Successful Water Leak Detection and Audit Methods

Water leaks can be a disaster.  Most water leaks will go unnoticed until they cause significant loss or damage.  Underground water leaks are often not visible until they cause sinkholes, ponding, buckling pavement, or foundation damage.

When water pipes inside the walls or ceiling leak, it can go unnoticed until it causes damage.  By then, there will be watermarks and discoloration on the walls and ceiling.  This type of water damage will attract mold.  Mold damages the property’s aesthetics, gives off a foul odor, and may cause sickness.

A leak in a pipe provides easy access for impurities.  Soil, bacteria, or fungi can penetrate the pipe and flow along with the water.  This contaminates the water and lowers the quality for drinking and bathing. 

No matter how insignificant a leak may seem, it will get larger with time and cause a significant loss of water, that in turn will increase the water bill.  Water leaks can also result in revenue loss for water suppliers when the water fails to reach the consumers.  When water is lost through leaks before it gets to the consumer, it will not be measured and recorded by the consumer’s water meter.

In the United States, municipal water utilities consume electricity the most. If water is lost through leaks, this also translates to energy loss.

For these reasons, as Haas Management explains, water leak detection and audit services are essential because they can locate hidden leaks and help to quickly repair them before major damage occurs. Below are some successful water leak detection and audit methods.

 

 LEAK DETECTION METHODS

1. Acoustic water leak

This is a primary form of water leak detection. It involves “the systematic method of using listening equipment to survey the distribution system, identify leak sounds, and pinpoint the exact location of hidden underground leaks”.

There is a distinct sound that is produced when water is escaping from a pipe under high pressure.  This sound can be transmitted for a very long distance through a pipe.

Depending on the type of material, length, and diameter of the pipe, the sound can be transmitted at various pitches.  When the acoustic equipment is applied on a pipe, the sound gets louder as the device gets closer to the leak point.  The disadvantage of mobile acoustic water detection is that heavy traffic, deep soil, and thick road pavement can muffle the sound.

2. Pressure leak detection

This is a secondary water leak detection method that makes use of the pressure difference to locate a leak.  The difference in reading when a pressure gauge and flow meter are placed strategically will help to quickly find a leak.  When there is a water leak, the water pressure will drop from its original state.  This drop will be noted by the pressure meter.  Both the primary and secondary water leak detection methods can be used together to locate water leaks.

3. Thermal leak detection

This method utilizes thermal cameras to detect leaks in hot water systems.  In order to use this procedure, the boiler has to be turned on before it is inspected.

When hot water flows through the pipe, the surface temperature of the floor will increase.  A thermal camera will pick up the heat pattern on the floor and show the water running through the pipes.  If there aren’t any  leaks, the camera will show a sharp image differentiating the hot pipes from the cold surroundings. When there is a leak, the camera will display an irregular shaped spot with a bright center.

LEAK AUDIT PROCEDURE

Leak audits help to identify the extent of water loss from leaks and how to minimize them.  The data obtained from an audit is illustrated in a tabular form.  It shows the leaks, indirect measurements of potential leaks (customer billings and receipts) flow meter reading, and pressure gauge reading. 

A full-scale leak audit program is performed once a year to get the full analysis of leaks over time. It entails a comprehensive survey of the entire water distribution system.

  • Efforts involved in the pre-screening audit
  • Testing distribution controls and operating procedures 
  • Details about the type, age, and size of piping
  • Mapping of the distribution system
  • Verifying the accuracy of meter

BOTTOM LINE

No matter how insignificant water leaks may seem, they can be a disaster when over time.  They can damage property, lead to water contamination, cause sickness, result in high utility bills, or lead to revenue loss. 

For these reasons, water leak detection and audits are essential because they can locate hidden leaks and help to quickly repair them before major damage occurs.  Successful Water Leak Detection Methods include:

  • Acoustic
  • Pressure
  • Thermal
  • X-ray
  • Digital
  • Cable sensor

Do you suspect a leak within your water distribution system? Do you want to take precautionary measures by having a water leak detection and audit service performed on your water distribution system? You need to contact the plumbing professionals at Water Savers Atlanta.

Water Savers Atlanta offers multiple methods of leak detection and if necessary, provide a complete repair estimate.  All of our plumbers are experienced, licensed and insured for your safety and safety of your home and property.  We are also non-invasive; the leader in non-destructive water leak detection, including hidden water and sewer leaks.  For more information about our services, visit our website at https://watersaversatlanta.com/ or call us at (678) 944-9195. 

 

 

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