Signs of a Pipe Burst in the Basement
Broken pipes can happen at any time in your home or business. As pipes are usually hidden from plain view, a broken leaky pipe may be difficult to detect and if left unattended it may cause serious damage that can become costly.
Why do Pipes Burst
Freezing, installation issues, physical damage, or even rust can cause pipes to burst. All it takes is one tiny hole in the pipe and then in time it turns into a larger hole. Whether water soaks into carpeting, drywall, or other areas of your home, it can become a costly repair. You should never ignore signs of a possible broken pipe.
Identifying a broken pipe is very important in preventing further costly damage to your home or business. Here are a few ways you can easily identify a broken pipe in your home:
Changes in Water Pressure
You should always check the water pressure in your faucets when you are washing your hands or taking a shower. If you notice a change in water pressure, that may be a sign of a broken pipe. If the water pressure is very low, that means that the water is possibly leaking somewhere in the system. In the case of frozen pipes, you may have no water coming out of the faucets.
Water that Smells or is Discolored
If your water has a strange brown color or a bad smell, this is a sign of a burst pipe. When the water turns a brown color, that means that there is a broken pipe in the ground. Over time the pipe will rust, and dirt, bacteria, and other contaminants can get into the water which is a health hazard for you and your family.
If you have an issue with your water having a bad smell, such as that of rotten eggs, that may be a sign of a sewage leak, as it is caused by hydrogen sulfide which forms in the sewer lines. It is crucially important to have this issue looked at by our plumbing professionals.
Strange Sounds Coming from the Pipes
Plumbing professionals install piping to be as quiet as possible. Therefore, if you notice strange sounds coming from your pipes, that may be a sign of a leak. You may hear whistling or bubbling sounds which indicate a leaky pipe. Bubbling is caused by air getting into sewer lines. Dented piping causes whistling sounds and the water tries to go through the small sections of the pipe. If you happen to hear a dripping sound when the water is running, that means that the leak is already there.
Standing Water Below the Sink
The main way you can tell if there is a leaky pipe in your home or business is to check for standing water below the sink. You can also check for wet carpeting and flooring as major signs that there is a leak in your system.
High Water Bill
If you notice that your water bill is suddenly too high without any major changes in use, you may have a leaky pipe that is causing the excess water usage. This problem should be looked at right away so that it does not cause more water damage.
A major sign of burst pipes are water marks on the wall. As pipes are hidden behind the walls in your home or business, when they break or leak, they will leave a mark. Sometimes you may even notice that the wall is wet or squishy.
Issue with Exposed Piping
When pipes are exposed, there is a higher chance that they will burst. These pipes are usually located below your sink, or they pass through an unfinished basement. You should always look for ice, frost, and condensation as major signs if the water inside the pipe is frozen or about to freeze. If there are bulges in the pipe that means the water is already frozen and it may burst.
You may find a leaky pipe in your home or business easily by looking at sources of puddles or dripping water around your property. You may find stains on your ceiling or drywall or in the case of an exposed pipe, you may see where the hole is located. However, there are also leaks that are difficult to spot because they are hidden behind the walls.
If you think you may have a leak, you need to first figure out if it is inside your home or business or if it is outside in the water main. To test and check for a leaky pipe, you need to make sure to first shut off all appliances that use water and not use toilets or other sources of water while you are testing. You will then check the water meter. Then check again after half hour to see if it moved at all. If it did, you are dealing with a leak.
Next, you will need to figure out if the leak is inside or outside. First, the main valve needs to be shut off. Make sure to watch your meter, and if it stops moving, that means the leak is inside. If it keeps moving, then the leak is outside the home.
Finally, once you have figured out that you have a leak, always try to fully locate it by looking for any visible signs such as near sinks, showers, or toilets. However, if you are unable to locate the leak, it is best to reach out to a plumber for help. If the leak has caused damage in your home, you will need to call a water damage restoration professional to restore the damage.