How to Find a Water Leak in Your Home
Working out how to find a water leak can be challenging. You could be forgiven for thinking that identifying a water leak is all about hearing that dreaded drip. Alarmingly, however, the signs are often much less obvious. They include:
- A drop in water pressure
- An unexpectedly high water bill
- A water meter that shows water usage when it has been shut off
- Puddling or pooling around appliances, near walls or outside
When left undetected, the eventual damage to your home can be disastrous. So, prevent a small leak from becoming something far more stressful with our guide on water leak detection.
6 Steps to Spotting a Leak in Your Home
To stay proactive in spotting water leaks, we suggest following these steps:
1. Monitor the water pressure
Wondering why your bath is taking longer to fill than usual? A dip in water pressure may be a small inconvenience, but it’s important to know that this could be down to a leak. Try turning all your fixtures off and then turn one back on. If the pressure now seems higher, there could be a leak.
2. Keep track of your water bill
Unlike other household costs, water bills typically stay consistent. As a result, you may be tempted to take your eye off the numbers. But it’s worth checking them regularly to spot large hikes. If you can’t account for the extra water usage, you may be on to a leak.
3. Watch the water meter
When your sums don’t add up or your pressure is irregular, turn to your water meter to confirm or deny the presence of a leak.
Firstly, shut off all running water and then record the numbers on the meter. If they’ve changed an hour later, there may be a leak. In this case, go the extra mile by repeating the same process, but this time shut off your whole water supply at the mains. Did the numbers change after an hour? If so, the leak is outside – if not, the issue lies indoors.
4. Check for patches of greener grass
Much greener patches in your garden (sometimes even with puddles on) could indicate an underground burst pipe. If you already suspected a leak, then you may have found what you’re looking for. But if this is your first indication, follow the above steps.
5. Investigate appliances and fixtures
Take a look under all water basins and water-based appliances in your home. Collections of water here can provide further confirmation – or initial signs – that you have an indoor leak. We explore the most common places to look later on in this guide.
6. Dye-test the toilet
One of the last places you would expect to use food colouring is in your toilet tanks, but a few drops in each one could lead you to the leak you’ve been looking for. If colour appears in the bowl within five minutes, then your toilet’s flapper could be damaged, causing the leak.
Common Signs of a Leak
While we’ve established that effective leak detection requires some investigation, it’s important not to lose sight of the most common signs of a leak, such as:
- Bubbling paint or wallpaper
- Wall discolouration
- Musty smell
- Dripping sound
- Puddling or pooling
Do these signs sound familiar? Many people ignore them, not knowing that they’re actually indications of leak-related water damage. If you spot any of these, follow the steps above for confirmation before it becomes a larger issue.
Common Places for Water Leaks in the Home
Knowing where to look, as well as what to look for, will help you on the way to finding a water leak. We advise keeping an eye on the following water supply hotspots for visible dripping, drops in pressure or collections of water:
- Water tanks, water heaters and boilers
- Supply pipes
Placing a water leak detector in these areas, making sure attachments are secure, and replacing simple parts may be a job for you and your DIY skills. But for anything more complicated, it’s vital you call a professional to avoid making costly errors and potentially making the leak worse.
How can Rainbow International help with water leaks?
Although minor leaks can be tracked and easily located using these methods, the water doesn’t always flow in your favour – especially when the origin of the leak lies within your building’s infrastructure. Crucially, with every second a water pipe is left to leak, the damage becomes more difficult and expensive to repair.
Professional water leak detection services, like those we provide here at Rainbow, will find the source and fix the issue as soon as possible. We’ll work with your insurance company, giving you full use of trace and access cover. And when we’re done, we’ll provide a comprehensive report giving you all the essential information you need about the leak and any next steps.
Even when you’ve done everything right, water damage to your property can be unforgiving. That’s why Rainbow also offers cleaning, restoration and repair for those scenarios, returning your space back to the pre-incident condition it belongs in. If you suspect a water leak or have already suffered the consequences of one, please get in touch today to see how we can help.