High leakage levels, inefficient pipe network maintenance, customer complaints and financial losses are some of the top challenges of water utilities. Many of these troubles can be effectively countered – if you know how to nip the problem at the bud by dealing with the issue of non-revenue water (NRW).
NRW is water that has been produced but cannot be billed. The loss can be the result of leakage or overflow (sometimes referred to as physical losses), theft of water or inaccurate metering (also known as apparent losses), or free use (for example, for firefighting). Calculations suggest that more than US$14 billion is lost every year by water utilities around the world due to NRW. The World Bank recommends that NRW should be less than 25% of the total water produced, while in many countries NRW is up to 60%. High levels of NRW are detrimental to the financial viability of water utilities and pose an extra burden on paying customers. Continue reading “Ways to permanently reduce non-revenue water levels”
Potential problems with insufficient water circulation in water tower tanks
Many would assume that water quality is best in the storage tank or near the tank. While that is often the case, there are exceptions where this might be the opposite. Continue reading “Is the darkest place under the candlelight?”
Analyse the cumulative contact time with a new computational method
The role of hydraulic models in risk assessment analysis
Most hydraulic models provide a ‘water age’ option that allows users to calculate the residence time of water within the pipe network. While this is a standard water quality indicator used in practice, it does not address the issue when we need to analyse the contact time with pipes of a specific material, such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Continue reading “Is the water quality of your network affected by the PVC in plastic pipes?”
Avoid the mistake of having a poorly thought-out fire protection plan
‘For centuries, water has been used to extinguish fires. The inexpensiveness and availability of water are the primary factors leading to its widespread use. But, not only must water be available for fire protection, it must be available in adequate supply. As a result, the question must be asked, how much water is necessary to be considered an adequate supply for fire protection?’
(Milke, J.A. 1980. How Much Water Is Enough? The International Fire Chief (March), pp. 21–24.)
Continue reading “How to conduct fire flow assessments for your water distribution system”
Safeguarding the quality of your treated water
Water age is an important performance indicator to many utilities because excessive age can cause problems with disinfection by-products (DBPs).
The water age refers to the time it takes for water to travel from a water source to consumers and is influenced by water distribution system flow velocities and pipe lengths. Continue reading “How to understand water age within your water distribution network”