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How to Spot Water Damage in Your House


From San Antonio to Tyler, Texas has experienced a week full of rain, thunder, lightning, and flooding. The forecast for Tyler calls for thunderstorms on Saturday, and a mix of sun and clouds on Sunday.

While flooding can be a threat to most houses, it may not be the only source of water damage. Plumbing and roof leaks can lead to serious damage and can cost homeowners thousands of dollars in repairs.

Here are some effective ways to check for water leaks in your house.

Roof Leaks

Identifying a roof leak can be easy if you see water dripping down in your attic. However, some roof leaks may be more difficult to spot and identify. Here are other things that may reveal you’ve got a roof leak:

  • Stains on ceiling or walls
  • Bubbling on ceiling or walls
  • Mold on the roof
  • Buckling or curling roof shingles
  • Missing roof shingles (possibly torn off by high winds during a storm)


If you believe that you have a leak in your roof, contact a roofing specialist.

Plumbing Leaks

The EPA estimates that 10% of American homes have leaks that waste 90 or more gallons of water each day. Leaks are a common problem in houses, but they can be very hard to identify.

The best way to determine if you have a plumbing or irrigation leak is to read your water meter. An effective way to check if you have a water leak is to check the meter’s reading:

  • Turn off all water
  • Record the meter’s number
  • Don’t use any water for 1 or 2 hours
  • Check the meter again

If the number has changed, it’s likely you have a leak.

If you think your toilet is leaking but can’t see any visible problems, try this trick with food coloring:

  • Put a couple of drops of food coloring in the tank of your toilet
  • Don’t flush the toilet
  • Wait several minutes and then check the bowl
  • If food coloring is in the bowl, the flapper at the bottom of the tank is leaking

Water Leaks Inside Walls

When water is leaking inside the walls of a home, it’s most likely the homeowners won’t notice the leak until the water begins to seep through the walls or causes the paint to peel.

Moisture sitting inside the walls of a house is the perfect environment for mold to grow. Mold can have harmful effects on your health, especially if you have allergies or asthma. Some molds produce harmful chemicals that cause illness in both humans and animals.

Whatever the type of mold, it’s important to have your house checked for mold. Here are common signs of mold in a house:

  • A musty smell
  • Problems with allergies
  • Visible signs of mold (a small amount of mold can be mistaken for dirt)
  • Water leak problems
  • Condensation on windows or metal pipes

If your house has had leaking pipes, it’s best to have a professional search for mold in your house and remove any discovered mold with the proper equipment.


If you’re buying a house, it’s important to have a professional inspect the house for any problems like water leaks and mold. Sometimes homes are misrepresented and the buyers are hit with problems that weren’t disclosed in the sale.

If you need a real estate lawyer, contact the Colley & Colley law firm in Tyler, Texas for a free consultation. We’re dedicated to providing you with the best legal counsel in East Texas.