PE pipes are widely used within water supply

In Denmark, many water utilities are using PE pipes for almost all of their new installations, and AVK gate valves with PE pipe ends are an integrated part of fully welded distribution networks covering many supply areas.

PE pipes are widely used in water supply and distribution networks – with good reason. PE pipes have a longer lifetime compared to traditional pipe materials, they are corrosion resistant and easy to handle and transport due to their relatively low weight. And these are just a few of the advantages. Using PE pipes and valves with PE pipe ends for your pipe network makes it possible to get the benefits of a fully welded pipe system with no bolts and mechanical joints and thereby a significantly lower risk of leakage.

Advantages of PE pipes

We went to visit two of the larger water utilities in Denmark for a discussion about their use of PE pipes. Both suppliers are mainly using PE pipes for new installations. Only in rare situations, other materials such as cast iron or PVC are used for repair of existing pipelines. Furthermore, valves with PE pipe ends are often used in order to obtain the advantages of a fully welded PE pipe system. 
The two water utilities agree that PE pipes are the optimal choice for water distribution, and they have been using PE pipes for new installations for many years.

"PE pipes are easier to handle and in general come in a higher quality than e.g. cast iron and PVC pipes. You do not need to handle large bolts and there are no mechanical joints to give rise to leakage", representatives from the two utilities say.

In urban areas, pipes and valves are assembled using electro welding. On longer distances, butt welding allows for the pipes to be welded above ground rather than in the trench, for easy installation.

According to the Danish water utilities there are other advantages as well. PVC pipes contain phthalates and over time they can become brittle enough to crack easily. Also, when using pipes of cast iron or asbestos cement it is needed to level the soil in the trench in order for the pipes not to break whereas the PE pipes are flexible and will follow terrain.


New installations of fully welded PE pipe systems

Photos above represent two projects at the water utilities involving new installations of PE pipes and valves with PE pipe ends.
In Aalborg a new distribution line was established as an emergency backup for a distribution area, where the consumers to this point in time could only be supplied from one location. The emergency backup ensures that the consumers will still be supplied with clean water in case of e.g. contamination at their main supply.

The photos from Aarhus are related to the establishment of a completely new water supply, a 5.5 km main line (450 mm) and related main lines for raw water to be cleaned at the water plant and for distribution (400 mm). Related to the establishment of the new water supply, drainage was established in the nearby park. The water utility had to relocate some pipes due to the placement of the drainage, and loops of PE pipe were led below the drainage lakes and connected to the existing non-PE pipes.

Unique features of AVK gate valves with PE pipe ends

  • Available for outside pipe diameters up to 630 mm (for water)
  • Valve/pipe connection has no bolts and is stronger than the PE pipe itself
  • Possibility to obtain pipe approval that covers the entire network including valves, since all standard PE pipes can be mounted on the valve
  • Extra-long pipe ends that leave room for an additional weld
  • Renowned AVK valve design


PE pipes in water distribution

A fully welded PE pipe system offers a lot of benefits such as reduced risk of leakage, ease of installation and a high durability. 


Gate valves for a fully integrated PE pipe system

Join us for a tour around our factory where we manufacture AVK gate valves with PE ends.