A “slab leak” is what happens when your plumbing system leaks under the concrete slab foundation. This can lead to a number of issues that will only get worse (a.k.a more expensive) if the leak isn’t fixed. There are several possible causes of slab leaks.
#1. Ground Shifts
Often time, the heavyweight of a house takes a toll on the concrete slab and the earth on which it was built, resulting in the slab settling and the ground shifting. If the shift is notable enough, it puts pressure on the water lines, which leads to cracking and leaks.
#2. Clay Below the Foundation
Clay shrinks when it dries and expands when it is wet. This contracting and expanding has the same result as ground shifts and makes the concrete to crack finally. The underground plumbing is linked to the slab, and when movement happens, a fitting can crack or loosen, causing a leak.
#3. Natural Disasters
Natural disasters have the same outcome as ground shifts; however, the results occur more quickly.
#4. Faulty Wrapping
During regular use, pipes expand and shrink. If the pipes are exposed or not wrapped, or maybe wrapped improperly, they will rub directly against the concrete in the slab. This usually leads to cracks and leaks.
#5. Nicked Line
Most times, pipes are a little damaged during installation. The damage is not notable enough to cause leaking during the initial inspections; however, over time, the pipe will corrode, and a small nick will become a leaky crack.
Copper in pipes communicates with minerals in the soil under the slab, resulting in a subtle electrical reaction that corrodes the pipes until they leak.
It is necessary to detect a slab leak repair on time, so it does not result in severe damage. As soon as the slab leak is detected, it is necessary to fix it immediately. Each day you delay repairing, it contributes more to the damage, increasing repair costs.
The more you delay, the more the foundation and walls of your home get severely structurally damaged. Your windows may even shatter and cause notable bodily injury.
Signs You Need A Slab Leak Repair Are As Follow:
- Hearable running water when your water is turned off.
- Less water pressure.
- A hot spot on the floor can specify a leak in the hot water line.
- Your carpet is moist, or your flooring is warped.
- You find mold below your carpet.
- There is a musky smell, like that of a moist basement, or even worse.
- If the leak is beneath your yard, there will be flooding in your yard, mushy patches of grass.
- Although not verified, a cracked slab is a sign of a slab leak.
- If your water bill high abnormally, it may be due to a slab leak.
If you notice that you need a slab leak repair, you must first detect the location of the leak. To prevent breaking your concrete and dig into your foundation, it is best to make use of an electric detection tool. Probably, you will like to find a leak detection expert to detect the location of your slab leak repair spot. You should be able to locate a quality professional for around $150 to $400.
Slap leaks are very hard to fix on your own, and trying to do so can result in more severe damage to your property. When you encounter a slab leak, it is best to leave the “Do It Yourself” book on its shelf and call a specialist. The specialists have different options for repairing a slab leak.
Epoxy Restoration Method
If your leak can be repaired by the epoxy restoration method, you are lucky. The epoxy restoration method needs minimal demolition of your foundation and is consequently the cheapest method of slab leak repair. In the epoxy restoration method, the expert makes two access holes to access the leak for repair.
Re-piping is the best method to use when a house has multiple slab leaks. Re-piping is also good because it permanently prevents leaks. In re-piping, the specialist installs an entirely new and lasting piping system that uses expansion to ensure the fittings are secure and the system is leak-free. If you chose this route, be sure to research about the system’s warranty. In my experience, I will advise you to look for a lifetime warranty.
Pipe re-routing needs the demolition of concrete and is the method of choice when pipes in both the walls and floors must be replaced. The pipe re-routing method is best if only a short amount of pipe requires replacing because that will reduce the high demo and labor costs connected with this method of slab leak repair.
Homeowner’s insurance can cover part, if not all, the costs associated with a slab leak. If a simple repair is all you required, your insurance will most likely take care of the cost demolition and pipe replacement, however, it may not cover the labor expenses involved.
Re-piping and re-routing usually are not covered, but because they lower the risk of leaks and water damage inside your home, you can decide to petition your insurance company to adjust your rates after the job is done.
It was reported in 2014 that the national average cost of slab leak repair was $2,000. But, slab leak repair in Indianapolis can be as cheap as $300 for a simple repair and as expansive as $8,000 if there is severe damage, and it needs pipe re-routing. However, even with the high costs, you need to have a slab leak fixed immediately.
Slab leaks can result in mold, which can result in deadly respiratory problems and cause severe structural damage to your home by rotting supporting structures. As soon as you notice the sign of a slab leak, fix it immediately by calling a professional plumber.