The Number 1 Reason Why Your Kitchen Floor Is Hot
Your toes might feel toasty but a warm floor is a reason for concern. Learn why your kitchen floor has a hot spot and how to fix it.
The top cause for a warm kitchen floor is a slab leak. Slab leaks can appear in different forms but all of them are caused by plumbing that leak. When the kitchen floor feels hot then the leaking pipe is probably connected to the hot water heater.
Leaking water can cause a lot of damage to the home. Learn more about how slab leaks happen and what you can do about them.
Slab Leaks Are The Number 1 Reason Why Kitchen Floors Experience Hot Spots
A slab leak describes the situation well. Somewhere in your home, a pipe or pipes are leaking. The water then creeps under the concrete slabs of a floor, spreading until it becomes noticeable. This can happen when you feel a hot spot in tiled or vinyl flooring areas or you see a water stain spreading over a bare concrete floor.
What Type Of Plumbing Parts Most Responsible For Slab Leaks?
There are always exceptions but the most common type of plumbing that cause slab leaks are the copper pipes that run below the foundation of a home. These water pipes ferry both cold and hot water to faucets and other outlets.
It is not uncommon for copper pipes to spring a leak. Here are just some of the conditions and reasons why your plumbing might be dripping.
- Municipal water systems often contain chemicals that, in the long run, damage copper pipes.
- Experiencing high water pressure.
Why Does The Slab Leak Heat My Kitchen Floor?
When you feel a hot spot in your home, whether it is in the kitchen or bathroom, then the water damage is likely being caused by a pipe that is connected to a hot water heater. The warm water spreads under the flooring and heats up the concrete.
What Are The Other Signs Of A Slab Leak?
- The hot spot refuses to go away or returns persistently.
- You notice cracks along the foundation or floor.
- The floor “sweats” or pushes water up through tiles, vinyl or cement.
- Drains are blocked or back up (baths, toilets, and showers can also be affected).
- An odour hangs around the home, possibly smelling musty and dank.
- Your water bill is suddenly higher than usual.
- You can hear a slight hissing noise somewhere in the house.
- Your house has concrete floors and copper pipes.
Can A Slab Leak Be Fixed?
Yes, slab leaks can be fixed. However, it often requires breaking the floor and other heavy-duty stuff. Correcting a leaking copper pipe and damaged concrete is something best left to a professional company. The nature of slab leaks is challenging, even to experienced DIY handymen.
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What Options Are There To Fix A Slab Leak?
Once the leak has been located, the flooring and concrete will be broken with a jack-hammer to reach the pipes. Considering the level of demolition involved, it is important to make sure that the person you hire is an expert. They will be able to break through the concrete with minimal damage.
Once the concrete is out of the way, the repair team will dig through the dirt to locate and fix (or replace) the copper pipe.
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This is a great way to avoid damaging the inside of your home. While an additional bonus is the chance to replace larger sections of plumbing, this method has one major drawback. This is precision work that needs an entire excavation team and perfect planning.
Sometimes, it is best just to take a leaking location out of the equation. That is what re-routing does. The repairs are not focused on fixing the pipe that is leaking under your home (although it is put out of commission so it will no longer work or drip). Re-routing takes the copper pipeline above ground, sometimes through the attic and walls.
Any job that requires ceiling work or installing something high on a wall can be dangerous. Make sure that you use the right ladder for the job.
This method also decommissions the leaking pipeline but instead of going above ground like the re-routing technique, pass-through inserts a smaller line inside the leaking line. The water then runs through this smaller line, eliminating the broken pipe altogether.
How Do I Prevent A Slab Leak?
It can be hard to protect your home from a slab leak. After all, logic demands that you get rid of the copper pipes and that can be expensive. Why get rid of the copper pipes? Because they are more vulnerable to the corrosion, municipal-added chemicals in the water, and water pressures. If you do not want to go through the hoopla of replacing the pipes, you might want to ensure that the water pressure in your home is not too high.
How Do I Test The Water Pressure?
Testing your home’s water pressure is easy and inexpensive. You only need to buy a hand-held pressure water gauge if you do not already have one.
Step 1: You are going to use your outdoors hose bib or faucet. The one you use to attach the garden hose.
Step 2: Make sure that no water is being used inside the house for the duration of the test. This could result in a false reading.
Step 3: If there is a hose attached to the faucet, it must be removed. For an accurate reading, you must test the faucet and not the hose. (Here are the best garden hose reviews).
Step 4: Open the faucet fully and check the reading. A normal reading is anything between 40 to 60 psi.
Step 5: If the pressure is too high, you need to adjust the pressure regulator or have it replaced.
I Want To Replace The Copper Pipes. What Are My Options?
There are several options that you can consider. The trick is to choose something that is corrosion-resistant and comes with a long lifespan. Two materials that fit the bill are plumbing-grade plastic and stainless steel.
A Quick Overview On Why Kitchen Floors Get Hot
- When a kitchen floor feels hot, the situation is never normal and should be investigated as soon as possible.
- The most common reason for a hot kitchen floor is a slab leak.
- A slab leak happens when copper pipes in the plumbing system spring a leak and the water seeps under the concrete floor.
- If the water is connected to a heater, then the floor will feel hot.
- There are several options to repair a slab leak in the home. But all of them require a professional team to deal with the situation successfully.
- Options include jack-hammering, tunnelling, re-routing, and pass-through.
- You can also avoid a slab leak by replacing copper pipes with more hardy pipes like plastic or stainless steel and ensuring that your home’s water pressure is not too high.