Is there unexplained water on the surface of the ground? Is the meter showing higher than normal water usage? Is the water system holding pressure?
Unexplained water on the surface of the ground or within a manhole are possible consequences of conduit leaks. The presence of chlorinated water is an additional symptom pointing toward leak detection.
In cases of fire lines, static pressure should be measured. If there is a loss in pressure or a corresponding spike in usage not related to service, a leak may be present. Jockey pumps are placed on fire systems to maintain pressure. A jockey pump should never have to run frequently. This is a sign that the system is losing pressure.
To find the leak, a field employee must first carefully mark the location of the water line on the street after locating it exactly with electromagnetic equipment. The section must be accurately located and marked on the street in order for the listener to consistently listen directly over the pipe.
Usually, the piping between the valve/hydrant with the loudest sound and the valve/hydrant with the second loudest sound is the section of the line that needs to be marked.
Water leaks in underground pressurized pipes are commonly found using acoustic leak detection. The principle behind acoustic leak location is that water leaving a pipe under pressure creates vibration and noise that can be detected on the surface. In other words, the louder the noise the closer to the leak you are.
Factors that affect these sounds and their intensity include water pressure in the pipe, pipe material, pipe diameter, as well as soil type and soil compaction. Surface cover such as grass, loose soil, asphalt, and concrete slab play a role too.
Smoke testing for storm and sanitary systems refers to a method where artificial smoke is pushed through the pipes to detect signs of cracks, leaks, or other defaults. Where there is a defect, plumes of smoke will emerge.
Helium location is similar method in which helium is introduced into the water line and sensors are used on the surface to detect the helium as it escapes the soil above the leak. If possible, isolate portions of larger systems to narrow down or eliminate portions of the system. This saves time and money.
Receive a questionnaire to walk you through all possible factors that will require further leak investigation.
Next step: fix isolated areas of pipe cracks caused by water leaks.
Water creates a specific noise when it leaks through burst pipes. Water leaks produce high-frequency to low-frequency noise that can easily be picked up by acoustic detectors. At Trinity Subsurface, LLC we use sensitive listening equipment to locate the source of noise generated by pressurized water leaving a pipe.
The use of acoustic leak detectors is highly recommended because it eliminates the need to dig out the ground or remove any structures just to check the pipes physically. This takes a lot of effort and requires repairs and replacements afterward.
At Trinity Subsurface, LLC we would introduce helium into the water line and use sensors on the surface to detect the helium as it escapes the soil above the leak. Since helium is lighter than air if introduced into an empty pipe with a break in it, the Helium gas molecules will exit from the conduit opening, rise through the subsurface, and exit from the ground at the exact point where the break is.
The advantages if helium location includes being effective in noisy environments, on many pipe materials, and a high success rate. The methodology is easy to use and the results have little ambiguity.
Unexplained surface water or a higher water bill could be an indication of a leak. If you detect high levels of chlorine in your water, there could be a fault in the sewer line or possible leaking.
Additionally, a loss in pressure of your fire lines (fire lines should hold static pressure with no water usage). Another indication of a water leak is if your jockey pump is running continuously. Jockey pumps are placed on fire systems to maintain pressure. A jockey pump should never have to run frequently. This is a sign that the system is losing pressure.