A water leak is an insidious danger that you can’t afford to ignore. If you do, it won’t ignore you and will escalate into something bigger, more expensive, and possibly destructive.
Water leaks that aren’t immediately noticeable are the most dangerous ones. The longer they go undetected, the more damage they can cause before you realize something is wrong. Fortunately, there are water-leak detection strategies that you can apply to catch such issues early and nip them in the bud.
Signs of a Water Leak
As the leading leak detection Port Charlotte, FL experts, we have experience with various above and underground water leaks. If you spot any of these signs, we advise calling in an expert for water-leak detection services.
1. High Water Bill
Unless the number of people using water in your house increases, water bills typically stay within the same range, with maybe a $10 to $15 difference. If your water bill for a month suddenly spikes beyond the normal range, and you are sure there was no increase in your water use that month, there’s probably a leak somewhere.
Because water leaks only become more severe as time passes, your water bill will only keep getting higher each month the leak goes unnoticed. If you notice a sudden and inexplicable spike in your water bill, we recommend seeking plumbing leak-detection services as soon as possible.
2. Hearing but Not Seeing Running Water
Because most plumbing is hidden within walls and floors, a leak can go unseen for a long time. But it might not go unheard.
If you hear running water from your walls or floor, it could be water running through pipes. But it also could be a significant leak within the walls or floor that’s causing the noise. The source of the sound is more likely to be a leak if your pipes never made that much noise until now.
To verify that the noise is a leak and not just noisy plumbing, switch off all your water outlets, then take a reading of your water meter. Avoid using any running water for a couple of hours, then recheck your water meter.
If your reading shows that you used a significant amount of water during that time, then the sound of rushing water is likely a leak. At that point, it’s time to call a leak-detection expert to find the source of the leaking water.
3. Damp Floors, Ceilings, or Walls
If the floor of your home mysteriously keeps getting wet, even though there are no nearby taps or recent spills, chances are you have a substantial leak under your floor.
For you to be seeing spills, the leaking pipe under your floor would have released enough water for the liquid to build to the surface. Such a leak can go unnoticed for a long time if the pipe is somewhere under your yard. But if it’s somewhere within the house, the problem will become evident within a few days, especially if you have a wood or carpet floor.
The same problem can occur if a leaking pipe is in a wall or the ceiling. That particular portion of the wall or ceiling will mysteriously become damp, and the moist area will continue to expand. Water might even start to dribble out of the wall or ceiling.
The only solution is to find the source of the leak and fix it before it causes more extensive damage.
In addition to damaging your property, a leak also can lead to mold or mildew growing around the affected area. This mildew will lead to odors and can even prove dangerous to the health of people with allergies or a weak immune system.
For leaks that are under the foundation of your home, you will need professional slab leak detection services. If you ignore the problem for too long, it can prove harm, not just your home, but also the health of those living in your home.
4. Foul Odors
If you can’t see, feel, or hear a water leak, you’ll eventually smell it. The smell is similar to a wet carpet or dog. It could be worse if the leaking has been going on for weeks, or the leakage is from a sewage pipe.
The odor also is a warning sign that the moisture from the leakage has started to breed mold or mildew. If you choose to ignore the smell, you’ll see mold sprouting from the area of the leakage within a week or two. Then, you have a big problem because you’ll probably have to replace that portion of the wall, floor, and any other surfaces that have mold.
5. An Oasis in Your Lawn
Have you ever noticed that the grass or weeds around your garden hose or outside faucets seem to do better than the rest of your lawn? If so, it’s because the foliage around those areas gets more water than the rest of your yard.
Now, if a specific portion of your lawn is lusher and healthier than the rest, and there’s no clear water source nearby, there may be a leaking pipe under that portion of the lawn. You might want to ignore this problem because it’s outside. Don’t!
The leak in the pipe will only expand with time and increase your water bill. Also, plant roots can get into the pipe through the fissure and clog it. Another danger is that portion of your lawn becoming waterlogged.
The problem can be especially bad if your leaking pipe is a sewage pipe rather than a water pipe. It will become a breeding ground for bacteria and quickly become a health hazard.
Get a leak-detection professional to investigate the area as soon as possible to avoid things getting out of hand.
6. Cracks in the Wall
A small leak is a powerful and patient thing. Give it enough time, and it can break rock or the foundation of your home.
If a water leak continues dripping on one spot of your home’s foundation, it eventually will erode that spot enough for a crack to occur. The break in the foundation will lead to a shift in your home’s structure.
A foundation shift might be so minute that you won’t feel it. But your walls, which are fixed structures, will feel it and manifest cracks that indicate the weight of the building has shifted. If this continues, it can jeopardize the integrity of your entire home.
When you notice vertical or diagonal cracks in your walls, have a plumber verify that there’s no water damage to your foundation.
Have you noticed any of the symptoms listed above?
If so, every minute that goes by is another minute that your Florida home is being destroyed. Stop the problem in its tracks by contacting Protek Plumbing and Drain Specialists, the leak-detection, Punta Gorda, FL experts.
We’ll find the leak fast and provide a lasting solution that ensures the problem never resurfaces.