tree service, water line breaks and water pressure ?

Problem 1.
Faucet water runs red/brown (think red clay) about 10 minutes after tree service drives their (big) crane truck across corner of yard to the driveway.
Q1: Coincidence or likely caused by the crane ?
Q2: Tree guys want me to believe that vibrations from the truck into the ground shook some rust loose in the water pipes, possible ?
Q3: If a tree removal service runs crane over the yard (shortcut to the driveway ) then runs over the water meter and or the ground above the line feeding house from water meter are they responsible for a break ?
Problem 2:
So now i want to find some proof evidence the water line is broken/cracked or not.
Q4: how does one proove the line has a break/crack without physical evidence like water coming up out of the ground ?
Q5: Are there any guidelines or standards for water pressure at the faucet ?
Q6: Who publishes the actual water pressure you should expect from the city water service ?
Thanks for any helpful replies.
robb
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
robb wrote:

it was caused by the crane

very likely, but possible. if so, then it should go away after running the water for a couple of minutes

they should have insurance and/or a bond for this. they are.

there will be, eventually. if not, you'd have to dig some. you could turn off all water taps in the house and look to see if your water meter is spinning. if there's a leak, it's going someplace.

no.
the city gets to decide what their correct pressure is. ask them.

Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'd say crane.

Possible. We sometimes get lots of rust after the water is worked on nearby or hydrants flushed.

I'm not a lawyer, but I'd say yes.

You need some evidence. No one is going to just take your word for it. If it is a serious leak, you'll know in a day or two. If the water clears and no puddles form, you are probably OK. Water line can be from 12" to 48" below grade depending on frost line in your area.

Can run from about 40# to over 100#. Check your local water company for some guidance.

No one that I'm aware of. The water company can tell you what they pump at, but line loss is normal. Put a pressure gauge on you line and your next door neighbor. They should be close.
If you notice a slow flow, check the aerators to see if they clogged from a lot of sediment being released.
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
robb wrote:

Sometimes things happen. I'd guess the truck probably pushed the line down enough to dislodge the built up deposits in the line. And it may or may not leak, and if it doesn't leak it may or may not in in the near or distant future. If it does then good luck proving it wouldn't have leaked anyway if the truck did or didn't drive over it. Are you good with a shovel?
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mar 1, 7:39 pm, FatterDumber& Happier Moe

if its a old line it may and likely crushed, pressure might be fine but flow low, as crushed line obstructs flow.
if the OP is concerned about the line gig it up and replace with PEX, which I would put in schedule 40 PVC for mechanical protection. plus if the line ever needs replace again just dig at either end and slide in new line, in PVC
document the lines condition when dug up, pictures videos etc. if its crushed or damage go after the tree guys.....
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You just don't have a clue do you? Service line these days is hdpe. And there is no reason to encapsulate it inside pvc. If the op replaces his entire service line the likelihood of him having to deal with it again in his lifetime is nill.
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

well if any line is in a area driven over mechanical protection is a good idea. espically good for rentals.
of course over my lifetime i have known 4 or 5 people who had to have service lines replaced from crushing
if i replace the gas line here i would do the same to protect it. PVC is cheap insurance. and the older i get the less digging thrills me:(
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 3/1/2011 3:18 PM, robb wrote:

Ever looked inside a steel pipe? It is scary. With the pressure inside the line much higher than outside it's unlikely that anything is getting in the line that wasn't there before.

