Leaking pipes are one of the most common issues we deal with at Nuflow. Many building managers are switching to a preventative plumbing maintenance approach but in the first instance it is fairly simple process to check your plumbing system for leaks. This article offers some easy ways to keep an eye out for issues before they become disasters.
Conduct a visual inspection
Not all of your building's plumbing is easily accessible or visible but it can be fairly easy to spot leaks. The key is looking at areas that may not have much traffic such as in basements and storage areas. If you find water pooling or water damage and have ruled out other sources (i.e rain, use of hoses etc) then you may have water pipe leaks on your hands.
Exercise your shut-off and isolation valves
This can be a bit time-consuming but is easy to do. These valves should be turned completely off and completely open, looking for leaks as you open and close them. Ideally, shut-off and isolation valves should be exercised several times a year but at least do it in the spring. This ensures valves will work as designed when needed. It also helps clear any mineral build up in the valves.
Check for leaks in common areas
Make sure toilet cisterns are not leaking, and sink traps are clear. If you have a community room with a kitchen, take a look at all taps and make sure drains are draining smoothly. Check ceiling tiles in hallways and other common areas looking for water spots and other signs of leaks.
Flush drains in parking areas
Make sure garage drains are flowing. Make sure grates and drain screens are clear of debris. If drains are slow, consider having them jetted to clear out sand, gravel, dirt and other debris that may have accumulated over the winter.
Pay particular attention to corrosion
Over time, different piping materials may have been connected or pipes may be hung with metal straps that can created corrosion. These areas are particularly susceptible to leaks, especially where connection have been made. If these areas are not currently leaking, this may be a good time to do a little preventative maintenance.
Compare water usage
Increasing water bills may be easily dismissed due to higher rates. You should, however, pay attention to total water usage. If usage has increased without an apparent reason, you could have a leak in a hidden area or even underground. This should be addressed promptly.
Review plumbing maintenance
It's a good idea to review your plumbing maintenance and repair expenses over the past few years. If they're steadily rising, chances are that they'll continue to rise. This could be due to ageing pipes, years of inadequate or patchwork repairs. If your building is over 20 years old, a cctv pipe inspection can be so valuable.
A pipe inspection by Nuflow gives you a full assessment the health of your plumbing system. You'll then have a much better overall look at your system, and where potential problem areas exists. If problems are significant, our Redline pipe relining solution is a less invasive, less expensive alternative to pipe replacement.
To book a pipe inspection and get a full health check for your building's plumbing system, Visit our booking page or call us on 1800 683 569 within Australia or 0800 168 356 in New Zealand.