Water Guide: The Importance of Leak Detection

Written by: Clarissa Drouillard

Water leaks in pipes and fixtures often go undetected for months because they are undetectable by sight alone—especially if underground or within walls. But new technology allows leaks to be identified using another method: acoustic leak-detection noise loggers. These small devices work by utilizing sound waves to distinguish leaks, including their relative size. As water in a leak leaves a pipe, it creates a distinctive noise that is received by the noise logger. They can also record the sound emitted to be analyzed up to several days later. This new technology can be costly, so it is often utilized by leak detection services during home and property consultations.

In a case study of one firm, pipes that were more than 60 years old were examined using noise loggers, resulting in six leaks being discovered. These leaks amounted to 26% of the facility’s average daily water usage.

On average, 10% of homes have water leaks that can account for up to 10% of their water bill. If we can eliminate the water wasted by household leaks alone, we can save one trillion gallons of water each year.

One of the simplest ways to determine if your household is leaking water is by observing the water meter before and after a period without using water. If the meter reading has changed, then water is leaking somewhere within the system. Noise loggers can be used to find the exact placement of these leaks so that they can be repaired.

While noise loggers may not be useful investments for the average consumer, both leak detection services and the commercial sector can utilize them in their effort to conserve our precious resource and reduce our environmental impact. Hopefully, water waste will continue to decrease as we become more water conscious and take the necessary steps towards protecting our limited supply. And in the near future, expect noise loggers to play a significant part in achieving our goals.



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