A water leak can cost you a lot of money. Even something as a dripping faucet can end up costing you hundreds of dollars over the course of a year.
It can be a lot more serious when the leak is inside a wall. For starters, the size of the leak could be considerably larger than a dripping faucet. Alongside this, the water can damage materials in your home, including undermining the structure.
In short, if you think you have a leak you need to get it checked out. Finding the leak inside a wall isn’t always easy but the right technique will help you resolve it.
Signs Of A Water leak
It’s a good idea to know what signs tell you there is a water leak in the walls:
- Water stains on ceiling, walls, or floors
- Mould in unusual areas, especially if it’s not the bathroom
- Peeling paint & wallpaper.
- Musty smell
- Warped flooring
This list is not definitive but the above are common signs that you have a water leak. Now, you simply need to locate it.
Dye Penetrant Testing
If you’re considering dye penetrant testing then you need to get professional assistance. In effect, a dye is added to the wall and allowed to seep into the wall. It will be aided by the water leak. An imaging device can then monitor the path of the water, it will illuminate pathways through the wall. These are routes that water can take.
In most cases, the dye will not penetrate the actual leak spot as the pressure of outgoing water is too high. This will help you to identify where the leak is and then you’ll need to access it.
Cutting The Wall
Cutting sections out of the world can be seen as a way of tracing the leak. While this can help you to locate a leak it is best if it is used in conjunction with the dye penetrant test as this will identify the right area. If you simply start cutting the wall you may cause a lot of unnecessary damage.
Cutting a section out carefully will allow you to locate the water pipes and then see if they are leaking. If they are not but are wet then the leak is above the cut-out section.
These are simple meters that can be pointed at your wall and will tell you how much water is in the wall. The lower the figure generally the better but you would expect all the walls in one building to be roughly the same. If one is significantly wetter you’re likely to be looking at the site of the leak.
Rent an infrared camera and point it at your wall. You’ll immediately see colours, red indicates warmth, blue equals cold. Water will be cold, if you see large areas of blue or even purple then your wall is cold and wet, meaning it is likely you have a leak.