People tend to think of leaks in terms of the amount of water wasted and how much they add to our water bill. Leaks are normal. Leaks are a part of every home and business. Sometimes it’s a roof leak, a drainage issue, or just a bathroom faucet that won’t stop dripping. We often choose to just live with these minor inconveniences, but even the little things can add up over time. According to the EPA, ten percent of homes in the U.S. have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more of water per day. Most of these are found to be leaking faucets, toilets, or kitchen faucets. Even a faucet that only drips ten times per minute can end up wasting more than 500 gallons in a year.
The Risks of Unfixed Leaks
However, if these plumbing leaks–as well as leaks in roofing or siding–are left unattended for a long period of time, serious problems can arise. Leaks don’t fix themselves, nor do they just stay the same. If not dealt with, leaks grow and become worse over time. Eventually, a simple showerhead leak can allow water to collect where plumbing meets the wall, or near a damaged seal on the edge of a tub or wall.
When water leaks from a faucet, showerhead, roof, or siding into the wall of a home, it can begin to grow mold in that area within 48 hours of the water being introduced. If left unattended, that accumulation of moisture will spread through walls and flooring, creating an environment ripe for mold to grow and feed on over time. The majority of this process is out of sight where it’s easy to miss. By the time it becomes easy to see, you may have damage running throughout multiple rooms or even floors of your home or business.
Leak Detection and Inspection
Leak detection for basic in-home appliances and faucets can be easily conducted by a homeowner or property manager, just by conducting occasional visual inspections of seals throughout a unit, kitchen and bathroom appliances, and all sources of running water. Most appliance and faucet leaks can be fixed by simply tightening fasteners, or replacing seals or other small parts that have worn out over time and with use.
However, many leaks that can result in serious damage to your home can be very difficult to pinpoint, or to even notice the existence of in the first place, such as a roof leak that slowly causes rot through attic spaces and the rest of the roof. IR Environmental offers leak detection and moisture testing services that will discover and pinpoint all existing leaks, and determine exactly what must be done to fix the issue and keep your home and all its inhabitants safe and healthy.
Our moisture testing uses digital moisture meter readings to pinpoint not only where moisture is stemming from, but also how far the leak has spread, what areas have been damaged by the leaking water, and the severity of the damage. We also use infrared thermal cameras to investigate areas difficult to evaluate with the naked eye, to make sure that absolutely no damage is left unnoticed that could eventually cause further damage in the future.
Many don’t realize the importance of dealing with water leaks. The cost of professional leak detection and repair encourages many property owners to ignore and neglect ongoing problems, or to implement cut-rate fixes that only delay inevitable damage. How a homeowner deals with the leaks that they find–or don’t look for in the first place–will ultimately determine the difference in not only how much money it costs them, but also how safe their home is, and the people in it.