Irrigation System Leak Detection – Thinking outside the box!
Although not especially common, underground leaks in irrigation systems can be difficult to locate as they can cover large areas of landscape.
The good news is that the signs that you have some sort of leak are easy to spot, allowing you to take action quickly.
When you have a leak in your irrigation system, the soil around the area of the leak will quickly become sodden, and there is also a high risk that your entire irrigation system will become seriously damaged.
Upon discovery of the problem, it is essential that you engage the services of a water leak detection residential specialist company before the problem gets any worse.
Water Meter Tests
The Dedicated Irrigation System Water Meter Test
We can take things a step further by trying to isolate your irrigation system from the rest of the house.
Depending on the complexity and size of your irrigation system, you may even have a separate dedicated water meter for your irrigation system, but let’s assume, for the purposes of this article, that this is not the case.
Locate the stopcock inside your house and ensure it is properly closed off. Now perform the same test as above.
If the water meter shows any use of water at all, then this demonstrates without any question that the leak is occurring outside the property, which essentially means that it can only be the irrigation system.
The Household Water Meter Test
There is a straightforward test you can do to confirm a leak on an irrigation system, it involves testing your water meter.
First, take a meter reading and then turn all of the taps off, including your irrigation system.
Leave everything in this state for approximately three hours, and then check your water meter reading.
If there is no leak, then by process of elimination, the water meter reading should not have changed.
If it has changed at all, then this is all the evidence you need to confirm that you have a water leak.
Sprinkler / Irrigation System Leak Detection Equipment
At ADI Leak Detection, all of our engineers have access to numerous tools with high tech technology to help find the source of any leak fast. These include some of our own proprietary systems that we have developed exclusively for our engineers. Some of the systems we use include:
Acoustic Leak Microphones
Sound travels over a much longer distance, and one of the key problems with any irrigation system is that it can be installed over a large area, making it much more of a challenge to find any leak.
Acoustic leak detectors can help our engineers to listen and identify where a leak is coming from, quickly reducing the area of the search.
Tracer Gas Leak Detection
This involves forcing gas into the irrigation system. When the gas escapes out of the leak, our special hydrogen sensors will be able to locate with precision the source of the leak.
Leak Correlators are very powerful electronic devices specifically designed to find a leak in a pressurised pipe. The system works by placing two or more sensors in contact with the pipe on either side of any suspected leak.
The correlators then send out a radio signal, which will be returned when it hits the leak. The system is then able to use this information to target with pinpoint accuracy the exact site of the leak.
Irrigation Leak Detection Case Study
We were called to deal with a problem on a large property where two other leak detection companies had failed. The was an indication of a leak because of a high water bill but nothing else to go on.
We arrived to discover that this was a highly complex system comprising sprinkler heads over 14 different zones, all run by a computer. Just to make things even more complicated, the pop-up lawn sprinklers were not isolatable.
This is a serious complication because it removes the option of testing the pipes when you cannot seal them from both ends.
First, we had to stop the water flow from the sprinklers to fix the problem. However, because it was one complete and sealed system, and there was no option to take the sprinklers apart, if we stopped the water flow, then the sprinklers wouldn’t pop up.
Our solution was to leave the water on initially to force the pop-up sprinklers to rise from the ground and then use a pair of grips to hold the sprinklers up once the water was turned off. We then cut about 2 inches of 50 mm MDPE pipework.
Because we needed the pipework to fit snugly around the sprinkler, we cut out a section down the pipe’s length, making the pipe’s diameter slightly smaller.
We then created a seal by placing a latex rubber glove inside the pipe and then placing it over the tightly gripped sprinkler, sliding it over the jet. Two 40-60mm jubilee clips were then placed over the pipe either side of the jet over the pipework making a seal out of the glove.
We repeated this process on all of the sprinklers, which then enabled us to carry out a full non-invasive leak detection test on the system.
As a consequence of our engineers’ knowledge and expertise, we were able to locate a total of four leaks in the system, using pressure testing solving the problem in one visit, a problem that two previous companies had been unable to solve.
Contact ADI for Garden Sprinkler System Water Leak Detection Services
If you have any inclination that you may have a leak in your garden sprinkler or irrigation system, then it is imperative that you act quickly. We are ready to help no matter where you are in England, Scotland or Wales.
Our helpful customer service team await your call today…
Our Other Specialist Services
- Bathroom Leaks; Bathtubs, sinks, toilets and shower leaks all make finding bathroom leaks a job for professional leak detectors.
- Ceiling water leak; Water leaks through your ceiling could be caused by a structural or plumbing issue.
- Slow Underfloor Heating leaks are found using tracer gases, acoustics and thermal cameras to pinpoint the leak locations.
- Commercial Leak Detection Specialist ; Our focus is to find your leak quickly and efficiently, allowing your company operations to continue unaffected.
- Structural Leak Detection – We test all likely sources which include windows, doors, visible cracks, hidden roof leaks, chimneys and balconies.
- Leaking swimming pools; We find leaks using pressure testing, acoustic, tracer gases and other in house testing procedures.
- Underground Water Leaks – Our underground leak detectives specialize in tracing water main leaks and drain leaks.
- Water Damage – Our teams are experts at tracing the source of water damage!