For many homes, leaks from pipes, and plumbing fixtures are a substantial cause of water waste. Unfortunately, not all sources of leaks are obvious as many leaks go unnoticed for years.
Leaking showers can be caused by many things such as worn seals, faulty valves, or bad plumbing installation. They can cause a lot of problems if left unchecked. Call us today if you need help repairing your shower. We don’t recommend waiting for the problem to get worse.
Here are some signs of a leaking shower that you should look out for:
If the tiles in your shower are loose, cracked, or falling off, it may indicate that water is seeping behind them and damaging the wall or floor. The grout and adhesives that hold the tiles may deteriorate over time due to constant exposure to water. Separated tiles can also create gaps that allow water to escape and cause further damage.
Mildew and mould are fungi that thrive in moist and dark environments. They can grow on the shower grout, walls, ceiling, or surrounding rooms if there is a water leak. Mildew and mould can cause unpleasant odours, stains, and health problems such as allergies, asthma, and infections. They can also damage the structure and appearance of your home.
Stains are another sign of water leakage in your shower. They can appear as dark, discoloured, or damp patches on the walls, skirting boards, subfloor, or ceiling below the bathroom. Stains can indicate that water is penetrating the surface and causing rot, corrosion, or rust. Stains can also attract insects and pests that can worsen the situation.
A mouldy or musty smell in your bathroom or adjacent rooms can also indicate a leaking shower. The smell is caused by the decomposition of organic matter by mould and bacteria. This odour can be unpleasant and harmful to your health and well-being. It can also indicate that the leak is severe and has been going on for a long time.
These are some of the signs of a leaking shower that you should be aware of. Looking for these signs can help you further identify the source of the leakage. If you notice any of these signs, you should contact Royal Flush so we can help you inspect and fix the problem.
Shower leaks can happen often. However, this does not make them easy to deal with. The first course of action any property owner should have is to find the source of the leak. Solving a water leak issue isn’t a one-size-fits-all scenario. Every shower leak (no matter how minor its damage) has a different solution since every property is different. As a result, there are a lot of causes of leaking showers, and it is hard to outline all of them. However, here are the more common causes:
A leaky shower head can be caused by a faulty washer, a clogged aerator, or a loose connection. A faulty washer can wear out over time and allow water to drip from the shower head. A clogged aerator can reduce the water pressure and cause water to spray in different directions. A loose connection can allow water to seep through the threads of the shower arm or the shower head.
A leaky shower tray can be caused by deterioration or movement of the tray, sealant issues, or faults with the shower seals. Movement of the tray can occur due to improper installation, insufficient support, or temperature changes. Sealant issues can occur due to poor application, mould growth, or ageing. Faults with the shower seals can occur due to cracks, gaps, or wear and tear.
A leaky mixing valve can be caused by a dripping mixer valve, a faulty cartridge, or a damaged O-ring. A dripping mixer valve can be caused by a worn-out washer, a loose nut, or a corroded valve seat. A faulty cartridge can be caused by mineral deposits, debris, or wear and tear. A damaged O-ring can be caused by ageing, cracking, or stretching.
A leaky water supply can be caused by extreme temperatures, external pressure, weak plumbing, or old pipes. Extreme temperatures can cause pipes to freeze and burst. External pressure can cause pipes to puncture due to soil movement, tree roots, or construction. Weak plumbing can cause pipes to crumble due to the weight of the concrete. Old pipes can cause pipes to erode due to hard water.
A leaky grout can be caused by tiles, cracks, or gaps. Tiles can cause grout to leak due to their porous nature, which allows water to seep through them. Cracks can cause grout to leak due to the expansion and contraction of the tiles or the wall. Gaps can cause grout to leak due to the lack of proper sealing or caulking.
A shower hose is a flexible tube that connects the shower valve to the showerhead, allowing the water to flow. Shower hoses can be made of different materials, such as stainless steel, PVC, or rubber. Shower hoses can leak due to wear and tear, corrosion, kinking, or damage from high water pressure or temperature. Some signs of a leaking shower hose are dripping water, reduced water flow, or visible cracks or holes in the hose. To fix a leaking shower hose, you can either replace it with a new one or repair it with a hose clamp, tape, or sealant.
A mixer tap is a faucet that mixes hot and cold water to the desired temperature and delivers it to the showerhead or the bathtub. Mixer taps can be operated by a single lever, a twin-lever, or a button. Mixer taps can leak due to faulty washers, cartridges, valves, or seals, which can wear out over time or become damaged by hard water deposits or debris. Some signs of a leaking mixer tap are dripping water, low water pressure, or difficulty in adjusting the temperature or flow. To fix a leaking mixer tap, you can either replace the faulty part or clean and lubricate it with vinegar, baking soda, or plumber’s grease.
