Santa Fe Slab Leak Detection
What is a slab leak?
A slab leak, also called a foundation leak or concrete slab leak, is a water leak in the pipes under the concrete foundation of your home or business. This type of leak can cause significant damage to a building’s structure and lead to the development of mold. It’s important that foundation leaks are repaired as soon as possible by a licensed professional to prevent further damage.
What Causes Slab Leaks?
If the foundation shifts, the pipes can move as well, which could cause them to pull apart, crack, or break. Foundation movement can be due to Santa Fe’s unique soil expanding and contracting with the changing weather or poor-quality foundation repairs.
Corroded copper or cast iron pipes
Over time, water and chemicals in and around pipes can cause them to break down or rust. Common causes include the use of water softeners and cleaning solutions. Corrosion can also happen when the water velocity in the pipes is too high, if pipes are sitting in wet soil, and where copper pipes come into contact with the steel rebar in the concrete foundation.
Pipes that are broken or cracked by tree roots
Poor installation of sewer lines or incoming water lines
What are the Symptoms or Problems of a Slab Leak?
Because slab leaks happen below the foundation of your home or business, you may not notice signs of a leak until water has built up and already caused damage. If you notice any of these things, you may have an under slab leak.
Water bill is unusually high
Unfortunately, this is usually how many home or business owners discover they have a leak in their water supply line. Even a small “pinhole” leak can waste over 10,000 gallons of water in just a month.
Excess water around the foundation
Unfortunately, a sewer line can leak under the foundation for years before being noticed. With the expansive soils in New Mexico, a sewer leak could cause the soil to swell. You may notice wet flower beds or soggy dirt around the building’s foundation. Over time, all that water can cause the slab to erode.
Structural damage to the building
If enough water is present, New Mexico’s expansive soil can swell up enough to actually lift a building. When this lifting, or heaving, is due to a water leak, you’ll see the foundation buckle. Cracks in floors or walls, floors that are uneven, or doors dragging on the floor are all signs that there could be a water leak under your building’s concrete slab.
Sound of running water
If you can hear water running through the pipes when there isn’t any water being used, that’s a good sign that there could be a leak.
Damp or warm spots on floor
When there’s a leak under the slab, water can seep up through the concrete and onto your flooring. Wet floors, carpet, or baseboards are all possible signs of a leak. Mildew under your flooring is another indicator. If areas of the floor feel warm or even hot, you could have a hot water line leaking out under your foundation.
Remember, these problems will only get worse with time, so it’s important to call the professionals at James’ Plumbing & Heating as soon as you suspect a slab leak. We’ll find and fix the leak, so you can be sure your home or business is a stable, safe, healthy place to be.
Slab Leak Detection
Before a leak can be fixed, we have to confirm that there is a leak, and find exactly where it’s located. James’ Plumbing & Heating starts investigating a slab leak by visually inspecting your property for the signs listed above. Based on this evidence, we can usually determine whether the source of the leak is more likely to be a sewer pipe or water supply line. Then we can begin the actual testing.
Detecting leaks from a sewer line
To check for sewer line leaks, hydrostatic testing is used. A special ball is placed in the main sewer line and inflated until it’s big enough to plug the line. Then we attempt to fill the entire system with water. After 20 minutes, if the lines can’t be filled or they’ve lost water, there’s a slab leak. Once we’ve confirmed a sewer line leak, we have to figure out where it is. We use a special camera to go into the sewer lines and inspect them visually. We can also perform a leak isolation test, which involves filling different sections of pipe with water to see if it will hold.
Detecting water supply line leaks
A pressure test checks for leaks by checking the water pressure delivered from the main supply at the street and comparing it to the pressure in the lines after the supply from the street is turned off. If the pressure in your home’s water lines drops, there’s a leak somewhere.
After a water supply line leak is confirmed, the location is determined by first checking faucets and toilets for drips and leaks. If there are none found, acoustical listening devices can be used to detect the sound of leaking water under the building.
James Plumbing also recommends slab leak detection in these situations:
- Before any foundation work is started
- After foundation repair has been completed
- Before you buy a home
- Once a year in areas where foundation cracks are common
Once we’ve discovered where the leak under your slab is located, we can fix it.
Need a Plumber for a Fix? Contact Us!
Fixed the problem
MJP - Santa Fe, NM
Needed water heater recirculating pump on brand new tankless . These guys said the pump was already there, just needed a part. Previous plumber wanted to sell me the entire new system. These guys were honest and got the job done. Educated me on the app on how to run my new pump. Completely satisfied with their work
Richardscheinin - Santa Fe, NM
James Plumbing does a great job - always friendly and efficient. Nice guys. Real pros. I trust them.
Lise - Santa Fe, NM
Dominic diagnosed my plumbing problem right away and fixed it within the promised time frame. He was very pleasant, knowledgeable, arrived on time, and cleaned up after. I paid with a charge card and had the invoice emailed to me. Great Service!
Great service, professional workmanship, polite workers.
Davidhoff - Santa Fe, NM
Professional, Friendly Service.
Rebecca - Santa Fe, NM
Isaac was so professional and friendly. He explained and showed me everything that needed to be done. Their prices were reasonable and fair. I will use their services again and will recommend them to friends and family.
Friendly and Thorough
Gabrielle - Santa Fe, NM
I was very pleased with Dominic’s willingness to listen to my concerns and investigate the situation. He did a quick and complete repair with grace. Thank you Dominic and James’ Plumbing.
Saved us $19,000
Pam - Santa Fe, NM
So grateful Issac was able to come over on short notice to give us his assessment of a bad leak in our utility room. Another plumbing company told us we needed a new boiler (which we didn’t) and quoted $10-$22k depending on which boiler and waterheating system we went with. Issac fixed everything same day - we have hot water again and have several weak points in the system repaired for a tiny fraction of what the other company quoted. So glad I got a second opinion!
Pat - Santa Fe, NM
I have had a leaky faucet for over a year, decided call James Plumbing this morning. Dominic and Thomas arrived at noon to fix the faucet. These young men were very knowledgeable and replaced the faucet. They found my drain pipe leaked also (I suspected that) and they replaced it too. Thank you Dominic and Thomas for a job well done.
Kristy - Santa Fe, NM
Service was timely and efficient. Thomas was very knowledgeable.
Great service all around
Claire - Santa Fe, NM
Isaac and Thomas completed our job in a short amount of time and were very professional. At the completion of the job, Isaac troubleshooted an issue that could occur with our boiler. He even had the part on hand, and replaced the part, saving us another service call in the future. All in all, a great job by both Isaac and Thomas! We will definitely continue to use James Plumbing for our plumbing needs.
Installed 3 boilers and water heater
Installed cross over tee and new filter for tankless water heater
Unclogged shower drain
Replace sewer line in Santa Fe
Servicing swamp cooler in Santa Fe
Installed new kitchen facet, garbage disposal, and air gap
Flushed out water heater and misc work
Main sewer line backed,unclogged main line
Removed and replaced one kitchen facet
Replace one kitchen facet and miscellaneous work