When you have a plumbing problem, there may be an easy solution. Sometimes, pipe leak tape is the answer. Find out more about the tape and learn how you can use the tape while you wait for a emergency plumbing service to show up and fix your plumbing woes.

What is Pipe Leak Tape?

Pipe leak tape goes by many names, but it serves the same purpose. Teflon, plumber’s tape, and leak repair tape are all types of pipe leak tape used to repair plumbing issues. Typically, silicone or self-fusing tape is best for fixing hairline cracks and non-joint leaks. Pipe thread tape, known as Teflon, is often best for leaks at a joint. Because there are so many types of tape for plumbing, there are also multiple applications. But don’t make the mistake of trying to use the tape on your own and leaving it at that. Unless you have years of experience, you probably don’t understand when a plumbing repair is essential. You could end up doing more damage than good, so try to work with an emergency plumbing service. Although you can use plumbing tape as a bandaid solution, you should always consult with a plumber.

A Closer Look at Pipe Thread Tape

Pipe thread tape is also known as PTFE tape and Teflon tape. As previously mentioned, this tape is for your plumbing joints. However, it also works to lubricate the connection between joints. When you go to thread or disassemble the joints, the tape makes the process much smoother. 

A Closer Look at Silicone Tape

Also known as self-amalgamating tape or self-fusing tape, this tape sticks to itself. It doesn’t stick to your pipes. To use this tape, you should wrap it around a pipe leak to make a waterproof seal. It’s important to know that you should never use silicone tape on the threads of a pipe. 

The Common Uses of Pipe Leak Tape

If you notice a leak in your plumbing, the first thing you should do is to call a plumber. But while you’re waiting, you may be able to use leak tape to keep the problem from doing water damage. You can use pipe leak tape for either one of these applications:

Leaking Joints

The joints of your pipe may leak if they have a loose connection or if the putty seal is worn down. You can use pipe thread tape to make the connection tighter and to stop the leak. However, it’s essential to make sure the leak is in fact coming from the joint. It can be difficult to pinpoint the source of some leaks.

Fracture Leak

If your pipe experiences any damage, it could have a hairline fracture. You’ll know this is the case when you notice water coming from the middle of a pipe. With some silicone tape, you can make a temporary seal. As soon as possible, you should have a full repair. 

Tips for Using Pipe Leak Tape

Before you attempt a repair with tape, you should know how to use it. If you plan on using the tape on a leaking joint, you need to disconnect the connection of the pipes. But, first, you need to turn off the water. After you unscrew the leaking pipe, remove the old seal and wrap the tape around it. The tape must go in the opposite direction in which you will screw the pipe back in. Otherwise, it won’t work. The tape should be snug with the threads, and you need to wrap it about four to six times. Typically, you should start at the second thread from the bottom and work your way up to the end of the pipe. Then, screw the pipe back into the joint and watch it for leaks. In the case of a fracture leak the process is easier. Find the location of the leak and turn off the water. Then, dry the wet portions of the pipe and wrap the tape around it. Make sure the tape is tight and overlap it several times. To make sure you fully cover the leak, consider wrapping the area around the leak as well. Turn the water on and check for water. If no water comes out, you’ve successfully stopped the leak for now.

The Fix Isn’t Necessarily Permanent

You should know that your tape job won’t last forever. If you used thread tape and you installed it correctly, the fix could last for years. But an improper installation won’t do you much good and will require another repair. As long as the joint isn’t leaking, you should be able to refrain from calling out a plumber. Once you notice the water coming back, it’s time for professional help. In the case of silicone tape, you need to call a plumber ASAP. The tape merely prevents a leak from worsening or keeps you from wasting water. Even though water no longer leaks from a fracture, the tape won’t last for long. It’s essential to call for help. In general, pipe leak tape can be a very valuable tool. However, it’s not always easy to use and is no substitute for a plumber. Before you even attempt to use pipe leak tape, you should be sure you know where the leak is and how to use the tape.

Call Us for an Emergency Plumbing Service

The next time you have a plumbing leak, don’t wait to seek help. The tape may not be an answer to your problems, and in the meantime, you could experience water damage and other issues. At the first sign of a leak, call an emergency plumbing service. You don’t need to wait weeks or even days to get the assistance you need. Here at Reliability Home Services, we’re ready to help you with all of your plumbing leaks. When you need a emergency plumbing service, we’re ready to answer the call. You can count on us to show up and repair your leak quickly and efficiently. Call today to learn more.