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Why small water leaks lead to big homeowner problems

No one ever wants to find themselves in a situation that could have been avoidable, especially when that situation involves water leaks. While hindsight is 20/20, there are ways to spot minor issues before they become major, with just a little knowledge of prevention and identification. Here are several ways to spot small water leaks around your home, and the reasons why water leak repairs are better done before they get worse.

Water Leak Identification

A water leak worth investigating is not just one that’s an immediate gushing burst pipe or flooding situation. For instance, noticing brown spots forming in your living room ceiling, while the tile or flooring in your bathroom is loose could be a sign that there is an issue with your shower or tub or an issue with your toilet. Speaking of toilets, a good sign a toilet has an issue is if you hear the toilet running outside of being flushed, or if the handle jiggles, or if the toilet itself slightly rocks.

Issues are not limited to the bathroom, though. In the kitchen, if you notice the areas around the sink appear loose, or if you notice a moist, damp scent, these are two tell-tale signs that a leak is nearby. Running a dry tissue around pipe connections under the sink can help narrow down exactly where a potential leak is coming from, and more reliably than with a simple touch with your hand.

water meter

Leaks can find their way into basements as well. If you notice puddles forming around your water heater, this is a major sign of an imminent issue. Water heater tank leaks can progress quickly, going from a minor drip to a burst with gallons of water flooding in a matter of days. If you suspect a water tank leak, seek out a water leak repair immediately.

One quick method of water leak detection, for leaks that you’re unable to see, is by checking the water meter. Turn off all of the faucets in your home, and check the “leak indicator” (or flow indicator) — depending on the brand, the style will change, but it’s usually a small silver wheel or triangular shaped dial. If this dial is moving, and you’re sure the faucets aren’t running, there is a good chance that there is a leak somewhere in your system.

What Minor Leaks Can Cause

Leaving a minor leak alone can have some less-than-friendly results. First, with a leak, your water is never able to fully shut off. This means that any excess water running through a leak will immediately be reflected by a rise in your water bill.

Additionally, minor issues rarely stay minor. As leaks are left to their own devices, they usually become larger and more prominent, resulting in mold and mildew growth, water damage to your property, and potentially requiring extensive water main repair.

To avoid the worst a minor leak can unleash, consider scheduling an inspection with a professional plumber. Professionals are equipped with special cameras that can scope water lines, as well as specialized water leak detection equipment. Additionally, experts are able to run specialized tests, such as water pressure tests, to help alleviate issues before they balloon into larger water leak repairs.

If you suspect a minor leak in your home, if you need a professional for an inspection, or if you just have a general question about a potential noise, smell, or sight, contact the experts at Duane Blanton Plumbing at (815) 781-2567, or online through our online scheduling portal, and we’ll be able to help out before a leak gets out of hand.

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