Friday, June 28, 2013
ALICE SPRINGS' FIRST LEAK DETECTIVE UNCOVERS THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS GOING DOWN THE DRAIN
The leak detection initiative is the result of a partnership between Alice Water Smart and a local plumber.
The local ‘detective’ and plumber, Jordi Chalmers has already detected ‘mysterious’ leaks in several businesses, saving thousands of dollars going down the drain.
“Just recently I found a leak that was losing $13,700 worth of water (7.9 million litres) per year” said Jordi Chalmers.
“Water bills and a water audit can identify that there is a leak, but they are often difficult to find, particularly if they are underground.”
Of the 50 businesses and organisations that Alice Water Smart has worked with, 42 have been found to have a leak.
When Alice Water Smart was looking to the plumbing industry for help to detect some of the more difficult, unexplained leaks in buildings and gardens, Mr Chalmers visited Queensland to complete specialist training and invest in a state of the art acoustic leak detective device.
“It’s part technology, part experience and it works a bit like a bat’s sonar!”
“We use the acoustic listening device to sound out the leaks. Leaking pipes have a different ‘pitch’ to pipes that aren’t leaking.”
Large organisations are on average leaking up to 16.5 kilolitres (kL) per day, equating to just over $10,000 worth of water per year off their bottom line.
Small businesses are on average losing 25% of their water use to leaks, at a cost of $3,362 a year.
“The total volume of water lost by businesses audited by Alice Water Smart is on average 5,300 litres a day - that’s more than one average backyard swimming pool (30,000L) per week”, says Alice Water Smart Homes and Business project manager Liz Locksley.
“That’s around 22% of water that is metered and paid but leaking away unused on their premises.”
Alice Water Smart is supported by the Australian Government's Water for the Future initiative.