3 Common Causes of Household Plumbing Leaks

No one likes discovering a plumbing leak! Whether it’s drips from a basement pipe or a soggy, discolored ceiling, the discovery brings feelings of fear and dread to most people. If you find yourself in such a situation and need leak repairs in Austin, you might be asking yourself what causes household leaks in the first place. And you might wonder if there are small changes you can make now that could lower the likelihood of leaks later. Here are a few common causes of household plumbing leaks and a few changes you can make to help avoid them.

Old Pipes

This one’s a no-brainer, but as pipes age, they can begin to wear out. Everything wears out eventually, and the older your pipes, the more likely they are to leak. To add insult to injury, older homes might be plumbed with materials (like galvanized steel) now considered inferior.

Tip: There isn’t much you can do proactively in this situation. Just be aware of the age of your plumbing, and if you need leak repairs in Austin due to old pipes, select a modern, long-lasting option.

Broken Seals

Your plumbing system is full of seals, including at the water connections of all appliances. These can sometimes wear out or break, causing a leak. If you have a leak near an appliance, don’t assume the appliance needs to be replaced without checking the seals first.

Tip: You can easily check all visible seals from time to time for signs of damage or degradation. Many of these are easily serviceable, too. If one shows signs of damage, have it replaced (or do it yourself) before it causes a leak.


A partially or fully clogged pipe can cause apparent leakage. Usually it’s actually water backing up into a drain, but if you’re not home when it happens you might not know where the water came from right away. Under extreme circumstances a clogged line could cause a pipe to burst. Depending on the way your home is plumbed, this could lead to very visible leakage. Clogs in other, less expected places can also cause trouble. Clogged gutters in some cases could cause water damage, and a clog in your air handler’s drain pan could create a mess in your attic.

Tip: Some clogs are inevitable, but a little common sense can help reduce your chances. Don’t put grease down your kitchen sink, keep your gutters clean, and make sure you have a drain pan float switch installed.

These tips should reduce your chances of springing a leak, but if you find yourself in need of leak repairs in Austin, give Christianson Air Conditioning and Plumbing a call.


I did not quote or cite the links below, but I consulted them to learn about the topic.


Common Residential Plumbing Pipes


8 of the Most Common Causes of Household Water Leaks