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Old 06-22-2010, 09:00 PM   #1
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Dye for finding a leak?


I have a leak someone in 1 of two bathrooms, either in the sinks, toilets, or bathtubs, is there any dye I can use to find out which one is leaking?

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Old 06-23-2010, 04:04 AM   #2
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Dye for finding a leak?


Yep. It called food coloring. Do not use anything that will stain your fixtures.
Good luck!
Mike

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Old 06-23-2010, 07:19 AM   #3
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Dye for finding a leak?


Quote:
Originally Posted by abefroman View Post
I have a leak someone in 1 of two bathrooms, either in the sinks, toilets, or bathtubs, is there any dye I can use to find out which one is leaking?
Note that if the leak is in a drain line, and it's downstream from multiple fixtures, your results may be misleading unless you test least two upstream fixtures - for example your dye test might indicate a given fixture was leaking, but also have would give a "positive" result from any fixture upstream of the leak.

Also, you may be tempted to use the result to "locate" the leak source based on where it becomes apparent - this information can be useful as long as you keep in mind that it's common for drain plumbing leaks to manifest at finished surfaces at a considerable distance from the source, here's a example from a recent leak investigation:




where water from a leaking roof drain traveled around 10 feet – including past the 2x4” support, before it dripped down onto the ceiling below, traveled along a drywall seam, and became visually apparent on the ceiling two truss cavities over from the drain line, at the opening nearest the center of the room:




so your dye test could easily be misleading as to the source of your leak if you depend on the visible leak "location" to narrow down the source, which is an easy mistake to make as it's tempting to identify a "source" which "seem to make sense" if you assume a closer but incorrect source for a leak.

----------------

You may have done this already, but if not a simple first step in diagnosing such leaks is to take each toilet bowel between your knees and attempt to rock it sideways and front-to-back, and then attempt to pivot it side-to-side; if you find one that's loose on the floor, that's you likely culprit.

Another possible diagnostic step, if it's a fairly active leak, is to run the fixtures in only one bathroom for a few minuets, and observe the results. If it's a slower leak, don't use one for a day or two.

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