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Old 10-26-2010, 10:55 PM   #1
tkutch
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Default Running water in Pipes

I need some advice. My house was built in 1998 and I live in Texas. I just noticed the other day (
about 2-3 days ago) my bath tub had a running water sound. Well I have gone to my meter 3 times now and its not moving at all (like it would if it was a leak). Today I finally turned everything off from the meter and went to my tub and noticed the sound was gone. So I turned the main water line on and the sound came back. So then I turned off every faucet,toilet, and any other water line I could find in the house. When I turned off my faucets in the same bathroom as tub I noticed the sound in the pipes to the faucet. This is the only room with this sound. So I couldn't figure out what to turn off since when all were of individually the sound kept going. I went and double checked the meter and its not spinning at all or even budging.

What gets me is if I turn off the water from the meter the sound goes away. Anyone have any ideas?

Also my water temp has not changed nor has the pressure.



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Old 10-26-2010, 11:11 PM   #2
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Several things to check. Check your toilet tank, a lot of times the fill tube going into the flush valve is pushed below the water level and it will siphon and make the sound your describing. I know it has nothing to do with the tub but check that out first. Also, spot check the meter. Look at the dial and numbers, mark the location of the dial, arrow whichever you have. Don't run anything for an hour, turn off icemaker to fridge, water to humidifier etc. Then look at it in an hour and see if it has moved. If your tub were leaking or dripping the water would be showing up somewhere. Also, check the T&P discharge for your water heater.
Another thing to check is to see how long it takes your ballcock to cut off as the water fills in your toilets. Sometimes they can take a long time towards the end of the fill cycle. Let us know if any of these things help.



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Old 10-26-2010, 11:20 PM   #3
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I have checked toilets and no luck there. Its not continually filling. I also checked this when I turned the water off to all toilets and sound still existed.

As for the meter the longest I have continually checked it is about 15 minutes. Nothing budged. The reason for only 15 minutes is because my wife or I accidentally turn something on. My meter reader is the kind with numbers and red dial. then a silver spinner inside the red dial that moves like CRAZY.

I have checked my WHOLE house for water somewhere. I have pulled up carpet in corners and checked outside. Its hard to tell outside since we got rain on Saturday but no standing water which I would think I would have since we got a good amount of rain on saturday.

How do I check the TP discharge on water tank?

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Old 10-26-2010, 11:32 PM   #4
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Ok I have noticed the meter barely spinning. The silver piece spends a cycle every minute if that. Whats the best way to find leaks?

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Old 10-27-2010, 12:20 PM   #5
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First, turn off the hot water heater and see if it stops. That would tell us if it is on the hot side or the cold side of the lines.
The T&P line comes off of your heater and should run to the outside of your house. It is open on the other end. Your T&P is either on the top of the heater or the side. Sometimes, it just has a short piece and is ran a few inches from the floor. They can run slowly and the discharge is going outside so you wouldn't know it unless you walked by the discharge outside.
Is your house on a slab or two story?

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Old 10-27-2010, 12:26 PM   #6
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I just solved a leak recently and it was a bear. Lets hope it is a faulty T&P, but for me, it was necessary to isolate my irrigation lines from the residential lines. This is when I discovered a broken PVC fitting under a concrete slab, which led to my sprinkler valves.

http://www.plumbingforums.com/forum/f13/pvc-under-slab-454/

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Old 10-31-2010, 04:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkutch View Post
So then I turned off every faucet,toilet, and any other water line I could find in the house.

I am presuming you turned off the angle stop supplies to the fixture.

When I turned off my faucets in the same bathroom as tub I noticed the sound in the pipes to the faucet. This is the only room with this sound. So I couldn't figure out what to turn off since when all were of individually the sound kept going. I went and double checked the meter and its not spinning at all or even budging.

Every angle stop is off and you still hear the noise.
You may have a leak on the system under your concrete slab. Meters don't always spin with very small leaks
To isolate hot from cold may require additional work. If you have any single handle faucets (Especially MOEN )You need to turn off the angle stop supplies to them. They have a potential for crossing water through them even when turned off.

We test for this by turning off meter and pumping system up with CO2 or compressed gas.
Or put a guage on isolated hot and cold system ( at laundry ) and turn off meter. Do they hold pressure. If one drops you have a leak
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Old 11-04-2010, 06:25 PM   #8
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Mr David is correct: What your describing is a Slab leak. This is not a do it yourself type job. Its even a bit of a specialty for plumbers. meaning not all plumbers are experienced and competent in leak detection, those will ususaly call out a leak detection company to find the leak then they will do repairs/repipe/re-route.

You can't always rely on meter movment to prove the abscence of a leak especially the smaller leaks, Ive run across this several times. the sound is moving water. if you still hear it with a every possible leak or drip source accounted for, lightly or otherwise, a running toilet, dripping faucet, ice makers, R.O Systems,lawn sprinkler valves, hose bibbs all tightly holding. Then the next step is to call a pipe and leak detection service

(the Moen or Mixit cross over condition usually don't not make any sounds, only affects temperature)

We will verify the above then listen for the two loudest fixtures, the leak will be bewteen them on that loop (if copper)
(if Galvanized repairs can be done but I do not recommend it. move straight to a Full or partial repipe or reroute.

I would locate the manifolds for a reroute, For a conventional dig up repair I would locate the pipes then pinpoint locate the leak. Hot water gives one more tool to use, heat (digital thermometer) In order to hear the smaller leaks better we often administer pressurized Air Or C02 or helium to the piping system with water on and off to increase sounds and listen to it with and without water on, to help us hone in on the leak.

Depending on where the leak is will determine the cost involved and possibly the repair method best suited for this particular situation.

Depending on history of the home and neighborhood with regard to slab leaks it may be the best route to repipe everything up out of the ground as one leak may mean more. More than one slab leak almost always mean more down the road.

Repiping is always the best and ultimate answer for slab leaks, No more tearing up floors, it just costs more so most try to do the minimum.
but that is there gamble not the plumbers.



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