To begin with, let’s define the concept of a heating system riser. The riser of the heating system is vertical pipes for supplying and discharging coolant to the heating devices of the premises of a multi-storey building, located one above the other. Usually these are two pipes, but there may be one.
In apartment buildings, heating pipes are usually made of metal or cast iron and are therefore susceptible to corrosion. There are also plastic pipes that can also leak. Of course, in the event of a leak, you need to call the master or repair the entire pipe, but some measures can be taken independently.
The first thing to do if a leak comes from a pipe in an apartment is to place a container under the pipe so that water does not go to the neighbors, and wrap the damaged area with any rag. Next, we call the emergency service, it is necessary to block the riser.
If the master has to wait a long time (holidays or weekends) or there is an opportunity and desire to carry out minor repairs on their own, the following are tips for fixing a leak in a copper, plastic, metal or cast-iron heating pipe with your own hands.
Let us consider in more detail the causes of malfunctions of heating risers.
Causes of failure and the appearance of leaks, breakage of pipes in heating risers
- So, the most obvious reason is dilapidated, old pipes.
- Incorrect installation of pipes, their incorrect repair and maintenance:
- leak in a threaded connection — poor sealing of the connection, stripped thread, cracks in the connecting fitting;
- leakage in the flange connection — loose bolts, faulty gaskets and distortions in the flanges;
- leakage in welded joints — poor-quality welding work.
- Marriage in the operation of equipment and pipes.
- When installing plastic pipes that are designed for cold water supply, they are deformed for hot water supply.
- Fitting failure.
- Water hammer and fistula in the pipe, which occurs due to a sharp increase in pressure.
- Outside the heating season, a pipe break may be due to improper hydraulic testing.
What to do when a small leak appears and how to fix it with your own hands (clamp, sealant). Repair of metal, plastic, cast iron and copper heating risers
If you need to make minor repairs to a metal pipe in its straight section or in a weld, you can use epoxy (emergency) glue and fiberglass. Before repair, be sure to clean the damaged area of old paint, clean and degrease the pipe. Apply glue and, if necessary, additionally strengthen with a metal clamp. They can be purchased in different sizes on the market or in building materials or plumbing stores. A clamp is a rubberized pad with twin traction, consisting of a pair of screws, which, in principle, can be made by hand. You will need a strip of thick metal, a rubber pad, washers, nuts and bolts.
Or we wrap the area with a piece of rubber and fix it with wire.
You can use sealant. Then we repeat the previous steps (clean, degrease) and apply the sealant clockwise.
If a leak has formed at the attachment points of the elements of the heating system, you just need to tighten the fitting with a special key.
Didn’t help, dripping? The reason may be the wear of the tow. In this case, it is necessary to press the fitting halfway, remove the old tow, clean the threads and wind a new one. However, be careful! The pressure in the pipes can cause a rupture of the junction and a flood.
Still flowing? The part thread may be damaged. In this case, call a specialist, and before he arrives, wrap the leak site (preferably with a piece of rubber).
Another option to close the leak (if the area is small) is to wrap the problem area with a cloth soaked in glue.
To prevent the formation of leaks in the places of the threaded connection, it is necessary to cover it with several layers of paint.
Repair of a copper heating pipe may be necessary when the metal is delaminated. The solution is high temperature brazing using hard solder. In the event of minor damage at the bends, low-temperature welding with soft solder is used.
Before repair, it is important to pre-clean the area from dirt and degrease it.
It may be necessary to repair the fitting that connects the 2 pipe sections. In this case, it may be sufficient to replace the nut or gasket.
When repairing plastic heating pipes, the damaged element is replaced with a new one.
If it is not possible to replace it, you can wrap a special reinforcing plastic patch around the damage and melt it with a welding machine.
So, summarizing the above, we indicate what actions are included in the repair of the heating system:
- eliminate leaks in appliances, fittings and pipelines,
- replace a separate section of the heater, tap,
- insulate various devices and pipes that are in cooling or open places,
- eliminate reverse slopes on pipelines,
- to install additional fasteners,
- troubleshoot the boiler
- replace gauges,
- clean and rinse elevators, expansion tanks, control and shut-off valves,
- flush the air collector system and adjust them.
