# Plumbing leak probability

• posted on November 9, 2003, 3:39 pm
I'm curious as to whether the probability of a plumbing leak increases in a straight line, or exponentially as the water pressure increases.
Can anyone clear up this mystery for me?

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• posted on November 9, 2003, 6:08 pm
Most types of leaks (hotwater heater excepted) change only in degree with pressure. Low pressure will not reduce leaks, only make them leak slower.
High pressure can break out weak points and things like washer hoses, but for the most part, pressure has little to do with the number lf leaks.
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Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math

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• posted on November 10, 2003, 1:19 am
I'm not sure I made myself clear. I'm looking to find out whether the likelihood of a leak increases in direct proportion to an increase in pressure (ie. if the pressure is increased by 20%, does the probability of a leak increase by 20%, or does the probability increase by a greater amount as the pressure approaches the burst point of the pipe)?
Darro
On Sun, 09 Nov 2003 18:08:00 GMT, "Joseph Meehan"

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• posted on November 10, 2003, 7:06 am
Darro wrote:

If the pressure is caused by an upcoming party, and the leak is in the dishwasher, then yes.

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• posted on November 10, 2003, 9:57 am
Simple answer, I don't believe so.
--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math

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• posted on November 10, 2003, 3:26 pm

Likelihood of a leak probably increases in _less_ than direct proportion to an increase in pressure until you start getting close to burst point.
Likelihood of leaks is far more dependent on other factors - such as corrosion effects, poor workmanship and defective/damaged materials.
While increased pressure will accelerate the occurance of leaks, unless you have the other factors, it's going to make very little difference until you start getting close to the burst point.
[Burst point being defined as the burst strength of the weakest part of the system - eg: poor joints, physically damaged pipe, etc.]