How to Handle a Plumbing Emergency

When you find yourself in the middle of a plumbing emergency, the first thing you must do is get professional help. Water flooding from a broken supply line, an overflowing appliance or a sewage backup can cause expensive damage to your home and its contents in a very short amount of time! This is not the time to get distracted with do-it-yourself repair endeavors. Instead, call a professional and take these important steps to help minimize damage while help is on the way.


If you haven’t done so already, take the time to find where your main water shut off valve is located in your home. Learn how to operate it before you find yourself in an emergency situation. If a special tool is required for shut off, make sure you place it and keep it somewhere close to the valve. Test the valve annually and have it evaluated by a plumber it seems difficult to turn.


Whenever the main valve is turned off, you should turn off the water heater too. If you have a gas water heater, rotate the gas valve to the “off” position. If you have an electric water heater, turn the power off at the switch or circuit breaker.


Many plumbing fixtures like toilets and washing machines have their own separate valves that control water flow to that specific fixture. In the event of an overflow or other malfunction, close the valve on these fixtures to shut off the water supply. Be sure to test the operation of these individual valves from time to time as they may become frozen or difficult to turn.


Once the main water supply is shut off in a plumbing emergency, your system can by drained more fully by opening your outdoor spigots. When your plumber arrives, be sure to let him know that they have been opened.


This site of water rushing into your home can create a panicked feeling of helplessness. Do your best to remain calm and keep your priorities in order by calling your local plumbing service first. Once they are on their way, focus your efforts on keeping damage in your home to a minimum.

At O’Quinn’s Plumbing Service, our goal is to help our customers in the following Loudoun County, Virginia Areas: Leesburg, Purcellville, Sterling, Lovettsville, Middleburg, Herndon, Hamilton, Ashburn, Lansdowne, Brambleton, River Creek, South Bridge, South Riding, Round Hill, Bluemont, Upperville, Waterford, Paeonian Springs learn more about plumbing and how to manage and maintain their home’s plumbing system.