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Detecting leaks in fresh water plumbing systems requires a combination of the proper equipment, experience, and determination. Sometimes leaks are easy to find and some leaks can be more difficult to find. Pinhole leaks not only waste money and water, they can cause damage to walls, floors, and electrical systems. Leaking pipes also create an environment for mold and mildew to thrive within a home. Another issue recently is the possible adverse action by insurance companies raising premiums or issuing non-renewal notices to homeowners with leaking pipes.

Florida is not alone when it comes to leaking water pipes. There are many other areas in the country that are experiencing the same problems. Pinhole leaks in copper plumbing are an extreme type of pitting corrosion. The specific causes for pinhole leaks have yet to be conclusively determined.
The suspected causes include:
  • Changes in water chemistry and chemical water compositions
  • Addition of chemicals during the water treatment process
  • Substandard piping, poor workmanship
  • "Aggressive water", which includes factors such as pH content, presence of chlorides, metal ions, and dissolved gases in the water
  • Exterior factors such electrolysis
According to the most recent data, the majority of leaks reported were in the cold water, horizontal copper tubing. In Florida, this means that most were under the concrete slab. Detecting leaks below the slab requires specialized equipment and experience. At Master Plumbers, we use high-quality ground sensor equipment, sound amplifiers, and stereo headphones to locate leaks within inches of the pinholes. For difficult or very small leaks, we sometimes pressurize the lines with air and water to make location more definitive.

When leaks are discovered, the option of repairing the leak should be considered. Slab leak repairs require the floor to be chipped or jack hammered for access to the piping. After the concrete is removed, dirt is removed from around the pipe, and a repair coupling can be used to make the repair.
Please note that in Florida, only authorized and licensed plumbing companies are able to perform repairs on plumbing. There are some leak detection companies that are not plumbers, and they are not licensed to perform the repairs. Our suggestion is to always use a leak detection company that is a licensed plumber as well.
Serving all of Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and Lee County
Call (941) 747-9700
pipe repair
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