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How Do Plumbers Find Leaks When There Are No Visible Or Audible Signs?

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When your water bill is much higher than it was before, yet you don't see any water damage or hear dripping, you face a frustrating situation. You know there's likely a leak somewhere, but if you can't see it or hear anything, how do you find it? Plumbers have a few ways of finding exactly where a leak is, so if you know there's something going on, get your phone. You need to call a plumbing company as soon as possible and get that pipe fixed.

Tracking Moisture Levels

First, the plumber might use a special device to track moisture levels in your walls and floor. If there's a leak, that water is going somewhere, and the device will detect higher moisture in the general area of the leak. Even if the water itself isn't present, the humidity created by the presence of the water will be. Once the leak has been pinpointed, the plumber will see if they can access the pipe without tearing open the floor or wall. However, if they can't, then they will have to go through the floor or wall, and you may need to arrange for additional work to restore the spot to its former state. The plumber can give you a breakdown of just how long the work will take and what exactly is involved.

Using Specialized Audio Equipment

Plumbers may also use audio equipment that lets them hear dripping or running that may be too quiet for you to hear on your own. Water makes noise, and if you have a leak, then there will be sound somewhere. If it's behind a wall or in the floor, it's going to be very muffled at best, and inaudible to your ear at worst. By using a microphone and headphones that let the plumber block out background noise, the plumber can listen for telltale hissing or dripping, and find the spot where the water is escaping.

Trying an Infrared Camera

Finally, a leak will often leave a temperature signature behind, a spot that's either colder or warmer than the surrounding material. A thermal or infrared camera can help spot those leaks. They aren't always exact, but they definitely help.

Leaks are not fun, and neither is having to deal with a wall or floor that's been opened up for access. But the faster you find that leak, the smaller the amount of damage will be - and the less work that will need to be done to fix the pipe in question.