When you spring a leak in the water lines running beneath your home’s foundation, it’s known as a slab leak. These kinds of plumbing leaks need to be addressed immediately, but how can you tell if you have a leak in a part of your house that you can’t see? To help you identify this issue, here are 10 signs that you have a slab leak:
1. Unusual Sounds
One of the first signs that you have a slab leak is the unexpected and constant sound of running water. If it doesn’t seem like the regular flow of water through your plumbing, you should start suspecting a slab leak.
Of course, the constant sound of running water could indicate a leak in other parts of your plumbing, so you should continue to look for slab leak signs to confirm your suspicions.
2. A Constantly-Running Water Heater
If the leak is located in the underwater pipes connected to your water heater, then the hot water that it produces will constantly be wasted. You may find that your water heater sounds like it’s constantly running. You may also find that you run out of hot water much quicker. These are both good indications of a slab leak.
3. A Spike in your Utility Bills
Plumbing leaks often lead to an increase in your water bills. If your water bill has spiked and you can’t identify the reason, it’s likely a plumbing leak.
To identify if this plumbing leak is in the pipes underneath your foundation, you should also look for other utility cost increases. If the leak is occuring in pipes around your water heater, the constant running of the water heater will cause your electricity bills to rise. It can also cause your gas usage to rise if your water heater runs on gas.
4. A Decrease in Water Pressure
Broken pipes also usually lead to decreased water pressure. If you find that the water pressure of one of your faucets or fixtures has dropped, it may be a sign of a slab leak. Decreased water pressure can also be caused by other factors, so again, you should look for other signs of a slab leak as well.
5. Warped Flooring and Damp Carpets
An obvious sign of a slab leak is flooring that’s affected by it. When slab leaks happen, it’s common for the water to seep through your foundation and into your flooring. If your carpets are damp or your hard floors are warped, you likely have a slab leak.
6. A Hot Floor
When the slab leak is in your hot water lines, that heat may transfer to your floors even if the water doesn’t. If you step on a section of flooring that’s unusually hot, you may have a slab leak.
7. Mold or Mildew
Eventually, trapped and stagnant water usually causes mold or mildew to form. You may start to notice that your house smells of mold or mildew when you have a slab leak, or you may even see the mold or mildew.
8. Cracking Drywall
A slab leak will usually soak downward as well as upward. In places such as Texas that have clay soil, this water will cause the soil to expand. This expansion will eventually begin to warp your house’s foundation, which will cause your drywall to crack. You should always get your foundation inspected immediately when you notice cracking drywall.
9. Doors that are Hard to Open or Close
Your doors and doorframes will also be affected by a slab leak. This may be due to the foundation warping, causing your doors and door frames to not sit right. It may also be due to warped floors that your doors begin to drag against.
10. Water Pooling in Unusual Places
Pooling water is another obvious sign of a slab leak. This water may form puddles in your basement or a first floor room. You may also find unusual puddles just outside your home, even though it hasn’t rained in a while. Indoor puddles, of course, are a lot more serious.
If you suspect that you have a slab leak, contact HEB Plumbing & Sprinkler immediately. Slab leaks are very serious and can be very damaging if they’re not addressed quickly. Kathlyn Smith of HEB Plumbing is an expert at locating and fixing these complicated leaks. Contact her today to schedule an appointment.