In a perfect world, a leaking pipe would send off an alarm, notifying you of the problem so that you could immediately repair it. Unfortunately, this isn't how it typically happens. Leaks can often occur behind walls and other surfaces without you even being aware. Knowing how to recognize the outward signs of an internal pipe leak can help you rectify the situation faster.
When it comes to a second story bathroom, one indication of a leak is staining on the ceiling. These stains can develop in any shape and are typically copper or brown in color. If the leak has been going on for quite some time, the area might also appear to be sagging and showing signs of deterioration, such as crumbling. This type of issue requires your immediate attention, as a ceiling in this state could easily collapse, causing both physical damage and personal injury.
If you have wallpaper installed in your home and it seems to be peeling all of a sudden, you want to take a closer look. Assuming there is no adhesive issue, the problem is likely a pipe leak. If a pipe behind the wall is leaking, eventually the moisture will start to run down the wall. Moisture automatically lowers the integrity of the adhesive. This will in turn cause the wallpaper to detach from the wall and result in the peeling that you are experiencing.
Another indication of an internal pipe leak is floor damage. Moisture coming in contact with the surface of a floor rarely causes any issues besides an aesthetic imperfection. However, moisture that comes in contact with the subfloor surface is a different story. Moisture can basically rot away the subfloor and cause permanent structural damage. An indication of this problem is a cracking or buckling floor. Depending on the type of floor, you might also experience weak spots.
There are few odors as recognizable as old or stale water. This type of odor is generally reminiscent of mildew or must. If you start to notice this smell in a particular room or area of your home, a water leak behind the surface is likely the culprit. The bad part about this smell is that it is often an indication of an old leak, meaning the water has been accumulating for some time so there is likely to be significant damage. This smell can also mean that mildew or mold has started forming.
Keep your eyes and noise open for signs of an internal pipe leak in your home so that you can move towards repairing the issue as quickly as possible. For more information, contact a plumber in your area.