Reminisce Wednesday's: Busted Pipes

Two years ago...

On a Saturday...

I was so proud of myself because I never workout on the weekends. But I pulled myself out of the bed and went to the gym. Believe it or not, I felt really good afterwards. I had a pretty descent breakfast and a fruit & spinach smoothie after. The sun was shining and I was enjoying what was the warmest day of the year. The temperature was somewhere in the 40's.

In the early afternoon I went downstairs to wash a load of clothes. As I'm going back upstairs I can hear the sound of "spraying" water coming from the front of the house. After some searching, I ended up in my garage staring at water spewing threw the bottom of the wall where my water meter is hidden.

Long story short, a pipe had burst and I wasn't sure what pipe. I called a plumber which I paid $75 just for him to come out and inspect.

He showed me a copper pipe and told me the pipe was not being used for anything. He was gonna need to cut the pipe and put a cap on it. The cost.....$306!

Of course, the price was much cheaper than what I was expecting, but you all know the diy'er came out immediately! All I heard was "cut and cap". Sounds simple enough for me! In my mind I could certainly handle something like that.

Here's what I did next and encourage everyone to do the same when tackling something very new that you have little knowledge of:

1. I asked the plumber what I needed in order to complete the job. He told me I needed a pipe cutter and a 1/2 inch Sharkbite. (btw, Sharkbite is a brand/company that produces fittings or what we call the "cap")

2. I went to my local hardware store and asked an associate to show me where both were located.

3. I asked the associate if there was any special instructions. There were not.

4. I paid $6.52 for the cap and $6.98 for a small pipe cutter. Yes, under $14 total!!

5. The cap came with a white plastic piece and I wasn't sure what to do with it. I Googled the product for instructions online but couldn't find anything about the plastic piece. I then went to YouTube and learned that if you are using the cap on copper, the plastic piece isn't needed.

6. Time to cap!! I cut the pipe close to the meter which is away from the exterior wall. This way the remaining pipe doesn't get too cold the next year. I then cut another piece about 6 inches from the first cut. I removed the 6 inch piece of pipe. I put the cap on the remaining pipe and pushed firmly until I was confident that it was on securely. 

**Step 6 and the most important step took me literally 5 minutes. I'm not lying nor am I exaggerating...5 minutes!!

7. I slowly turned the water back on, checked for leaks and....done!

It was so simple and easy! Had I not done it myself, I would have spent $75 for him coming out and an additional  $306 for him to do what took all of 5 minutes and $13.

In no way am I bashing the plumbing profession! I'm actually kicking myself for not going into some sort of service repair profession because I'd be making a killing!! BUT...He already had the pipe cutter and I'm sure the cap costs his company much less than I paid since they probably buy wholesale.

Yes, I know every situation will not be as simple as this one, but just make sure to ask questions before you decide to give your money away. We work hard for our money and we want to keep as much of it as possible or at least spend it on something we really want! I'v never met someone who wanted to spend their money on plumbing.

Do any of you have a similar situation? Reminisce with me! Share them in the comments section below! I would love to read about them!!


Previously published Mar. 2017


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