I think we’ve all been lying down in bed, drifting off to sleep only to hear the sound of a running toilet or the dripping sound of a faucet. These sounds let you know you have a plumbing concern. It’s easy to identify a problem when we can hear it first hand, but how do we know we have a potential plumbing emergency when we hear nothing at all? In most cases, your plumbing system will give you signs of an impending problem, so you can deal with it before it becomes a real problem. Use your senses of hearing, sight, and smell to detect a likely plumbing issue. When you ask yourself what can go wrong with our plumbing, here are four silent warning signs that will give a homeowner the heads up to break out their toolbox before a simple problem turns into a plumbing emergency.
Problems With Leaky Pipes
The next time you are looking for something under your bathroom or kitchen sinks, start poking around under them. You’ll want to check for discoloration on the pipes, especially where the pipes are connected. You may even notice moisture or even signs of mold. Check for signs of rust or water around the water supply lines. These lines are pressurized and could cause severe damage. Water supply lines could go unchecked for the life of a home.
In some cases, they’ve been in the “on” position for the life of the house, and when turned “off”, then they start leaking. If you notice discoloration on the drainpipe, that means you’re experiencing dripping from the sink or drain line, and you’ll need to add the problem to your plumbing to-do list.
Bubbling In Your Paint Or Wall Covering
When bubbling shows up on your paint or wallcovering, it’s time to investigate quickly. Another place to look for the moisture is in the ceiling, where brown spots may occur. Any of these occurrences can be a real headache but caught and addressed early enough, you can minimize the damage. The issue is usually a leak in the plumbing system, such as a copper pipe or a roof leak. You may want to shut off the water and call your plumbing professional.
Smelling A Sewer Odor
The odor you’re smelling is usually isolated to one area, so let your nose do the walking. Chances are the smell is coming from a sink that rarely gets used. Every sink has a trap that blocks sewer gases from entering your home. The trap is under your sink and it fills up with water every time you use the faucet replacing the old water with the new. The water in the trap blocks sewer gases from entering your home then gets released through a vent in your roof. If the sink in question is never used, the water dries up, and the sewer gases get released into your home. The solution is as simple as running water down your sink, and the trap will fill back up.
My Water Bill Went Through The Roof
Did your water bill spike? This could be a sign that there is a lingering problem with your plumbing system. Some things would justify a spike in the water bill, such as filling a pool or doing more than regular watering. Your best bet is to start troubleshooting. You can start with your toilets. Put a couple of drops of food coloring in your tank. If it shows up in your toilet bowl then your toilet leaks. Toilet leaks can consume a significant amount of water without knowing it. You can also turn the water off at the meter. With all the water turned off in the home, watch to see if the meter moves. If it does, you have a leak somewhere in your home. It could be something as small as a leaky faucet or as large as a slab leak.