Leak Expert Services
Leak Expert

The Leak Detection Guide

With the know-how of detecting and fixing a leak, you can remedy issues swiftly.
Our leak detection guide covers how to detect a leak, fix and report a water leak.
It also tackles the nitty-gritty of costs and insurance.

Leak Detection Guide

Be Your Own Water Leak Detector

Being proactive is the best way to detect and fix a leak before it gets worse. You can take the first step by monitoring your monthly water usage. In this way, you will spot water losses soon. While leaks from dripping taps and toilets are easily spotted, underground or undetected leaks are often a bigger cause of waste. By being alert you’ll save money and protect our water resources.

Leak Detection Guide Menu

Detect a Leak 101

Once you suspect an uncontrolled flow of water, it is time to find the leak on your property.
  1. Stop the water flow. If you do not see a leak but notice a difference in your monthly water usage, turn off all water on the premises.
  2. Do not flush toilets. No water should be passing through the water meter.
  3. Record the water meter reading.
  4. Check the water reading again after 15 minutes. If you still see the meter move while all taps are off, you likely have an underground, geyser or toiler water leak.  These options often direct water outside or to sewage systems that are difficult to detect through superficial inspection.
  5. Turn off the isolation taps to toilets and recheck the water meter.  Note down any changes.
  6. Switch off the geyser’s stop tap, return to the meter to note any changes once more.
If the water the meter still runs after eliminating all possibilities, you likely have a leak underground or behind a wall. However, only a water leak detection specialist can pinpoint the problem. They will need to test and identify the problem with a specialised water leak detector and repair it accordingly.

Trickling Down to Tricky How-To Scenarios

House leak detection can be complicated, especially when leaks are behind walls, in a pool or under a concrete floor. Fortunately, the trickiest of situations are 100% manageable by leak experts.

How to Detect a Leak in Your Pool

Like finding a leak indoors, you can detect a leak in your pool through a process of elimination. In doing so, you will see if the pipe system, structural issue or fittings are to blame.

  1. Check if the leak is active while the pump is active by switching it on and off. If the leak runs while the pump is off, you may have a structural problem.
  2. Assess the bubbles coming from the pump and jets. Many bubbles could indicate a leak on the pool plumbing’s suction side, between the pump and the weir basket.  This type of leak does not cause massive water loss but can lead to a slow leak even while the pump is off.
  3. Use food colouring in leak-prone areas, like jets, weir and pool lights. If the test area absorbs the colour, you have found your culprit.
  4. Inspect each panel of a solar-heated pool. Grommets can have fine fissures that cause water to run into gutters.
  5. Enlist help from a leak expert to find underground leaks with tracer gas.

How to Detect a Leak Under a Concrete Floor

There are several approaches to detecting a water leak sub-surface. Yet, they are more complex and vary depending on the property’s construction type.

In such a situation, you will need a leak detection specialist’s assistance.

In the meantime, you can isolate the general location of the leak by:

  • Identifying the main water supply and water meter.
  • Creating a general mapping system by pinning the isolation valves and water entry points.
  • Shutting the isolation valve/s to make leak testing possible.
  • After these steps, the specialist can use a leak detection method to find the affected area.

Tracer gas, a penetrating underground scanner, or audio/sonic systems are sure to detect a leak with superior accuracy.

The team will then excavate a small area and repair the damaged or faulty pipe.

Tried all options but still want to know if your water is leaking? Contact a Cape Town Leak Detection and Plumbing Specialist today!

Report a Water Leak

How to Report a Water Leak

You can report the water leak to your municipality or a leak expert to arrange repairs. After completing the leak detection steps above, you can assess where to report a water leak.

  1. Identify whether the leak is outside or on your property. The municipality is responsible for leaks beyond your  boundary. Unless you are indigent, you need to tend to leaks within your walls.
  2. Leaks beyond your property are the city council’s responsibility. Contact the City of Cape Town’s call centre at 0860 103 089 and choose option 2. Alternatively, go to the City of Cape Town online fault reporting page and create a service request or visit the City of Cape Town Water and Sanitation Department website.
  3. Report a water leak on your property to your preferred Cape Town leak detection specialist and plumber near you. After urgently addressing the problem, the plumber will issue a report specifying the details of the leak.
  4. Use the leak detection report to communicate the damages to the city council. You can apply for a rebate on water usage due to pipe bursts or leaks beyond your control.
  5. You can also use the leak detection report to assist in insurance claims.

