How to Repair a Leak in PVC Pipe Plumbing

Updated February 21, 2017

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipe is a popular material used in residential plumbing and commercial projects. Durable PVC pipe is frequently used for plumbing, sewer lines, irrigation systems and a number of other projects. Although it's durable, PVC pipe can sometimes develop leaks from extreme temperature changes or damage caused by construction equipment. You can repair a leak in your PVC pipe within an hour or two, and save the cost of a plumber.

Locate the leak in your PVC pipe. Dry the pipe with a clean rag and determine if the leak is located in a straight portion of pipe, or a joint or elbow.

Shut off your home's main water valve with a crescent wrench. Locate the closest water spigot to the leaking pipe and open the valve to allow the remaining water to drain out.

Clear away any debris from around the pipe. Cut the damaged PVC pipe off with a hacksaw--about 3 to 4 inches on both sides of the leak. Remove the damaged section of piping.

Measure the distance between the remaining pipes to determine the size of the replacement pipe. Cut the new pipe with a hacksaw.

Rub a piece of emery cloth around the ends of the existing pipes. Roughing up the ends a bit will allow the pipe sealant to hold better. Repeat with the ends of the new pipe.

Rub emery cloth on the inside edges of two PVC pipe couplings. Spread a layer of pipe sealant around the outer edge of one of the existing pipes and around the inside of one of the pipe couplings.

Slide the pipe coupling over the existing pipe until it is about halfway through the coupler. Repeat this process on the other side.

Spread a layer of pipe sealant around both ends of the new PVC pipe and insert the pipe into the couplings. Slide the new pipe into each end of the couplings until they meet the old pipes in the centre of the couplings.

Allow the pipe sealant to dry for about an hour. Turn the main water valve back on. Check the PVC pipe connections to verify that there are no leaks.


Take a section of the old PVC pipe that you cut off to the hardware store to match with the new pipe and couplings.


PVC pipe sealant emits toxic fumes. Be careful when working with this compound.

Things You'll Need

  • Rag
  • Crescent wrench
  • Hacksaw
  • Tape measure
  • Emery cloth
  • 2 PVC pipe couplings
  • PVC pipe
  • PVC pipe sealant
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About the Author

Carl Pruit has been a freelance writer since 2005, specializing in service journalism and travel. His work has appeared on various websites. Born and raised in California, Pruit attended Contra Costa Community College in San Pablo, Calif. and received an associate degree in the administration of justice.