Water leaks are one of the most common issues that lead to disasters in a household. You can never truly find out if you have a water leak until it is too late. If left undetected, the leak can cause serious damages to your floors, ceilings, and walls. It is quite easy to recognize a broken pipe or a clogged drain that is visible to us, however, water leaks within our walls are quite difficult to pinpoint right away. However, there are some clues you could follow to detect a water leak within your walls. Let us explore some methods to avoid this disaster and fix it before it causes havoc in your beautiful home.
Some of the most common early warning signs of a water leak include:
When water drips down from a leaky or broken pipe within the wall, it creates a musty odor similar to wet cardboard. This is usually one of the first indicators of a water leak.
If you spot mold growth in unusual areas like your bedroom, living room, dining room, or basement, then it’s quite likely there is a water leak within the walls.
Peeling of paint/wallpaper
If you detect your wallpaper or paint separating or flaking off the wall, then there is a good chance there is a water leak. Oftentimes, rooms that are not used often will have these indicators go unnoticed.
Warped ceilings or floorings
If you notice bulges in your flooring or ceiling, that means the drywall has been wet from a water leak and is caving in. If you touch these spots, oftentimes it could be wet indicating a water leak.
Wet spots are key indicators however, it is difficult to pinpoint the leak from just examining the wet spot since water travels down different pipes. You will need to call a professional plumber to examine your water pipes.
When water leaks eventually dry up, they leave behind discoloured dry wall and it usually indicates a water leak.
If you hear plinking noise coming from inside your walls, then your suspicion might be right. It could potentially be a water leak and you may need a professional plumber to examine your walls to find the source.
How to find solid evidence of a water leak
Detecting water leaks can be tricky, however, with some investigative work, you can confirm your suspicion. The best evidence to confirm your suspicion is to test your home’s water meter. Follow these steps to conduct the test:
- Turn off all faucets and water appliances in the house
- Note down your current water usage on the water meter
- Do not use any water inside the house for at least 3 hours
- Check the usage on the meter
- Compare it with your previous usage and if there is an increase, that indicates there is a water leak in the house
Where to find your home’s water meter
The water meter is commonly located in the basement of your house. If your meter is outside, it will be encased in a concrete box with a cast iron lid that reads ‘’WATER’’. Use a screwdriver carefully to remove the lid.
How to read your water meter
Your water meter will either be an analog or a digital display.
An analog water meter will have a hand and the numbers clearly displayed. The water use will be measured in either gallons or cubic feet.
A digital water meter requires a source of light in order to work therefore, get a flashlight to see the numbers. The display switches back and forth between the rate of flow and the meter read. You need to record the meter read which is the total usage.
Temporary Repairs for Water Leaks
Even though water leaks should always be handled by a professional plumber, there are a few steps you can take to prevent permanent damage to your house. It is recommended to cut out the drywall where you located the leak, in order for you to reach the leaky pipe and temporarily seal it with a cloth. You can try to stop the leak with a temporary patch kit and set up fans to dry the area. If you are uncomfortable with cutting a hole and patching the leak yourself, feel free to call CJ Drain & Plumbing to help you with it. Let the professional take care of your permanent repairs and drywall restoration.
Reach out for Professional Help
After recognizing the problem and confirming your suspicion, your final task is to call a professional plumber to help you repair the leaky pipe. CJ Drain & Plumbing is always happy to help you pinpoint the leaks and fix them in a timely manner. Feel free to book an appointment with us and one of our plumbers will be on their way to your house.