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What Causes A Slab Leak?

A slab leak is one of the most common causes of water damage in homes and businesses alike. For this reason, it is important to know the usual sources in order to help prevent them. With our handy guide below, you can better keep slab leaks at bay and know what factors to consider when experiencing a leak.


What Exactly Is A Slab Leak?

Before getting into the details, let’s first define what a slab leak is. A slab is the concrete foundation on which your property is built. The water and sewer lines that connect to your property are right below it. Should certain situations cause those lines to break or start to deteriorate over time, they end up releasing the water or sewage out from underneath your property. This is what causes the liquid to leak through to the surface.

What Are The Top Causes A Slab Leak?

As mentioned above, slab leaks happen when the pipes below your property’s foundation give way. The most common causes for this occurrence include:

#1 Improper Construction

The number one cause of slab leaks is usually improper installment of pipes, or the use of low quality pipes. Through improper installment, there is a high chance that the material will end up getting kinked, bent, or dented, which makes it more susceptible to bursting or breaking.
Moreover, pipes made of copper or galvanized steel are more prone to corrosion, and it is not recommended to use these for construction.

#2 Pressure From External Environments

Understandably, if there is too much water pressure flowing through pipes that are deteriorating, they would be more susceptible to breaking. Apart from water pressure, the shifting of soil can also add pressure to the lines. Some of the most common causes of soil shifting include:

  • Earthquakes
  • Underground streams
  • Soil erosion
#3 Poor Water Chemistry

Not only is the pressure of your water important to maintain, but its pH level is just as crucial. If the water is too acidic (also known has hard water), or too alkaline (also known as soft water), your pipes will be more susceptible to corrosion. Your water’s pH level should stay between 6.5 and 8.5 to prevent slab leaks and other water damage.

#4 Abrasion

Pipes will tend to rub against concrete, gravel, other pipes, or other materials that it comes into contact with. This friction can cause them to gradually deteriorate and wear down in time. This is most especially relevant in hot water pipes since they tend to extend as they heat up. The abrasion can eventually cause leaks and cracks in the system.

#5 Wear and Tear

With extended periods of pressure, exposure to poor water chemistry, abrasion, and overall usage, pipes will most likely corrode over time. The best way to prevent early wear and tear of your pipelines is through regular maintenance and check-ups by professionals.

What To Do When You Have A Slab Leak?

Fixing a slab leak requires the experience and skills of a trained professional. Not only will hiring an expert remedy the situation fast, but they can also achieve it in a safer and cleaner manner.

Experiencing slab leaks or looking to get a preventative check-up? Contact Guardian Plumbers today!

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