This article contains information about the principle of operation and the arrangement of equipment that can prevent flooding of your home or apartment in the event of a depressurized water supply system or a violation of the proper operation of plumbing fixtures. The knowledge gained will help you evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of leakage protection systems available on the market. In the rating of leakage protection systems presented here, we reviewed the best options for home use systems.
What you need to know about leakage protection systems
The installation of any leakage protection system is best combined with the overhaul of the facility. Its action is based on the principle of feedback. When flooding is detected, a mechanism is shut off that shuts off the water supply until the cause of the problem is clarified and its consequences are eliminated.
What are the elements and how does the leakage protection system work?
The protection system incorporates several main components:
1. Leak detection sensors. Usually they are installed in close proximity to places of probable flooding. They are triggered by liquid on the contact plates.
Water leakage detection sensor.
2. The control unit. It receives a signal from the sensor and gives a command to the cutting mechanism.
3. Shut-off valves with electric drive. It is mounted at the inlet of cold and hot water to a controlled facility. Closing occurs automatically when a pulse is received from the controller.
Shut-off valves with electric drive.
The energy supplier for such a system is usually a standard 220 volt electrical network. For safety reasons, it is reduced to the operating value for the installed equipment, which should not exceed 12 volts. Often flooding is accompanied by an emergency power outage. In this case, a backup power source is provided. Some manufacturers rely only on stand-alone batteries, which must be periodically charged or replaced with new ones.
Device for leakage protection.
Ways to connect sensors
Cable paths or radio communications are used to connect leak detection sensors. Sometimes a combination of both options is provided. Briefly tell about their features.
Wired systems are more time-consuming to install, but cheaper in material design. They provide a cable to each element.
Their main advantages:
- work from one common power source;
- lack of dependence of signal quality on the range of devices.
Wireless systems operate on specific radio frequencies. The installation of such equipment does not require the laying of cable routes, which is a significant advantage for large facilities or in the case of recent performance in the house of expensive repairs. The reliability of such a connection strongly depends on the remoteness of the sensors and the presence of natural obstacles in the form of walls or other volumetric objects.
The cost of such a kit usually exceeds the price of a wired version. An additional disadvantage is the need for periodic recharging of batteries or replacement of sensor batteries.
Number of connected sensors
Typically, the control unit provides for work with a certain number of leak detection devices, which cannot be exceeded. This indicator is important for objects with many problem areas. Sometimes the standard kit contains an incomplete set of sensors, which, if necessary, should be purchased separately.
When buying, pay attention to how many sensors the control unit supports.
Number of connected cranes
For urban apartments, systems with 2-4 shut-off valves are used. They are installed on each incoming pipeline of cold and hot water. It is clear that for large objects with a complex water supply scheme, a significantly larger amount of shutoff valves may be required.
Ball valves used to stop the flow of water are installed using standard pipe threads. Since pipelines with a diameter of ½, ¾ or 1 inch are most often used for pipelines, leakage protection systems are also equipped with shut-off valves of the appropriate size. Before buying a system, you need to know the diameter of the pipeline.
The design of any plumbing equipment is designed for a specific working pressure. In urban networks, it is 4-6 bar, but sometimes emergency situations occur, accompanied by hydraulic shocks. A rational solution is to install shut-off valves that can withstand 8-12 bar.
Local floods happen infrequently. A ball valve fitted with a leakage protection system may not be required for many years. In this case, its inner surfaces are covered with deposits that can interfere with closure at the most crucial moment. To prevent this from happening, a program is put in the control unit, forcing all locking elements to close and open at a certain frequency.
For the normal operation of any electrical system, a network connection with standard parameters is required. Input leakage protection equipment usually requires one of the following voltage options:
- 220 V. These systems include a built-in power supply that reduces the voltage to 5-12 volts that are safe for humans.
- 12 V. For normal operation of this type of system, an external voltage reduction unit is used, connected to a conventional 220-volt outlet.
- 4.5 V. This equipment is powered by conventional DC batteries. He has minimal energy consumption, so there are enough elements for several months, and sometimes years.
Batteries are usually used as a backup power source for systems connected to a household electrical outlet. Battery powered models can be equipped with supercapacitors.
Modern leakage protection systems are able to inform the user about the most important events. Usually a beep sounds. It can work in cases:
- leak detection and valve closure;
- disconnection from one of the sensors;
- malfunctions in the mechanical drive of the shut-off valve installed at the time of checking the protection against souring.
Some manufacturers have provided the ability to transfer information to a smartphone. In all cases, the alarm prompts the owner to inspect the territory and check the operability of the equipment.
