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What Is a Slab Leak and Can It Be Prevented?

What Is a Slab Leak and Can It Be Prevented?

Published By: Vince Vince

As a homeowner, you have probably asked the question, “What is a slab leak?” This article answers the question and lays out how you might be able to prevent one.

If your home is built on a slab foundation, you are at risk of experiencing a slab leak. For those who have never heard of such a thing, this should be a wake-up call.

Before you can prevent a slab leak from happening to your home, you need to know what it is, what can cause it, and what the signs are.

What Is a Slab Leak?

To put it plainly, a slab leak is a rupture in one of the pipes running below your home’s foundation. These leaks are often the result of corrosion of the copper pipes that feed water into your home and take water out.

Slab leaks can cause serious damage to your home, so it is important to find them as quickly as possible after they form. In some cases, they can even lead to the collapse of your foundation.

Here is some more information about how these leaks can form.

What Causes a Slab Leak to Form?

There are generally four ways that the plumbing underneath your home can be damaged—poor installation, foundation shifts, abrasion from expansion and contraction, and corrosion.

If the pipes were damaged or improperly installed when your home was built, it could lead to a leak under your foundation. Whether the pipes were banged up during building or the joints weren’t properly sealed, the damage could accumulate.

It is just a fact of homeownership that foundations shift. The ground surrounding your home may be unstable, which can result in shifting soil and increased pressure on your pipes. Too much pressure and they may rupture.

As the seasons change, the water temperature inside your pipes rises and falls. These shifts lead to expansion and contraction in your home’s pipes. For the pipes under your foundations, it could also mean that they are rubbing against rocks and concrete, which could wear a hole through the metal.

Exposure to substances in the soil and in the water can also lead to a slab leak. Corrosion happens when the pipes react to substances that are touching them, both inside and out.

Signs of a Problem

Slab leak damage can be prevented if you know the signs. If you notice any of these signs, it could mean your home has a slab leak. You should contact a plumber as soon as you can to prevent significant damage from taking place:

  • A moving water meter dial when you are not using water.
  • The carpeting on your foundation is moist or has mildew.
  • Your floors or walls are damp.
  • Your water pressure is unusually low.
  • You have mold.
  • Your home has standing water around its perimeter.
  • Your water bill is higher than usual.

Still wondering, “What is a slab leak?” Get in touch with a professional. Don’t wait to address these problems. It could be another plumbing issue that is causing these things, but you should rule out a slab leak first.

Contact Custom Plumbing of Arizona to speak to a professional.