Water Leaks | How to Know You Have One | How to Fix
Is your water bill artificially high? Do you see random puddles of water in areas where they shouldn’t be? Do you hear sounds of running water? You may have a water leak. Water leaks can be tricky to find, but there are a few things you can do to try and locate the source of the leak.
Here are some other telltale signs that you might have a water leak:
- Unusually high water bill
- Sound of running water
- Wet or damp floors or walls
- Mold or mildew
- Foundation cracks
- Stains on ceilings or walls
- Overgrowth on one section of your lawn
Using the Flume Water Sensor to Detect Leaks
Another way to discover a water leak is by using a water flow sensor such as the Flume. The Flume water flow sensor attaches to your water meter and uses machine learning to know when there is a water leak. The Flume is sensitive enough to detect when your bathroom faucet is on or when you flush a toilet. You’ll be able to see in near real-time how much water each of those actions uses. You can program the Flume to alert you if water is running for longer than 15 minutes. 60% of new Flume users detected a water leak when they first turned on the monitor. The Flume costs between $100 and $200 (before your utility company rebate) and can be installed in about 10 minutes, DIY. There is no cutting – the sensor attaches to your current water sensor with a rubber strap.
Finding the Leak
Once you suspect that you have a water leak, here is the best way to start looking for it.
First, check all visible pipes for water damage or leaks. Look for any water on the floor near water heaters, water softeners, and water treatment systems. Also, look for any water stains on walls or ceilings. If you have a basement, check for water there as well.
Next, turn off all water appliances and fixtures in your home. This includes toilets, showers, faucets, water heaters, and clothes washers. Then, check your water meter to see if it is still running. If it is, that means water is still flowing somewhere in your home, and you likely have a water leak.
If you can’t find the water leak, you may need to call a professional plumber. They will have the right tools and equipment to find and fix water leaks, even if they are hidden underground or inside walls.
Fixing the Leak
Once you’ve found the water leak, it’s time to fix it. Small water leaks can often be fixed with a water-tight sealant, such as epoxy putty or plumber’s putty.
For larger water leaks, you may need to replace the damaged pipe. This is a job that is best left to a professional plumber. They will have the experience and expertise to fix your water leak quickly and efficiently.
Causes of Water Leaks
There are many different things that can cause water leaks. Some of the most common causes of water leaks include:
- Pipe Burst: A pipe burst is when a water pipe bursts and water starts gushing out. This can be caused by frozen pipes, high water pressure, or corrosion.
- Foundation Cracks: Foundation cracks can allow water to seep into your home, causing water leaks. Foundation cracks are often caused by settling, poor construction, or water damage.
- Toilet Leaks: A toilet leak can be caused by a faulty flapper valve or a cracked wax ring.
- Faucet Leaks: Faucet leaks are often caused by worn-out washers or O-rings.
Preventing Water Leaks
The best way to deal with water leaks is to prevent them from happening in the first place. Here are a few things you can do to reduce the risk of water leaks in your home:
- Check pipes and fixtures for water damage regularly.
- Repair any water damage promptly.
- Don’t ignore small drips or leaks. They can often be an indication of a bigger problem.
- Educate your family members about water conservation and the importance of not wasting water.
- Install water-saving fixtures, such as low-flow toilets and shower heads.
- Check for signs of water leaks regularly, such as water stains on walls or ceilings, wet floors or walls, or an overgrowth of one section of your lawn.
- Consider investing in a water flow sensor, such as the Flume water monitor. The Flume can help you detect water leaks quickly and efficiently.
The Bottom Line
Water leaks can be a big problem. They can cause water damage, wasted water, and increased water bills. Luckily, there are things you can do to prevent water leaks, such as checking pipes and fixtures for water damage regularly, repairing water damage promptly, and not ignoring small drips or leaks. You should also educate your family members about water conservation and the importance of not wasting water. If you suspect you have a water leak, the best thing to do is to call a professional plumber. They will have the experience and expertise to find and fix water leaks, even if they are hidden underground or inside walls. If you need help finding or fixing a water leak, make sure to call a professional plumber.