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View Full Version : How to locate water leak in yard?


DYI hunting
09-18-2010, 08:57 PM
We have 650 foot of waterline from the city meter to the house. Somewhere there is a leak, but there are no signs of leaking on the surface nor is there any nice green grass like you would expect to see. But there is a leak. I pressure tested the line by closing the valves at the house and the meter and it went from 75 PSI to 35 PSI in 2 hours plus the water bill is running high.

The water line is buried 2 1/2 to 3 foot deep and covered in red clay. When we did a perc test, our soil absorbs water really good so I guess the water is being absorbed or leaking over into an underground stream or our well.

How do I figure out where the leak is? Or is it a lost cause and I need to go rent a ditch witch and redo 650 feet of waterline. :cry:

rjcruiser
09-18-2010, 09:06 PM
Only thing I can think of is to dig a hole every hundred feet and t off of the original line...then pressure test...when you get a pressure reading low...you got your section that is bad.

Havana Dude
09-18-2010, 09:07 PM
My first thought would be to abandon this line and run another.............unless someone on here can give you a better idea. By the time you find the leak(if ever), you could have the other one done. IMHO

jbi1104
09-18-2010, 09:42 PM
You could hire a person that has leak detect equipment. They will find the leak and get within 3 feet or so.

meatseeker
09-18-2010, 11:43 PM
My first thought would be to abandon this line and run another.............unless someone on here can give you a better idea. By the time you find the leak(if ever), you could have the other one done. IMHO

x2 There was alot of water pipe used years back that was supposed to be better, but eventually started to get pin holes. I've dug it out before found a hole, spliced, hooked back up and still leaking. dig a few more feet and find more pinholes. My guess is lots of pinholes, thus no wet spot. Not saying this for sure but have seen this alot.

Gaducker
09-19-2010, 12:17 AM
x2 There was alot of water pipe used years back that was supposed to be better, but eventually started to get pin holes. I've dug it out before found a hole, spliced, hooked back up and still leaking. dig a few more feet and find more pinholes. My guess is lots of pinholes, thus no wet spot. Not saying this for sure but have seen this alot.


If the pipe is blue and flexable just run a new line that crap aint worth a plug nickel. I think its pex tube.

Dig a hole in the middle of your run and check both ways if you got leaks on bothsides run it again if on one side go half way again and test keep goin till you find it.

If it was mine I would run it again before I dug all them holes, more so since you have no wet spots.

Gentleman4561
09-19-2010, 01:04 AM
I would just run a new line. We had the blue pipe and figured out that it had tons of small pin holes. Not worth trying to find the leak.

hoochfisher
09-19-2010, 02:48 AM
Use a probe rod and follow the line. Probe every 3-5 ft. You will be able to tell the moisture difference on the rod.

cmghunter
09-19-2010, 08:59 AM
If the water line is black or blue,you'll save money running a new line.Once the pipe starts leaking it will continue year after year...You can use a leak detection company to locate most of the time they will be within 4' of the leak....jmo

Rays123
09-19-2010, 09:14 AM
If you have the equipment or access to some itll be way cheaper just to run your own line, if you were closer I could run it for you pretty cheap

shakey gizzard
09-19-2010, 07:33 PM
Replace with pvc if its the old polybutylene.

chiefsquirrel83
09-19-2010, 07:36 PM
U have city or Jackson Co. water???

DYI hunting
09-20-2010, 11:20 AM
Banks County water and it is 1" PVC that was installed 3 years ago by a contractor crew from the subdivision across the road.

Craig Knight
09-20-2010, 11:24 AM
Take jbi1104's advice. After doing this for 14 years+ that's your best bet.

DYI hunting
09-20-2010, 11:46 AM
Why do they lock meters? It sure would be easier to look at the meter and see if it is running.

Spotlite
09-20-2010, 12:21 PM
Use a probe rod and follow the line. Probe every 3-5 ft. You will be able to tell the moisture difference on the rod.
Yeap
My first thought would be to abandon this line and run another.............unless someone on here can give you a better idea. By the time you find the leak(if ever), you could have the other one done. IMHO
After probing, I would then abandon
Why do they lock meters? It sure would be easier to look at the meter and see if it is running.
Meters are locked to stop water waste. Some cities have an ordinance to lock off meters. You would be surprised at how many leaks are not repaired because the customer will not repair them until you cut the water off. It also has do with water permitting issues with how much the city is withdrawing to make the water drinkable. One leak for a customer is not bad, but what if you have 200 customers with leaks?

fatboy84
09-20-2010, 12:25 PM
If the pipe is blue and flexable just run a new line that crap aint worth a plug nickel. I think its pex tube.

Dig a hole in the middle of your run and check both ways if you got leaks on bothsides run it again if on one side go half way again and test keep goin till you find it.

If it was mine I would run it again before I dug all them holes, more so since you have no wet spots.

Yep....Blue Poly is terrible

There was a class action suit back in the 90's. Got mine replaced on their dime back then.

Milkman
09-20-2010, 12:29 PM
That is a VERY small slow leak if you still had pressure in the line after 2 hours.
It will cost you lots to replace 650 ft of line with the pipe and ditch costs , not to mention the mess it will make with all that mud all winter

Hiring someone to find the leak(s) and repair is probably going to be the least expensive and least invasive option.

buckshot4:13
09-21-2010, 08:26 PM
is there any reducing bushings in the line like maybe going down to 3/4" pipe when it gets near the house? If the bushing is put directly into the bell end it will leak every time. Let it leak until you find the wet spot because it will eventually get worse till it will be obvious.