Keeping Your Home Cool during the Sweltering, Summer Months

Vertical Water Damage And Pipes In The Wall: What To Do Next

by Anthony Graves

Seeing water damage develop up and down the space of a wall is very unnerving. It is even more unnerving when you realize that there are pipes behind that wall and that this water damage is very likely the result of the pipes in the wall. When you know or have a pretty good idea of what is happening, you should do everything you can to fix this as soon as possible. Here is what you do next.

Take Pictures of the Water Damage as You See It Now

It is possible that your insurance company may cover the water damage. If there is a remote chance for compensation, take pictures to show the insurance company. It also helps to have a visual reference for the plumber/plumbing contractor who will need to be called to help with the plumbing repairs

If the Wall Squishes, Start Pulling It Out

As long as the wall feels cold and squishy, it is safe to start pulling out the damaged parts and throwing them out. You will need to do this anyway so that the plumber can get to the pipes and repair them. Pull down and throw out as much of the damaged wall as you can, making sure to expose the pipes behind the damaged wall. Not only are you removing parts of the wall that would have to be demolished and replaced anyway, but you are also exposing the pipes so that you and the plumber can see where the pipes are leaking. (Conversely, if the wall does not squish and/or is not cool to the touch, do not pull it out. Leave it for the plumber to do.)

Note Where the Pipes Are Leaking So You Can Point It out to the Plumber

Note where the pipes are leaking. In some instances, you may be able to see quite clearly where the pipes have a problem if there are large rusty holes in the pipes. If the leaks are just coming from the seams of the pipes, that is something the plumber can fix easily. Otherwise, the plumber will have to replace the rotten metal pipes with sturdier copper or PVC pipes that will not rust and last much longer. 

Schedule an Appointment with the Plumber

Somewhere in the middle of all of this work, you should call and schedule a visit with a plumber. Let him/her know what is going on with the wall and pipes. He/she should be able to make it out within a day or two of your call.