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How to Find a Water Leak Inside a Wall?


Leaking can occur in any home or commercial space. There is also a high chance that leaking can damage your walls and lead to mould and water damage. Given the threat of this problem on the building’s structural integrity, it is recommended to have it fixed as quickly as possible. The best way to handle this situation is by working with an experienced and trusted emergency plumber specialising in leak detection. 

The Local Plumber has been Melbourne locals’ preferred emergency plumbing service provider for over two decades. Our commitment to delivering high-quality plumbing services continues even after more than 20 years in business. With our top leak detection plumbers, we can quickly pinpoint leaks, diagnose what’s causing them and repair them in under an hour.

Steps in Checking a Water Leak in Walls:

  1. Using a moisture metre, check the walls’ moisture levels. A higher than less than one per cent is an indication of leaking.
  2. With an infrared camera, check for cold or wet areas within the walls. A blue or purple reading may signal a possible leak within the walls.
  3. If the aforementioned steps did not help, cut through the drywall to confirm the leaking.

Ways to Check Leaking in Walls 

While it is hard to detect leaking in walls, it is possible to check its existence. Plumbers have come up with several approaches to detecting leaks in walls through the years. These approaches range from the simplest to those requiring unique tools and complicated techniques. 

  • Monitoring the water metre – For homeowners suspecting a leak in their walls, the easiest way to confirm a water leak inside the wall is by monitoring your water metre. Even an untrained individual can do this and here are the steps in checking water leaks in walls through the water metre:
    • Read and record the number shown on the metre. This record will be your baseline in assessing for leaks
    • Shut off all appliances that rely on water, like dishwashers, washing machines and sprinkles
    • Avoid using water throughout the whole property while doing this test. It should be at least three hours to ensure the accuracy of the results
    • Finally, re-read the water metre. If there is an increase, it is likely the property has a leakage somewhere in the building

If checking your water metre is not enough to convince you of a water leak on your wall, our expert 24 hour plumbing repair professionals have tools to confirm the problem. We also have the experience and knowledge to determine whether there is water leakage in walls. The following are some tools they use to check for leaking:

  • Moisture metre – This tool measures the moisture content in materials. It comes into two types, the pin type for checking moisture levels in smaller areas and the pinless edition designed for measuring larger areas. Reading for drywall, concrete, and other masonry would result in less than one percent moisture. You can also buy your moisture metre but be prepared to spend hours checking for water leaks. 
  • Infrared camera – This camera offers significant help when leaking cannot be confirmed with obvious signs like paint bubbling or wall damage. Being quick and non-intrusive are benefits associated with using this tool in confirming leaks. While it cannot tell exactly what’s happening behind the wall, it detects heat coming from the wall and reveals the range of temperatures using different colours. When it displays blue or purple, it is an indication of wet or cold spots. 
  • Cut into the drywall – After exhausting all options, all that’s left is to cut into the drywall. It should be the last option as it is invasive and can create additional damage and further costs. On the plus side, this method reveals what’s happening behind the scene. However, the water stain’s location is not a guarantee that the leakage is happening in the same spot. Our experts recommend precisely locating the water leak before cutting into the drywall.

What Are The Causes of Water Leaks in Walls?

The impossibility of knowing exactly what is happening is the biggest hurdle when leaking happens in walls. But property owners should be aware of possible causes behind leaking in walls. Here are some reasons behind this plumbing issue:

  • Exterior material failures – Pipes do age and become weaker. For older properties, there is an increased chance of faulty plumbing in the building. Owners can double-check if the exterior materials are to blame by going outside and inspecting them. Issues affecting this material include blocked gutters and downspouts, ineffective caulking and deteriorating flashing. Pipes are not the only materials that could contribute to this problem. It could also be caused by damaged sprinkle pipes and improper drainage from french drains or grading that slopes towards the building.
  • Interior plumbing issues – A slight increase in a water metre reading may indicate faulty plumbing. Leaking happens due to worn pipes and other components of the plumbing system. Due to the threat of this issue, it is best to have it fixed as soon as possible.

Signs of Leaking Behind the Walls

While it is hard to tell which is causing the leak, some cases do come with signs that a plumbing issue is happening before your eyes. The following are common indicators of water leaks in walls:

  • A damp wall
  • A warped or stained wall
  • Peeling paint or wallpaper
  • A crack or water stain on the drywall ceiling or the floor
  • Puddle of water on the floor
  • A musty smell

How To Get Rid of a Leaking Wall?

Working with a qualified emergency plumbing service professional is the most recommended option to permanently fix your issue. Leaking inside the walls means damaged pipes and other complications. Due to the complexity of this problem, our expertise helps in easily detecting where leaking is happening and which resolution for water leaks in walls would last a long-time.

Melbourne’s Leading Leak Detection Plumber!

Getting to the root of the issue is only possible when working with a skilled professional. It is the reason many Melbourne property owners prefer to work with our emergency plumbing service team. For over two decades, we have been committed to providing homes, commercial and industrial spaces with the best plumbing solutions in Melbourne. We were able to do so by having fully qualified emergency plumbers in our team and constantly adhering to the requirements set by the Plumbing Regulations 2018. Aside from detecting leaks, we are also experts in blocked drain repair, leaking shower repair and hot water system installation. Contact The Local Plumber  to have a trusted plumber do leak detection on your property today!

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