What to do if the radiator section (plate radiator) is damaged
Before performing this type of work, the first step is to turn off the heating system. Next, you need to reset the riser system and disconnect the radiator.
Attention! Before you remove the radiator, substitute some kind of container under it, as there will still be water in the riser.
We disconnect the damaged area with a special radiator key and attach a new nipple.
We connect the heating system and start the risers.
If the plate radiator is damaged, it is necessary, in the same way as in the previous case, to turn off the heating and reset the riser system. Next, we clean and degrease the leak, apply a special mixture of cold welding to the area (which is an adhesive with a high degree of plasticity made on the basis of epoxy resin), wait for it to harden and turn on the heating.
What to do, and who is to blame, if neighbors are flooded from a burst of a heating pipe
Consider the legal side of the issue of flooding, which can occur as a result of leaking heating pipes.
So, there is Decree of the Government of the EU No. 491 of August 13, 2006, which determined that the common house property includes a heating system along with risers, radiators, control and shutoff valves, common house heat meters and other equipment on these networks.
The management company servicing the house must check the equipment 2 times a year and, at its own expense, troubleshoot, change damaged radiators, pipes, etc. However, if access to the apartment was not provided to inspect the condition of pipes and equipment, the owner of the home will be to blame for all further consequences.
Further. If the owner independently decided to replace pipes, radiators, etc. without agreement with the management company — the responsibility for the consequences passes to the owner.
It is recommended to keep all receipts and conclude contracts when carrying out any work with the heating system in order to subsequently resolve the issue in court.
Attention! There is a decision of the Supreme Court of the EU of September 22, 2009 (No. GKPI09-725), which excludes radiators with disconnecting devices in apartments from the common property of the house.
Therefore, this type of questions is always controversial, and starting with the legislative acts themselves.
Documents required to file a claim with the court:
- act of inspection of a flooded apartment,
- expert assessment of the damage caused,
- photo and video materials with the consequences of the accident.
And, of course, take contracts, checks, etc. with you. (if any) associated with the application.
If the management company is to blame, then it is obliged to compensate the damage to the owner of the “emergency” premises and the owner of the affected premises within 30 days.
If the owner is to blame, then the best way out is to draw up a peace agreement and pre-trial compensation for damages. This will save time and nerves for both parties.
And finally, the most important advice: prevention, control and timely repair will save you from future problems with heating systems.
Repair of heating pipes in an apartment and a private house: features
As mentioned above, routine inspection (at least 2 times a year) and repairs in multi-apartment residential buildings are carried out by the management company.
Everyone knows who should take care of everything in a private house — this is the owner, to whom advice is given in this chapter.
Advice. Do all the work, if possible, in the warm season. So that during the heating season you do not have to do without hot water and heating.
It is useful to know that the heating system consists of three elements:
Additional elements may be present: floor heating pipes, circulation pump, etc.
The gas boiler can only be replaced by agreement with the gas service. She will also do the right thing.
An electric heating boiler can be repaired in case of the following faults:
- decrease in heating of the coolant,
- failure of the control unit,
- power surges in the network, poor-quality water that causes scale and salt deposits on the heat exchanger, etc. external factors.
First of all, we check the indicators of the power supply, the pressure in the system and the level of water consumption. We check the correct connection of the electrical wiring.
Malfunctions can also occur in the software adjustments of the boiler. In this case, you need to completely turn off and turn on the boiler again and perform a series of actions according to the instructions received when purchasing the boiler.
Regular cleaning of heat exchangers from scale will help to avoid more serious breakdowns in the future.
With the repair of the heating system, everything is clear. How is a major overhaul carried out?
Overhaul of the heating system includes:
- replacement of the heating circuit (pipes, radiators, underfloor heating / baseboard, etc.),
- partial replacement of pipes,
- installation of underfloor heating system,
- replacement of boilers, furnaces, heat pumps, heat accumulators, etc.
- complete replacement of the heating system.
Of course, major repairs do not need to be carried out before each heating season. It is necessary in the case when repairs are impossible or unprofitable, or, for example, when repairing a house.
So, the article shows how many ways there are to repair heating pipes, both in an apartment and in a private house, but it is also quite clear that there is nothing better than prevention.