A Guide To Finding Leaky Pipes

One of the most common plumbing problems is the leaky pipe. It is a good idea for every homeowner to be able to identify a potentially leaking pipe. To help you out in that respect, here is a guide on how to find a leaky pipe.

The hardest step of fixing a pipe can often be figuring out whether you actually have a leaky pipe or not. In obvious cases, you might find water leaking out from under your sink or gathering in strange places.

Other common warning signs include low water pressure, a lack of hot water, mold, damaged paint, or warped wood.

  • Low Water Pressure - If you have a leak in your pipes, then some of the water flow will exit through the leak rather than reaching the destination. The stronger the flow to the faucet and the bigger the leak, the more water that will exit through the hole. Therefore, it is important that you try not to use a faucet if you feel that it has low water pressure until you take a look at the pipes. If the water pressure seems extremely low, then the vast majority of the flow might be diverted through the leak, and that could result in some very expensive damage.
  • Lack of Hot Water - In some cases, you might have reduced water pressure for hot water, but not for the normal cold water stream. This can be difficult to notice, especially if you don't use the hot water too often or if you mix hot and cold water streams. Since hot water uses different pipes in some setups, a leak in a hot water line might not affect the cold water flow, even in the same faucet. 
  • Mold - One of the most dangerous byproducts of a leak is mold. Mold can release dangerous spores that are particularly irritating to asthmatics. If you do find mold, then you should make it a top priority to fix the leak and then clean the mold out. You don't necessarily want to clean the mold before the leak, because you want to eliminate conditions conducive to the growth of mold prior to safely removing it from your home.
  • Damaged Paint - If you have a leaky pipe in the wall that is difficult to immediately access, then your biggest warning sign will probably be bubbles or blisters in your paint and wallpaper. In these cases, you might need to remove part of your wall in order to access the leak in question.
  • Warped Wood - If the leak occurs beneath wood flooring, then warping of the wood is a pretty good indicator of leaks. When wood is exposed to extreme temperatures or moisture, it will change shape. This can be an aesthetic or tactile difference, depending on the severity of the warping and the conditions.
  • Contact a service like A Absolute Plumbing & Heating for more details.