Internal Water Supply
Slab Leaks and Water Line Repair
Over time, the plumbing system in your home may develop what’s known as a “slab leak” in the foundation. Leaks on the “pressure” side of your foundation can usually be identified quickly, but if left undiscovered may cause extensive damage.
A slab leak poses a serious threat to your foundation. Cabinets, floors, and other items may sustain water damage, and you’ll also incur higher bills as a result of the wasted water. The best way to ensure long-term structural stability is by having a team of experts examine your piping and plumbing system on a routine basis.
Copper Piping Repair and Replacement
In the Phoenix area, most homes are constructed with the internal water supply running through the slab (concrete foundation) and up through the walls. Over time, copper piping may develop a leak. Leaks in this piping that occur below the foundation are identified as a ‘slab’ leak.
There are multiple methods that can be used to repair a leak, and our goal is to fix the problem in the least destructive way possible. We will normally recommend a re-route, in which the copper pipe is capped off at the manifold and rerouted in PEX pipe through the wall, across the attic, and down to the other manifold. This method allows your system to be connected while bypassing the leak.
Used extensively in the late 1970s through the mid-1990s, polybutylene is a plastic resin that reduced costs and increased the ease of piping installation. At one point, this material was even considered the “pipe of the future.” In retrospect, “the pipe that will cause future headaches” may have been a more appropriate description.
Over time, it became clear the plastic used in polybutylene pipes was unable to withstand interactions with common oxidants and disinfectants found in public water supplies, such as chlorine. Repeated exposure to these elements resulted in flaking, microfracturing, and eventually bursting.
Most homes built prior to 1960 have plumbing systems comprised of galvanized steel or iron. The standard in homebuilding for decades, these piping materials eventually would give way to less expensive alternatives like copper, but even today, many homes still have functioning galvanized steel pipes.
When lead pipes were identified as dangerous to human health, they were replaced by iron and steel options. Though they were effective for some time, the inevitable rusting made these metals a less viable option. The answer was galvanized steel – which incorporated a protective layer of zinc to separate pipes from the elements.
Galvanization was thought to be a final solution to piping problems, but unfortunately things like rust buildup, leaks, and health risks due to impurities began to show up in homes that had been outfitted with galvanized pipes decades prior.
In order to preserve the safety of your home’s water supply it’s best to have your leak examined by a professional who’s able to identify potentially-harmful lead build up, and recommend which repair options will give you the highest-quality water supply. Build up in galvanized pipes travels through your water lines, causing clogs and low water pressure. If you are experiencing any of those it is recommended to replace your galvanized pipe before it begins to damage your fixtures moving forward.
Supply Line Water Leaks
Supply lines are the braided stainless steel or flexible plastic tubing which transfer your home’s water from the main line to fixtures like sinks, toilets, washing machines, and hot water heaters. These lines can be susceptible to issues such as limescale buildup or bacterial contamination, but the most common problem is leaking as a result of the pressurization these pipes require.
We recommend regularly checking the lines under your sink, toilet, and hot water heater to identify leaks and corrosion as soon as possible. If you notice an issue, shut off the water to the fixture as soon as possible and call in an expert to evaluate the damage and provide you with repair options.
Do You Need Internal Water Supply Servicing?
Even the most high-quality plumbing systems can wear down over time. Know the signs of damage so you can fix the problem before it becomes worse. Internal water supply problems may result in:
- Extremely high water bills.
- A running meter.
- Musty smells.
- Stained ceilings, walls, or floors.
- Foundation cracks.
- Low water pressure.
No matter the issue, our team at Moon Valley Plumbing has the experience to find the most affordable and effective fix. If you notice any of the signs listed above, or simply want to have an expert look over your plumbing system as a precaution, get in touch by calling 602-253-2600 or contact us online today for more information.