How to Find a Leaky Pipe

Leaking pipes can leave walls and floors damaged, and create a lot of headaches for homeowners. Everyone knows the scenario. You step out of the shower, looking forward to a good Saturday. You have plans to meet your friends for breakfast, but are running a little late. You walk downstairs, fresh and feeling good, until you soak your socks in a puddle in the middle of your living room. An incessant supply of water drips from your ceiling directly below your shower. You can no longer leave to meet your friends and are forced try to solve this issue yourself, and quickly, for the volume of water is increasing, as well as the damage. So how do you find a leaky pipe?

Locating the pipe that is causing the problem is the first step. Sometimes it isn’t a wet floor that gives it away. Occasionally a heightened utilities bill can be a sign of a leak, as water constantly runs out of a pipe. The leaks you can’t see or feel are tricky. Nevertheless, here are some tips and steps to make the process somewhat easier.

#1. Do not panic. People often make rash and costly decisions when they panic. For example, do not rush the process by tearing down parts of the wall. If you do not know where the leak is located yet, trial and error is not the way to go. This results in more damage and ultimately higher expenses. Think it through before you start pulling apart your house.

#2. Leaks often make sounds. Follow the sound. If you are completely clueless to where the leak is located, which is rarely the case, listen for the slight hissing noises often associated with a leaky pipe. A more severe leak will have a louder and more intense sound. Find the leak by finding the sound.

#3. So if you don’t pull away pieces of your wall, ceiling, or floor, how do you locate the leak’s exact point of weakness? New technology allows people to find and even see leaks without tearing apart their houses. An infrared imager allows you to see through walls and spot the point at which the pipe is releasing water. Leaks can also be located via a device that measure moisture and dampness in a given environment. A hygrometer does just that. By locating an area within the wall, ceiling, or floor that has a significantly higher level of moisture, you can find the source of the leak.

#4. Once the leak is located, mark your wall, ceiling, or floor, so that when you do cut, there is no excessive cost or damage. When you are positive of the leaks location, and have marked it thoroughly, you may take the next steps toward fixing it, whether you do it yourself or hire a professional.

Locating the leak is usually the most difficult part of the process. If you can locate your leak without further damaging your house, you are putting yourself in the best position to limit both the stress you experience and the ultimate amount of money you spend. Follow these steps, and you are on your way to doing just that!