There is no such thing as a convenient or welcomed plumbing leak. But, we all assume when one happens that it can be easily located and repaired.
And for the most part, this is true. But what if that leak occurs under the foundation of your home? Does that change the story?
Well, yes. This is called a slab leak, and what makes them so ominous is the damage they cause—often before you’ve even realized you have a leak. That’s why we’re writing this post. We want to share some of the most common symptoms that alert homeowners to slab leaks, and what you can do about it if you encounter one.
Loss of Water Pressure
As with any type of leak, water pressure is going to go down. You’ll notice this by water coming from the faucets more slowly. Instead of a steady stream you may get barely a dribble.
Warm or Cold Spots on the Floor
Warm spots can be tricky—for instance if you’re a pet owner, you could easily brush it off as “well my pet was just lying there, so that’s why it’s warm.” (Yes, this assumption has been made by homeowners!)
Your dog or cat is probably not to blame, unfortunately. What’s probably the cause is that a leak has broken out in your hot water line, beneath your home’s foundation. This can happen with a cold water line too, but it’s typically more common with the hot water line first, as they experience corrosion faster.
If this does happen, it’s a good idea to have all your pipes checked underneath your home and determine your next steps from there—more on this below.
Wet Spots on the Lawn Near Your Home’s Foundation
Some underground leaks can happen just outside the home, but close enough to the perimeter of your home to be considered a slab leak. If this is the case, you’ll be able to feel a portion of the lawn that has become saturated with leaking water.
A note on this symptom—if its accompanied with a foul odor, you could very well be looking at a sewer line leak!
High Water Bills
Have you notices a sudden increase in your water bill? You can be almost certain you have a leak of some kind. This isn’t guaranteed to be a slab leak, but it is a sign you shouldn’t ignore. Unfortunately, the unusually high water bill is one of the most common ways a homeowner realizes they have a leak. If you do notice this, we’d encourage you to shut your water off, and then give us a call.
What to Do About Slab Leaks
Unfortunately, there’s really no way around this—fixing a slab leak will require our professional plumbers to bust through at least a small part of your flooring—most likely in your kitchen area and/or bathroom area.
The good news here is that with our professional grade tools such as video pipe inspection and listening tools, we can accurately locate the leak or leaks so we can do as minimal damage as possible.
From there, we can repair the leak. But, you may actually choose to have your piping re-routed so that you never have to worry about a slab leak again and/or have this portion of your plumbing system repiped so they’ll last much longer and you’ll be less likely to run into this problem again during your homeownership.