A plumbing leak in your home or business can cause a whole slew of issues if it’s not caught early and repaired. However, some leaks are easier to spot than others. If the plumbing leak occurs in a hidden pipe or valve, you might not even catch it until it creates a more significant problem that will require extensive repairs. To help you avoid this, here are six quick and easy ways to tell if you have a plumbing leak.
1. Mold and Mildew
When moisture collects in the walls, ceilings, floors, or other parts of your home or business, it’s a breeding ground for mold and mildew to develop. Mold generally appears as a fuzzy or slimy discoloration that can start as spots but quickly grow to cover whole sections in a room. Mildew has a more powdery texture and is typically white or gray in color. Because of the heat and dry air in Las Vegas, it’s rare for mold or mildew to build up as a result of weather, so it usually points to a faulty water source.
Both mold and mildew can accumulate as a result of a plumbing leak going unchecked. If you start to notice this buildup, especially if it’s getting progressively worse very quickly, it’s a clear sign you may have a plumbing leak. You’ll want to locate the leak quickly and allow the area to dry completely as soon as possible as some molds can be dangerous when inhaled.
2. Musty Smells
Even if you can’t visually detect mold or mildew, there’s often a musty, earthy, or damp smell associated with them. If the mold is growing on the inside of a wall or under the carpet or flooring, it is generally easier to miss. Make sure you pay attention to lingering musty smells in your home or office. Don’t be so quick to dismiss them by lighting a candle or using air fresheners. This unpleasant odor could be a sign that you have a plumbing leak somewhere in the vicinity.
Try to pinpoint where the smell is coming from, then identify whether or not there are pipes or plumbing fixtures in that immediate area. If the leak is not apparent right away, you can always call a professional Las Vegas plumber for thorough leak detection services.
3. Damage to Walls or Floors
Standing water can cause property damage fairly quickly in areas that are not designed for water exposure. Generally, walls and floors will take the brunt of the damage when there is a pesky plumbing leak present. Some damage to look for includes:
- Discoloration to walls or floors
- Unnatural warping or swelling
- Bubbling or cracking paint
- Buckled flooring
- Rotted wood or insulation
Water damage is not always extensive and apparent right away. When there is a slow leak, it could happen much more gradually. Keep an eye out for any damage and call your Las Vegas plumber for a consultation if you suspect a water leak could be the culprit.
4. Sounds of Running Water
Hearing sounds of running water might seem like an obvious sign of a leak, but it’s also one of the easiest to overlook. With the noise of everyday life filling our homes and businesses, you might not hear or notice random running water until other signs of a leak start to show. If you happen to hear running water but are unsure of the source, you may have a leaking plumbing system.
Even if the leak sounds like it could be very minimal, it’s always best to get a professional opinion. If the water is slowly seeping into the walls or floors, you’ll want to avoid toxic mold buildup or permanent damage to the structure.
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5. Increase in Your Water Bill
Another sign to look out for is an unexplained increase in your water bill. If you haven’t changed your water consumption habits but are seeing a noticeably higher water bill, this is a common sign of a plumbing leak.
Keep in mind that seasonal increases in water usage are quite normal, though. For example, you may use more water in the summer because the kids are home from school, or you need to refill the pool. Maybe you have family staying with you over the holidays, so your home’s water consumption is a little higher in December. However, if there is a dramatic increase in your bill without a clear explanation, it may be time to call a plumber.
6. Unusual Plant and Grass Growth
Have you noticed a sudden swelling of weeds, grass, or shrubs growing around your home? When there is an unusual increase in plant life in your yard or just outside the walls of your house, an excess in water could be the reason.
If the plant growth is happening in your front yard, it is cause for concern because it could be your main water line leaking. Inspect the area to see if the soil is soggy or if you can find where the water is seeping up through the ground. In any case, you shouldn’t ignore the issue because it could quickly turn into a bigger problem.
When to Call a Professional Las Vegas Plumber
If you’ve noticed one or more of these signs of a plumbing leak, it’s time to contact a Las Vegas or Henderson plumber before any major damage can occur to your home or commercial property. The last thing you want is to face hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars in repairs because you ignored these common signs.
The experienced technicians at Larkin Plumbing in Las Vegas offer both residential leak detection and commercial leak detection services around the clock. We’ll identify the issue quickly and get you back up and running in no time. Contact our team to learn more.