Plumbing break

I had my first split pipe a little over a week ago. The pipes froze for maybe the fifth time this year, on what might have been the coldest day of the year. I had put a lightbulb under the house, but it was no match for that cold and wind. I had shut off the water and opened the valves during the cold. After it warmed up, I put my space heater below the house to unthaw the lines (I had done this once before with fast results). It unthawed them, but I found one hot water line spraying out water.

I shut off the hot water side. Something made me think I had a leak in a cold water line as well. I think my toilet, which has a long delay for its valve to open after flushing, must have opened and when I heard the loud water rushing, I thought I had another leak. So I shut off all my water at my filter, which is inside the house.

For over a week I got my water from the filter: I had removed the filter part and was getting water from the hole that went through it. I boiled water for baths, filled jugs to use for teeth brushing, dish washing, and cooking. The water looked kinda junky, so I got my drinking water from my parents house.

Then one night I came home to find water dripping from the filter. When I went to shut it off, it fell apart and water was pouring out. I shut off my water at the main valve and had absolutely no water for a while. Luckily, the filter was not especially damaged, and I was able to just put it all back together. Evidently, the filter part holds a plastic plate against the valve part, preventing it from being pushed out. So I need to keep the filter on there.

Then I went underneath to fix the break. It was maybe a 1 inch break in the hot water line going to my kitchen. After some time of looking and crawling under my house, I determined that there was in fact no break in the cold water lines. I could have had cold running water that whole time. Without too much trouble, other than getting rather cold, I was able to cut out the old broken bit and put in a new bit with a junction. It held water just fine and finally I had all my water running again. I took a shower that night in celebration.

A few days later (yesterday) it got rather cold again. I put my space heater underneath the house just to make sure nothing froze up again. Unfortunately, a leak has developed, probably just at one of the soldered joints. I was worried about the one that had been there before, with how much heat I used to do some of the new joints. I’ll have to take care of that when the weather gets better. For now, I’m just shutting the valve till I need hot water.