The Signs and Risks of a Plumbing Leak in Memphis

The plumbing that makes up your home is a complex system, and sometimes things go wrong. All sorts of wear and tear can cause a plumbing leak in Memphis. If you don’t realize there’s a leak in your home, it can cause some major damage to your home and your bank account. Fortunately, there are signs that can tell you when a plumbing problem is imminent.

What Happens When You Have A Plumbing Leak:

Mold and mildew

A big sign that water is leaking in your home is the growth of mold and mildew. Both of these things tend to grow in areas with high moisture and can cause health problems for the household.

Damaged paint and wallpaper

It’s possible for leaks to happen inside of your walls. If that happens, paint can peel or warp, and wallpaper can crack or become discolored.

Stained walls and ceilings

The color may be able to tell you what caused the leak. As a rule of thumb dark brown or copper stains tend to be caused by leaking pipes.

Musty odors

Mold and mildew have a very distinct scent. If you smell a musty smell that isn’t normally there, it might be a sign of a leak, and you should call a plumber as soon as you can.

Warped wood

Any kind of leak is very harmful to wood and can cause it to warp. The damage may be subtle, but it’s a good idea to check the wood in your house for curved planks, uneven surfaces, and slight discoloration. In addition, warping can also affect the doors in your home, making it hard to open or close them.


Does it look like the walls are sweating? That’s condensation, and it’s a sign that there’s a lot of moisture accumulating behind the wall. If there’s condensation, the most likely reason for this is because something is leaking behind it.

Damaged flooring

Leaks can damage flooring other than just wood. When looking for leaks, be aware of warped floors, stains, soft areas, loose or cracking tiles, peeling caulk, and damp carpets.

Cracked garage floor

Leaks in your home can also occur underground. If you notice cracks in your garage floor, an underground waterline may be leaking. Broken pipes beneath your home may also cause soil erosion, causing parts of the house to settle at a lower level.

Warm and damp floors

Damp floors can indicate a plumbing or foundation leak. However, if the dampness is also warm, the problem may be with your water heater. If your water heater isn’t the problem, you might have a sewer line leak. Hot water leaks are a bigger problem since mold grows better with hot water.


Now, here are some ways you can detect a leak that needs fixing:


Check your water meter

A great way to check your plumbing system is to check on your water meter. First, turn off all the water in your home and make sure your dishwasher and laundry machine aren’t running. From there, take a look at your water meter and see if it starts to change. If it changes quickly, then you have a fast-moving leak. If you don’t see a change, wait two hours and check back to see if you have a slower leak.

Watch your bills

Are your water bills rising despite there being no change in your water use habits? That might be a sign something is wrong with your plumbing. Take a look at your bills over the course of a few months and compare how much you spend on water. You want your bills to stay in the same range from month to month. Don’t forget that you also pay for your underground piping as well. If you suspect the leak is coming from an underground pipe, call one of our plumbers.

Use some food coloring

Toilets generally account for about 30% of a home’s water usage. Because of this, it’s important to make sure they aren’t leaking. To check for leaks, add a few drops of food coloring to the tank and wait 10-30 minutes before checking the bowl. If you find that the coloring has moved into the bowl, then that means you have a leak.

Check outside

Leaks aren’t restricted to appearing in your home. If you have outdoor spigots, test them by attaching a garden hose and turning it on. If water is seeping through the connection, replace the rubber hose gasket and make sure all the connections are tight. It’s a good idea to have a plumber check your irrigation system at least once a year.

Condensation and other wetness

A little bit of condensation in some areas can be normal, like your bathroom after a shower. However, if there’s a lot of it, it can damage your walls, floors, and ceiling. If you’re seeing condensation in an odd area, there might be a leak there. Similarly, keep an eye out for wet, warped, or discolored stains that might hint at a leak. When you’re doing repairs, double-check for the actual location of the leak, not just where the damage occurred.

What makes Stewart Plumbing my best option for leak repair?

Getting a plumbing leak in Memphis can be a serious problem. That’s why Stewart Plumbing offers several different methods to find leaks before they cause major damage. We don’t go digging through your walls and tearing everything apart in search of leaks. Pipe cameras, thermal imaging technology, air testing, and smoke testing all offer non-intrusive ways to check your pipes. Call Stewart Plumbing today to learn more about our leak detection and repair services!

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