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Utility Locator: Pipe Locators

Utility Locator: Pipe Locators


Utility Locator

Ground Penetrating Radar

Courtesy of MSU Campus Archaelogist

Utility Locators: Pipe Locators

Utility Locators are considered asnondestructive testing. Non-destructive testing is a mean of detecting cracks, problems and manufacturing defects in a material or surface without causing damage to it. The advantages of using utility locators are enormous, as it enables the expected use of the material or surface. It also helps without increasing construction costs related to replacement parts.

Utility Locators: Methods Used

Pipe locating tools usually are divided into– active tools and passive tools. Utility Locators systems are the ones that emit a sound when some leak or pipe is detected. Active pipe locating systems are more complex and they not only detect the pipe, but in the case, they detect a leakage on water pipes, they will also try to minimize or stop the water leakage.

Utility Locator: Advantages of a Pipe Locator Tool

Using a pipe locator will help you:

  • Identify the area where the pipe is located.
  • Minimize the amount of digging needed.
  • Detect and warn of possible unnoticed pipe crossings.
  • Reduce the possibilities of damaging other utilities.
  • Using specialized equipment, depth of buried pipes can be detected.
  • Save time on detecting the location of the pipes.
  • Easy to Use.

Utility Locator: Acoustic Pipe Locators

Acoustic pipe locators are an excellent resource when dealing with small pipes. They work depending on the vibrations produced in the pipeline. They require a transmitter that must be attached to one exposed end or extension of the pipe. This test is not recommended when pipe detection is far enough from the location of the transmitter. Plastic pipes might reduce the sound wave or not work as well as concrete or steel pipes. Soil type might reduce the quality of the sound waiting to be detected.

Utility Locator:Leak Detectors

Leak detectors are pretty similar to acoustic pipe locators. They emit a sound from a transmitter that is higher where the leak is occurring. They can work at three times the depth of an acoustic leak detector. Their main disadvantage is that they can get interference from outside noises and require a high specialized operator. Their cost is substantially higher than acoustic pipe locators.

Utility Locator: Ground Penetrating Radar

The operator is required to move until the disturbance of the signal is noticed on the equipment screen. Their effectiveness and accuracy are the best attributes that this equipment produces. Their accuracy also depends on external factors such as: soil moisture, soil texture and salinity and soil mineral composition. Their initial high cost is their main disadvantage, but they can be used where cost is not an issue.

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