It's all water under the slab
Well things were going spectacularly smoothly for us, so I guess it was time we hit a snag.
We had to open some walls to move electric for range and frig and icemaker for frig and that all went fine.
The sheetrockers left a lot of dust on the now bare floor as most of you can imagine but then we noticed that in one area, the dust because mud and stayed that way.
Arrgggh....a slab leak and tiny one at that.
You might be thinking that a tiny one is good, but that's not the case, as that makes it very hard to locate.
I'd thought I'd share a few details in case anyone has a similar issue.
DH is a home inspector so uses a guage to check water pressure in houses, so we cut off the water at the main, turned everything off, put the gauge on and waited for the pressure to drop. Which it did, but at a miniscule rate. But enough that we were pretty sure there was a leak on the presssure side.
Step 2 was a leak finder guy who basically does the same thing but then pumps the system full of air and then uses some special microphones to listen for the sound of air escaping. Unfortunately he thought he heard it for a minute in one area but then it stopped, and the pressure stopped dropping. Apparently some small debris had temporarily plugged the leak.
Step 3 was we mapped out the areas where the water came into the house and where the hot and cold runs were and took our best guess at which run was leaking based on the wet spot. This was hard and involved finding and calling the PO who actually built the house 30 years and then put on a second story 20 years ago to ask him what if any plumbing changes they made, as we have no plans.
Then we had to open the walls to access the manifolds behind the hot water heaters and the plumber took the manfolds apart and we started systematically checking one section of pipe at a time by capping them, pumping them full of air and then waiting for the pressure to drop. There were a few tense moments when the suspect area didn't drop pressure at first, because if it wasn't that section, it meant we were somehow off base on what went where but luckily it did begin a slow steady drop.
Now comes the fun part. To fix a slab leak you basically have 3 choices, jack hammer up the slab ($1700/hole plus you have to know exactly where the leak is, which we didn't), tunnel under house to fix it ($6,000 for the tunnel, plus again you have to know where the exact leak is) or perform a cardiac bypass on your house.
Surgery was clearly the best option for us, and luckily our great plumber and the DH were able to come up with a route for the new pipes that did minimal damage to the sheet rock. The only place we had to cut (besides the holes already made for the tests) was in the cement board that was put up for the area behind the sink and since you never see that it was a no brainer.
Grand central station..plumber and glass guys at the house at the same time
New plumbing coming off kitchen sink location
Next step will be to test again and be sure it is holding pressure. The fun news is that there can be more than one leak! Hopefully though since we bypassed the leaky section, we're OK, at least for now!