How to Detect a Hidden Water Leak- What are the dangers?
Quite often, many people in Surrey do not decide on the replacement of old water pipes, based on the fact that the upcoming work will be quite expensive, and it is quite difficult to do it. Others are guided only by their experience and are trying to replace the damaged pipes themselves. But not always such work can be crowned with success. Basically, the process of replacing water pipes requires the use of specialized tools, as well as work experience.
Old plumbing pipes, which have served for more than a dozen years without proper repair, are mostly blocked by rust, slag, and other deposits. Inside the pipe, there is only a small gap through which the water flow passes, as a result of which the pressure in the pipe decreases.
There is also another problem associated with the appearance of rust on old pipes. Subsequently, holes are formed, from which water begins to flow. In such places, the pipe wall becomes quite thin, and, unable to withstand the pressure of water, bursts.
These places are quite dangerous and extremely vulnerable. Such pipes at any time can break through and flood your apartment, and with it - your neighbors.
It is also possible that the pipes can break through after the water freezes in the systems, and you can detect such breaks only in spring when relatively warm weather is established outside.
In this case, ice is formed primarily on the walls of the pipe and then increases along the radius until the pipe is completely covered with the ice plug. The formation of such a plug leads to a rapid increase in pressure in the pipe, which causes it to burst.
It is worth noting that pipes with hot water burst more often due to a sharp temperature difference in the pipeline.
Threats of water leaks
Such unexpected leaks and breakthroughs of water pipes lead to:
- damage to your property;
- flooding of neighbors;
- the occurrence of the mold ;
- and can significantly affect your family budget.
The most dangerous of these factors for human health is the occurrence of mold. Spending a lot of time in rooms with high humidity, each of you risks your health.
Poor spores of mold and mildew, which "feel" well in high humidity, adversely affect the human condition. As a rule, the foci of such bacteria are based in places with high humidity, respectively, also close to the leaks of pipes. Spores enter the body through the respiratory tract, absorbed into the blood. Further, they destroy beneficial bacteria and suppress immunity.
In addition, mold also literally "eats" building materials and affects their quality. Thus, you will need not only to take care of solving problems related to your health but also to carry out repairs in this room, as well as think about replacing the pipeline if this was the cause of the occurrence of pathogenic bacteria.
It is rather difficult to fight mold, both at the level of the treatment of your health and at the level of the repair done. No drugs, in this case, can not help you until you eliminate the cause of mold and fungus. In this case, you will need to correctly determine the cause of the appearance of pathogenic bacteria and eliminate it.
There are special tools that help in the fight against mold and fungus, but to find a universal solution is quite difficult. Without having tried several means in practice, you cannot determine the most suitable option for you. The best solution, in this case, will be periodic diagnostics of the water supply system for hidden leaks and timely elimination of the arisen problems in its operation.
Special attention should be paid to the destruction of the foundation and brickwork in houses (sometimes this happens in apartments). Hidden leaks, in this case, symbolize those holes, corrosion or cracks that are formed in the pipeline. In this case, water does not immediately go outside, but travels underground, washing its way to several tens of meters in some cases.
Thus, water enters the brick or concrete (depending on the material from which the house is built), saturates it, and when it reaches subzero ambient temperatures, it freezes and then breaks the material from the inside. It should be noted that wet materials also give off heat faster, i.e. wet walls in the house will be cooler than dry.
How to find hidden leakage
Sometimes such leaks practically do not manifest themselves and are invisible to the human eye. They can be identified by indirect signs, such as pressure drop in the boiler or wetting of any parts of the wall or ceiling. At first glance, it may seem like a rather simple problem, but it will last until the leak manifests itself 100%. As noted earlier, pipe leaks are dangerous due to subsidence or the complete destruction of the foundation as a result of soil erosion.
Search for water leaks should be carried out using specialized equipment. But in some cases, you can do without a complex tool. Primary testing on sites with suspected leaks is carried out visually, inspecting problem areas. Small or hidden leaks are difficult to visualize. An initial fault inspection can only be performed with strong leaks.
Also, in their work, experts use the method of detecting hidden leaks using building material moisture meters that measure the moisture content of bricks, concrete, screed, foundation and other building materials at different depths from 10 to 300 mm.
The most commonly used in construction are special construction moisture meters of the conductometric and dielectric type. These are devices that are small devices for measuring the moisture level of materials for both internal and external works. They are quite simple to use.
An alternative way to identify problem areas of the pipeline is to use such a device as an acoustic water leak detector. These devices with high accuracy are able to localize the leak. When leaking water creates an ultrasound that is not perceived by the human ear. A leak detector picks up this sound through an ultra-sensitive microphone and plays it through headphones.
Thus, the stronger the sound, the closer the leak. And to search for leaks in underground utilities, in addition to a microphone (geophone), forming gas is used which contains hydrogen (H2). Hydrogen is pumped into the pipe system. Due to the fact that hydrogen is the lightest gas, it flows out of a pipe crack along with water and is captured by a chemical leak detector sensor.