Water leaks can wreak havoc on your home. Even a small water leak can become a disastrous mess over time, which is why it’s important to run water leak tests in your home on a regular, scheduled basis. If you suspect a leak, it should be inspected right away. Leaks that are left unrepaired will eventually cause damage to your home. Some types of water leaks may seem insignificant. What many homeowners don’t realize is that even a little water damage can lead to bigger issues. Here are five common water leak areas and tips on checking for leaks:
Your roof is the first layer of protection your home has against the elements. This means the roof takes the first hits that rain, snow, ice and wind deal to the structure. Any one of these elements can cause enough damage to create water leaks. Walk through your home checking for water stains on the ceilings and tops of walls where they meet the ceiling. Stains indicate a leak. If you have an attic, look there for water on a rainy day. If you feel safe on the roof, check for loose, damaged or missing shingles outside. Check the flashing, gaskets around pipes, the boots, and the downspouts for breaks or clogs.
Toilets are a common leak problem. If you see water on the floor near the base, you probably have a leaky toilet. If you aren’t sure, remove the tank lid. Flush the toilet and let it refill completely. Add about 4-5 drops of dark-coloured food colouring and replace the lid. Wait 20-30 minutes and check the toilet bowl. If the water’s clear, there’s no leak. If the water changed colors, your toilet needs professional attention.
Water heaters need regular checks and maintenance to prevent problems. These appliances last years if they are well cared for. If they are neglected, chances are at some point you’ll experience a water leak. Most people automatically think if they see water collecting around the base, they have a leak. However, this may just be condensation. To see if you do have a true leak, check the drain valve and make sure it is tight. If not, tighten it with a wrench. Then, make sure all the pipes are well-fitting but not overly tight. Replace bad pipes and make sure your drain pan isn’t clogged and in good condition.
If pipes are not properly winterized they can rupture and spring a leak. Check all your indoor pipes regularly to spot any corrosion or loose connections, and pipes that are improperly fitted or installed. Anywhere else you have exposed pipes (under sinks, behind toilets and the refrigerator), make sure the pipes are in good condition, properly insulated, and there is no water visibly dripping or collecting underneath. Also, be sure to winterize your pipes every winter to prevent ruptured pipes.
Window and Door Seals
Look for water stains above and around windows and doors (including walls, windowsills or around door jambs). Check for air blowing through cracks around the windows. If you feel air, water can get in, too. Improperly sealed windows and doors are a big cause for water infiltration, which can cause damage to the integrity of your home’s structure. Basement windows and doors are especially vulnerable because of downhill runoff, and a basement is usually the first area to flood. Go room-to-room; check the sealing around all of your windows and doors. Apply a heavy-duty caulk to windows and doors where the caulking is old, too thin, or missing entirely (unsealed).
Call the Professionals
No time is a good time for a flood in your home. Fix leaks before they have a chance to cause damage. For additional prevention advice, call our professionals at Dial One Duct Cleaning or have us take care of your water leaks quickly and thoroughly: (416) 896-4799.