Do you suspect you’ve got a water leak somewhere in your home?
You don’t always hear the steady drip, drip, drip of a leaking tap in a kitchen or bathroom sink. Sometimes it’s much harder to detect.
While plumbers have the experience to find water leaks, this is something you can try to do yourself before calling a professional licensed plumber.
How to Know You’ve Got a Water Leak
An undetected leak can lose you up to about 480 litres (127 gallons) of water per day.
Not only are you paying for water you’re not using, the leaking water can be doing serious damage to your home.
Here are some tell-tale signs of a water leak somewhere in your system:
● An increase to water bills – have your water bills been increasing with no real explanation?
● Water meter – monitoring your home’s water meter is a definitive way to know you’ve got a leak.
● Wet spots – these can be hard to detect but if you’ve noticed wet spots on the floor, walls or ceiling, these could be signs of leaking pipes or ceiling. Don’t forget to check for patches of water outside as well – you may have an underground leak.
● Water stains – after a wet patch has dried up you might notice a stain on your ceiling or wall.
● Mould and mildew growth – by the time you’ve got stains you might notice a musty smell. Some types of mould can start growing within a day. Mould is potentially dangerous because it can cause respiratory problems.
● Peeling paint – this is a sign that water is leaking somewhere and may have been leaking for some time. Sometimes it peels away in a long strip and other times it blisters and cracks.
● Noisy plumbing – if you hear a constant dripping noise or your toilet cistern is permanently refilling, you’ve probably got a leak.
● Sagging ceiling – a sagging ceiling happens when there’s a considerable leak between floors. This can develop gradually over time with a slow leak, or quickly with something like an overflowing bath or sink.
How Can I Track Down a Leak?
There are a number of ways to track down water leaks.
Monitoring your water meter will tell you definitively if you’ve got a leak, but how do you find it?
If there is a patch in your lawn which is much greener and grows faster than other areas, it might indicate a spot where an underground water line is leaking.
If you suspect the leak is inside the house, you’ll need to check for puddles of water in cabinets under the kitchen, bathroom and laundry sinks. You’ll also need to check the floor under tubs, toilets, the hot water system, dishwasher, washing machine and shower floors.
Remember, not all leaks are a plumbing issue. Water can be coming in through your roof.
Either way, if leaks go unnoticed they will be costly in water bills and damage to your home. It’s a problem that should be addressed immediately.