Best Pipe Detector | UK Guide | 2023

Best Pipe Detector
The best pipe detector will help you prepare for any eventuality when it comes to undertaking renovation work. Many people make the mistake of charging in with renovation projects, but often find themselves landing themselves in trouble by knocking through live wires, structural support beams and pipework. A pipe detector helps you overcome this issue, allowing you to precisely locate where any pipes may be. Planning a renovation or building project? Take some time to read through our pipe detector buying guide to help you find the best scanner for your budget.
Multifunctional Scanning Technology devices deigned purely to locate pipework are uncommon, which is why you are probably best looking into multifunctional wall scanners. When choosing a scanner, look for a 4-in-1 device that will allow you to search for a host of potential obstacles, including pipes, joists, beams and electrical wiring. The best scanning devices will allow you to search for different materials types, as well as locate empty and water-filled plumbing.

Scanning Depths

This is particularly important if you are unfamiliar with the space you are looking to scan. Most scanning devices will be able to scan at different depths in different operational modes. If your interest is scanning for pipes and plumbing, make sure the maximum scanning depth is enough to accommodate your needs.

Displays & Feedback

There is no point purchasing an expensive pipe detector if you can not make sense of scanning results. A large display is important as it will provide you with all the information you need to determine whether or not you have encountered a potential obstacle. A large LCD display will not only allow you to make changes to settings and switch between operational modes, it will also provide you with in-depth readings if your scanner model is advanced enough. Some of the more expensive detectors on the market will not only give feedback relating to signal strength, they will also provide you with estimated signal depth.

Automatic Calibration

A pipe detector should be reliable, accurate and consistent in its readings. Therefore, you should look for a scanner that can be automatically calibrated. Most models allow for this, will you only needing to turn on the unit and hold it against the wall you are looking to scan for calibration to be carried out.

Battery Performance

As wall scanners and pipe detectors are fairly compact pieces of equipment, they do not require much power in order to operate. In fact, most detectors can be powered by disposable or rechargeable AA or AAA batteries. However, if you are a professional who needs to use such a device on a very regular basis, you may be better off with a premium scanning unit powered by lithium-ion batteries.

Product Reviews – The Best Pipe Detectors

Planning some renovation work? Invest in a reliable pipe detector so you can carry out work with confidence. Below are some of the best detector models currently available. Make sure to also check out our guide covering the best cordless drills on the market today!

FOLAI Finder, Detector 5 in 1 Mutifunction Wall Scanner with Upgraded Smart Sensor, HD LCD Display and for Wood AC Wire Metal Studs Cable Joist Detection(Batteries Included, Gold, All

This 5-in-1 detector device from FOLAI is a reliable option for those planning on turning their attentions to renovation work. This is an incredibly accurate detector that makes use of advanced sensor technology to precisely locate metal pipes and other obstacles. It can also be used to to detect things like studs and steel bars in walls and ceilings. With five different scanning modes to choose from, you can use this detector for a broad range of applications. With a 3-inch scanning range for pipe detection, this should prove more than sufficient for locating pipes in walls.

With automatic calibration, you do not have to worry about setting this detector prior to each use. The ergonomic housing also makes this a comfortable detector to handle for prolonged periods. The LCD screen will provide you with a clear display of the exact position of concealed pipes, allowing you to mark the area before carrying on with your renovation work. If you want something that is inexpensive, reliable and very easy to use, this 5-in-1 detector is perfect.


Stud Finder, Stud Detector 5 in 1 Mutifunction Wall Scanner with Upgraded Smart Sensor, HD LCD Display and Audio Alarm for The Center and Edge of Metal, Studs, AC Wire, and Pipe Detection

This Jurgen K wall scanner is a multifunctional marvel that will make locating concealed pipes as easy possible. This multifunctional scanner be used to detect pipes, as well as other objects including studs, joists and electrical wire. This makes it a very practical device for planning renovation work, but it can also be used for more minor tasks, such as when you might looking to drill into walls to add mounts and brackets for shelves and electronics.

The user-friendly LCD screen provides you with an accurate reading of pipe and other obstacle locations. With fast detection guaranteed, you can undertake readings of large wall surfaces in next to no time. This multifunctional detector is also suitable for using with a variety of surface types. Not only can it scan through walls, it will scan through ceilings and flooring. It can also be used to scan through all types of finishes, including thick layers of wallpaper, veneer and paint.


Stud Finder Wall Scanner – 4 in 1 Stud Detector Detector Beam Finders Wall Detector Sensor Center Finding with LCD Display for Wood AC Wire Metal Studs Cable Joist Detection (Stud Finder)

This 4-in-1 stud finder and wall scanner from Travool provides you with a reliable tool for detecting pipework and other obstacles that might be concealed within walls and other interior surfaces. This electronic device provides you with four operational modes, with the ability to detect pipes, joists, beams and AC wire. When in pipe detection mode, you can scan at depths of up to 1.57 inches. This is adequate enough for finding large pipes concealed in walls, although may not be sufficient for those with deeper set pipes lurking behind wall surfaces.

The large LCD screen provides you with plenty of insights about the type of issues that might be concealed beneath walls. The beep alert makes scanning convenient, with an audible alert sounding whenever an obstacle has been discovered. Calibration is also automatic, meaning you can expect high levels of reliability every time, without having to take the time to personally set the device prior to use. Although effective, this wall scanner is fairly compact, with the ergonomic grip making it easy to use for prolonged scanning tasks.


