James Kleynhans Water Treatment Works

Due to the numerous complaints of poor water quality and water shortages from James Kleynhans Water Treatment Works, MBB’s Pravesh Nosib, through his Water Conservation and Demand Management project, investigated the matter.

Upon initial investigation, it became apparent that a serious intervention was needed as the plant was not producing the 10 million litres per day that it is designed to produce. Instead, the plant was only producing 3-4 million litres per day, only half of the plant’s potential. This underperformance was due to several issues including chemical treatment problems, a clogged clarification, a dysfunctional clarification, dysfunctional filtration system and a high lift pumping issue.

In order to solve these problems, MBB looked at practical and cost-effective ways of improving operations. These interventions included improving the chemical treatment process and refurbishing the critical parts of the system. These parts included the clarifiers and desludging valves which were upgraded to pneumatically operated units that allow operation without having to climb into a buried chamber, as was the case previously. In addition, the filtration system was refurbished by replacing valves, actuators and the pneumatic tube reticulation on the backwash and air supply side of the filter house. Control panels were also rehabilitated and ensured to be functioning without any faults. Finally, the high lift pumps were replaced, as after further investigation, these pumps were already beyond their expected service life.

Pravesh mentioned that, “With MBB’s intervention at the James Kleynhans Water Treat Works, the process throughput has improved tremendously from 3- 4Ml/day to 9-10 Ml/day, thereby ensuring more water is available to the Grahamstown community.”