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Water Main Leak Detection

We understand the anxiety that arises from knowing you have a water mains supply pipe leak but not knowing where it is. Nobody wants to have to damage their property foundations searching for the source and risking a huge repair bill.

We use the trace and access methods to reliably detect leaks in water main supply pipes. This non-invasive approach saves you money.

Our highly dedicated team of water mains leak detection experts are ready to help. We’re available 24/7 for mains water leak repair. Aspect can even send someone to arrive within an hour in an emergency, so give us a call.

WATCH: Water main leak detection

This video shows some of the non-invasive techniques used for water mains leak detection.

Our experts follow a methodical “trace and access” approach. They decide on the tests to use based on the evidence available to them and the results they get.

Detecting Water Leaks Underground

Who’s responsible for finding leaks in water main supply pipes?

Depending on the location, either the homeowner or the water company is responsible for the detection and repairs:

  • Water mains: larger pipes that transport water throughout the water line. Usually under roads and pavements. Water companies must maintain these.
  • Communication pipes: these carry water from the water mains to the property boundary. They’re also the water company’s responsibility.
  • Water meters: they’re usually outside of the property boundary. If they are, the water company is responsible for fixing leaks on them. If they’re within the property boundary, the property owner is responsible for maintaining them.
  • Supply pipes: these connect the water meter to the property up to the internal stop valve (also known as stop taps or stopcocks). If they’re under the property boundary, they’re the responsibility of the property owner to maintain and fix any leaks.

We can find any underground water leaks, but we can only expose and repair them if they’re within the property boundary. The water company must repair leaks outside of a property boundary.

If we detect a leak outside of the property boundary, let your water company know so they can investigate.

Find out more about property boundaries and underground leaks.

No hidden extras

What you get from Aspect

  • Experienced & vetted tradespeople
  • 24 hour availability for all trades
  • Dedicated technical support team
  • Aspect Guarantee on workmanship
  • Peace of mind from trade accreditation

Occasional extra costs

  • Parts and materials used
  • Collection of parts and materials

We won’t charge you for

  • Cost of parking
  • Fuel or travel time
  • Congestion Charge
  • ULEZ charge

Some of our accreditations

We're fully trade accredited. Aspect is registered with Gas Safe and the National Association of Drainage Contractors (NADC). All our leak investigation experts are vetted and trade accredited. In addition, the Aspect Guarantee covers our tradespeople's workmanship for up to 12 months.

When you book and Aspect leak detection expert you can count on getting the professional expertise you're looking for.

Water supply pipe leak detection

Leaks in pipes that run below ground usually have no visible signs. Unusually high water bills can be a sign of a water leak that the property owner needs to fix.

It means that detecting water main supply pipe leaks can be tricky. However, our tradespeople are equipped to find them no matter how deep they are, or what covers them. The technology is regularly used to detect leaks buried several feet beneath paths, patios and driveways.

Sometimes, the water pressure has dropped, but the water bills and meter readings are normal. This suggests that the leak is in the communication pipes before the meter. This would usually be outside of the property boundary. Although we can detect the location of these leaks, it will be your water company’s responsibility to fix them.

If the water supply pipe leak is traced to be under a property, the same techniques are used. Leaks can be detected beneath any type of internal floor covering.

Processes used for water mains leak detection

When our leak detection experts arrive on site. They’ll usually carry out the following procedures:

1. Checking for a leak:

  • A meter reading will be taken after turning off all devices. This will check if there’s continuous water flow, which suggests a leak.
  • For further confirmation, our tradesperson will do a pressure test. This is where the pipework is pressurised and then monitored. If a drop in pressure is detected, this would confirm that a leak is present.

2. Pinpointing the leak:

Scanning equipment will be used to mark the survey line (the path which pipes below ground have been laid).

  • Highly sensitive acoustic equipment is used. This works by detecting the subtle vibrations that water that’s under pressure makes when leaking from pipes. A highly sensitive microphone amplifies the vibrations into sounds.
  • Pipes can also be drained and filled with tracer gas. The gas is completely safe and inert. A device is used to detect the gas when it seeps out of the pipework. The gas penetrates any surface, including paving, concrete slabs, tiles and soil.

Sometimes, water main supply leaks are traced  indoors. In these instances, thermal imaging can also be used to help find the leak. Visit our underfloor leak detection page to find out more.

3. Visual confirmation:

After the detection methods have been used to find where the leak is, a small hole will be dug. This will be in a localised area and lets the tradesperson see the leak for confirmation.

4. Excavating for repairs:

Based on the visual assessment, a plan for repairs will be suggested. This could involve specialist excavation equipment depending on the size and depth of the problem.

We can usually estimate for repairs separately from the investigation work. Once repairs are done, we can quote for reinstatement.

Reinstatement could involve things like relaying a concrete slab if an existing one was broken while being dug up.

Need more info on water main leak detection? Someone from our team can call you.  Request a callback

Recent knowledge sharing articles

Insurance claim support

In our investigation report, we’ll provide all the information you need to make an “escape of water” insurance claim.

These types of claims allow you to make a claim for leaks that have caused water damage to your property.

If your insurance company has any questions after the repair and reinstatement process, get in touch. Our experts are happy to answer.

Account customers

We have a dedicated team of account handlers to support multi-site customers and commercial properties: Restaurants, Bars, Offices, Retail, Landlords, Letting Agencies, Hotels, Schools, Embassies, Care Homes and more

10% off our hourly rates when you book online.

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