Best wired leakage protection systems
Wired leakage protection systems are an inexpensive option for private or industrial use. They are quite easily mounted using fasteners, which usually come with the main equipment.
All of them are reliable, durable and amenable to a simple test of performance. Some models of this class can be reprofiled for simultaneous operation with sensors that supply a signal not only via cable, but also in radio mode.
Neptun Bugatti Base 1/2
System Features The kit consists of a wall mounted Neptun Base control module, three SW005 sensors and two ball valves equipped with the Neptun Bugatti Pro 220V electric actuator. The system is powered from a 220-volt network through a central unit. All other devices are connected to the corresponding terminals on its housing. The backup source is not supplied. Protective earth is provided only for valve actuators.
The system can be operated with up to 20 water leak detection sensors. Their maximum distance from the base should not exceed 100 meters. The manufacturer provides a six-year warranty on all equipment.
Shutoff valves. Ball valves are installed on pipelines with a diameter of 1/2 ". Their bodies are made of hot-rolled brass of the CW617N brand and are able to withstand a pressure of 40 bar at a maximum medium temperature of 120 ° C. They are equipped with an electric motor that generates a torque of 9 Nm. Response time from the moment of leakage no more than 21 seconds.The minimum resource is 100,000 cycles.
In case of an erroneous signal from the sensor, you can forcefully open the valve, but for this you will have to disconnect the main module. Up to 6 of these cranes can be connected to one control unit. A health check to protect against acidification is carried out automatically twice a month.
Alert. When any of them is triggered, an audio and light signal is turned on.
Neptun Bugatti ProW Plus 1/2
System Features The commercially available kit is equipped with a Neptun ProW + control module, one SW005 wired sensor and a pair of RSW + radio sensors, two ball valves with an electric drive of the Bugatti Pro 12V type. At the user's choice, the main unit can be powered from 220 or 12 volt networks.
As a backup power source, 4 lithium batteries are used that are installed inside the base. The equipment can be integrated into smart home systems, scheduling or security. Grounding is not required.
If necessary, the base can control six cranes, receiving signals from 31 radio sensors and 375 wired. The distance to the primary devices should not be greater than 50 and 100 meters, respectively.
Shutoff valves. Ball valves are mounted on pipes with a diameter of ½ ”. They are designed for a pressure of 40 bar at a maximum water temperature of 120 ° C. Their main elements are made of brass grade CW617N. The design is designed for 100,000 cycles of operation. It is possible to open and close the valve manually. The response time of the entire system does not exceed 21 s.
In order to protect against souring every 2 weeks, all taps are automatically closed and opened.
Alert. In case of sensors triggering, sound and light alerts occur. Factory warranty for the entire system is 6 years.
Aquastorozh Classic 2x15 TH39
System Features The Aquastorozh system is sold in a small box in which you can find:
- block of controllers;
- 4 round-shaped sensors with a chrome-plated front surface, contacts and wires of different lengths protected from oxidation;
- 2 ball valves with electric drive;
- adapter for connecting to a 220 volt network.
The main thing is considered to be powered by three 1.5 V batteries. Their energy should be enough for 3 years of battery life. When they are completely discharged, ionistors built into the control unit body come into operation, the charge of which is enough for 1 hour of normal operation, after which they block the water. Since the voltage in the network does not exceed 4.5 V, grounding is not required.
The system is designed for 7 years of trouble-free operation.
Shutoff valves. The system can include no more than 6 ball valves. They are made of brass and have ½ ”internal pipe threads at the ends. The fittings are designed for maximum pressure up to 16 atmospheres. The stem is connected to a high-speed electric drive. No more than 3 seconds will pass from the moment a leak is detected until it is completely closed.
To prevent acidification of the inner surfaces of ball valves once a week in automatic mode, they are briefly closed and opened.
Alert. The sound notification of the user occurs in the event of sensors being triggered, wire breakage or jamming of the crane detected.
Gidrolock WINNER Kvartira ½ Bugatti
System Features This system has a unique structure. It does not have a separate control unit, and the connection between the primary leak detection devices and the actuator is carried out directly. The set consists of two WSP sensors with a set of fasteners for their installation and two ball valves manufactured by the Italian company Bugatti with electric drive.
Shutoff valves. Ball valves have an internal section of ½ ”. They are made of chrome and nickel-plated brass. Their working pressure is 40 bar at a maximum permissible ambient temperature of 120 ° C. The design is designed for 150,000 cycles of closing and opening.
