Adding Leak Detection to Your Service Offerings

Adding Leak Detection to Your Service Offerings

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Adding leak detection to your list of services can be a lucrative move. Leaky pipes are a common occurrence, and homeowners are willing to hire a professional to fix the issue.

Trained leak detectors can locate the source of leaks without tearing up structures in the house in the process. If you are able to obtain the necessary tools and skills to do noninvasive leak detection, your business will benefit.

Benefits of doing in-house leak detection

Besides providing your company with another revenue stream, the main benefit is that you can fix water leak issues quicker, making customers happier and allowing you to move on to new jobs. A company could choose to contract out leak detection work to another firm, but if they are booked you have to wait to make the repair. Waiting a few days forces you to commit more time to a job that could be fixed the day you receive it. Adding leak detection gives you another revenue avenue and allows you to do your job more independently.

Understand the demand and talk to other experts

Before you start buying leak detection equipment, do some market research and see if there is a demand that you can fill. Check how many calls your company may get for leak detection services and ask customers you visit if they would or have benefited from leak detection services.

Check the competition in your area and see how many companies are providing leak detection and exactly what types of leak detection they are providing. Leak detection is a broad service since leaks can occur under a home, on the driveway, and in the street. You need more tools to check a leak under a concrete foundation as opposed to finding a simple leak in a sink.

Then do some research on what the best equipment is. When you subcontract out leak detection to another company ask the techs what equipment they use, watch them do their job, and then find the right suppliers to buy the equipment from. In my experience, most leak detection companies are willing to talk shop with plumbers and drain cleaners since you will still need their expertise for harder-to-detect leaks.

Practice and understand the homes you service

The best way to improve leak detection is for you and your team to practice using the new equipment. Practice in your office or in your own home. This will help you get familiar with the process.

The two machines you need to get started are a metal detector and an ultrasound leak detecting device. The metal detector connects to the waterline on top of the water heater and tells you how deep the pipes are. The ultrasound leak detector allows you to find the leak.

It is important that you understand the structural layout of homes in your area. Many home styles have similar layouts so it can help you detect more quickly where leaks might appear. Look at architectural plans from old and new houses and familiarize yourself with where the waterlines run. Knowing the layout of the homes lets you focus your search instead of blindly searching for waterlines. You can request public records to see some of these home layouts or you can Google search PDF layouts of different homes in your area.  

Know your limits

Lastly, if you feel like you can’t adequately detect a leak, don’t be afraid to call a more seasoned leak detection expert. Some leaks are too small for your average plumber to find and you might not have the necessary equipment to find the leak. The most important part is making sure the job gets done in a way that is easiest for the customer. It is beneficial to do your own leak detection, but only if you know your limits.

About the Author

Nelson Salas is the owner of Amigo Rooter & Plumbing in Goodyear, Arizona, a suburb of Phoenix. He has worked as a master plumber in Arizona and Texas for over 14 years.


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