Tomorrow for the first time in about a week, the temperature will rise above freezing. When it does, many people will find they have water pipes that have burst, as several people have already experienced in the past few days.

Burst pipes can cause significant property damage and you’ll want to know how to turn off your water if you suffer a leak. The information below will help you know what to do if you run into issues with damaged lines in your home: 

  • Call the City of Richardson’s 24-hour Response Line at 972-744-4111 and someone will be dispatched to turn off the meter. This may take time as there are many calls currently coming in for this service.
  • If you are able, turn off the water meter yourself by following the steps below:
    • First, check to see if you have a private shut-off valve.  These are often located next the house.  For example, the private shut-off valve is often located in a box in the front flower bed. 
    • Due to the Winter Weather Emergency, if you do not have a private shut-off valve, you may turn off the shut-off valve located on your water meter. This is located in the meter box typically next to the curb in front of your house. 
    • You will need a special key to open the lid (in some cases) and a key for the meter shut-off valve.  Keys can be purchased at hardware stores but may be hard to find during this winter weather emergency. 
    • Another alternative is to use a crescent wrench. It will be difficult, but it is possible to use a crescent wrench to turn off the shut-valve.
    • Turn the valve to the off position by turning clockwise.
    • If all else fails, a neighbor or someone in your neighborhood will likely have a key. Check with your neighbors if you have no other place to turn for help.