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Water service connection replacement with GRUNDOTUGGER

12.01.19 - German water provider Beckum GmbH delivers 6 million cubic metres of potable water via a 1,050 km long pipe network and 33,500 property service connections straight to 135,000 residents and plants. The utility provides further 3.5 million cubic metres of water for re-distributors like neighbouring municipalities, water boards etc. In this way, an area exceeding 1,000 square kilometres within the district of Warendorf and also parts of the districts Soest and Gütersloh enjoy an all-round drinking water service. For the water provider Beckum, all-round service comprises the drinking water connection to the house, of course, meaning the connection between the distribution network, the main lines in the road and pavement area and the customer's facility itself, the drinking water service installation. It belongs to the facility site of the company which takes over the "non-expiring maintenance and renewal risk" as soon as the property owner has taken over the initial installation costs.

Even Service Connections Grow Old

Just like the main lines for potable water, the property service connections underlie ageing processes and must therefore be maintained and repaired, rehabilitated and even renewed from time to time. Rehabilitation and/or renewal can be carried out by applying conventional open-trench methods, which means excavating the damaged lines and connections, but meanwhile, trenchless underground installations are becoming increasingly popular. This method goes easy on private gardens, flowerbeds, paths, driveways, public roads and pavements; the traffic can continue smoothly without disturbance and the expenses remain low.

Pipe Bursting with a Winch

In the town of Ennigerloh (district of Warendorf) the replacement of property service connections belonging to a terraced single-family home (PE line OD 32) and an apartment building (PE line OD 40) were urgently demanded. This task simply called for the application of the compact hydraulic winch GRUNDOTUGGER250 made by TRACTO-TECHNIK and specially designed for such small pipe dimensions. With this machine, smaller pipe bursting operations in the already existing pipe line path can be carried out with little effort, economically and easily. Instead of the awkwardly shaped bursting rods, a flexible steel cable is pulled into the old pipe. On arrival at the installation pit, a cutting and reaming tool is linked to the cable. While the winch is being pulled back, the old pipe is cut open, the soil expanded and the new pipe pulled in, all in one go.

Pipe Replacement at Record Speed

For the replacement of the two property service connections in Ennigerloh, the water provider Beckum GmbH commissioned the company Gerhard Rode from Münster, with its base in Beckum; the company can look back on many years of experience in pipe installation. Besides conventional construction methods with open-cut trenches, the performance range of the business also covers underground installation - including property service connections. Normally the displacement hammer is applied for this special task but in Ennigerloh, the responsible parties, in cooperation with TRACTO-TECHNIK, rather preferred the pipe bursting method with the GRUNDOTUGGER250 cable winch.

With the method described above, the 7 m long old PE line OD 32 lying beneath the terraced single-family home was replaced by a PE 100 pipe OD 40 in only 7 minutes. Replacement of the 17 m long old PE pipe OD 40 beneath the road and through the front garden of the apartment building by a new PE 100 line OD 40 took only 18 minutes. The old pipe was cut up with a hook blade in process. The winch with a 14 mm cable can muster a total maximum pulling force of 100 kN at 65 bar, but only 30 kN were required for pulling in the new PE 100 pipes.

Extremely Recommendable

Not only the actual pipe bursting and pulling in processes are a matter of minutes, the transportation and assembly times are also very easy to manage. Handling and construction are simple and clear and, last but not least, investment and operation expenses remain low. For the renewal of pipe lines with small diameters, the GRUNDOTUGGER250 system offers a very economical alternative to the open trench method.
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