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f you have a broken water line in your yard, it is always a very serious issue. Broken water lines lead to flooding, home damage and can even pose risks to you and your family’s safety. Once you have discovered a water line has broken within your home or yard, there are a few steps that you can follow to help minimize the damage and buy time until a professional who knows how to fix a broken water line can arrive and assess the situation. Let’s take a look at the most important steps to take to temporarily halt any further damage to your property.

     1. Shut Off the Water and Drain Anything Remaining

Before you find a professional who knows how to fix a broken water line, shut off your water first

water main shutoff valve red
An example of what a water main shutoff valve looks like.

When a water line breaks, it will usually occur at the weakest point in the pipes. Lots of times, these breaks occur in your water main. Most commonly, water line breakages are due to poorly maintained pipes, invasive tree roots, or frozen pipes. Once you have determined your water line is broken, you should immediately find your water supply shutoff valve and cut the water supply. Usually, water main shutoff valves are located somewhere on the outside of your home. Then you should open any faucets and let the rest of the water in the pipe drain out. Once your pipes are free of water, there will be no more water leakage into your home.

Only once you have turned off the water supply can you call a trusted technician who knows how to fix a broken water line.

     2. Call A Trusted Local Plumber Who Knows How to Fix a Broken Water Line

Now that the water is off and no water remains in your pipes, it's time to contact a technician who knows how to fix a broken water line

man calling plumber home flooding into living room
After shutting off the water main, it's time to make a call to your plumber and communicate the severity of the leak.

When a broken water line occurs, you should always call a trusted plumber who can quickly and efficiently address the problem. Lack of water in your home is a major issue, so you’ll need to communicate to your plumber that you have an emergency situation.

     3. Turn Off All Outlets and Appliances

While you wait for assistance, make sure that you have everything turned off to prevent any further damage

circuit breaker example
Turn off any power source in your home to prevent further damage.

After determining the leak, it's time to shut down any appliances in your home until you can get your broken water line fixed. This is especially important for devices in your home that use water, like a dishwasher. Once all outlets and appliances are shut down, the personal dangers associated with flooding are greatly decreased. Whether water is entering your home or yard, you will need to shut off everything that uses water or electricity until the leak has been properly addressed.

      4. Find Your Water Meter and Check The Reading

By checking the water meter, you can determine whether the leak is underground or inside your property

water meter in yard black circle with readings
An example of the average water meter reading.

The water meter, usually located in your yard or near the curb, will preliminarily help you determine where your leak is coming from. When you find the meter, the measurement to pay attention to is the gallon calculating sweep meter. The gallon calculating sweep meter determines exactly how much water is entering your property. If the indicator has stopped after you shut off the water main, it means that the leak is coming from your property. Should the indicator continue to move, the leak is located somewhere between the water meter and the water line shut off. 

     5. Thoroughly Document Any Damage to Your Home and Yard

it's so important to take as many pictures of the damage as possible so you know what needs to be repaired

flooded backyard in the fall
Any damage related to the broken water line needs to be recorded.

When any damage occurs to your home that requires expensive repairs, you should begin taking photos immediately. These photos will come in handy when filing an insurance claim and addressing the damage after the fact. If there is any water that reaches your home, be sure to use a measuring tape to document the water level. A thorough documentation of water damage involves taking as many pictures as possible. You can never have too many pictures documenting every angle of the water damage that occured. After you have documented the damage, you can call a professional who knows how to fix a broken water line to begin repairs.


If your water line is broken, know that underground water leaks always require a professional to fix. At Restano Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, we can complete any broken water line repairs and perform regular cleanings. We only complete repair work using experienced, licensed plumbers who use professional equipment that meets our standards. So, give us a call today and let us get your pipes back up and running.

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