How to Find, Fix, and Avoid Leaky Pipes in Your Home

Owning a home can be fun, but when it comes to maintenance, things get hairy. On average, homeowners will spend 1% to 4% of their home’s value on maintenance every year. Much of that maintenance cost will go towards the subject of our post: piping/plumbing problems.

Problems with bad piping and other plumbing snags can be among the most headache-inducing for homeowners because pipes live in walls and under houses. That can make discovering problems and fixing them a pain.

To help you better deal with leaky pipes or whatever other plumbing issues come your way, our team has compiled this brief guide that touches on tips that’ll help you find, fix, and better secure your plumbing future.

Keep reading to learn more!

The Find

Finding leaky pipes and similar annoyances is the first step to fixing those problems. But how can one notice pipe issues when they’re out of sight?

Here are a few strategies savvy homeowners leverage to suss out some of the most common plumbing headaches.

Check Your Water Meter

To validate the possibility that there is a plumbing issue occurring in your home, head over to your water meter and note the figure it reads. After you’ve taken note, shut off the water in your home and leave it be for roughly 2 hours.

When you return to your meter after 2 hours have elapsed, do you notice a change in your meter’s readings? If you do, you almost certainly have leaky pipes to contend with.

Look for Mold

Now that you know you’re losing water to bad pipes, your next step is to find the source of the water loss. This process is a trying one and one you may not be able to tackle successfully without the help of a professional.

One of the easiest things we advise homeowners to do when sourcing leaks is to look for signs of mold in their homes. Mold flourishes in the presence of moisture and moisture is something that leaky pipes will create.

If you find a mold colony on a wall or flooring and think a pipe may exist nearby, you’ve likely found your leak.

Find Dead Patches of Grass

To find bad pipes that are running under your yard, look over your lawn and see if any dead patches of grass seem to be having more difficulty than surrounding patches. These patches may be suffering from overwatering occurring via a leaking pipe nearby.

If you cease watering your grass for a couple of days yet notice that the dead patch in your yard feels moist, leaks are almost certainly to blame.

Test Your Toilet

Toilets are among the most common areas where leaks occur. To make sure your toilet isn’t the cause of your problems, put a few drops of food coloring in its top bowl and walk away for 30 minutes or so. After, check your toilet’s bottom bowl to see if any of that food coloring has seeped in. If it has, you’re losing water.

The Fix

We’ve hit you with various strategies on how to find leaks. Now, let’s talk fixing!

Unfortunately, fixing a burst pipe or other plumbing issues isn’t something we can dive into specifics on as fixes will vary based on whatever unique issue you’re facing.

For example, leaking tub drains can be fixed with chalking. A leaking toilet might be able to find relief by installing a new flange riser.

The best, specific advice we can give you when it comes to fixing leaks is to call in a pro. When you type “find a plumber near me” into Google and hire a contractor that specializes in leak solutions, you can be sure that your job will get done right the first time and the amount you save by not losing water to leaks anymore should more than make up for the cost of hiring help over time.

The Future

You’ve found your leak and you’ve got it fixed. How can you now avoid dealing with leaks in the future?

Here are a handful of tips that are helpful to that end:

Check Your Appliances Regularly

Always stay mindful of your appliance conditions. If things like pools of water forming around your dishwasher or your shower’s water pressure seeming low crop up, take action.

The sooner you patch small problems, the less likely those problems will evolve.

Use Water Detection Devices

After patching up a leak, consider installing water detection devices in those trouble areas to help you stay aware of if the problem repeats itself. Water detection devices are small and will notify you if they sense moisture. With their help, you can tackle problems the moment they arise rather than letting them creep in scope.

Shut Off Water When You’re Away

If you have access to your home’s water valve, shut it off whenever you leave for extended periods of time. Keeping water cut off from your home when you’re not using it will help reduce the odds that problems will arise.

Talk to a professional before employing this strategy if you live in extreme cold. Sometimes water needs to stay flowing to avoid issues with freezing.

Leaky Pipes Drip Your Water and Your Money

We’ve seen people avoid dealing with their leaky pipes because they’re afraid of the costs involved in managing them. Believe us when we say though that nipping leaky pipes in the bud now will save you thousands more since water seepage can cause foundational issues, rotting, and so much more.

Make tackling your water issues a priority today to save yourself a boatload of money tomorrow!

For more insight on leaks and broader real estate/home topics, we welcome you to explore additional content on our blog.

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