Leaks aren't always the dramatic burst pipe of sitcom fame. Sometimes they can creep up on you until you don't realize how much water you're losing -- or how much damage has been done.
Some figures show the average family wastes 11,000 gallons of water each year through leaks alone. That's roughly 270 loads of laundry, and those lost water costs add up.
Keep ahead of any possible leaks by following these five tips.
1. Your monthly water bills jump
Always compare your month-to-month use of water. You may not notice water loss from a small leak for a while, but water bills that increase steadily are one sure clue. If you suspect you have a leak:
- find your water meter
- stop all water use
- mark the meter
- wait an hour without using water
- check the meter again
If the meter indicator has moved, chances are good you have a leak somewhere. If you don't know where the leak might be, call a professional plumber to determine the problem.
2. Mold where there shouldn't be mold
Mold in a shower is a given -- it's hard to clean it all. But if you notice mold on non-shower walls, you may have trouble that needs a professional's touch.
3. Phantom running water
Hearing running water when nothing is turned on is another sign something may be leaking somewhere. Check all the usual suspects first -- garden taps, shower nozzles, and taps.
Discolorations on walls or ceilings often signal the presence of a leak. On floors, look for discolorations where nothing has been spilled and for areas that feel spongy or moist underfoot. Blistering paint and peeling wallpaper may also indicate leaks inside walls or ceilings.
Standing water often gets a musty or foul smell. If you notice odd smells in your home or bathroom even after you've completely cleaned, especially if the smell is near a floor or drain, check for a leaking pipe under the floor.
Leaks can cause extensive damage to a room or home. Be sure to catch them before they become a problem, and don't hesitate to ask a professional for help.
Don't be submerged by the water in your Salt Lake City home. Call Valley Plumbing and Drain Cleaning at 801-341-4222 today, and get that water leak repaired now!