The Non-Magnetic Pipe And Cable Locator: Detecting Metal Objects

Many utility companies bury their pipes and cables underground. When they need to uncover a break, replace an existing pipe or simply perform maintenance, they need to find the correct piping. To facilitate this, technology provides a pipe and cable locator. These tools are capable of withstanding the rigors of their field applications.

Pipe and Cable Locators

Magnetic locators detect pipes and/or cables by generating an electromagnetic frequency. A receiver detects this signal and indicates the location of the underground utility structure. However, non-magnetic pipe and cable locators do not locate pipes in this manner. A pipe and cable locator is effective in indicating the location of utility structures only when it works in conjunction with another device. This device must be placed on or beside the pipe or cable, e.g. trace wire.

This type of pipe/cable locator usually consists of two specific and essential components:

  • Receiver: This picks up the signal
  • Transmitter: This puts out a signal at specific frequencies. Some actually produce multiple signals from which to select.

However, variations do exist. The exact capabilities and functions depend upon the model your company purchases. To improve the overall experience, it is possible to purchase such components or accessories as alligator clamps, signal clamps or inductive antennae. In some instances, these accouterments are included with the locator.

Non-magnetic pipe and cable locators are often the provenance of companies that work with fiber optic and cable television lines. They are also in demand for locating plastic pipes or conduits (providing those who planted them included a mini-transmitter) as well as street light power, water lines, and power lines.

Pipe and Cable Locator

If you install pipes and/or cables, it is extremely important to locate them when necessary. It is also essential others can do so when issues crop up. By installing tracer wire, a skilled technician can later use a non-magnetic pipe and cable locator to find the exact location of the equipment.

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