Water leaks in concrete slabs can cause a lot of damage. The sooner you detect a water leak, the better. However, detecting these leaks is not easy and often by the time you find them, they have already caused significant damage.
The Importance of Water Leak Detection in Concrete Slabs
Some people believe that slab leakages in concrete foundations have little effect; however, this cannot be further from the truth. Water leaks in concrete slabs cause considerable structural damage and compromise the integrity.
Moisture also poses an issue not only due to dry rot but also due to possible hazards such as mould growth. Mould presents health risks when ignored by occupants who may unknowingly breathe it in during everyday activities like cooking, showering, or sleeping.
Therefore, detecting the early signs of water leaks in concrete slabs is of utmost importance. Some common signs to look out for include the following.
1. Cracks in the tiles and grout lines
Cracks are caused by corrosion under high water pressure as well as changes to groundwater levels over time. This can cause soil erosion below it, resulting in heaving due to increased weight on some areas from settlements above ground level.
Cracks in the flooring are not just a sign of aging and deteriorating structure – they also indicate that your building is leaking through cracks or gaps around pipes, sinks, drains, and other fixtures. Make sure to keep an eye out for these cracks as these are probably the most tell-tale sign!
2. Moisture on the floor or walls
Moisture on the floor or walls near a skirting board could be signs of water leaks or within the floor slab. Moisture can be seen as evidence that water is leaking from pipes and seeping through cracks into living areas. You might not notice it right away because these spots are usually isolated to just one area, but if you find moisture accumulating around skirting boards this may indicate that there is an issue somewhere in the walls or floor slab.
3. Mould or moss growth
Mould or moss growth is a clear indicator that there may be moisture seeping through these areas. This can lead to unpleasant odours commonly emitted from a porous material like drywall where the mould has taken up residence after a leak has been left unattended for too long.
Mould also poses health risks due to bacteria found in these types of fungi. An example includes yeast which causes allergic reactions such as asthma attacks or skin infections with symptoms ranging from redness to itchiness.
4. When you hear water running but can’t find it
One tell-tale sign of water leaks is hearing running water, but not being able to find the source. This may sound very mundane, but it can actually be serious when there are unexpected sources of leakage elsewhere in your home or office building such as a leaking roof or guttering. This can cause significant damage before anyone actually knows what has happened.
Preventing Water Leaks in Concrete Slabs
The best time for a concrete slab water leak prevention measure is before construction begins or during site preparation and foundation development. This will help avoid costly repairs later on down the road but should never be done without consulting an expert first.
A few simple steps can go a long way in preventing water leaks and other problems for concrete slabs. One of the best things you can do to prevent these issues from happening is by applying sealant. Sealant such as polyurethane caulk fills any gaps between your flooring tiles to prevent moisture build-up and strain on your floors over time.
However, despite these measures, it can be difficult to spot and prevent water leaks in concrete slabs on your own, which is why it’s important to consult with an expert such as Heatsense Services.
How can Harmuns help?
Whether you are a homeowner or an inspector, knowing the common signs of water leaks in concrete slabs is important for your safety and peace of mind. If you see any changes to the colour, texture, or appearance of your slab’s surface it could be from a water leak that needs to be repaired.
Please contact us on 01753 378569 and we will talk to you about the available options.