When most people are asked to picture a leaky shower, the image they conjure up is one where water is dripping uncontrollably from the showerhead itself. Unfortunately, many shower leaks occur behind the wall, with the water that should be making it to the shower slowly spilling out. This can be hard to diagnose since the leak is rarely large enough to cause a noticeable drop in water pressure, at least at first, but it's something that you should learn how to spot if you want to get the problem fixed as soon as possible.
Here are just four signs that your shower might be leaking behind the wall.
1. You See Changes in the Wall's Appearance
One of the first things that people notice when there is a shower leak behind the wall is a change in the appearance of that wall. If you have tiles, you may find that they look darker than normal, and you might even be able to spot small holes in the grouting. If you use paint, you're likely to see it start to blister slightly; eventually it will begin to peel. Unfortunately, such changes can be hard to spot in poorly lit bathrooms, and many people simply ignore the problem.
2. You Notice a Musty Smell
Mould can easily thrive behind your wall if a leak develops. It only takes a very small amount of moisture to create an ideal home for mould, especially since the area behind your shower will also tend to be warm and dark. If you notice a musty smell despite cleaning the bathroom often, it's time to call a professional.
3. You Hear Unexplained Noises
Though rare, it's possible that a shower leak somewhere behind one of your walls will cause slight screeching or wheezing noises while you shower. This can occur when water is suddenly sent through the pipes are high speeds; the small but highly pressurized stream that escapes from the leaking point can create such a noise.
4. Your Bathroom Stays Cool
Heat and water don't mix very well. Since it's likely that the air inside any bathroom with a leak is going to remain humid and moist, it will become progressively harder to properly heat the room. If you find yourself walking into your bathroom and finding that the air feels cooler than it should, a shower leak behind one of the walls could easily be the reason why.
Contact a local plumber for more info about leaking shower repairs.