What is a slab leak? How do I know if I have one?

With time, age, weather, and normal use of your home comes a demand for maintenance to your home’s Plumbing. Some of which being as simple as Drain Cleaning or Leak Detection. However as most homeowners know, if there is little to no maintenance being done then there is a sure sign that your home will eventually develop a series of malfunctions and leaks within the sewage system. And with most homes being built on slabs of concrete, a simple leak could become a potential problem, not only to the safety of your home, but to your wallet as well. A Better Plumber & Air Conditioning is here to help inform you of just what a Slab Leak is, as well as potential signs indicating this type of diagnosis to your home’s plumbing. 

What is a Slab Leak?

A Slab Leak is a plumbing industry term used to describe a leak within the copper pipe system that runs beneath your home’s concrete foundation. When these types of leaks happen above the foundation, you may have heard them referred to as “Pinhole Leaks”. These similar types of leaks are commonly caused by an eventual corrosion of the copper lining within the pipes.

Leaks on the pressure side of the foundation can prove an easy fix with minimal deconstruction required, but left unattended they can cause significant damage. However, on the Drainage side of your home’s foundation could be another story. This part of your drainage system’s copper pipes are a bit more hidden, which could leave little signs that you actually in fact do have a Slab Leak. Not to mention the risk this type of Slab Leak would have to the integrity of your home’s foundation. To prevent this from happening, call A Better Plumber & Air Conditioning now to schedule a Leak Detection service. (301) 278-8786

Since these varieties of Slab Leaks are more or less hidden from homeowners, there is a higher chance that they will go undetected for longer periods of time. Which is not a good idea, not only will the structure of your home’s foundation be compromised. It could lead to an infestation of Termites, or produce a serious growth of Mold.

What Causes Slab Leaks?

Pre Damaged and Poor Installation

Not all homes are built equal, especially older homes. There are cases where Slab Leaks have been a result of a construction error when building the home’s foundation. While uncommon, it is not out of the question that the copper pipes were mishandled or banged up in the building process. If this is true then it would prove as a real issue for the proper function of your home’s plumbing.

Ground or Foundations Shifts

Did you just feel that? That may have just been an earthquake. There are many reasons for why your home’s foundation would shift. Over time there can be shifts and applied pressures to your homes foundation, and yep you guessed it. This would cause unwanted stress to the copper pipes. While this may not always break your pipes it could leak to a leak in the pipe or weaken its integrity.

Abrasion and Corrosion

Although your homes foundational copper pipes may be hiding underneath the concrete foundation. They may still be surrounded by Soil or Gravel and or Hard sediment materials. It’s not uncommon with natural shifts that these elements would scrape against, or begin to corrode the copper material of your water pipes.

Additional Signs

  • Spikes in your water bill
  • Sounds of running water when pipes aren’t in use
  • Moisture under floor
  • Inconsistent water meter reading
  • Standing water around the perimeter of your home
  • Low water pressure
  • Cracks in your baseboard or walls
  • Damp or warm floors
  • Mold / Moldy smell

We at A Better Plumber & Air Conditioning hope that with this information you are more confident to know whether or not you have a Slab Leak. Do not hesitate to call us with any questions or concerns regarding your home’s Plumbing. Just know that with proper Plumbing Maintenance and Leak Detection services. You can rest assured your home is prepared to withstand all of what life has to throw at it! (301) 278-8786