Fix a Leak: How to Temporarily Fix a Leaking Pipe

Posted by: on March 17th, 2012 | 2 Comments

What do you do before you call a plumber?

Some plumbing leaks are a nuisance. A dripping faucet might keep you awake at night, and it’s wasting water, but it’s not an emergency. Other leaks, though, from cracked or damaged pipe can be a potential catastrophe and demand immediate attention, even before you call a plumber. Here’s how to temporarily fix a leaking pipe.

The first thing to do is turn off your main water valve, which will be near your water meter. Then open a faucet to relieve the pressure inside the pipes. That will stop water from continuing drip out of the pipe as you fix it.

The easiest way to temporarily fix a leaking pipe is to use plumbing epoxy. It usually comes in a putty form, almost like modeling clay. Pinch off enough of the epoxy to cover the leaky spot on the pipe. You’ll probably have to knead the epoxy a bit first to loosen it up. Then, following the manufacturer’s instructions, mold the epoxy around the leak or the pipe fitting where the water is leaking.

Let the epoxy set for a few minutes to harden. Once that’s happened, turn the water back on and check your repair.

In many cases, you’ll find a little water still making it through the patch you’ve just put in. In that case, turn off the water again and add a little more epoxy to the patch–molding it, and letting it set a few minutes as before.

Using plumbing epoxy in this way is quite effective, but don’t be complacent. You may feel like you’ve solved the problem, and there’s no need for a permanent fix to the leak. The patch should be OK for at least a few days, and it could even stretch into weeks or months. But that will always be a weak spot in your plumbing, and you’re asking for trouble if you expect the epoxy to be effective long term.

Get more detailed instructions on emergency quick fixes for leaking pipes in our Home Depot Project Guides.

Photo (cc) Lisa Clarke


Grill It: How Hot Does a Grill Really Need to Get?

Posted by: on March 17th, 2012 | Make A Comment
grill full of glowing charcoal

Photo: Tomhalvar via Wikimedia Commons



A:  Different types of meats are suited to different heat levels. If you’ll want to sear a steak, you’ll need a grill that can climb up to 650 degrees. Foods like burgers, veggies and fish require temperatures up to 450 degrees to be cooked properly.

Even after buying the right grill, you’ll need to know when it’s hot enough to throw on the food. You can try this old grill trick, as told to Esquire magazine: If you are cooking steaks, burgers or the like, hold your hand about three inches above the grate and start counting “one Mississippi, two Mississippi,” etc. If you get to two or three before you pull away, the grill is hot enough for those items that can take a good sear.

Grilling Tips is for all you grill fanatics out there. Whether you swear by propane, charcoal or gas, our BBQ tips have you covered. If you’re in need of an upgrade – shop Grills at

Fix A Leak: Test Your Toilet For Leaks

Posted by: on March 16th, 2012 | One Comment


Fix A Leak: Silent Toilet Leaks

Unless your toilet is leaking water onto the floor, you may not even realize something could be wrong. Unfortunately, many toilets have what’s called a ‘silent leak,’ or a leak that isn’t detected by a running water sound coming from a toilet not in use. Luckily, there’s an easy way to test your toilet for leaks – just head to the pantry for some food coloring. Food coloring in hand, take the tank lid off.

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Unclogging a Kitchen Sink: Could It be the Garbage Disposal?

Posted by: on March 16th, 2012 | Make A Comment

Could it be the garbage disposal?

Kitchen sink clogged for no reason? Have you tried to unclog your kitchen sink with a plunger, pipe snake or drain solutions? If baking soda, liquid pipe snake or a plunger aren’t working, the culprit may be your garbage disposal.

Home Depot community member Leandrohailey brought such a problem to The Home Depot’s online Forums in his thread, “How do you get kitchen sink to drain without always having to turn on the garbage disposal?“ This community member recently installed a new garbage disposal and now the kitchen sink won’t drain without the garbage disposal being turned on. The dishwasher then overflows into the kitchen sink.

“I don’t feel like standing at the sink anymore and turning on the disposal every time we need to wash dishes,” Leandrohailey writes.

Forums associate HDAnswerman felt Leandrohailey’s pain and chimed in with a few possible solutions to this problem unclogging a kitchen sink.

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Places: The Living Roof

Posted by: on March 15th, 2012 | Make A Comment
Enric Ruiz Villa Bio living roof image

Image of Enric Ruiz Villa Bio living roof via The Coolist


You are probably familiar with container, raised bed and vertical gardening trends made popular over the last few years; and, you’ve likely heard about the growing number of community gardens sprouting up in cities all over as well. But, what about the idea of a living roof?

If this sounds like wild thinking, you’re on the right track. The living roof, also known as a green roof, is basically a rooftop partially or completely covered by native plants, wild flowers and other vegetation. While the idea has been around for centuries, adapted from the use of grass and sod roofs in Scandinavia, living roofs are now topping buildings, homes, garages, sheds and a wide variety of structures as the environmental and aesthetic benefits of green roofs are better understood.

