4 Ways to Tell You Have a Plumbing Leak

plumbing leak

Leaks can be massive headaches, but luckily they’re not very shy and show themselves in advance – if you know how to spot them!

Plumbing issues cannot be overlooked by homeowners – even minor issues that could be brushed off as “easy fixes” can escalate to major problems down the line, and leaks are among the most common and bothersome of the bunch.

A small leak might not seem like much at first, but going unnoticed or unattended for too long can lead to massive headaches and costs in repair and materials. Luckily, there are lots of signs to watch for in order to prevent a small leak from becoming a big problem.

The first and most common way to detect a water leak: out of nowhere, your water bill skyrockets for no apparent reason
If you receive your water bill, and only then find there is something wrong, it means the leak is fairly well hidden. This means the problem could originate from an inaccessible pipe, or from somewhere out of sight. For example, toilet running or leaking, water heater leaking, or pipes behind walls, etc.

Keep an eye on the water meter! It can also indicate sudden changes that will help you prevent paying extra on water bills.

Patches of greener and taller grass, or pooling water
A subtle but common sign of a leaky pipe are odd patches of greener and taller grass in your yard. This could mean a pipe is leaking under it, resulting in that small patch receiving more water and growing faster than the rest.

A leaky pipe can burst, which could flood your yard and even cause damage to your home’s inner plumbing, so be sure to investigate as soon as you notice it.

Puddles or wet areas under your appliances
Dishwashers and washing machines are usually quite obvious when there’s a leaky pipe nearby, but do check under and inside the sink every once in a while for small puddles or damp spots. A small leak might go unnoticed for a long time, but by then, it will have spent a ton of unnecessary water.

Leaky faucets cause the same issue, but since they usually leak from the faucet, it’s hard to miss when it’s happening – be wary of dripping sounds even when the faucet is supposedly closed.

Water heaters are also prone to leaks. If you have one at home, check it every now and then, since it can be easy to miss.

burst pipe

Musty smell and damp spots
Leaky pipes inside walls are a little harder to notice until some damage is done. Be on the lookout for bulging wallpapers and paint, musty smell in a room where there’s no source of water, or even mold growth – all of these could be signs of leaky plumbing.

Water damage should not be underestimated. It severely damages paint and wallpapers, but in worst case scenarios, it can compromise your home’s walls and flooring, by warping, causing cracks, and mold that can spread throughout the house. Combine that with wooden furniture and carpet absorbing humidity and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster.

Take action as soon as possible
In most cases, leaks are not shy about showing themselves, so be sure to take action as soon as you see any signs. By doing so, you’ll be preventing further damage and saving yourself heaps of trouble!

As an added tip, if you’re not confident performing plumbing tasks, opt for calling a professional instead – attempting complex repairs by yourself can lead to further damage. Our office can recommend a plumber in the area if you are unsure of who to contact.