Watch the meter when you have everything off.
If all this clears up do nothing, unless you suspect the line has been crushed (low flow) as hallerb has mentioned.
Jeff
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

This is the second suggestion. I don't think it works like that. Water must pass through the meter to move it.
OTOH, If his meter is across the street...
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 3/2/2011 11:20 AM, Thomas wrote:

Doesn't the water company always deal with leaks that are upstream of the meter? They do here. Or if they are at the meter. Have a friend that the postman drives on top of the meter box, ongoing problem that the water department fixes.
Jeff
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

I cant believe all the stupid comments in this thread.
#1. The meter will not spin of there is a leak in the line BEFORE the meter. Most meters are in the basement. The line from the street MAIN to the house is BEFORE the meter. The meter will NOT spin if there is a leak underground.
#2. All the OP needs to do is call the water company, explain what happened and they will send out a crew with special instruments to determine if there is a leak. (no digging required). There should not be a cost for this. The water company wants to know about leaks because that costs them money in lost water and possible contamination. The only tool you need is a telephone.
If the water company finds a leak, the tree company is responsible and their insurance should cover the costs to replace pipes.
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The problem with generalizations is that they are generally wrong. In the north, cold climates, most meters are in the basement and, of course, the meter will not spin. In some milder climate areas, the meter is often at the street. In that case, the meter will spin.
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 3/4/2011 6:19 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

I didn't know that. I have *never* seen a meter in the basement, but then I am in the south. Leaks from the street to the house are common here and are never dealt with by the water company. Since we don't know where the OP is, it will be up to the OP...
Jeff

Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

I didn't know that either. The ones I've seen are always in the basement up here near Chicago. If there is a basement. Don't know about slab houses, never looked. I expect in the utility room. In Chicago you would let the meter reader into the basement. They'd walk around a house yelling WATER! Probably had more dog bites than the postman. Here in the suburb I live in now there's a wire from the basement meter to a small box to an outside wall, so they read remotely. Maybe they've done that in Chicago by now. Where are the meters located down south? Street or next to the house?
--Vic
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Sounds like Vic lives in Naperville, IL
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri, 4 Mar 2011 07:56:45 -0800 (PST), "hr(bob) snipped-for-privacy@att.net"

No, Morton Grove. But one of my sons lives in Naperville.
--Vic
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 3/4/2011 8:11 AM, Vic Smith wrote:

I imagine so!

Right on the street in a sunken iron box with a lid. Millions of them.
Jeff

Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"robb" wrote in message

Thanks to all of your responses on the water problem.
What came to pass.... I collected several cups of the red/brown water. I showed it to the workers and they say , "not our problem" (suspiciously dismissive). I contacted tree service manager about the water going red 15 minutes after the crane pulled in driveway.
They sent someone out to look. Showed him the water and ran some out of the tap. Also pointed out that the sinks, tubs and toilets do not have rust stains so this is not an on going problem. He admitted that sometimes the workers will do things like drop the crane hook/ball weight, run over meters or even drop trunks on yard etc but he looked all over the area and did not see any evidence of this.
A neighbor had informed me that the "fold out crane boom" bumped a large (60 ft) oak that happens to be growing close to the water line run. The tree guy said either the truck or bumping the tree could have shaken the line enough to loosen some rust in the line.
He suggested running water for a while to see if it clears up, and to keep watch for water springing up out of yard or running back into the meter box.
We also learned from city service that the static water pressure can be any where from 35 - 80 psi and that we have a low pressure service water meter installed on our municipal water line because we have the older iron pipes. If we want high pressure meter service we need to replace our home service line with an approved high pressure line.
Conclusion ..... Water cleared up after running for about 20 minutes continuous and we have not seen any more discoloration nor signs of leaks in the yard. The water pressure is stable and within acceptable range though on the low side.
Thanks again for your advice and help, robb
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'd definitely read the meter and see if it moves at all with all water usage off. Could do it overnight. That of course assumes the meter is before the line in question.
As to who's responsible, I think the answer is it depends. If this were in the north, that line should be below the frost line and it seems very unlikely that driving a crane over it would cause a pipe that is in reasonable condition to fail. If it did, then I'd say it's the crane companies fault. On the other hand, if it's an old iron pipe that's clearly badly deteriorated and was only buried a foot deep, then it's not as clear. Also, these companies frequently have contract terms that you must agree to and sign that relieve them of responsibility for any such damage that occurs.
Add pictures here
✖
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.