Atlanta, GA plumbing expert explains how to check for leaks
December 5, 2021 at 4:00 PM
Wrenches being used on a pipe

As a homeowner, there’s a good chance that, at some point, you’ve found yourself dealing with a plumbing leak. Maybe you woke up to a flooded kitchen or there’s a constant drip, drip, drip from the bathroom keeping you up at night. You’ve likely wondered where it was coming from and how bad it might be.

Water leakage in the home can be costly for you, especially if you’re on a water meter. Sometimes these leaks aren’t as apparent until the damage starts to show. That’s why detecting them early is key. At Elite Construction & Renovations, we’re the experts to call when it comes to professional plumbing in Atlanta, GA. Let’s walk you through how to check if you have a leak in your home.

Where do leaks mostly occur?

Your kitchen, bathroom, and basement are the three main areas in your home where leaks are likely to generate. Once you suspect a leak or start seeing the telltale signs — unusually high water bills, low water pressure, damp floors, foul odors — it’s time to go into investigative mode and try to pinpoint the source.

General procedure for identifying leaks in your home

If you’re not sure whether there’s a leak, go to your water meter and take note of the numbers. Shut off all taps in the house. Turn off all the appliances that use water too, such as the washing machine, dishwasher, and sprinkler system. Leave the water meter tap on.

Wait about an hour or two, then check the meter again. Make sure you don't use any water during this period, not even to flush the toilet. If the reading has increased over that period, then it’s likely there’s a leak somewhere in the house.

You’ll need to check the three main rooms carefully to find the source of the leak.

Checking for leaks in the kitchen

Plumbing leaks in the kitchen are mainly found around the sinks and the supply pipes at the base. They could also result from faucet leaks. Remember to keep the faucets turned off during this process.


Examine the lower part of the countertop for any pooling water. Check the base of the tap to see if it’s loose. Sometimes the joint where the faucet meets the countertop can get loose and allow for small amounts of water to seep through.

Test the supply/drain pipe by passing dry cloth across each one, especially around joints and the shutoff valve area. If there’s a leak, you’ll notice small water marks on the cloth.

Checking for leaks in the bathroom/toilet

Toilet tanks are a common source of leaks. A simple way to check is to pour a few drops of food coloring into the tank. You want to color the water just slightly so it’s distinct. Don't flush, instead, wait an hour or so and check the toilet bowl. If the color appears in the bowl, then you know where the leak is coming from.

Look at other potential sources in the bathroom, such as areas where the paint is peeling or where there is constant mold growth. You might not be able to pinpoint the exact source of the leak, but at least you have an idea of where to ask your plumber to look.

Checking for leaks in the basement

Sometimes the leak may be coming from a burst pipe below the ground or behind a wall in the basement. Determining the source of the leak here is not always easy. The most common obvious signs to look for are mold and rotting floorboards. If there’s a water leak, there will also likely be some funky odors emanating from the room.

What to do next

Finding a leak is one thing. Fixing it properly is another. If you notice a leak in your home, call your local plumber right away. Don't attempt to fix it yourself as there’s always the possibility that the leak might become worse.

Need professional plumbing in Atlanta, GA?

Contact Elite Construction & Renovations today! As a full-service home improvement company, we are equipped to address your home plumbing issues and provide lasting solutions. Get in touch now by calling 770-624-9216 or through our contact form.