As a homeowner, you probably already realize you and your home could really use a human-to-home translation dictionary.
This is especially true when it comes to more subtle home problems like slab leaks. In most homes, it isn’t possible to see your foundation slab directly.
Even in homes where this is possible, most homeowners don’t spend a lot of time staring at their foundation assessing its condition!
Slab leaks can be incredibly damaging and costly. Luckily, this is one type of problem in which warning signs appear far in advance of a major water leak. But if you don’t know what you are looking at, you still won’t catch the signs until it is too late.
In this post, learn eight common, subtle signs that you’ve got a developing slab leak on your hands. Also learn what we recommend for how to fix foundation leaks from the inside.
1. Sudden Water Bill Increase
One of the most common causes of slab leaks is a problem with underground water pipes.
Corrosion, abrasion, mineral build-up and rust can lead to pipes leaking. In winter, frozen pipes can burst. Tree roots can also wrap around pipes.
While you probably won’t miss the signs of a major water leak, when the leak is small and developing over time, often the only way you can tell is by watching your monthly water bill.
When it goes up even as your water usage remains the same, this is a sign of a probable leak.
2. Decrease in Water Pressure
Another subtle sign you may have a foundation leak is a decrease in your water pressure.
Here again, it is most likely a leaking pipe that is to blame.
3. Less Available Hot Water.
When the hot water pipes are compromised, you may notice your hot water supply runs out faster than you are accustomed to.
This is typically not a warning sign you will fail to notice, since no one likes showering in cold water!
However, the real feat is to connect the lack of available hot water with a potential leaking foundation.
4. Hot Water Heater Never Shuts Off
Here again, if you have a leak in one of your hot water pipes, often the only way your home can let you know is by running the hot water heater continually.
It is not normal for the hot water heater to run for hours at a time. If you notice this, it is time to dig deeper and look for a possible slab leak.
5. Hot Spots
Another subtle warning sign of a slab leak that many homeowners miss is the appearance of “hot spots” in places on the floor.
In fact, typically the first family member to notice these is the family pet!
Cats and dogs who enjoy the warmth may change their favorite napping spot and this can be a signal your floor has developed a hot spot and perhaps a foundation leak.
6. Damp or Wet Spots
If there are areas either inside or outside your home that are perpetually damp or wet, this is another possible indication that your slab has developed a leak.
Here, it is especially important to take time regularly to patrol both the outside and inside of your house.
Many homeowners have failed to catch the subtle indication of a developing slab leak because the damp spot was outside on the lawn rather than inside on the carpeting.
Cracks are never a welcome sign, whether they appear in the wall, floor, ceiling or elsewhere.
Here again, it is important to keep on the lookout for cracks both inside and outside your home and also in your garage or other outlying structures.
Some cracks can be particularly hard to see, especially if your home has multiple stories. A leaning chimney can be another telltale sign that there may be a problem with your foundation’s structure.
As well tiny micro-cracks called fissures are often impossible to see with the unaided eye, especially when they occur deep inside your walls or slab.
One of the subtlest warning signs of all is the presence of efflorescence, a white powdery residue that is left after water evaporates. Efflorescence is made up of water-borne mineral salts and always indicates a leak or crack somewhere nearby.
8. Flooring Starts to Buckle or Rise Up
Whenever you see cracks in tile, laminate, hardwood or concrete flooring, you can be sure that somewhere below there is moisture trying to make its way through.
This is the nature of water and concrete. Water is constantly seeking a way out and through the soil and concrete is naturally porous, so water will always be drawn to concrete.
If you have carpeting, it is far more challenging to see the early signs of a developing crack or slab leak.
But if your carpet suddenly starts to rise up, feels continually damp to the touch, “bubbles” or buckles when you walk across it or smells slightly musty, this can be a sign you have an emerging slab leak.
How to Fix a Leaky Foundation from the Inside
With today’s advanced waterproofing technology, it is surprisingly economical, easy and quick to repair many types of slab leaks.
From damp proofing and moisture barriers to full-on affordable basement waterproofing, most foundation leaks can be fixed in just a day or two.
Of course, the earlier you catch the subtle warning signs, the easier and faster the repairs will be to accomplish!
Get in Touch
Do you suspect you may have a slab leak? With our no-stress EasyQuote diagnostic process, you can have a free, no-obligation repair quote in hand in no time!
Once you know exactly what the problem is, you have the information you need to decide on next steps.
Contact us online or give us a call at 1-866-875-6664.