How Plumbing Leaks Can Lead to Foundation Damage

Plumbing Leaks

Foundation damage is one of the most expensive and dangerous conditions affecting your home. Chief among the causes for foundation damage is water damage, most significantly plumbing leaks, which can slowly erode your home’s foundation without you even noticing. But how do plumbing leaks cause these problems, and what can you do to stop them? Join us below as we provide you with the knowledge you need to combat plumbing leaks and when you should call a professional for foundation repairs.

How Plumbing Leaks Can Damage Your Foundation

  1. Concrete Erosion: The number one cause of foundation damage is the erosion of the concrete materials that create a rock-solid base for your home. Like most rock, concrete can be broken down by a slow, steady water drip over time. You need only look at things like the Grand Canyon to see the power of water erosion. Foundational cracks in your home are like miniature canyons, splitting apart the bedrock beneath your walls as the water pulls apart the set molecules of your home’s base.
  2. Soil Erosion: Your foundation is more than just the concrete base beneath your floorboards. It relies on a complex relationship between the home and the surrounding soil that keeps your home from sinking. When a plumbing leak drains into the ground around your house, it can eat away at the earth, cause stress on your foundation, and, in the worst cases, create open pockets beneath your home, causing portions to break apart and sink over time.
  3. Problems Outside Of Foundational Damage: While we are focused on foundational problems in this article, a plumbing issue can also destroy your floorboards or personal belongings. Sinking or sagging floorboards, rotting foundational wood, and puddles in your basement can put more pressure on the foundation than is necessary as the wood expands. Finally, a plumbing leak and standing water can increase the likelihood of dangerous mold growing within your home.

Things That Can Indicate A Leak Is In Your Home, Even If You Don’t See It

  • Rising Water Bills: If you use the same amount of water you have always used at home, but your water bill starts to fluctuate and increase, it may mean that water is leaking somewhere beneath your home.
  • Loss Of Water Pressure: When your faucets, hoses, and showerheads stop working optimally, it could indicate a leak, as pressure differences are often not caused by blockages. This means you are paying for water being lost somewhere within your home’s plumbing and is likely damaging your foundation.
  • Standing Water In Your Home Or Basement – Water that is pooling in your home or basement is obviously coming from somewhere. Finding the source of any water leak is imperative to prevent further damage.

When To Call A Foundation Repair Professional

Some leaks can be prevented with DIY foundation repair; however, they should be addressed rapidly, as such problems tend to grow if not fixed in a timely manner. If you have noticed cracks in your foundation, especially beneath pipes or other plumbing equipment, you will need more than just a plumber. However, not all foundation problems are created equal. Thin vertical cracks are often not a cause for worry, and fixing a broken or leaky pipe can save it from growing further. Yet, if you start to notice cracks with a width and depth of over 1/4 inch, or any horizontal cracking, it is time to consult a foundation repair professional.

If You Have Plumbing Related Foundation Issues, Call Tom’s Basement Waterproofing Today

Once you have fixed the plumbing issue, the work still needs to be finished. Foundation problems can worsen over time, even if they are minor and a leak is promptly repaired. Call Tom’s Basement Waterproofing today at (586) 776-7270 to schedule a foundation repair assessment and ensure your home is protected.