A slab leak is a term used for a leakage which occurs in the underground water lines running below your home. If these leakages occur above the floor, they are called pinhole leaks.
Slab leaks occur because of
The primary cause of underground leakage is because of a reaction between the copper pipes and drinking water. The water minerals found in water cause the pipes to corrode, and it starts leaking. At times, other reasons such as incorrect installation, increased quantities of soldering flux and non-reamed pipe can also lead to a slab leakage.
Slab leaks are detected by
Slab leaks can be detected by a number of methods depending on the installation of the system in your home. Generally, the entire system is inspected first and an acoustic survey is conducted. Special equipment is used to listen for the leakage; the problem is close to where the noise is the loudest. Once the location has been detected, it can be repaired with any suitable technique.
Slab leakages are fixed by
Slab leaks can be fixed by any of the four common methods: direct access. Pipe re-route, epoxy restoration and re-piping. Whichever method you choose, the process takes around two days.
In this method, the floor is hammered up and the line is repaired at the stop where the leakage is occurring. This technique is not a great option because the repair does not last long and is not suitable in every circumstance. For instance, if the slab leak is below cabinetry or walls, the method cannot be used.
In this technique, a new water line is installed in your home, but this line runs through the walls and ceiling. It is used as a replacement for the underground line system below your home’s floor. Though this method does work, it can extensively damage the interior surface of your home, which will then have to be repaired. As such, the pipe re-route method is used only when line with a leakage is short or epoxy restoration cannot be done.
In this process, the leaking line is first disconnected from the water system. This line is then dried up completely, cleaned and treated with a layer of epoxy. The lining hardens up after sometime. Another test is conducted to ensure that the leak has repaired. This repaired line is connected to the system once again.
As the name implies, in this method, a completely new water system is installed. This system usually comprises of non-metallic PEX piping. A lifetime warranty is often available with many professional companies if they use this technique to repair your slab leak.
Slab leak is covered by your home insurance policy
Slab leak is usually covered under a general home insurance policy, but there may be a limit on the maximum coverage offered. Your insurance company can provide you with the details in this regard.