Leak Detection

Ms C.

Address: Halstead
2 storey, end of terraced house built early 1900’s. Shared access to rear gardens, with neighbouring detached property.

Background:

Our Home owner moved in to property late 2019. She noticed that her monthly water bills were higher than expected. Our customer discovered, (by turning of the internal mains stop valve and checking the water meter), that the meter was still turning.

Their water supplier was informed and they attended the above-mentioned property. After replacing the meters to both properties, they declared that any leak was on the owner’s side of the meter and therefore the customer’s responsibility.

Inspection:

As usual, our BDMA Technician carried out an initial inspection. It was noted that the access way between both properties had an easily-identifiable trench line where, it appears, the mains water and gas lines are routed to each property.

Survey method:

Using thermal image technology, areas of low temperature were identified. Listening equipment was also used.

There were two areas identified by steps to pavement at the front of property, plus there was also damp patch in the access way. This was proven to be not escaping water, but as follows:

The damp patch in the access way is being caused from dripping water from an overflow pipe belonging to the other property. We recommend they are made aware of same.

Acoustic equipment was used to listen over the entire area of the access way and into the rear garden up to the stop valve in property. An area within the access way had crackling sounds and loose concrete. The loose concrete section was lifted and some soil removed.

This exposed a plastic storm drainpipe. The water movement heard by our listening equipment was down to water trickling through this pipe. After investigation, the soil and concrete were reinstated.

Further acoustic listening showed no results.

In consultation with our customer, our Technician was given permission to cut into the concrete in the rear garden by the wall where the mains stop valve was located on the other side. The intention being to expose the mains pipe, identify its type and listen directly to it with the acoustic equipment.

Having dug down around 0.5 metre, water began to rise up and at approximately 1 metre bubbling water could be seen. The mains supply was shut off at the metre. Our technician then increased the trench by widening it and at approximately 1.2 metres deep the mains pipe was located.

The mains pipe is an older black imperial type. The mains supply was turned back on and water could be seen escaping from the exposed section.

We attached a video to our report for the customer so that she could easily identify the issue.

Area was tidied up and at our customer’s request. Our Technician laid a cast iron plate, that was in the garden, over the trench to prevent people or her dog accidentally falling in, whilst our customer made decisions on how to rectify the faulty section and reinstate accordingly.

Our Recommendations:

Groundworks;
The trench around the area of the damaged pipe will need to be extended for access so that the repair can be carried out safely. Great care will need to be taken as there are storm and sewage pipes in the area to be excavated.

A minimum of 2m x 2m wide and 1.5m deep trench is needed.

Repair;
The damaged section will need to be cut out and a new 25mm MDPE pipe installed using 2 screw couplings plus a reducing kit depending on the size of the imperial pipe.

We recommend that the above-mentioned works are carried out without delay due to the escape of water and the obvious H & S risks whilst there is only a temporary cover.

Conclusion:

Our customer agreed to us carrying out all works as above-mentioned. This provided a complete solution to our customer’s issues.

One happy and satisfied customer!