Many people expect that if their water lines are leaking, they’ll be able to tell. In the movies and on TV, leaks are often depicted as high-pressure jets of water shooting from the ground or straight out of the kitchen sink faucet. Chances are high that you’ve also experienced a leak underneath a sink or a slow leak from a faucet, which are easy to spot as well.
However, your plumbing system is extensive. Pipes go behind walls, above your head, through crawlspaces, and underneath your property. That last point is what we’d like to talk about today. If your home sits on a concrete slab foundation, as many homes in our service area do, a slab leak is something that’s difficult to detect and can cost a whole lot to repair, especially if you don’t spot the signs early.
What’s a Slab Leak?
A slab leak is a water leak that occurs underneath the concrete slab foundation of a home. There are a couple of reasons this type of leak is given its own name to identify it. First, there’s the fact that it’s so difficult to access the pipes in this area. In addition, a slab leak can actually cause damage to the foundation of your home, another reason it’s important to be able to detect it.
What Causes Slab Leaks?
The source of a slab leak may be the hot or cold water lines running underneath your property. Standard corrosion contributes in many cases, although shifting soil from an earthquake or nearby construction could be the cause.
Hot water lines are actually more likely to corrode. This may be because of reactions forming between the soil around the pipes, the heat, and/or the condensation that could collect outside of the pipe.
Are There Signs of a Leak under My Property?
You might be able to spot a slab leak early by looking for these signs.
- The sound of rushing water coming from underneath the floor.
- Hot spots on the floor.
- Cracks in the walls and baseboards.
- Problems with water pressure.
- A lack of hot water or hot water pressure.
Will My Insurance Cover the Leak?
Unfortunately, insurance sometimes doesn’t cover a major slab leak. While it may seem, at first glance, that homeowners’ insurance covers your household leaks and water damage, there are often stipulations that state the damage must not have been preventable, and many companies consider slab leaks and water damage to be preventable. That’s why you must detect slab leaks early and call a plumber and your insurance company ASAP.
How Will It Be Repaired?
Sometimes, plumbers need to use jackhammers and other heavy equipment to drill down into the slab and access the piping. While this might be your only option, it could be possible to reroute piping around the leak or even to resolve the problem with trenchless technology. What’s most important is that you call in plumbing professionals with the right leak detection equipment and tools for repair.