No leak is a good leak. Costing more than elevated water bills, hidden water leaks can damage ceilings and wood construction. Some are easy to spot but others not so much. If you suspect a water leak, follow these steps to find the source before it wrecks your finances and your home.
Ask the Meter
Before taking another step, let the water meter be your guide. First, cut off the water supply, turn off all appliances, and close the faucets. Next, find your water meter and watch it for a few hours. Does it move? If so, you certainly have a leak, since the meter shouldn’t move an inch with the water turned off. If the meter moves slowly (over hours), the leak could be small. If it moves faster, so does your leak. Also, if the meter starts moving immediately, the leak is likely severe. Fast or slow, however, the leak should be dealt with as soon as possible.
Check Outside Water Sources
Many homeowners assume an indoor leak is to blame and spend their time searching accordingly, but any water source can spring a leak, so remember to check sprinkler systems and outdoor faucets, as well. Plus, it helps to rule this area out, since unnoticed outdoor leaks can waste tons of water each month.
Pay Attention to Water Usage and Bills
Although a higher water bill is generally the first tip-off of a leak, some homeowners miss a step. Just because the bill goes up doesn’t mean you have a leak. Instead, look at the cost in accordance with usage. If usage stays level while the bill increases, something is off.
Consider other sources of higher water bills, also. For example, old appliances can use more water as can clogged pipes. If checking these areas yields no obvious signs, chances are high you have a leak. But it never hurts to be thorough.
Consider the Obvious
Though the previous causes are more difficult to detect, some sources sit in plain sight. So, while you scan water bills and check outdoor faucets, remember to look in obvious places, including shower doors, under cabinets, and toilet bases. Check the basement for pooling water or signs of mold, and don’t forget to look up. Signs of water damage on the ceiling mean one thing.
If you know where and what to search for, chances are high you can find a leak before it gets out of hand. Before water can damage the indoor and outdoor features of your home, remember to call for backup.The experts at Five Star Plumbing know how to help. Call us today at 361-400-0244 in Corpus Christi and 210-446-4570 in San Antonio.