Slab leaks occur when water and sewer lines that run below the concrete foundation of a building break or deteriorate. Slab leak problems are caused by different issues, some of which you can avoid, whereas others are plumbing mistakes you cannot control. 

Let’s look at some common causes of slab leak problems and how you can prevent them.

Hard Water 

Hard water contains acidic properties from mineral deposits that eat the inside of the copper pipes creating leaks over time. The best way to prevent slab leaks from hard water is to install anti-scalers or water softeners in the home. Water softeners remove minerals such as magnesium and calcium that make the water acidic. On the other hand, anti-scalers prevent scale buildup on the water pipes. 

Copper Tubing 

Before contractors moved to PEX (cross-linked polyethylene), copper tubes were the most commonly used materials for sewer and water lines. That’s because they’re easy to get, make and install. The problem with copper tubing is that if the plumber doesn’t get the installation right, rocks or pebbles can easily dent the tubes and cause leaks over time as water runs over them. PEX doesn’t break or crack from stress from pebbles; you can use them instead of copper tubing.


Most people use chlorine in water as it helps keep out bacteria, mold, and mildew, making water safe to consume. However, chlorine and chloramine have a corrosive effect on copper pipes. It eats all impurities, including those on the pipe, causing pinhole leaks. You can use physical water purification processes to avoid unchecked chlorine levels. 


Concrete can eat copper pipes depending on the placement. Sleeves are used to protect the pipes by creating a barrier between the pipe and the concrete. Additionally, pipes expand and contract due to changes in water temperature, and if you jam them into the concrete, they will crack or break. A good plumber will lay down a bed of sand before laying the pipes. 

Age of the Home 

Most older homes use galvanized water piping which starts rusting the same day they were placed. After a long period, they wear and tear, causing serious slab leaks.

Take Away 

Leak detection is the only way to determine whether you have a slab leak, its cause, and the best way to fix it. At  LeakPro®, we have the best tools for leak detection and leak locating. Contact us today to learn more about  LeakPro® detection equipment and to order what you need. You can also get more information on slab leaks from Roger’s YouTube.


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