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May 30, 2024
water leak plumbing guide

Did you know that one of the most damaging problems you can face owning a home, or commercial property, is a water leak? Sounds crazy, but one little water leak can turn into thousands of dollars in repairs and structural rebuilds. The problem is that not all water leaks are visible. Water pipes can burst anywhere inside your walls, or under the concrete slabs beneath your flooring, making it impossible to see the damage that is being caused. Unless you have super powers and x-ray vision, those leaks won’t be found without the help of a professional water leak detection specialist.

Water leak plumbing has advanced from the old days of ripping apart walls and floors to find leaks. Instead, water leak plumbers now incorporate state of the art technology, and non-invasive methods, to safely locate leaks no matter where they are. If you suspect a water leak in your home of office, contact a water leak detection company as soon as possible.

Signs You Might Have a Water Leak

There are a few tell-tale signs that your home or property has a water leak, the most obvious being a dripping tap, or a mysterious growing puddle. Other signs of water leaks can include a sudden drop or rise in water pressure, increased water bills, visible mould on walls and skirting boards, damp carpet in areas, and sometimes unsightly stains appearing on walls, and in the corners of rooms. If you notice any of these things in your home, don’t hesitate to call in professional leak detectors to locate the cause quickly.

What Damage Can a Water Leak Do to Your Home

Water is like a silent killer to wood, plaster, paint and pretty much anything it touches. An undetected water leak will begin to rot wood, and cause mould to grow. Water leaks under the concrete slabs of your home can destroy the entire structure, rotting stumps, and causing internal damage that will need to be torn down and replaced, to be repaired.

Water leaks also cause dangerous types of mould to grow which are highly toxic, and can cause a number of medical issues for homeowners and their family members. Skin irritation, eye infections and respiratory issues are exacerbated by the inhalation, and exposure, to mould spores emitted from rotting wood and plaster.

Equipment Used to Locate Water Leaks

In the past, the methods plumbers used to locate water leaks were destructive and expensive. Cutting holes through plaster to see inside wall cavities, ripping up tiles and concrete, were the only ways to locate leaking pipes. The resulting damage (and the repair bill), often ended up worse than the cost of the pipe repair itself.

Thankfully, leak detection specialists now have access to the best non-invasive equipment and training in the industry. The specialised state of the art technology used today was engineered to make leak detection a safe, and destruction free task. Some of that equipment includes:

Thermal Imaging

State of the art thermal imaging is used to look through walls and concrete, showing precise locations of leaks and pressure points. Hand-held thermal imaging devices turn hot and cold temperature signals into live visuals, which are displayed on the screen. Thermal imaging devices are used to locate leaks, and spot moisture build-up in hidden areas, such as ceilings and floors. Often, there are no visual signs of a problem until it’s too late, when the wood has begun to rot, and toxic mould has begun to grow. The only way to see the problem before it becomes a health and financial disaster, is with the use of thermal imaging cameras.

Acoustic Leak Detectors

Acoustic leak detection devices use sound frequency to locate leaks along water pipes. The normal flow of water has its own unique sound frequency and pitch. When there is a water leak along the pipes, the sound frequency changes. A small leak will give off a higher frequency sound, and a larger leak will produce a low frequency. The sounds can be heard, and localised by the leak specialist, and converted to data which is uploaded to a computer for analysis. With noise cancelling technology, acoustic leak detectors can precisely pinpoint problem areas before further damage is caused, using the tiniest fluctuations in sound waves.

Ways to Avoid Water Leaks

There are small things you can do to avoid serious leaks and excess water wastage. Check that all the washers on your taps are in good working order, and if not have them replaced. Switch to water saving taps and shower heads, to reduce the water pressure running through your pipes. Ensure to have regular services, and inspections from licenced plumbers.

Flex hoses under sinks are often a cause of water leaks, so check them regularly for fraying and deterioration, and replace with new ones when necessary.

Keep an eye on your water bills and even conduct your own meter-read test during an hour of no water usage. If there is a significant rise in your meter numbers during your ‘off’ hour, then you might have a problem.

If You Suspect a Water Leak

Water leaks are a common problem for homeowners, but there are ways you can avoid the domino effect of water damage.

If you have any signs of a water leak, or just want peace of mind that one hasn’t begun behind closed walls, then it’s best to call a professional leak detection specialist. There is no point leaving it to chance, because every second counts when it comes to stopping water from destroying the foundations of your home.