Hearing the sound of rushing water in your home at night and having no idea where it's coming from is a homeowner's worst nightmare. While many plumbing emergencies have obvious causes and can be solved by turning off the fixtures causing the leak (such as the sink or shower), a rapidly spreading water spot on your walls, floor or ceiling is a major cause for concern. Calling a plumber that offers 24-hour emergency plumbing services is vital when you have a leak caused by sewer backup or a leak that does not stop when you turn off the water main to your home. If you don't fix the leak promptly, you can end up with even more serious damage to your home such as mold, rot, or foundation damage. If you wake up in the middle of the night and notice large water stains on your walls, ceiling, or floor, here's what you need to do.
Shut Off The Water Main Or Well Pump To Prevent Any More Water From Coming In
The first thing you need to do when you're facing a massive water leak in your walls is to prevent any more water from getting into your residence. In many homes, this can be done by pushing the lever on the water main to the down position. It should be on the side of your home nearest to your water meter. If your house has a well, cut off the electricity to the well pump. If you have an apartment, call emergency maintenance and ask where the water main for your unit is located.
Preventing water from getting into the home will stop the leak from progressing until you can have a professional plumber investigate the source of the leak. You should do this even if the leak doesn't look serious; a water pipe leak in the wall is often not visible to residents until the pipe has been leaking for quite a long time, and the conditions inside the wall may be much worse.
The worst-case scenario is that turning off the water main does not stop the leak; this can be common in apartments when a pipe in another unit is leaking and the water is traveling to your unit. You'll need the aid of a professional to track down these difficult leaks.
Move All Furniture Away From The Site Of The Leak To Protect Your Possessions
Just to be safe, move all furniture and valuables away from where you noticed the leak. This isn't only to prevent water damage, but sometimes sudden leaks at night can be a result of your sewer system or septic tank backing up into your residence. You definitely don't want to get any sewage on your possessions, because it's a major health hazard and very difficult to clean off.
Call An Emergency Plumber If The Leak Doesn't Stop
If turning off the water main does not appear to have fixed the leak, call a 24-hour emergency plumbing service to have a plumber sent to your house as soon as possible. A water leak inside your home will very likely cause mold and rot, so it's important to have the leak fixed immediately to help prevent further damage to your home. The plumber will be able to tell if the leak was caused by backflow from your sewer pipe; if this is the case, it's likely that the city will come to repair the problem.