Each electric drive is powered by four 1.5 volt AA batteries. They are inserted under the cover of the device. Their service life in standby mode reaches 10 years. Due to the safe values of the operating parameters of the electrical equipment, grounding is not provided. The engine torque is 16 Nm.
The response time of the entire system does not exceed 15-20 seconds. To prevent souring of the internal surfaces of the valve twice a month, it partially closes and fully opens. Forcing the valve to open or close can be done using the buttons on the actuator housing. To perform these operations in manual mode, it is enough to pull out the safety bracket.
Alert. The user is notified by a sound signal. It is triggered when a leak is detected or if the supply voltage drops, which requires replacing the batteries.
Best Wireless Leakage Protection Systems
Wireless systems have the main advantage of ease of installation. They do not require laying cable routes, which is pleasant to property owners with quality repair of premises. Communication range is highly dependent on the presence of natural obstacles. This problem is usually solved by installing a more powerful router.
Akvastorozh Klassika 2x15 Radio
System Features This leakage protection system is largely reminiscent of the classic Aquastorozh household model, but is equipped with a radio base. In addition to the main control unit, the standard set includes two ball valves with electric drive and 4 sensors (two wired and wireless type). The user can choose the main way of eating from two options:
- using a network adapter 220/5 volts;
- three replaceable batteries of 1.5 volts.
In offline mode, the system is able to function for 3 years. Due to the low voltage of the internal network, grounding is not required. The backup power source is a built-in ionistor, the energy of which is enough for 1 hour of normal operation, after which all taps will automatically close.
The wireless sensors are equipped with two AAA pinky batteries, which last up to 5 years. When they are discharged, the “sensor loss” function is activated with the water supply turned off and the user notified.
Shutoff valves. Ball valves are threaded on pipes with a diameter of ½ ”. They are made of brass and are designed for operating conditions up to 16 bar and +90 о С. The distance to the controller should not exceed 30 meters. The drive trips in 3 seconds.
To control the operability of equipment twice a month, the system automatically gives a command to close and open. It constantly monitors the position of the damper, the state of the electrical network, the presence of a signal from the radio sensors.
Alert. If a leak or malfunction of any element is detected, an audible signal is triggered and the taps are closed.
Neptun Profi Wi-Fi 1/2
System Features The Neptun Profi Wi-Fi leakage protection system in the basic version is supplied as part of an intelligent unit, two ball valves with 12 volt electric drive, two wireless and one wired sensor. The main power source is an alternating current network of 220 volts. An internal adapter converts it to 12 volts. Grounding is not required. Four elements of the CR123A type act as a reserve. Their energy is enough for 36 hours of battery life.
Technical capabilities allow expanding the number of devices connected to the controller to 6 taps, 31 wireless and 375 wired sensors. To do this, you will have to connect an additional DC power source with a voltage of 12 volts with a capacity of up to 36 watts.
Actuators should be installed at a distance of up to 100 meters from the base unit, radio sensors - no further than 25 meters. To expand the signal coverage area, you should use the optional RSW + router. You can connect water consumption meters to the system. It is possible to obtain the necessary information on a smartphone.
Shutoff valves. Full bore ball valves are installed using ½ ”pipe threads. They are made of forged brass and are designed for an operating pressure of 40 bar at a temperature of not more than 120 ° C. The maximum engine torque is 9 Nm.
The response time is 21 seconds. The resource of the locking organ is 100,000 cycles. The warranty period of the entire system is 6 years. Control operation of cranes occurs twice a month.
Alert. The user is notified by a sound signal, an SMS message to a smartphone and its duplication by e-mail.
Gidrolock PROFESSIONAL Country House 1 ½ Enolgas
System Features This system is designed to protect against leakage of private homes. It is equipped with a control unit, one electric ball valve and three remote sensors. Equipment capabilities allow controlling simultaneously 20 cranes, 200 wired and 100 wireless sensors. Power is supplied from the built-in lead battery with a voltage of 12 volts with a capacity of 1.3 Ah. Grounding is not provided.
The radio sensors are equipped with CR2450 batteries, which have enough energy for 24 years. The range of stable communication reaches 500 meters. The response time of the system since leak detection is 30 seconds.
Shutoff valves. The ball valve has a 1 ½ inch pipe thread. It can be made of brass or stainless steel grade 304. Maximum operating parameters of the environment:
- pressure 40 bar;
- temperature is 100 about C.
To prevent souring, the drive automatically trips once every 2 weeks. The direction of rotation of the rod always occurs in one direction, which favorably affects the increase in the service life of the device. An optical control method is used to determine the position of the crane. In factory tests, such equipment can withstand up to 700,000 open / close cycles.
Alert. The user is notified by a sound signal.