Any tricks to find an underground water leak?

   #1  

MarkV

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I have county water at my place that runs about 800' feet of 1" PVC from the main to my house. Somewhere along the way I have developed a leak. My water bill makes that obvious. We have had rain off and on for the last few weeks so it has been impossible to find any wet areas that stand out along the run. Anyone have any tricks for locating bad spots before I start digging up the whole yard?

Thanks,
MarkV
 
   #2  

KYDan

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Check with your local water company some of them have sort of a ground stethascope that is made for listening for water leaks. Depending on the terrain there should be a wet area somewhere in the vicinity of the leak. If your winters our like ours, wet, this may be problematic. Good luck, it is a frustrating issue.
 
   #3  

xtn

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Confirm by watching your water meter spin when everything is turned off. Sorry, no other tips from me as my for experiences have all occurred when it was dry enough to find the muddy spots.
 
   #4  

moriboy

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I don't have any good answers for you, but I am subscribed to this thread. This problem has come up time to time for me in the past.
The only thing I could think of doing was digging test holes every 50-100 ft until I found mud. This time of year makes that difficult.
 
   #5  

JerryK

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If it a continuous run of PVC, I would say that the ovious leak spots would be at the ends, where the connections are made... But I doubt that they put in in one piece.... Sorry :)
 
   #6  

KYDan

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Are the joints glued or compression fit?
 
   #7  

kenmac

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We Look for the easy stuff 1 st. Then,dig up about every 50' -100' cut and air test.
 
   #8  

sdkubota

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Besides seeing an actual wet stop develop (if it ever does) there are some sensitive hearing devices used on large mains with marginal results. Generally leaks develop around any fittings so that is where I would first concentrate. Then if you feel it is somewhere along the 800' run...dig it up midway, cut the pipe and place a pressure gage on each side which gets you to 400'. Do it again which gets you to 200'...again, again, again. If the line is large enough you may be able to insert an additional line inside the pipe to supply your water.
 

J_J

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You could plug a moisture meter in the ground at every 20 ft from the meter and check high moisture levels.

Look for greener spots

Look for dark brown spots if the grass is dormant.

How many extra gal of water above normal use?

Has any one been digging along the water line path? Anything old or new planted along the line?

I had something similar, but it was the toilet fill float was hanging up.
 
 
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