How to Detect Common Plumbing Problems for Do-It-Yourself Projects

Plumbing do-it-yourself projects are some of the most common activities conducted in the domestic setting. One of the main objectives for plumbing do-it-yourself projects is to correct common plumbing problems before they are compounded and become expensive to fix. With this knowledge in mind, detecting plumbing problems early is vital for easy and effective projects correct any defects. That said, it is important to note that detecting plumbing problems can be problematic and requires keen attention. Once a problem is detected you can then get your tools and get down to fixing it.

Plumbing DIY

Most drainage problems are characterized by dripping pipes. A leaky plumbing system can easily result into higher water bills and/or extensive damage in the house. One of the recommended methods of detecting leaks within the plumbing system in a house is listening to any dripping sounds. Choose a quiet time in the day or night to conduct this exercise successfully.


Another way to detect hidden leaks in the drainage system is by monitoring the water meter readings and water bills. First you will need to locate your home’s water meter which can either be on the ground outside or attached to an exterior wall. Get a meter reading at a given time and then refrain from using any water from the plumbing system for a reasonable interval. After the given time interval check the water meter reading and compare with the earlier reading. If there is a significant difference given the extent of the time interval taken you can detect whether there is a leak.


Once you have detected a water leak the next task at hand is to identify where the leak is coming from. This task is not as simple as it sounds since indoor plumbing is mostly concealed under walls and paneling. Look out for any puddles formed on the floor in different rooms within the house; water flows along the path of least resistance and settle at the lowest point on the floor. Mold and dampness around walls and floor areas can also indicate a plumbing leak nearby. Once you spot any of these indicators you can feel around the water pipes for wetness to pinpoint the specific spot where the leak is coming from on the pipe. Note that it may be necessary to remove some wall panels to access some water pipes.


When looking for the specific point of a water leak make sure to remember that water pipes may have some wetness on the surface due to condensed moisture from warm indoor air coming in contact with cold water pipes. The area around the pipe may be damp but not indicative of a water leak.


Following the above guide gives you have a better chance of detecting water leaks early and a chance to fix these defects before they are compounded into situations that require professional help.

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