When You Have a Water Main Leak
If you think you may have a water main leak on your home’s water service, below, you will find what to do. You see, the main water line is the source of water supplied to your home. Then the water main is the line that connects your home’s water supply and the public’s. If your main water line is not working, you will not have a water supply in your home. No one wants that!
In this scenario, you should hire the best plumbing services to fix your main line. A frequent misconception is that every water main leak will result in a loss of water pressure. Even if a repair is needed, it is less common to have a loss of pressure.
Leaks occurring in the main service line are often no different than having a sink or other plumbing fixture running in your house. It typically does not result in a water pressure decrease.
The information below will help you decide whether to have a professional perform water main repair work.
If you detect a leak, first thing is to shut off your water main.
If you don’t know how to, call your local city or county. Then, if they were not successful in helping you shut off your water main, call a plumber as soon as you can.
The sooner you catch a leak, the more time you have to avoid damage to your property and potentially neighborhood properties as well. Call Flow Pros Plumbing to help.
A Few Symptoms of a Water Main Leak
Do you hear a bubbling or hissing sound coming from your home’s walls, floor, or ceiling? It may actually be a pipe that has burst. Remember, not all water leaks result in a loud hissing sound. They can be very quiet, and often it is better to check for bubbling.
Another sound you can listen for is the dripping of water, especially in odd places where there is no drain.
As earlier stated, your main water line runs from the public water supply directly.
Suppose the main water line leaks, one of the symptoms to note is dirty or discolored water. If there is a leak, the water will flow out into the streets through the broken or cracked pipe. Unfortunately, dirt and debris will make their way into the water system contaminating your home’s water supply.
Here is something you can do. Homes have an average amount of money spent on water every month. If the amount increases drastically, you should try to backtrack and consider your recent water usage.
- Was there an event where you left the water on for too long?
- Perhaps the hose was left on outside?
- Have you had anyone staying in your home using extra water?
- Did the yard need extra water that month?
If none of those scenarios make sense of the high-water bill, compare the higher month with the bill for the next month. It might be a sign of a main water line leak if it’s still on the high side.
Check Your Water Meter to Determine Leaks
Here are the steps to checking your water meter:
- Turn off all the water used in your house (sinks, washing machine, water softener, dishwasher, irrigation system, pool pump) and grab a screwdriver or similar tool with a flat head.
- To find your water meter, look on the outside of the home. Check in front of your house in the grass near the sidewalk and/or street. There you should find the meter in a small underground box and a rectangular meter cover made of metal, cement, or plastic.
- Lift the cover using the screwdriver or other tool.
- Now, take the meter cap off and look for the flow indicator. It is a small dial, a wheel, or a triangle. If nothing is moving, there’s no leak, but if the flow indicator is spinning and all water sources are turned off- that is a problem.
- Finally, close the meter cap to protect the lens, carefully replace the meter cover and call Flow Pros Plumbing immediately.
More Than One Meter in The Box?
There may be two meters in your meter box. One meter belongs to your neighbor, and one belongs to you.
Do you have an irrigation meter and a house meter? You can tell if you look over your water bill. Then, simply, turn on your irrigation system to locate the irrigation meter.
If you share a meter box with your neighbor and both meters are not moving, turn your water on to see which meter is yours– it might not be the one closest to your house.
What if you still can’t tell which meter is yours? Find the meter numbers on the meter cap and compare those numbers to the set on your water bill.
More Information You Should Know
As a home or business owner, leaks can fall under your responsibility or the county’s, depending on where the leak occurred. When it falls onto you to fix a water main leak, it’s essential to have a trusted plumber who understands the importance of a big job like this.
Leaks in underground pipes can be due to various factors, including:
- Old rusty pipes
- Chemicals in the water
- Normal wear and tear that just comes over time
- Electoral currents
- Poor installation
- Driving over the lines with cars or heavy equipment.
- and more
In most cases, water puddles in your home mean you have significant issues with your main water line. These puddles may start as water leaks in and around the sink. In this case, check and see if something is wrong with your sink.
Not as evident as a water puddle in the house, water puddles in the yard can be a bit harder to find if there is a disrupted water line. However, suppose it is a main water leak problem. In that case, the water puddles will likely be relatively large and move to the streets, your driveway, or your yard. The only thing to look for would be a wet or squishy spot in the grass.
Bottom line, the moment you see water puddles outside your home without a source, chances are you have a significant plumbing issue. If this is the case, it’s always best to call an expert to diagnose and fix the problem quickly.
Will I notice a broken water main?
In some rare cases, you may notice reduced pressure when turning on the shower or sink faucet in your home. A water main break often causes water leaks, which in turn may cause running water or standing water in the street.
How long will it take to repair the water main leak?
It can take a few hours to a few days to completely repair a water main break. The amount of time depends on the break size, the type of environment it is in, and where the gap is located.
For example, if roots are in the way, that can take extra time. But Flow Pros is equipped to handle that potential obstacle. We do our best to have water main leaks repaired and completed between four to eight hours.
Another thing that may delay the repair is the location of the break. A water main that is deep inside the ground or under another utility will cause this job to take longer. Still, it’s nothing that can’t be fixed.
After a water main is repaired, a reddish discoloration can be seen in the water– but do not worry. That reddish tint is caused by small amounts of iron compounds flushing out of the system. You can eliminate the discoloration by running cold water for a few minutes through a tap without an aerator.
What do plumbers do to fix a water main leak?
The professionals here at Flow Pros isolate the pipe by shutting off valves and temporarily placing the water supply out-of-service until the repair is made. After the broken pipe has been repaired or replaced, it is flushed before connecting it to the new system.
What to Expect After Flow Pros Plumbers Have Left
There are multiple symptoms of a main water line leak. You are better off if you notice them early, but still, you should call a plumber immediately. Of course, it’s best if you hire an expert plumber like the friendly professionals at Flow Pros Plumbing. Not only do we fix main water lines, but we also offer preventive measures to help prevent a leak and other common issues within the home and business. Reach out to your friendly staff today!