be able to handle minor plumbing repairs on your own, major emergencies require the expertise of a professional plumber. Olde Town Plumbing has emergency plumbers on call 24 hours a day.  We understand emergencies and work to get to your problem as quickly as possible.  When you call, we’ll ask you for detailed information about the emergency, so we’ll know what to expect when we arrive at your home.

5. Document the Damage

If the water damage from your plumbing problem will require an insurance claim, you’ll want to document the extent of the problem immediately.  Take photos and videos of the affected area, including any visible water damage, leaks, or structural issues. Then after the emergency has been evaluated and the leak repaired, contact your insurance company to file a claim.  Keep a record of all communication with your insurance company and plumber to facilitate the claims process.

6. Avoid Future Emergencies

After your emergency, you’ll want to ensure another plumbing mishap doesn’t take you by surprise.  You can schedule a plumbing inspection and regular maintenance for your plumbing system: water heater, valves, supply lines, toilets, sinks, tubs, and showers.  When one of the Olde Town plumbers in Boerne, TX performs an inspection, we look for weak or damaged plumbing fixtures, supply lines, and valves.  We recommend installing quarter-turn shut-off valves to make turning off a fixture’s water supply easy.  We work with you to identify potential issues before they escalate.

You may also want to install water leak detection devices that sense when water is present and sounds an alarm. These devices can be used under sinks, in water heater closets, beside a Reverse Osmosis system, in the laundry room or anywhere else you might have flooding from a plumbing fixture or appliance.

7. Monitor Affected Area

Monitor the affected area for any signs of lingering issues, such as water stains, mold growth, or unusual odors. If any concerns arise, address them promptly to prevent further damage to your home.

Call the Olde Town Plumbers for Repair Service

Rob Williams, owner Olde Town Plumbing, in front of Boerne, TX courthouse

Knowing how to respond to a plumbing emergency can make all the difference in minimizing damage and protecting your home. By staying calm, shutting off the water supply, containing the damage, and calling a professional plumber, you can effectively navigate plumbing emergencies. Preparation and quick action are your keys to tackling any plumbing emergency with confidence and resilience.


Give Olde Town Plumbing a call if you have an emergency or want to schedule preventive plumbing services.


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