New Braunfels Utilities Cuts Water Loss by 50 Percent with FCS Leak Detection

Equipment helped department exceed water loss reduction goal

Milford, OH (December 14, 2011) – Texas-based New Braunfels Utilities (NBU) used leak detection equipment from Fluid Conservation Systems (FCS) to build an efficient maintenance program for its distribution network while drastically reducing water loss. The equipment allows NBU to conduct scheduled repairs on its pipelines instead of dealing with leaks on an emergency basis.

NBU workers use an FCS TriCorr Touch correlator to locate leaks and conduct scheduled maintenance.

NBU workers use an FCS TriCorr Touch correlator to locate leaks and conduct scheduled maintenance.

The NBU leak detection and valve maintenance program was established in 2009 to reduce water loss and increase system and valve reliability for NBU’s 456 miles of pipeline and 24,000 customer connections. At the end of the first year of the program, NBU calculated its average water loss at 2,000 gallons/ mile/ day.

Recognizing the need for improvement, NBU purchased FCS leak detection equipment including Xmic ground microphones, a SoundSens “i” correlating noise logger, a TriCorr Touch correlator and Permalog acoustic leak noise data loggers. The team began using the equipment to perform preventive maintenance on 750 valves per year and proactively scan the city for non-surfacing leaks. Two years later, NBU estimates its average water loss at 961 gallons/ mile/ day, less than half the loss rate during the program’s first year.

“Everyone knows that water is a precious resource and its preservation requires a ton of attention,” said NBU Operations and Maintenance Division Manager, Trino Pedraza. “We tested many products in the field and found FCS to have the highest level of reliability.”

FCS Permalog data loggers attach magnetically to pipelines and use advanced algorithms to discern the acoustic signature of leaks from background noise. SoundSens “i” and TriCorr correlators analyze data from acoustic sensors to approximate a leak’s location. The FCS Xmic electronic ground microphone amplifies noise generated by water escaping from buried supply lines under pressure, allowing users to pinpoint a leak’s location.

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