A home that is supported by a concrete slab may contain copper piping that is responsible for routing water into a residence. A slab is a flat, thick piece of concrete that is constructed around plumbing components. Occasionally, a pinhole or another type of damage will occur to the plumbing, resulting in a water leak.
Reasons For Damage
Pressure on or under a concrete slab, shifting soil, and vibrations can cause damage to slab plumbing. Areas that are prone to earthquakes and property that is subjected to erosion may be more likely to incur damage to plumbing. If the plumbing that was initially installed was constructed of inferior materials or was routed improperly, these two variables could cause a pinhole or a crack to form in plumbing materials.
A Property Owner's Assessment
There are several indicators that may point to a leak in the plumbing that is underneath a slab. First, a homeowner may notice that their water bill has increased. This may take several months to realize. If a water bill remains higher than normal for consecutive months, it may be due to a plumbing leak.
Next, a homeowner may hear water running near the flooring in their home. The sound of running water may be reflective of a slab leak. A homeowner may also note that the flooring within their home appears to be swelling or feels hot to the touch.
A Plumber's Expertise
A plumber will use some of the same visual and audio cues that a homeowner may use, plus will use imaging and detection equipment to determine if a slab leak is to blame for excessive water bills. Small holes within a plumbing section will require the least disruption to a slab during the repair process.
An entire plumbing rerouting process that involves removing the plumbing components and installing new ones in a different location will require cuts to be made through a home's flooring. A slab will also need to have cuts made through it. This type of repair process is invasive and can be costly.
Relining plumbing sections is a way to repair a slab plumbing leak without disrupting the slab and home very much. A plumber can access the ends of the plumbing and use tools to introduce a liner to the plumbing sections that are leaking. A liner acts as a reinforcement and will restore plumbing components to the condition they were in when they were first installed.
Contact a company like John Blitch Plumbing to learn more.