Steps to Take When You Find a Burst Pipe
Slabs are a quick and inexpensive alternative to pier and beam foundations. Housing demands toward the middle of the 20th century lead home builders to prepare slabs onsite using concrete reinforced rebar. Beneath the slab lies the home’s plumbing lines.
What Causes a Slab Leak? Building foundations are designed with some movement in mind. Earth’s movement and the weight of the home can cause some shifting. Leaky plumbing fixtures under the slab soften the soil underneath the foundation, making the soul the ideal consistency to sink and shift, causing damage to the foundation.
Corroded pipes are a primary cause of plumbing leaks below the slab. Cast iron and galvanized steel pipes were once the preferred materials for piping under the foundation. Unfortunately, both materials are susceptible to corrosion, leading modern plumbers to choose copper or plastic materials. PVC is the most common option, with PEX and CPVC gaining popularity in recent years. These materials offer corrosion resistance with relatively few drawbacks.
Slab damage can result in major issues for home and property owners.
Slab Leak Consequences
Nearly a quarter of homes in the US experience slab related damage caused by shifting soils, according to studies by the ASCE. If your home experiences a slab leak, what problems may occur?
Slab leaks may result in flooding or leaking in the basement or flooring near the foundation. They can also cause water bills to increase as water leaks beneath the home. Mold from the excess moisture can also cause costly damage to your home and harm to your family. Excess moisture from the leak can cause mold growth. Potentially harming family members and requiring mold remediation.
The cost of repairs and remediation depends on the severity of the leak. While some home insurance companies may cover a fraction of the price, most will not cover the full cost. Homeowners may have to pay for repairs out of pocket.
Fortunately, there are clear signs that your home may have a slab leak.
Detecting Slab Leak Signs
Slab leaks may not be obvious, but there are several indications that a leak may be occurring on your property. Red Rooter Plumbing can help when you are experiencing the following symptoms:
If you notice any of the above signs, contact Red Rooter Plumbing to detect and diagnose the slab leak right away.
Slab Leak Diagnosis
While the symptoms alone may not diagnose a slab leak with absolute certainty, your water meter can provide additional clues. Turn off every source of water in your home and check if the water meter is still running. If the meter is still running, you likely have a leak that needs diagnosis.
Professional leak detection from Red Rooter Plumbing means not having to damage the foundation for a visual inspection. Modern plumbers use state-of-the-art technology to detect and diagnose leaks. Electronic equipment designed to detect and locate leaks makes finding the leak easy without causing any destruction to the slab. If we determine you have a slab leak, we can recommend the best way to repair it.
Options for Repairing Slab Leaks
How to repair a slab leak? Our plumbing specialists have slab leak repair experience and the right equipment to complete your repair. There are three primary methods of fixing the leak, depending on the severity. They are relining, repiping, and rerouting.
Relining is the least expensive fix for leaks, but we only recommend it for repairing leaks occurring in a single section of pipe. The plumber will cut away the floor where the leak is occurring and repair the lining with epoxy or replace the section of pipe. We restore the flooring to its previous state by replacing the cut section of flooring.
Repiping is a long-term solution for old pipes with significant corrosion and multiple leaks. We remove the slab and all of the plumbing beneath it. We can either replace the pipes where they are or install new lines above ground. With your home’s piping entirely replaced, you have peace of mind, but repiping is the most costly option.
Rerouting is similar to repiping, but instead of digging up every pipe underneath the slab, we selectively seal off damaged and old pipes, replacing them with new lines above ground. If a majority of your pipes are still in good shape, rerouting can be more cost-effective than repiping.
Red Rooter Plumbing delivers slab leak solutions in the Palm Beach area.