Where to Report a Water Leak

Property zoning directs where you need to report a leak.


Single Title
Homeowners can call on the plumber of their choice to investigate, detect and repair a leak.  You can use the reports and tax invoices you receive from the specialist for possible city council rebates and insurance.

Sectional Title
Water leaks need to be reported directly to the body corporate or a trustee of the complex. If there is a delay in response, you can contact a plumber to determine if the leak is on private, shared or council property. You can then continue with the necessary repairs or report a leak accordingly.


Like single title private homes, industrial or commercial property owners can call the plumber of their choice. If the leak is outside the building or complex, you can contact the city council to address the problem.

Fix a Water Leak

You can fix some water leaks with basic skills, but many require advanced expertise. So before taking to your toolkit, diagnose the difficulty of the necessary repairs. That said, leaks underground or within walls are best left to a seasoned water pipe and leak detector.

3 Ways to Fix Water Leaks

Plumbing Epoxy Putty: Temporary Solution

You can use one of the following methods to fix an accessible water leak. Remember to turn off the water supply and dry the area before working on pipes.

The temporary fix is ideal for stopping a leak while you wait for the plumber to arrive or as you purchase the necessary supplies to repair the pipe.

  1. Put on gloves and knead the epoxy putty until it has a consistent colour.
  2. Mould the putty around the leak, making sure the layer is roughly 1.3cm thick.
  3. Flatten and tape the putty’s edges for a watertight seal.
  4. Wait 10 minutes for the putty to harden before turning on the water supply.

Clamping: Suitable for Small Leaks Only

  1. Purchase the correct size pipe clamp. It should be long enough to cover the leaking pipe.
  2. Position the rubber gasket on the leak and hold it in place.
  3. Place the clamp over the gasket and tighten the bolts with a

Slip Coupling: Replaces the Damaged Section

  1. Find a slip coupling of the same diameter, material and type as the leaking pipe. Also, ensure it is long enough to replace the leak.
  2. Use the slip coupling to mark where you need to cut the leaky pipe.
  3. Cut out the faulty section with a pipe cutter or hacksaw.
  4. Scrape inside and outside of the cut ends of the remaining pipe
    with a deburring tool.
  5. Fit, secure and tighten the slip coupling onto the cut ends of the

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Cost of Leak Detection

Water leaks can become costly quickly – especially when they are severe. Not only is water loss expensive but exceeding the water use threshold for your property may also lead to additional costs. You can calculate the total after confirming the service fees and the cost of the water loss. Both aspects will be revealed when the repairs are complete.

A few factors determine the cost of water leak detection: the location, cover type and size of the affected area. As a result, the procedure can vary from an hour to multiple days of labour.

Leak detection services typically range from R1 200 per hour but depend on the provider as well as the distance they need to travel to your property. Materials and consumables, like tracer gas, will also impact the total.

Insurance and Water Leak Detection

Water leaks may be  inconvenient and expensive, but there is good news.

Property insurance will likely cover fees related to a water leak. Structural insurance is designed to assist with the cost of sudden and active leaks, like a burst water pipe not  caused by general wear and tear.

The property owner or insurance company will appoint a water leak detector to locate the leak and repair it accordingly. Once repairs are complete, you will receive a leak detection report which you can use to apply for a water rebate from the municipality and submit the insurance claim.

If you want a more comprehensive home insurance policy, consult your
insurance company to discuss possible inclusions of defects relating to water

Fix the Leak with Detection Experts in Your Area


CBD to Woodstock, Pinelands to Camps Bay


Bellville to Durbanville, Kraaifontein to Parow


Plumstead to Hout Bay, Rondebosch to Muizenberg


Milnerton to Melkbos, Atlantic Beach to West Beach


Strand to Somerset West, Stellenbosch to Paarl