A Beginner’s Guide to Finding Hidden Water Leaks in Your House
When we think of water leakages, the images of a constantly flushing toilet or dripping from a kitchen sink faucet comes to mind. We perceive that given the sound and some common sense, we will be able to find the source of the leak. Unfortunately, this is hardly ever the case as leaks are difficult to spot for the untrained eye. Moreover, not all leaks occur in places with ready visibility, indeed many occur in places out of our eyes’ reach. For example, the actual pipe leak or water seepage could be happening behind a wall that is also hidden behind a large closet. In these cases, water leakages often carry on uninterrupted for a significant amount of time. If this article has got you alarmed, the read on to find out some simple steps you can take to check for hidden water leakages in your home.
As with most water leakages, you can first conduct basic checks for loosening tiles, peeling paint, musty smells and signs of mould growth. All of these are symptoms of on-going water erosion and decay, leading to structural damage in ever increasing amounts. However, as mentioned in our opening paragraph, in the case of hidden leaks, all of these signs may be obscured by furniture or furnishings. Therefore, if you hear trickling or dripping sounds at night but are unable to find any of these symptoms, a more comprehensive investigation may be needed.
You should start by checking for toilet leakages. This includes inspecting the grouting between tiles or for gaps appearing at the joints of wall tiles and floor tiles. In both cases, gaps allow for water to seep through to surfaces below or to areas adjacent to the initial leak. A possible contributing factor to this seepage is poor shower drainage that occurs when pipes are blocked by residue leading to increased water pressure within them. Over time, if this problem is not addressed, it is possible that pipes begin to leak. These leaks occur behind walls and possibly in obscured locations within the structure of your house, making them incredibly difficult to spot.
A third early symptom is vibration and water hammer. When water travels through pipes in your home, a vibration is created as kinetic energy is loss to the pipes. However, if you hear a bang or a thump when you turn off a pipe, then you likely have a case of water hammer. Water hammer is a percussive force that is caused by a sudden variation or fluctuation in water pressure within any pipe. This pressure can cause the pope to become loose over time and to start leaking.
If you find any of the abovementioned symptoms in your home’s water system, or if you suspect water seepage in your house but are unable to find its source, then it is time to engage a waterproofing company. Rather than wait and risk major structural damage, professionals should instead be immediately engaged to do a full check on your systems and to rectify any leaks found.