You might think that water leak detection starts at the meter, but it could actually start just about everywhere else. Keeping water in soils at a level point can help prevent the soils under the foundation from expanding and contracting, which can be very bad for your foundation and be the cause of foundation heaving. Here are a few steps that you can take to detect a water leak, keeping in mind that this is only to detect a leak, and not to locate one.
There are a few tools you will need to get and can get from any hardware store. First, you will need a shovel if you want to uncover sewer clean outs. Next, you will need a sewer balloon, which is what tests for sewer leaks. Lastly, you will need a pressure gauge that can be screwed onto the tap to test for water leaks. Now, on to the good stuff!
Water Leak Detection
In order to test for water line leaks, a pressure gauge is screwed onto a tap line. The house needs to be checked to make sure that there is no dripping or leaking fixtures. The water will then need to be turned off at the meter. If the pressure holds in the gauge, then there is no leak in the system. If the pressure falls, well then, you’ve got a leak that needs investigating!
Sewer Leak Detection
Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, it is necessary to locate the sewer clean outs. Normally they have a screw cap or a clamped rubber cap. To test for leaks, a sewer balloon is pushed down into the sewer system, then inflated with a pump. Next, the sewer is filled to the level of the pipe with water. Your job is to watch if the water level in the pipe falls after the pipe and has been blocked off at the main. If this happens, it means there is a leak in the sewer system. At times, you will have to pull a toilet and fill the sewer from inside the house. If the water level falls, there is a leak!
The next step that needs to be taken if you detect that there is a leak, is locating and repairing it. In order to do this, you will need a professional plumber so that you don’t cause further damage to your pipes and home foundation. If you are located in the Middle Tennessee or Nashville area, give Jack Ward & Sons Plumbing a call at (615) 227-2811.