It is estimated that million litres of water is wasted every day in Sydney alone due to leaking water pipes. Much of this slips under the radar of unwary homeowners, but that wasted water slowly leads to wasted money and can cause serious damage to their homes.
Don’t fall victim to leaking water pipes. Learn to recognise the signs of a leaky pipe as early as possible by reading this article.
Higher water bills than usual
If your water bill goes up and you feel you haven’t been using more water than usual, this can be a sign that you have a leaky pipe. It often starts small, with the bill creeping up a little bit month by month, or you may suddenly get one much larger bill than usual.
However it happens, you shouldn’t ignore this anomaly. If you don’t get the leak fixed, you will feel the impact on your bank balance and may even find that your home gets damaged. Keep an eye on your water bills and look out for unexplained rises.
Musty smells in rooms
Sometimes a leak can be smelt before it is seen. If there is mould and mildew developing inside walls or under the floor, it will start to give off a distinctive odour.
It is not normal for a room to smell musty, even if the shower gets used 5 times a day. There is a leak, and it needs to be addressed. That smell only happens when water sits in one place for a long time and begins to stagnate.
Visible mould and mildew
A small amount of mould in the shower is not a cause for concern, even in the cleanest of homes. But if you’re seeing it build up in areas other than around the shower and/or bathtub, it could be a symptom of a leaky pipe.
Mould on walls, ceilings, floors and skirting boards in the bathroom, kitchen or anywhere else should not be ignored. The most likely cause is a leaky pipe.
Stains or damage on ceilings, floors and walls
These issues may start off very subtle, like a slight blemish on a white ceiling. You may even see the outline of water on a wall. These types of stains, even when small, are an indicator that something is not right.
The stain may be barely noticeable at first, but a leaky pipe needs to be addressed before more significant damage occurs. It could lead to a ceiling that sags and eventually collapses, bringing who-knows-what down with it. Alternatively, it could be that the wall becomes bendable, or an extra creaky floorboard sinks a little when you step on it.
These things are not normal. If they aren’t leaky pipes, they could be signs of damp from things like humidity or a leaking roof. In any case, you should not ignore them.
You might actually find moisture in areas outside your home or on the lawn. There may be puddles or mud outdoors when it hasn’t rained, or wet spots could even appear indoors.
Water will soon lead to mould and mildew, and even structural damage after a while. Follow those clues and get the leaky pipe repaired.
A running meter
If you shut off all water to your house and ensure no toilets or other appliances are working, your water meter should stop. It’s easier to test water this way than testing your electric meter because electricity is always being used unless there is a power outage.
If the water is deactivated and the meter keeps on ticking, there is probably a leak in your system.
Cracks in foundations
Homes naturally settle with time, leading to hairline cracks in ceilings and drywall. But a sudden crack, or one that has widened inexplicably, could mean a leaky pipe has compromised your home’s foundations.
This is extremely dangerous and must be addressed immediately.
What should I do?
Unfortunately, a leaky pipe can damage both your home and your bank balance significantly. The key is to spot the signs early on and get the pipe repaired before the damage gets severe.
The signs listed in this article are clear indicators that you have a problem. If they seem very minor, this is the perfect time to get them checked out. Whatever it costs now, it could save you a lot of trouble and expense that might come if you simply ignore the problem.
If you have any concerns that might be a leaky pipe, Same Day Trades right away and we’ll have someone come and take a look for you. Our expert plumbers will be able to identify the problem and locate it swiftly to nip it in the bud, no matter how severe it may be.