Water may be necessary for life, but it can be a real nuisance when it ends up where it does not belong! Plumbing leaks can cost you thousands of dollars due to structural damage, especially if they go undetected for some time. Obviously you have a leak if you see water gushing from a cracked pipe, but you should also keep your eyes peeled for these more subtle signs of plumbing leaks so you can have them repaired before they get to that point.
Are little areas on your drywall beginning to swell or feel moist to the touch? If pipes run behind that section of drywall, there's a good chance one of them has developed a slow leak. If the moisture is present mostly along the top of the drywall, water may be trickling down from a leaky pipe that runs over top of that wall.
WATER RUNNING SOUNDS
Turn off all of the taps and water-using appliances in your home, and head into the basement. If you hear the sound of rushing water, that most likely means water is still running through your pipes because there is a leak somewhere.
Water rushing sounds are common with slab leaks, which are leaks in the main water pipes that run beneath your home. You could also have a leaky toilet. As the toilet keeps refilling, it draws water through the pipes even though nobody has flushed it recently.
The floors in your basement, especially, can be a good indicator of a leak. If they always seem moist or are developing mold, this is another sign of a slab leak. Try turning on a dehumidifier to remove the moisture. It is possible that the moisture is simply condensing onto the floor from the air. If this does not alleviate the issue, it's time to call your plumber.
HIGH WATER BILLS
If your water bill suddenly skyrockets, there are a few possible explanations, and most of them have to do with a leak somewhere in your plumbing system.
You might have a leaky toilet; a single leaky toilet can waste 6,000 gallons of water each month! You could have a slab leak, or perhaps a few leaky faucets are to blame. If you have an irrigation system, a single crack in your line could cause a lot of water wastage that goes undetected until you get your water bill.
WATER UNDER THE SINK
If your sink is housed in a vanity or sink cabinet, make sure you open the cabinet every once in a while to check for moisture. If you do see drops of water, turn the water on and watch closely where the drips are coming from. Is water leaking from the drain or from the water lines leading into the faucet? Perhaps the faucet itself is leaking. You can temporarily catch the drops in a cup or bowl, but don't delay getting the leak repaired as it will just grow larger over time.
A MUSTY SMELL
There are several possible causes of a musty smell around your home. You may just have humid air which is perpetuating the growth of mold and mildew on various surfaces. Maybe you left the windows open and water leaked in, leading to mold growth on the window sills. If you can't seem to find a good explanation for the mildew smell, have your plumber out to inspect your pipes. There's a good chance a tiny leak somewhere is perpetuating mold growth.
If you're worried you may have a leaking pipe, toilet, or plumbing fixture, contact the experts at Burton's Plumbing and Heating. We can track down the leak and make the necessary repairs to protect your home from any further water damage.