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When they are working, your pipes are a very simple system of moving water around your house, whether for drinking, washing or heating. But when they go wrong they can be a real pain, with the cost of repairing them can stretch from just a few pounds to a few hundred pounds. Symptoms of leaking pipes vary from loss of water pressure or boiler pressure (and your pilot light going out) to damp patches on the wall or ceiling.
You will certainly notice a burst pipe (which often happens due to freezing), but most pipe problems that require repairing are tiny fractures or pin-prick holes that are due to age and wear or problems elsewhere in your system. Though, of course, there is always that day when you go to hang a picture or nail down a floorboard and hit a pipe instead. The leak there should be obvious and getting on the phone to a plumber once you have tried to stem the flow is essential.
Those hard-to-find leaks in pipes are where your plumber’s expertise comes in and allows him to find and get on with repairing the problem pipe, whether it is plastic, steel or copper pipe. In most cases, the solution will be to replace the length of pipe that is damaged, or replace a part of it and make a new joint.
Similarly, repairing leaky pipe joints will usually involve replacing the failing piece of your pipework. Temporary repairs are possible, but if a pipe is damaged in one area it is likely to fail in another, so replacing the whole of the leaky pipe is best.
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