Plumbing Emergencies: What to Do Before the Pros Arrive

Man,at,home,dealing,with,neighbor,flood,leakPlumbing emergencies can strike when you least expect them, causing panic and potentially significant damage to your home. In the face of a plumbing emergency in Grand Rapids, it’s crucial to act swiftly and take immediate steps to minimize the damage before professional plumbers arrive. In this article, we will share advice on what to do before the pros arrive, including shutting off water sources, temporary fixes, and the importance of contacting professional plumbers promptly.

1. Shut Off the Water

When facing a plumbing emergency, the first and most crucial step is to shut off the water supply. In many homes, the main shut-off valve is located near the water meter or where the main water line enters the house. Familiarize yourself with the location of this valve ahead of time, so you can quickly access it during an emergency. Turning off the water supply will help prevent further water damage and flooding. If the emergency involves a specific fixture, such as a sink or toilet, look for individual shut-off valves near that fixture and close them as well.

2. Address Immediate Concerns

After shutting off the water supply, address any immediate concerns that can worsen the situation. For example, if a pipe has burst, it’s important to contain the leak by placing buckets or towels beneath the affected area to collect the water. If there is an electrical danger due to water exposure, turn off the electricity to the affected area to prevent electrical shocks. Taking these immediate steps can help mitigate further damage and ensure the safety of your home and family.

3. Use Temporary Fixes

In some cases, you may be able to implement temporary fixes to minimize the impact of the plumbing emergency until professional plumbers arrive. For example, if a pipe is leaking, you can use plumber’s tape or a pipe clamp to temporarily seal the leak. Similarly, a bucket or a container can be used to catch water from a leaking faucet or a burst pipe. These temporary fixes are not meant to be permanent solutions but can help buy time and prevent further damage while awaiting professional assistance.

4. Call Professional Plumbers

No matter how small or significant the plumbing emergency may be, it’s essential to contact professional plumbers promptly. Plumbing professionals have the skills, expertise, and specialized equipment to address plumbing emergencies effectively. When calling a plumber in Grand Rapids, clearly explain the nature of the emergency and provide any relevant details. This will help them assess the situation and prioritize your call appropriately. Be sure to choose a reputable and licensed plumbing company with a 24/7 emergency service to ensure prompt assistance, especially during after-hours emergencies.

5. Document the Damage

While waiting for the plumbers to arrive, take the time to document the damage caused by the plumbing emergency. Take photos or videos of the affected areas, including any visible water damage, leaks, or structural issues caused by the emergency. Documenting the damage will provide valuable evidence for insurance claims and can help expedite the restoration process. If you have relevant information about the plumbing system or previous repairs and maintenance, share these details with the plumber, as it can assist them in diagnosing and resolving the issue more efficiently.


Knowing what to do before professional plumbers arrive is essential when facing a plumbing emergency in Grand Rapids. Acting swiftly to shut off the water supply, addressing immediate concerns, and using temporary fixes can help minimize the damage caused by the emergency. However, it’s important to remember that these are temporary measures and should never replace the expertise of professional plumbers. Contacting professional plumbers promptly ensures that the plumbing emergency is properly assessed, repaired, and prevents further damage. With the assistance of experienced plumbers, you can regain control over the situation, restore your plumbing system, and avoid more significant and costlier repairs.

Got Questions? Let Us Help!

Since 1982, Rapids Plumbing has helped customers in Grand Rapids and surrounding cities with all of their plumbing and heating needs. We have Master Plumbers and Technicians available to help with all issues for commercial and residential customers alike. Our services cover installation, maintenance, and repairs for any products such as water heaters, furnaces, boilers, toilets, sinks, and more. Specific services such as checking for leaks, pipe repair, floor heating, remodeling, and even assistance with new construction, are all available. Backflow testing is also available to help prevent contamination in your domestic water supply. Free estimates are available from our plumbers and heating contractors when you call us today!