How to Fix a Leaky Pipe
Time Required: Under 2 hours
Once the water supply is shut off, decide how to fix a leaky pipe temporarily to prevent damage until a more permanent repair can be made. Find the exact source of the leak because pipe leaks in the middle of a straight run might use a quick-fix method that is different from what is needed near a pipe fitting. Discovering pipe leaks can be stressful but making a quick fix doesn’t need to be. This guide will show you how to fix a leaking pipe and outline the tools and materials needed to fix leaking pipes.
An epoxy putty can be applied over the source of the leak to temporarily seal it.
- Immediately turn off the water supply upstream of the leaking pipes.
- Drain the water from the damaged line and ensure that the area to be patched is clean and dry so that the epoxy will properly adhere to the pipe.
- Tear off enough plumbing epoxy putty to fully cover the surface around the leak.
- Knead the putty until it is pliable enough for application.
- Apply and cure the putty according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- After the putty has fully cured, turn on the water flow and check for leaks.
Some pipe repair kits have a special tape used to provide emergency relief from leaks.
- Immediately shut off the water supply to the leaking pipes or fittings.
- Following the manufacturer’s instructions, activate the fiberglass tape and wrap around the area of the leak.
- Ease of application and flexibility of material make it useful to use around fittings.
- Once it hardens to the manufacturer’s guidelines, turn on the water supply and check for leaks.
Repair clamps can sometimes be used for larger splits or ruptures in pipes.
- Immediately turn off the water supply to the leaking pipes and clean the area around the hole to be patched.
- Use a file to smooth any sharp edges that might cut through the neoprene rubber patch.
- Apply the patch and repair clamp so it evenly overlaps the damaged section of pipe.
- Tighten the clamps to seal the leak.
- Turn on water supply and check for leaks.
When figuring out how to fix a leaking pipe, remember that repair tape, pipe putty & clamps offer temporary solutions to an immediate problem. Once pipe leaks are sealed, your next step is just as important: Make plans for a permanent repair even if it's a small leak and call a licensed plumber if necessary.
Tip: Some types of pipes and fittings can require different repair methods to fix leaking pipes. If you're unsure of what material your water pipe is made from, consult our guides to types of pipes and pipe fittings or snap a picture to show to a Home Depot associate who can help you identify it.