There are few home disasters that can be quite as devastating as water damage- both to the condition of your home and your wallet.
Something as simple as a dripping faucet can increase your water bill by an exorbitant amount, and heaven forbid you have a full-blown busted pipe that destroys your flooring or causes ruination to the foundation of your home.
The positive aspect of a water leak (yes, there can be a silver lining to home repair!) is that unlike other sinister accidents that are much harder to notice, such as carbon dioxide leak, water damage is easily noticed and thus can be corrected in a timely manner.
You will have far less damages to deal with if you put a stop to the leak and repair the faulty pipe or equipment in a timely manner.
Signs Your Home Has a Leak:
The tell-tale signs of leaks are hard to miss, which is great considering the damage water can do in just a few days, or hours, time. Being aware of a few things around your home will go a long way in nipping any leaks in the bud.
Pay close attention to the following signs that could mean something in your home is leaking:
– An increase in your water bills, especially the cost jumps drastically from the previous month
– Muddy patches in the yard around your home
– Soft or sagging floors
– A persistent musty smell in your home
– Visible mold, especially in the rooms of your home that use water
– Stained ceiling or walls, especially when stains reappear after painting
– Misshapen walls
– Bubbles forming underneath wall paint or wallpaper
These signs could all mean a leak that will continue to damage your home until dealt with. Be especially wary of leaks and signs of water damage in your kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry room as they use the most water and appliances. Leaky or busted pipes are most often found in basements or under the foundation of your home.
No one wants to pay for damages caused by water, but your finances may not be the only victim of unrepaired leaks. Your health, and the health of your family, can fall victim to water damage as well.
– Mold: Stagnant water, or continually damp walls and floors, lead to mold growth in your home. Mold doesn’t just smell bad; it is hazardous to your health in a variety of ways- some merely annoying and others possibly fatal. Mold can irritate existing allergies or cause a person to develop new allergies over time. Prolonged exposure to mold has been known to cause headaches, dizziness, and, most dangerously, respiratory issues. The very young and very old are especially susceptible to mold-related illnesses.
– Bacteria: A leak that stems from a sewer pipe can easily bring harmful bacteria into your home. Even worse, your water supply can become infected, making it unsafe to drink or bathe in. A sewer leak is no laughing matter, and the health concerns far outweigh the financial ones.
Diagnosing the Problem:
So you’ve noticed the telltale signs of a leak in your home. Maybe there is a persistent muddy patch in your lawn, or the wall in your living room has started to bubble and warp.
You know there is an issue, but you can’t seem to find it on your own, as the leaking pipe or faucet isn’t visible to the naked eye. At this point, it’s probably time to call a plumber, as they have several excellent methods of hunting down that pesky leak.
– Some plumbers detect leaks by filling your pipes with hydrogen. They have special machines that track the flow of the gas, and can pinpoint the direct location of the leak.
– Similar to an endoscopy in humans, a camera can be inserted into pipes in your home in order to search for a leak.
– Waves from a radar machine can be used to hunt for an underground leak in the foundation of your home. A geophone is a device that amplifies sounds from underground and can be used to listen for dripping or running water, indicating a leak.
Regardless of how a leak is detected, it is imperative that it is corrected in timely manner in order to best protect your health, home, and finances. Don’t let signs of leaking water go undiagnosed, as you will end up in a far worse situation in the long run.
If you have any leaks at home and you need assistance, please give us a call at (805) 928-2511 — we’re available 24/7 for all your plumbing needs.