Stud Finder Wall Scanner-4 in 1 Stud Detector Detector Beam Finder Wall Detector Sensor Center Search, for Wood AC Wire Metal Stud Cable Joist Detection

This 4-in-1 wall scanner from FOLAI is a reliable tool for identifying metal pipework and other obstacles hidden behind walls, flooring and ceilings. This digital scanner will always provide you with exact readings, with a loud beep alert sounding whenever something has been discovered. This sound alert function will also make it easy for you to close in on a target, with the function serving as a directional guide. The advanced sensor means each of the four available modes are incredibly reliable, saving you the need to invest in multiple scanning devices if you have a particularly big renovation job ahead of you.

Although some wall scanner devices are particularly difficult to calibrate, this FOLAI device is fairly straightforward to use. To begin, simply place it against the wall you wish to scan, wait for the beep and you are ready to start scanning. The large LCD display is particularly handy, providing you with essential information. Meanwhile, the backlight means you can use this in dim spaces, while always maintaining excellent visibility.


Bosch Professional 12V System Wall Scanner D-tect 120 (12V battery, max. detection depth plastic pipes/wooden studs/live cable/magnetic metal/non-magnetic metal: 60/38/60/120/120 mm, in L-Boxx)

The Bosch Professional D-tect 120 is a very expensive choice of pipe detector, but it is without doubt one of the best models around. This wall scanner uses patented radar technology to detect a variety of object types and various depths. In addition to being reliable at detecting concealed metal piping, it can also track down plastic pipes, non-live electrical cables, magnetic metal and non-magnetic alloys. You also have the benefits of spot view scanning here, with immediate feedback available, even if you have little free space to manoeuvre the scanner around.

With three detection settings available, you can put this scanner to use with different material types. You can be used to scan through both concrete and drywall, with designated modes for each material type. You can also use the universal scanning mode if you are unsure of what material you are scanning through. Although this scanner can be powered by AA batteries, you also have the option to use a 12-volt lithium-ion battery. The latter battery option is a good choice for professionals who need to use their scanner on a daily basis for hours at a time.


TACKLIFE Stud Finder, Upgraded Wall Scanner, 4 in 1 Center Electronic Wall Finders with Warning,Wood Stud/Metal/Live AC Wire/Deep Detecting Mode-DMS03

The TACKLIFE DMS03 is multifunctional and easy to use. With four different scanning modes to choose from, you can use this TACKLIFE scanner to hunt down pipework, as well as things like studs, joists and non-live electrical wiring. Superior sensor technology provides you with reliable levels of accuracy at all times. When searching for pipes, you can scan at depths of up to four inches. This scanning depth is particularly impressive compared to other pipe detectors available.

This scanner benefits from an ultra-bright LCD screen, with high-definition clarity to provide you with easy readings in any interior. The display not only provides you information relating to scanning mode, it also gives you feedback regarding detection depth and detection strength. You will also be able to keep an eye on remaining battery levels. The three signal light system is another useful feature. When the device is ready to use, the indicator will appear green. As you move the scanner around a wall or ceiling, the light changes from yellow to red as you hone in a potential obstacle.


Bosch 601081000 Professional Digital Detector GMS 120 (1 x 9 V Block Battery, Protective case, max. Detection Depth in Steel/Copper/Live Cables: 120/80/50 mm), 9 V, Black/Blue

The Bosch Professional GMS 120 is an advanced choice of wall scanner, but serves as a more affordable alternative to the D-tect 120. This scanner has three detection settings to choose from, with the metal scanning mode ideal for finding metal pipework. You can also make use of the drywall and live wire modes for detecting other obstacles. The three colour indicator LED ring provides you with an easy way of honing in on obstacles. The Led will remain green when no object is detected, before switching to yellow when the scanner is in the vicinity of an object. When a lock has been made on an obstacle, the LED will appear red.

The LCD display may be rather simple, but it provides uses with a handy guide of signal strength. However, if you want more information displayed on screen, with additional readings relating to signal depth, you may want to consider spending more money on a premium alternative, such as the previously mentioned Bosch Professional D-tect 120.


Mastech MS6818 Wire Cable Tracker Metal Pipe Locator Detector Tester Meter AC/DC 12~400V

The Mastech MS6818 is a versatile wall scanner that be used to locate concealed cables, joists, beams and pipes concealed in walls and ceilings. This is a particularly effective scanner for tracking down pipework, regardless of the kind of material it is made from. It can also be used to find water-filled pipes, which is often difficult for more basic detectors to do.

It may look a little simplistic, but the Mastech MS6818 provides you with all the functionality you could ever need from a wall scanner. The display screen provides you with an indicator of signal depth and strength, as well as voltage if you are scanning for live wires. It also benefits from a flash light function, which makes it perfect for the professional carrying out an audit of a space to renovated.


Pipe Detector Buying Checklist

When investing in a pipe detector, the most important factor to consider is scanning ability. You should ensure any detector you buy can scan at suitably deep depths to provide you with reliable feedback. You will also want something that is easy to use, so look for stripped-back controls and intuitive design.

A large display will also make using your detector straightforward. To help track down potential pipework and plumbing, you should also opt for a model that will allow guide you toward potential obstacles. Some units rely on beep alerts that become louder or more frequent as you near an obstacle, while others use a three-colour LED ring that turns from green, to yellow and then to red.


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