Don’t think you need to have access to a tricked-out, split level roof like the one shown above that we spotted on The Coolist to start create a living roofs. All you really need is soil, seed, sunlight and little water.

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How To Replace A Bath Faucet

Posted by: on March 15th, 2012 | Make A Comment

Leaky bath faucets are a common problem that over time can waste huge amounts of water. Fortunately, there’s a very easy DIY solution that may also serve as a much needed bathroom resurfacing.

This easy-to-follow video breaks down everything you need to know to replace a bath faucet. You’ll learn about the two basic faucet types and how to select the right one for your bathroom.

The video will also walk you through how to remove your existing faucet, install a new one and reconnect the water supply with the help of a few simple tools, including an adjustable wrench, a basin wrench, a putty knife and a screw driver.

Visit for all of your plumbing and full bathroom remodeling needs. You can also get expert DIY advice from our associates on the How-To Community Forum.

Go ahead, pick out your new bathroom faucet now.

See more DIY and home improvement videos here on the Home Depot blog and on The Home Depot’s YouTube channel.

We Have 7 Out of the Top 10 Lawn Mowers

Posted by: on March 14th, 2012 | 17 Comments

Yard yahoos, unite: The Home Depot carries seven out of 10 top-rated walk-behind mowers on the market, as rated by an independent testing lab. And we are the exclusive carrier of three of the top brands among large retailers.

What’s so great about our lawn mowers? In addition to hitting the high notes in the ratings, our customers have rave reviews. Here are three of the top-rated lawn mowers, all exclusively at The Home Depot—and why they rock.



This Home Depot-exclusive Honda lawn mower, which made the top 10, got high marks because of its blade technology, which results in better mulching, increased bag capacity and tiny grass clippings that add nutrients to the lawn, and for its Nexite Deck Design. And the mower mavens in the trenches are definitely impressed.







“I bought a new mower because my previous one was not equipped with a mulching blade. This new model gives me all of the options of bagging, partially bagging or mulching. Also gives me more speed adjustments than my previous model. Fabulous.”

–bls1025 on


“After doing a lot of research, this is the best mower you can buy. It is very simple to operate and I even like the longer reach for getting under several juniper trees. The speed selection, ease of changing between bagging and mulching and excellent leaf removal make this mower a great value.”

–Frohicky on

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Fix A Leak: The True Cost Of A Leak

Posted by: on March 13th, 2012 | Make A Comment
Fix-a-Leak Graphic image

Designed by Laura Sullivan


The constant drip from a leaky faucet is not just annoying; it’s also a waste of a precious natural resource and drain on your wallet. Even the smallest leak wastes several gallons per day, which is a pretty good reason why it should not be ignored. When you fix a leak, even a seemingly small leak you’ll save money and you’ll help protect the environment. The fix is usually simple and inexpensive, too.

Explore our complete selection of Water Sense® faucets, toilets and showerheads to find water-efficient products that can also help your wallet and the environment.

Make a big difference in your home and learn more about energy efficiency, conservation and saving at Eco Options.

See how shrinking your “water footprint” can help reduce the increasing global pressure on fresh water resources at

And please feel free to download our Fix a Leak infographic and share it. PC users, right click the image, and click “save as”.


How To Fix A Leaky Toilet

Posted by: on March 13th, 2012 | Make A Comment

The sound of running water in your toilet is more than just a little annoying. It’s also the sound of money going down the drain. If you do have a leaky toilet, chances are that it only requires a quick fix that you can easily take care of yourself without the need of a new toilet installation.

Watch this video and learn how to detect the location of a toilet leak and what to do once you find it. If an old flapper is the problem, it takes just a few seconds to replace this device that seals the bowl opening and allows the toilet to flush. If not, the video suggests the clever trick of using red dye to find the source of any leak along the supply line or the base of the tank. There are also handy instructions on how to fix any leaks around the fill valve tank bolt or the tank gasket. For all of your plumbing needs, including toilet installation instructions, be sure to visit where you can also get DIY help from our expert associates on the How-To Community Forum.

See more DIY and home improvement videos here on the Home Depot blog and on The Home Depot’s YouTube channel.

Inspired: Green Gems for Every Space

Posted by: on March 13th, 2012 | Make A Comment


Illustration: Laura Sullivan





















In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, we’ve gathered some emerald items from for around the house.

Top: The bathroom (from left to right)

We’re smitten with the natural green hues in these Solistone Freeform Tavoos Mosaic Tiles, with their smooth, high-sheen finish. The tiles, which are mounted on a wire mesh, will add serene and calm to a bath or sink area.

Customers have raved about this Vigo Above Counter Round Tempered-Glass Vessel Sink, praising its design, size and deep green color, which changes as light fills the bathroom.

This Burpee Grow Some Luck Garden is the ultimate St. Paddy’s gift: The ceramic pot is shaped like a clover and you’ll find a clover seed packet inside along with growing instructions. It’s just over 5 inches, so it makes a nice tabletop piece.

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