January 28, 2023

Typical Causes of Pipe Rupture

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Flaws in a pipeline system can result in significant damage if not addressed in time. Pipe damage can occur nearly anywhere within a building, with some areas more susceptible to damage than others. We have laid out the typical causes of pipe rupture and how to prevent them to avoid costly inconveniences.

Common Causes


Freezing water pipes are a common cause of pipe damage and the result of temperature drops in the environment. Running water can freeze as it is being transported within the pipes, thus freezing in place. The more water freezes, the greater amount of pressure your pipes experience. At a certain point, your pipes will be unable to manage the strain and will burst.


Steel pipes can burst merely from old age or exhaustive use. Corrosion is the product of too high a demand on your pipes over several years. Steel pipes naturally corrode and narrow over time, which makes them more susceptible to burst.

Tree Roots or Soil Shift

Environmental factors that can lead to pipe damage are tree root encroachment or soil shift. When surrounding trees expand their roots, they can apply pressure on your building’s pipes. Sometimes pipes are strong enough to derail root growth. If roots are too strong, however, their growth will continue to press against the pipes until they break.

When soil shifts, it creates an imbalance on your pipes’ strain. If the soil around your pipes shifts enough, you water pipes may burst. Construction is a typical cause for shifting soil. Be mindful of pipe location when pursuing any construction endeavors.


Clogs are produced from nearly anything that goes through your drains. Too much product can buildup in one location of your pipes, causing a clog. Pressure rises around this clogged area within the pipes. Eventually, too much stress can lead to cracking pipes.

Preventative Measures

There are measures you can take to prevent the typical causes of pipe rupture from happening in your building.

For Freezing

If it is below 20 degrees, leave one or two faucets slowly running to prevent freezing pipes. When water is moving, its risk of freezing is limited. You can also direct warm air towards areas where you know pipes are more likely to freeze, like the ones near outside walls or windows. Heat tape is an option for pipes that undergo extremely cold temperatures.

Additional Equipment

Pipe expansion joints are usually employed on construction sites to prevent pipes from rupturing. Pipe expansion joints serve many purposes that make them an invaluable addition to most industrial worksites. They reduce stress within the pipeline by absorbing structural changes in the pipe system.

Though many preventative measures can be applied by the homeowner, it is best to contact pipe system professionals to avoid exacerbating any existing pipe damage.

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