Sometimes expensive repairs to your home seem to come out of nowhere. When faced with these costs, you may have to change many of your plans and financial allocations. A slab leak is one of the most expensive and troublesome issues a homeowner can experience.
Advantage Plumbing & Sewer Co., the most reliable plumber in St. Charles, IL, knows the nightmare that slab leaks can create for homeowners. Fortunately, our team has complied this guide to slab leaks, how to detect them, and how to repair them. Read on to learn about the signs of a slab leak to prevent damage to your home’s foundation.
What Is a Slab Leak?
Home service and plumbing industry professionals refer to the concrete foundation below a house as a slab. Beneath the concrete slab is the home’s water line system. If there’s a shift in the slab foundation, it can cause a leak in the water line.
The foundation of a home may shift due to:
- Improper installation
- Improper placement
The water line system consists of two main areas: the pressure side and the drainage side. If there the pressure side has a leak, it can cause a lot of water damage. However, a repair is generally a quick job.
However, a leak on the drainage side of the water line can be much harder to detect. It can also cause severe damage to your home.
If you notice signs of a slab leak on your property, call a home service professional immediately. Waiting until the leak causes damage may lead to the foundation collapsing.
Signs of a Slab Leak
Because the water line sits under all that concrete, leaks in the system may not be noticeable for a long time. Knowing the signs of leaking under your foundation can help you spot issues early and repair them before they become more costly problems.
Look for these warning signs if you suspect your home has a slab leak:
1. Your Water Pressure Seems Lower
You may notice that your faucets and shower heads don’t produce water with the same force as they used to. When there’s a leak in your water line, the pressure in the pipes becomes weaker. As a result, they generate a lower output to your sinks and bathtubs.
If your water pressure seems lower than usual, call a plumbing professional to inspect your water lines.
2. Your Water Bill Suddenly Increases
Pay attention to your water bill, looking for sudden increases in cost and your water usage estimate. A leak in the water line will cause water to run constantly under your home, even when you’re not running any water. The bigger the leak, the more water spills into the foundation of your property.
This extra water output costs you extra money while also damaging your foundation. If your water bill is rising, get a plumber to check your water lines immediately.
3. You Smell Mold or Mildew at Home
If there’s a water leak under your house, the water will build up under your floors with nowhere to go. After a while, mold and mildew will begin to grow. Before long, you’ll likely smell a musty odor around your house.
Mold spores spread quickly and may soon infiltrate your home. They can also pose health hazards to you and your family. If left unchecked, widespread mold and mildew will mean replacing drywall, flooring, or other costly materials.
4. You Hear Water Running Under the Floor
When your water line under the slab leaks, water will run under your home even when not in use. If you suspect you have a slab leak, turn off anything that uses water in your house, such as your dishwasher and washing machine. If you can still hear water under the first floor of your home, there is a leak under the slab.
5. Your Flooring Is Suffering Water Damage
Severe water leaks that have gone without repair can damage your floors. Dark spots on your carpet or inexplicably wet parts of the carpet are signs of a slab leak. If you have linoleum, laminate, or hardwood flooring, look for signs of warping or buckling.
If you see such damage to your flooring, you have a severe slab leak that requires immediate action. Call a plumber right away.
6. Water Is Pooling on Your Floor or Outside Your Home
If you suspect you have a slab leak, take a walk around the outside of your house and look for standing water. If you find water pooling next to your house with no recent rainfall, this situation is a telltale sign of a slab leak.
You may also find water pooling on the floor inside your home with no clear explanation. This scenario also points to a significant water leak under the slab. If you notice these slab leak signs, call a professional immediately.
7. Your Floor Has Warm Spots
If areas of your floor seem warm or even hot when you walk on them, a slab leak may be to blame. When there’s a leak in the hot water lines under the house, the floor will feel noticeably warmer right above the leak. Those with laminate, linoleum, and hardwood floors will spot this issue more easily than those with carpeted flooring.
Use Your Water Meter
Your water meter will help you discover if your water line has a leak. Turn off all your water fixtures and any appliances connected to the water line. Watch your water meter for about 15 minutes to determine whether any water was flowing while your water line was off.
If you notice any signs of a slab leak, contact Advantage Plumbing & Sewer Co. in Elgin, IL. The last thing you want is a slab leak to become a more expensive and time-consuming problem. Click the link to learn whether flushable wipes are good or bad for plumbing, and call us at (847) 268-3553 for a consultation.