Leaky pipes are one of the most common causes of indoor flood damage. Because so many of the pipes in our homes are not visible, water and flood damage from them can go unnoticed until it becomes a severe problem.
Corrosion: As pipes age, they begin to corrode and rust. This corrosion can eat away at your pipes and compromise their structural integrity. To check for corrosion, look for any discoloration or rust in your pipes. Warping in pipes is also a sign of corrosion. If your plumbing system is over 10 years old, it is a good idea to have your pipes inspected by a plumber to ensure that they are still in good condition.
Broken Seals: All connections from pipes to appliances are installed with seals. With use and age, these seals can become weakened and begin to crack (like caulk around windows or bath tubs). Water can begin to leak through these connections if seals are not strong enough. To check for broken seals, you should look around your appliances for any condensation or pooling of water. If you notice either of these things, or any water leaking from appliances, you should check the seals on the pipe connectors.
Weakened Pipe Joints: Pipe connections are the weakest points in plumbing. Joints that allow pipes to turn, curve, and bend can deteriorate causing leaks. Checking pipe joints is not easy because most are located in areas we cannot see like behind the walls. What you can do is listen for noisy pipes, strained pipes, or ticking or banging noises when you turn the water on. These noises often mean that there is increased pressure on pipe joints and should be evaluated by a plumber.
High Water Pressure: High water pressure in the shower is desirable, but high water pressure in your pipes over time can lead to leaks and bursts. Most pipes and faucets are made to withstand a certain amount of water pressure. Once that level has been surpassed, your pipes are at an extremely increased risk of leaking or bursting, causing water to flood into your home. To check the water pressure going to your home, you can purchase a water pressure gauge at most home improvement stores. You attach the water gauge to a spigot, and then turn the water on to flow through it. The gauge will give you a reading on your water pressure in pounds per square inch or PSI. The average home should have around 40 to 70 PSI, so if your reading is much higher or lower than that, you know you have a problem that needs to be checked by a professional.
Keeping up on pipe maintenance and routine inspection can help prevent water from damaging your home due to leaky pipes. If you do find yourself dealing with water and flood damage, the water damage restoration experts at 24 Restore are here to help. With 24/7 emergency response services in Minneapolis, 24 Restore is ready to get to work as soon as water damage strikes whether from leaky pipes or any other source.