Technology has come a long way in assisting to find a water leak that may be occurring. Back in the dark days of plumbing, it required a shovel, concrete-breaking devices, and grit. The plumber would dig a hole as close to the water line as possible (this could be difficult, as it is buried underground). Once the pipe was exposed it would be inspected to check if water was leaking into the newly dug hole. From there the plumber would move up the water line by a few metres and repeat the process, eventually finding where the underground water leak was occurring. Even then it was possible the pipe was in such poor condition that it may need renewal anyway.
Modern technology has improved the process of finding water leaks, with time saved being a direct cost saving to you. Yes, there is an initial outlay for this technology, but these tools are essential.
The technology helps us detect a leak in a timely manner in addition to minimal ground disruption and mess.
At O’Shea Plumbing, we use a combination of tools to paint a picture of what is happening. As these are tools and not our eyes; until you find the leak and see it a plumber should never guarantee they will be able to find a leak, as some are in inaccessible locations with different types of piping which are explained below.
The tools O’Shea Plumbing suggests being used:
- Line Tracing = we attach a device to the water supply that runs a small current through the piping, so long as the water pipe is made of metal, not plastic. If the water pipe is made of metal and not completely separated, this should allow the small current to run the whole length of the pipe (this is a safe current and there are no concerns about anyone being zapped).
- Locator = picks up the current giving a depth, and accurate location.
- Air compressor = may be used to help increase the sound of the leak, sometimes this allows water to bubble to the surface or may start making a whistle-type noise.
- Listening equipment = this equipment is so sensitive you could put the listening equipment over an ant’s nest, and you would be deafened by the sound of millions of ants scurrying around. This picks up water drops, and spray and helps locate where leaks may be under concrete.
- Infrared camera technology = this camera can show hot and cold points in the area and assist in highlighting where water is moving.
With these tools, we can paint a good picture of where a water main leak may be. As mentioned above no plumber can guarantee they will find a leak but if they are using the right tools and the information provided by them, it can save time in locating where the issue is probably occurring.
O’Shea Plumbing specialises in water leak investigation and is happy to help you with any issue, even if it is a test to see if you have a water leak. Please call the office on 9888 2887.