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The True Cost of Leaks: How a Small Drip Can Add Up

Leaky bathroom faucet dripping water.


A leaky faucet can be annoying, but did you realize it can be expensive, too? Catching it early can save you a good chunk of money in the long run.


A drippy sink can waste litres of water, costing you money every single month and possibly even contributing to potential water damage in the future. The truth of the matter is leaks are a small problem that can become a big one if you don't fix them. Whether it's a sink in the kitchen or bathroom that's dripping, you need a specialist to help fix the issue.


Shall we explore what leaks can cost you? Advance Heating and Cooling has the expert advice you need to keep your money in your pocket.


A leaky pipe might not seem like a big deal, but it’s essential that it should be addressed by a plumber right away before the problem gets worse. Truthfully, trusting an expert with the knowledge is a better way to go than DIYing it, because what seems like a simple fix could be a bigger issue—we’ll explore that a bit later.



Small Leaks Can Cause Major Damage

Depending on the cause of the leak, a dripping pipe can get costly, and quick. The amount of water that seeps through the pipe is generally what determines how much money is going to be added to your water bill. For example, a large crack can cost upwards of $500+ per month if you aren’t keeping an eye on it. However, it can cost an additional $20 or less for a small leak, but that amount annually can be up to $240. That’s nothing to scoff at.


While it could be tempting to just ignore a leaky pipe, it can lead to potential damage to your home while also increasing the cost on your water bill. Water damage is nothing to joke about - it can damage your home’s foundation and structure, which costs a lot more than a leaky pipe.


When plumbing leaks drain into the ground of your home, it can eat away at the earth and cause stress on the foundation. In the worst-case scenario create open pockets under your house, causing portions of it to break and sink over time.


Like any potential problem with your faucet, a drip is a common occurrence that can be costly if you ignore it. When you notice a leaky faucet, there are basic tips you can do until you can get a specialist in to make the fix. Shutting off the water supply, for example, using the shut-off valve is a good idea.


Professionals have the tools to repair your sink. So, if you discover a leaky faucet, you can contact the pros at Advance Heating and Cooling. Our team has years' worth of experience and provide budget-mindful solutions to a myriad of plumbing and HVAC needs. This includes something as seemingly small as a leaky sink.



The Pitfalls of Leaky Sinks

In case the overall nuisance isn’t enough, there are many possible problems that can spawn from a seemingly simple leaky sink:

  1. Hot water heater failures are perhaps some of the worst causes of residential water damage. According to recent findings, about 69 per cent of water heater failures were the result of a slow leak or a sudden burst and cost an average of thousands of dollars.
  2. Did you know constant dripping can lead to water pooling around your sink? This can damage the surrounding cabinetry, flooring, and walls. Over time, this can cause mold and mildew growth, further exacerbating the problem.
  3. Even a small leak can waste a significant amount of water over time, leading to higher water bills.
  4. Apart from the financial impact, a leaky sink wastes a precious natural resource. Conserving water is essential for environmental sustainability, so avoiding wasting unnecessary water is a must-do. Environmentally friendly plumbing solutions can go miles to reducing your carbon footprint.
  5. Persistent leaks can put additional stress on the plumbing system, potentially leading to more significant issues down the line, such as pipe corrosion or even burst pipes.
  6. Continuous exposure to water can deteriorate sink fixtures, such as faucets and seals, leading to the need for costly repairs or replacements. This can inevitably cost you more over time.
  7. Mold and mildew growth resulting from water damage can pose health risks, particularly for people with respiratory issues or allergies. If you get sick, that’s not only unfortunate, but can lead to additional financial loss if you have to take time off of work or pay for medications/medical treatment.
  8. Accumulated water on the floor around the sink can create slip and fall hazards, especially in households with children or elderly people.
  9. Stained or water-damaged surfaces around the sink can detract from the overall appearance of the kitchen or bathroom, affecting the aesthetics of the space.


Repairing the Problem

When you have a leaky sink, the first step to getting it fixed is finding the actual cause of the leak. Factors in determining this include identifying the type of sink, the location of the leak, how severe the damage is, etc. This is what will ultimately determine the best course of action.


In certain situations, the solution is as simple as tightening a loose faucet or fixing a worn-out washer. In other cases, if the damage to the sink is more severe than expected (i.e. a crack or damaged pipe), it's necessary to have a professional to complete the repairs. There's no reason to try and DIY a project if it's going to further complicate the problem.



What Causes a Leaky Sink?

While talking about a leaky sink sounds like a general one-fits-all problem, several causes can cause your sink to leak. The first step in repairing the issue is understanding the problem, how to fix it, and whether or not you need professional intervention.


Damaged or Worn-out Faucet Washer

When you regularly use a faucet, the washer presses against the valve seat. Consistent friction can eventually cause the washers to wear away, and you'll start noticing leaks around the spout of the sink. This is relatively easy enough to fix by replacing the washer.


Loose Faucet Handles

Packing nuts, adjustment rings and stream screws can all become loose with regular use, causing your sink handle to start dripping. Having someone tighten the packing nut or replace it completely is usually the fix for this issue.


Damaged or Loose Pipes

A very common cause for a leaky sink is in the pipes. This is why it’s good to keep your eyes on early signs of wear and tear around the shut-off valves. It’s generally simple enough to have them tightened with a wrench to hold the valve in place while tightening the compression nut by hand.


Damaged Sink Stoppers

If you notice your sink stopper leaking, it’s pretty much guaranteed you’ll need to replace the entire thing. This requires removing the old stopper, replacing it with a new one, and putting everything together again. It’s a lot of work, but if you call in a professional, they can likely fix the problem within an hour or two, depending on the sink and the damage.



When It’s Absolutely Necessary to Get a Professional Involved

While you can DIY some of these projects, our HVAC experts at Advance Heating and Cooling are here to help when you run into troubles you don’t know how to fix. If you’re looking at a damaged sink and have no idea what to do, don’t go to YouTube or Google to find the fix - it’s time for you to call the professionals.


If your first instinct is to panic when you find a leak, don’t touch it. While you might not have the tools to fix it yourself, calling in the professionals can help eliminate potential damage. In the meantime, you can limit possible damage and accidents by cleaning up as much water around the area as possible. It’s a good idea to sop up the water, cover any furniture at risk of getting wet, and keep the area clear.



When in Doubt, Call in the Professionals

Listen, we understand that there’s concern that calling a professional will make the problem more costly, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. As we’ve discussed, calling in the pros can help prevent the issue from getting worst, and subsequently costing you more to repair in the future. There’s no sense in fiddling with appliances if you aren’t sure what you’re doing - this could just make the problem worse.


HVAC professionals deal with a myriad of plumbing problems every day, so you can trust that the pros at Advance Heating and Cooling have your best interest in mind.


While a leaky sink, at best, seems like an inconvenience, if you leave it alone for too long, serious problems can develop over time. Most importantly, it can cost you and your family money in the long run, and much more. Higher bills, health and safety issues, and the potential impact on the environment are all potential problems that can come from a seemingly small issue.


If you need help determining what the issue is, contact Advance Heating and Cooling for all your custom HVAC solutions.




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Vincent Afrouzi
Name: Vincent Afrouzi
Posts: 57
Last Post: July 10, 2024