20 November A woman on a call crouches in front of a sink with leaking pipes

How to Patch a Leaky Pipe While You Wait for a Plumber

Posted by PlumbWize

A leaking pipe can be migraine-inducing for any homeowner.

Not only can it cause water damage to your floors, walls, and furniture, but it can also increase your utility costs. A hole in a water pipe as small as 1.5 mm can waste up to 3,570 litres of water every 24 hours and cost you $14.54 a day. Yikes.

If you notice a burst pipe, it’s important to call professional plumbing experts immediately. While they’ll be able to fix pipe leaks quickly and efficiently, it still takes them time to get there, meaning you need to know a thing or two about patching a leaky pipe to minimize the damage.

Here are five DIY ways you can do it!

Patching a Leaking Pipe: 5 Easy Fixes

Assuming things haven’t gotten too bad and you don’t need emergency plumbing services, these are five things you can try.

1. Use a Pipe Clamp

One of the easiest and most effective ways to temporarily fix a leaking pipe is pipe clamps. They work as their name implies, clamping the pipe to stop the leak.

You’ll need a rubber sheet or gasket, a screwdriver, and a wrench.

How to patch a leaky pipe using a clamp:

  1. Turn off the water supply to the pipe and drain.
  2. Cut a piece of rubber sheet or gasket that’s slightly larger than the leak and place it over the hole.
  3. Wrap the clamp around the pipe and the rubber seal, then tighten the screws with a screwdriver.
  4. Use a wrench to tighten the clamp further until the leak stops.

Pro tip: Be careful not to overtighten the clamp to avoid damaging your pipe!

A man using adjustable pipe clamps

2. Apply Epoxy Putty

Another way of patching a leaking pipe is to apply epoxy putty, an adhesive that bonds to metal surfaces when hardened.

You’ll need gloves, sandpaper, and a knife for this fix.

How to patch a leaky pipe using epoxy putty:

  1. Cut off the water supply to the leaking pipe and dry the area around the leak.
  2. Use sandpaper to roughen up the area around the leak and clean it with a cloth.
  3. Put on gloves and knead the epoxy putty until it becomes soft and pliable.
  4. Press the putty over the leak and smooth it out with your fingers or a knife (making sure to cover at least an inch around the hole.)
  5. Let the putty cure for at least an hour or as instructed on the package.

3. Use Tape

You can also approach patching a leaky pipe with tape.

We recommend plumber’s tape, such as Teflon tape or thread seal tape, because it’s designed for plumbing applications and provides a watertight seal around pipe joints. However, you can also use duct tape or electric tape if you’re in a pinch.

This method is best for patching small leaks in threaded pipes or fittings.

How to patch a leaky pipe using plumber’s tape:

  1. Turn off the water supply and drain the remaining water in the pipe.
  2. Wrap the tape tightly around the joint several times.
  3. Unscrew the joint and wrap the tape around the threads.
  4. Make sure to cover all the threads with tape and press it firmly into place.
  5. Screw the joint back on and tighten until secure.

4. Use a Rubber Hose

Another way of patching a leaky pipe involves a rubber hose. You probably already have one and it can work for different types of pipes, too.

For this method, you’ll also need hose clamps, scissors, and a knife.

How to patch a leaky pipe using a rubber hose:

  1. Turn off the water supply valve and dry the leaky area.
  2. Cut off enough hose to cover at least two inches on each side of the leak.
  3. Slit one side of the hose lengthwise with a knife so it can open and fit over the pipe.
  4. Slide the hose over the leak and secure it with hose clamps on both ends.

 A person uses plumbers’ tape on a PVC pipe

5. Use Repair Sleeves

Repair sleeves are another option for patching a pipe leak temporarily. These are metal tubes that can slide over pipes and seal leaks with rubber gaskets or O-rings.

How to patch a leaky pipe using repair sleeves:

  1. Cut off the water supply, then drain the remaining water.
  2. Use pliers to remove any burrs or sharp edges from the pipe around the leak.
  3. Slide the repair sleeve over the pipe until it covers the leak completely.
  4. Tighten the nuts on both ends with a wrench until they are snug.

Patching a Leaky Pipe Is a Temporary Fix. Call Plumbwize for Permanent Solutions!

Knowing how to patch a leaky pipe is great, but pipe clamps and other DIY fixes can only take you so far. Seeking a plumber’s help is a certified long-term solution.

The good news? PlumbWize offers 24/7 repair service for all types of plumbing problems, including leaky pipes, clogged drains, and much more. We have over 60 years of experience and pride ourselves on being the most comprehensive team in the area.

Give us a call if you’re looking for a professional plumber to fix your leaky pipes!

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