Fireline leak detection: what to look for

Fireline leak detection: what to look for

Identifying fire line leaks are easier than you think with these simple tips

Fire line leaks are dangerous, and can pose a potential disaster if left unattended (or worse, undetected). Fire line leak detection is a complex and costly process which is not always successful, as fireline leaks are often very difficult to identify. Underground leaks are often the main culprit, yet there can be plenty of other less apparent causes.

Here are six hidden causes to explore in order to facilitate accurate fire line detection:

  1. Jockey pump running every 30 seconds or less
  2. An overactive duty pump
  3. Subsidence cracks
  4. Junction leaks
  5. Seam leakage on the pipes
  6. Faulty hydrant connections

How do I Identify if there is a Fire Line Leak?

Fire lines tend to leak more than domestic pipes dueto the fact that, whereas domestic pipes can have 8-bar pressure, fire lines have a slightly higher pressure which can fluctuate anywhere between 8 – 16 bar. Water leaks in underground, pressurised pipes may make many different sounds: a Hissing or Whooshing sound is often detected from pipe vibration and orifice pressure reduction, splashing sounds from water flowing around the pipe, rapid beating or thumping sounds from water spray striking the wall of the soil cavity, or alternatively, small clinking sounds of stones and pebbles bouncing off the pipe. Since the sounds travel on the pipe walls better than through the soil, LeakDtech advise customers to listen at the hydrants, valves, and meters first to detect a leak.

Fire line leaks can be caused by other factors as well, including premature rusting of pipes caused by misdirected electric currents, driving over piping with heavy trucks or equipment, poor initial installation, leaking joints or valves, or high pressure from open and closing valves.

Visit LeakDTech for expert consultancy on fire line leaks and more.