Learn to Identify and Isolate Water Leaks
You don't want to learn how to find and isolate a water leak when your home or backyard is flooded out. That is the time to call for immediate help. We at Amazing Leak Detection would like to help save you from that type of awful experience along with the costs that come with it. You can save yourself and your family from a lot of grief by learning some basic steps to identify and localize this kind of trouble, perhaps even before it happens.
Even after a small pinhole leak becomes a larger hole, you can isolate the leak and shut off the supply to it before help arrives and the damages get out of control. Do you know where the shutoff valve is for the water main to your home? If you do, you've made it past step one! But shutting off the entire water supply may not be practical, especially when people in the home need water service and your service technicians are an hour away. Learning and becoming aware of some of the techniques we discuss here will save you hours of aggravation, inconvenience and many of your hard earned dollars.
Amazing Leak Detection is here to help. We offer these tips and tricks to better prepare you as a home owner and business entrepreneur. No one wants a major leak on their property but it does happen. We hope that there are things here that can help control the effects of that leak even before you call for help. Be assured, when you do call, Amazing Leak Detection will be there to take care of it. We are a local family business with over 20 years of experience. Give us a call.
Why your water bill has gone way up
A suddenly sky-high water bill is an alert that something may be wrong on your property. It could be due to either a temporary jump in water usage from a newly installed pool, spa or fountain, or you may have a water leak on your property.
We recommend walking the property including all through your home. Shut off anything that uses water, toilets, appliances, faucets, etc. Also, shut off anything making noise like a TV or radio so you have a better chance of hearing water running from within the walls and ceilings. Once everything is off, and you're sure no one else in the home will run any water, conduct our Water Meter test to help verify if you have a hidden leak.
Once you confirm that you have a leak or if you are still unsure, call us and we will be glad to come out and find and repair the cause. Your water bill will return to its normal range before you know it.
How to be sure if you have a Pool or Spa Leak
If you're filling your pool or spa more than twice a week or if you're having a lot of trouble keeping the chemicals balanced, be aware that these are both indications of a possible leak. To be sure, you can try an evaporation test. This simple test can confirm the existence of a leak, even without bubbles in the water.
The Bucket Test. You will need a 5 gallon bucket, a tape measure, and a marker or piece of tape. Set the bucket in your pool or spa on the step or seat (try to avoid setting it on an in-floor cleaning head so it does not tip or get pushed off the step). The bucket MUST be in the water of the structure being tested to keep the water in the bucket the same temperature as the water in the structure.
Fill the bucket just a bit higher than the water level of the structure it's in. Helpful hint: To keep the bucket from floating, you can add a rock to the bucket to weigh it down. Mark the bucket on the inside and outside at each water level. Be sure that the water is calm so you can get a good mark. Also make sure if your pool has an auto fill pot, or auto leveler, to turn this feature off. Your test is now running.
Wait 24 hours and come back with your tape measure, Measure the drop in water on the inside of your bucket from the mark. This is your 24 hour evaporation rate. Now measure the water drop from the mark on the outside of the bucket. This is how much water your structure has lost. Ideally these measurements should be the same or very close to the same. If there is a large difference, chances are very high that you have a leak. Contact Amazing Leak Detection today to schedule a Leak Test and Repair.
The water meter test for water leaks
Most leaks can be heard or seen, but some are difficult to detect. Your water meter may be your most useful tool in determining if you actually have a water leak on your property.
You can follow these steps to verify if you have a leak:
- Locate the water meter.
- Locate the water supply shut-off valve for your home or building. It can be outdoors or indoors and is commonly located where the main water pipe enters the building foundation. In a home, this is often near an outside faucet.
- Turn off all faucets, outlets and water-using appliances. Take steps to ensure no one else uses any water while you are conducting this test.
- Note the one-cubic foot dial on the water meter. There should not be any meter movement. After 30 minutes or more, take another look at the dial. If the dial has moved, especially a lot, you have an active leak within the water system. Now, close the main shut-off valve. If the indicator stops, your leak is inside the building. Check toilets and faucets. If the indicator continues to move when the shut-off valve is closed, you have an underground leak between the water meter and the shut-off valve, which should be repaired.
This test may not have tested the entire water system but will successfully test those parts of the system that were not isolated. You may have a pool, spa or fountain with the water supply shut off. Or a sprinkler system that runs on a timer that is currently off. Other testing will need to be done to test those systems for a possible leak.
How to pressure test most any isolated water system
You can test most any water system for a leak with a pressure test: Irrigation, supply lines to structures, well water supported systems, isolated lines within an RV, Mobile Home Community or virtually any water system that can be isolated. Simply Attach an inexpensive pressure gauge to any faucet within your water system that can be isolated. Then turn off the supply. For the home, shut off the water main valve to the home. It is located with the water meter. You can also use the water supply shut-off valve if you prefer or are testing an irrigation that gets it water before the main water goes into the house or building. If the gauge loses pressure, the pressure is leaving from somewhere which could quite possibly be a leak within the system. To go another step to verify a leak, check to insure all water fixtures are off within the isolated system you're trying to test, then run this test again. If the gage continues to drop pressure the existence of a leak is highly probable.
If a leak needs to be located and repaired, calling Amazing Leak Detection can often save hours of endless guessing and costs related to needless disruption and further damage to your property with our non-destructive leak detection methods. Most of our repair services are non-invasive by design and so will not disrupt large portions of existing landscapes or structures.
Why your ceiling and walls may have stains
Discoloration of your interior walls and ceilings are a visible sign of a water leak behind it. A stain can occur from a roof leak, water intrusion from your exterior walls, or a broken water supply or drain pipe within your walls or ceiling. If neglected, the water can puddle within the ceilings and walls and begin to be absorbed into your home’s structure, causing Wet or damp to the touch patches. In time, this moisture will create wood rot and even mold.
Try to figure out where the water is coming from. Whether it's the roof or an upstairs bathroom, whatever is above the ceiling is usually the source of your problem. If you can't identify a possible water source above the ceiling stain, you may have a leaky pipe. It's not uncommon for water to run along rafters or piping before dropping onto your ceiling, basically hiding the true source of the problem.
Using our state-of-the-art leak detection equipment and experienced technicians, Amazing Leak Detection can quickly pin point the source of your water leak and repair it before further damage is done.