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What To Do When You Have A Burst Pipe

What To Do With When You Have A Burst Pipe
Burst Pipe, commercial claims, Domestic claims, Frozen pipe, insurance claim, Insurance Claim Management, Insurance Claims Handling, Loss Assessor, Pipe freezing, water damage, Water pipe burst

What happens when a pipe bursts?

Burst pipes can result from various factors, including increased water pressure, wear and tear over time, and notably, frozen pipes. When pipes freeze, the water inside them expands. This expansion exerts pressure on the pipe walls, leading to potential ruptures. When a pipe does burst, water damage is an immediate concern, especially if not addressed swiftly.

How do you tell if you have a burst pipe?

Signs of a burst pipe can range from subtle to evident:

  • An unexpected spike in your water bill.
  • Reduced water pressure when you turn taps on.
  • Puddles of water appearing in unusual places.
  • The sound of rushing water behind walls.
  • Mold and mildew appearing in areas they hadn't previously.

How serious is a burst pipe?

A burst pipe is a pressing concern for homeowners. Beyond the immediate water damage that can erode structures and damage personal belongings, long-term implications include mold growth, which can have health implications, and potential complications with plumbing systems.

What to do when you have a burst pipe?

  1. Stop the flow of water: The first step is to turn off the water supply or shut off the water supply. Knowing the location of your home's main water shut-off can be a lifesaver in these situations.
  2. Call a plumber: It's crucial to get professional assistance. A plumber can assess the broken pipes and recommend repair or replacement solutions.
  3. Document the damage: Before cleaning up, take photos of the water damage. This will be crucial when making an insurance claim.
  4. Dry the area: Use fans, warm air from a hair dryer, or dehumidifiers to dry the affected spaces. For minor leaks, even simple measures like mopping can prevent more extensive damage.
  5. Inspect other areas: Check crawl spaces, exposed pipes, and other areas to ensure there aren't other leaks.

Can you make an insurance claim for burst pipes and water leaks?

Home insurance policies typically cover "sudden and accidental" damages, and a pipe burst in your home often falls under this category. However, it's essential to differentiate between sudden incidents and those arising from neglect or wear and tear.

When you're ready to make a claim, ensure you:

  • Document all covered damage.
  • Contact your insurance company promptly.
  • Maintain records of all communication.
  • Understand your policy's specifics, such as dwelling coverage and personal property coverage.
  • Consider the difference between making a claim for a direct burst and more subtle water leaks. Ensure your policy's terminology matches your situation.

Preventing Burst Pipes

Prevention is always better than a cure. By taking a few preventive measures, you can mitigate the risk of experiencing a pipe burst:

  1. Insulate your pipes: Especially the exposed pipes in crawl spaces, attics, and outside walls.
  2. Maintain a warm environment: Consistently circulate warm air, especially during colder months, to prevent pipes from freezing.
  3. Regular inspections: Ensure you periodically inspect your plumbing system, looking for signs of wear, rust, or small leaks.

The Benefit of Hiring a Loss Assessor: Spotlight on Oakleafe

In the aftermath of a burst pipe, homeowners often find themselves overwhelmed. The technicalities of insurance claims can be intricate, and ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve can be daunting. This is where hiring a loss assessor like Oakleafe can be invaluable.

Oakleafe can guide you through the nuances of your home insurance cover, ensuring that all damage is appropriately documented and that you understand the subtleties of terms like "sudden and accidental" or "wear and tear." With their expertise, you're better positioned to navigate the insurance maze, especially when differentiating between claims for burst water pipes, other plumbing system damages, and broader water leak scenarios.

Moreover, having a dedicated professional on your side can mean faster claim processing, expert repair or replacement recommendations, and overall, a smoother, less stressful experience.


Burst pipes and the water damage they bring can be a homeowner's nightmare. While understanding the signs, causes, and immediate response steps is crucial, navigating the insurance claim process can often add to the stress. By partnering with professionals like Oakleafe, homeowners can ensure they're equipped not just to tackle the immediate crisis but also to navigate the insurance landscape with confidence and clarity.

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