That's what the situation was this morning, when my darling started pounding on my bathroom door this morning and saying I had to get out of the shower RIGHT NOW. I did, being the ever obedient person I am, and went out to discover from her that one of the pipes in the laundry room had developed a leak. Actually, that understates it. It had developed a crack in the pressure valve that steps down the water pressure from the street water connection to a pressure that you can take a shower in and not have to worry about having your skin flayed off. So, there was a small hole in the pipe but the thin stream of water coming out was shooting extremely far across the room and soaking everything in its path. Not good.
Thinking quickly, I tried to ameliorate the problem somewhat by turning off the water to the rest of the house. The only problem with that plan was that the pressure valve was “before” that shutoff and the water kept spurting. I tried the other shutoff valve, but that one would not move.
At that point, I decided trying to fix the problem in an underdressed condition helped nothing, so I took a couple of minutes to a) get dressed, b) let work know I was going to be a little late and c) figure out what the heck I was going to do.
I wound up Rube Goldbergering a way to at least keep the water spraying contained. I hung a plastic Target bag's handle over the shutoff valve above the leak, then manuvered the bag so that all the spray went into the bag. Next, I fastened the other side of the bag to the drywall with a small nail. Then, after figuring some heights and angles, I put the laundry room trash can below the leak, put a board on top of it to act as a shelf, placed our large capacity mop bucket on the shelf and poked a hole in the bottom of the Target bag. Success! All the water was now going into the Target bag, and all the water in the Target bag was now draining into the bucket. I needed to empty the bucket every hour or so, but that was an hour I could now use to call the plumber. I struck out with the first plumber, as nobody was available, but they gave me a couple of other numbers to try instead, and the second plumber was out by 9:30. They had the problem resolved in about an hour and I now have a much stronger pressure valve installed.