Looking for burst pipe symptoms? Here are common signs of a burst pipe under the house.
Plumbing installations in homes serve key functions.
Such installations include tanks, valves, and pipes, among several other fixtures. They convey water clean water into homes while some transport or channel out wastewater from drains, and toilets for treatment.
These plumbing fixtures sometimes fail or malfunction due to clogs, breakage, and other causes.
For a component of the plumbing system such as the pipe, this could come under much pressure exerted by plant roots, corrosion, sagging, soil movement, and the likes.
When broken, the pipe’s content spills out or empty into the soil. This could lead to groundwater pollution (in the case of sewer line failure) or even sinkholes that could destroy your home.
Fixing A Broken Pipe Problem Begins by Finding it
When a pipe burst occurs beneath a home, most homeowners are oblivious of the problem until it worsens. Being unaware is no fault of theirs because they’re untrained in identifying plumbing issues.
At best, the homeowner will notice anomalies that require the attention of a professional plumber.
How To Tell If A Pipe Burst Underground
To be certain that you’re dealing with a burst pipe below your home’s foundation, you’ll need to know the signs to look out for. There are several of them ranging from flooding, sputtering, dirty water, odors as well as water stoppage.
There’s also a possibility of mold problems developing as well as fluctuating water pressure. The sooner such a problem is identified the better.
Water damage is halted, thus preventing it from worsening.
One of the easiest ways to spot or identify a burst pipe is when flooding occurs. This is a rare occurrence that only happens when pipes beneath your home are broken.
When it does break, water continues to flow, thus flooding and pooling around the lower areas of your home.
Usually, the worst-hit area in the basement and other lower points. This isn’t rocket science at all. Whenever such areas are seen to be flooded, the likely reason is due to a burst pipe beneath your homes’ foundation.
Here, DIY repair isn’t an option. You’ll need to call a licensed plumber.
Burst pipes below a home’s foundation create all sorts of problems including sputtering. Sometimes when pipes get broken, they do not disintegrate completely.
As a result, the air gets into the pipe which then reacts at different points or fixtures by sputtering and spitting.
To be doubly sure, you’ll have to allow or leave the faucet opened for a short period (usually a few minutes). When the air clears out and water flows normally, it may just be a minor issue or no problem at all.
However, when such spitting and sputtering continues indefinitely, it’s a sign that the line under the house is broken.
Dirty or Discolored Water
At its early stage, a burst or damaged pipe below your home’s foundation draws in the dirt through the open cracks on the pipe. What results is a situation where muddy or discolored water flows into your home.
This may come alongside sputtering and spitting. When it does, the only logical explanation will be a burst pipe.
However, this cannot be determined with certainty without further investigation. Of course, only a licensed plumber will do a good job of diagnosing the problem. Using such dirty water is impossible.
You’ll need to have it fixed as quickly as possible to prevent further moisture damage.
Asides from water coming into a home, there’s wastewater being taken out to the central sewer or the sewage tank.
Such pipes could be ruptured. When it does, it creates all sorts of problems including odors around your home. But that’s the least of your problems.
Smelly sewage water escaping from a burst pipe seeps further down to rejoin groundwater which leads to contamination.
Sewer gas and odors are never mistaken as they have the characteristic rotten-egg smell given off by hydrogen sulfide gas among others.
Apart from such smell being unpleasant or foul, inhaling it may actually lead to health problems such as irritation of the respiratory system among other things.
Urgent action will have to be taken to fix the broken pipe before the situation worsens.
Water Stoppage or Seizure
It’s common to experience a stoppage of water flow when there’s a burst pipe.
This isn’t usually tied to disconnection of such utility due to unpaid bills or scheduled interruption for maintenance work. It mostly occurs without a reason.
Whenever this is observed, it’s a sign that your plumbing lines could be damaged.
However, it’s not advisable to rush to conclusions. To be certain, consider contacting your utility company to find out if there’s an outage in your area. If there isn’t, it’s a confirmation that your pipes could be having issues.
There’s only one way to find out; call a licensed plumber for an inspection.
Increased Mold Growth
Mold growth is known to be most common in areas with a lot of moisture.
When you notice a sudden appearance of mold in addition to rapid growth around your basement area, it’s a sign you might be having a burst pipe that requires urgent repairs.
Like the others listed above, there’s no way of knowing for sure whether the symptom being observed is solely due to a burst pipe. To get to the root of the problem, the services of a licensed plumber will prove invaluable.
Fluctuating Water Pressure
Irregular water pressure isn’t a good sign at all. This is evident when water is seen to be coming out in trickles and suddenly flowing at full blast.
Such irregular and unexplained fluctuations are signs that plumbing lines beneath your home are broken.
Such pipes will need to be fixed or replaced depending on the level of damage. As always, we recommend you hire the service of an expert.
It’s Possible to Notice Multiple Symptoms
More than one of these symptoms discussed above can be observed. For such situations, the more the number of symptoms appearing the better it helps with the diagnosis of the problem.
In other words, they easily confirm your suspicions of having a burst plumbing line below your house.
The signs discussed above are mostly related to burst pipes under homes. However, there’s never a way of confirming unless a further assessment of the problem is performed preferably by an expert.