A shower drain connection is a pipe or a fitting that connects the shower drain to the main drain line. Shower drain connections can leak due to improper installation, loose or broken joints, clogs, or corrosion. Some signs of a leaking shower drain connection are water pooling under the shower, foul odor, or sewer gas escaping from the drain. To fix a leaking shower drain connection, you can either tighten or replace the joint or the pipe or clear the clog with a plunger, a snake, or a chemical drain cleaner.
Shower supply pipes are the pipes that carry hot and cold water from the main water line to the shower valve. Shower supply pipes can leak due to punctures, cracks, or corrosion, which can be caused by freezing, high water pressure, or chemical reactions. Some signs of a leaking shower supply pipe are water dripping from the ceiling, wall, or floor, wet spots, or mold growth. To fix a leaking shower supply pipe, you can either patch or replace the pipe or install a pressure regulator or a water softener to prevent further damage.
Mineral and hard water deposits are the buildup of calcium, magnesium, iron, or other minerals that are dissolved in the water. Mineral and hard water deposits can cause leaks in showers by clogging the showerhead, the mixer tap, the shower hose, or the shower supply pipes, reducing the water flow and increasing the water pressure. Some signs of mineral and hard water deposits are white, yellow, or brown stains, flakes, or crusts on the shower fixtures or the shower tiled surface, low water pressure, or difficulty in adjusting the temperature or flow. To fix leaks caused by mineral and hard water deposits, you can either clean the shower fixtures or the shower tiled surface with vinegar, lemon juice, or a commercial cleaner or install a water softener or a filter to prevent the buildup.
Solder connections are the joints that connect the shower supply pipes or the shower fixtures with a metal alloy called solder. As these connections get older, they can cause leaks in showers by weakening, cracking, or corroding their connection over time, which can be caused by thermal stress, electrical stress, or chemical reactions. Some signs of aging solder connections are water seeping from the joints, discoloration, or oxidation of the solder. To fix leaks caused by aging solder connections, you can either re-solder the joints with a soldering iron and a flux or replace the joints with new ones.
There are several common causes and solutions for a leaking shower, which can be grouped into four categories: waterproofing, shower joints, shower heads, and shower screens.
Keep your shower from leaking by waterproofing it with a protective layer. Properly applied, a membrane or sealant helps preserve the tiles and grout and prevents mold and mildew from growing. By maintaining your tiles and grout, you can prolong their lifespan and keep them looking like new.
It’s important to regularly inspect the joints where your shower fixtures, like faucets, valves and drains, connect to the pipes and walls. Look for any signs of damage such as water dripping, discoloration or oxidation. If there is a leak, repair or replace the joint quickly by unscrewing, taping, caulking or soldering it.
Showerheads should be regularly maintained and cleaned to eliminate any mineral deposits or hard water buildup that can clog the nozzles and cause uneven water pressure. Cleaning a showerhead requires a soft cloth, toothbrush, and cleaning solution. If that doesn’t fix the issue, you may need to replace either the gasket or washer inside your shower head by taking it off from the shower arm and replacing with a new one. Alternatively, an entirely new shower head that is compatible with your shower arm may need to be installed.
It’s important to install your shower screen correctly and securely to begin with. Make sure there is enough clearance and slope for the water to drain properly, as well as that it is aligned with the shower tray or floor. Additionally, you should seal all gaps between the screen and wall or floor using silicone or rubber strips. If the leakage persists despite these precautions, replacing the seals along the edges may be necessary.
If the leak is minor, one can employ these methods to fix it without needing to disrupt the tiles. However, serious or mysterious leaks should be handled by a professional plumber who can properly address and repair the issue.
The annoyances that a shower leak can bring to you depend on how badly the leak is damaging your property. It is recommended to take care of shower leaks as soon as possible; the problem will always get worse. Waiting to fix your leak can also mean paying more money in the future. Shower leaks can also raise raise your water bill and cause a ton of other issues. Eventually, some leaks reach the substructure of your property, which could require a complete bathroom floor remodel. This is because water in wooden foundations invites pests and rot and can be very difficult to fully eradicate. The last thing you want is a mold problem in your bathroom.
So if you’re experiencing a shower leak, call us here at Royal Flush. We can quickly diagnose your problem, and can efficiently and effectively fix any leak.