Checklist for Repairing Water Main Breaks and Leaks
Use wood plugs to stop small holes temporarily. (Replace
wood plugs with permanent metal plugs at a later date.)
Temporary wood plugs can be used to plug ends of pipes up
to 8 inches in diameter. Brace the plugs to withstand the
pressure in the main.
Repair joint leaks by recaulking the joint, if caulking has been
used in the joint.
Cracks in mains
Shut off valves
Cracks in mains usually require that the valves be shut off in
the affected area, especially in severe main breaks. Notify
the fire fighting authorities in case of main shutoff.
Repair leaks in mains using split sleeves or mechanical
couplings. Split-sleeve and mechanical-joint repair fittings
offer the best method for quick, effective repairs. Several
companies manufacture split-sleeve and mechanical-joint
Insert a split sleeve. Split-sleeve fittings can be installed
underwater if necessary.
Cut out a section of the cracked pipe and replace it with a
piece of pipe and mechanical couplings. Mechanical
couplings are manufactured by several companies for
various types of repair jobs. Consult the manufacturer's
instructions for installation methods to make the proper
selection and installation. If the break is too long for a short
insertion piece, insert a whole length of pipe.
Flush and disinfect
When a water main is opened for repair, flush and disinfect it
according to procedures presented in par. 2.2.40 before
returning it to service.