Nobody wants a water leak. The worst thing is, you only realise the presence of a leak when it has already done some damage. It can become extremely distressing and disruptive. Unless you are provided with the ‘escape of water’ reassurance under your home insurance policy, you would probably be looking for leak detection services to find and fix the causes.
But leaks can be anywhere. On the exposed pipes, pipelines inside walls, underground or any place where there are pipes and water flows inside it. Identifying the early signs of leaks can help save you from financial loss.
Five Signs Of Hidden Leaks
1.High Water Bills
When you instantly doubt the usage of water in your house against the amount of the water bill, your house is probably suffering water leaks. If you notice any hike in the water bill, you may want to call the leak detection services right away.
2. Water Meter Indicating A Leak
A water meter can show if there is water escaping from the system. You just need to follow the instructions for reading the meter, and you can discover if there is a leak in your house. If this is so, you may need to call for home leak detection services.
3. Mould Growing On Walls
If a mould is growing on a wall where there is no visible water source, there could be a leak inside it. Patches of dampness on walls and ceilings also indicate a leak.
4. Buildup Of Water On The Ground
Water leaking through pipelines buried under the ground can surface up and make small pools and puddles. Observe such spots after removing the water. It if returns, there could be a leak underneath it.
5. Musty Smell
Leaked water starts giving a musty smell as it gets older. If you notice a stale or damp smell in a particular area of your home, there could be a hidden leak somewhere. When the leak detection services provider arrive at your home, let them know of the smell.
Common Places Where Leak Can Occur
i.Water Supply lines along the walls and beams
On an average basis, your’s homes water system operates under 60 psi of water pressure. When the pressure increases, there is a high chance of the pipeline bursts and ruptures. Some joints may also start leaking due to the pressure. The main culprit here is water itself. Yes, water is the cause of those leaks most of the time, and this is because of its eccentric nature. During winter, when the water cools down to zero degrees, it expands, unlike other fluids. This irregular expansion exerts pressure against the pipe walls and causes it to break.
One of the most common places where leaks can occur are the walls, mainly because they are exposed to weather and many things.
i. Under Kitchen Sink And Faucets
Leaks often occur under the kitchen sink and faucets. Under-sink leaks can deal a lot of damage. The good thing though, is that you can repair it easily and it does not take much time either. Faucets also waste a lot of water if they start to leak. The best way to tackle the problem is to replace the faulty ones.
i. Underground Leak
Underground leaks occur less, but when they do, it can cost more than any other leaks. They are also the most difficult ones to find. Underground leak detection can be quite expensive and time-consuming. They may also require more detection methods. Case history can prove to be much helpful in reducing the time and cost.
These are the most common places of leaks while others may include, water heaters, toilets, sewer pump and showers.
Methods Of Finding Leaks
Our leak detection services use three different methods to find the source of a leak. The methods are selected depending on the case and the experience of our leak detection specialists. Sometimes, one could be enough or sometimes more than one method can be used depending on the situation.
1. Thermal Imaging
Thermal imaging requires a set of advanced equipment for locating leaks hidden behind walls, under the ground or in the dark. The thermal imaging method is based on a thermal (heat) imaging camera that captures the differentials in surface temperatures. Through a thermal camera, you can see hot objects or substances in bright colours and the cold spots in dark colour. The technique works best for heating lines as the camera can instantly catch heat.
We carry out an initial survey with thermal imaging devices. The equipment we use is tuned to measure very small differences in temperature allowing us to be more accurate. The best advantage of this method is that it is non-invasive and the survey can be carried out very quickly and without causing any disruption.
2. Acoustic Testing
If you have been wondering “how to detect a water leak under concrete ?” Here is your answer. Thermal imaging may not be effective in some conditions especially during summer. Sometimes, pipes are very well insulated or buried deep in the ground or walls making it difficult to detect changes in temperature. In such cases, we switch to the acoustic testing method. This method involves using sound waves for detection of potential leaks.
When a pressurised pipe is damaged, the water leaks out into the structure which causes the point of leakage to emit small vibrations. These vibrations are so small that human ears cannot hear them. But sonic leak detectors can catch these vibrations and tell if there is a leak under its range. Our leak detection specialists run the microphones along the ground carefully and mark any spots where they see a spike in vibrations. After more careful examination of the spot, they decide whether there could be a potential leak underneath it.
3. Using Tracer Gas
Another method for detecting leaks involves no water or heat as it is solely based on gas. Some conditions don’t allow the use of thermal or acoustic testing system, so we use gas instead. This method is effective for detecting leaks in the drainage system.
In tracer gas detection, our specialists first drain out all the water from the system and introduce a tracer gas with pressure. This gas is made up of 95% nitrogen and 5% hydrogen. Since hydrogen gas has the smallest and lightest molecules, it escapes from the leakage points and makes it to the surface. Our specialists then use sensitive gas detectors to find the leaks. The advantage of using tracer gas is that it is non-flammable and does not damage the environment.
Leak Detection At Rainbow International
Rainbow International provides comprehensive leak detection services to insurers, loss adjusters, plumbing services, builders and maintenance managers, facility managers and homeowners. We inspect the property keeping all the prospective reasons of leaks in mind. We help our clients in determining the origin of leaks so the correct remedial action can be taken to avoid future leaks.
Our leak detection services are followed by a full remediation programme to restore the property back to its original form. Our teams are trained to carry out the process with minimum damage or disruption to the work or living environment. We possess the most cutting-edge leak detection equipment that allows us to provide exceptional services.
If you need assistance regarding leaks, feel free to call us on 01375 847 522. Our dedicated staff is available 24/7 to respond towards any emergency restoration work.