Home / Blog

Common Water Leaks & How To Fix Them

Has your water bill suddenly increased but you haven’t been using more water than usual? Or are you being kept awake by a dripping tap? You may have a small water leak somewhere in your property. It’s important to check, as leaks can cause water damage or affect your boiler pressure, central heating, and hot water supply.

We’ll guide you through how to fix a water leak in your home quickly and effectively while you wait for professional help. If you are experiencing other major leaks in your home, check out our articles on what to do if you have a damaged roof or a leaking boiler.

How to fix a leaking pipe

If you have a leaking pipe in your home, you may be able to fix this yourself, depending on how severe the issue is. Before calling an engineer to come and have a look, there are a few things that may help you solve the problem.

Turn off the water supply 

You should always turn the water supply off before attempting to fix a leak in your home. You can either do this at the water valve on the pipe closest to the leak, or at the stopcock, which is likely located under your kitchen sink.

Drain the taps 

Drain all of the water from the leaking pipe. You can do this by turning on the taps that are connected to the pipe and letting the water run out. When the water stops flowing from the tap, you know it’s fully drained. Then, dry off the pipe with a towel and cover your floor to protect it.

Identify the cause of the leak

It’s important to have a thorough look at your pipe to identify what’s causing the leak. The cause could be either:

A loose joint

You can fix this by simply tightening the joint. You can usually tighten the joint by hand, but it’s worth having a spanner handy, just in case.

A cracked or split pipe

This can occur as a result of corrosion or if someone accidentally hits the pipe during DIY work.

How to seal a leaking pipe

While you’re waiting for an engineer to repair a leaking pipe in your home, there are some temporary fixes you can try in the meantime. You’ll need plumber’s tape and epoxy paste, which you can normally find at hardware stores.

Follow these steps below on how to seal a leaking pipe:

  1. Turn off the water supply
  2. Locate the source of the leak
  3. Apply plumber’s tape to cover the leak
  4. Wrap the plumber’s tape around the pipe several times, until it’s fully sealed
  5. Apply epoxy paste to any spots in the pipe that are still leaking water
  6. Leave this to dry for 20-25 minutes

These steps should hopefully allow you to fix any leaks and prevent further damage. However, these solutions are only temporary, so make sure you either replace the faulty pipe or have it properly repaired by a professional.

How to fix a leaking hot water heater

There are a few things you can try as a temporary fix for leaking hot water heaters, depending on the source of the leak.

  1. Turn off the supply

If your model is electric, locate the circuit breaker box and switch off the breaker that says ‘water heater.’ If it’s gas, use the on/off switch near the bottom of the tank. If the water leakage is significant, you will also need to turn off the water supply.

  1. Identify the source of the leak

There’s a few places the leak could be coming from, including:

Cold water inlet or hot water outlet

These are the pipes connected to the hot water tank at the top of the unit. If they’re leaking, they may need to be tightened with a pipe wrench.

Temperature and pressure relief valve (PRV)

This valve is a safety device that kicks in if the water in the tank gets too hot or if there’s too much pressure inside the tank. You can find this on the side or top of your tank.

If you think there may be a leak in the valve, follow these instructions:

  • Inspect the valve for signs of leakage.
  • If the valve is closed and leaking water, it has worn out and needs to be replaced.
  • If it’s open, it may be stuck in this position. We recommend getting an expert to take a look.

Drain valve

When water is leaking from the bottom of the tank, it could be coming from the drain valve. Check this is closed and watertight. If you can’t see an obvious problem, it’s best to call an engineer to have a look.

Internal tank

A leaky internal tank is hard to spot, as it’s underneath the outer casing of your appliance. A telltale sign of a leak is water escaping from the bottom of the unit. This is quite common when internal tanks get older and deteriorate over time. In this case, it’s often cheaper to install a new tank than attempt to get it repaired.

Get comprehensive boiler and central heating cover with Hometree

It can be difficult to know how to fix a leak, and you can’t always do this yourself. The best way to protect your home is to ensure you have the necessary cover for your boiler and central heating system.

Hometree offers fixed price repairs for water leaks under our comprehensive care plans. Our experts are here for you 24/7. Get in touch and we’ll arrange a visit from one of our local engineers at a time that suits you.

We’ll aim to fix the issue on the spot, or we’ll order the parts that need to be replaced and return to complete the job as soon as possible. Once the leak is fixed, you can live comfortably knowing that you have full protection in the future.

We Beat or Match Any Quote

Call 0330 912 4843 and we’ll beat or match any quote.

Serious About Service

24/7 claims support & rated Excellent on Trustpilot

Cover Match Guarantee

Get a £50 gift card if you find something we don’t cover

All Gas Boilers Covered

All makes and models, regardless of age