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Naturally, there are the straightforward to identify continued drips from a tap that may have a damaged thread or tap but it’s the without detection leaks that, more frequently than not, will cause the most issues and cost the most re lost water, money and inconvenience. These undetected leaks will, over time, cause structural damage as well as lead to mold growth.
There are all kinds of reasons for undetected leaks : maybe damage was unintended such as a nail or screw being pushed through a pipe when hanging a picture. Maybe plumbing joints have not been sealed correctly or pipes have simply corroded with age. New buildings tend to ‘stretch’ during their first few years too, that might cause undue tension on fixed plumbing. At least issues with new houses are normally covered by a builders guaranty.
The four easy to identify giveaway appearances of a unnoticed leak are dampness ( especially on walls ), tiny pools of water on the floor, a sour smell and or mold.
Mold could cause major health issues and will spread quickly if it’s not dealt with properly, becoming more expensive to remedy as it does so.
Dampness on walls routinely means the structure of your home is being degraded fast. Structural damage to non load-bearing walls is routinely not so gigantic an expense to deal with but damage to load-bearing walls and structures can be extremely expensive to repair not to mention involve a major upheaval in living arrangements so the earlier that issues are identified, the better.
If you need to spot any of the indications of undetected issues, you must call in an expert at the earliest possible time. Any qualified plumber or home inspector / surveyor should quickly be in a position to confirm the existence of any major problems and even if no issues are detected, paying a tiny call-out fee to a plumber has got to be worth the reassurance it’ll bring. If you have home insurance, the cost of any repairs due will typically be covered and if you’re a renter, your landlord will be responsible for the expenses of repair, which are possibly also insured anyhow.
On a final note for potential homebuyers, it is always worth paying a little additional for a full structural survey, where potential plumbing issues should be identified. Investing in such a rigorous home inspection almost always pays dividends in identifying possible issues.
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