The find gave Per Møller the reason for the doubling of his water loss: ”The water loss had been 1.3-1.5 m3 per hour or 6-6,500 m3 in a year – which explains almost the entire increase from 2019 to 2020. And by finding this one leak, we have now reduced our water loss by half.”
Detecting the leak was complicated by the fact that Børkop Water utility also supplies water to the neighbouring utilities. Consequently, the night-time consumption never comes below 7 m3/h and can therefore not be used to detect leaks. In addition, the street on which the leak was found had already been renovated, and as a result, Per Møller does not believe the utility would have found it themselves.
”We found this leak in the last place we would have looked, so it would have been almost impossible to locate. Without flowIQ® 2200 and Leak Detector, it definitely would have cost us a lot of money and resources to find it.”
When the pipe was dug up, there were clear signs that it had been squeezed, which caused the crack.
Successful leak detection on plastic pipes
Per Møller located the leak in close collaboration with Kamstrup, who had kept a close eye on the noise levels. Kamstrup also joined the operations manager at the address to listen to the stop cock and confirm the leak after the water meter’s noise levels indicated something was wrong.
The fact that the leak turned out to be in a PEL pipe surprised everyone as the noise from a leak is more difficult to detect from a pipe made of plastic rather than one made of e.g. metal. Using acoustics to find leaks in plastic pipes can therefore be a challenge. But the analytics software Leak Detector showed a clear development in the noise levels for the leak in question.
Sounded too good to be true
Børkop Water utility was one of the utilities involved in developing and testing the flowIQ® 2200 in 2018. And while Per Møller was sceptical at first, today, he is pleased with both the solution and the cooperation with Kamstrup: ”When I first heard about Kamstrup’s new water meter that was able to listen its way to leaks, I thought it was too good to be true. But we are very happy with our collaboration and proud that our learnings can help our colleagues find leaks in the future.”
The collaboration with Kamstrup began already in 2014 when Børkop Water Utility switched to MULTICAL® 21 meters after having experienced significant problems with their previous meters. Today, the utility only installs flowIQ® 2200.
A futureproof distribution network
Vejle Municipality has an ambition for Børkop to double in size over the next 10-15 years, which is reflected in the many new development projects in the area. It is even more critical that both money and hours are spent right in a town with growing pains and only two people at the water utility. ”The key is to be foreseeing and to apply our resources where they generate the most value. Here, the new meters and Leak Detector help us use the noise levels to detect a leak before a burst occurs.”
The investments in the distribution network and new meters also benefit the water utility’s consumers through significantly higher security of supply, reduced risk of bacterial contamination from leaks or bursts, and not least minimal water loss.
”We are very ambitious when it comes to our water loss – we want to get it as far down as possible. But it also comes down to handing over the best possible distribution network to the next generation here at the utility. And we’re well on our way,” says Per Møller.
About the project:
- Metering points: 2,400
- Distribution network: Approx. 100 km of pipes
- MULTICAL® 21 and flowIQ® 2200 water meters
- READy drive-by meter reading
- Leak Detector