Slab Leak Repair

When you know you need a slab leak repair, you have options. We prefer the least invasive, least damage causing options, but the choice is yours. Here is a little more info to help you understand what a slab leak repair plumber can do for you.

Slab Leak Repair

There are several things to consider when it comes to slab leak repair so we want to make sure you have as much information as possible to help you make confident decisions. If you still have questions, don’t hesitate to call Gardner Plumbing at 951-603-3634 any time.

Is Slab Leak Repair Expensive?

The cost of a slab leak repair can vary, depending on the method used to fix the issue, and the extend of the damage. Most repairs run from around $500 up to a few thousand dollars. Yes, this sounds expensive, but the cost you will incur if you do not fix the issue properly can easily triple or quadruple that amount.

When you consider that a full home re-piping can run up to $15,000 or more, the idea of a smaller, localized repair costing only a few thousand may not feel so threatening. We offer a few options of how we can perform the slab leak repair plumbing work, so we can discuss your options with you and help you decide what is best for your situation.

Have you Considered Insurance?

While all insurance companies and policies are different, many of the major insurance companies will cover slab leak repair plumbers to fix an issue that may be more expensive when left untreated.

If they won’t cover the entire cost, it is possible they will at least cover a portion of the expense. A quick call to your insurance company will lead you to the right information. Consider that there are also different methods of slab leak repair, so while one may not be covered, another may.

Keep in mind that some insurance companies also require a full-home repiping after there has been a single slab leak repair incident. You may determine this solution is best from the outset.

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Slap Leak Repair Options

Once it has been determined through a professional slab leak detection that you are in need of slab leak repair plumbing, you should know there are several options of how you may go about making the repairs.

There is a difference in cost, time required to complete the slab leak repair, and perhaps as important as those points, the invasiveness the repairs may impose upon your home. The cost may vary from a few hundred dollars to over ten thousand dollars, but the impact the work may have on your home during the slab leak repair process is certainly worth consideration.

At Gardner Plumbing we prefer the least invasive form of slab leak repair, re-routing, but it’s worth understanding the other ways of doing it in case your home requires a specific type of repair. Here are all of your options:

Spot Repair

In order for a spot repair to be an option, the current damage must be known to exist in only a small, short section of the pipe line. When it can be determined that a single spot is the culprit, a relatively small cut can be made in the concrete directly above the leak, and after removing the damaged portion and replacing it with a new section of pipe, the ground can once again be sealed up and repaired to look like new.

This option of course calls for the temporary removal of the ground covering over the spot. If that is carpet, the entire carpet can be rolled back to reveal the damaged area. If the floor treatment is tile or wood, the work required to expose the concrete and damaged pipe may be more problematic.

The benefit of a spot slab leak repair is the relatively short time frame in which this repair can be made. As long as there are no other leaks, this may be all it takes to fix the problem and get your life back to normal again.

Pipe Lining

An option that some slab leaks allow for is the use of an non-toxic liner that is placed inside of the existing pipe, essentially creating a new internal pipe that can follow the existing piping. This solution, called pipe lining, is a great option when you don’t want to damage the ground where the existing pipe runs. It is not always a viable option, but when it is, this solution can be fast and cause very little issues.

Sometimes referred to as trenchless pipe repair, there are in fact three variations of this solution offering different benefits and shortfalls; Pipe Bursting, Pipe Coating, and Cured in Place Pipe Lining (CIPP) that are all slightly different.

Pipe Bursting

In the Pipe Bursting technique, two access points are created at the beginning and the end of the damaged pipe. A hydraulic tool is then used to pull what’s called a bursting head through the original pipe, causing the old pipe to spread wider, leaving room inside for the new pipe to be placed.

This solution is used for sewer lines, rather than culinary water pipes, as the replacement pipe is oil based to create a slick interior that is highly resistant to future clogs. This also means that any line feeding into the main sewer line will also need to be worked on, and this will require additional excavation for each incoming pipe. If you are dealing with a long, single sewer line, than pipe bursting may be the best option.

