Anytime a homeowner notices a wet piece of drywall, or water stains anywhere near the shower, it is usually an indicator of a serious shower leak. While having a devastating running flow of water originating from the shower would appear to be a major problem, it is the slow, long-lasting drip that produces much more significant damage to the structural integrity of the home. Many of these serious plumbing issues have most likely been happening over an extended amount of time, which can cause serious water damage that needs to be immediately addressed by a licensed and professional plumber.
Investigating the Problem
A quick way to check if there is a leak coming from the shower is to push on any loose tile. A slight push on a piece of loose tile will often give way to a mushy substrate below. If the tiles fall off, or they easily pull off, it will usually expose some type of wet underlayment beneath. Other indicators that there is a leaky shower is when the shower pan appears to not be properly caulked, which might be a result of the caulk drying out, or falling out due to moisture behind it.
Before any new tiling or installation of a new shower pan can be performed, the leak must be located and repaired. A shower repair can be at times very tricky. The water lines are almost always situated behind a tiled area of the shower, and might require the opening of the wall behind it if possible. A plumber will be able to detect the exact location of the leaking faucet. It may be a result of a damaged pipe, worn-out washers, or simply a leaky valve.
Unlike a sink faucet that is connected to individual valves that can be turned off to remove the faucet, a shower faucet is usually installed directly into the plumbing system. Replacement or repair of the faucet usually requires that the water lines to the entire home be shut off and drained before proper repairs can be made.
Upgrading the Valve
In homes that have valves that are 10 or 15 years old, many of them need to be updated. Current plumbing codes require that every newly installed shower valve must have anti-scald components. This helps to regulate the pressure of the water along with its temperature. Its overall advantage is that it eliminates the potential of delivering hot water that is heated to a temperature that is too high for an individual to safely take a shower. Additionally, these valves work to balance the pressures of both the cold and hot supplies. In all, an anti-scald valve has the ability to prevent burning, scalding, and other serious related injuries caused by overheated water.
Hiring a Professional
While an individual or handyman might be able to remove the existing damaged valve and replace it with a new one, this is a job that is best left for Bill Fenwick Plumbing. Our licensed plumbers have all the necessary tools, and years of experience to make the job easy and quick, and we stand behind the work we provide, along with guaranteeing the warranty on all the components we install. Call us today to schedule a consultation.