Copper plumbing is one of the most frequently used forms of pipe material in homes, with approximately 95% of homes using copper. While the material is quite popular, it is prone to damage over the years. Here are some tips for dealing with a copper pipe that is leaking.
Know The Different Copper Pipes
There are actually three different grades of copper plumbing used in modern homes, known as type L, type M, and type K. The main differences between these pipes will be the thickness of the pipe itself and what purpose it is used for. While they may have the same outer diameter, a pipe made with thicker material is going to have a smaller inside diameter. Type L copper pipes fall in the middle in terms of wall thickness and is what is typically used in residential homes. This is important to know in case you ever need to replace a section of copper plumbing.
Know Why Copper Pipes Leak
There are a few problems that can happen with copper plumbing, with a common issue being corroded plumbing connections. This is when two copper pipes are welded together using a joint. There can also be pinhole leaks, which as the name implies, is when a small hole forms in the pipe and causes water to leak out from it. The water can often drip out in a small amount that isn't even noticeable at first but can cause damage over time if not fixed.
Know How To Find A Leak
If you have a suspicion that a copper pipe is leaking, you'll need to figure out how to track it down. It actually helps to run water from the faucet at the endpoint of the pipe, which can cause the water to come out of the hole. You may need to press your ear against a wall and listen for the sound of water dripping, or try to observe pipes that are exposed for water dripping off of them.
Know How To Fix The Leak
The easiest way to fix a pinhole leak is to use a pipe repair clamp. These can be purchased at your local home improvement store, and they clamp over the damaged portion of the pipe by sealing rubber around the hole. If you have a leak around a joint, you'll need to replace the entire joint to fix it for good. However, a temporary solution is to cover the joint seams with rubber cement. It won't hold forever, but it will prevent the pipe from leaking more until you can replace the joint.
However, sometimes the problem is too big for you to fix on your own, so contact a plumbing service such as New Pipe Plumbing for help.