Cured in Place Pipe Lining (CIPP)

An option that may be more appealing is Cured in Place Pipe Lining. In this technique, a flexible tube material usually made of felt, fiberglass, or polyester, is inserted into the old pipe, expanded, then coated with a resin which hardens to create the new interior pipe.

This trenchless pipe repair method is desirable for its non-invasive approach. It is possible this can be done without any digging or trenching, although this may not always be an option. Another consideration is that the old pipe needs to be free of obstructions or angles to allow the new pipe lining to be slid into place properly. Existing obstructions could also damage the new liner before it is treated and cured if that obstruction is sharp. This method does also reduce the diameter of the interior of the pipe, however, only by approximately ¼ of an inch.

This method can be used inside most types of sewage pipes, including PVC, copper, concrete, cast iron, clay tile, and ABS plastic styles. While this is commonly a sewage pipe treatment for slab leak repairs, it can be used for other types of pipe. It is cautioned though to only use this technique for pipes with an interior diameter of 3 inches or more.

This is the most used method of pipe lining when a home sits on a concrete slab, which is the purpose of this page’s information. This may be the direction we will steer you if it makes the most sense.

Pipe Coating

Unlike CIPP, Pipe Coating does not use an insert of a new, flexible replacement sleeve. Instead, a machine pushes an epoxy through the existing pipe, creating an interior coat that is meant to harden and seal the damaged, cracked sections of the old pipe. This can obviously only be done if the old pipe is intact and free from any obstructions that would perpetuate the problems beyond the epoxy repair effort.

As a standard, pipe coating works best if any existing cracks are less than 2 inches wide at the widest point, and less than a few feet long in total. This method can extend the life of your existing pipes by up to 50 years. Because of the use of a chemical epoxy, it is not intended for culinary water lines, but rather for drain line repairs. It is also a good option if the pipe in question has bends and turns.

This can be a non-invasive, low-damage option, but the circumstances still have to be right for this to be the best solution.    

Re-Piping / Re-Routing

The preferred method of slab leak repair for Gardner Plumbing is what is usually called re-routing or re-piping.

True re-piping is completely replacing all the old piping in a home with a more modern and more durable material. In slab leak repair repiping, the replacement may only be done on a portion of the home’s pipes, in order to address the existing leak. This is why this type of slab leak repair is sometimes called re-routing, as it re-routes the section of the home’s pipes affected by the slab leak.

In re-piping/re-routing, the existing plumbing is left where it lays, and the water flow is diverted to an all new route of pipe place by our slab leak repair plumbing specialists. This new line is usually run through the ceiling or attic space above, or if possible, around the existing slab the home lies on.

The idea is causing as little damage to the home as possible by essentially pretending the old, damaged pipes are not there. The new piping replaces the previous path, diverting the flow but ultimately leading to the original intended results of delivering water to the appropriate destination. One added benefit to this slab leak repair method is that the new pipe line exists in a more accessible location for any potential future repair needs.

While the idea of running a whole new line of pipe does take time and will cost you, the time this method takes is relatively comparable to a traditional concrete cutting approach, and there is no damaged concrete to replace or flooring to try matching.

If this is the route you choose to go, you can also rest assured you will be getting the latest in plumbing pipe materials and plumbing techniques, which could easily extend the life of your home’s plumbing many more years.

In summary

Slab leak repairs are important in preventing substantial damage to your property. When you notice the signs of a slab leak, you will want to contact our professional team immediately to obtain detection and repair services. To learn more about our slab leak services, contact us at Gardner Plumbing today!

Slab Leak Plumbing Should Be Done The Right Way!

Doing slab leak plumbing properly can prevent unnecessary damage to your property and fix the slab leak problem without draining your wallet along the way. Trust Gardner Plumbing for professional Slab Leak Plumbing services!