It is common knowledge that water leaks are a significant source of loss, accounting for typically a quarter or more of water losses. However, less well known is the proportion of these losses that occur at the end user but Engerati’s estimates from various studies reported anecdotally typically in the range 20-30% of all water lost.
Add to this the billions that are paid out annually by insurance companies for water damage to homes and offices and the impacts of such water losses are clearly significant.
Enter the Leak Buster from the Israel water company Aqua-Rimat – one of “a new generation of smart water management tools.”
The Leak Buster is an all-in-one device that meters, monitors, detects and controls water flow. With integrated algorithms and pattern recognition capabilities, Leak Buster can detect leaks as low as 50ml/hour within minutes of them starting. With an integrated valve, the main supply can be shut off to close the leak or limit water damage. The device can also communicate the information to the end user via a smartphone or web interface, where also detailed consumption information is available.
The Leak Buster also contains several sensors for temperature, water quality (chloride, pH, conductivity) and pressure, to enable improved management and protection of the water system – and the end user if the water is detected not to be of drinkable quality.
“The Leak Buster creates a new category of ‘management of water at the end-user point’,” states the company’s product information. “The Leak Buster is a complementary product to smart home solutions, which mainly focuses on energy saving. By installing the Leak Buster, customers can make sure they aren't wasting even one unnecessary drop of water.”
With these credentials, the Leak Buster was judged the most innovative product in the Smart Home and End-User Engagement category at European Utility Week 2014 .
Home heating control and energy customer engagement
Runners-up in the award category were the Irish company Climote’s remote heating control and Boulder, Colorado Simple Energy’s virtual home engagement platform.
Climote is an app-driven control for home heating, enabling the heating to be controlled from any location via a hub that simply replaces an existing time switch.
Simple Energy’s platform is aimed to engage consumers in their energy usage through individual and community insights and rewards.