I have a leak in my property and would like to establish the source of it. How can I do that?

When you discover a leak in your property it can be difficult to find out where the water is coming from.

A simple and cost effective way to find out, is by testing the water.

Option 1: Treated water is likely to contain chlorine, which is added to the mains water for sanitary reasons. Therefore, a good test to use is the Total Chlorine test. Chlorine levels in drinking water should be between 0.2 and 2.0ppm. The World Health Organisation has set a health based guideline maximum value of 5ppm (mg/l) for chlorine as a residual disinfectant in drinking water. Total Chlorine measures the amount of free and combined chlorine in water. A chlorine test works best when the leak contains fresh water because chlorine evaporates over time. If the water has been sitting for a while somewhere, then chlorine may have naturally disappeared and can not be detected anymore.

Option 2: Another option is to test the pH using wide range water pH test . The pH of water varies depending on its origin. Tap water should have a pH of 6.5 to 9.5. Rain water is usually more acidic, 4 to 5, due to its origin (primarily due to the presence of two strong acids, sulphuric acid (H2SO4) and nitric acid (HNO3)).

From customer feedback it seems that either one or both tests  are useful in establishing the source of a leak.

To use test strips to identify the source of a leak, it is best to test water from different sources around the property, note the result for each and then compare the results to the water in the leak:

  1. Test your tap water
  2. Test your rainwater (collect some or use water from a water butt or bird table in the garden)
  3. Test groundwater, potential streams, wells and other potential sources of the leak
  4. Test the water in the leak and compare all results to find a match

SimplexHealth Total Chlorine 0-10ppm Water Test (50 strips)

Total Chlorine Test:

These patented Total Chlorine water quality test strips have a high range of detection and are calibrated to be both accurate and sensitive.

Contains: 50 strips

Testing Levels: Method A: 0, 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 0.8, 4.0, 10.0 ppm (mg/l), Method B: 0, 0.05, 0.1, 0.15, 0.2, 0.5, 1.0 ppm (mg/l)

Total Test time: 33 seconds

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Water Wide Range pH Test Strips 2-12 (50 tests)

Extended Range Water pH Test:

These wide range pH test strips are the convenient measurement tool for pH. It covers nearly the whole pH range from 2 to 12, whilst still measuring smaller increments in the crucial range of 6 to 10, therefore providing accurate results.

Contains: 50 strips per bottle

Testing Levels: pH: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 6.5, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, 9.5, 10, 11, 12

Total Test time: 30 seconds

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Please note, that whilst it helps to test the water of the leak and the various water sources around a property, this may not be entirely conclusive. This will be the case when chlorine has evaporated from the water in the leak or the pH levels are too similar to make a clear distinction. A number of different tests may be necessary to eliminate potential sources of the leak.

Good luck with identifying the source of the leak!

Further Free Resources:

Got a question about water testing? Try our complete list of Free Water Testing Resources. Here are the most frequently read guides:

If you can’t find what you are looking for then please contact us, as we can source many other test kits. Discounts for bulk purchase available, please contact us to find out more.

Disclaimer: Only opinions based upon our own personal experience or information detailed in academic journals or other publications is cited. This has been done exclusively for anyone who is interested in this subject but is not intended to replace proper analysis. We cannot accept responsibility and liability of any kind which may result from the application of this information. We always recommend to consult an expert to discuss any test results or get a full recommendation on the specific subject and specific to your situation by an expert.

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