Common Water Leaks In Your Home
Water is an essential utility that we use every day. From cooking, bathing, washing dishes and clothes, to sanitary hygiene and heating, it’s a commodity that we tend to take for granted; until something goes wrong.
A burst pipe can be devastating and cause serious damage to your property. However, no matter how distressing, it’s easy to recognise where the problem lies. A slow leak, on the other hand, can be even more destructive, causing immense amount of damage over a period of time. Often, you’ll only realise you have a slow leak once when the damage is already done. And not just structural damage either; damp and mould build-up poses a serious health risk, especially if breathed in over a long period of time.
Here’s a look at some of the most common causes of a water leak in your home.
The following signs indicate you may have a hidden, slow water leak:
- Warped and swollen plasterboard
- Persistant mould
- Stained, bubbling and peeling wallpaper
- Low water pressure
- Higher than average water usage and utility bills
Check for signs of water pooling under and around your dishwasher and washing machine. The feed pipes may not be fitted properly with the right tension. Other signs include salt and water marks on the surrounding walls and the neighbouring wall in the adjacent room and warped laminate or wooden flooring directly under the appliances.
During the winter freezing water in the pipes can cause them to expand and eventually burst. Keep the heating on low and regularly run the cold water taps to prevent water in the pipes from freezing. It may also be necessary to call a plumber to completely drain your water system.
This is noticeable in the autumn when you first turn your heating back on. It can be caused by a worn out valve or, in older radiators, corrosion and age. If the leak is due to age, a plumber will need to drain your central heating system before replacing your radiator.
If the pressure gauge is too high, water will drip out from the outlet pipe. The valves may also be damaged or the fittings that feed into the boiler may be loose.
Metal in older boilers expands and contracts over time which can result in stress cracks. The boiler will need to be replaced with a modern more energy efficient model.