Leaks, blockages, and burst pipes can cause untold damage to your home. In northerly cities like Virginia Beach, VA, this can cause exponential levels of damage, especially in the winter. Not only can the cold cause snap freezes and exacerbate existing cracks and leaks, but it could compound the damage being done by dampness. This could leave you in a much worse position both financially and structurally.
What to Look for if You Suspect a Leak
Your home’s plumbing system is integral to health, comfort, and general hygiene. So, keeping it in good repair is essential. Thankfully, you don’t have to wait for a pipe to burst or major signs of creeping dampness to show in order to know there is a plumbing issue you need to address.
The most common signs of a plumbing leak in Virginia Beach are:
- High Water Bills: A number of things can increase your water bills, but one of the most common causes of unexplained rises in your water bill is an undetected leak somewhere in your plumbing system. If your faucets aren’t dripping, you take water-saving measures, and you still find your bills rising, it could be time to call a plumber.
- Mold or Mildew on Non-Shower Walls: Even the cleanest homes will find mold and mildew near a shower from time to time, but if you find it outside of the bathroom that is a sure sign that you have a leak somewhere in the area. Of course, if your home is poorly ventilated and you experience humidity for any reason, this can also cause mildew, but in these cases, clearing the area and ensuring better ventilation should fix the problem.
- Wet Spots on Your Walls or Ceiling: Damp spots, discoloration, and in more serious cases, bulges in the walls and ceilings of your home are signs that you have a serious or long-standing leak to deal with. If you see signs like these, it is also likely that you have some form of structural damage to contend with, too.
- Foundation Cracks: Houses settle over time, and as a result, small hairline cracks can form in ceilings and drywall. This is not necessarily anything to worry about. However, if you notice the sudden appearance of a larger crack or an existing crack suddenly becomes larger, this is a sure sign that a leaking pipe is undermining your home’s foundation. This is very serious and requires immediate attention.
- A Musty or Damp Smell in Your Home: Dampness has a unique and unpleasant smell, and when leaks are very small it is often this smell that gives them away first. If you notice a slightly sweet, musty smell in your home that doesn’t go away even after you throw open all the windows, it’s very likely there is a leak causing damage to your home.
Common Causes of Leaks in the Home
As well as causing damage and wasting water, leaks can be symptomatic of other plumbing problems.
Unfortunately, because it is impossible to see a plumbing system in its entirety, it can be hard to know where a problem originates. This is why regular maintenance is so key! The most common causes of household leaks in Virginia Beach include:
- Cracks caused by a snap freeze
- Broken seals
- Clogged drains
- Damaged pipe joints
- Excessively high water pressure
- Sewage line backups
- Loose water connectors
- Invading tree roots
Most of the common causes of household leaks have to do with the pressure inside a pipe. The sudden freezing of stationary water, high water pressure, clogs, and sewage backups all cause the pressure inside the pipe to rise.
As a result, water leaks through cracks and from weak points like joints. In most other cases the damage is caused by age and daily wear and tear. There is very little you can do to avoid this kind of damage other than following your maintenance schedule and taking care of your plumbing system as a whole. In fact, regular maintenance and the repair of small issues, like worn seals, before they snowball can go a long way toward warding off this kind of avoidable damage.
Leaks Cause Costly Damage
If you begin to suspect that you have a leak in your home, large or small, call your local plumber immediately. If you let even a small leak go, it can wreak havoc and end up costing you a pretty penny.
Structural damage to your home also could cost you thousands of dollars, so it really pays to have a professional on your side! Contact the expert team at A1 Sewer & Drain today for a free inspection and repair quote, as well as emergency service.