Hydrogen leak testing is a method to find leaks in underground piping and cables. Subsurface leaks can be difficult to find for obvious reasons. By using a mixture of hydrogen gas ( 5% H2 mixed with 95% N2 as a tracer) pumped into a pipe or cable and tracing its escape, a leak can be detected via the Hydro-Lok Hydrogen Leak Detector. Find leaks fast and inexpensively with the Hydro-Lok Underground Pipe Leak Detector.
Why Use Hydrogen as the tracer gas for underground pipe leaks?
- Hydrogen is a very high energy gas and a small molecule
- Background of hydrogen in air is very low thus providing good leak resolution
- Low cost gas that is abundantly available and can be created
- Hydrogen sensor offers great durability and robustness
- Sensor is very sensitive to hydrogen and relatively inexpensive
What Applications Can the Hydro-Lok be used?
- Underground Water Lines
- Underground Gas Lines
- Telecommunication Lines
- Swimming Pools
- Steam Lines
Where to Use the Hydro-Lok as an Underground Pipe Leak Detector
- Isolate the underground line so that the hydrogen tracer gas mixture can be released into the pipe.
- Determine what depth the pipe is below the ground and the type/density of the underground soil/material.
- If the pipe is 2 ft. underground, it may only take 30 minutes for the tracer gas to surface. If it is much deeper and the material is concrete, the period could be as long as overnight.
- Inject the hydrogen tracer gas into the line pressurizing as much as possible without damaging any component in the piping system. Pressure is a major factor in leak rate, but keep in mind that leaking water lines expel a lot of tracer gas.
- Once you feel the tracer gas has surfaced, walk the line of the pipe, probing every foot or so until a leak is detected.
- Measure the leak rate in the area where indicated closely and determine the point of highest reading.
- The leak should be located within a 3 foot circle of where the highest leak rate is indicated.