A slab leak is a leak from a pipe or pipes located under the foundation or concrete slab of your home. A slab leak can easily become a major problem the longer it goes undetected and can compromise the integrity of your home’s foundation.
How to Tell If You Have a Slab Leak
Avoid serious damage to the inside of your home by quickly learning how to tell if you have a slab leak. Don't let potential issues take a turn for the worse — take the right steps to detect a slab leak now to help prevent further problems later on.
Signs you have a slab leak and should contact a professional plumber include:
- Experiencing an increase in your water bill, caused by constantly running water
- Smelling mold or mildew, indicating growth under floorboards or carpeting, or in drywall
- Hearing running or gushing water despite all fixtures and appliances being turned off
- Uncovering damaged or wet flooring, whether it be damp carpeting or hardwood flooring
- Finding cracks in walls or flooring, particularly if you notice moisture accompanying them
- Feeling hot spots on your floor, which would be originating from a leaking hot water line
- Having reduced water pressure, signaling that water is escaping from a pipe
- Noticing pooling water either outside or inside your home, which can't be otherwise explained
FIXING SLAB LEAKS
First and most important is to find a licensed plumbing resource that has experience repairing slab leaks. Because the very foundation of your home is involved, make sure you only hire a true and dependable expert!
Slab leaks are fixed in one of two ways, directly accessing the leak from inside the home or digging a pathway underneath the home to access the leak (or leaks if multiple leaks are suspected). Direct access involves identifying the area of the leak from inside the home and breaking into the concrete slab to access the plumbing “ usually with a jackhammer. This method is loud, messy and may miss additional leaks (or even create them with the force of the machinery). Digging or tunneling under the home to the leak or leaks then removing and replacing the leaking sections of pipe is preferable. In a case of multiple leaks along a pipeline, it may be necessary to re-route the plumbing to a more substantial line of piping.