The Sports Department of the city of Helsinki uses water responsibly with the help of Smartvatten

Helsinki’s Sports Department administers tens of sports facilities where water is being consumed extensively, differing from constant consumption levels. The facilities offer a wide range of physical activities from swimming to football to exercise classes.

Thanks to Smartvatten’s remote monitoring service, the city’s indoor facilities spend water more responsibly and cost-effectively as the water consumption is being followed on the main water meter in real-time.

Smartvatten’s remote monitoring measures the water consumption of approximately 70 facilities of Helsinki’s Sports Department and because of their good experiences of the service, the number will increase. The property-specific remote monitoring has already paid itself off with just the leakage alerts which have prevented the costly waste of water.

“The remote monitoring of water consumption made us realise that water usage needs to be taken into consideration more seriously. The numbers tell us how much money we have unnecessarily wasted and how much we have saved in expenses because of the leakage alerts.”

Remote reading of water meters was the needed step in digitally monitoring water consumption

The properties of Helsinki’s Sports Department make up a large complex where water consumption is optimised singularly based on the needs of the property in question. For instance, the use of water in a swimming hall is naturally massive whereas the icing of outdoor facilities and the indoor showers also require site-specific monitoring of water usage.

What’s common between all the properties is that the unnecessary waste of water has to be monitored for the expenses. In a big property, a leak as small as the head of a needle can end up costing thousands of euros if it goes unnoticed.

Harri Uusimäki, Head of Maintenance Unit in the Sports Department, says that monitoring water consumption in the properties used to be downright ineffective.

“We used to just read the water meters at specific times and the water bill came when it came, as this was the general convention.”

Once Smartvatten’s remote monitor started importing data directly into the digital systems, the monitoring of water usage had a groundbreaking turnaround.

“In hindsight, we did not pay enough attention to monitoring the consumption of water. There was no possibility for anyone to react to the changes in water consumption in time as the data did not exist or we received it too late.”

Water is expensive, so predicting is the best way to keep expenses under control

In the end, the need to monitor water consumption at the Sports Department was very clear because the expenses were far greater than those of other energy sources.

“Not many know how expensive water can be. In big properties, water is a constant expense and can cost a million each year, so creating mental images of the worst possible scenarios is not uncalled for.”

Smartvatten’s remote monitoring service constantly imports data from the water meters into the energy monitoring system and sends out alerts for leakages if they occur. Fixing leakages as soon as possible helps to save in unnecessary expenses.

“Savings have to be done by reducing expenses, and doing so to water expenses is surprisingly easy. Is there anything more ridiculous than letting water run for no reason?”

Smartvatten’s remote monitoring is an excellent solution for large real estate stocks. The water consumption alerts are automatically defined according to the property, and the system imports data from the water meter directly to the cloud and is accurate in modern as well as old properties.

“Remote monitoring is a brilliant solution for large real estate complexes where there is no constant consumption level for water.”

Monitoring water consumption is the best knowledge-based management

Remote monitoring has brought surprisingly many benefits along with savings. Most of all, it is now clear how valuable a resource water truly is.

“Now that I have been analysing the water consumption data, I take water-saving more seriously than before. I wish everyone would use water only as much as they need and broken water pipes would be repaired immediately,” Uusimäki says.

When the background is secured with precise data, water consumption monitoring can help create more concrete development proposals.

“Knowledge-based management is talked about a lot these days. Monitoring water consumption is the best way of doing it because every proposal for action can be easily based on the numbers on the water meter,” Uusimäki adds.

Smartvatten’s remote monitor also sends out reports on saved Co2 emissions which supports the operation of responsible property maintenance. The city of Helsinki is committed to many energy-effective actions that also take water-saving into consideration.

The city of Helsinki’s Sports Department

  • Offers a wide range of sports services for people of all ages and groups. They also cooperate with different sports clubs, institutes, and service providers
  • Responsible for the maintenance and development of outdoor and indoor sports facilities as well as parks and other outdoor areas
  • Administers a real estate complex of many sports facilities

Smartvatten’s remote monitoring

  • Monitors the main water meter of a property with a camera in real-time
  • Sends out the consumption data instantly and it can be moved to an energy monitoring system
  • Leakage alerts notify about leaks