Whether you run a household or a business, water is essential to your day-to-day activities. However, it can also be the source of your stress if it leaks or enters into the liveable space of your home.
While plumbing leaks are notorious issues of older homes, they can be common even in new buildings. The U.S. Housing Study found that 1 in 12 homes experience a plumbing leak each year, and figures from the Insurance Information Institute show such issues cause more than $13 billion in insurance claims.
Detecting water leaks early and enlisting swift water mitigation is key to protecting your Suffolk County home or business. However, with water lines often intricately placed inside buildings, it can be challenging to locate leaks during their early stages.
Fortunately, finding hidden water leaks is not impossible, and catching these signs can save you from the stress and expenses of property water damage.
Unreasonably High Water Usage
According to water industry estimates, a family of four would use 12,000 gallons of water every month. You’ll likely have a severe plumbing leak if your water consumption is significantly higher than this figure.
Checking your water meter can also help you detect problems with your plumbing system. Switch off your main water valve, turn off all the faucets, and ensure all appliances using water are not running. Then, observe your meter for the next few minutes. If it continues to tick even with all your faucets turned off, you may be dealing with a leak.
Water meters also have leak indicators on them. Depending on the brand, it could be a small triangular dial or silver wheel that ticks or rotates when water flows.
Sudden Spikes in Your Water Bill
During Long Island’s spring and summer months, you may see yourself doing more activities that use water, whether watering your garden, filling your pools, or having extra showers. These seasonal variations will naturally cause your water bills to rise. However, they shouldn’t shoot up astronomically or consistently month after month.
If your water usage has not changed drastically, but the water consumption indicated on your bill shows otherwise, it’s best to call a plumber to inspect your pipes as soon as possible.
Weakened or unstable structures are another sign you’re dealing with a hidden water leak and need water restoration soon. Unfortunately, these can occur anywhere in your home.
Water or excess moisture from leaks can cause your kitchen’s tiles or caulking to peel or crack. They can also stain or warp bathroom floors and walls. Finally, leaks can cause your basement’s carpeting to become moist and develop a musty smell.
The moment you confirm that leaks are compromising your floors’ structural integrity, it’s crucial to get in touch with a professional water mitigation company immediately. They have the knowledge and skill to address the water damage on your floors and replace them if necessary.
Mold and Mildew
One telltale sign of hidden water leaks is the appearance of mold. It often comes with these indications:
- An earthy or musty smell that doesn’t go away
- Allergic reactions or other respiratory problems that only show up when you’re indoors
- Warped walls
- Black stains, fuzzy white fibers, or specks of green or brown on walls and ceilings
If you are already seeing visible signs of microbial growth on surfaces inside your home, the water leak has likely been around for a long time — and you may be dealing with a widespread mold problem.
Mold can cause severe health conditions and eat away at your home’s organic building materials, so it’s critical that you seek help from water restoration and mold remediation experts in Suffolk County. Delaying on getting professional intervention will only lead to extensive damage and expose you to serious health risks.
Common Places Where Water Damage Can Happen
Aside from knowing the common signs of hidden water leaks above, it’s also a good idea to check these places for possible water damage:
- Spaces around doors and windows
- Behind washing machines
- Under kitchen and bathroom sinks
- Beneath the dishwasher
- Inside and below HVAC units
- Behind drywalls
- Around chimneys and skylights
Your Next Steps After Discovering Water Damage
Finding a hidden water leak can be challenging. Nevertheless, proactively looking for the signs above will help you detect such issues before they cause significant damage to your home.
After locating your hidden plumbing leak, don’t forget to take the necessary steps to address the issue as well. Minor leaks may be fixed with simple repairs, but it’s best to let water restoration experts handle burst pipes, plumbing emergencies, or long-term leaks that have led to structural damage and microbial growth.
If the water from your leaking fixtures has already made its way to your ceiling, walls, and any other part of your property, get in touch with Restoration 1 of Suffolk County. Our friendly restoration professionals will guide you through our straightforward water mitigation process to return your home to its pre-damaged state.